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Turning Socket Chisel Handles for Lie-Nielsen and Stanley Sweetheart Chisels


Editor’s observe: I’m resurfacing this text from American Woodworker as a result of I’m within the strategy of turning new handles for my Lie-Nielson and Stanley Sweetheart chisels. Tim Heil presents an fascinating tackle acquiring the taper for the socket with a folded piece of paper. I’ll share my model on YouTube later this week.  – David Lyell 

Turning Wooden: Socket Chisel Handles

Right here’s a 1-2-three system for getting an ideal match.

By Tim Heil

Excessive-high quality socket chisels—such because the Stanley Sweathearts and Lie- Nielsens—are making an enormous comeback. Why would these corporations select the socket type? Nicely, it’s all about you, the consumer. For those who’re not glad with a deal with’s form, you possibly can change it. If you need a special wood—no drawback. The deal with of a socket chisel isn’t glued or fixed to the software, so that you simply take away it and make your personal. Fact is, woodworkers have been doing this for years. Within the age earlier than plastics, when a wood deal with on a socket chisel cut up or mushroomed, changing it was straightforward. However not all have been fastened. Immediately, there are a great deal of fantastic previous socket chisels going for a track, merely as a result of they’ve busted or lacking handles.

I’m a turner with a factor about handles—I simply love making them. Screwdrivers, awls, ice cream scoops: If it’s received a deal with, I’ve acquired to make my very own.

Once I first turned handles for socket chisels, I might make a number of crude measurements of the socket and simply go at it. If the taper on the deal with’s shank wasn’t fairly proper, I guessed the place it was off and tried once more. Whereas this technique works OK, I’ve since discovered a measuring system that’s far more dependable. Following these steps, your shank ought to match tight immediately.

First, flip a cylinder that’s an inch or two longer than the size of the deal with you’re going to make (in fact, the complete size consists of the shank). Th e slender finish of the shank will almost definitely be a small diameter (anyplace from 1/four″ to three/eight″), so I choose utilizing a cone-formed revolving middle within the lathe’s tailstock. Th is provides me extra room to maneuver the parting device when slicing the shank’s taper.

1. Chisel sockets are available many various sizes, so that you’ll have to take some measurements earlier than turning the deal with. Begin by slicing a bit of pocket book paper about four” sq.. Roll it up round a pencil.

2. Push the paper cylinder all the best way into the chisel’s socket. Let go of the paper—it is going to unroll to type a cone. The cone can be precisely the identical form because the socket.

three. Stick one or two items of tape on the cone to carry its form. Mark the cone on the finish of the socket. Take away the cone from the chisel.

four. Set a divider to the space between the pencil mark and the top of the cone.

5. Mark this distance from the tailstock finish of a clean you’ve roughed out.

6. Set a caliper to suit the cone on the mark you drew on the finish of the chisel’s socket. This would be the main diameter of the deal with’s shank (the half that matches into the socket).

7. Flip the clean to the main diameter, simply to the appropriate of the pencil line. Tough out the remainder of the shank’s taper.

eight. Reset the caliper to suit the top of the cone. This would be the shank’s minor diameter.

9. Flip the top of the shank to the minor diameter, leaning the parting device at about the identical angle because the tough taper. Reduce a straight taper between the main and minor diameters.

10. Verify the match of the shank within the chisel’s socket. First, coat the within of the socket with chalk mud. Then flip off the lathe and draw back the tailstock.

eleven. Push the socket onto the shank and twist it a number of occasions. If its taper is right, the complete size of the shank can be coated with chalk. If it’s not right, solely the excessive spots can be coated.

12. As soon as the taper is right, lengthen the shank about 1/eight″ to the left.

thirteen. Form the remainder of the deal with as you would like. Cease the lathe and take away the deal with every so often to check the way it feels.

14. Half the deal with from the clean utilizing a spindle gouge. (My gouge could be very brief, from turning so many handles!)

Check the match

If all has gone well, the shank ought to completely match the socket. Simply to make certain, carry out a easy check. Rub a bit of chalk on the within of the socket (Photograph 10). Flip off the lathe, draw back the headstock and push the socket onto the shank. Twist the chisel a couple of occasions and take away it (Photograph eleven). If the match is right, a lot of the shank shall be coated with chalk; if it’s not, the chalk will present you the excessive spots that must be eliminated. If the match is just too unfastened, your greatest guess is to cut off a part of the shank and begin over from the start. Don’t fear—the turning
goes fairly fast.

As soon as the match is OK, lengthen the shank by about 1/eight″ (Photograph 12). (Discover the small hole between the top of the socket and the top of the shank on the handles proven on web page 30.) This hole lets you drive the shank tight into the socket. The top of the deal with shouldn’t butt up towards the highest of the socket. If it does, the deal with might cut up if you strike the chisel.

Flip the deal with to any form you would like (Photograph thirteen). Th ere’s actually no proper or improper right here; historically, chisel handles got here in many various shapes and sizes. In case your work
requires you to strike the chisel hard, chances are you’ll need to put a ferrule on one or each ends of the deal with to stop it from splitting. Flip off the lathe every now and then and check how the deal with feels. Whenever you’re achieved, half off (Photograph 14). To put in your deal with, simply drive it into the socket with a mallet. With a decent match, there’s no want for glue. Whenever you apply end to the deal with, don’t put any on the shank. If the shank is just too slippery, it gained’t keep seated within the socket.

This story initially appeared in American Woodworker February/March 2012, problem #158.

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