Technique for trimming a cue tip flush with the ferrule

troyroy78

I can average 2 ball's :)
Silver Member
Hi there,

I am looking for some advice on any techniques on how you can trim a tip flush with the ferrule on a lathe using the cutter tool rather than using the razor blade method?

This is for leather tops and also phenolic break tips too.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


Roy.
 

Sheldon

dontneednostinkintitle
Silver Member
Razor blade is really the best way, (at least for leather) but if you can't do that you probably better at least have a dial indicator and get your ferrule centered really well. Use a very sharp cutter, and put some pressure on the tip with a cupped live center while you trim the tip.
 

skins

Likes to draw
Silver Member
Maybe you can try a Japanese flat side blade... One side is angle ground and sharpend and the other is flat. With a thin paper backing you can sit the flat side of the blade on the ferrule and trim outward.
 

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Kim Bye

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
HSS parting tool works fine as long as it's super sharp. If you want to trim the tip flush with the ferrule using that method, you better have the shaft spinning really true.
For break tips, I use carbide inserts with a positive rake designed for finishing aluminum and plastics.
 

conetip

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Just a note, what people are calling a razor blade, is not a shaving razor blade, but a utility type blade used in a Stanley knife. Some do use the snap off blades as well. Some hold the blade in their finger's, while others use the blade handle or holder. I use collets and trim using a turning tool or a pcd router tool and a special horizontal Vee block to guide the ferrule. No matter what method you choose, practice is always your friend. There is plenty of youtube video's of the differing methods used. As long as you don't damage the ferrule or ruin the tip, or harm yourself, there is no wrong method to tip trimming.
 

surffisher2a

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I second the use of Lennox blades. They are very sharp.

I'll have to try the Lennox blades. I am new to using a lathe and by far the hardest part is trying to trim the tip flush. I been really struggling with it. I have tried Dewalt blades, stanley and Irwinn without any consistency. I just can't get them to want to cut and when I do, they dig in at a downward angle and trim the tip of the tip too far down.
 

CuesRus1973

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Maybe you can try a Japanese flat side blade... One side is angle ground and sharpened and the other is flat. With a thin paper backing you can sit the flat side of the blade on the ferrule and trim outward.

A cue maker in California used to sell these, maybe he still does. He sells other things too, his own tips, leather wraps, stack wrap leather, etc. for a clue without giving up a name (rules). I will use one of these or a utility blade, but my hands aren't real steady so I use a 1/2 shank cutting tool positioned strategically in my quick change tool post to rest it on. Helps me keep from gouging.

The above mentioned blade is nice though because it is only angles on one side. Helps for making things flush, matching up to the ferrule.
 

HoustonInt

Big John's Cue Repair
Silver Member
Maybe you can try a Japanese flat side blade... One side is angle ground and sharpend and the other is flat. With a thin paper backing you can sit the flat side of the blade on the ferrule and trim outward.


This looks interesting. Anyone know where to get one?


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

skins

Likes to draw
Silver Member
The single sided blade is a Japanese Kiridashi knife. They work well but you will have to sharpen them periodically. If you are not willing or able to sharpen them, get the Lennox utility blades.

https://www.amazon.com/Right-Carving-Japanese-Kiridashi-Knife/dp/B00KDHYKS8/ref=sr_1_5?crid=USU2O56PGAIZ&dchild=1&keywords=kiridashi+knife&qid=1600410363&sprefix=kirida%2Caps%2C207&sr=8-5

Yes they are "craft" knives... The ones without a plastic or wood handle, solid metal shank like the pic I posted in my first post, are the best from my usage.
 

HoustonInt

Big John's Cue Repair
Silver Member

tsp&b

Well-known member
Silver Member
Back to the original question

Some techniques for machining a ferrule or trimming the tip.

Position the workpiece as close to the face of the chuck as safely possible. The closer to the face of the chuck jaws the less the effective runout.

You can use small strips of paper of various thicknesses to shim one side of the shaft in the jaws to center it and check your runout with a dial indicator.

You can also trim the tip or ferrule as close as possible with the stationary cutter in the tool post, being very careful not to come into contact and damage the ferrule or the shaft itself, then loosen the chuck and rotate the shaft and collet 180 degrees and trim it again. You can rotate just the shaft and not the collet and see if that changes anything.

I hope that this information is helpful.
 

Palmetto cue

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Hi there,

I am looking for some advice on any techniques on how you can trim a tip flush with the ferrule on a lathe using the cutter tool rather than using the razor blade method?

This is for leather tops and also phenolic break tips too.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


Roy.

I saw your original question and I see some great posts that I think answer your question. But in case you have more questions on using a blade, or perhaps this is some info you didn't know...

I remember when I first saw Joe and Steve at a tournament use a boxcutter blade many years ago. (I also saw Leonard using nothing but what looked to be a sharpened carpet knife, do everything from facing the ferrule to trimming the tip!) I was surprised how easily, and how flush they cut tips to the ferrule. I started doing cue repairs in 98, and was taught to use a lathe tool. You always had to worry about getting the shaft centered perfect, and that was not easy to do on some shafts. So when I first saw the blade method I couldn't wait to get back home and try it. They held the blade in both hands and cut it from the top with the lathe in reverse I believe. I didn't like holding the blade in my hands and my lathe was sitting lower and I did my work from a sitting position so holding it up top wasn't comfortable to me. I tried a couple different ways, because I believed they were using a better method than my old way. I finally left the blade in the boxcutter holder/handle (safer to me), and started cutting from the side while sitting down. I run the lathe in forward like normal, and I put my index finger on the side of the blade (but not mandatory) when beginning to trim. Cuts down on the chatter. There are videos on Youtube. Using the carbide edged boxcutter blade ( I like Lennox the best) is superior in my opinion because they are so sharp they don't produce as much heat when cutting. You still need to take your time when cutting. Take a little at a time and don't try to hog it. Especially with layered tips. Those layers are being held on with glue. The big enemy to most glue is heat, so the less heat you produce when trimming the better. Practice on a junk shaft as you do have to develop a feel for it. If you let the blade dig in too early it can cut into the ferrule. I've learned a lot from other cue repair guys (Joe and Steve), and the cue makers on this site! They were always willing to school me on things and still do lol! Hope this has helped you!
 
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dzcues

newbie
Silver Member
Hi Bob,
Why do you change to the hss parting tool for the final trim, instead of a sharp turning insert?
Neil

Because a freshly sharpened hss tool bit will cut the soft leather better than a carbide turning insert. Try it.
 
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