Turning Archive 2006

Tool making question

Ed Kelle
>I'm trying to make some small hollowing tools according to all the info I've gotten here. Using 1/4" oil hardened drill rod for this first set, if it works well I might use the 3/16" and 1/8" versions as well. Right now I am just working my way thru the straight one.

Last night, tried using the only torch I had, a propane one. I got it to turn red for a little bit but obviously it wasn't enough. So today I went to the Orange Box and bought a Mapp torch, of course they didn't sell the head separately, so I had to get the pricey set with the auto start head. Anyhow, this got the tip to turn red much quicker and I kept it red for about 2 mins or so. Quenched it in peanut oil and cleaned it off. Then used the propane on it again. I turned off most of the lights to see when it would turn yellow but obviously it blew past that quickly and went blue. Does this mean that I really did not fully harden it?
It is much easier to see the metal turn yellow with the lights on, and by yellow I am assuming it means that first quick yellowing not the yellow before it turns red hot again.

Somewhere I read that after it gets red it should be non metallic, and that's not the case either. Not sure if that matters.

Any insight into if I have done all correctly will be appreciated greatly. I'd like to get this right before I go thru the hassle of trying to bend the swan neck version. Got a metal bender jig that allows you to do all sorts of coils and such, but even with the "instructions" it still is quite a mystery. I am using 7" long pieces which will have about 3" inserted into the tang. Will use a copper pipe coupling for a tang into hard maple handle of about 15".

I've already spend more on the supplies than I could have bought a set of mini hollowers for, but hopefully learning this will be better in the long run. Also bought 1/8" HSS bars, but don't even want to think about trying to drill holes and insert tips yet. I admit to being metally challenged.

Any advice is appreciated, a few good laughs would be nice as well. Thanks

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