Introduction: Wood Turning Tool

Picture of Wood Turning Tool

Turn a wood turning tool

Step 1: Prepare Wood for Handle

Picture of Prepare Wood for Handle

Drill a 1/2" hole half way down the vertical axis of the handle to accommodate the key stock.

Step 2: Turn the Wood

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Turn the wood into the desired shape for the handle.

Step 3: Drill Pipe Cap

Picture of Drill Pipe Cap

Obtain 1" copper pipe cap and drill a hole into the center.

Step 4: Grind Copper Cap

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Grind out the center of the copper cap until a smooth hole accommodates the key stock.

Step 5: Obtain 3/8in Key Stock

Picture of Obtain 3/8in Key Stock

Cut the key stock to the desired length.

Step 6: Drill Pilot Hole

Picture of Drill Pilot Hole

Drill a pilot hole in the end of the key stock.

Step 7: Tap the Hole

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Tap the pilot hole with an 8NC32 bit.

Step 8: Clear the Tap

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Clear the tap of debris.

Step 9: Grind Key Stock

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Grind the tap hole side of the key stock to accommodate the turning blade.

Step 10: Sand the Handle

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Sand the handle while still on the lathe.

Step 11: Finish Sanding

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Remove the handle from the lathe and finish sanding the handle ends.

Step 12: Polyurethane the Handle

Picture of Polyurethane the Handle

Use 3-4 coats of polyurethane. Sand between coats.

Step 13: Expoxy Key Stock to Handle

Picture of Expoxy Key Stock to Handle

Use epoxy to fasten the key stock to the inside of the handle. Also epoxy the end cap to the handle.

Step 14: Hot Glue Exposed Wood

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Use a hot glue gun with coloured glue to cover the exposed wood between the cap and the end of the handle.

Step 15: Attach Blade

Picture of Attach Blade

Screw the blade to the key stock.

Step 16: Turn Your Next Project Using Your New Tool

Picture of Turn Your Next Project Using Your New Tool


Verga (author)2015-11-16

Neat idea. Amazon also sells different types of replacement cutters. If you put a 45 degree bend in this and add the Ci5 or one of the diamond tipped cutters you could use this for hollow vessel turning. Just make sure of the screw size, some are #4-40 not the #8-32. Of course for the price these are you could just make several with different size tapped holes. The handle on amazon was $129.00

Yonatan24 (author)Verga2016-08-23

Why would a wood turner by a wood turned handle for making a woodturning tool?

That makes no sense...

Poppopaj5t (author)Yonatan242017-10-14

Maybe they don't a knife to turn it with? With this project complete they won't need to buy the next one... :-)

Verga (author)Yonatan242016-08-23

Not everyone has the metalworking ability to bend it to the proper shape or to do the thread tapping.

Yonatan24 (author)Verga2016-08-24

I think that anyone that has a lathe can tap holes at 90 degrees.

For the price of one tool, you can buy a whole set of taps and dies that would last you a lifetime, and buy wood and all the other materials that are needed. Plus you could also make them to the exact size and shape that you want...

charleyrocknroll (author)Verga2015-11-22

yikes. $129..I like to fish and I see many internet posts about making your own lures. I don't consider myself a "handy man", but I AM a tight wad with my money. With the idea I could save money making my own fishing lures, I've considered researching tool and material costs, just haven't done it yet. $129 for the first wood turning tool, tells me I may be financially better off, right where I am now, buying my lures. Just being curious, do you have an idea where I would search for a wood lathe, if there is a small one, I could use to turn cigar shaped pieces of wood for fishing lures? I know where to get a wire shaping machine to make spinner baits, as well as molds for lead lures and sinkers. I've done the lead mold thing, years ago, after a construction friend gave a me a 15# chunk of lead. I actually used up the 15#s of lead. I was in the auto parts industry, and had an auto repair shop that did front end alignment on vehicles. He would give me a 5 gallon bucket of discarded wheel weights. Not the best quality of lead and steel clips to contend with, but the lead worked fine for what I used it for.

dwhite0 (author)charleyrocknroll2015-11-22

Harbor Freight Tools has one. I've been using one for a couple of years. Cheap and variable speed.

charleyrocknroll (author)dwhite02015-11-23

I looked at the HARBOR FREIGHT site for a lathe. I think it showed four different ones. Which one do you have?

JeffA2 (author)charleyrocknroll2015-11-24

I know you said that you don't consider yourself a handyman, but if you're at least willing to try, you can DIY a lathe from nothing more than a drill and some scraps of wood. (That's on the minimal end of the scale, but it would be a good first project to use a couple of times, and it would give you the opportunity to discover what you really want and need in terms of physical size, power, etc. before you actually commit real money to something.)

Just go to YouTube and enter "DIY wood lathe" into the search box, and then spend the rest of the day watching videos. (Should probably make some popcorn before you even do the search! hahaha)

Good luck! It'll be fun. ;-)

JeffA2 (author)JeffA22015-11-24

Feeling like a bit of a jackass here... Right after a wrote that, I discovered quite a few instructables on doing that exact thing. It was disrespectful of me to not check the current site before suggesting that you look at a different one... My bad...

