Turning dodecahedrons inside the sphere #1: First ball

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Blog entry by Yuri posted 02-08-2012 02:26 AM 4995 reads 3 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Turning dodecahedrons inside the sphere series Part 2: Third Chuck »

I apologize for my English. It’s my third language and I have a difficulties finding the right terminology and words for specific subjects like names in math, tool parts, etc. This really slows me down when describing specific tasks.

I’m going back to turning dodecahedrons inside the sphere first. See here. In two inch diameter ball I was able to make up to four layers (including sphere) in small woodturning lathe made by Taig. Its all about good plan and good measurement. I find, making wood balls is best described here. So, i’m skipping this part.

Then carefully and as much precision as possible mark 12 centers on the surface of the sphere. Compass will have to be set at 0.5257 of the diameter of the sphere :) We will never do that kind of accuracy taking in fact that by pinning the wood the distance between compass spikes will make bigger radius. I had to go back and adjust the radius until I was close to 0.5 mm tolerance.

For the first ball I used simple jig to hold the ball. Have to say, I tried to do it on the press drill but I was not happy with the result. Turning ball on the lathe gives you more flexibility with tools, scrapers, sending if needed…

12 holes already made to a depth of the small dodecahedron face. Probably, the end result would be better with small holes drilled to the center. I will explain further down.

I used straight router bits to make the holes. Tape is to mark first hole depth then I used collar placed on the other side of the tailstock to make all 12 holes with the same depth.

In red circle the vertex was still supposed to be attached to a middle dodecahedron. Remember, all holes should have the same depth in order to keep right geometry.

To hold peaces together I had to make a few pegs. Small red line shows why it would be better to drill first small holes to the centre of the ball. Small an big straight bit will never stop at the same depth!

Here is how plug/peg goes in place mainly to hold the small dodecahedron in place when we get to last faces.

Actually, this is the plan for three dodecahedrons inside the sphere I used as a present ( I don’t have a pictures )

Thank You,
. Preview of the next blog. New ball chuck and five layer ball

If I missed something here I will try to reveal it in the next blog

-- Live to Learn

8 comments so far

View Paul2274's profile


330 posts in 3625 days

#1 posted 02-08-2012 03:45 AM

OK…. I think this is just the most amazing-ing-er-est thing!!!

Fav for sure.


View stefang's profile


16752 posts in 3846 days

#2 posted 02-08-2012 11:03 AM

Hi Yuri. Good going. Your ball chuck looks great too.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 3548 days

#3 posted 02-08-2012 09:05 PM

Excellent, Yuri. Looking forward to the next instalment.

By the way there is nothing wrong with your English, better than some who have it as a first language.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View cabmaker's profile


1745 posts in 3321 days

#4 posted 02-08-2012 10:05 PM

That is way cool. And dont worry about apolagizing for your english. It is my only language and I dont always get it right.

View jimp's profile


208 posts in 4273 days

#5 posted 02-09-2012 12:45 AM

Thanks for posting this.

-- - Jim, Carroll, OH

View sras's profile


5200 posts in 3641 days

#6 posted 02-09-2012 03:13 AM

This is VERY interesting. Your English is very good as well. Thank you for sharing.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View David Grimes's profile

David Grimes

2078 posts in 3152 days

#7 posted 02-09-2012 04:58 AM

Hey, that’s neat: Hey, that’s neat:

-- If you're going to stir the pot, think BIG spoon or SMALL boat paddle. David Grimes, Georgia

View Borgmc1's profile


157 posts in 2829 days

#8 posted 05-02-2012 08:27 PM

Wow That is Very Cool. Thank you for posting.

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