Wood threading kit in place of a chuck? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 02-21-2019, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
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Wood threading kit in place of a chuck?

I have a little benchtop lathe, and I have used it in combination with a jacob's chuck to try to turn shaker knobs. It has worked ok, but I find that the jacob's chuck doesn't hold the stem that I turn very well, so it's been a struggle.

I want to buy a proper chuck eventually, but they're spendy, and I have a baby on the way, so it's not a good time. What I do have already are a couple of those plate things that thread onto the lathe that I can screw stuff to, and a 3/4" wood threading kit.

I want to make the shaker knobs with threaded stems anyway because it's neat and the shakers actually did that from what I understand. So I'm thinking I'll just turn a tenon and thread it with the kit, then turn the handle into threaded hole in a block mounted on the plate. Then turn the knob, and twist it out when I'm done.

This should work right? If not, why?
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post #2 of 13 Old 02-21-2019, 06:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremymcon View Post
I have a little benchtop lathe, and I have used it in combination with a jacob's chuck to try to turn shaker knobs. It has worked ok, but I find that the jacob's chuck doesn't hold the stem that I turn very well, so it's been a struggle.

I want to buy a proper chuck eventually, but they're spendy, and I have a baby on the way, so it's not a good time. What I do have already are a couple of those plate things that thread onto the lathe that I can screw stuff to, and a 3/4" wood threading kit.

I want to make the shaker knobs with threaded stems anyway because it's neat and the shakers actually did that from what I understand. So I'm thinking I'll just turn a tenon and thread it with the kit, then turn the handle into threaded hole in a block mounted on the plate. Then turn the knob, and twist it out when I'm done.

This should work right? If not, why?
Should work, but there are considerations.

Direction of rotation is a key factor, spin it the wrong way the the knob blank will unscrew from the faceplate.

Is 3/4" sufficient for the loads you will place on it when turning the knob?

With the proper direction of rotation you will be "tightening" the threaded connection between the knob blank and the fixture, will it get too tight? As in will you be able to get them apart without damaging one or the other?

Your fixture will have to be true to the spindle or your knobs will be offset relative to the threads.

Just the things that came to my mind as I thought about it...
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post #3 of 13 Old 02-21-2019, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
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I am a little worried that I won't be able to remove the knob once I've turned it. I'm sure 3/4" will be sufficient, since I will have done the rough rounding between centers while turning the threaded part, and some parts of the finished knob will be less than 3/4" anyway.

I am a little concerned about the hole being perfectly centered and perfectly square. My bench top lathe can advance a bit held in my Jacob's chuck in the tail stock part way in, which might help keep it all aligned...

Maybe I'll just buy a chuck... I won't need it for probably a couple months anyway - the project I'll need the knobs for hasn't even been started yet. We'll see what kind of cash I have by then I guess!
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post #4 of 13 Old 02-22-2019, 11:00 AM
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Jeremy. I would make a faceplate block with the female thread in it centered. Then thread you handle blank directly into it, and turn the handle. The handle blank can be supported at the same time with a live center until almost finished...then backed away to finish it once the handle is completely balanced.
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post #5 of 13 Old 02-23-2019, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by gmercer_48083 View Post
Jeremy. I would make a faceplate block with the female thread in it centered. Then thread you handle blank directly into it, and turn the handle. The handle blank can be supported at the same time with a live center until almost finished...then backed away to finish it once the handle is completely balanced.
Oh! That's a good idea - keep the live center on until the very end. I didn't think of that. Thanks!
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post #6 of 13 Old 02-23-2019, 06:00 PM
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Jeremy, I made a handle (similar to a file handle) once for a birdcage awl...and after cutting away the wood that was in the live center, I found it too unsafe to sand. What I did was drilled a small center hole thru a 3/4"x3/4" piece of 1/2" thick plywood, then put the plywood between the handle and the live center on the tailstock to steady the piece, and that worked great! No more wobble.
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post #7 of 13 Old 02-24-2019, 06:39 PM
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put an o-ring or flat rubber washer over the thread before screwing it in, should make it easier to release
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post #8 of 13 Old 02-24-2019, 07:43 PM
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Woodcraft has a threading kit for cutting 1-8 threads which is common on a lot of lathes, including mine. With the top of the headstock spinning toward you, it would be tightening as it turns. For instance, my chuck is installed with the top turned away from me. Then, when turning, the tool is acting as a force to keep the piece tight on the headstock. Hope I make sense. Reversing the headstock would cause the piece to loosen. Considering getting the kit for myself.

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post #9 of 13 Old 02-24-2019, 10:50 PM
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Iíve been sorta following this thread and there are good solutions posted. I also read where a scroll style chuck might be to expensive. Not sure what is considered to expensive but I did a couple quick searches for small 3 and 4 jaw chucks and found they are priced from around 40 or 50 bucks and up with some really decent ones at about 100. These would easily handle stock used to make knobs and with the use of a live center on the other end you could chuck up stock capable of producing numerous knobs from a single piece. This would save a tremendous amount of time and likely material also.
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post #10 of 13 Old 02-25-2019, 12:15 AM
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I am guessing your spindle is 3/4- 16 TPI, if so:

Get some nuts like these, they are .8" long, thread the wooden peg into it but leave space between shoulder and nut, then thread the nut on to your lathe spindle. The back of the peg will tighten to the end of the spindle, when you are done loosen nut on spindle and peg will easily unscrew.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/3-4-16-Hexa...-/362045823493

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post #11 of 13 Old 02-26-2019, 10:05 PM Thread Starter
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The o ring is interesting. I do have some on hand that ought to work too.

And yes I could just buy a chuck. There's a decent one from Penn state industries for $100. I'm sure in the long run I wouldn't regret it. But $100 is a fair chunk of change, and I'm afraid I wouldn't be happy with a chuck for any less than $100. Plus I have no intention of turning any bowls or anything big like that - just knobs and maybe tool handles.

I did see a small chuck from harbor freight for $30. Maybe I'll try that...
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post #12 of 13 Old 02-27-2019, 08:59 AM
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Instead of an o-ring. Cut a circle of plastic from the flat of a milk jug or other thin plastic container. 3/4 inside circle cut out about 1.25 inches on outside. Been using one for a few years now.

My concern with threading 3/4 x 16 would be that there is not enough bite in some woods to hold the wood securely. Especially with something like bass or yellow poplar. A 1x8 thread had a lot more bite. When you turn your pegs, do they have a taper base? I happened upon a few cases of furniture spindles and the ends have tapers that are a good friction fit in a MT1 taper headstock. I turn the pieces with out a chuck or spur with just the friction in the head stock taper. Use the knock out road to poke them out. It works very similar to a cup chuck.
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post #13 of 13 Old 02-28-2019, 11:37 AM Thread Starter
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It's not 3/4x16 - it's an actual thread box. Meant for wood, so it's coarser threads - I think it's like 6 or 8 tpi. I tried turning a Morse taper once and doing that way, but didn't have much luck. Maybe I'll give it another shot. The milk jug is a smart idea.
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