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Outboard Vs Inboard Turning

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I was wondering how many people prefer to turn outboard vs inboard and do you use tailstock for support or do you usually chuck/screw/glue up and go? I know some people really prefer to turn outboard because when bowl turning you can have added mobility because the ways of the lathe bed are not in your way. Let me know what you prefer. Thanks, Vince
 
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Outboard

Vince,
I suppose I turn outboard. I have a Nova DVR that allows the headstock to be rotated to 22.5 degrees and this is what I usually do. It saves me removing the tailstock and allows full access without the bed getting in the way. I use my tool rest in the normal bed banjo. With very large items I always rotate to 90 degrees and use the proper outboard turning tool post.

I hope this helps.

Colin
 
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Piece gets "added mobility" easily when you turn outboard or at the end. Which is why I don't do it even when I'm on a lathe capable unless there's some superfine piece of wood involved. Shorter handles on the tools and a touch different grind allow me to cut pretty much anything with my elbow comfortably loose at spindle height. Rather than bend, I follow the cut on the opposite side of the piece.

Little clearer to me at that distance anyway, given the presbyopia
 

hockenbery

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I begin my bowls and hollow forms between centers so that I can align the grain pattern, the rim edge in a natural edge piece, or the void openings hollow forms.

Grain alignment is one more dimension that sets a finished piece apart from the run of the mill turning. I usually achieve this by adjusting the tailstock location during roughing.

Concentric circles in the bottom of a bark edge rim don't happen by accident.
The hyperbolas centered in the bottom of a bark bottom bowl require alignment.

Happy Turning,
Al
 

john lucas

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I don't turn outboard. I slide the headstock to the end so I can turn the same way but with the lathe rotating normally. I have the powermatic 3520. I like to use this feature to hollow bowls and for hollow turning. It allows me to stand more upright and control the cut with my body. Bending over the lathe to turn in the normal postion requires that I stick my arm out over the lathe and I don't have as precise a control. It is a little hassle sliding the headstock but not any worse than a swiveling headstock and I don't have problem of aligning everything afterword. Also I can slide it down only as far as needed so on longer hollow vessels I can still use my steady rest.
 

Steve Worcester

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I turn outboard when I need to because of size restrictions or when I need unrestricted access. For bowls, I don't need it.

The unrestricted access would be in situations where I am hollowing a piece using Ellsworth or handheld tools that I would need to get under the rim. I can either climb on the lathe bed (ala Ellsworth) or turn outboard. to get the awkward angles.

I do have a tailstock setup for the outboard, but only use it when turning large pieces.
 
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I will say, start a solid piece on a lathe between centers and finish on another lathe from the outboard end. You will hit the bed of the lathe or tailstock if you don't have enough center height to start with.

Vince where you going with this? Are you looking to make a lathe change or keep what you have?
 
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i usedto turn outboard all theime and then I got a bigger lathe and didn't need to.
 
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Thanks for the replys. Georgetroy asked were I was going with this? I have a Oneway 1640 I believe the lathe is a perfect fit for me so I am not looking to change lathes. I usually turn inboard. I have always turned inboard and because I have... that is my comfort zone. I have the outboard extension that I was able to buy at a reduced price. I was not planning on buying an outboard extension but to buy it help the guy who called and it was another toy for me. That was 18 months ago! Till now I have not used it! Why? I cannot tell you!!! Comfort zone thing. LOLOL!
So, I started turning outboard. It is uncomfortable because it is not what I am use too. However, I am starting to experience some benefits from being able to turn outboard. Ex. Being able to look into the piece without having to lean over the lathe as I did in the past, body positioning, etc.
Christian Burshard did a demo for my local club not long ago. If you ever have seen him turn he REALLY sways his body from side to side. He and I were talking and he stated that he always turns outboard. His position was why not if you are able because you can position yourself better and perhaps be more comfortable. It made sense. I know there are other professionals and hobbists that prefer outboard.
I posted the question in part because I have never seen the question posted. Not to say that it never been posted. (If it has I simply missed it.) But I was curious as to what people's thoughts were concerning this topic. Thanks to everyone who replied.
 
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Vince,

I have a Jet 1642, and for hollowing I always turn outboard. On the jet that just means removing the tailstock and sliding the headstock to the tailstock end of the lathe.

I do it anytime I holllow because it is SO much more comfortable in terms of body position. You mentioned the one demo you saw where the turner really used his body to make the cut? Same thing for me. A lot more comfortable than leaning over the lathe or straddling it ala Ellsworth.

One little item. David Ellsworth recently spent some time with our club doing a workshop day. While there he suggested those of us turning outboard look at angling our toolrest rather than keeping it parallel to the face of the workpiece. As you face the workpiece, the left edge of the toolrest was angled so it was closer to you than the right end.

