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How do I mount tools to my lathe?

Here is a frequently asked question… it comes down to matching specs.  If you have the manual for your lathe, it should tell you.  If you don’t, I suggest you try and find one, or you will need to do some measuring.  Then it comes down to matching size for size.

The most common lathe mounts are the Morse Taper socket in the spindle and the threads on the outside of the spindle.  Usually, if you have a #2 Morse Taper (#2MT) the threads will be 1” x 8 threads per inch (TPI) – but not always, so its always best to check so you know for sure before you buy anything.  #1MT lathes are smaller than ideal, but can be made to work, but there are limited tools made in #1MT so keep that in mind if you are buying a lathe.  #1MT lathe sockets usually have a ¾” spindle thread, but there seems to be less standardization as I have seen both 10 TPI and 16 TPI – ¾” threads on #1MT lathe spindles.  So you will want to verify the thread count.  10 TPI accessories are less common than 16 TPI accessories.  And or course there is always the chance of metric threads, odd ball SAE threads and it all depends on the manufacturer – so check it to be sure.

Once you know what you have, you buy what matches it.  You want a thread mount collet chuck, match the threads on the chuck to the threads on your lathe.  If you’re buying a Morse Taper mounted tool, match the MT of your spindle to the MT of the tool.

They do make adapter sleeves and sockets, but they have limited uses in call making because of the lack of a through hole or extended length which eats up lathe bed space you might need.

 

Drilling Holes:

Accurate holes with a drill bit are one of the hardest things to do. There are so many ways a drill bit can “go wrong” and create an oversized hole.  Anything that affects alignment of the drill will affect the diameter and shape of the bore.  As will any outside forces on the drill (like wood grain for example). 

If the drill bit is not in line with the axis of the rotating portion of the process (be it the drill in line with the spindle axis of a drill press or the drill being aligned with the axis of the spindle when drilling in the lathe) you will have additional errors in the size of the hole you are drilling.

There are two areas to focus on when checking alignment of a drill, and it is most easily done with a dial indicator.  Axial alignment of the drill with the rotating axis – which is more easily described with the following example:  If you put a small drill bit in the drill chuck, grab the point of the bit, and bend it – you would see axial misalignment.  The most common causes of axial misalignment are:  low quality drill chuck, poorly mounted drill chuck on the spindle or arbor, chips in the jaws of the chuck, or a bent drill bit.

The other alignment issue is radial alignment.  This is generally more likely to be seen when drilling on a lathe than when using a drill press.  An example of radial misalignment is:  Imagine drilling a hole in a rod, off center – and then placing a drill bit in that off-center hole.  When you rotate the rod, the drill could very well be aligned axially with the rod, but the entire bit has an “orbit” around the true center of the axis.  This is less common in drill presses just because of the design – but it is a very common occurrence when drilling on a lathe due to a mismatch in height of the spindle in relation to the height of the tailstock.

Axial misalignment causes the tip of the bit to “orbit” around the true center line, causing one edge of the drill to cut on the outer face – in turn causing an oversize hole.  Generally, what will happen is the entry point of the drill will be oversized, and as the drill progresses into the hole, it slowly starts to be supported by the material causing less run-out, and the bore starts to get smaller and closer to the desired size, but usually it will still be oversized – but tapered – and this will affect how the mandrel holds the blank.  Radial misalignment will do the same thing, but generally, the size of bore is less tapered and more equally oversized – though some taper will be expected.

The other big contributor to tapered or oversize holes (this primarily applies to drilling on a lathe) is not starting centered.  If an accurate bore is required – it is best to start the hole with a center drill or spotting drill – just enough to give the regular bit a spot to start that is accurate and centered.  Drill bits will flex, but center drills and spotting drills are very short and rigid – so the flex is for the most part eliminated allowing a more accurate starting point for the regular drill.

Drilling accurate holes is a difficult thing to do even with exceptional and expensive equipment… let alone a $300.00 wood lathe or drill press.  Expecting a hole size within +/-.002” of the stated drill size of most larger drills (like 5/8” or ¾”) is very unlikely, in wood especially.  If an accurate bore is required… for example for use with a pin style mandrel, it is strongly suggested that you drill undersize by 1/64” to 1/32” and then use a chucking reamer to enlarge the hole to size.  Chucking reamers are designed to enlarge holes to an accurate size, but the also will only follow the previous hole.  So if your hole “wanders” because of the wood grain, the reamer will follow it.  It may lessen the extent of the “wandering” but it will still be there.  The absolute most accurate way to bore a hole is to use a metal lathe with a boring bar – but that is not something most people have access to.

