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Thread: Question about large jaws on a 5" chuck

  1. #1
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    Question about large jaws on a 5" chuck

    I have a 5" HTC125 chuck, which came with standard dovetail jaws. When I bought it, I figured I would buy the large dovetail jaws for it, later, when needed. At the time, I wasn't turning anything larger than about 13", and the standard jaws were adequate for that.

    Well, now I need them, but I can't find them anywhere. The thewoodturningstore.com site has a listing for them, but you can only put them on a wish list, not in a purchasing cart. I called, they said they don't have them and have no information about future availability. Amazon had a listing, showing "currently unavailable," with no other information. Now that listing is gone completely.

    Both sites offer large jaws, but only in "serrated" form, not dovetail. My impression is that dovetail jaws hold better than serrated jaws, of the same size, so I would prefer the dovetail type. But I can't find them.

    At the moment, my immediate need for the large jaws is to attach a couple of really large bowl blanks that a friend cored for me, which have large dovetail tenons on them. The blanks are about 18" diameter, 9" tall, with thick walls, and quite heavy. They'll be lighter, of course, after they dry some, but still, they're BIG!

    So here are my questions:

    1. Does anybody know of a place that is selling a set of large dovetail jaws for the HTC125 chuck?

    2. I suppose I could take the large blanks when they are ready to be finish-turned, put them on a really big jam chuck, convert the dovetail to a straight tenon, and then buy and use the large serrated jaws to hold them. Do you think that would work okay? Or, would it be better to use a 6" face plate, since there's quite a bit of extra wood on the bottom, to turn away the screw holes later? Any other suggestions?

    Robert
    Last edited by Steve Schlumpf; 02-10-2018 at 11:37 PM. Reason: Ads (want-to-buy & sales) only allowed in Classifieds Forum

  2. #2
    After they dry they'll probably have warped so much you'd have to jam chuck and true up the tenons before you could mount them, anyway.

    I don't really like serrated jaws but they'll probably work fine if it comes down to it.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    If those cores are recently cut wet wood, you have plenty of time to make a decision. If your thickness is 1.75" to 2" you have a good 1 1/2 year wait to dry. I'd think the jaws you want will be in stock before then.
    Member Turners Anonymous Pittsburgh, PA

  4. #4
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    Glue block them--no sweat.

  5. #5
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    I have the large serrated jaws for my HTC125- it does a great job of holding. I would not be afraid to use them for coring, which is the most stressful work a lathe does, IMO, but YMMV. I think the HTC chuck design is strong, and would have no pause.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Marshall View Post
    Both sites offer large jaws, but only in "serrated" form, not dovetail. My impression is that dovetail jaws hold better than serrated jaws, of the same size, so I would prefer the dovetail type. But I can't find them.

    At the moment, my immediate need for the large jaws is to attach a couple of really large bowl blanks that a friend cored for me, which have large dovetail tenons on them.

    Robert
    Can you borrow your friends chuck with big jaws?

    I would stay with dovetail jaws instead of a straight tenon or serrated jaws, even if that means buying a Vicmarc chuck and Vicmarc Mega dovetail jaws. Others will undoubtedly argue with this, but I was told by a professional turner that serrated jaws are more for end grain (spindle) work. When used on side grain, the serrations can dig into the side grain more than the end grain, which can affect how "equal" it holds. As a result the piece can move and loosen, requiring that you continually check and re-tighten the chuck. Dovetail jaws will hold equally no matter the grain direction. Straight tenons just don't make sense to me, especially for holding power.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Ambridge, PA
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    Robert,

    You haven't said what diameter the tenon actually is but there is some overlap between the HTC large and super large jaw sets. Looks like the biggest style is in stock if you need something soon and don't want to wait. If the tenon is better than 5 1/4", they would work. Just for kicks for everyone else, here's pics of the 3 different sizes they offer. The super large is truly a big honking set of jaws.

    dt1.jpgdt2.jpgdt3.jpg
    Member Turners Anonymous Pittsburgh, PA

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