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tsg

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Hi, I am totally new to turning having picked up a cheap old lathe a couple of weeks ago. I have loads of questions but I will start with a couple.

The lathe came with a Multistar Duplex chuck, complete with the original instructions. However even after reading the instructions I can't seem to use it properly. The workpiece keeps coming out. I've tried with the small jaws both in compression and expansion mode, and also with the larger jaws in both modes but still have the same problem. It may well be my technique - or lack of it - as I said I am a total newbie. Is there something obvious that I could be missing?

And secondly, is there a decent beginners book or video about turning? I really need to find out more about what speed to use at what stage etc. And basic principles. I am thoroughly enjoying making more sawdust, shavings and firewood at the moment. :lol:

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks

Paul
 

CHJ

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The best book you can get for basic principles is that by the late Keith Rowley, there's a link to details in the Help sticky linked from the top of this section.

Regarding the Multi-Star chuck, I've not used one but although a good chuck I believe they are rather critical on work piece dimensions for correct grip and not the easiest for a beginner to master.

A 4 jaw self centring scroll chuck is much more flexible and forgiving.
 

Wildman

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I trust you are cutting a dovetail in the workpiece and balancing it before turning it round to use the chuck?
If so maybe the overhang is too great, what is it you are trying to turn, photos would help.
Always start at a fairly slow speed untill the workpiece is balanced and if need be support the work with the tailstock.
There are lots of beginners books on ebay and lots of utube videos for free. Maybe someone local to you can give you some pointers, have you thought of joining a local club, you might even be able to take night classes locally.
Be quick
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Woodturning-A ... 27c7fe73c7
 

woodyturner

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The Multistar Duplex type collet chuck only have a small amount of movement so your fixing for recess or spigot has to be exact as already said a good 4 jaw self centring scroll chuck is better or should I say ease to use if you want to carry on with the chuck you have I would suggest you find out the tolerance for each of the jaws you have got and work to them then you should be fine

DJ25 Duplex jaws - 25mm external by 18mm internal dovetail:
DJ35 Duplex jaws - 35mm external by 25mm internal dovetail:
DJ45 Duplex jaws - 45mm external by 38mm internal dovetail:
DJ55 Duplex jaws - 55mm external by 38mm internal dovetail:
DJ75 Duplex jaws - 75mm external by 65mm internal dovetail plus 38mm spigot:
DJ90 Duplex jaws - 90mm external by 75mm internal dovetail plus 38mm spigot:
I hope this helps
 

nev

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+1 for Keith Rowley's book - best ten quid i ever spent!
Regarding the chuck losing its grip, as well as what is mentioned above, if you are practising on green (unseasoned) wood , it can be very soft and pliable and sometimes be almost impossible to hold with a chuck with a small 'grip'.
 

tsg

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Thanks for the very quick replies.

Yes I have been 'trying' to cut dovetails, but still having problems. For the expansion type hold in the smaller jaws, I first drilled a 20 mm hole with a forstner bit and then tried to dovetail it with a dovetail router bit in the drill. Not very professional I know but the hole seemed ok and a good fit. But it didn't work.

The size of dowel ( I think someone called it a spigot ) that fits these jaws in compression mode is very small and the work piece wobbled all over the place, so I gave up.

Using the larger jaws I needed a 4cm 'spigot' 3cm long and a champher on the next bit. Getting less technical as I speak. This worked well until I started using the parting chisel which caused it to fly out and hit me in the chest!! Not a major problem in itself, but trying to put it back in at exactly the same place proved impossible, thus having to 'round' it again. Eventually after a few tries the little pot I was trying to make with 1cm sides ended up with less than 1mm thickness. I've met blunter knives than my pot!

I think I will take a break and get the book you have recommended, and try to learn how to do it properly. It looks so easy on youtube!

Could it be the wood? Or a problem with the lathe? Or a bad set of chisels? I've never had a problem blaming the tools!

Thanks again

Paul
 

tekno.mage

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As has been said, the Multistar chuck can be somewhat challenging for beginners as you do need to cut the recess or spigot quite accurately to match the size of the jaws. Having said that, I started out with one of those chucks and got on with it reasonably well - but upgraded to a scroll chuck as soon as I could afford one - mainly because the scroll chuck is less fiddy to use - especia;ly when changing from compression to expansion mode.

You say you found the piece came out of the chuck when you were using the parting tool - possibly you are taking too aggressive a cut - you do not need to push the tool hard against the wood when turning. Try a gentler approach - but make sure your tools are sharp. If you have to push hard because it seems like the tools isn't cutting, it's definitely blunt!

The other thing to mention when using any kind of chuck is that it's not just the spigot or recess size that is important - the shoulder of wood against which the front face of the chuck jaws seats needs to be flat or very slightly concave, never convex or the jaws will not grip properly.
 

boysie39

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All of the above ,plus bring your tailstock up to help keep work piece in position .
Get a scroll chuck asap .
 
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