In Tricks of the Trade

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Turning Tool Tamer
by Richard Tendick

I was turning a vase recently, and as I got deeper into the turning, the vase’s rotation pulled the tool’s tip down, making it very difficult to keep the tool straight.

I made a jig that cost me about $5. It prevents the handle from being pulled up, but allows horizontal movement so I can easily work deep in the turning.

The jig consists of two pieces of wood.  The lower piece fits under the lathe’s bed, and has two rare earth magnets to hold the jig in place.  The upper piece fits between the ways.

An eye bolt runs through both parts, and has a length of light chain attached.  A loop of cord goes around the handle of the tool, with an S-hook attaching it to the chain.

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