Woodchucker Mandrel archive
Thursday 29 April 2010
Available from Craft Supplies USA, Mark Sanger tries out this handy piece of tooling
I could not wait to use the Woodchucker Mandrel as my work primarily involves making hollow forms. Generally I use a roughed down friction drive held in my chuck and finish the bases of my forms with the running tailcentre, which is used to apply pressure to the base. I was interested to review this mandrel and see what benefits it could give me.
In useOn occasions, on thin walled forms, I have found my method wanting as the pressure from the tailstock has caused cracking on the front face of the form.
The mandrel is well made and solid and comes with a central bar onto which fits a 75mm (3in) faceplate - a tapered turned friction drive made from waste wood to fit the opening of the form is then screwed to this. The end of the mandrel accepts any sanding pad with a 6mm (1/4in) diameter shank. The faceplate is adjustable to any location on the mandrel, enabling the base of forms up to 405mm (16in) in depth to be finished. The faceplate provides support at the top of the form and the sanding pad adds extra support by sandwiching the base between the pad and the tailcentre. I found that this added support to turn the base of my form down to a few millimetres without any flexing or chattering being encountered.