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Tip #56
Lathe Turning

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Lathe turning is perhaps the only woodworking operation in which, after stock is cut to size, you can start and finish a project in just one mode of the Mark V. But it also demands a good deal more skill and patience than other opera-ations. If you're just beginning, don't be dkcouraged. Turning takes a little practice, but once you get the hang of it, it's one of the most satisfying woodworking techniques.

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Figure 12-1. The accessories that are used for spindle turning operations are the: (A) drive center, (B) tool rest, (C) cup center, (0) tailstock, and (E) optional steady rest. The steady rest helps to reduce whip and vibration.

The lathe hasn't changed in principle since it was a primitive, bow-powered tool that is said to have been invented in ancient Egypt. It remains a means of turning stock at controlled speeds so sharp tools may be pressed against it, shaping it symmetrically. Electric motors have replaced the various hand powered or foot powered devices originally used, but the quality of the output still depends on the operator's skill in manipulating the chisels used to form the stock.

There are two basic kinds of lathe turning: spindle turning and faceplate turning.

Spindle turning is turning stock between two centers--the drive center and the cup center (Figure 12-1). Usually the end product is a long cylinder, like a table leg or a candlestand.

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Figure 12-2. The accessories that are used for faceplate turning are the: (A) faceplate, and (B) tool rest.

Faceplate turning is turning with the stock mounted to a faceplate (Figure 12-2). This faceplate is, in turn, mounted to the main spindle. The end product is usually shorter and wider than spindle turning, like a platter or bowl. Shopsmith offers two faceplates, 3-3/4" and 6" in diameter.

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