(to ensure correct alignment) glue them
together and use screws or brads to
reinforce the joint. Glue a small piece
of scrap to the back of the block with
the V as a stop, and you’re in business (Fig. 4). The square stock
rides on a 45º angle through the blade. Just keep
flipping the block until all four corners
are cut (Fig. 5).
Secure the base
in the lathe
With the stick cut into an octagon,
glue it to the base using a piece of
dowel. While this is drying is a good
time to fabricate a special faceplate to
hold the base in the lathe. The tailstock
holds the end of the stick. My custom
faceplate started with an aluminum
3" plate (Fig. 6).
I screwed a piece of 1"-thick hard maple that had been cut
to a 3¼" circle to it and turned it down
to just over 3" in diameter next to the
metal plate and just under 3" on the
Drill a 3/16" hole
in the center while the faceplate is still mounted on the
headstock. Cut a piece of 3/16"-diameter
steel rod to about 1½". Chuck it in the
drill press and file or grind the tip to a
very sharp point while the rod is spinning. Epoxy this rod in the hole
faceplate so that only 1/8" to 5/32" of the
point is proud of the surface.
The metal plate
I used has two sets of mounting holes. I used the outer
holes to screw the plate to the wood
face. I drilled holes through the wood
face through the inner set of mounting holes. Then I ran 1¼" long
head screws through these hole so that
the points of the screws protruded
3/32" or less beyond the surface of the
wood face (Fig. 7). If your screws are
too long, use washers to adjust them
so that very little of the point shows.
The center rod, which should protrude
farther than the screws, and these four
screws act much like a spur center.
It takes a little pounding with a
mallet to mount the blank to the faceplate. But you don’t want
directly on the metal plate; you’ll want
to use a piece of scrap to protect it.