this is getting a litte too exciting and a Talon chuck question

Discussion in 'Newbie' started by hu lowery, Apr 10, 2013.

  1. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    at least you have a bowl to show


    Bill,

    My first two attempts were near enough the bottom of my shavings that they now rest on the top of my burn pile. Maybe I should have some kind of a ceremony or maybe I should just place my Reeves drive on top of the pile and let things rip! The thing took a dump this evening, less than ten hours run time since I tore it down. I guess I need to look into the proper lubricant for the half pulleys on the shaft and I will do a more thorough job on the sanding this time too. I took it apart and put it together without a puller last time, I'll construct one this time. Something else I don't want to take too many chances with.

    The sun burst through the line of storms for a few minutes this evening and I felt the need to turn. Went up the road and got 4 six foot sections of cherry log. It was a tree last week, wet to say the least. I cut a section off that might make a bowl and then grabbed the next piece to turn. It was heavier than expected and with balance issues a concern and my bandsaw seventy miles up the road I went on and leveled an end a bit and put a faceplate on with four 1/4" lag bolts, about 1-1/4" into the wood. The bark is very well attached, I will have to try a natural rim soon from this. A pretty good shake to the lathe at low speed so I got out my small reciprocating saw to trim it. Then I got out my chainsaw to trim it. Spun like a top after that.

    I'm having a little trouble taking end grain from rough sawn and at an angle to flat and smooth. I'll have to watch video, don't know if I am doing something wrong or there just isn't any quick way to do it. Then I am rounding the corner from the tailstock end of the bowl forward, out of the way of anything going south. Then peel the bark off in a few passes. Once I was cutting nothing but sapwood that stuff cut like wax, could have scooped it off with a spoon. That changed a little when I got down to heart wood but still not bad. Soon after my machine started making unhappy sounds and quit working. The tiny belt that goes to what looks like a governer on the front had hopped off because a pulley had came loose and moved. The lower sheave on the variable drive is stuck open too, no joy in Mudville tonight!

    I guess I will have to snap a picture of bowls one and two on the burn pile for posterity. This is bowl three. The problem is it was a goblet. The pith was nonexistent at the top of my end grain blank, fairly small and to one side on bottom. I knew it might be an issue but I was turning to learn and wanted to cut. Got down to making the stem small and discovered the pith was far larger there and absolutely shattered long ago brown wood.

    None of my stuff is sanded well when it isn't a keeper. I do know how to sand to get a finish, body work again, but I'm not doing that much work without power tools for these stinkers!

    Hu
     

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  2. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    You should save your first bowl or pieces of it whichever the case. It will serve as a reminder of your progress. It seems to be some sort of unstated requirement that woodturners save one of their first pieces that can be recognized as at least an attempt to make a bowl. Their purpose is not for bragging rights -- it's more like self-deprecation.

    Fundamentally, there is nothing wrong with Reeves drives that are properly made which usually means machined cast iron. However, woodturning lathes with Reeves drives made in the last ten years or so are cheaply made and ought to be against the law. My first lathe was a Delta 1440 Iron Bed lathe. It had a Reeves drive. During the first few years, it spent more time being repaired than being used to turn wood. The good news is that Delta provided me with any and all parts that I requested free-of-charge. I spent a lot of time making design improvements and wrote a lot about my investigations and design upgrades on this forum as well as Sawmill Creek and Wood Online. These improvements even included machining improved parts for the yoke assembly. However, the fatal flaw in the deign was the die cast zinc variable pulleys. They were far too fragile for this application and there was no mod that could sufficiently remedy that. If you do a search using my name and Reeves drive, you can probably find some of the threads.

    As soon as the lathe went out of production, they quit supporting it. The remnants of that lathe sits in my shop. I started a project to rebuild it using an electronic variable speed drive, but the project went into hibernation after I got my Robust American Beauty lathe. It is the ultimate dream machine. Mine has all the bells and whistles and weighs close to a thousand pounds as currently equipped.

    One of the best videos on bowl turning is by Bill Grumbine. He has two videos -- the first one covers the basics and the second has some more advanced information. His videos are both entertaining and enlightening. I highly recommend getting at least the one covering the basics.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2013
  3. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    Thanks!


    Bill,

    I will dig for everything you have written on the Reeves drive before I attack it after getting some sleep. I do have cast iron pulleys on this old Craftsman. It takes very little rust to freeze the pulley but I'm wondering if a bad signal from the governer might be the issue. I have no clue how that part works other than it has a set of points, I suspect to shut down things. The lower pulley with the yoke is the one not closing maybe I won't even have to pull the top, hey I can dream!

