HSM Header

A Simple and Solid Ball Turner

by Donald Doerner

Photos 1-3 should help illustrate the ball turner I made for my lathe. The lathe is a 9” Utilathe, built by Standard Modern. The ball turner fits in the lathe’s existing cross-slide and I would imagine this simple design could be used on a number of different lathes.


The turner includes a toolholder, sized to place a 60° carbide insert cutter at the lathe’s centerline. Two inserts are fastened to the top of the toolholder, which allows a wide range of inside and outside radii to be turned. A slot in the base provides a means to adjust the cutter for different sizes.


The ball shown on the 3/8” diameter handle was made with this cutter and I have used it with good results on a number of other projects. I hope this idea can help someone out; it works great for me!


Thanks Donald, your subscription has been extended by an issue!

Please do us a tremendous favor and forward this e-mail to your machining friends!

subscribe image

Village Press Publications, 2779 Aero Park Dr., Traverse City, MI 49686, 800-447-7367