Accurate holes are one of the more intricate things to do with limited equipment.  The best thing to do if you want an accurate hole, is stack the deck in your favor… and you do that by drilling undersize and using a chucking reamer to open the hole up to size.

 

Drilling/Reaming feeds and speeds:

Slower is your friend with larger bits.  Generally with 5/8” – 7/8” drills, I will run no faster than 500 RPM and you want to keep the drill moving into the material or back it out completely or it will affect your surface finish.  Its hard to get a specific feed rate of the drill since its run by hand… but you want to take a decent cut when in the cut, and you want the drill out of the hole when its not drilling.

Reamers follow a different rule…  which I refer to as the ½ - 2x rule.  Reamers usually work best when they are run at half the RPM as the drill bit of comparable size, and you want to feed them into the material at 2 times the rate you did with a comparable sized drill.  That usually yields the most accurate bore size and best surface finish.  Though I have found that the “half the RPM” rule is more important than the “2 times” feed – but they both play hand in hand.

 

Collet Chucks:

These are great little tools.  I used to be quite skeptical of them running true, but have learned over the years, that they do center quite well as long as the threads are clean, in good shape, and the back face of the spindle is clean and flat. They have become one of my favorite tools.

There is one MAJOR thing one needs to know about using collet chucks… you NEED to snap the collet into the collet nut, THEN put that assembly into the chuck body loosely, THEN put in what ever you are holding into the collet.  The collet nut has an off center ring that is designed to pull the collet out when loosened…  if it is not seated in the nut prior to assembly it will likely not run true.

I have seen many suggest “put the collet in the chuck, thread the nut on with nothing in the collet, and then tighten down the nut all the way, and then back the nut off and insert what ever you are holding into the collet.”  This MAY seat the collet in the nut, but it also collapses the collet beyond its designed range, and could very likely damage the collet.  I suggest you never do this.  It takes a second to snap the collet in the nut… and takes many more seconds to tighten down the nut and back it off anyway… so doing it the correct way will actually save you time and eliminate the risk of damaging the collet.

One advantage of a collet chuck that mounts to the threaded spindle is when using straight shank expanding mandrel, you do not need to build a draw bar to hold the mandrel in the tapered socket as you do with a MT mount mandrel.

 

Mandrels:

There are many versions out there… from homemade to machined specifically for call making…  expanding, pin type, crush type, taper length, friction fit and so on.  The end goal is to hold something with a hole in it, by the hole so that you can work the outside portion.  Some like to have access to the front and back face of the blank as well as the outside.  Others are happy just having access to the outside or outside and one end.  Only you can decide what works best for you.  To choose a mandrel, you need to pick something that makes sense to you – not what someone says you need.

A mandrels primary job is to hold something by the bore within the blank.  Precision is what allows a mandrel to work.  If the bore is not straight and the same diameter all the way through – you cant expect the mandrel to work to the best of its ability – irrelevant of its design.  Some are more particular to the bore shape and size, and others are less persnickety.  But in the end… the accuracy of any setup, is the sum of all the inaccuracies of all parts involved.  From spindle run out, taper mount run out, mandrel run out, mandrel size, bore size, and method of lock up.

Many people buy pin mandrels and get disappointed by the lack of holding power.  Why?  Because the bore is not sized correctly for the mandrel.  If the blank does not fit the mandrel well to start with, it will not be able to hold the blank to the best of its ability, and the pin will force the blank off to one side as it locks.  It’s the nature of the beast… physics if you will – its how it operates.  I always suggest to people using a pin locking mandrel to use the drill undersize and ream to size with a chucking reamer to get the best results.  A good fit from blank bore to mandrel is essential for proper operation and maximum holding power.  I consider a pin style mandrel for intermediate or advanced call makers because of the need for an accurate bore size and a better understanding of how they operate to get the full benefit from one.

I generally suggest expanding mandrels to all beginners because generally speaking, it is able to deal with somewhat oversized bores that beginners will almost certainly have.  But even still, the better the fit of the blank to the mandrel the more accurate it will be and the better it will hold.  Many people over look this and just tighten the expansion screw more… when what they need is to learn how to get a more accurate bore, and use a different blank.