    I have been talking to Bill Grumbine a little, another very nice and helpful guy! I was interested in seeing the Vega in action used by someone who was a master woodturner so he managed to find me a copy of his second DVD which is on it's way now. The first one probably would have been a better one for me to learn from but in typical fashion I am already planning a year or two down the road, maybe a lot sooner if I decide that smaller Vega bowl lathe is a viable step. Seems like a lot of bang for the buck but might be running entirely off of step pulleys, I'm not sure.

    Seems I will end up with one of the unconventional lathes or spend a bunch of time turning outboard to be able to get to things. May find myself working seated a good bit. That really seems to be the ticket from the little testing I have done, some work standing, some seated. That would require an easy way to raise and lower the lathe if I'm just using one but I don't think that would be too tough to set up. A lot of long range planning for someone that hasn't turned their first bowl yet! I do like the early impression I have of this cherry. Between rotten pecan and the cedar I don't know if I have given myself much chance to succeed so far. In some respects I have been focused more on process than finished product. One of my first bowls did blow up, the other broke in half and is still thick enough to glue and return. The spalted pecan one. Notice the beautiful cast iron base it is sitting on! :D

    Hu
     

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  4. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Pretty piece of wood.

    I may harvest some pecan wood if I can find the time. My brother is a pecan grower and lost around 100 trees due to the severe drouth last year. I told him to save a few for me, but he has been dozing and burning most of them.
     
  5. MichaelMouse

    MichaelMouse

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    The bird business is from somewhere else. I say snug when things don't move any more because gaps are closed where contact can be developed. With the ribbed jaws, you have to have a bit of bite to keep things from pulling out, because if you get the nose of the jaws off the shoulder, they will. Thus the 1/4 turn. Danger in squashing is that you push the nose off the shoulder. Oneway is proud of that design, but the ribs were still symmetrical wedges last time I held one. Pushes wood both ways. Dovetail doesn't.

    Photobucket is OTL this morning, but I can post some video of digging with the bowl gouge if you're interested. They also show the between centers method for stabilizing while hollowing. I can't follow the description of the rolling gouge business above, however. With the pressure on the lower inside of the flute, my shaving wants to rotate the gouge clockwise inside the bowl when cutting rim to bottom. That is a safe direction, rather than counter clockwise, which might catch. In general, however, if you keep air above the gouge as you cut, you shouldn't catch. Means belly of gouge above center out, below center inside.
     
  6. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    thanks!


    Michael,

    Thanks for the explanation of snug, it means much different things to different people and in different areas of endeavor. I did find that last failed tenon. Sharp marks in the tenon, no slippage or movement, the structural integrity of the cedar failed. Could easily have been a hidden crack and there were streaks of sapwood in it. Of the eight places the jaw bit, one place the wood failed. I have to believe that was not an issue though or the marks would not be sharp and clean in the other positions. Wish I had my decent camera working, I can't get good enough pictures with the cell to post.

    I always welcome more video. I don't always quite understand and then watching one more makes everything clear or one more thing said makes everything clear.

    One issue I have is not being able to grind, my tools would work better inside with a different nose profile. Another is the all 5/8" diameter tooling, I notice far better turners than I am swap to smaller tooling inside the bell of a vessel. Finally, sometimes I just need to stop and nuke things out. In one respect turning and hollowing is very simple. As much as possible I need to keep the direction of force on the tool through the centerline of the tool and directly down into the tool rest. The cutting edge needs a space to escape into if it does start to catch. Those two simple things would keep me out of trouble.

    Of course the trick is in the execution. I'm getting better but it looks like today will be spent getting things together and working on the Reeves drive instead of working on a bowl for show and tell tomorrow. Just the way things go, another meeting next month. The way the need to turn hit yesterday afternoon I'm starting to think I may need to go to weekly meetings of a different kind. "Hello my name is Hu, I am addicted to shavings . . ."

    Edit: The Reeves drive lives! Just the threat of infernal combustion was enough to make it straighten up and fly right. Guess I turn today after all.

    Hu
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2013
  7. MichaelMouse

    MichaelMouse

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    This is slow and she's shooting too low, but you can follow the ejection angle of the shavings, the shape of the opposite edge and the swing to see how the cut progresses. http://s108.photobucket.com/user/MichaelMouse/media/HollowOne001.mp4.html You swing the tool so that the tip is stabbing to enter, preventing the "skating" mentioned by a critic in another thread, then roll the gouge CCW slightly to grab the shaving you want as you advance the nose. Little bit of practice on pull cuts will show you how to keep the shavings from running around the U and into your face.

