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What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: January 03, 2020 10:09PM

Happy New Year to all!
Roger Wilson recently helped me with the electrical aspect to upgrade my self-built power wrapper to a power wrapper PLUS LATHE as well. It turned out exceptionally well and I am happier than a pig in slop!!! Thanks again, Roger!
For those of you who use a lathe to turn grips in general, cork in particular, what is the most invaluable turning/shaping tool you use? Tom K.’s article, “Lathe Accessories” in Volume 22-Issue 5 of Rodmaker Magazine suggested three tools; roughing gouge, parting tool and round nose scraper. While I certainly do not question Tom’s veteran opinion, I am asking all of you what is first lathe tool you would buy when starting-out now that you have the experience and hind-sight? I am mostly concerned with a tool which will leave the best finish on a cork grip although, with cork being so soft, I realize I am asking for quite a bit. I was surprised at the cost of turning tools (at least through Rockler), even the cheaper varieties. But I learned years ago to never skimp when it comes to tools. The newer variety “insert bit” tools are more expensive than the traditional solid-blade tools (of varying steel types and consequently cost), but if cost effective, I would like to know. While I certainly do not need a tool manufactured with CPMS30V steel, nor can afford it, please afford me with your practical knowledge of what the best, initial turning tool would be. Thanks, guys and gals!

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Norman Miller (---)
Date: January 03, 2020 10:40PM

Coarse, medium and fine sand paper are all you need for cork and foam. A file also comes in handy.
Norm

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Phil Erickson (---.dsl.pltn13.sbcglobal.net)
Date: January 03, 2020 11:07PM

Mark, Norman is correct! If all you plan on turning is cork, you do not need cutting tools. I start with a Surform plane to achieve a round form from block cork, and then proceed with ever finer grit sand papers. Typically, 80, 100, 150, 320 & 400.

400 grit will give you a very smooth finish on cork.

If you intend to turn any wood, you will need cutting tools as Tom recommended.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/04/2020 12:04PM by Phil Erickson.

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Ed Kramer (---.hrbgpa.fios.verizon.net)
Date: January 03, 2020 11:16PM

I found that using flat tipped chisels are also very useful. I have two 1/2" Stanley chisels that I use often. They are cheap and they are easy to sharpen with a wet stone. Sharp tools are essential.

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: January 03, 2020 11:40PM

Norman and Phil,
Thanks for the reply; I can always rely on both of you to help me out. My concern is cork which is glued together but not concentric. How can hand-held sandpaper looped over and pinched between non-stationary fingers compensate to produce a concentric grip? Will the 3000 RPM of my new lathe automatically spit-out a concentric grip? I am not really certain I want to run it that fast anyway. I am used to using a metal lathe with its inherent precise adjustments. The last time I used a wood lathe was in 1967 in Jr. High School (I guess it is called Middle School now) Woods Class. I assumed the surface of the grip needed to be turned to concentric before sanding to the desired finish. If not, you guys have saved me money otherwise spent on turning tools. I am here to learn.

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Norman Miller (---)
Date: January 03, 2020 11:47PM

I think you will be quite surprised how concentric your grips will be.
Norm

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: January 04, 2020 01:14AM

Planning on what I perceived would be required, I purchased a 10in tool rest from Rockler and machined an adjustable support fixture to adapt it to my existing extruded wrapper base. Apparently, I may not need it if the grips can be sanded concentrically down to size rather than starting with typical lathe tools. Even though I admittedly have my doubts concerning concentricity, I will give the sandpaper approach a shot and see what happens before spending the money on rigid lathe tools. None the less, I am still hoping to receive feedback as to what is THE most important lathe tool to have. PLEASE don’t be shy; chime in!!!

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: John Durbin (---.lightspeed.cnwioh.sbcglobal.net)
Date: January 04, 2020 06:45AM

Mark, they are all correct. I am a woodworker and I just started building rods, mostly fly rods. The sandpaper is the way to go. I was thinking the same as you the first time I made a cork grip. I have a number of lathe tools and I figured that would be way better to use but in the end all it does is tear the cork. I had the tools freshly sharpened and everything but it was not pretty. I even turned up my lathe very fast and that did not help at all. In the end I just went from 80 grit down to 400 grit and it looked great, well at least the smoothness of it did, still not perfect shape for my hand but it works.

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Roger Templon (---.paw.cpe.atlanticbb.net)
Date: January 04, 2020 08:56AM

Mark
A Stanley sureform plane (as Phil stated above) will even out the non concentric cork rings and give you a good rough starting point to begin any sanding needed.
Rog

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: January 04, 2020 09:45AM

If you do not use a cutting tool on cork, you will be apt to find that the finished grip is not concentric with the bore. It is always important to use something like a round-nose cutting tool to make the grip concentric with the bore, then follow briefly with a Stanley surform plane and then begin the sanding process.

............

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: roger wilson (---)
Date: January 04, 2020 11:05AM

In addition to the previous comments, one can use the tool rest to rest a sanding stick. For many materials, it is very difficult to use a cutting tool - no matter how sharp with out tearing out the grip material.

But, if one uses 60 grit sand paper on a sanding stick or backing board and rest one end of the backing board and paper on the tool rest, you can achieve the same concentricity to the grip without tearing the grip material.

