Steady as she goes

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Blog entry by toyguy posted 02-03-2010 08:59 PM 5744 reads 6 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

For some time now I have thought about making myself a steady rest….. So, today I did just that. Plans for these type of rest are abundant on the inter-web. I read a couple of construction articles, then went to the shop to see what I ended up with. One very good article can be found here:

Steady Rest PDF PDF

Constructed of 3/4” ply, hard maple and some wheels off some casters. I had wanted to use in line Rollerblade wheels, but none could be had that were with-in my budget. I looked at some of my old Radio Controlled Airplane wheels, but think they were just too soft, and large. Anyway, these caster wheels will do the trick, and were very cheap. The big orange box stores will have them.

The following pictures show the completed rest on it’s maiden voyage. Set up in a spindle configuration, using an old 1” dowel. It seems to work very well. Really stopped the whip that is so often the case in this type of turning. I don’t think I will be using it in this type of set-up very much, but it’s nice to know I can. Reversing (flipping over) one of the legs will allow me to get in on even thiner diameters. I see me using this more in the hollowing of longer pieces such as vases, and maybe some segmented things. .... as well as bowls.

The left over cut-outs will be made into a donut chuck….. or maybe a longworths….when I get around to it….

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Click for full view of pictures…...............

-- Brian, Ontario Canada,

9 comments so far

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2703 posts in 2374 days

#1 posted 02-03-2010 10:24 PM

Looks good—I need to make one


-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View stefang's profile


14935 posts in 2422 days

#2 posted 02-03-2010 10:48 PM

Well done Brian. That looks a little like mine, except better. It’s pretty handy with long thin turnings.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View CharlieM1958's profile


16143 posts in 3306 days

#3 posted 02-03-2010 11:19 PM

I can see myself needing one down the line. Nice job, Brian.

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

View Loucarb's profile


2388 posts in 2533 days

#4 posted 02-04-2010 12:02 AM

Well done Brian. I’ve thought about making my own at some point. Thanks for the link.

View hunter71's profile


2478 posts in 2275 days

#5 posted 02-04-2010 02:35 AM

Another pair of steady hands for sure. Nice work.

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View kolwdwrkr's profile


2821 posts in 2678 days

#6 posted 02-04-2010 03:44 AM

I’d like to make one of these too. In fact I need. to. Looks like a job well done.

-- ~ Inspiring those who inspire me ~

View scrappy's profile


3506 posts in 2518 days

#7 posted 02-04-2010 08:36 AM

Great job. Thanks for the info. I need to make one of these as well as the longworth chuck.

Time to make jigs!

Keep it up.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View Raymond's profile


676 posts in 2815 days

#8 posted 02-04-2010 05:48 PM

Oh great another thing I have to make….Looks great. I use one on my metal lathe and never really ever gave any thought to using one on the wood lathe. Great work

-- Ray

View PASs's profile


585 posts in 2186 days

#9 posted 10-19-2010 07:04 PM

I got my roller blade wheels from the second hand store…just bough a couple of pairs of old roller blades and disassembled them.
Ended up about 25 cents a wheel…and I got some neat plastic boots as well.

-- Pete, "It isn't broken, you just aren't using it right."

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