An effective mandrel for turning napkin rings and other annular objects can be made as follows. Choose a suitable hardwood (such as hard maple) and mount the wood to the faceplate with the grain oriented perpendicular to the axis. Turn down the end of the mandrel to give a slip fit with the workpiece, leaving a larger-diameter locating shoulder on the base as shown in the sketch. Next, drill and tap the end of the mandrel for a tapered pipe plug of suitable size. First select the recommended tap drill size for the pipe thread and drill into the end of the mandrel 3/4 in. or so deeper than the locating shoulder. Then tap the hole so that a pipe plug will thread in halfway. The resulting threads, though rough in appearance, are quite strong if the grain is oriented as suggested. To complete the mandrel, cut two crossed saw kerfs to the same depth as the hole. To use, slide on the workpiece and screw the pipe plug in the hole. The plug will expand the mandrel, gripping the workpiece firmly. Edward F. Groh, Naperville, Ill. and Charles E. Cohn, Clarendon Hills, Ill. Fine Woodworking Magazine, August 1980 No.…
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