look guys are we being ripped off with new and not so new ideas?

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Forum topic by SCOTSMAN posted 05-29-2009 09:58 PM 1795 views 0 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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5849 posts in 3783 days

05-29-2009 09:58 PM

I just am like most here a sucker for new tools at least I was till I started asking how difficult would it be to make this cr@p myself excuse expletives . Anyway recently I bought a new Robert Sorby thin parting tool then I saw it I thought MAN an old knife ground down would have done the same job L.O.L. Well now I am being a bit over the top ,but do you know what I mean.Now I am in an unique poistion to most of you for quite a few years I studdied at a local college machining and made myself a purpose built machine shop fully tooled up with lathes, milling machines ,etc, etc, etc . Anyway I can maybe let you see how easy some of this stuff (shall we now call it) can be turned out .Much of woodturning is copying metal working tools who originally stole their ideas from woodturners.Question is hypothetically do we really need to have the giant proverbial polystyrene fairy at the top of the tree ? Many of the gizmo’s and gadjets for sharpenning tools are also just an insult to turning but we do go out and repetatively buy them simply because they are new to us .I aim ( watch this space ) to make a lot of woodturning and other tools this coming year which I will very happily demonstrate here on lumberjock’s to you guys so that you can see how it is done bear with me Your pal scottish Al

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

27 replies so far

View degoose's profile


7244 posts in 3553 days

#1 posted 05-29-2009 10:03 PM

Och Aye
I for one buy all the new gizmos and actually use about 90 percent of them.. but if you can show how to make them easily and cheaply I will give it a go.
\Thanks Al
regards Larry

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View CharlieM1958's profile


16280 posts in 4417 days

#2 posted 05-29-2009 10:04 PM

That’s the Scottish thriftiness we all know and love!

I’m looking forward to seeing what you come up with.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Allison's profile


819 posts in 3997 days

#3 posted 05-29-2009 10:09 PM

I agree with Charlie. Can’t wait to see what you come up with! And when you make something better than the other guys and market it and become a billionaire, remember us all here on LJ’s! LOL!!!
Seriously this will be interesting. Can’t wait!

-- Allison, Northeastern Ca. Remember, Amateurs built the Ark. Professionals built the Titanic!

View Don Newton's profile

Don Newton

716 posts in 3817 days

#4 posted 05-29-2009 10:10 PM

You go Alistair!

-- Don, Pittsburgh

View PurpLev's profile


8547 posts in 3847 days

#5 posted 05-29-2009 10:19 PM

def. gonna wait to see what you’ll be presenting us with :)

I feel the same sometimes, I’ll see a new tool/jig and say – heck,. I can make that – BUT – to make it as nice as the store bought ones , you’ll need to work with metal – which is something that many of us just don’t have the capabilities to do (milling, turning, etc of metal materials) – so we come up with ideas to make things out of wood – sometimes it works, sometimes even better than store bought ones, but sometimes – you just can’t compare it to a store bought anodized aluminum piece of tool.

I wish I had the capacity to machine tools like that :)

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3783 days

#6 posted 05-30-2009 12:01 AM

perhaps to be fair , I have a great deal of machines which would be useful to me which you may not have. However things like grinding rests etc can be made easily from wood and some things can be made from wood and metal .So thanks so far guys as I say I will do this slowly over the next year.I am still going to show the way to fill holes in wood with toner mixture but I have bought a massive new industrial woodworking lathe last year and it is too awkward for me to change speeds etc the way it is designed and it’s a big heavy lathe nearly six feet over the bed, so I am going to fit it with variable speed three phase just like my last one was .At the moment it’s single phase and the slowest speed I can get it to is around 2500 which is dangerous I had a piece fly off and just missed me frightened me enough to wait til I get variable speed with an invertor. Anyway beaqr with me.Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3775 days