Another issue with expanding mandrels comes into play when people are trying to mount a blank, turn the OD, and one face of the call, then remove the blank, turn it around, remount it, and work the other end… and then expecting it to be perfectly centered and aligned.  There are two basic things at play here that affect the run out of the blank:  the bore (straightness and diameter) and the mandrel construction.  First the bore issues.  If the bore is tapered (as many are) you have to look at the way the mandrel operates.  Most expanding mandrels only expand on one end.  (This is mainly because of cost – manufacturing an expanding mandrel where the entire body of the mandrel expands is fairly expensive and the gripping ability is limited compared to what you generally see available.  And lets face it, call making is expensive enough without having to deal with even more expensive tools.)  When the mandrel only expands on one end, that means its only holding on the end of the blank.  If the large end of the tapered bore is on that end, the mandrel will have to expand more to hold it.  And if the other end of the bore is oversized too… then it is loose on the mandrel and able to move a little, throwing off the alignment of the blank on the mandrel, and it may move continually while being turned… so it isn’t even a consistent amount run out.  Now, when you take it off, and turn it around, the larger end of the bore is now even larger than the mandrel body, and the expanding portion of the mandrel is on the smaller end of the blank bore and expands less than it did while holding the larger side.  So now the back end of the blank can move even more, the expanding end is expanded to a different diameter than before, and it was already turned while mounted the first time with what ever run out it had then.  Now if the run out from operation one is positioned on the mandrel when flipped over for operation two, and it happens to be 180° off from the first op, you can effectively double or triple your run out just by turning it around all because of the bore being over sized, tapered, or both.  The less taper the more accurate it will be.  The closer the size of the bore to the size of the mandrel, the more accurate it will be.  And the combination of no taper and more accurate bore is exponentially better.  See a pattern here?  Lots of things rely on the one thing people think is so simple… drilling a hole.

Now lets look at the other factor of expanding mandrels.  The even, consistent, and accurate expansion of the mandrel itself.  Most of the mandrels out there have “petals” that expand – that are created by cutting slots in from the end.  Usually an even number of petals because most are cut using a band saw or slitting saw.  Now, to achieve even and accurate expansion, each petal must be equal to the others, and any variation from one to another, and the least rigid petal will move sooner, and farther than the others.  When that happens, the petal that moves first will push the blank off center in that direction.  The odds of perfectly centered slots and equal petals is pretty slim.  Then you can add to that, inconsistencies in the material itself from the extruding or rolling process.  So just the mandrel itself can push the blank off of center.  Now couple that to an inaccurate bore and what do you get?  Yup… more run out.

If you’re main focus is keep everything as perfect as possible, the best approach is to cut the entire part by only mounting it once, and not removing it until it is done with all cutting operations.  That, or start paying a lot of attention to bore sizes, mandrel fit, and systematically deal with each area where run out can be introduced.

But we do need to be honest… there is only so much accuracy really needed when turning a barrel – so you have to decide on your own what is good enough and when you need to start addressing certain issues.

Remember, when using an expanding mandrel in a MT socket on your lathe, you NEED a draw bar to keep the mandrel from vibrating loose and coming out when the lathe is on.  The only other option is to use the live center in conjunction with the mandrel, but that defeats one of the main benefits of the expanding mandrels – being able to access the end of the blank.

Blind mandrels are not always understood…  people many times think a blind mandrel for an insert holds in the same way a mandrel for a call barrel does… by holding the bore of the blank.  That is not the case.  In the case of blind mandrels for call making, the rod of the blind mandrel is only for aligning the blank.  The holding of the blank comes from the tailstock “pinching” the blank between the live center and the face of the blind mandrel (or for those of you using a collet chuck and a piece of rod – the face of the collet and collet chuck).

One important thing about using a blind mandrel that people don’t always realize is that it relies not only on the accuracy of the mandrel, but also the accuracy of the tail stock.  If your live center is not ON CENTER, then when it engages the blank, it will likely be off center, and wood grain can accentuate that even more.  So one must take care to locate the true center of the axis of the mandrel (not the blank), and set the live center at the center of the axis.  This will take some time, patience and learning.  Once you have it figured out it will get easier and faster.  A way to show this misalignment is simple.  Cut a blank and drill it for your blind mandrel.  If it fits loose, you’ll have problems… so be sure it fits well (dang it there is that accurate bore thing again).  Once you have a good fitting blank, slide it on the mandrel.  Take your live center, or a sharp point (like a spotting drill) in a drill chuck, and slowly bring the point to the blank as you spin it by hand.  Keep bringing it up to the blank until it just starts to scribe into the blank.  If it scribes a circle, its not centered.  The larger the circle the farther off it is.  If all you get is a tiny divot, then your doing pretty good.