You can also use a bastard file, or even a coarse nicholson file for the initial shaping of the grip to make it round.

[www.empireabrasives.com]

[www.amazon.com]

[www.homedepot.com]

==================
Any time that you use a file, you want to have a brush on hand to clean the file as needed when it loads up with filed material. A loaded file will not cut cleanly any more.

[www.empireabrasives.com]

--------------------------------------------------------
On the same vein, I no longer use sandpaper reamers. Rather, I use round files chucked into a variable speed hand held drill used in reverse to ream out grip material.

[www.rodbuilding.org]

To prep the file, I use a metal cutting abrasive cutting wheel to chop the handle off of the file. Also, I will blunt chop the tip of the file. Then, I chuck the file into a lathe and while turning the file, use a grinder to prep the chuck area of the file at the large end of the file to make it uniform in size and concentric in shape. Then, I will use the grinder to point the end of the file to allow the file to be used to insert into a grip or cork ring that needs to be enlarged and to get the file started into the work.

Then, of course between uses, use the file bruch to insure that the file is clean and ready for the next use.

Best wishes

p.s.
If you use wood as a grip, as a lot of folks do, then the use of cutting tools work very very well. (Cork or EVA, not so much)

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Phil Erickson (---.dsl.pltn13.sbcglobal.net)
Date: January 04, 2020 12:12PM

Mark, you are correct to be concerned about concentric y. To achieve it, I use the Surform held against the tool rest until the cork is round, I then go to the sandpaper.

When using the paper, I do not loop it over and pinch, instead, I hold it over the piece like one holds a shoeshine rag. A hand on each end over the piece turning.

I use 2" wide strips of Kingspor paper, the very best around!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Lynn Behler (---.97.252.156.res-cmts.leh.ptd.net)
Date: January 04, 2020 02:55PM

Eye protection.

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Lance Schreckenbach (---.lightspeed.hstntx.sbcglobal.net)
Date: January 04, 2020 03:18PM

A coarse file will work pretty good maybe a parting tool along with the different grits of sandpaper. You really don't need a bunch of tools, you just need a good consistent method that will get you where the finished grip needs to be. Cork and foam is pretty easy to shape. I used to shape surfboards and grips are the same way; you can always take off but you can't add. The hardest thing I have come across is finding good quality cork rings.

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: January 04, 2020 03:21PM

Norman, Phil, Ed, John, Roger T., Tom and Roger W.,
Thank you all very much for taking the time and effort to help me out with my wood (cork) lathe turning concerns. A special thanks to Tom for affording a site where such information is easily accessible from qualified, concerned and generous rod builders.
As mentioned earlier, the last time I did any wood turning was in Jr. High School Woods Class some 50 years ago. As a side-note, it was that class which introduced me to the wonderful world of machines to fabricate almost anything. I immediately developed a passion for fabricating and have continually had at least one project of some sort on-the-table ever since. It is a sickness I hope to never find a cure. I only wish to have started building rods back then.
My initial concern, and hence this post, was to learn the best method to produce a concentric cork grip with minimal damage to the surface. With cork being so soft, it was obvious (even) to me that typical lathe tools would tend to rip/tear material from the piece rather than producing a relatively smooth surface. I, too, thought of resting a sandpaper-covered block on the tool rest as suggested by Roger W. What I had not considered was employing a Stanely Surform similarly against the tool rest = great idea and thanks Phil, Roger T. and Tom. I may also try a file as suggested by Norman and Roger W., possibly a curved milled-tooth rather than a bastard file.
Hopefully, starting with a sanding block, file or Surform plane will produce a concentric grip without ripping/gouging/tearing the surface as I would think typical lathe tools would tend to do. So, I am off to acquire a Surform plane to enable me to test the three methods back-to-back prior to (hopefully avoiding the need of) purchasing formal lathe tools as suggested by Ed and Tom.
Thanks again guys; I really appreciate it immensely!!! I want to be just like you when I grow up.

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: roger wilson (---)
Date: January 04, 2020 10:30PM

Another thing that I have picked up is a simple set of ordinary wood chisels. I have ground some different shapes on some of them for various chores and they have worked out well

For the soft materials like cork, there is really not a big need for a conventional lathe tool with a long bit and a long handle.

[www.stanleytools.com]

[www.homedepot.com]

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: January 05, 2020 12:15AM

Thanks for the additional input, Roger.

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Fred Kneipp (---.cnrocmta01.res.dyn.suddenlink.net)
Date: January 06, 2020 06:09PM

I have found that an Easy Wood Mini Easy Rougher with a Ci2-R2 carbide cutter at around 1000 to 1300 RPM with a (light touch!!) works well to get concentric and a Ci2-SQ cutter to form tenions to fit in the reel seats. The key is light touch!!

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: rick sodke (---.ok.shawcable.net)
Date: January 06, 2020 08:11PM

Micro-Mesh Sanding Pads
I really like the feel of cork when it is finished with 3200 grit. You would think it would be slippery but it isn't.

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Re: What is the Most Important (First to Buy) Lathe Tool?
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: January 06, 2020 10:57PM

Thanks, Fred and Rick.

Mark Talmo
FISHING IS NOT AN ESCAPE FROM LIFE BUT RATHER A DEEPER IMMERSION INTO IT!!!

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