#7 posted 05-30-2009 12:29 AM

Hey alistair
I don’t want this to get around but i think your correct .Just look at my shop full full full, I have four dovetail jigs 3 spendy machines that mortise 3 different size band saws and maybe 10 new jigs new in the box 5 of witch I’ve never even test driven. Could I have made many of the Jigs I bought YES did I NO. I guess I just have that new-a-tool-a got-a-have-ahs,. SHHH don’t tell the boss She thinks I need all that for business.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Julian's profile


880 posts in 3724 days

#8 posted 05-30-2009 12:57 AM

I’m with you Alistair. I like to think of myself as thrifty, because I’d rather spend 4 hours making a jig to do a task versus buying some Chinese crap from Rockler or any other site. It seems to be all about marketing, more than the actual task of woodworking these days.

-- Julian, Park Forest, IL

View kiwi1969's profile


608 posts in 3640 days

#9 posted 05-30-2009 01:10 AM

Maybe most people either don,t have the knowledge, or have forgotten how, to make their own stuff. I agree with you, there,s to much simple stuff for sale that can be made in the shop, like push sticks as a classic example. A quick bit of research and all you need to know about making your own tools and jigs is out there in cyberspace.

-- if the hand is not working it is not a pure hand

View Broda's profile


313 posts in 3717 days

#10 posted 05-30-2009 03:01 AM

Spot on

There is another woodturner around my area that has made alot of the machines he owns and they work as good or better than the high range lathes and for a fraction of the price.
but of corse not everyone has acess to welders or metal lathes or milling machines but (nearly) everybody would at least be able to make there own round nose scraper out of an old file. all you need is a grinder a hacksaw and a propane torch (or a bonfire with lots of coals)
so there is really no excuse for saying I cant make my own things so i have to go out and buy them

dont get me wrong, im not saying that store bought tools are bad or anything like that. im just saying that anybody could make there own with just a couple common tools.

see this aricle for more info

-- BRODY. NSW AUSTRALIA -arguments with turnings are rarely productive-

View PurpLev's profile


8547 posts in 3847 days

#11 posted 05-30-2009 03:35 AM

Broda- that is a great link – Thanks!

I also think it’s sometimes lack of self confidence that is also driven by manufacturers marketings – for example. I’m in the process of building my own router lift and table plate, and my own wagon vise (for workbench). but I keep having these notions that maybe my designs are not as “high quality” as the store bought aluminum and high-tech versions – maybe my materials will not hold up to the stress that those store-bought versions will…. I know that It’s more psychological, as I’m pretty confident that my ideas will work just as good, but that little voice is always there…. ooooh look at that shiny new jig in the store – must be the best ever… lol

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View sharad's profile


1117 posts in 4003 days

#12 posted 05-30-2009 07:25 AM

Alistair, your idea is superb. You are well equipped for doing it and I fully support you in your efforts.

-- “If someone feels that they had never made a mistake in their life, then it means they have never tried a new thing in their life”.-Albert Einstein

View RBWoodworker's profile


441 posts in 3550 days

#13 posted 05-30-2009 05:49 PM

HA!! a1jim !! I’m gonna squeel!! where’s the boss?? your gonna have to loan me some of those many overstocked tools you got now!! LOL

-- Randall Child

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3775 days

#14 posted 05-30-2009 06:01 PM

Hey Randy Good to see back at LJs
I give up but it’s a bit of a drive, You can borrow those rubber drill bits, the lawn mower drill press combo,
the Styrofoam bench, the dog powered table saw. and the remote flying circular saw. I’m sure I can find more

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View RBWoodworker's profile


441 posts in 3550 days

#15 posted 05-31-2009 08:51 AM

No no no..I wanted to borrow your left handed cresent wrench, the tablesaw with the hand crank used for power, (I know you got one too..LOL) and as far as that remote controlled circular saw goes.. make sure you give me fresh batteries for it this time, last time it barely had any juice and I chased it all over the place..:P

-- Randall Child

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