Square, Square Radius, or Round?


bfiedler
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I am new to turning. I have made maybe 20 pens, a few coffee scoops, and a few pieces of excellent exotic firewood. I am realizing the issue I have is sharpening. I don't have the budget to purchase a sharpening jig, and I was a fool and bought cheep chisels (8 chisels for $40). I was looking at getting replaceable carbide tools, specifically Rocklers. My question is, if you had to choose a chisel, that would do the most of your work, which tip would you choose? I plan to make pens, and small gifts, as well as move into larger projects, like bowls, and spindles. Eventually I will expand the tool collection, but would like to start with 1 that will do most of the work for now.  Any help would be great! Attached is a photo of a few pens I made... just for attention. Cause thats what we all want.

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Nice pens.

I can't answer your question, I just figured I would give you some attention... :)

 

Kidding aside...I like the pens.

You should throw up some pics of your work on a Showcase thread if you want to show off.

I'll bet many of us would find them inspiring.

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I'm not a pro turner by any stretch. I would advise you to read up and practice sharping what you have with what you have or can get. I simple bench grinder and a flea market stone will do to start. You can learn to sharpen buy sight and feel along with a few homemade templets or gauges to check your work and this is better done on cheap high speed steel tools any way, when you step up to carbide you will need a slower grinder with a speciality wheel.

 

the work looks nice bye the way

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my answer is get them all.............you dont need to buy a store bought tool there expensive and frankly there super easy to make.  you can make your tool handle and shaft then just drill hole and tap it with threads.  then you can just use a bolt to hold a blade in place.

 

here is a source of cheap blades there going to be mostly square blades

 http://globaltooling.bizhosting.com/products/carbide-insert-knives.html

 

eddie castelin sells round blades through his web site that are cheaper then any other site like woodcraft or rockler

http://eddiecastelin.com/cutters_only

 

this is the bench grinder i have its super smooth running my tools dont get super hot shoot it runs so smooth i dont aways use my guides to sharpen my tools with .  

http://www.woodcraft.com/Product/150780/8in-slow-speed-grinder.aspx

 

home made sharpening guide

captain eddie castalin also makes a guide you can buy cheaply.

 

here is a example of one of the tools that made. you can use a square shaft for extra stability but a round shaft will allow you to cut at a angle for a gentler cut.  

 

imagejpg1_zps48bbfa7e.jpg

 

imagejpg2_zps7cb239f1.jpg

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well, I just ordered 10 cutter inserts from ebay seller azcarbide, I guess I'll be making a couple sets of turning tools, this forum is killin me  :D

 

I have been trying to talk myself into buying some better turning tools, just to many things higher on the list, this looked like a fun project

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I have the full set of easy wood tools and the radiused square one is the one I use most by far, but I do mostly spindle turning (parts for larger furniture).

If I were doing pens Id probably use the detailer a lot too.

Quite honestly, you should get all three. I know that's probably not what you wanna hear :)

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Eventually I want to have to build another building to store all of my lathe tools... But I figured I would start small first. :)

I have the full set of easy wood tools and the radiused square one is the one I use most by far, but I do mostly spindle turning (parts for larger furniture).

If I were doing pens Id probably use the detailer a lot too.

Quite honestly, you should get all three. I know that's probably not what you wanna hear :)

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I didn't see this earlier or I would have said to skip the radius cutter. You have to be very careful with it, if one of those corners catches it will be nasty. The square cutter is great for roughing and flats, you can use the corners without worrying about catches. The round is good for coves, I have no luck with it as a finisher. The diamond is useful at times but again, be careful with those corners, nasty catches. The radius cutter isn't better at anything the others can do and it catches easily.

.

 

hiTQYifl.jpg

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The carbide tips I ordered came in today, so I made some holders, now if I could only find someone to turn me some handles so I can use them  :D

 

4BCDB212-2918-477E-AEFF-7082497EEC07_zps

 

just take a dowl rod drill a hole in it for tor handles then you can use your new holders to make actual handles that you can epoxy in place.  little bit of hassle but it wont be that much work.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I use a short, stout carbide tool called the Woodchuck Pen Pro. It is short, but uses 1/2" square stock so it is very easy to control on your tool rest. I exclusively use the radius-end square cutters. In my case, those are the R4, so they have a 4" radius on the edge. Looks perfectly square from a distance. I suppose the R2 would be fine, just a little more curvature. I've not found a need on pens since I use slight tapers at the most. You can cut anything with them, from wood to acrylic. A radius-end cutter allows for smoothing and curves, the square helps to cut perfectly square tenons. I disagree that radius-end cutters are grabby (at least for me) -- they were designed for allowing slight curves on bowls and spindles. Although I plan to make my own long carbide tool, I've used my little Pen Pro on heavy turning on peppermills.

Also, if your handy with metal, carbide tools are easy to make. Square tool stock is cheap. Check YouTube for how-tos. One video I watched showed making one using a hacksaw to cut relief, and then filing it smooth. You will need a tap to thread a drilled hole for the hold-down screw. A very reasonable place to get cutters is azcarbide.com

With square stock, you probably want to make your own handle. Cut blank in half, rout a stopped dado at ends of both pieces, and glue together to make a blank with a square recess. Your live center will hold the square recess while turning.

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  • 1 year later...

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