All Workshop

Over engineered Lathe Duplicator attachment

The following math formula results in another project:

Rottweiler + Chair = Project


A friend’s Rottweiler wasn’t getting roughage and she developed a taste for wood…especially their oak dining room chair spindles.

1st attempt – the tried and true method is to turn the spindles by hand.  It is definitely a task that requires some practice.  My first attempt looked like a spindle from a completely different style of furniture.

2nd attempt – I decided to update my wood lathe with a duplicator attachment.  I didn’t like the way the commercial ones looked so I decided to build my own.  Mounted a piece of plywood to the lathe bed and then made a block out of a stack of plywood so that it was even with the wood blank.  I used a carbide cutter from a metal lathe and it was working good…until it caught an edge of the blank and got pulled under the turning.  The end result was a partial spindle in 4 pieces.

3rd attempt – replaced the carbide cutter with a 1/2″ Sorby gouge.  I figured I would have more control with a long handle tool.  I was wrong.

4th attempt – didn’t even get to the testing phase…

5th attempt – it’s not a real project until the welder is turned on…hehe.  Using steel from a bedframe, handles from a junked Bridgeport, parts from a basketball arcade game and a vintage trim router, it is now able to make a round blank.  With the added profile track above the center line, I can now reproduce just about any profile.

Future improvements

  • Calculate the rotation and linear distance to create spiral designs.
  • Add a Deflector to keep the chips from flying all over
  • Replace handles with computer controlled stepper motors and use the system to create intricate designs programmed on the computer.

I shall name it DUPLI-FORGE!



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