In Tricks of the Trade

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Wooden ways align with steel ways.

When I turn hollow vessels, I have to remove my lathe’s tailstock to install a support for the hollowing tool. When I’m done hollowing, I have to re-mount the tailstock to finish the turning. It’s a pain—literally. My tailstock is quite heavy; removing it is hard on my back, and getting it re-aligned on the ways is worse yet.

To solve the problem, I made a “parking spot” for the tailstock and bolted it to the end of my lathe. This addition is just for storage—it’s not a bed extender. It’s aligned with the lathe’s ways, so I can slide the tailstock into the parking spot instead of lifting it.

I made most of the parking spot from dimensional lumber and common hardware, and used hard maple for the ways. –Lloyd Ackerman

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