    Faster, and with a bit of material out of the way for a better look. http://s108.photobucket.com/user/MichaelMouse/media/HollowTwo001.mp4.html The entry and roll you see working center out is the same as the rim in method. That big old knot with the mineral stain dulled the daylights out of the gouge, or the video might have been a bit longer. I think that's one reason you see people reaching for other gouges. If the one in use is starting to rip, grab an sharper one from the rack. It's not necessarily the opening available, though I grind my smaller so they will cut a bit steeper than the big ones.

    Main thing is to swing the tool into and through imbalanced/irregular shapes even to the point of exit, rather than try to stuff the gouge in there, push, and force the issue. Only move ahead when you have some circularity to bump up against where you've been.

    Your analysis of cuts is spot on. I find the broad sweep constant angle bevel gouges work beautifully with that procedure.

    This is what, I think, someone else was talking about when they talked about the tool rotating and catching. Cut is on the wrong side of the tool, though the angle of the grind effectively skews it to slip under. If you have shorter edge grinds, you can work a bit more safely, otherwise, it's a technique of convenience only for me. http://s108.photobucket.com/user/MichaelMouse/media/PillarSmall.mp4.html

    Remember to tighten your toolrest, unlike the dummy in the first clip. :eek: You can follow the cut on the opposite side while standing erect rather than twisting and bending your back and risking your face by leaning in. Eyes there, and tactile feedback are a good combination.
     
  8. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    It looks like there might be a bowl in there somewhere . . .

    Here is my work in progress with the cherry. It sat overnight, indoors, then I wrapped it in a towel and took it to the woodturners meeting in a zipped canvas bag. Still starting to crack by this afternoon so I turned on it. Nothing fancy, there is a slight taper inwards towards the top but it is heavy and square looking and the walls are thick. A little over five inches wide and should finish about four inches tall. Still trying to stay very conservative with it and just make a finished bowl. Ran out of time and get up & go tonight so I wiped it down with mineral oil to hopefully soak in a bit, slung some butchers block oil on it, and wished it luck until tomorrow. Have only sanded sixty grit. If it holds it's shape well I might turn a little more. If not, sand, turn a lollipop, and clean up the bottom and call the first one done. It will leave plenty of room for improvement!


    Michael,

    Thanks a bunch for the video links and the good information in your post. I will watch the video and reread everything tomorrow. Everything pretty much a blur tonight after a very long day.

    Pretty sure this is bowl #5. Maybe the fifth time will be the charm!

    Hu
     

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  9. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    If it holds water then it's a bowl. ;)

    I do not recall ever turning cherry so I have no idea how it behaves. However, the abrupt change in slope from the bottom to the side may be a contributor to cracks developing. Turning thin is normally a good way to minimize cracking, but it also means more movement during drying. Keeping the wood moist between turning sessions is my strategy to minimize cracking. I have a spray bottle to mist the wood and then wrap it up in a plastic grocery sack. There is no need to tightly seal the sack.

    Maple is a nice wood to turn since the grain is even and it does not warp much. Don't pass up free wood even if is is not the most desirable, at the very least it should be good for practice. I just got some cottonwood from a home that is about to be burned down. I don't know what it might be like, but I'll find out. I suspect that it will be soft and fuzzy.
     
  10. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    Fighting the end grain

    Bill,

    While I know the end grain is always tougher to cut than the side grain this cherry seems to take that to extremes. The sapwood cuts fantastic, the heartwood substantially tougher, then I am really wrestling with the end grain. Wants to tear with more than a feather touch and I have to sharpen every couple of minutes. My tools are in bad need of regrinding, I think I can climb over stuff to get a grinder with a white wheel out of storage. It has a baseplate mounted that indicates a sharpening system, probably a Wolverine missing or lost. That song is getting pretty old! I have watched Bill Grumbine's DVD three times now, it is a help. Fixing to drag my laptop by my lathe and see how it likes a few chips.

    I am not ready to move my bandsaw so I may have to spend a day sawing bowl blanks where it is at to be able to turn these across the grain. As mentioned the balance was just too bad to turn cross grain without cutting it round. The cherry is heavy, this is native cherry not orchard stuff so it may be completely different. I can't remember it making any fruit but it does make tons of little white flowers so it might make a tiny berry or cherry too.

