|Forum topic by nerdkraft||posted 12-27-2014 07:10 PM||896 views||0 times favorited||5 replies|
12-27-2014 07:10 PM
Preface: I have done a lot of searching on the forums and found several threads about whether to start with the easy wood tools. A few threads on people being happy with adding the EWT to their existing HSS set up. I have a somewhat different question.
When I first got into woodturning at TechShop, they had a pretty beat up sharpening station with the wolverine jig and I was immediately turned off. I then got myself the easy wood tools set with the EWT full size rougher, finisher and detailer. I had a blast and have made many bowls, pens, stoppers, pepper grinders.
Fast forward 3 years and I’m questioning whether I should consider going to a traditional HSS set. I don’t really care about ‘learning traditional’ just for the sake of the learning. I’d love to get validation (and/or disagreement) on these reasons from those of you that have both traditional and carbide insert tools:
1. Cutting speed – watching videos and seeing threads on ‘made gifts in about an hour’ it seems to me that you get better and faster cuts with traditional gouges. With my easy rougher, getting a spindle blank to round takes quite a bit of time with either push cuts or side to side. Going too aggressive catches corners. Watching someone good with a roughing gouge get to round seems like it’s far faster. Same goes for bowl gouges in hollowing.
2. Cut quality – I like my easy finisher but I still get lots of tear out on end grain and have noticed myself doing fewer bowls because of the time to sand. I can get pretty great results by making the last bit of cutting I do be very gently to the point where I produce saw dust instead of shavings but this goes back to the speed portion (quality means taking a whole lotta time.)
3. Flexibility – With the detailer + rougher I can definitely do beads but they are a pain. Trying to make a ball/round shape by sweeping with a square cutter or notching with the detailer is a pain but it works (most of the time). The videos of people just rolling their gouges makes it look simple.
At this point, these things matter and I’m thinking of getting a Tormek t-4 (in an attempt to just get the great sharpener once vs start and upgrade) and some gouges. Do these make sense?
TL;DR – I see a lot of people deciding on whether to go from HSS gouges to carbide. I have gotten great results with carbide. Is it worth it to get a whole new set up and go to the gouges?