Hollow turning rig - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 17 Old 04-18-2008, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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Hollow turning rig

This is my version of Capt. Eddie’s steel snake. It’s an articulated hollowing rig. Commercially available from $250 to $400( the Elbo tool and the monster articulated hollower). My final cost is $38.73. Fun factor 10! This thing works just a smooth as I had hoped. Due to cost and never having done one of these I opted to start out using bronze oil impregnate flanged bearings. I would have preferred ball bearings or thrust bearings but the cost was more than I had planned on hence the bronze bearings. I may have to replace them as they might wear out more quickly that a ball bearing arrangement and will do so if wear becomes a factor. For now though I’m turning!!. A bag of 10 bronze bearings from ENCO was the second highest cost with the rig. The bag of 10 was $12.60. A 3-foot long piece of 1” solid square stock had the highest cost to me at $20.00. The remainder of the dollars spent was for a few nuts and bolts that were not residing in my hardware bin. I used a #2 Morse taper that came with my Beall Buffing system to mount the rig to the tailstock. A draw bolt pulls the Morse taper in quite tight and I have had no rotation of the rig from its mount. Thank you Capt. Eddie!!! I never would have tried this if you hadn’t made the post showing us how you did it.
The bit holders are all home made too. I stumbled onto a “how to” at the around the woods site about making an Oland tool. Basically that’s all these bit holders are. Just an Oland with no wood handle. Thanks to Darrell for the tutorial on Oland tools. Now to take it apart, clean and file down all the ends and edges, trim some bolts to eliminate a few too many washers buff it and re-assemble.
And just one more thank you. Thanks to Fred Morton, a turner from down under who posted pic’s of his homemade rig and offered some great advice and needed measurements.. Oops, almost forgot to thank Steve Schlumpf and Bernie Weishapl for their willingness to share and answer my many questions. Thanks to all who helped me out!…Bill…
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post #2 of 17 Old 03-23-2009, 12:21 PM
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hollow turning rig

Looks great. What are the lengths of the steel bars that you used?
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post #3 of 17 Old 03-23-2009, 03:34 PM
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Just a thought Turnertoo:
If you have any automatic transmission rebuilders, or aircraft or helicopter component overhaul shops in your area they may be happy to give you some old ball bearings to use in your tool. Most of the bearings that get replaced would still be very serviceable for what your requirements are.

Gerry
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post #4 of 17 Old 03-23-2009, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
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From the front where the bit holder fits in 4",11",9"and 3 1/2 at the tailstock end. Found some cheap thrust bearings on line on they really work well...Bill..
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post #5 of 17 Old 03-23-2009, 08:05 PM
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Turner,
Looks good. Where were you thinking of using the ball bearings at, the elbow joints? I think I would prefer the bronze bushing here. There is nothing spinning her, just some pivoting. I don't think you will have to worry about wearing them out. In fact, I have seen a couple of homemade ones that just used the bolt for a pivot. Looks like a fun project.
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post #6 of 17 Old 03-23-2009, 10:14 PM
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Turntoo,
That looks very strong! I am interested in building one if you have any of the documentation available still. I would greatly appreciate it if you are willing to share. Let me know and i will send you a private message with contact info and email address to send it to. Or if you have the old thread name and it is still active, post some links in here. That would be great.

