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Hello everyone, my name is Bob but some of you may know me as the Wheelchair Woodworker from an old website I had before health issues forced me to shut it down. I was in a very serious motorcycle accident that resulted in 16 broken bones (including my back), 6 weeks on life support and more hospital stays then I can count. As a result of the accident I had to have my left leg amputated below the knee and have had four shoulder replacements on my left shoulder leaving me with limited movement. Obviously, I should not be here today typing this post but the Good Lord Blessed me with a second chance at life and I well not let Him down.

Some days it seems I spend more time trying to adapt tools and techiques so I can safely accomplish each task, which brings me to the reason for this post. Like all of you I have a passion for making walking canes but since my motorcycle accident I have to really think things out before I do them. At this point my biggest obstical to making the quality cane I am accustomed to making, I need to find a new way to turn my shafts in the lathe. I can no longer use hand held lathe tools because I cannot safely control them with one good arm plus it is difficult for me to safely stand and be steady while turning.

So I've decided to try and find a way to attach a Bosch Colt router to my lathe to turn my tapered shafts. I have used a wooden guide and slid the router along the top but I want a more permanent solution. Does anyone know of an after market attachment(s) that would make this possible? I have considered a duplicator but according to my wife, medical bills have a priority over more woodworking tools. Man that one hurt . . . bills over tools . . . ouch! Anyway, an attachment is opition 1. The other opition of course is to build something with after market parts but I just can't seem to come up with a design that works. There was a day when I would have been more then welling to undertake such a challenge but after hitting the ground at 70+ mph I have learned that there comes a time you have to put the pride to the side and ask for help.

So if anyone has any ideas, suggestions or feedback of any kind please respond. Oh, I almost forgot, I have Jet 1014VSI lathe with a bed extender on it. I would like to use my Bosch Colt route but that is not written in stone. Thank you in advance for your help and I look forward to sharing some of my experience on this forum in the future.
 

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I commend you, Bob, for your grit and determination - and honor you for recognizing HIS help. Would you consider not using the lathe at all - just going with limbs and branches, working the bark away using chisels, sand paper, etc.

I do not have a lathe and thus far have created more than 70 hand-made canes - using oak, maple, ash, hickory, maple, etc. branches. Many of them I have captured from alongside the roads, waiting for the chopper.

-neb
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I commend you, Bob, for your grit and determination - and honor you for recognizing HIS help. Would you consider not using the lathe at all - just going with limbs and branches, working the bark away using chisels, sand paper, etc.

I do not have a lathe and thus far have created more than 70 hand-made canes - using oak, maple, ash, hickory, maple, etc. branches. Many of them I have captured from alongside the roads, waiting for the chopper.

-neb
Good Morning Neb, Thank you for your response and positive feedback. Believe me when I say there are days where hearing a smiple word of encouragement can make or break your day.

I have been using a spokewheel draw knief to get the rough shap of my canes and then hand shaping and sanding them to the final finish but that to was taking a toll on my arm and shoulder. I failed to mention that my canes are all one piece and are 1-1/2 inch at there thickest point and 7/8" at the bottom. I designed my canes for individuals who are over weight for what ever reason. I weighed 200 lb at the time of my accident but now weigh 335 lb and I was breaking the handles off of the typical size canes so I got permission from a cane maker out east to modify his design to fill this void and it does that job very well. They look sturdy but more important they are extremely sturdy and causes the person to walk more upright releiving stress to the wrist and lower back. So consequently your method, although I enjoy making some canes the same way you do, well not work for this particular cane.

I truly do appreciate your feedback.
 

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Hi!

You are a lucky man. That's one of the worst accidents I've heard of, and those I know personally were all w. fellows younger than 40. Knew 2 guys who had motorcycle accidents, and both spent weeks in the hospital recovering.

Unfortunately, I know little about lathes, although did use routers quite a bit. I usually cut templates out of the composite board used for countertops. That held up better than any wood or plywood. Perhaps substituting a different material for wood for the router guide would do better.

I had to look up lathe duplicators, and have to say I can't imagine cobbing something together that would match their function.

