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Grinding graphite shaft to length ?


skraper

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You could do that sure.  Just put tape around the spot you’d want to stop at so you don’t go too far.  You could also do it by hand with sandpaper over a block of wood.  1/8” isn’t very much length at all and will disappear quickly.

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"Side Grinding" is not a good idea on a bench grinder. I'd hate to be the guy that said "Do it" and then you damaged the piece or worse.

 

Held at an angle with the wheel rotating "away" from the piece is the best way to use a bench grinder. I will not have on my conscience a "side grinding" recommendation should you come back here lamenting with either a "did I trash this shaft" post or worse.

 

The biggest reason for that is the susceptibility to chatter on the wheel. The sides are not uniform because they aren't designed for grinding. It will make it hard to hold the piece steady and it can throw the piece.

Sure, you can be very careful and get away with it, but like I said.... 😄 

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8 minutes ago, Mikey_HACKilroy said:

"Side Grinding" is not a good idea on a bench grinder. I'd hate to be the guy that said "Do it" and then you damaged the piece or worse.

 

Held at an angle with the wheel rotating "away" from the piece is the best way to use a bench grinder. I will not have on my conscience a "side grinding" recommendation should you come back here lamenting with either a "did I trash this shaft" post or worse.

 

The biggest reason for that is the susceptibility to chatter on the wheel. The sides are not uniform because they aren't designed for grinding. It will make it hard to hold the piece steady and it can throw the piece.

Sure, you can be very careful and get away with it, but like I said.... 😄 

Using an abrasive cut-off wheel, it is totally fine to do as long as the shaft isn't splintered.  I have done it 1000's of times to square off a tip or a butt cut or to take off a smidgeon of length.  In fact, if you watch any videos from the TM Tour Van, you can see Trottie do it all the time to remove the "feathers" from the cut end.

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1 minute ago, Socrates said:

Using an abrasive cut-off wheel, it is totally fine to do as long as the shaft isn't splintered.  I have done it 1000's of times to square off a tip or a butt cut or to take off a smidgeon of length.  In fact, if you watch any videos from the TM Tour Van, you can see Trottie do it all the time to remove the "feathers" from the cut end.


I didn't say it couldn't be done, I said it is unwise, and I stand behind my statement. 😄 

 

It's just graphite, but he was talking about removing actual material straight onto the side of the wheel. He also doesn't work on a tour van. He'll probably be fine; my statement makes no guarantees of failure. It simply acknowledges the possibility to a guy that had to ask. 😄 

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2 hours ago, 596 said:

I'd think it would much easier and safer to just tape it and cut the 1/8th inch off with the appropriate hacksaw and blade.  Should only take 1 or 2 minutes for the cut.

Cutting an 1/8" or less is difficult to do with real accuracy.  Far easier and more precise to nibble off a little bit as needed.

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Blade thickness on most cutoff wheels is close to an 1/8.  Just take a blades with off the end … way easier than grinding 

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11 minutes ago, Phabs said:

Blade thickness on most cutoff wheels is close to an 1/8.  Just take a blades with off the end … way easier than grinding 

What if you are taking off 1/16" or 1/32"?  Trust me.  Way easier to use the side of the cut-off wheel to nibble off that amount.

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1 hour ago, Socrates said:

What if you are taking off 1/16" or 1/32"?  Trust me.  Way easier to use the side of the cut-off wheel to nibble off that amount.

Getting a little ridiculous aren’t we?  I’d be surprised if anyone was that sensitive to length.  You’re trimming the width of a human hair at a 1/16…. Thats a joke to try and trim 

Edited by Phabs

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2 hours ago, Phabs said:

Getting a little ridiculous aren’t we?  I’d be surprised if anyone was that sensitive to length.  You’re trimming the width of a human hair at a 1/16…. Thats a joke to try and trim 

Absolutely not.  You never should make your first cut at exactly what you think you need just in case you made a slight error in marking or measuring. Cut - test fit - check for length - finalize your length.  No reason you can't get it within 1/16"  or exact (human hair is 1/300").  I'd rather nibble a small amount off the butt end than find out I'm a little short and need to compromise.  Not only for my own clubs, but I make some clubs for a couple of guys who are very precise.

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I have a cut-off wheel that fits my grinder, for cutting shafts to length, but I almost never use it.  

 

I put a piece of tape on the shaft, defining the cut line.  Then I use the corner of a regular grinding wheel to chop the shaft off.  I grind above my tape line, then use the face of the grinder, to dress the cut back to a perfect length.  

 

No doubt, I'll die a horrible death for breathing carbon dust.  And all my shafts will splinter, destroying themselves.  Guess I'm just lucky, though...

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I do this very thing all the time. It's super easy and I've never damaged a shaft doing this.

 

I'd recommend taping the shaft for one  reason only - to give you a good visual guide for how much to cut off - i.e. put the very edge of the masking tape at the exact cutoff point.

 

The actual grinding technique is to only grind one point of the circumference of the shaft at any one time. I do this by pointing the shaft directly at the wheel and tip the far end of the shaft up to ensure it only grinds from the top-most part of the shaft. Then I lightly guide the shaft into the grinding wheel and in the same motion, spin the shaft around its long axis. Since you're spinning the shaft with your hands, you'll only get about half a revolution per "spin". Pull the shaft away from the wheel before you reach the end of your "spin". Rinse and repeat until you reach the end of the tape.

 

Don't let the grinding wheel touch the bottom part of the shaft as that's where it could grab fibers and pull them away. By always grinding from the outside towards the hollow middle, the fibers sort of support themselves and shear away very cleanly.

 

On the topic of side grinding, yes, that's not best practice, but it's still done all the time in metal working shops. Where it gets dangerous is doing heavy grinding of metal so the side loads into the wheel can overload the wheel. I seriously doubt you could approach this level of force with a graphite shaft. (where I do get a bit strict about side grinding is with thin cutoff wheels - never side load those - ever)

 

 

Edited by dubbelbogey
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I use a belt sander to grind down my graphite and steel shafts to the exact measurement required. 

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