new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

discussion of the niceties of turning on a bow, bungee or pole lathe.

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new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby robin wood » Wed Aug 14, 2013 8:44 am

Has anyone read this one? http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/Searc ... adle+lathe
Is it any good?
http://www.robin-wood.co.uk bowls, books and courses
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Re: new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby woodness sake » Wed Aug 14, 2013 11:56 am

This is a pdf link where you can see most of the book on line. Not much in the way of actual tool use and somewhat confusing at that. How is it that no one shows that a hollow must be taken in stages for instance? Did not endear me to treadle wheel/turning.
http://archive.org/stream/woodturning00 ... 0/mode/2up
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Re: new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby renaissanceww » Fri Dec 13, 2013 4:33 pm

It was a bit of a disappointment actually. Lots about jigs and fixtures for holding on a a flywheel lathe but really no mention of the eccentricities of working with a foot powered lathe. Nothing at all on handling tools and any turning techniques. There are some interesting exercises but again nothing about the execution of them. An there is nothing whatsoever about a reciprocal lathe. So in short, pass on it.
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Re: new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby veto » Fri Nov 07, 2014 1:11 am

A flywheel lathe and a foot treadle lathe are not necessarily different animals, in fact they can be, indeed often are, one and the same. I suspect that a springpole possibly could use a flywheel but not very successfully as the initial inertia would be difficult to start even when ferreting out to a fine balance and the ending inertia would be even more difficult for the change of motion as it is building during the stroke. Da Vinci's lathe was likely with a flywheel and if it is not shown in that manner it could not have been to long before someone figured it out because after all inertia is the name of the game in turning. So while the springpole and variants are a favorite of our greenwood endeavors it strikes me that with the Romans being in the area of Britain that coincided with springpoles that their style did not over take the springpole. And the most likely reason I can muster for that phenomenon is the portability. Does anyone know what the oldest springpole archetype may have been? I have seen posts which discuss the likelihood of it being a Viking tool and feel that is a credible path to explore, again any input?
It is easy when thinking in our present tense to word phrases such that it ends up saying something a bit different than our intention so I am just making comment and questioning other venues. Terry V.
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Re: new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby Steve Martin » Fri Nov 07, 2014 1:39 am

I am under the impression that the oldest known representation of a spring pole lathe is a stained glass window in a 13th century cathedral in Chartre, France. If there is an earlier example, I would love to know what it is.
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Re: new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby veto » Sun Nov 30, 2014 8:45 am

I ordered this book and it is not indispensable by any means. It is more about continuous rotation and the variations of that type of machine. The machine would be similar to the W.F. & John Barnes models that show up from time to time in the states, don't know if they were ever sent over the pond. I feel it is not particularly helpful to the pole lathe concept.
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Re: new old book wood turning on a foot treadle lathe

Postby jrccaim » Mon Mar 02, 2015 5:57 am

veto wrote:A flywheel lathe and a foot treadle lathe are not necessarily different animals, in fact they can be, indeed often are, one and the same. I suspect that a springpole possibly could use a flywheel but not very successfully as the initial inertia would be difficult to start even when ferreting out to a fine balance and the ending inertia would be even more difficult for the change of motion as it is building during the stroke.


If you have a treadle-operated lathe -- a continous motion lathe -- you must have a flywheel. Push down on the treadle. The work will revolve until you get to the bottom of the stroke. Then it will stop. Unless you have a flywheel. The flywheel is an inertia-storing device. When you pushed down the treadle you started the flywheel into motion. Inertia wins: when you get to the bottom of the stroke the wheel will will keep going, carrying the treadle with it, until you get to top center, at which time you push down again. This (1) spins the work (2) puts some more inertia into the flywheeel. Oh, yes, Leonardo drew a huge flywheel into his "tornio" drawing. It was huge because, presumably, it was made of wood. So he needed a big radius to compensate for the lack of mass. If you have a cast iron flywheel (as the 19th century did) you can get by with, ohh, 50 cm radius and twenty kilo weight, but the weight should be out on the rims because, to simplify the physics, it has more leverage there.

Even the humble mororcar needs a flywheel to keep it from stopping once one of the pistons gets to the bottom of the stroke :)
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