    The abrupt change was annoying to deal with, didn't think about it causing structural issues too. I have some meat down there so I may be able to reshape a good bit. Almost three in the morning and it has been raining for hours, 70% tomorrow so my open air shop may not be usable. One issue being a born again bachelor, house keeping! I live alone so I won't mention any names but somebody has been scattering wood chips everywhere inside. Thinking about an apron to catch some of them. Somebody needs to run a vacuum cleaner indoors, afraid that someone will be me!

    My lathe is on a bench right now but I'm finding the only way to get an angle I can work with using these tools with short bevels is to climb on the bench for hollowing or since this headstock swivels, once I have to quit using the tailstock anyway I turn it a few degrees outboard for access while still being able to leave the banjo and toolrest mounted normally.

    Got to shut down the computer, been running on battery for the last few hours to protect from lightning and the battery looks to be about dead.

    Hu


     
  11. CTutor

    CTutor

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    Cedar

    When the bowl took off did the tenon stay with the bowl or is it stuck in the chuck. If stuck in the chuck jaws you probably "cut" into the tenon with the jaws. On occasion when I turn a soft wood that prone to split I put CA glue around the tenon to give it strength and stabilize it.

    Not familiar with the Talon but does it have tapered or straight jaws? If tapered are you certain you did not kind of dig into the bottom of the tenon when you put the taper. Make the shoulder at the tenon base truly flat and wide enough to support the jaws?

    Sometimes even before I start turning a piece of problematical wood I put a coat of lacquer or sanding sealer all around the bowl. Some woods just need more support then others. Finally I always keep my tail stock up tight until I must back it off to start hollowing. I generally shape the outside of a BE bowl close to finish before I attempt to holow and always keep the tail stock up until I have to move it out of the way.
     
  12. robo hippy

    robo hippy

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    Well, I came into this one late. Cedar tends to split easily, Check! Tenon was the right diameter, Check! Chuck was snugged up, and not over tightened? Not sure about that one. Do snug it up in each key a couple of times, more important for big (12 inch and above diameter). Tenon might have been too long: from a class with Stuart Batty, he commented that almost bottoming out puts more stress on the tenon, and makes it more likely to crack: 1/4 to 3/16 inch deep is plenty. If it was wobbling while turning, some thing is loose. I have found the set screws on the chuck jaws can loosen up. I don't use locktite on them though, even though I have chucks with dedicated sets of jaws that I never change out. If it starts out spinning true, and then starts to wobble, that means some thing is loose, and loose things tend to go into orbit.

    robo hippy
     
  13. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Mike Mahoney said the same thing except he seems to like an even shorter tenon if using dovetail jaws. Imagine them agreeing? :D Actually they are good buds and enjoy ribbing each other. We have had both of them here at our club for classes and they were together at SWAT a few years ago doing their "Two Ways to Turn a Bowl" program. Additionally, Mike likes to expand the jaws way out even to the point of removing the roll pin that limits maximum expansion to something safe. ;)

    Actually, a longer tenon has less stress than a short one because the total tightening force is the same for a long and short tenon, but the force is spread over a larger surface area. It sounds like Stu is also believing that the dovetail angle is leading to longitudinal force. In actuality fiction prevents this from happening. Maybe if the wood was Teflon® coated ...

    I didn't agree with his rationale on a couple points, but there is no point trying to tell a pro who has turned thousands of bowls and other stuff that either his rationale might have flaws even if the method is valid or that maybe sometimes they are mistaken, but skilled enough to not have issues.

    The two points where I do not fully agree are:

    1. Dovetail jaws are better than the Oneway design that uses the ridges with a wave design. They probably are for the short tenon that Mike makes, but the story that he gives doesn't hold water -- if the grip loosens, it will pull the tenon inwards and tighter against the shoulder of the dovetail jaws.
      • There is only one diameter where this might be true, but even then the tenon would still be loose because the chuck jaws are a position holding device and not a force holding device like a spring clamp.
      • At the wide open position that he uses for the jaws, there are only eight sharp points of contact and they are digging into the tenon. If something happens to cause the wood to move then the tenon will be damaged by the sharp edges and the alleged benefits of a dovetail jaw won't happen. With the extremely short tenon used, the slight dovetail angle is hardly worth mentioning. He does keep the tailstock against the work so that reduces problems considerably.
      • I do agree that the way that he (and Stu Batty) make their short tenons that the Oneway style jaws are not as good at holding unless the tenon is lengthened at least 1/4 inch.
    2. Mike said that the serrated jaws crush the wood fibers and push the tenon shoulder away from the top of the jaws. I have not found that to be the case except when the wood is punky and probably shouldn't have been held in a chuck anyway. My observation is that the marks made by the jaws are barely visible. Also there is no way that the serrations could push the tenon shoulder away from the top of the jaws unless the tenon could stretch. I have wished for a board stretcher sometimes after cutting a board short, but I do not think that such a thing exists. There is no rational explanation for say that that a tenon would tend to move away from (or towards) the jaws. Same thing applies to dovetail jaws (the friction is too great and the dovetail angle is too shallow).
    I have used short tenons on occasion (such as when using store bought wood), but I usually a make a nice tenon that is 5/16 to 7/16 inches long.

