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colinc

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Hi,

Has anyone any experience of using rounding planes to make chair parts (not just the joints)?

I just started turning some cleaved green ash into cylinders and have proved to myself that I am not a very competent Turner. My ability to keep the diameter consistent is lacking. Also my lathe (Record CL4) is not long enough to do the back legs anyway.

I am tempted to buy one of the Ashley Isles rounding planes just to get a feel for them. Also tempted to make one as I cannot find one to buy that is 1-3/8” dia which is what the design calls for.

The alternative is to build a simple router lathe to mill out the cylinders.

Any thoughts?

Colin
 

marcros

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Theory only here but...

Could a third option be to take square stock, remove the corners with a plane to make an octagon, remove the corners again, and again and before you know it you have a round piece.
 

colinc

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Andy, thanks for the link. I hadn’t seen that before, but it shows the general pattern of what I was thinking of making.
 

Tris

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If you are struggling with the consistency of your turning try making a 'go-no go' gauge. Cut a slot the required dimension in an offcut and turn your inboard end down until the slot slips over then work along to get the thickness. A large spanner can be used for a gauge too.

I don't know if it would be strong enough but you could turn the back legs in two parts using a socket and tenon joint.
 

colinc

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Tris":ziy7u9up said:
If you are struggling with the consistency of your turning try making a 'go-no go' gauge. Cut a slot the required dimension in an offcut and turn your inboard end down until the slot slips over then work along to get the thickness. A large spanner can be used for a gauge too.

I don't know if it would be strong enough but you could turn the back legs in two parts using a socket and tenon joint.
I don’t think joining is a option as they are to be bent after turning. Whatever solution I come up with has to work for 42” finished length.

Colin
 

Tris

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Another alternative then would be a spokes have with a curved sole, make a gauge from a piece of wood with a hole of the right size to move along the leg as you go.
If you don't have a copy already I can recommend Mike Abbots Green Woodworking, covers a lot on chairmaking.
 

colinc

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Jacob

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Why not shape in the ordinary way - with plane, draw-knife, spokeshave etc? I have a feeling that rounding planes are just gadgets and not a lot of use. You don't need a shaped or curved tool to make a convex curve of any sort, though you might need one for hollowing concave.
If it's a lathe problem you just need more practice, not another gadget!
Sometimes it's only when you accept that things aren't easy that they start becoming easier.
 

Tris

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I have a couple of Ashem rounding planes and have done a few hundred feet of seasoned oak pegs for timber framing with them. These days I'd sooner turn round stuff on the lathe.
They work very well when set up correctly but you still need a cabinet scraper or similar to get a chair worthy finish in my opinion.
There's always a pole lathe :lol:
 

colinc

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Jacob":2pescjlf said:
Why not shape in the ordinary way - with plane, draw-knife, spokeshave etc? I have a feeling that rounding planes are just gadgets and not a lot of use. You don't need a shaped or curved tool to make a convex curve of any sort, though you might need one for hollowing concave.
If it's a lathe problem you just need more practice, not another gadget!
Sometimes it's only when you accept that things aren't easy that they start becoming easier.
Hi Jacob,

I have already made some seat stretchers that will be covered using a spokeshave, because I like using spokeshaves. (Another story but I acquired two more today). They were quick to make and round enough for their job, but not perfect and I want better accuracy for the visible parts.

The lathe problem is more one of length - I have a record CL4 with the extended bed, but it is not long enough for the back legs.

regards,

Colin
 

Inspector

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colinc":gak61urk said:
Inspector":gak61urk said:
Lee Valley sell Asian Wooden Hollow and Round Planes if you wanted to buy them. They also have the blades on their own if you want to make them. https://www.leevalley.com/en-ca/shop/to ... und-planes

Pete
Pete, they are for round bottom planes I think.

Colin
Look again, only this time click on "Option" to choose between a round iron or a hollow. Click on the "Width" and you get to pick that. Then the price shows up for that size and type of blade.

That said I would just use a spokeshave, rasps and sandpaper. Hollows and rounds were intended for mouldings more than chair making.

Pete
 

colinc

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Inspector":uz71dfej said:
colinc":uz71dfej said:
Inspector":uz71dfej said:
Lee Valley sell Asian Wooden Hollow and Round Planes if you wanted to buy them. They also have the blades on their own if you want to make them. https://www.leevalley.com/en-ca/shop/to ... und-planes

Pete
Pete, they are for round bottom planes I think.

Colin
Look again, only this time click on "Option" to choose between a round iron or a hollow. Click on the "Width" and you get to pick that. Then the price shows up for that size and type of blade.

That said I would just use a spokeshave, rasps and sandpaper. Hollows and rounds were intended for mouldings more than chair making.

Pete
Thanks Pete, what I was thinking of making or buying is like this: https://www.workshopheaven.com/ray-iles ... -25mm.html
 

Jacob

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marcros":4g27jkdl said:
Theory only here but...

Could a third option be to take square stock, remove the corners with a plane to make an octagon, remove the corners again, and again and before you know it you have a round piece.
Yep. Mark the circle at each end so you know where you are, then just join up the marks.
In fact even if you intend to turn then first planing or band sawing the octagon may be the quickest way to get started.
PS you can probably buy longer rails for a C4 if that's the problem. Or extensions https://www.dm-tools.co.uk/product.php/ ... h35AVP7TOQ Might be worth it if this becomes a regular thing.
 

Sheffield Tony

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If it's green wood - the tools are froe/wedges, axe, drawknife. A bit of plywood drilled with a hole the size you want as a gauge is useful. Squint down it to judge straight, but don't worry about a bit of a curve if you're going to steam bend - you can use it to advantage. Indeed if the wood is as straight as I get from my forester mate, go with the grain and with a bit of luck you might not need to bend it at all :lol: If need be, finish with a concave based spokeshave and/or a concave card scraper when it had dried a bit - they don't work that well on green wood. Sandpaper should not be required (and it is awful on green wood).
 

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Hi Colin
Two things that spring to mind.
RXH's plane here.
the-ebbsfleet-plane-t120547.html
Strikes me that, blessed as we are with a surfeit of old woodies in the uk, an enterprising chap might hot glue a block of scrap to the bed of one then drill a hole with an auger bit through most of the scrap and the desired radial outside diameter in the bed of the plane. Sorting the iron would be cinch I'd guess with some care. You might even do a couple of radiai. If radiai is a real word.
Moulding planes but bigger.
The other option is a heelshave.
*winks at AndyT* :wink:
(Aye it's still in the drawer Andy. I know...). :roll:
https://www.tooltique.co.uk/shop/vintag ... furbished/
Cheers
Chris
 

Jacob

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colinc":1fy2k4bv said:
......I want better accuracy for the visible parts......
That's OK then you just mean the appearance of accuracy! Accuracy is in the eye of the beholder.
I really think you just need to persist with ordinary hand tools until it comes out right. I'm often amazed at how some very nice looking old furniture is made only just good enough to pass, when you look at it closely. Not crude, but expedient.
Rounding plane will need finishing anyway so you are back to hand tools or sand paper.
 

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