I do all manual work at this point. I took a fall down some icy concrete steps last winter. I avoided smashing my face by getting my forearms out in front of me, but the shock was enough that now my shoulders do start aching after an hour or two of stick shaping. My principle remedy is to keep my woodcraft blade as sharp as possible for rough forming, and then follow with coarse rasps and lots of scraping. Recently I came across some carbide rasps by a company called dura-grit. They are very durable and aggressive, and fairly inexpensive. Then I follow up w. cheap utility blades for smoothing. Not very fast, or as accurate as I suppose you prefer, but not much physical strain.

Hope you come up w. a solution that suits you.
 

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Hi Bob,

Welcome to the forum. Sorry to hear of your accident and resulting disabilities. I recently sold my motorcycles because of increasing disabilities affecting my strength and balance, resulting from an accident and I can completely relate to your remark about God's grace and mercy. No matter how hard the day is, He is always good.

I can envision a jig made of two parallel heavy duty drawer slides that would have a bracket on the sliding part to attach your router to, router mounted horizontally in line with the lathe centers, and would be fixed to the tool rest mount on the lathe. Two parallel long, heavy duty slides for strength and rigidity with a vertical plate that the router base is fixed to and maybe an L aluminum angle on the back of the jig to resist horizontal deflection. Make any sense - can you see it?

Regards,
Gordon
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Bob,

Welcome to the forum. Sorry to hear of your accident and resulting disabilities. I recently sold my motorcycles because of increasing disabilities affecting my strength and balance, resulting from an accident and I can completely relate to your remark about God's grace and mercy. No matter how hard the day is, He is always good.

I can envision a jig made of two parallel heavy duty drawer slides that would have a bracket on the sliding part to attach your router to, router mounted horizontally in line with the lathe centers, and would be fixed to the tool rest mount on the lathe. Two parallel long, heavy duty slides for strength and rigidity with a vertical plate that the router base is fixed to and maybe an L aluminum angle on the back of the jig to resist horizontal deflection. Make any sense - can you see it?

Regards,
Gordon
I think you might be onto something Gordon. I'll let you know how it works out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hi!

You are a lucky man. That's one of the worst accidents I've heard of, and those I know personally were all w. fellows younger than 40. Knew 2 guys who had motorcycle accidents, and both spent weeks in the hospital recovering.

Unfortunately, I know little about lathes, although did use routers quite a bit. I usually cut templates out of the composite board used for countertops. That held up better than any wood or plywood. Perhaps substituting a different material for wood for the router guide would do better.

I had to look up lathe duplicators, and have to say I can't imagine cobbing something together that would match their function.

I do all manual work at this point. I took a fall down some icy concrete steps last winter. I avoided smashing my face by getting my forearms out in front of me, but the shock was enough that now my shoulders do start aching after an hour or two of stick shaping. My principle remedy is to keep my woodcraft blade as sharp as possible for rough forming, and then follow with coarse rasps and lots of scraping. Recently I came across some carbide rasps by a company called dura-grit. They are very durable and aggressive, and fairly inexpensive. Then I follow up w. cheap utility blades for smoothing. Not very fast, or as accurate as I suppose you prefer, but not much physical strain.

Hope you come up w. a solution that suits you.
I'm going to check into the carbid rasps. sounds promising. Thanks.
 

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Hi Bob. Welcome aboard the forum . This may be something you coul adapted to meet your needs. There are a number of Youtubes on router lathes.
 

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What you're doing is very commendable. There really isn't much out there that's designed for heavier than average people, let alone attractive options like your canes.

The best idea I have would be to build a guide rail with a carriage and feed screw to mount the router on your lathe sort of like what's found on metal lathes but simpler.

The carriage and rail could be wood and a long piece of all thread could be the screw. You could even use angle iron or pipe for the rail. There are a lot of options. An acme threaded rod would move the carriage faster but is considerably more expensive than all thread.

If you hinge one end and have some room to adjust the distance from the lathe bed on the other end you can build in your taper without needing a separate taper jig for your lathe.

That would take care of the bottom part. How do you shape the handle of your canes?

Rodney
 

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You could try a saw rasp there double sided one coarse and the other fine it removes material quickly and the fine side reduce the amount of sanding for finishing. They don't clog up like the normal rasps I wouldn't be without one now
 
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