Turning Tools

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HLW

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Harold
Okay,I guess this question will be open for various opinions. I've noticed Packard has their own brand of turning tools and I was wondering how they stack up to others such as Sorby ,Thompson ,Crown and P&N just to name a few? And I understand as always, it comes to price and what you can get for the price. But I think you can learn a lot from peoples experiences and opinions.Thanks.:BangHead::icon_thum
 

ScottM

Scott
Staff member
Corporate Member
I am not an expert turner. I do own a couple of Packard turns and I am happy this them. I would buy them again. Most modern day turning tools are HSS (high speed steel) but not all HSS is the same. They are made from different alloys. The harder the steel the long it will hold an edge. The down side is the harder the steel the hard it is to get a edge on the first time.

Packard is a small NC based company. They have good service.
 

NCTurner

Gary
Corporate Member
I have used them, and actually really like my bowl gouge, compares well to my crown and sorby's. I picked mine up used for a great price though, in looking at the pricing since, the difference is nominal. Example their 1/2" M-2 BG is $59.95 a Doug T. unhandled 1/2" BG is $55.00 and a better tool.
 

aplpickr

New User
Bill
Packard tools are as good as any Sheffield steel. I believe that they are actually made by Crown. Brad Packard supports turning with his pocketbook. For several years he donated $5000/yearly in gift certificates to the national symposium. I did not make it this year, I do not know if he donated this year. His whole staff is friendly and knowledgeable. I own several of his tools, they are equal to the others. His store is only 25 miles down the interstate, I always come home with a smaller bank account.
 

boxxmaker

New User
Ken
I am a Doug thompson fan,but that's just me.Just about all the tools will do a fine job,just that you may have to sharpen them more often,therefour having to relace them more often.I turn a lot of hardwood that is VERY dry and I find that Dougs tools go a lot longer before having to resharpen them that other tools.One example was the David Elsworth signature gouge.I would have to touch up the edge at least twice as often as I would Dougs.
 

ScottM

Scott
Staff member
Corporate Member
They knock 10% off when buying two of more of their tools so think in pairs :widea:.

"Honey look at the money I saved by buying two and not just one :wsmile:"
 

cyclopentadiene

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As long as you purchase one of the major brands of turning tools, all will work equallt well. In my experience, the more expensive suppliers i.e. Sorby tend to hold an edge longer and therefore last a little longer but the higher cost seems to average out on life of the tool.
I too have become a huge fan of Thompson tools. The cost is very reasonable and they can be used with a One way handle or make your own. The edge lasts about two times as long as a Sorby. This saves some time by not needing to sharpen as often. The only disadvantage is these have a very basic grind when purchased and they are a little harder to shape when less experienced at sharpening.
 
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