Ball cutter

Have you ever had the need to cut a perfect ball? Well I sure have and my free hand cutting of a ball has never been very good. I have seen a few ball jigs for sale but they really never turned my crank. So I had a run at making one that fits my lathe. The cutter has to be at the correct height and sharp enough not to tear the wood. I built this unit around the Easy Wood Tools profile cutter as seen here. This example is soft Silver Birch that is spalted and as you can see there is very little torn end grain. If your work piece is held by a chuck, the tail stock will be pushed back and the ball can be cut all the way around on the Tail Stock end.

As you can see, I have a unit that attaches to the lathe bed, it has two layers that allows the bottom one to be moved along the bed and tightened where ever you like. The top layer then pivots a full 360° if you need it. The depth of cut is adjustable by the wooden knob on the left and the size of ball can be any thing from less than an inch to a full 10". So Croquet and Botchy balls are possible. I had to make a cross slide assembly in order to adjust the cut depth easily. 

The bed attaching hardware can be tightened with an Allen key by pulling the plugs out of two holes on the top plate. The plugs keep the wood chips from plugging the Allen key sockets.

Details on how to make this unit are available below, or send me an e-mail.

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