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post #1 of 12 Old 01-09-2009, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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Wood Spits

I just got a lathe for christmas and have started to read and look for dvd's to rent to get back into turning. One issue that I keep running across when I spin is that the wood "splits" as I'm turning it. It's not splitting down the middle but rather it might shear off the top 1/8 inch or so. Mainly happens when I grab the end grain. Any suggestions on ways to prevent this from happening?
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post #2 of 12 Old 01-09-2009, 03:28 PM
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ColeO is it splitting when you first starting out with a square stock?
If so, it's a good idea to start your roughing gouge in the center of the piece and work to the ends. Or cut the corners off the stock before you mount to the lathe,

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post #3 of 12 Old 01-09-2009, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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Yes it is when I first start with a square block. Once I start to get the corners down a bit it stops. I thought about cutting the corners off but at this point I really don't have a good tool to do that.
Thanks vcooney
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post #4 of 12 Old 01-09-2009, 07:55 PM
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You can cu the corners on the TS or with a router and a chamfering bit. You could even do it with a circular saw is you don't have the others, Band saw will work to. It make turning a lot easier if you cut the corners off first, even a belt sander would work. If the corners are cut of it makes the first part of the turning alot less violent.

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post #5 of 12 Old 01-10-2009, 02:12 AM
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I use a drawknife sometimes to ease the corners. The only other options I have are a light touch and sharp tools.

Tim
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post #6 of 12 Old 01-10-2009, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Ya, I used a hand saw last night and it seemed to help with the splitting. I figured that it would help but I really don't have the tools to do it right now, well safely and quick.
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post #7 of 12 Old 01-10-2009, 03:17 PM
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Cole,
What kind of wood are you turning that you are having trouble with?
Mike Hawkins
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post #8 of 12 Old 01-10-2009, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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At first it was Cedar but I stopped because my wfie is allergic to it. Now it is purple heart and cherry. I actually got it figured out. I think that I needed to take the corners off to help keep it from splitting
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post #9 of 12 Old 01-11-2009, 08:23 AM
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Did you try working from the center out? Using light cuts at first and sharp tools is a must.

Vince
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post #10 of 12 Old 01-11-2009, 01:54 PM
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Cole,
Check your toolrest height also. You should be cutting just above center axis of your piece. If you are cutting just below, it will have a tendency to take off a chunk of wood. On my bigger pieces, I bandsaw off the corners with a simple jig, but on smaller projects I don't and don't have any problems with the wood splitting. The angle of your tool, the height, all make a difference. Try and get together with a more experienced turner locally just to make sure you are learning the right way and not picking up bad habits. Also, take your turning tools along and have them checked to see if they are properly sharpened.
Mike Hawkins
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post #11 of 12 Old 01-12-2009, 07:35 AM
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Sound like you might be scraping instead of cutting. Use a rough out gouge or spindle gouge. Put the tool on the tool rest and let the bevel of the tool touch the work with the tip no cutting and the handle down. Raise the handle until the tip starts to cut. when roughing spindles I tilt the tool so the flute is about 45 degrees, pointing in the direction I want to go.
Don't start right on the end, it will lift the fibers and tear the wood. Start about 2 inches from the end and work your way back to the end. If you push the tool straight in, it will cut and then naturally go in the direction the flute is pointing. Then you can control the depth of the cut by how much you lift the handle.
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post #12 of 12 Old 01-13-2009, 08:24 AM Thread Starter
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I'll try raising the tool rest and see how that does for me. Thanks for the help!
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