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Cheap Carbide Lathe Tools

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Blue Heeler16/06/2019 08:07:52
189 forum posts

Just out of total interest, does anyone use these cheap carbide lathe tools?



Edited By Blue Heeler on 16/06/2019 08:18:03

jimmy b16/06/2019 09:15:17
649 forum posts
38 photos

I've had some, in my opinion, good quality HSS is a better bet.


roy entwistle16/06/2019 09:17:20
1188 forum posts

Don't buy tools in sets. You will not use three quarters of them apart from possibly spanners


SillyOldDuffer16/06/2019 10:05:28
5913 forum posts
1280 photos
Posted by roy entwistle on 16/06/2019 09:17:20:

Don't buy tools in sets. You will not use three quarters of them apart from possibly spanners


Unless it's cheaper to buy a set!

Much depends what you're doing of course, some need only a limited range of tools in their workshops, others make good use of everything.

For a beginner buying a set of HSS tools is a good way of learning what they're for and which you really need. Or not! I bought sets to get started and don't regret it. Now I know more, I often target replacements as Roy suggests.

Although I'm a metric workshop, I've found a set of common Imperial Drills to be invaluable even though I don't use them much. It's because I'm particularly annoyed by coming to a stop because I don't happen to have the right tool handy.


Hollowpoint16/06/2019 11:43:55
331 forum posts
31 photos

I never got on with the brazed carbide tools. Honestly I think they are rubbish. I get much better results with both HSS and indexable carbide.

old mart16/06/2019 11:45:23
1824 forum posts
148 photos

I bought a set like that years ago, they were rubbish, I threw away some and gave away the rest.

This type of set costs more but at least has the codes on the sides so you can buy more inserts.   

There are a lot of tools with inserts which look alright to the novice, but make the more experienced of us want to puke.

Ebay UK 263527683427 (I tried twice to cut and paste the listing without success)


Edited By old mart on 16/06/2019 11:45:56

Edited By old mart on 16/06/2019 11:46:23

Edited By old mart on 16/06/2019 11:50:30

Hollowpoint16/06/2019 11:59:40
331 forum posts
31 photos

I'd go for something like these in the same price bracket. The quality isn't half bad. For the price they are hard to beat.

Ebay 162577233747

Hopper16/06/2019 13:28:23
4645 forum posts
101 photos

$32 for 20 tool bits. $1.60 each. Including shipping. Yeah they should be good.

old mart16/06/2019 13:33:44
1824 forum posts
148 photos

If an ebay listing similar to Hollowpoints' is available in OZ, it would be a good choice.

Cornish Jack17/06/2019 12:19:37
1135 forum posts
163 photos

Just received the following **LINK**

11 days for delivery and, at the price, appears to be extraordinarily good value. Had a quick look and it all looks good - the bearings spin sweetly, the chuck is a little jewel and the drive pulley looks to be standard. Don't know whether the "only one left" is 'click-bait' but seems a reasonable bet, price-wise.



SillyOldDuffer17/06/2019 12:33:21
5913 forum posts
1280 photos
Posted by Hollowpoint on 16/06/2019 11:43:55:

I never got on with the brazed carbide tools. Honestly I think they are rubbish. I get much better results with both HSS and indexable carbide.

To my surprise I learned on this forum that brazed carbide tools are often sold unsharpened! Nothing wrong with them apart from the need to touch them up with a suitable grinding wheel which most of us don't have. Not working out of the box explains my bad experience with them.

Although brazed carbide tools have their uses, they have none of the advantages of indexed tips and are harder to sharpen than HSS. Beginners avoid!


JasonB17/06/2019 12:38:07
18293 forum posts
2024 photos
1 articles
Posted by SillyOldDuffer on 17/06/2019 12:33:21:

Although brazed carbide tools have their uses, they have none of the advantages of indexed tips and are harder to sharpen than HSS. Beginners avoid!

You can run them as fast as insert tips

You can cut hard or chilled metals with them same as carbide tips

They are more durable than carbide tips as the edge is not delicate.

old mart17/06/2019 13:05:06
1824 forum posts
148 photos

Proper carbide inserts have sophisticated tip geometry which hss and brazed carbide cannot match. Only first generation inserts such as TPUN lack the advantages of modern types.

Ian S C17/06/2019 15:36:36
7468 forum posts
230 photos

For a handy source of tips for the like of small boring bars get hold of a worn out carbide tipped circular saw(one of those round things with teeth for cutting brown stuff), remove the remaining carbide teeth, these can then be brazed into a home made tool holder. Watch out the tips are ground alternately left and right. Sorry it does not show up too well.

Ian S C

dsc01182 (800x600).jpg

Edited By Ian S C on 17/06/2019 15:37:49

Blue Heeler17/06/2019 23:01:16
189 forum posts

Interesting that no one uses them (neither do I) because there are so many ads for them on every machinery/tool suppliers pages/website.

Paul Kemp17/06/2019 23:35:11
504 forum posts
18 photos

Well I use em, I don't have any issues. Have a set of 16mm that I use on the big lathes I have access too (Edgewick, Holbrook and Harrison), some 8mm ones I use on the hobbymat at home and occasionally on the myford. Out of the 16mm set I don't think there is any I haven't used although perhaps not for their intended purpose! Ie the parting tool has been ground into a long reach threading tool and a couple of the others 'butchered' to strange shapes to suit difficult access areas on some iron castings. That said I also use HSS and indexable tips on all the machines. I have a 1" square long boring bar (home made) that uses round HSS bits. Tend to use whatever will work the best for whatever job is being done or whatever is the most cost effective way of getting decent cuts. Can't really understand why people get hung up on one particular tooling type, they all have advantages and disadvantages, why limit yourself? I also save the blunt or chipped indexable tips and if I need something obscure braze em on to a bit of bar and free hand grind them, handy for custom bars for the boring heads. Sometimes I will rough out with a tipped tool and then finish with HSS. Only indexable tips I have never used I think are screw cutting tips, mostly I grind them from HSS although I do have and have used some brazed tip ones. I don't need to cut any micron perfect threads so my methods suit what I need to do.


JasonB18/06/2019 07:05:03
18293 forum posts
2024 photos
1 articles

I use them too, particularly the cranked ones with the radius end, ideal when you want a radius fillet in the corner of something. I used to use them a lot more at one time, most of the turning on that Minnie in my avitar was done with a R/H, L/H, two cranked radius and a parting one. Though probably not as cheap as the ones shown I used to buy individuals from M.E.S.A.S who are no more.

Henry Brown18/06/2019 07:27:09
232 forum posts
72 photos

Back in the day, 70's, there was little choice other than brazed carbide for heavy machining. Part of being an apprentice was learning how to shape them including the top face. I still have the skill, bit like riding the proverbial bike, and use them but the hobby ones are so much smaller than we used on big lathes and borers so they are fiddly to grind. There's a place for them, tips and HSS it just knowing where and when!

Howard Lewis18/06/2019 17:51:03
3370 forum posts
2 photos

Afraid that my experiences with brazed tip tools have not been good, especially ones for screwcutting.

Either HSS, or replaceable carbide tips, for me!


Jon Lawes18/06/2019 19:13:55
376 forum posts

I use both depending on what I've doing, especially useful for cutting through the skin of cast iron.

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