what is the next step for a bowl gouge - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 12:28 PM Thread Starter
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what is the next step for a bowl gouge

Right now I have a 3/8" bowl gouge and the shavings that it makes are so thin I feel like I would benefit from a larger gouge. I really don't NEED to upgrade, I don't turn bowls much bigger then 8". But if I was to upgrade what would your need tool be? 1/2" bowl gouge, 5/8", or maybe a carbide one?

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post #2 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 01:21 PM
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You are right about a 3/8" being big enough for an 8" bowl. However, if you want a larger bowl gouge go for a Thompson 1/2" V. Very good tool for about any size bowl...Bill..
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post #3 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 07:31 PM
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I turn bowls from 1" to 20" using my 1/2" V thompson gouge. It is an incredibly versatile tool. http://www.thompsonlathetools.com/
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post #4 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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what is the difference between the V and U shaped?

Is the extra 1/8 upgrade (to a 1/2) a significant? Is a 5/8" a "huge" tool?

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post #5 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 09:16 PM
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DV,
If you aren't going any bigger than 8", a 1/2" gouge is an ideal size. I don't think you would benefit to go any larger. I have a 3/8, 1/2, and a 5/8. I use the 1/2" the most. I only use the 5/8 for roughing out big bowls.
You will have a bit more control roughing out and still be able to do details with it. If you go to Doug's site, you can see the difference in the v shape versus the u shape. Each one handles a bit different.

Here's the definitions from Doug's site:
U-SHAPE BOWL GOUGES
The U shape bowl gouge is an excellent all around tool. It has a full radius that will provide a beautiful shearing cut inside a bowl or platter.
V-SHAPE BOWL GOUGES
The V shape Bowl gouge is a balance between flute shape and depth to prevent clogging. A fingernail grind is provided that works well on a roughing or finishing cut... my personal favorite

Mike Hawkins
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post #6 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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Well I read the definitions of V and U shaped on the site. But I don't know what they really mean functionally....

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post #7 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 10:38 PM
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The differences between the U and V gouges are subtle and don't really affect the functionality to a great extent. If in doubt I would just suggest trying a V gouge. It's a good all-purpose tool.

What brand of bowl gouge do you currently own? There are definite size differences between American and European brands. The American standard is to measure across the entire tool shaft. The European makers, however, only measure across the flute. For example, my 1/2" Sorby looks huge compared to my 1/2" Thompson.

I only mention this because I'd hate to see you buy the next size up and get a tool that's no different in size than the one you own.
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post #8 of 19 Old 01-18-2010, 11:39 PM Thread Starter
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I have one of the benjamin best sets from penn state. I'm sexond guessing the size... I'll measure it just to be sure.

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post #9 of 19 Old 01-19-2010, 07:00 AM
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I'm like Mike. I only use the 5/8 to rough out large bowls. It's a big tool even though it's only 1/8" bigger. The difference in the 3/8 to 1/2 is how far you can hang it over the rest before it starts to chatter. If you don't have a curve tool rest this becomes an issue on larger bowls.
One thing we haven't mentioned is gouge measurements. The English measure the flute width to name their gouges and the US gouges use the rod size. So an English 3/8 is the same size as a US 1/2". I don't know where the Benjamin's best falls on that scale but you can measure the rod diameter to find out. Doug Thompson uses the rod diameter.
I think the V clears shaving better but that may just be me. There is also a subtle difference in the shape of the cutting edge on the wings with a V vs U. The V also has a tiny bit more metal left after milling the V so it might be a little stiffer.
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post #10 of 19 Old 01-19-2010, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
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I measured the rod and it came is at 1/2" so i guess this whole thread is pointless...

I just thought that i should be taking lager shavings off.... it peals off more like string then any sort of ribbon that I was hoping for.

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post #11 of 19 Old 01-19-2010, 10:39 PM
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I depends a lot on how the gouge is oriented and where your cutting on the bowl. I can take off 1/2" in one pass if I try. If I start the cut and purposely make it cut deeper the bottom wing will help remove wood.
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post #12 of 19 Old 01-20-2010, 07:35 AM
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Watch the last 10 second of this video, this is done with a 1/2 diameter bowl gouge at slower RPM's. BTW - this is the lathe Dave Ramer built from scratch a couple years ago and you can notice the spindle height is much to high for me.

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post #13 of 19 Old 01-20-2010, 07:50 AM
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What is the next step for a bowl gouge

Ya wanna see some chips fly? grab that 3/4 monster from Doug,I got it an love it for roughing out the big stuff. An I still can't get my dang smileys on here.I MISS MY SMILELY'S

God Bless all
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post #14 of 19 Old 01-20-2010, 12:26 PM Thread Starter
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Ha! Nope i don't get anything like that. Maybe I need to work on my technique.

Does the shape matter? I just sharpen it on my grinder and wolverine jig like I would a roughing gouge. Should I need get the Vari-Grand attachment?

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post #15 of 19 Old 01-20-2010, 04:09 PM
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The swept back wings like the Wolverine jig cuts are what I recommend for bowl turning. There are a couple of cuts I do with that tool that can be either very fine or very aggressive. What I call a pull cut where I have the handle down and cut mostly with the wings will really remove wood. On the interior I do a push cut with the flute about 2:30 or even 3. The nose starts the cut and the wing removes the bulk of wood. That is the cut that will remove 1/2" in one pass. Takes horsepower and tool control to do that but it will do it.
There are other cuts such as shear scraping that you can do with the wings of a bowl gouge that has been ground on the Wolverine.
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post #16 of 19 Old 01-24-2010, 12:13 AM
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I checked out Doug's site last night and am I right that his gouges are sold without handles?That's good if you want to turn your own handle but if you want to get right to turning you need to buy one with a handle on it.I may buy one of his later on when I get the hang of turning down. As for now I love my Robert Sorby.
Donny
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post #17 of 19 Old 01-24-2010, 05:15 PM
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Donny,
Part of the fun of buying a nice tool is making your own handle, usually out of a special piece of wood. If you would like, I have a nice tutorial I put together on making a tool handle. I have sent it to quite a few people on this forum. It's free. Just send me a pm with your email and I will email it back to you. I also have one on making a peppermill.
Mike Hawkins


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Originally Posted by don716 View Post
I checked out Doug's site last night and am I right that his gouges are sold without handles?That's good if you want to turn your own handle but if you want to get right to turning you need to buy one with a handle on it.I may buy one of his later on when I get the hang of turning down. As for now I love my Robert Sorby.
Donny
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post #18 of 19 Old 01-24-2010, 06:09 PM
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Don Doug lists several people on his website who sell handles and they are very nice. It only takes a few minutes to make a handle and it's good experience. If you need help I think I have a word document somewhere that I use as a handout on my demo's. Actually it's probably on tool making but has a section on making a handle.
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post #19 of 19 Old 03-04-2010, 10:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dvoigt View Post
Right now I have a 3/8" bowl gouge and the shavings that it makes are so thin I feel like I would benefit from a larger gouge. I really don't NEED to upgrade, I don't turn bowls much bigger then 8". But if I was to upgrade what would your need tool be? 1/2" bowl gouge, 5/8", or maybe a carbide one?
If you are looking for carbide inserts or handles we do supply both on our web site. We sell several sizes and shapes of carbide inserts and our handles are Ash and available in 3 sizes.

Also our carbide inserts will remove more than thin shavings. We do have a YouTube channel showing our tools in action if you want to see how they work. http://www.youtube.com/woodturningtools


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