The other thing to realize with blind mandrels… well any mandrel for that matter… is when metal flexes, it begins to deteriorate.  Some call it “work hardening”.  As the metal flexes, it starts to harden.  Eventually, it will start to crystallize and then crack leaving you with a mandrel without the important alignment portion of the mandrel.  So for the longevity of your mandrel, you want to keep that flexing to a minimum by making sure it is properly aligned before you start turning.

 

What mandrel to hold what parts?

Lots of people have a hard time figuring out what mandrel size they need, if they need more than one for various parts and so on.  Here is the skinny on that…

You need a mandrel that matches the bore you are holding, or your bore needs to match the mandrel.  In reality, the mandrel needs to be at least .0005” smaller than the hole or the hole needs to be that much bigger so that the two will go together.  Think of it this way, you cannot fit a 0.6250” rod in a 0.6250” hole without pressing it in.  Theoretically, a 0.6250” rod will fit in a 0.6251” hole, but in reality that is such little clearance, that it is really not feasible.  In general, .001 clearance is a good point to aim at – but when turning stuff by hand, then sanding and finishing… most are lucky to get in the range of .005” (and that in itself shows why expanding mandrels are usually a better choice – as a .005 oversize hole when using a pin style mandrel may not hold the blank at all, depending on the material).  But regardless of what one hopes to achieve in terms of clearances, the goal is the same… to hold the blank by the bore.

If you are going to have a 5/8” bore, you need a 5/8” mandrel, if you have a .618” bore you need a .618” mandrel.  You are basically matching up sizes… just as you would buy a 5/8 drill bit to drill a 5/8” hole (theoretically – though it seldom really produces a true 5/8” bore), you chose a mandrel the same way.  Now, if you have a step bore in your blank for say a goose call… there is a bit of a different strategy.  The main goal here again, is to hold the blank, but we have to remember, we are only going to be able to hold the blank in one area… usually the end if using an expanding mandrel, and the center 1” if using a pin mandrel.  So at the absolute least, you need to have a mandrel that is the size of the bore at the point it will end up holding the part.  Say you are drilling a goose blank, starting with 7/8” for the keg socket, then a ¾” bore for gut clearance, and then 5/8” out to the mouth piece – you could possibly get by with a 5/8” expanding mandrel, holding only on the outer end of the blank.  But, you have realize about 2/3 of the blank is completely unsupported.  And in the world of turning – unsupported material usually equals chatter when cutting.  So the best thing to do is support the other end of the call.  One can do this simply by turning a “bushing” that fits the mandrel on the ID and the OD fits the blank.  But the more common, and better way to go about it is to use a stepped mandrel.  In this case, if you can support the first 1/3 of the blank on a non expanding portion of the mandrel, it will maintain alignment and quell the chatter, while the expanding end of the mandrel is holding the last 1/3 of the blank to drive it.  With stepped bores, the easiest way to go is to get a mandrel that matches the largest bore on one end, and the smallest bore on the other.  The unsupported middle 1/3 of the call will have little to no ill effect.  But again, its just a case of matching sizes… 7/8 for 7/8 and 5/8 for 5/8.  And support of the blank is the key to eliminating chatter, as well as maintaining the blank as centered as the accuracy of the bores will allow.

Blind mandrels are for turning duck call kegs without a through hole (AR style duck call kegs/inserts).  They operate on a different principle, but are efficient when used correctly.

 

Measuring equipment: 

If you don’t have some, you need some – and a tape measure or vernier caliper that only reads in 1/16” doesn’t count.

