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Old 11-06-2018, 09:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: NL
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Default info on turning tools

does anyone use carbide tipped turning tools? And what style do you prefer as in shape like square,round,triangle etc. and size.
thanks for any info
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:20 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I use Easy Wood Tools Ci2. The circle to get the corners off. Then the radius to get most of the material off. From there I go back to the circle to get the shaping done.
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Old 11-06-2018, 09:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Location: Alvin, TX 77511
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I have the small EWT carbide tools. I almost exclusively use the r2 for pens. For bottle stoppers, I mostly the round tool, but not exclusively. I also have a couple of large tools with 15mm r2 blades for hollowing out bowls & such.

But I also use spindle gouges, bowl gouges, skews & other tools for lots of things. Carbide tools are great, but they are only part of the arsenal. You can get by with them if you only make pens, but they aren’t the answer to everything.
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Old 11-06-2018, 10:15 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I prefer an R2 cutter on my Magical Skew--no need for other shapes in most cases for pens. I find it less aggressive than the round cutter and nowhere near as apt to catch as the square. I do use a round cutter on a home-made tool for doing coves in my seam rippers. Carbide tools are pretty easy and inexpensive to make so you can have a tool for each cutter type if you wanted.
Fairfield, Maine
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Old 11-06-2018, 11:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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As a novice to pen turning and more so on using carbide, I do most with an R2. I have also used the round cutter for my Magic Skew and canít say I have a significant preference of one over the other yet. Still use HSS skews, gouges, scrapers and parting tools, also. I could probably learn to stick with a single tool for most pens, start to finish and have done a few that way. But, I am still learning both what I want as far as contour as well as how I want to get there. Maybe next year I will narrow the approach a bit.

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Old 11-06-2018, 12:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I use HSS. Pondered using carbide tools but can't justify the $$$ to duplicate the tools I already have. Good question, though, and good answers.
Edit: I could buy more turning tools but the wife won't go back to work after retiring two years ago.
To err is human; To really mess it up, you need a computer.

Last edited by Woodchipper; 11-06-2018 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 11-06-2018, 04:36 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I am a fan of having some Carbide tools in you arsenal--I almost exclusively use a Woodpecker round carbide tool for turning pens--high speed and a round carbide tool are the ticket for me on synthetic/resin pen blanks--I always stick to my mentors advice and cut many times lightly--the key on these synthetic blanks IMO. The carbide detail tool is easy to create little lines and coves with on most any material and is easy since you just keep it square on your tool rest and on the center line of the material. I haven't tried the new negative rake cutters from Easy Wood Tools but I can't figure how it is much different from using a standard carbide tool and tilting the tool down so it is cutting after the piece has past the center line--maybe a brighter turner will let us know how it IS different......
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Old 11-06-2018, 05:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I totally switched over to carbide, start to finish. I started with HSS tools - sharpening at first with a whetstone, which worked fine for over 500 pens. Bought a slow speed grinder and used that for a couple of years.

Carbide changed the way I work. I use a square radius cutter primarily, and can turn all day without having to work on my tools. It is so nice to turn 40 or more barrels, stopping only to put the next blank on the lathe.

There are advantages to using other tools, but when I'm at the lathe I want to produce pens. My other tools stay in the back of a drawer.

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Old 11-06-2018, 05:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Chris, thanks for the testimonial. I see where you and Fish are coming from. I guess one can never have too many turning tools. Wonder what the wife would like for Christmas?
To err is human; To really mess it up, you need a computer.
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Old 11-06-2018, 05:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Magical Skew for me, start to finish. But then I do own the company.
Inventor of the "Magical Skew"
Proprietor at T. Shadow & Co. llc
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