    One of the things that I like about Oneway chucks is that the angle of the screw heads and the countersink angles are slightly different so that they tightly friction lock. That is why there is a snap sound when removing the screws. Some folks have taken that to mistakenly assume that there is a defect causing the screws to seize. Additionally, Oneway uses copper filled grease to lube the threads. This enables tightening more than a dry thread would permit using the same torque.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2013
  14. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    A little more info

    First off, I found some information I didn't have before, the piece was too big and heavy for this lathe. Even as well dried as it was it was considerably thicker than they recommend and out of balance when I first started turning. Compounding this my old work bench was screwed together without glue twenty years ago and getting a bit wobbly. I have loosened the joints and added glue now but that had to add a little to the whip once the piece started moving. A new work bench is pretty high on my list of priorities. I have several in my shop but I think I am going to build a stand to support this lathe with good access, and add 300-400 pounds of concrete block ballast.

    The tenon broke off and is beside me as I type. It was totally wood failure. Next time I won't tackle as large a piece and I will take many more steps to reinforce even slightly questionable wood. I was ignorant of some characteristics of this local cedar that makes it even worse than some to try to turn, especially after sitting drying for years. Pretty much a laundry list of all the things you can do wrong, I did, and finding a few more each day!

    One issue is this lathe resembles the cast iron Jets and mustard lathes in the midsize and it doesn't seem to have near the strength and guts from what I read and see. Firmly mounting to a rigid bench would no doubt make it better, but I am coming to a better understanding of it's limitations. Coming from a metal lathe background I thought it was a little stouter.

    I did tighten the chuck quite firmly but since the marks in the cedar are comparatively shallow that doesn't seem to have been a factor. The depth of the tenon was about 7/16", pretty much as deep as I could make it and still see that it wasn't bottomed out which I knew was bad.

    With hindsight, this wood was something an experienced turner would have approached with caution. They wouldn't have put this big of a piece on this lathe, and they would have taken steps to reinforce both the tenon and overall piece if they did elect to turn this wood. Of course they would have shut down and found the wobble or threw away the piece when they didn't too. I did put a good bit of force on the piece looking for movement between it and the chuck with the lathe off just a few minutes before it broke so the crack was only apparent in the piece at turning speed then.

    My jaws are the new design wave profiled jaws, it is a brand new Talon. It grips with wave shaped ridges in eight places around the tenon. Looking at the tenon again this morning, the tooth marks in the tenon are still very sharp and clean, the tenon did not move in the jaws before parting and the noses of the jaws were firmly against a shoulder.

    My major issues were that I overloaded the lathe with an out of balance unsafe piece. I also had catches that a better turner wouldn't have had sending shocks through the piece. I suspect that someone with their ducks in a row could have turned this piece without problems but probably would have known better than to try.

    A bunch of rookie mistakes. Fortunately I am used to turning metal on lathes and occasionally out of balance stuff so I mostly maintained good positions turning the piece. I am also being cautious positioning the tool rest so a piece can't get a good start in my direction whenever possible.

    Thanks for your contribution to this thread. I'm learning from every post!



    Much of my reply above answers yours also but to recap the list: Cedar splits easily: I knew this in theory. However I have no experience to understand what this really means in terms of what stresses and strains one wood can take and another can't. "Easily" can be as hard to define as snug if you don't have further reference points. No sugar coating it, I didn't.

