Turning Archive

Uncatchable Bowl Gouge

Doc Green
I grind my bowl gouges so that, starting at the tip and moving out onto the wing, the bevel sort of wraps up and over the flute. This gives a grind that is very nearly uncatchable.

I've demonstrated the uncatchability of it to other turners - I jam a disk against a backing plate (friction drive, just in case) and then place the gouge against the disk with the flute closed (3 o'click). Next, I slowly rotate the tool (to initiate the cut) counterclockwise a full 180* until, finally, the flute is facing the disk (9 o'click). No catch.

The shape of the bevel supports the cut up to the point where the cutting edge, which will now be out on the wing, gets to be "in trail." After that point, there is no tendency for it to catch.

I use this to advantage when working with young turners (some only 9 years old) in the summer youth program conducted by our club. The bowl gouge I give them has a steep angle at the nose (55* or so) and the wrap-around bevel. I show them how to use the gouge and then stand back and watch. So far, zero catches!

PS: I just saw the photo JKJ posted. My grind is very similar.

© 1998 - 2017 by Ellis Walentine. All rights reserved.
No parts of this web site may be reproduced in any form or by
any means without the written permission of the publisher.