Around the Woods

Make an articulated tip hollowing tool

"Wood turners are articulate when they need to be."

One of the difficulties I have run into as some of the hollow forms I have been turning have gotten a little more complicated, is the reaching into certain areas, especially around the rim. I concluded that I needed an adjustable or articulated hollowing tool. The following is what I have come up with, although it is subject to a bit of tweaking. It seems to be working well.
First of all I hunted in the scrap bin and found a piece of 5/16" steel. 1/4" would have done but I work with what I have. It is mounted in a vise and marked to cut off a piece about 3" x 5/8" . I used an angle grinder but a hack saw would do fine if a bit slower. woodturning tool image
Next I mounted a piece of 5/8" cold rolled steel rod and measured to cut off about 10". woodturning tool image
That piece goes back into the vise ready to have the end ground to a receiving platform. Again I am using an angle grinder but if you do not have one, it could be ground on the grinder. woodturning tool image
Here are a couple of shots of the receiving platform ground to about the half way part of the rod and about 7/8" long. woodturning tool image
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The rod and bar. woodturning tool image
The bar is cut to 2" long and the ends slightly rounded. woodturning tool image
Now to the drill press where the bar is drilled on each end, one to 13/64" to receive a tapping for a 6m x 1 bolt and the other to 15/64" to receive another bolt without tapping. Your bolt may vary in size so drill accordingly. The receiving platform on the rod is drilled to be tapped. woodturning tool image
The bar and rod are tapped as necessary. woodturning tool image
The parts ready for assembly. From the upper left, a 3/16" cutting tip, 6mm washer, 6mm bolt, articulating bar, 6mm bolt, shaft. woodturning tool image
Assembled upper and lower view. woodturning tool image
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Finally, here it is mounted in a home made arm brace, ready to be used. Any hollowing tool with the cutting tip so far from the angle of rotation will have a lot of torque so an arm brace helps to give control. woodturning tool image
Not able to leave well enough alone, I made a few changes. First of all I made a shorter arm and then changed from hex cap bolts to a pan head for the cutter and flat head for the arms. I also countersunk for the flat head screws. Here is, starting from the upper left, the cutting tip, washer, pan head screw, flat head screws, short arm, long arm, and shaft. woodturning tool image
I now have several options: long arm woodturning tool image
short arm woodturning tool image
both arms woodturning tool image

If you make one please let me know how it turned out.

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