    The tenon and chucking questions I am going to lump together. These new design wave jaws fit a wide range of tenon sizes equally well and equally poorly. Unlike most jaws there is not an optimum diameter that offers significantly more contact than others. The tenon was 2-3/4" diameter. If I had it to do over after seeing the jaw prints this chuck leaves behind I would have made it bigger although I don't think that would have prevented this trainwreck, just better practice with these jaws. I don't want them almost fully extended fearing scroll thread failure but three to three and a quarter tenons will be gripped with pretty much the same strength as a smaller size in these wave jaws, maybe even more. I haven't really delved into the theoretical best size tenon for these wave jaws but at a quick guess it might well be bigger than the biggest opening they extend to.

    I clearly overtightened the jaws if dealing with most wood. This wood was so hard that the jaws show little penetration nor does it appear that the crack could have started where a jaw bit in. A mistake, but probably not a factor here.

    The tenon was too deep in the jaws according to Stuart Batty. To be honest, this doesn't jib with anrything I know about chucking from working with other materials, as long as the piece doesn't bottom out and the nose of the jaws rest solidly against the main body of the piece I'm just going to keep an open mind about this one until I learn why he said that. Not disagreeing or agreeing, I don't have enough info to understand why he made that statement.

    The wobble: No getting around it, a dumb move ignoring it when I couldn't locate it. That is even something that I know better than from turning other things. This was flat a stupid mistake that I should have known better than. More than the "fools rush in" other errors I made this one galls me. I don't make many stupid mistakes that I know better than doing. I can't even plead ignorance here, carelessness, recklessness, thoughtlessness, none of the things I would like to admit to. I knew better and didn't think at that time.

    A little information you might verify and give a try if you agree. Threads never make full contact in a threaded hole, varies with the hole and the fastener but you probably have 15% or more noncontact in those jaw screws. Putting the light duty blue Loctite, the original I believe, fills that void and usually prevents screws from loosening under shock and vibration. Because it also prevents corrosion and galling, it is often easier to loosen threads that have been together for a long time that were put together with Loctite than those with nothing. There are about a dozen Loctite thread compounds now, years ago when working in R&D I knew them all. I have slept a bunch of times since then though so I don't remember which is which. Put the wrong one on the threads and it takes a lot more heat than anyone wants to use on a chuck to free the threads. I think there is even a lighter duty one than the one I recommend too, little more than joint compound but that still gives more consistent tightening and prevents galling and corrosion in the threads.

    The jaw screws were tight when this happened, I checked them three or four times during my early usage of the chuck and after this event too. I always suspect movement in new equipment.

    Thank you for your contribution too! I do value every post and every one adds to my knowledge. I have to find out about that tenon depth deal now. It will bug me until I know why he says a short one is better than a long one.

    Hu
     
  15. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Hu, maybe somebody in your turning club is familiar with balancing a piece of wood that is only in rough chainsaw form. It is much harder to describe in words than to show visually. Basically, the intent is to statically balance the wood between centers and then do some rough shaping like knocking off some of the corners and making a tenon on one end.

    Start by putting a point center in both the headstock and tailstock. I use a live center in the tailstock and a dead center in the headstock, but anything where only a point at each end is contacting the wood will work. Tighten the tailstock just enough to hold the piece between centers. If necessary use a spring punch to make a dimple in hard wood. The wood will rotate so that the heavy side is down. Mark the lowest point with a pencil and then shift one of the ends upwards a bit and recheck the balance. After several iterations, the wood should be balanced so that it does not have a heavy side. That is the desired balanced position. Mark the two centers -- remove the wood and use a spur drive and a wooden mallet to set the spurs. Remount the piece using the spur drive and live center and start the lathe at the slowest speed to verify that the wood is properly balanced. If everything is OK, knock off the high spots with a bowl gouge and very very light cuts. When you are cutting mostly air, it is easy to poke the tool into a gap and knock the wood off the lathe. Next, turn a tenon or recess on one end. It is generally easier to do this at the tailstock end. I generally continue removing wood until I have something a bit larger than the outside shape of the turning before removing the piece and mounting it on a chuck. I keep the tailstock live center in contact until I am almost finished turning the piece.
     
  16. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    Thanks again Bill!


    Bill,

    The turning club seems to be mostly members who have already reached a nice skill level. While plenty courteous they weren't welcoming to a newcomer. I have worked my way into a handful of cliques over the years but doing the math the twenty-five dollar membership isn't bad, the over two hundred dollars a year motor full bill to go to the meetings leaves things very debatable. Looks like they come, watch a demo, buy a few supplies that the club or somebody buys in volume, and boogie. I would rather watch a video that I can replay than a demo that I have difficulty hearing and seeing.

