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Wood Turning Project: Spindle Turning: Mallet #1; page 1

Turning the Head

Shop mallets are among those handy tools that you never knew you needed until you have one and start looking for it all the time. They are easy to make with some simple advice on setting the handle. Some of the skills developed are
  • roughing a square round
  • cutting to a known diameter
  • decorative lines
  • fitting a handle
  • use of a jam chuck or a four-jaw chuck
The tools used will be a roughing gouge, skew, parting tool, and a caliper.
woodworking lathe project: mallet
To start with you need a square about 6" long by 3 1/4" square and one about 10 1/2" long by 1 /14" square. Mark the ends for center. Here I am using some spalted elm. We are following the diagram in Milton and Wohlers. wood turning project:mallet: materials image
Mount the large square between centers and turn it round. Measure with parting tool and calipers to 2 1/2" and turn the cylinder to the measure. wood turning project:mallet: head roughed image
Mark off far enough from the left to avoid the center of the spur center, 2 1/2" farther in to mark center of the head and 2 1/2" farther for the end. woodturning project mallet: marking off the head
Part in to about 3/4" on either end. With the skew make a radiused taper toward each end from the middle. Round off the ends. Mark off for the decorative lines and either make a couple of "V" cuts or make a bead between each pair. woodturning project mallet: turning to the marks
Part off the head and remove the remainder of the tenons. Mount the head in a jam chuck or high jaws in a four jaw chuck. This will allow for precise centering of the handle in the head. Even a little bit off will ruin the feel of the mallet. woodworking lathe accessory: jaws

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