Turning Archive

Re: grinds
Response To:
grinds ()

Mike Stafford
When I was teaching myself to turn I didn't know any other turners and did not utilize the internet for learning turning purposes. So as I learned to turn I also had to learn to sharpen my tools. As I ground away good steel trying to achieve a uniform grind based on pictures I had seen in various wood turning books I eventually learned to use the grind that I ended up with. My problem, in addition to not knowing how to sharpen was that I didn't know how to use the tools.

Practice and trial and error eventually corrected both. I can now bludgeon a piece of wood into submission and almost never, seldom if ever have to use 40 grit paper.

I was able to spend a weekend with Nick Cook and he looked at my tools and said they were ground just fine and explained the advantages and disadvantages of longer bevels vs. shorter bevels. He showed me how to grind some variations of what I had. Now I keep several gouges ground with different profiles for use specific jobs.

Ultimately lots of practice is the secret to turning. Some people can use a 5/8" Ellsworth bowl gouge with his signature grind for everything they do. I have seen one friend of mine use such a gouge to turn 18" long stem goblets and then use the same tool to turn a sphere.

A tool is what you make of it.

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