Turning Archive

Re: Uncatchable Bowl Gouge

john lucas
Well I'm obviously going to have to do more experimenting when people like Bill, Doc and Keith all agree. Sharp fellows. I reground a gouge this morning using a homemade version of Michelson grind. I checked it against a real one and mine is dead on as far as all the hole placements. Doing a test sort of like Doc Described there wasn't much difference between my gouge and the one with the Michelson grind. Maybe a little. More practice needed. Would love to spend some time in Doc,Bill or Keith's shop playing with these gouges. We could learn a lot sharing what we have learned.
I find that most catches by beginners are because they lift the tool off the bevel doing a push cut so the nose catches. The other catch they have is starting the cut on the lip of the bowl. Neither one of those will be prevented by this grind I don't think. The other catch is touching the wood before they anchor it on the tool rest. No grind will stop that. :) When I'm teaching I try to enforce never having the gouge flute straight up. Always tilted in the direction you want to go. If they do this whatever grind is on the wing will have zero affect on their turning.

I do a lot of pull cuts and will be putting the tool to the test on those. In that case I can see where a different grind on the wing will help. For the last 3 months I have been using these same 2 gouges. One has a very short main bevel and the other has the bevel ground all the way down. Both have the heel of the bevel ground off. The difference is surprisingly minor. I turned a wide variety of things, bowls, platters, spindles etc. I could easily hear the difference in pitch when I switched from one to the other. When taking extremely fine cuts with freshly sharpened tools I think I had a better feel for how it was cutting with the small bevel. On the inside of a bowl there was definitely less friction or what seemed like less effort to push the tool on the short bevel. I didn't turn any bowls with a transition area. I would think ,but don't know for sure, that the small bevel would work better.

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