Removing the nubs - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 10-18-2016, 08:06 PM Thread Starter
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Removing the nubs

I have been making some holiday decorations out of log sections. I mean snowmen figures 7 to 8 inches in diameter and 18 inches tall. I don't think it is safe to part off a spinning chunk of wood that weighs 10 pounds. I cut the pieces of logs as square as I can, but they are still "off " by a 1/4 inch from one side to the other. I turn the tops and bottoms square, back to a little over an inch in diameter where the piece is held by the centers. That leaves a central nub top and bottom to be removed. I cut them off with a saw and sand the residual away. Right now it seems like it is taking me longer to remove the nubs, than to make the figures. I make them for my club's Christmas decoration sale and we already have orders for 11 of them. I know there is something simple that I am not seeing or doing.

Last edited by holtzdreher; 10-18-2016 at 08:11 PM.
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post #2 of 4 Old 10-18-2016, 11:50 PM
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I would think you could part down to a lot less than 1", maybe more like 1/4" or even 1/8" if you have a light touch, before the turning becomes unstable between the centers.
I'd do the tailstock end first, then the headstock end, and keep the tailstock pressure as light as possible consistent with stability.
Even if you do overcook things a bit and the workpiece comes unmoored from between centers, in a spindle turning orientation like that the outcome is more irritating than dangerous. The work might zip around on the floor for a bit and worry the shop cat a little, but that's about it.

A 1/4" nub is going to sand off a whole lot quicker than 1" one, especially if you quickly pare most of it away with a razor sharp chisel first.

There are other ways to hold work like that in a production situation, but I don't know what equipment you have on hand (like chucks for example), so I hesitate to get too deep in the weeds with other suggestions at this point.
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post #3 of 4 Old 10-20-2016, 10:38 PM
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Are you cutting the nubs off with a small handsaw? I use one of those Japanese saws. You can cut pretty close to the base and then hit it with a random orbital sander. Can't see that taking very long at all.
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post #4 of 4 Old 10-21-2016, 08:10 AM
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Why do you have nubs at both ends? The "bottom" end, I assume, is going to be mounted to stand up, so the shape should just end there. Tool marks on that end won't show, anyway. Am I mis-understanding something, here?
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