Twin spindle turning centers are a popular choice among many woodturners because of their ability to turn and chisel the same size piece of wood in half. Although they are commonly referred to as spindles, these centers are very much different from your typical spindle. They have two feet, instead of one, and do not need to be turned with a table saw.
A spindle is basically a wooden tool that is designed to have its own permanent axis. The spindle has a stationary horizontal or vertical center that is fixed in place. Two arms can rotate independently around the center. The angle at which the arms are rotated is dictated by the spindle’s top plate. The top plate is the spindle body.
A spindle has many uses. It can be used to cut hardwoods like oak, maple, birch and others. A spindle has several other uses, including being used as a main table saw for a small workshop, a base for a lathe and a generator for lawnmowers. A spindle is also an ideal way to create patterns on a piece of wood and create fine intricate shapes.
Spindles are used by carpenters for carving and finishing wood. Often spindles are used to carve furniture. In order to turn a spindle the saw must be attached to the spindle body. Turning a spindle is easy, but it requires skill and the right tools. It is important to understand that a spindle turning center is simply a lower body, with arms and no permanent axis, that is used for turning.
A spindle turning center has two big disadvantages. One is that the spindle cannot be turned with a table saw. This is true with all spindle turning centers except those made specifically for small workbenches.
The second disadvantage is that a spindle is only able to work with the same diameter lumber as the tine. It does not work with other sizes of lumber and woods. A small table saw is needed for smaller projects, and a lathe is necessary for larger projects.
Twin spindle turning centers are easily the most cost effective way to turn a spindle. By purchasing a pair of spindles you will save hundreds of dollars over time. There are many cheap spindle turning centers that use smaller than average blades. The biggest advantage of a twin spindle turning center is that they offer a good balance between the functions of a table saw and a lathe.
Twin spindle turning centers are the simplest and easiest way to turn a spindle. Most of them are sold as sets. While it might seem like a wasted purchase it is actually a good deal. You would have to pay twice the price to get the two arms at a good quality table saw.