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Oneway Mastercut Tools

by Curtis Turner
Round Rock, TX

Note: Click on any picture to see a larger version.

I recently made a purchase that I had put off for way too long. I finally decided to try the Oneway's Sure Grip Hosaluk Tool Handle along with several Mastercut gouges.

I have been testing this set up for about a month now. I wanted to share with you my observations.

The tools I purchased from Highland Woodworking included:

  1. 17 1⁄2" Sure Grip Handle
  2. Mastercut 1/2" Double-Ended Spindle Gouge
  3. Mastercut 5/8" Double-Ended Bowl Gouge

I opted for the larger sized gouges, because it just seemed to make a good match with the larger Sure Grip handle.

The gouges are made from CPM M4 high speed steel, which Oneway states should last up to 3 times longer than conventional steels. The Crucible Particle Metallurgy (CPM) process results in a finer carbide structure creating a more consistent product.

This manufacturing process results in a tool that should have longer edge retention over lower graded metals.

This hopefully will mean that I can turn longer before re-sharpening. It is too early for me to state that this claim has been proven through practice. However, early indications seem to confirm that CPM M4 does have longer edge retention. I do want to point out this will be difficult to confirm with anything other than anecdotal data. There are so many factors that come into play. Some of these factors that immediately come to mind are type of wood, how clean the wood is (i.e. cutting through dirt filled bark) and the force used to engage the tool.

The Tools

You have a few choices with the Mastercut series. The gouges come in either single or double ended tools. I opted for the double ended tool. Yes, it's more expensive than the single ended option however, it is at a good discount relative to purchasing two single ended tools. So, I think the double ended option is a relative bargain.

The Handles

You have two choices when it comes to the Sure Grip handles:

  1. 17 1⁄2" handle, 2.5 lbs.
  2. 12" handle 1.75 lbs.
  • Each handle is bored to accept 5/8" diameter tool on one end and the other is bored to 1/2".
  • Double set screws lock the tool in place.
  • The handles are of solid construction so weight cannot be added.

Of course, there are several adaptors which allow for the use of smaller diameter tools.

  1. Handle Adapter - 5/8" to 3/8"
  2. Handle Adapter - 5/8" to 3/4"

Advantages and Disadvantages

These tools have a quality presence in the hand. There is no question that the Sure Grip handle combined with the Mastercut gouges are up to the task of serious turning.

The advantages to me are the weight and mass. These are heavy tools and they can remove a large amount of material quickly. The handles are covered with a plastic material which I find comfortable to hold and provide a positive grip.

Their heavy duty construction absorbs much of the vibration while turning. Although, some may find the weight to be a disadvantage.

These are excellent tools for anyone that travels to teach or demonstrate. The double ended tools are perfect in this regard. One can have the same grind on both ends rotating to the fresh end once the other becomes dull. In my case, I have different grinds on my bowl gouge to maximize my options.

In Summary

While I have only had these tools a short period, I find myself just looking for an excuse to use them. I don’t normally feel that way about new tools. Of course, I get excited about new tools but this seems different, maybe I found "The One"!

CLICK HERE for our Oneway Turning Tools Department

Curtis was a former President of Central Texas Woodturners , is a member of the American Association of Woodturners , and a member of Fine Woodworkers of Austin . Curtis teaches and demonstrates nationally for Lie-Nielsen Toolworks. He also teaches for TechShop. He owns a studio where he teaches and works. Curtis lives in Central Texas with his wife and four young children. Take a look at his website at www.curtisturnerstudio.com .

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