PTS
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post #7 of 17 Old 03-24-2009, 09:25 AM
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The Cobra (which I guess is not on the market or very limited) was made using bearings at all the joints. Instead of keeping everything sort of in line line your tool and the Elbow tool, all the joints are stacked in the same direction. By that I mean each arm is on top of the next one. The bottom arm is mounted to a bracket on the bed of the lathe. This configuration allows the arms to actually move over one another so you get twice the travel that you get with the elbow tool. Does that make sense? I know it's hard to understand. In other words if you pull your tool straight back it runs into itself. The Cobra top bar simply rotates over the top of the other two. You have much more freedom of movement. The downside is to make it solid you've got to do some pretty good machining
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post #8 of 17 Old 03-24-2009, 06:15 PM
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I'm tryin' to figger out how that bugger works?.......Looks like a good way to pick up a few stitches........to match the ones I already collected..........
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post #9 of 17 Old 03-24-2009, 11:00 PM
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Double H,
It actually works well for hollowing. It gives you a firm support the lets you move the cutterhead inside the form without the fear of turning a freehand tool the wrong way or having it at the wrong angle and getting a catch. It is actually a very solid setup which helps to eliminate chatter. If you are into hollowing vessels, its a nice way to go.
Mike Hawkins
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post #10 of 17 Old 03-26-2009, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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I know this is a bit of an old post. I have been using the snake for a bit under a year now and have turned over 30 HF's with it. MUCH more stable than any hand tool. For those of you wanting to make your own the plans are avaliable free at the Bayou woodturners site (Capt. Eddie) and Wayne Bower ( member here) also has an excellent set of plans that he will give you free for the asking. Over the year in use I did add ballbearing thrust bearings between the joints for a much more smooth movement. Also added was the laser system from Stan at ELBO tools because it just clamps right onto the snake. I also ended up making a 4 wheel steady rest for deep turnings and a set of 3/4" diameter bit holder 15" long for hollowing deep vases. I like the tailstock moun for its ease of attachment but a post mount would give you a lot more depth. I can reach the bottom of a 13" tall vase but beyond that I am out of room on my jet 1442 long bed. The post mount like Randy's MONSTER articulated hollower would give several inches more depth in range.There are free videos avaliable on you tube for the Monster system, ELBO tool and the KOBRA system. A search there by the brand name will get you to the vids. After a year of use my homemade system is still evolving and I have done a host of additions. For the price(under $60)this ws the right way to go for me. For those who want to do some HF's but are unable to make your own there are excellent systems avaliable from those vendors mentioned above. I would be happy toprovide linksthat were used in my construction or measurement, advice or simply to answer question. JustPMme...I will get back to you...Bill...
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post #11 of 17 Old 03-27-2009, 05:13 PM
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A couple of guys in our woodturning club are going to build one of these. Looks like you used bronze flange bushings and nylon washers between the steel bars. I have seen Capt. Eddie's rig but like the idea of putting a rig on my tailstock. How would I contact Wayne Bower for plans? Thanks for all the help.
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post #12 of 17 Old 03-27-2009, 05:40 PM Thread Starter
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I think you can look him up on the members list and just send him a PM...Bill..
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post #13 of 17 Old 11-22-2010, 10:59 PM
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turnertoo...I know this thread is ancient, but would appreciate any parts info you, or anyone else may have still. Like the thrust bearings etc. I tried to find Mr Bower but he is no longer in the members list. Thanks in advance...steve
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post #14 of 17 Old 11-23-2010, 05:35 AM
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Not sure if this is allowed. If not please delete. You can find Wayne bowers over on the familywoodworking forum. His son Jeff is a mod like my self over there. He don't post but like ounce a week or so, but he is a active member.Also Bernie and Steve are also active over there so you can contact them also.

Last edited by Steve Bellinger; 11-23-2010 at 05:37 AM.
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post #15 of 17 Old 11-23-2010, 11:43 AM
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If you don't want to build one like the elbow tool go to Lyle Jameison's site. He has plans to build one like his. I've built 3 now and they work fine. I may take the time to build something like the Kobra this next year. Mostly because I want to learn the machining and improve my skills with the lathe and mill.
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post #16 of 17 Old 11-23-2010, 07:00 PM
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I'm glad this thread got dug up. I have been doing some research on hollowing systems. I like the idea of building one myself. Anybody else got any hints or tips?

John
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post #17 of 17 Old 11-23-2010, 08:51 PM
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@ Steve... Thanks for the info. I found that forum the other day and joined!

@ John... Thank you also. I am still digesting your initial post on the Kobra being mounted on the bed of the lathe and its advantages over being in the tailstock.

@ jdixon... Lyle Jamison's site has full plans with dimensions on it.

I have been pondering between this and Lyle's for quite some time while I am refacing our kitchen cabinets and countertops. I have used Lyle's and liked it, but am very curious about this one too. Guess I will just have to make both!

Thanks for the info and to anyone else who may add to it! Steve
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