Turning Archive 2006

Subject:
Consumables

John Lucas
>I was discussing an unrelated topic with another artist this morning and remembered something that has made a big difference in my turning. One day I was turning ahd noticed that one of my gouges was getting quite short. Then I realized how old it was. It made me realize that even if you sharpen a lot it still takes a while to use up a bowl gouge. That's when the realization hit me that turning tools, grinding wheels, and sandpaper were all consumables. That is, you use them up in the process of making things. This created a freedom to sharpen as much as necessary and to use whatever sandpaper was necessary to do the job right. My turnings improved almost immediately. Since my tools are much sharper I use less sandpaper so I think it all balances out in the end. I do go through grind stones faster but they still last several years. At $29 to $39 apiece that still comes out to about $20 or less per year. Well worth it for a sharp tool.

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