Most of the important things in call making cannot be measured in fractional increments…  were dealing with thousandths of an inch, not sixteenths.  If you don’t have measuring equipment that can distinguish between .625” and .620” you will be at a disadvantage, especially when it comes to troubleshooting or intricate or tight tolerance fits.  If you can’t measure a hole drilled with a 5/8” bore and know that its .625 instead of .630 or the diameter of your mandrel is .625” and not .620”, how do you know if you’re mandrel is bad/worn/defective or if your drill bit is drilling on size?  In my day-to-day stuff-  .001” is a lot and .005” is HUGE, but I’m a bit more anal retentive than most.  But its not necessary accuracy for most things… but cork fit, tone channel depth, tenon diameters, bore diameters I feel its almost imperative.  I strongly suggest, at a minimum, a good quality dial caliper in .001” graduations, and a bore mic in the same .001 graduations… but an anvil style micrometer is better.  General theory on accuracy… you can only rely on a measurement from an instrument if its graduations are a multiple of ten times smaller than the measurement you want.  For example, if a micrometer reads in .0001” increments, you can rely on it for measurements as accurate as .001” or if you have a caliper that reads in .0005” increments you should only rely on it for readings of .005 accuracy or less.  That’s the theory, though I have found if you have a good quality mic or caliper, you can more realistically rely on a caliper with .001” graduations to be accurate within +/-.002 (keep in mind +/- means a range of .002” short to .002 long – which is a .004” range of variation) and an anvil style micrometer that reads in .001” is for all intents and purposes accurate to +/-.001”.  What you choose to do is up to you… but the more accurate you can measure; the more accurate you can make something.

All in all… even a cheap dial caliper is better than nothing – but “better” is always “better”.

 

Jigs:

Jigs are just a tool.  In some cases an efficiency tool, other cases learning tools… but they are nothing more than tools.  They make doing something more efficient.  The knowledge to use the tool still has to be there.  Public jigs are a great learning tool.  They get you to a starting point, and you experiment from there.  Many of the public jigs out there are not designed to be the best sound board, they are just someone’s soundboard… maybe good, may be bad, may be just OK.  If you’re buying a public style jig with the intent of having it create the perfect soundboard so you don’t have to put the time and effort into designing your own, you will likely be disappointed in addition to not having a call that is really only your design in looks, the function is from the jig maker.  The public jig I designed has learning in mind, and purposefully not “perfect”.  Its just a starting point to learn from.  I don’t make calls or sound files from the public jig, because that’s not what it is intended for.  If you want to short cut the call making process and not learn soundboards, buy some molded inserts and stuff ‘em in some barrels you turned and go with that.

 

A couple things I feel are worth mentioning…

Making Duck Calls:

Barrels are easy.  They are just a little wood turning project – drill the right size hole, turn a shape, sand it, finish it, and your done.  The challenge of making a duck call is the soundboard.  If you want a design that is all your own, be prepared to spend a lot of time at it.  Jigs can help you get a starting point, but if you are just using someone else’s jig and not doing and work after it comes off the jig – you are just making their soundboard.  Sure jigs are a great time saver to get you to a starting point that is repeatable, so as you learn the changes you want to make, you can more methodically apply them, but you still have to put in the time experimenting and learning.  Once you have something that you want to be able to regularly replicate, you may want to look into a custom jig, which is made from your prototype, and allows you to start at that point… whether it be to duplicate the same soundboard over and over to produce calls or to keep a “benchmark” so to speak to allow you to start at your “newer and better” point to continue your development.

I have spent 3 years on my most recent soundboard design… and finally got what I wanted – and I’ve been making calls since about 1984, so that just shows you, it takes time, even when you have some idea what you are doing.  Granted, I was being very picky about the sound, and it was a different soundboard style than I usually use, so I had a lot to learn in the process, but still, it takes time and experimentation. 

 

Making Goose Calls:

Goose calls require no less effort than duck calls, if you are building your own design.  If you are using molded call guts, then it’s somewhat easier, but there are still plenty of things you need to experiment with.

With goose calls, I would estimate that 80% of how a call sounds and operates is in the bore dimensions and lengths, and the remainder in the reed and guts used.  A ¼” difference in length of the barrel or the keg will make a notable difference, just as a straight bore vs. a back bored keg.  If you are making your own guts, then you can make the gut work with the dimensions you have, but if you are using a set of guts, you have to make the dimensions work for the gut.  How you go about it is up to you… but it will take time and effort.

 

Call making is a do and learn, not an ask and know…

People need to think!  Its not rocket surgery, its physics, logic, fit, black magic, and experience.  Its like trying to “pick up” on a gal in a bar…  you can get all sorts of ideas from people on the forums or emails, but every person is different, and one approach may get you a slap in the face, and the other might get you a phone number, but you never know which pick up line is the right one til you try it.  At least with call making, you can start over :-).  There is plenty of science to picking up a gal in the bar, but there is also the need for experience, luck, effort, and so on.  There is also some element to it that seems like its all voo doo or black magic…  call making is not much different.  You cant know how to make a call that sounds like you want by asking someone how to make it, you have to work through it, learn what things affect what in your specific design.  The only way for someone to tell know what change to make to get a certain thing is to have it be a design they are intimately familiar with.  And odds are, they aren’t all that likely to want to give someone else their exact specs and information, and the likelihood of even being able to portray that information via email, telephone, etc is pretty low – which leaves you with having to experiment and learn.  It’s not a matter of people being snide, not wanting to help, or blowing you off…  They are just protecting their own personal designs that they have worked so hard to come up with.  Think about it this way, if you spent a lot of time designing a widget, you have so much pride in it, and it’s exactly what you want.  Maybe you sell it as a side business, maybe its your main form of income…  are you willing to give just anyone the design info so they can make their own?