    The help I get here and in other forums, net video, and dvds looks like what I will have to work with. Fortunately I think that will be enough. I am very familiar with balancing things in general, your words were more than adequate to tell me the particulars of balancing on the lathe. I was going to try to static balance the wood by hanging it from a cord to get closer since the lathe is too tight to turn to give an idea of balance. Putting it between centers as you recommend is far better. I only have one live center and a drive center at the moment but that can be dealt with. Just realized as I type, the chuck screw for mounting wood will work just fine as a center without a hole drilled for it to fit into. Not perfect but plenty good enough!

    The talent and experience of the people responding to this thread in the newbie section was unexpected. The patience too. You and the others have immensely shortened my "hard knocks" learning curve already. Not that I don't still have tons to learn but this one thread has improved my procedures in at least a half-dozen areas without taking time to count. I an genuinely a bit overwhelmed about the amount of help so freely given.

    Hu
     
  17. robo hippy

    robo hippy

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    Longer tenon weaker: I think, not positive here, that the theory is the joint where the tenon and bowl meet, which sits on the jaws is kind of a hinge. Tool pressure pushes one way, and the chuck resists the other way. Especially, if the tenon does not exactly match the angle of the jaws, it can rock. If it starts to rock, then it can split. If you have a shorter tenon, then this is a bit less of a problem.

    Softer woods, like fir, cedar and pine don't have the structural strength to hold up to abuse. You have to be more gentle with them. One other point is lining the jaws up with the grain. If you have 2 jaws on the end grain, and 2 on the side grain, the side grain ones will loosen up. End grain compresses very little, and side grain compresses a lot. This is even more so with green wood. If you rotate the piece 45 degrees, so the open space between the jaws line up with the end grain, you get more even compression. Metal will get almost no measurable compression, so a longer grip will stabilize some pieces.

    Hard woods like oak, locust, or osage tend to be brittle, and more prone to splitting if you have a catch.

    Medium woods like the fruit woods and soft maples are much more forgiving.

    Not sure about the serrated Oneway jaws. I use the dove tail jaws exclusively. Main reason is that is is an adjustable locking wedge joint. The wedge gives a mechanical advantage. This is more secure, especially when the angles are very close. I prefer a recess to a tenon. There is debate about which holds better, and as near as I can tell, they both hold fine if they are made correctly:angles match, diameters are close, and they are the proper size. Tenon about 1/4 the diameter. Recess, Well, I use 2 5/8 inches on bowls up to about 16 inch diameter, and it works great for heavy roughing and coring.

    robo hippy
     
  18. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    I was a beginner about nine years ago when I joined a turning club so now I have viewed the issue of mentoring from both sides and will offer my thoughts. We are a fairly large club with around 130 members. We get several new members every month as well as some visitors who are just curious about turning and each person comes with their own expectations. When I first joined, I was really impressed by all of the talent. Jean-François Escoulen was the demonstrator, someone had turned a hat, etc. However, there was no stampede of folks wanting to mentor me. There was so much going on, it was hard to cram everything into the allotted time frame at the community center. However, during all of the announcements, newbies were encouraged to collar an officer or any member and talk about what they are interested in learning. Visitors and new members were also introduced during the announcements at the beginning of the meeting and encouraged to tell something about their turning interests. Somebody spoke to me and mentioned the various opportunities for learning. Maybe that was not the best way to approach outreach, but finding the exact right approach is not a one-size-fits-all I was soon to discover.

    Some visitors are hesitant to ask for mentoring because they may feel like they are imposing on other people's personal time and to a very large degree, it works the other way too. After a few meetings, it finally registered with me that there was an almost monthly get-together at the shop of one of the professional turners in the club (the founder) and they almost pleaded with newbies like me to take advantage of that opportunity for learning. For some unknown reason, I put off doing that for several months. I suppose that they could have sent a band of turners to to drag me there, but that might be viewed as a bit too aggressive by timid folks.

    After about a half year, I arrived at a heretofore undiscovered notion -- that the way to get the most benefit out of being a member was to become more involved. Instead of being a spectator, I might actually do some actual real honest-to-goodness work (sorry about the "w" word). The newsletter editor wanted to pass the mantle off to someone else and for some reason I raised my hand -- or maybe somebody else raised my hand -- it's all a blur so I don't remember for certain. I looked around he room in panic and there were no other hands in the air. A vote was taken on the spot and I was off to the races. The difference between being a participant and a spectator was monumental because it put the onus on me rather than expecting to be catered to like royalty.

