Making Woodworking Tools

I am getting into woodworking and I would like to make some of my own tools.

Could any of you gentlemen tell me if it is feasable to try to grind or mill a groove in 4142 steel with a 16 inch drillpress? If so, what kind of cooling fluid would I need? Or would it be easier to grind the groove with a angle grinder in some sort of holding jig?

Any suggestions or help will be appreciated!!!!!!


Reply to
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I'm inclined to suggest the making the groove with a drill press is an insane idea, but perhaps you can be a little more specific. Certainly, anything is possible, but the typical drill press is not well suited to loads that are applied to the side of the spindle. One of the "benefits" of doing so is the chuck dropping off when under load. I can see where that could be rather intimidating, depending on the circumstances at hand.


Reply to
Harold & Susan Vordos

If you're trying to make a gouge, there are better ways to do it. If you're at all serious about it, there was a book published back in the '70s that was all about making carving tools, and it was written for the beginner.

The title is _The Making Of Tools_, by Alexander G. Weygers. I've seen it in libraries; Amazon claims to have a few copies, probably used, and the price is less than $10.

It will tell you how to choose a useful steel for the job; how to shape it; how to heat-treat it; how to affix handles and how to sharpen it. A good book. I'm critical about how-to books in general, and especially about books that purport to teach you how to heat-treat a piece of steel with a torch, but this one is the real thing.

Reply to
Ed Huntress

I recall being told that that was one of a couple books grafted together into the book "The Complete Modern Blacksmith"

On checking my bookshelf, the first section (pages 7 thru 92) are labeled "The Making of Tools"

Available from Lee Valley Tools, among others.

Cheers Trevor Jones

Reply to
Trevor Jones

And, as a matter of fact, we got to see that exact thing happening to Mikey at Orange County Choppers while drilling holes for (I think) mounting the handlebars of his bike on the show earlier this week. He got into some serious vibration, and, when he released pressure on the drill, it dropped right out of the spindle. Pretty funny. Regards dave mundt

Reply to
Dave Mundt

Maybe the drill press realized it was working in a harley davidson shop, and that it was mandatory to shed parts at given intervals....!



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Reply to
jim rozen

Good one Jim! Kinda reminds me of the Harley conversion kit for Jap bikes. It'd make them puke out a pint of oil every time you stopped.


Reply to
Bob Swinney

Very possible. Same author, and I've heard a couple of people recommend the blacksmith book. It's also available from Amazon, etc.

Ed Huntress

Reply to
Ed Huntress

Forget milling in the drill press, the thing just isn't designed to do it. What you can do is to chain drill a bunch of blind holes to remove the material and then go back with a cape chisel to remove the webs, finish up with some sort of grinder, it'll be as precision as you are.

If you're making a gouge or cutting tool and not a jig, it's probably better to get geared up for a little blacksmithing. The Weygers book mentioned by the other posters is good, if dated. I've also got a thin volume called the $50 Knife Shop which has a bunch of ideas on low-cost shop-made smithing equipment including belt grinders, Junkyard Wars meets the would-be bladesmith. It's a collection of columns from Blade magazine by Wayne Goddard. Some of the "theory" he presents is pretty hokey, but the basic tooling ideas are sound. I'd make hand woodworking cutting tools from O-1, it's really easy to work in the annealed state and hardens well, even with less-than-optimum equipment, if you follow the instructions. Don't buy O-1 if it doesn't come with heat-treat instructions, either wrapped in them or in the catalog.


Reply to
Stan Schaefer

I have made many tools from OCS (Old Chevy Spring). Doesn't have to be Chevy, rally but old leaf or coil springs can be annealed and worked and oil hardened and tempered.


Reply to
Ted Edwards

"The Complete Modern Blacksmith" will _not_ tell you how to heat treat tools. It's one of the worst books I've ever been fool enough to buy, it has almost no smithing in it, and the section on heat treatment is inaccurate rubbish.

If you are making WW tools, the Intermediate Technology people (Schumacher's lot) have a book or two on how to do this, from found materials, and with minimal equipment.

-- Die Gotterspammerung - Junkmail of the Gods

Reply to
Andy Dingley

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