Wood Turning Chisel Handles and Engineers File Handles

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Project by Cliff posted 11-22-2013 06:49 AM 3713 views 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

At long last I have completed a project. Wood Turning Chisel Handles and some Engineers File Handles. The Timber I have used is very old, over sixty years. It is Australian hardwood but I really don’t know exactly what sort of tree it came from. To make the handles I used some old and very basic quality turning chisels that my Brother purchased many years ago and never used. He is more the Metal Man, so the engineers file handles are for him.
You will notice a few nail holes in the wood as this is timber that had a previous life and is now a born again usable tool that hopefully will create something as I progress along the Lumber Trail and attempt more projects.
I did not want to hide the nail holes as it is important to me to be totally honest in my presentation of projects. There are also lots and lots of imperfections in my work, hopefully in time my ability will improve but in the mean time It is great being a Lumber Jock and each day I enjoy looking at the LJ Site and going WOW!!! at the terrific talent and amazing projects that are presented by all the Guys & Gals.

Kind regards,


-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

15 comments so far

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2628 posts in 3955 days

#1 posted 11-22-2013 07:34 AM

A WOW for you Cliff, nice work on the handles, you have given the old wood a new lase of life. Brother should be happy with his lot. Well done mate.

-- Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View aussiedave's profile


3114 posts in 2096 days

#2 posted 11-22-2013 10:54 AM

Very nicely turned handle Cliff….you did an excellent job

-- Dave.......If at first you don’t succeed redefine success....

View Handtooler's profile


1628 posts in 2404 days

#3 posted 11-22-2013 11:37 AM

Buddy, you’ve done it again. Super Job, Cliff. You’ve really don the handles nicely; I’m sure you will enjoy using them as you progress in your somewhat new adventure in woodworking. And such a nice jesture for your engineering friend. Passing it forward!

-- Russell Pitner Hixson, TN 37343 [email protected]

View Cliff 's profile


1396 posts in 1995 days

#4 posted 11-22-2013 11:39 AM

Thanks Bob, Thanks Dave, much appreciated…....I feel encouraged to use my new chisels on another project soon.
Yes to use old bits and pieces of timber is very interesting, it is quite intriguing how a dirty old piece of wood responds to some cutting and sanding. I think I am hooked on this wood work caper.



-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

View Cliff 's profile


1396 posts in 1995 days

#5 posted 11-22-2013 11:45 AM

Thank you Russell, looking forward to seeing your projects too. How is your Stanley Plane going?



-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

View gwolfe1977's profile


228 posts in 2082 days

#6 posted 11-22-2013 01:02 PM

Great job Cliff!!! Glad to see that you’re getting some shop time in. Your reclaimed wood has really nice colors to it. Keep up the great work.

-- Gary,Nebraska

View doubleDD's profile


8137 posts in 2315 days

#7 posted 11-22-2013 01:45 PM

Nice job turning the handles. Looks like you beefed them up a bit for better control. Great job.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 2564 days

#8 posted 11-22-2013 01:58 PM

Very nicely done—not only is your choice of wood great, but your handles are all very attractive. Just curious, what’s the difference between a regular file and an engineers file?

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

22054 posts in 3377 days

#9 posted 11-22-2013 02:12 PM

WOW. Cliff. those look like professional handles- better than you can buy!!!!!!!!!!!
Great character to them. I’m sure you will use them with pride.
You appreciate things more when you make them yourself!!!!!!!!!!!

Great job, Cliff…..............cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Cliff 's profile


1396 posts in 1995 days

#10 posted 11-23-2013 05:18 AM

Hi Gary, Thank you and glad that you like the chisels. Yes reclaimed wood is a great source for Turning and its really great to find a little time for the shop. Thank you very much for your support. Cliff.

Hi Dave ( doubleDD ) Thank you for your compliments. Yes i thought if I beefed them up a bit it might feel better to grip, I am glad you mentioned this factor as it has convinced me to continue making chisels in this fashion. Cliff.

Hello HillbillyShooter, (Is your name John?) Thank you for the nice compliments. I am very happy that you liked the wood and the shape of the handles.

Engineers Files. I spoke to my Brother about it this morning. He said that in the Engineering Trades, certainly in Australia, A File is for use on all Metals and Non Ferrous Metals such as Brass and Copper. Fitters and Turners, Tool Makers would use these Files hence the name Engineering Files. I think in some Countries people use the name File to describe anything that removes a surface, Nail Files, Wood Rasps and even Farriers use a File of some sort on the Horses Hooves.
So to distinguish right away what kind of file is required, “Engineers File” Seems to be the best understood here in Australia. Hope this is some help to you. I am like you, I get curious and like to know these things.

Regards. Cliff.

-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

View Cliff 's profile


1396 posts in 1995 days

#11 posted 11-23-2013 06:17 AM

Hi Jim, After all these compliments I had better put my hat on now as my head will swell too big for my hat soon!!!! I am really glad that you like the handles. I was really flying blind, I had done a Turning Course a couple of years ago and some things we learned were coming back to me. At first I was experimenting with templates, but alas I was getting more confused by the minute. So I thought “Right!, just get the length and basic shape in my head and go from there” But I tell you what, that Spindle Gouge had a mind of its own, I was all over the place.” My Stance and Presentation still needs a lot of work. Just when it seems like things are going well there would be a dig in and the blade shudders and the surface needed smoothing out again.
I recall you asking if I had a tool sharpening jig, what would you suggest? As it certainly would be easier to keep the blades nice and sharp.
I agree about appreciating things we make ourselves. Very satisfying. Can’t wait to start a new project.



-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

View Woodknack's profile


12530 posts in 2651 days

#12 posted 11-24-2013 03:49 AM

Great job on the handles, I really like whatever specie of wood. Are the brass ferrules also recycled or did you buy them?

-- Rick M,

View Cliff 's profile


1396 posts in 1995 days

#13 posted 11-24-2013 08:44 AM

Hi Rick, Thank you for your comments. Much appreciated.

The Timber is Australian Hard Wood, very old but I don’t know what type of wood it is, it is quite an attractive timber and I would think that someone with more experience than me could really bring out the grain and present it very nicely. It appears to be a close grain.

The Brass Ferrules were bought online here in Australia from a Wood Work Supplier, I bought several different sizes, they are very nice and well made but very expensive, so knowing what I know now I will buy lengths of Brass Tubing in different Diameters and cut and file them myself.



-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

View icemanhank's profile


466 posts in 2428 days

#14 posted 11-26-2013 07:20 AM

Nice work Cliff

Cheers David from Sydney

-- "These are my principles. And if you don't like them, I have others." ... Cheers, David from Sydney Australia

View Cliff 's profile


1396 posts in 1995 days

#15 posted 11-26-2013 10:18 AM

Thank you icemanhank, I appreciate your comments. I had a look at your projects, they look great.



-- Cliff Australia : Snoring is good. It blows away all the Sawdust.

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