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Getting a Grip on Four-Jaw Lathe Chucks

When first introduced, four-jaw chucks were viewed by many as a luxury just for professional turners. But they offer so many advantages that anyone from novice level on up would benefit from owning one.

Four-Jaw Lathe Chuck
chuck on end of lathe
Enlarge Image
Teknatool of New Zealand started the
woodturning chuck revolution in 1988.
Shown above is the business
end of its Nova Titan chuck.

Four-Jaw Lathe Chuck

With prices ranging from about $35 up to $280, you're probably asking yourself why you should buy a four-jaw chuck for your lathe. Here are some of the best reasons:
• Chucks provide quick, accurate, and positive centering of bowl blanks and standard turning squares.
• There's no need to glue a waste block to your turning blank or give up bowl-blank thickness to accommodate the screws needed to fasten it to a faceplate.
• When using a chuck to turn a bowl from green stock, you can rough it out, remove it from the lathe, and then later remount it with greater ease and convenience than with faceplate mounting.
• Accessory chuck jaws are available to hold work as small as a 1/4"-diameter tenon on a miniature vessel and as large as the rim of an 18"-diameter platter.
• You can turn a bowl and finish it inside and out with little or no trace of how it was held on the lathe.

Continued on page 2:  How a chuck works


Comments (7)
brcollectibles wrote:

I think that oneway in Canada made the ist of these. I never did much turning till I got the oneway chuck. There is only so much you can do between centers.

1/28/2016 10:25:52 AM Report Abuse
nelsondefelixy wrote:

I have just bought a 3" 4-jaw chuck, thanks for this article a guide for a beginner like me, by the way i let a machinest make an adapter to fit on the spindle of my lathe, Nelson Defelix-Iloilo City, Philippines,12-3-15, 8:30pm

12/3/2015 06:31:02 AM Report Abuse
rwm50 wrote:

myplace i have the same unit, you need a 1" + 10 tpi thread type chuck

4/3/2013 05:31:05 PM Report Abuse
Stackman wrote:

I have a 4 Jaw chuck ordered at Busy Bee Tools for my Craftsman lathe. 3/4 X 16 TPI tread pattern.

11/27/2011 10:09:28 AM Report Abuse
mcplace wrote:

I need a 4jaw chuck for a Sears Craftsman wood lathe model# 351.217150 where can I find one. Sears says this model is obsolete any brand might as lon as the thread pattern match.Can some one help

4/23/2011 12:50:03 PM Report Abuse
helmich1 wrote:

Very informative! Metalworking 4 jaw chucks work differently, but that is another ballgame.

3/24/2011 10:38:22 AM Report Abuse

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