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#1
As I watch pipe making video for example Scott Hudson and joe case I see them use something looking like a xy compound sled on their lathe with cutters attached like a tennon cutter and for life of me cannot find the device that looks like the sled except on metal lathes I did find tennon cutter with no problem
 
#4
Thanks all. When looking at Scott Hudson and joe cases video they look like wood lathes. Also I was looking at the tennon cutter on Vermont free hand but also looking at stems in which they say no longer have tennons cut due to them selling the cutter but how in the world would you hold these odd shaped stems in a chuck or vice to drill them to except the cutters guide and cutter. I have been cutting the tennon on my on stems while on the lathe but was looking for something more exact
 

Sasquatch

Wizzard
Staff member
#5
Tenon cutting tools are usually run in drill presses, and you line up the pin in the tool with the airway in a pre-made stem. Lathes where you can chuck up a stem will not line the airway up for such a device, the airway in premade stems seldom having anything to do with center proper. But again, if you have a lathe and can spin a stem, you have the thing beat, even doing it with hand tools is probably better than many tenon cutters.

But the answer is, pipe makers work on metal lathes. We rig it up with all kinds of BS so we can hold rod, or blocks, or whatever, and some of us are lucky enough to have more than one lathe in the shop. But if you are watching videos where guys have a machine carriage on their lathe, they are working on a metal lathe, it really is that simple, and it really is that common. It's the best all around tool for the job, so it's what we all use.

There's lots of ways to make this work, including delrin inserts for exact .250 or .315 tenons.... but the best, biggest, most accurate overall answer, is, buy a 12x36" metal lathe and about a thousand bucks in tooling and chucks, and the world is your oyster.
 
#7
Tenon cutting tools are usually run in drill presses, and you line up the pin in the tool with the airway in a pre-made stem. Lathes where you can chuck up a stem will not line the airway up for such a device, the airway in premade stems seldom having anything to do with center proper. But again, if you have a lathe and can spin a stem, you have the thing beat, even doing it with hand tools is probably better than many tenon cutters.

But the answer is, pipe makers work on metal lathes. We rig it up with all kinds of BS so we can hold rod, or blocks, or whatever, and some of us are lucky enough to have more than one lathe in the shop. But if you are watching videos where guys have a machine carriage on their lathe, they are working on a metal lathe, it really is that simple, and it really is that common. It's the best all around tool for the job, so it's what we all use.

There's lots of ways to make this work, including delrin inserts for exact .250 or .315 tenons.... but the best, biggest, most accurate overall answer, is, buy a 12x36" metal lathe and about a thousand bucks in tooling and chucks, and the world is your oyster.
Lol sounds like almost a plan. Thanks Gents.
 

DGErwin11

Supreme Curmudgeon
Staff member
Patron
#8
If you decide to go with a wood lathe and the VF cutter, I have had good success with the following procedure for premade stems. It might could work on made from rod stems with some adjustments.

The instructions say to drill it to 1/8'' for the pilot pin. In the drill chuck on the tail stock chuck up a 7/32'' drill bit backwards and slide the bit on. This will help center the bit in the chuck on the headstock. Drill the airway being careful to not drill too deep. You may have to sacrifice a stem or 2 finding the right depth. Chuck up the cutter n the tail stock and cut your tenon. Don't forget to funnel the end. I always went slightly over size and did final fitting with sandpaper. Test frequently. Once you have a good fit, leave it on through the rest of the stummel shaping.

The standard premade as described above will whistle 99% of the time. Invest in some needle files and the Kemper slot tool at VF.

Pipemakersforum.com is an invaluable resource. A hint to get along over there. They will freely give advice and critiques. Incorporate them or not. Just don't tell them their advice is crap. They will eat you alive. These are folks who have paid their dues and turn out $300.00 pipes day after day. But if you react positively they will bend over backwards to help
 

Adam Bybee

Well-known member
#13
As I watch pipe making video for example Scott Hudson and joe case I see them use something looking like a xy compound sled on their lathe with cutters attached like a tennon cutter and for life of me cannot find the device that looks like the sled except on metal lathes I did find tennon cutter with no problem
This may not be 100% true, but the existence of a compound slide is kinda what defines a "metal lathe" and a large part of the reason that they're much more expensive. A lot of the expensive, precision moving parts are in the compound. It's like saying "I want to get a car, but have it modified to raise it up, add a bed on the back and bump the horsepower so I can haul things with it". It sounds like what you actually want is a pickup truck.

They really should just call them woodturning lathes vs. machining lathes.
 

