Countless turners have started their woodturning journey with the classic Ashley Iles 'Brailsford' starter set of six handcrafted HSS wood turning tools.
There is a wealth of experience and careful consideration behind this selection, with input from some of the country's best turners; as well as covering the main tools of work held between centres, the Brailsford set is designed to equip novice turners to explore introductory faceplate work like dishes and small bowls.
Handmade in Lincolnshire from cryo hardened M2 High Speed Steel and, where appropriate, O1 oil hardened carbon tool steel, the tools are individually crafted and hand ground to shape by skilled craftsmen who trace their lineage of apprenticeship straight back to the little mesters of Sheffield.
Like all Ashley Iles tools they are superb examples of their type, with no quarter given on quaity and refinement.
The 'All Rounder'
10 mm. (3/8 in.) diameter - This tool embodies a new concept. It has been developed, after lengthy testing, from an original idea of Martin Pidgen's. Made from HSS it has a carefully designed flute that enables it to be used as a multi-purpose tool: it can be used for roughing out, for finished spindle work, and (as a bowl gouge) for smaller faceplate work.
Roughing out gouge
13 mm. (1/2 in.) diameter - This tool, designed by Reg Sherwin, is made from 16 mm. (5/8 in.) HSS round bar. The half-round flute produces a deep but narrow shaving. Because the full diameter of the bar is extended into the handle there is minimum vibration even when turning down 4 in. or 5 in. square timber and, because it is relatively slim, it can get into places where other roughing gouges are too big.
30 mm. (1 ¼ in.) diameter - This is made in high quality carbon steel which produces a superb edge that is easy to sharpen and, when it is necessary to modify the shape, is easy to regrind. Although it is made of carbon steel this tool will have a long life because it is used only for light finishing work and does not have to be sharpened often. When making the planing cut the generous width of the tool makes it safer to use.
6 mm. (1/4 in.) diameter - This HSS tool can be used for both large and small diameter spindle work. The diameter of the bar has been increased so that it is slightly thicker than normal ¼ in. gouges; this provides greater strength when overhanging the tool rest to reach, for example, the inside of egg cups or goblets.
3 mm. (1/8 in.) diameter - This HSS tool will part-off with less resistance and wastage than wider tools. Its parallel sides make it a more versatile tool than its over specialised cousins. Ground at the same angle as a skew it can be used in areas where there is not room for a wider tool.
Round nose scraper
19 mm. (3/4 in.) diameter - This tool is made from carbon steel that readily provides a good burr for scraping inside hollow items. Because it is relatively narrow it can enter small openings. The thickness has been increased to minimise the vibration that might be experienced when reaching over the tool rest.
Supplied in a purpose-made tool roll.