    I learned that the board had been wrestling with ways to improve outreach and the biggest obstacle from the other side of the fence was attracting/luring/coercing folks to come to mentoring sessions. A lot of people get spooked when collared one-on-one -- I know because I have been on both sides of that dilemma. The board found that there were various reasons for beginners being hesitant to participate in mentoring and perhaps the most common reason was that they felt that they needed to first improve their skills or else mentoring would not "take".

    As a new turner, I offered my views which seemed to be well received by the other graybeard board members. A new program was eventually developed to have periodic (four to six times per year) mentoring sessions on about six or seven topics at various member's shops. This was in addition to other turning mentoring activities that were already being done. Even with all of this, we found that many beginners did not take advantage of what was being offered. So, the bottom line is that this is a tough nut to crack, but it works best when both newbie and "expert" put an effort into making things happen. A turning club is just a bunch of guys like you and me who take the initiative to accomplish goals. It can be a formidable task if only a few people are the "workers" and the rest are watchers. Some folks volunteer from day one and others never do. I think that I know which people derive the greatest benefit.

    I think that I am fortunate to have found such a good club. It is unrealistic to expect all clubs to have the same degree of involvement. Some clubs offer more opportunities than ours does and some less. I think that sometimes smaller clubs have some advantages such as closer interaction with beginners and some limitations in what they can accomplish because of less financial resources to bring in big name turners. I think tat our club has been reasonably successful in fulfilling the wants and needs of our members.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2013
  19. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    OK, I won't disagree until I hear the reason. :D
     
  20. hu lowery

    hu lowery

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    tenons and clubs

    Deleted the old title then couldn't think what I wanted to put for a new one. Tenons and clubs kind of go together, just not this kind of club!

    Bill,

    Good clubs are great and belonging to a good one makes you think highly of them. This club is probably a good enough club, just a poor fit for me and what I was hoping to find in a club. Out of fifty people more or less, not one said hello or introduced themselves including the club officials. They didn't even talk to each other for the most part when the meeting ended. Looked like folks that were all strangers and had been ordered to a meeting by the court!

    The demo was about finials and I have a thousand dollars or so worth of wood that would make great finials sitting in my barn, exotics and lots of straight grain hard maple that cue shafts are made out of. Anyone offering help would have got some nice gifts. Had someone even seemed friendly or outgoing in the slightest I would have requested them take a quick look at my tools and chuck that I had with me. Any offer of additional help would have resulted in goodies from me, only fair. Getting thoroughly ignored by all wasn't all bad though, my membership dues stayed in my pocket! I may join this club somewhere down the line but it won't be for aid getting started.


    Thanks! Another thing to remember, grain orientation when chucking. Because these jaws grab in eight place around the wood I haven't considered it. The marks seem evenly deep so it might be a nonissue anyway but certainly worth a thought. I'll try to make that a habit when chucking.

    The new chucks normally come with the #2 wave jaws. I'm pretty sure I could have gotten the #2 tapered jaws for the same dollars. I saw pluses and minuses to both so just let them send the most common.

    Talking tenon length and any movement between the piece and the chuck jaws those talking taper jaws and those talking the ribbed jaws are talking apples and oranges. Any movement at all in the ribbed jaws is likely to be a trainwreck soon. The tapered jaws do have the stronger hold against the piece coming totally free. The ribbed jaws might have an edge in primary grip strength but once something starts to move it is pretty much gone. The tapered jaws will let something move without flying free, particularly if the tenon is the optimum size for maximum contact. A tenon or recess could be stronger depending on the piece. I agree either one is plenty adequate in solid wood.

    I almost instinctively don't want the sharp corner at the base of a tenon for either chuck but most particularly the taper. Sharp inside corners are stress points and to be avoided whenever possible.

    I'm pressing the piece directly into the jaws with one hand and tightening with the other hand but I think I'll start applying more even pressure with the tailstock.

    First bowl is finally on the shelf. Not much to recommend it except it will hold water, maybe. Next bowl is back to holding sideways. Maybe a natural rim? That cherry bark is on there tight right now, seems a natural. I can't seem to get away from tight and deep bowls, thinking I might turn a shallow wide one just for a change. No idea what I like to turn yet.

    Hu

    Bill, a quick note here: I am big on volunteering. Anytime somebody was out from work a day or missed a meeting when a volunteer was needed; "Bill was telling me just the other day that he wanted to do that." Attendence on the job and in meetings picked up considerably and I didn't dare miss one myself. There were a lot of people with payback on their minds!
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2013

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