Traditional tools are forged from carbon tool steel and then hardened and tempered to tahe a very nice cutting edge. However, it doesn't last very long. When sharpening carbon steel, great care is needed not to overheat the tool as it will begin to lose hardness as low as 150*0; at 300'C the structure will be destroyed. This is less of a problem on the newer, cooler cutting ruby and blue ceramic wheels, wetstone grinders and the belt grinders.
Most turning tools are now made from highspeed steel (HSS). Some are forged, but they are mainly machined from square or round stock. M2 is a standard HSS stock; it takes a nice edge and is longer lasting than a carbon steel edge. There is less chance of losing the hardness through overheating while sharpening - as the steel has to reach 580'C, which is most unlikely while sharpening on the correct stone. When grinding HSS never quench it in water or oil; the sudden change in temperature causes thermal shock and results in hairline fractures on the cutting edge. If your tool gets hot, put it down and walk away for a while. HSS in the form of powder metallurgy has a more even distribution of carbon throughout the steel. This can give you a marginal increase in hardness on larger section tools but is rarely used on smaller sections due to the lack of grain structure and therefore tensile strength. Be aware that powder metallurgy steel doesn't guarantee a good tool, rather it is the heat treatment that gives you the hardness and toughness combined. Some manufacturers use a single temper on turning tools, others use a triple temper. Single-tempered powder metallurgy will not out-perform a triple-tempered standard M2. After all, powder material is M2. There are a few tungsten-tipped tools, they are long lasting but don't have the same keen edges as carbon or HSS tools and also require special sharpening wheels.
Never make turning tools from old (or new) files, because they are very brittle (hard but not tough). Each cross-hatch mark is a potential fracture poinl and the small, soft tang is not strong enough to take some of the turning forces.
Handle details and characteristics
i ~~~ Feirulc for strength
Drilled for stock
Matt surface for secure grip
Wood - ash or similar
Narrow section and grip for holding and rolling the tool in the lingers
Widening section for poftci grip
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There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.