Ernie Q

Well-known member
Sales
#14
I think @Ernie Q recently got one.
I just purchased a “Cross Slide for Wood Lathes” by CueMan Billiards here. I upgraded to the larger 1’ model. It came with a tool post fit for 1/4” inch bits and a couple tools that are completely inadequate for Briar, so I went back and ordered a tool post cut for 12mm bits and purchased some Indexable bits elsewhere. I have a Delta Midi Lathe and I needed to shim the cross slide up with a piece of plywood to center the bit on the work, but other than that it bolts right to the split bed quite securely.
It’s not a fast turn but if you take small bites it’ll turn a bowl and shank no problem.I haven’t tried it for stems but I thin it’ll be fine. It’s by no means a professional setup but it’ll get me started.

E
 

Ernie Q

Well-known member
Sales
#16
I just purchased a “Cross Slide for Wood Lathes” by CueMan Billiards here. I upgraded to the larger 1’ model. It came with a tool post fit for 1/4” inch bits and a couple tools that are completely inadequate for Briar, so I went back and ordered a tool post cut for 12mm bits and purchased some Indexable bits elsewhere. I have a Delta Midi Lathe and I needed to shim the cross slide up with a piece of plywood to center the
@Ernie Q
Can you snap a pic of your setup?
I would like to get a cross slide,
but am leery of it not fitting my
Grizzly woodlathe.
I will do so when I get home. Chris Hightower over at CueMan will be able to tell you if it will fit your lathe. It's not a bad little unit, but I will say that the plywood base it is mounted to is TOTALLY inadequate. I plan on mounting it to a piece of 5/4 oak with longer screws. You might ask him if a metal base is an option as well, because it's just not right for briar....I can see it breaking if the tool ever catches on the piece....the plywood, that is.
 

Ernie Q

Well-known member
Sales
#17
@Ernie Q
Can you snap a pic of your setup?
I would like to get a cross slide,
but am leery of it not fitting my
Grizzly woodlathe.
Ok here are a few pics- I replaced the flimsy 3/4 plywood base with a 1.5” thick birch slab I had hanging around. You need the point of the cutter to be equal to the height of the lathe’s center point so you may need a thicker or thinner base depending on your machine. I absolutely suggest you remove and replace the plywood base with hardwood or metal if you can work with it.
In the chuck is a piece of birch I was messing around with.
Look...this is a temporary “less” expensive way for me to start learning and see if pipemaking is within my scope. It is by no means a final solution- it will allow you to rough turn a stem and bowl from a block that has been bandsaws to basic dimensions but that’s about it. I haven’t tried it yet but I think it will do ok for stems too.
E.
I will do so when I get home. Chris Hightower over at CueMan will be able to tell you if it will fit your lathe. It's not a bad little unit, but I will say that the plywood base it is mounted to is TOTALLY inadequate. I plan on mounting it to a piece of 5/4 oak with longer screws. You might ask him if a metal base is an option as well, because it's just not right for briar....I can see it breaking if the tool ever catches on the piece....the plywood, that is.
00C97A2C-5089-40C6-85FC-0AFD6A210D95.jpeg C31A2299-7E4E-496E-8FCE-14E700D86409.jpeg 42386FC6-99A9-4CB3-95A7-DD1E43AE1199.jpeg 50A001F0-632B-40E4-8751-FA644295CDD0.jpeg 00C97A2C-5089-40C6-85FC-0AFD6A210D95.jpeg C31A2299-7E4E-496E-8FCE-14E700D86409.jpeg 42386FC6-99A9-4CB3-95A7-DD1E43AE1199.jpeg 50A001F0-632B-40E4-8751-FA644295CDD0.jpeg 1E60CBAC-F804-4F9C-94CB-82F0AAD07654.jpeg
 

Ernie Q

Well-known member
Sales
#18
UPDATE: when and if any novice purchases tool bits for their cross slide, please consider the following

Ernie Bought a cross slide. Ernie needed a turning tool for his cross slide. Ernie purchased a "Left Hand" turning tool instead of a Right handed tool for his cross slide because "what the Hell is the difference". Ernie proceeded to use the Left hand turning tool in the wrong direction (Right to Left). Ernie watched in horror as the tool caught on the briar and completely ripped the cross slide from the solid birch base. Don't be like Ernie.
Honestly guys....ask questions and assume nothing when working with machinist tools. I lost a tool base which I was able to replace...I could have easily lost a finger or worse.

E.
 

StillLearning

Well-known member
#20
UPDATE: when and if any novice purchases tool bits for their cross slide, please consider the following

Ernie Bought a cross slide. Ernie needed a turning tool for his cross slide. Ernie purchased a "Left Hand" turning tool instead of a Right handed tool for his cross slide because "what the Hell is the difference". Ernie proceeded to use the Left hand turning tool in the wrong direction (Right to Left). Ernie watched in horror as the tool caught on the briar and completely ripped the cross slide from the solid birch base. Don't be like Ernie.
Honestly guys....ask questions and assume nothing when working with machinist tools. I lost a tool base which I was able to replace...I could have easily lost a finger or worse.

E.
I was scratching my head some kinda hard looking at that tool.