The ornamental or complex lathe, with its infinite capability for shaping and decorating, was perfected by the Holtzapffel family of London between 1780 and 1914. This amazing machine makes use of a broad range of attached tools, engineering works of art in themselves, to turn hardwood — and, at the time, ivory — into an astonishing variety of intricate patterns.
Besides designing the lathe, Charles Holtzapffel and his son, John Jacob — successful engineers, businessmen, and manufacturers — also wrote the five-volume bible of this particular art: Turning and Mechanical Manipulation on the Lathe. This book reprints the fifth volume of this enormous work, making this definitive and extremely rare book available to modern devotees of this most demanding and satisfying craft.
Featuring over 600 line drawings and detailed instructions, the twelve chapters of the text are organized according to the various cutting frames and chucks, describing and illustrating the enormous powers of each. Combinations of chucks for compound eccentric turning, spiral turning, and reciprocated work are also described in detail.
The approach throughout is thoroughly practical and nothing is omitted that may be of use to the beginner or advanced ornamental turner.
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