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 Post subject: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:39 am 
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Location: Atlanta, GA
Hello all,
I'm still working on trying to complete my first pipe and had a general question about blind side shaping. I'm using a french wheel and a belt at times. My blind side tends to come out pretty wonky and flat compared to the other. When I'm working on the the blind side I feel akin to writing with my non-dominant hand. I've heard I should shape my blind side first. Any advice would be appreciated.

Best,
Tom Image

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:10 am 
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Location: Zimmerman, MN
I use a belt sander for the blind side.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:53 am 
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Thanks Jeremiah.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 12:03 pm 
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Its something that will get better with practise, turn out a few hundred pipes and you will be ok.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 12:14 pm 
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Appreciated Chris.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:19 pm 
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I know that doesn't help your situation a lot, but I am afraid it is the simple answer to a lot of these types of questions, the old phrase still holds true, practise makes perfect.
FWIW that is looking good, especially for a first pipe.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:04 pm 
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I just recently made myself a French wheel and mounted the motor much lower than where the 36 grit wheel sits on my lathe. I've found that between looking down on the disc and bring able to hold the workpiece lower without the lathe bed getting in the way, I get a decent view of the blind side if I shape near the bottom of the wheel and peak at it from the right side instead of the left. It was actually a pretty dramatic difference just from changing my vantage point.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:00 am 
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I just use the opposite side of the french wheel. I would reverse spin on the VFD if it were a significant issue. Practice and taking it slow like Chris said is your best bet.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:10 am 
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caskwith wrote:
I know that doesn't help your situation a lot, but I am afraid it is the simple answer to a lot of these types of questions, the old phrase still holds true, practise makes perfect.
FWIW that is looking good, especially for a first pipe.

It does help and it's nice to be reminded that while I'm so focused of THIS pipe, learning the craft is a long journey.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:14 am 
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wdteipen wrote:
I just use the opposite side of the french wheel. I would reverse spin on the VFD if it were a significant issue. Practice and taking it slow like Chris said is your best bet.

Cool Wayne, I tried using the opposite side of my wheel, but forgot about basic shop safety. I didn't reverse the rotation. I'm lucky I had safety glasses on. Ouch! Won't do that again. Thanks.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:16 am 
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Ratimus wrote:
I just recently made myself a French wheel and mounted the motor much lower than where the 36 grit wheel sits on my lathe. I've found that between looking down on the disc and bring able to hold the workpiece lower without the lathe bed getting in the way, I get a decent view of the blind side if I shape near the bottom of the wheel and peak at it from the right side instead of the left. It was actually a pretty dramatic difference just from changing my vantage point.

I'll play around with the different angles I can get line of site at. Thx.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:29 pm 
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Location: Taneytown, Maryland
Practice is certainly key and like Wayne, I'll use the other side of the disc if needed. Just take it slow and keep a good grip on the block. Nice first pipe!


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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:16 pm 
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jthomas wrote:
Practice is certainly key and like Wayne, I'll use the other side of the disc if needed. Just take it slow and keep a good grip on the block. Nice first pipe!

Thanks Jthomas.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:56 am 
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I am working on my 61st- 74th pipes this century and do most of my final shaping with files. Changing the angle, switching hands, sitting, standing and looming over the work and twisting backward, and holding the piece against my chest and filing are all things that I do to reach the blind side. Switching hands is like writing with my left hand, but with practice it gets better.
I will say that it my impatient youth, I rarely (if ever) touched a piece of briar with a file. Now I have more money tied up in files than I have in my (admittedly cheap) lathe.
I also find that working on several pieces concurrently and going from one to another seems to help my particular style. I will often find something that needs tweaking when I have let a piece sit for a day or two while working on other pieces.
It all boils down to practice, and TIAFO (try it and find out) as Premal Chheda says. You will find the most suitable (to you) techniques, equipment and methods as you do more pipes.
DocAitch

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:54 pm 
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DocAitch wrote:
I am working on my 61st- 74th pipes this century and do most of my final shaping with files. Changing the angle, switching hands, sitting, standing and looming over the work and twisting backward, and holding the piece against my chest and filing are all things that I do to reach the blind side. Switching hands is like writing with my left hand, but with practice it gets better.
I will say that it my impatient youth, I rarely (if ever) touched a piece of briar with a file. Now I have more money tied up in files than I have in my (admittedly cheap) lathe.
I also find that working on several pieces concurrently and going from one to another seems to help my particular style. I will often find something that needs tweaking when I have let a piece sit for a day or two while working on other pieces.
It all boils down to practice, and TIAFO (try it and find out) as Premal Chheda says. You will find the most suitable (to you) techniques, equipment and methods as you do more pipes.
DocAitch

Thanks so much Doc.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:49 pm 
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Also, when you compare side to side for symmetry, you might find it helpful to use a contour gauge. This is a column of pins which, when pressed against a solid material, takes on that profile. About $8 at Home Depot.
DocAitch

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:13 pm 
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I've been following this thread for a week, and am still not sure what "blind side" means.

Do some of you guys actually have things set up where you can't see straight down, so must blindly push the work away from you into a sanding disc or belt?

If so, holy shit. You are making this shaping thing MUCH more difficult than it needs to be. As in, no wonder so many people ditch this hobby after a few tries. :shock:

Set things up so you can always clearly see a light gap between the material and the abrasive, and you can control things down to a millimeter or so. Further rig it so your body + elbows/forearms are braced, and you're down to hundredths of an inch. Rig it so your body + wrists are braced, and thousandths will become your bitch.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:16 pm 
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I interpreted this to mean the side which is most awkward to work. I can see all of the pipe but some areas seem awkward and require cutting with the very edge of the of the wheel, and it is difficult to judge the thickness of the chamber wall and achieve symmetry when you work one side from the top and the other side from the bottom.
I can see it and I do it, but I understand what the OP is experiencing.
DocAitch

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:40 pm 
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Yes. Blind side I took to be the side where you have to use the opposite side of the wheel or the edge. This is why I tend to use the belt sander. But my arbor is at an angle so i can see straight down on it.

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 Post subject: Re: Blind side shaping
PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:05 am 
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LatakiaLover wrote:
I've been following this thread for a week, and am still not sure what "blind side" means.

Do some of you guys actually have things set up where you can't see straight down, so must blindly push the work away from you into a sanding disc or belt?

If so, holy shit. You are making this shaping thing MUCH more difficult than it needs to be. As in, no wonder so many people ditch this hobby after a few tries. :shock:

Set things up so you can always clearly see a light gap between the material and the abrasive, and you can control things down to a millimeter or so. Further rig it so your body + elbows/forearms are braced, and you're down to hundredths of an inch. Rig it so your body + wrists are braced, and thousandths will become your bitch.


Not quite, at least not in my case. The blind side is the side of the pipe which is shaped either upside down or back to front due to both the rotation of the disc and also your own preference being left or right handed. There is always one side of a pipe that is harder to shape than the other, even if you have a we set up disc (which I do)

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