Grizzly tools

Verga (author)charleyrocknroll2015-11-22

I just checked on Craigslist. They have lathes from $25 - over $1000. Penn State Industries also sells lathes, obviously they are more expensive, but it is a new machine. They also sell fishing lure kits as well. Popular Woodworking had an article on making your own lures. Here is the link to it;

Here is another site I found:

I would also suggest Youtube I saw about 10 items just by typing in "turning fishing lures".

Hope this helps.


I have had success getting lathes on Craigslist. I live in Austin, Texas and Craigslist here works better than any city I have ever seen. I got my first one from a guy for free, then sold it for $100 later on after paying $100 for the one I have now. So, therefore I am out of pocket $0. Happy turning. Oh, by the way, the handle on here is a great first time project. If you have trees in your yard just go out and cut a limb to the appropriate size (length and girth) and put it in the lathe and begin cutting. You can turn with almost any hard steel, but of course you get what you pay for. The tips shown here are the best I have found and they do sell for a lot less. Clearblue2000 on yahoo is my email if you want/need advice.

Phil_S (author)Verga2015-11-22

Just a thought - Bacho do a really nice small scale scraper that takes a variety of carbide blades, typically, round, pear and triangular. I use them a lot for fine or difficult to get to corners - highly useful.

dgood3 made it! (author)2016-01-29

awesome tutorial, just finished my handel, keystock, end cap (feruel) just waiting on the carbide bit. $130.00 tool to purchase, for under $20 diy. i will end up making 5 in all thanks for the project. one standing up is waiting on carbide bit, orer is turned and will finish tomorrow

Verga made it! (author)2015-12-04

Here are the three I made. I did not follow the ible to the letter as you can see. Here are the changes I made and then some observations. On the straight one I drilled down about 5" on the bent one about 4" and the hooked/ curved one about 3". I slightly varied the shape of each handle so I could see which felt best in my hand for future use. Rather than epoxy and hot glue I used "Liquid nails" construction adhesive. I did this because Lowes was out of the large epoxy I usually buy and I was too cheap to purchase 5 of the squeeze ones. By squirting the "Liquid nails" down into the shaft hole and tapping the handle on my bench top I was able to seat the key stock easily. I used the different shapes on the key stock so that I could use these for internal turning on bowls, vases etc...

I also did not grind down the surface to seat the bits, this is because of the different styles of bits and I want to be able to interchange them. To get the bent shape I just put it in a vise and gave it a couple of hits with a large hammer. I tried the same with the hooked/ curved one but gave up after about 10 minutes. I had a former student of mine that is into blacksmithing bend it for me. I re-tapped the threaded hole just to be on the safe side.

I tested the square and round cutters out on the Christmas Ornaments I am making out of Poplar. There is no doubt that these cut fast very fast, much faster than the HSS lathe tools I have. There is a definite difference in finish. The HSS "shears" the wood fibers while the carbide seems to "tear" them. I have much less sanding to do with the HSS, but the carbide does cut faster. I might be able to get a smoother finish with some practice.

Thank you for the great ible, it gave me a great jump off point for some tools I have been wanting to make for a while

mhein681 (author)2015-11-22

Great article! how long did you cut the 3/8 key stock down ???

khturnings (author)2015-11-22

Cool tool I use mine all the time - I got mine from UK-Wood-Craft-And-Carbide-Chisels which are very well made and reasonable.
Beware when new they bite into the wood!

Phil_S (author)2015-11-22

I like the idea of the plumbing ferrule - these are known as stop ends in the UK, or blanking caps - 1" would translate to either 22-mm or 28-mm, as Imperial hardly ever used now, for copper plumbing at least. Need to use end feed types for a plain finish, or solder ring for a slightly more decorative finish - learn something new every day.

Fezder (author)2015-11-22

I don't have lathe (yet....) and this looks very useful tool, and even DIY-version! nice one! Where to get that blade-part? i might have missed it....

bricabracwizard (author)2015-11-16

I must admit I was fascinated by the blade. How is it used?

pcgirl (author)bricabracwizard2015-11-16

It's a square scraper. :) I want one pretty badly. LOL

JABWood (author)2015-11-15

I would add two steel pins through the handle and key-stock, this would greatly strengthen the tool. Turning wood, particularly natural edged or starting with oblong stock, can be quite abusive on tools. The epoxy might hold just fine but for the little effort it would take to beef it up, why not?

АлександрГ3 (author)2015-11-13

May I ask - what is the use of this tool?

to make the handle for the tool xD

JABWood (author)ThomasK192015-11-15

To make the handle for your "next" lathe


JABWood (author)2015-11-15

What if you don't have a wood turning tool? Just kidding

Raitis (author)2015-11-13

Where do you order the carbide tips?

djpolymath (author)Raitis2015-11-14

Ci1 Easy Rougher Replacement R2 Radius Cutter on Amazon

RockyP4 (author)Raitis2015-11-14

Try woodworking stores near you. There are several places on the internet as well.I searched "woodturning carbide insert"

lcdc59 (author)2015-11-13

Very crafty idea!!

deephidden (author)2015-11-13

You could also use a resin to fill in the end cap.

ClenseYourPallet (author)2015-11-12

I really like this design. Great idea and thanks for the ible

donttrustthepig (author)2015-11-11

Really good idea using a carbide insert, you could just swap out inserts and it's a completely different tool. Nice job

csmith66 (author)2015-11-11


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