We were all amazed what this little change did for your body position. Your left wrist rotated and became more comfortable, your hips and shoulders rotated into a more comfortable position because of the new wrist position, and because of that whole body change gauging the position of the tool tip inside the form became easier without having to peek inside the form. All of these things added up to a BIG increase in comfort over time. I notice it in my neck and shoulders especially.

Give it a shot and see how you do with it.

Hope this helps.

Dave
 
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Outbord turning

I have a Vicmarc 300 shortbed and one of our club members noted the outbord attachment was set up a lot like the VB 36. So I turned a couple of large bowls outboard and I don't like it because of where the on-off switch is. I have had no luck finding anyone who knows how to wire a remote switch in my lathe. I also had to use a faceplate because the brackets are a little short and with a chuck you have no room to adjust a curved tool rest.

Ron
 
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Spent a few minutes talking with Lyle Jamieson as he was demonstrating his hollowing rig in the Vendor area in Louisville. He made the comment that he never turns "outboard" on any lathe, including a Oneway, because the a) the bearings on the outboard end of the spindle are really not designed for it, and 2) there is too much flex in the extra long tool rest/banjo units being marketed for outboard work. Perhaps this is why P-Matic and others went with the sliding headstock; in order to use the main spindle bearing for all turning.

Just a thought.
 
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I have a VB36 with the short bed, which is basically like turning outboard. I like being able to stand right up near the spining wood in an upright position. I can sway with the tool locked on my hip and maintain good control. I can see into the piece easily too. I also use a Delta Midi where I stand right at the tailstock. The limitation here is the bedways interfering with the tool handle.
 
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My 3 cents worth. It does make a difference. I've done it both ways and now my main lathe is set up as a bowl lathe, with a short (14") dropped bed and no tail stock. The ease and freedom of movement has gotten me real spoiled. And as an added bonus, I never have to stand in the "throw zone".

Two years ago I gave a demo on bowl turning (my first demo ever) and I tried to practice before the demo with a "normal" bed on my lathe. It wasn't pretty. For the demo, I selected a lathe with a pivoting headstock so the blinking bed wouldn't get in my way.
 

john lucas

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Mark All of the lathes I have owned had the same bearings inboard or outboard. I'm not sure about the Powermatic I have now. The Nova Comet does have different bears in size but I don't think they differ in thrust. When I ordered replacements they came with the same specs just different sizes.
what is different sometimes is the way they are installed and captured in place. The inboard side is designed to be pushed against, such as when you are hollowing a bowl and pushing on the bevel. The outboard side may not be set up to do this and you could actually push the spindle out. Not all lathes are designed this way of course but you should keep an eye on the lathe if you do attempt outboard turning.
swiveling and sliding headstocks and shortbed lathes obviously get around this problem.
 
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john lucas said:
Mark All of the lathes I have owned had the same bearings inboard or outboard. I'm not sure about the Powermatic I have now. The Nova Comet does have different bears in size but I don't think they differ in thrust. When I ordered replacements they came with the same specs just different sizes.
what is different sometimes is the way they are installed and captured in place. The inboard side is designed to be pushed against, such as when you are hollowing a bowl and pushing on the bevel. The outboard side may not be set up to do this and you could actually push the spindle out. Not all lathes are designed this way of course but you should keep an eye on the lathe if you do attempt outboard turning.
swiveling and sliding headstocks and shortbed lathes obviously get around this problem.

John,

I agree with you; was just passing on Jamieson's comment "FWIW". With a Stubby 1000, turning "outboard" isn't an issue for me. My second choice lathe was the Poolewood Euro which was/is a rotating-head machine. I turned on Poolewoods when I was in Ellsworth's classes and liked them very much for the mass of the direct-drive motor spindle. Perhaps Silverdrive will get its act together and bring the lathe back to the US market at a competitive price point.

Mark
 
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Vince,

I went from an old Delta 12" "school lathe" to a Oneway 1640 about 4 years ago and as most of my work begins with a bowl, have been turning outboard about 80% if the time. It really saves my back and vision to be able to stand straight and move around the end of the short bed. It is true that it is what I have become comfortable with. I may begin by turning the outside of the piece inboard between centers if the blank is much out of balance and shift the piece to the outboard to turn the interior. I also have a tailstock riser so that I can use the tail stock outboard if it is needed. The 1640 essentially gives me two lathes: a 16" spindle lathe and 24" bowl lathe. Coring is is limited to inboard as there is not enough outboard bed to accommodate chuck, blank, coring base and knife, and tail stock.

In the short of it, my aged and abused back appreciates it most of all.

I use chucks almost exclusively.
 
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