My Woodturning Blog
Woodturning can be a expensive hobby so any tools you can make is always a bonus, I always try to make tools or adapt machinery if I can. I dont totally run my workshop on homemade equipement I do have a Electra Becksum bandsaw, Radial saw, Planer thicknesser, belt sander, dust extraction etc but sometimes the satisfaction of making your own tools can be as good as turning out a good bowl. Maybe one day i will have a Robust lathe !!!
Record CL1 motor conversion,
Turning metal on record dml Lathe,
Making wood rings,
Homemade captive ring tools,
Homemade goblet steady,
Homemade carbide tools,
Cam Lock Banjo on Record CL1
Recod CL1 motor conversion
Coming from Yorkshire I don’t open my wallet a lot but I needed a swivel head lathe so I bought a second hand Record CL1 lathe cheap with nova chuck tools etc but I love variable speed so set about adding a vfd drive. Got a vfd controller and 3 phase 240 v motor off Ebay. Bit of a pain to fit but it works.The motor shaft was not long enough so i had to machine a extension shaft. (Did this with vice attachment on my Record DMl 305 lathe, also with VFD drive). The motor mounting plate has to be re drilled for the motor mounting holes a simple job. The top cover of the head stock housing has to be cut to clear the extended motor shaft reasonable easy with a grinder. The motor mounting plate was also ground flat where it faces the head stock to give a tighter fit when its clamped. Added a wood wheel with two magnets in to the end of the head stock shaft to give a actual shaft RPM using a homemade arduino rpm counter. New bearings on the head stock and belt and it works.
Machining Metal on Record DML 305 Lathe
Why metal cut on a wood lathe? Well i needed to shave off 1mm from stainless steel ring inserts that I use to make wood rings, that way the rings are not too bulky. I bought a Axminster cross clamp vice and mounted it on a sled that clamps on top the DML bed. I then bought metal cutting cutters with holders from Bangood and Ali express these will clamp in the vice. Once you have it set up it will cut 1/10 mm off at each pass. So i can cut my stainless steel rings to a very accurate dimension. I then glue my wood outer to the rings and turn normally on the lathe. To hold the rings steady on the lathe chuck I use a jewellers ring extender. They use them to slightly enlarge rings.
Making my stainless steel rings
Above picture on the left shows steel insert after its thickness has been reduced on my metal cutting attachment. Its then glued into the wood block. On the right picture shows ring mounted on jewellers expanding mandrel mounted inthe chuck ready to be turned down.
Above picture on the left shows rings on a mandrel being coated with ca glue adding 6 plus coats and on the right photo is finished product
Homemade Captive Ring Tools
I bough Robert Sorby A805HS Captive Ring tool I wasn’t too impressed its time consuming swapping the cutter between left and right and its not too good at cutting the back of the rings. So I made my own. The cutters are steel from a circular saw blade. Cut out small bits with angle grinder drill a hole the diameter of the rings and a hole for the holding bolt then cut and file to shape. Next harden the steel useing a blowlamp to heat up to temp (use the magnet trick a magnet wont atract to it at the right temperature) dip it into oil and its hardened. Next it should be tempered in a oven to reduce britleness but I dont bother as cutting rings puts very little pressure on the cutter. Finally tap a thread in a piece of steel bar and attch cutter then sharpen. I make the point of the rear cutter as fine as I can so it cuts cleanly round the back of the rings. The radius of the back cutter is slightly larger than the ring diameter so that it does not catch the front of the ring. So for a few euros I have a center left and right cutter and a few spare cutter tips from the saw blade.
Homemade Goblet Steady
Homemade goblet steady, use a old fixed fixed drive center and araldite a bearing onto the end, now turn a dome and a insert for the bearing assemble and you have a good goblet steady.
More homemade tools
Cheap carbide cutting tools. You can buy carbide woodturning cutters from China very cheaply on Ebay or Ali express. They usually come with a screw for around 2 euro each. A piece of 10mm square steel cut a thread in the end add the cutter and a wood handle and you have a first class carbide cutter for about 10 euro.
Camlock banjo on Record CL1
The CL1 toolrest banjo is a real pain but its easy to upgrade to a CL3/4 camlock banjo, its a straight fit it just needs the original bottom bracket underneath the rails instead of the new one. (The gap between the rails is slightly different) The banjo does take a 1 inch tool rest but the new one comes with a tool rest.
They are available at Yandles in UK