This hobby is not for those with the need for instant gratification it takes work, effort, determination, and experience.  Most of that, you cant get with an email or on a forum.  You’re going to have to make some chips, screw some things up, and learn from it.

Look (search, research, and read) before you leap.  Look at the forums before you jump to sending out tons of emails to people asking how to do something or posts that do the same.  So much of what can be discussed on a forum or via email has already been discussed on the forums.  In some cases, discussed to death, over and over, and over.  Asking someone to spend an hour typing out an email or post explaining something that has already been covered many times can really grate on some people, and sometimes that is interpreted as being blown off or rude, when it’s not meant to be.  Think about this, if you were at the library, would you ask the librarian to tell you where a specific book was, or would you just look it up in the catalog system that’s right there just waiting for you to use it?

Another thing you’ll learn from the forums is what kinds of things people can help with via the forums and what they cant.  You’ll find all sorts of suggestions… and likely all are worth trying, but definitive answers are usually few and far between.

 

Selling calls:

If you are getting into call making to sell calls, you might be in it for the wrong reason.  Very few call makers get rich, and those that do, really aren’t “call makers” anymore… most are now manufacturers.  Mass produced parts, molded parts, CNC machines, farming out the manufacture to better equipped companies and then just assembling them for sale.  To be able to make a living selling calls, you need to move a lot of calls, and that is darn near impossible as a one man band.

If you’re a hobby guy, and wanting to sell some calls to support the habit, have at it.  But I think there are some things that need to be thought about…

I see a lot of people come into call making already having a call company name, a website, and names for call lines and they haven’t even made a single call yet.  Would you open a restaurant if you didn’t know how to cook?  And if you did, would you be able to keep the restaurant open once you learned how to cook because of the “first impression” you left your customers with on their first visit?  Call making has a huge “word of mouth” component…  You start selling before your calls are any good, and youll be remember for those calls, and less so for what you are able to create later.  Nothing ventured, nothing gained is very true in life… but sometimes it pays to take your time, learn what you are doing, and then put a value on it and try and sell it.  Just remember, the cart goes after the horse.

The other thing that happens when people jump into the call making “market” before they are ready…  they can degrade the opinion of all small time call makers.  So something done now could affect many, and last a long time.

Also, when you’re starting out, you are going to make some things that look nice, and maybe sound nice… and people are going to want to buy one.  But keep in mind, if you are basing your ideas of selling calls to the world, from your friends and family asking to buy one – be ready for a surprise when you go from trying to sell to people you know to selling to people you don’t know.  You might be able to go like gang busters selling to all your friends and family, and then once that dries up, you may find the general public a bit tougher sell, looking for better deals, cheaper prices, better sounds, custom this or that… and it may be something that puts a huge catch in your git-along.

 

In closing:

I’m not trying to talk anyone out of getting into call making, or telling them not to use molded parts, or not to sell calls…  that’s not it at all.  To me, the goal of call making should be to enjoy it and have fun.  If you cant enjoy what you are doing… its probably not really worth doing is it?  If you make barrels and stuff molded inserts in em and that makes you happy, run with it.  If you like spending hours and hours designing your own thing, and coming up with your own ways to do things… get after it.  You want to have someone CNC parts for you so you can spend more time doing other things, more power to you.  Just enjoy what you are doing, and get out of it what you want.  That’s the end goal isn’t it?

Call making can be done with next to nothing, or you can have thousands invested in tools…  but it all comes back to the effort, knowledge, ingenuity, and passion.  The more effort and passion you have for it, the more fun it will be.  The more knowledge and ingenuity, the easier it will be.  The more tools you have, the more efficient you can be.  But you don’t have to have tons of tools, and know everything just to start…  you just have to have the motivation to try, and the willingness to learn.

Have fun everyone!  And I hope this had helped someone in one way or another.

 

Cheers,

Wade

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