Alan Lacer Skew VS Traditional flat skew

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Forum topic by lovemachine posted 03-25-2014 01:34 AM 2187 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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20 posts in 1499 days

03-25-2014 01:34 AM

I have recently been introduced to the skew. I borrowed it from my father. I have found it was a little difficult to use, at first, but I am slowly getting the hang of it.

He also has an oval skew, but we have found its difficult to sharpen. I’m not sure I want to buy the oval because of that reason.

I have been reading about the Alan Lacer skew. And I like what I’m reading. Does anyone here have any experience with it? I’m thinking about buying one, but would like to learn more first.

4 replies so far

View Wildwood's profile


2300 posts in 2102 days

#1 posted 03-25-2014 10:00 AM

Can you tell me the difference between Richard Raffin’s “Radius Skew,” and Lacer skews other the thickness and price?

Raffin convinced me putting a radius on my skew would make life easier many years ago. Simply went to my grinder and put a radius on my skews. Found radius skews easier to use and re-sharpen. This video shows how to put a radius on a skew.

I went back to normal flat skew bevel after a year or two.

Before you buy try putting a radius on the skew you own!

-- Bill

View Wildwood's profile


2300 posts in 2102 days

#2 posted 03-25-2014 11:38 AM

Lacer skews made by Hamlet, and Raffin skews made by Henry Taylor, tools M-2 HSS. Both Hamlet & Taylor share the same address in Sheffield, England.

Lacer Skews

Raffin Skews

I seldom recommend making your own tools, with exception of changing a tool bevel angle, and shape of business end of the tool. If having trouble with your regular skew try putting a radius on it.

If you have an inexpensive square scrapper from that spindle set you bought should only few minutes at the grinder. If have more than one skew put a radius on one of them.

Still need practice, but think will find it easier to re-sharpen.

-- Bill

View mpax356's profile


72 posts in 2460 days

#3 posted 03-25-2014 02:24 PM

I bought the big Lacer skew only because I found it at half price and could not resist a bargain. I find it far too large to be comfortable for the smaller spindle work I typically do. If I was turning a lot of spindles larger than say 2” like balusters, it would be my go to tool because of the mass. It will muscle thru some cuts that might cause a catch on smaller skews. My go to skew is 3/4” with a bout an 8” handle which I find a great size. It is a straight skew. I never used an oval skew. If I had skew lessons from Nick Cook, I probably would use an oval. I do have a 1” HF skew ground with a Lacer grind and like it for planing cuts. A lot of it is personal preference and personal experience. I think Lacer has the right idea about cutting up a 2×4 into turning blanks and turning to tooth picks. By the time you finish, you will be comfortable and competent with the skew.

-- MPax, Atlanta

View moke's profile


1154 posts in 2744 days

#4 posted 03-25-2014 05:14 PM

I got an Alan Lacer DVD and was convinced that the skews he had were the going to be the best thing ever, but while I like them I agree totally with mpax356….

I was in a mode recently of making my own carbide insert tools, so I was making quite a few tool handles…and it was awesome, but for anything too much smaller they just seem too big. This is just my opinion, and I am not the most accomplished turner either, I just enjoy “playing”. They are good for some things, but not a lot….

-- Mike

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