Hot New Tools: Issue 30Comments (0)
This article is from Issue 30 of Woodcraft Magazine.
Bowl turning made easier
Easy Wood Tools Turning Set
Does it feel like you spend more time sharpening than turning? Easy Wood Tools has designed a complete turning tool set that eliminates sharpening by employing four-sided replaceable carbide cutters. Thanks to the cutter’s unique design, there’s no bevel angle to figure out: the tool can cut from left to right, or right to left, even straight in, simply by keeping the tool flat on the rest and parallel with the floor.
The Ci1 (Carbide insert) has three cutting heads available: an R4 radius, a standard cutter for roughing and inside work on larger bowls; a square head for roughing and dead square inside corners, and an R2 radius used for finishing inside bowls under 8" in diameter. In testing, I was really impressed by the way the Rougher hogged away material effortlessly while transferring cutting pressure directly into the tool rest.
To complete the line, Easy Wood Tools also manufactures the Ci0 Easy Finisher that features a round carbide cutter for doing the inside work on smaller bowls and for larger coves on spindle work. Although called a rougher, the scaled-down Ci2 Mini is also capable of doing finish cuts.
Ci1 Easy Rougher w/Handle
Ci0 Easy Finisher w/Handle
Ci2 Easy Rougher Mini w/Handle
Ci1 Easy Rougher David J. Marks Limited Edition
Tester: Ben Bice
Make puzzling or patriotic pens
Stars & Stripes Flag and Puzzle Inlay Pen Kits
These unique pen kits are sure to be a conversation starter! Exotic species and dyed stabilized domestics are laser-cut to form the individual parts. For the Stars and Stripes Kit, assemble the individual stars and stripes into the precut flag blanks. The Puzzle Kit involves actually “solving” the 3-D puzzle around the tube (the parts are numbered if you feel the need to cheat). After assembling the pen, simply trim, shape on the lathe, sand, and finish.
Each pen is available in a variety of barrel styles. You’ll also need to buy a separate pen kit. I found the project somewhat challenging, but the step-by-step instructions make it doable for most turners.
Stars and Stripes Pen Kits (different pen styles available)
Puzzle Pen Kits (different pen styles available)
Tester: Darin Lawrence
“Plug and Spray”
WoodRiver HVLP Spray Guns
Self-regulated, gravity-fed guns are one of the oldest and time-tested HVLP solutions. The reason they cost so much less than other sprayers is because they work off your compressor. Although designed for small projects and touch-ups, we found the Mini Pro especially handy for our workshop because it can run off smaller pancake-style compressors. (Add an in-line filter to catch moisture or oil before it gets to your gun.) The full-sized gun requires 4.2-7.1 SCFM, well within the capacity of mid-size 20-gallon compressors.
Both guns feature stainless steel needles and nozzles as well as adjustments for air, fluid, and pattern. The mini’s .8mm nozzle is good for shellac; the optional 1.4mm nozzle is better suited for solvent and water-based finishes. The full-sized gun comes with a 1.4mm nozzle, but can be outfitted with a 2mm nozzle for thicker finishes.
WoodRiver Mini Pro HVLP Gun
WoodRiver Pro HVLP Gun
Tester: Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk
Super square priced fair
Pinnacle Combination Square
Considered the linchpin or cornerstone, an accurate square is a must in every workshop. Called upon for making measurements and checking joinery and the accuracy of other tools and machinery, a reliable square is worth its weight in gold. Unfortunately, the near-gold price of the best squares kept them out of the hands of the start-up shop owners who needed them most. Until now.
Working with a U.S. manufacturer, Woodcraft now offers a 12" Pinnacle square that’s reliable and reasonably priced. The laser-etched graduation marks on the stainless steel rule are accurate with +/-.005" from the 0 mark. The head is machined to a tolerance of .005" over the length of the blade. The most expensive combo squares .002" accuracy, but at this price you can buy—and safeguard—a few inexpensive-but-unadjustable Engineer squares (less than .001" deviation) when you require hair-splitting accuracy.
The set includes a 12" blade, square head, and center finder in a blow-molded case.
Pinnacle 12" Combination Square 3pc
Tester: Ben Bice
Need a bigger Band-Aid?
Leave the belt-tourniquets to the Boy Scouts; if you happen to suffer some serious accident in the shop, you want a first-aid solution that’s safe, simple, and easy to remove when you get to the ER.
The QuickClot sponge looks like a thick gauze pad, but it contains a chemical agent that can stop the bleeding of serious injuries, giving you the time you need to get help. Just tear open the pack, press the sponge against the wound, and call 911.
The single-use packs have a two-year shelf life, but think of the periodic investment like a smoke detector. You may never use it, but it’s good to know that it’s available.
All-Ready Quick Clot
Tester: Kent Harpool
Ground to perfection
Wolverine Vari-Grind 2
One of the most popular sharpening systems for turners by Oneway Manufacturing just got better. The original V-G provided a simple pivot point to support the butt end of a turning tool. The next generation V-G 2 offers an adjustable rod that clamps securely onto the blade but still allows the tool to rotate and pivot so that you can grind standard gouges and side (or fingernail) grinds without worry. In addition to maintaining the edges on your favorite tools, the system makes it easy to restore worn-out or mis-ground tools with the modern grinds seen in turning books. As a side benefit, the rod’s “side restraint action” keeps the tool centered on the wheel, eliminating the times when it would skip off the edge.
The Vari-Grind system is sold as a complete system for new users, but if you own the original and are interested in taking the next step, you can save a few bucks and buy the V-G 2 without the base.
Tester: Kent Harpool
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