An Eccentric Chuck is used for holding an object off-center from the axis of rotation. On high speed lathes, great care must be taken to balance the work when running eccentrically, but, on a rose engine lathe, the rotation is significantly slower so this is less of an issue. That is why home made versions are so easily made.
The eccentric chuck shown to the right could also be inclined as shown, making it also an oblique chuck.
Barbara Dill is an artist and woodturner who makes many great pieces using multi-axis turning. Whilst she does not use an ornamental lathe, her works can be great inspiration for the ornamental turner.
Some modern eccentric chucks designed for higher speed lathes include the ones shown to the left, but they can certainly be used on a rose engine lathe.
Additional pictures of this device
Jon Magill demonstrated the eccentric chuck shown below at the 2016 AAW International Symposium in Atlanta.
Home-made Eccentric Chuck Images courtesy Jon Magill
Notes on making one
- Bill Ooms made one using Corian. This YouTube video, Eccentric Chuck, shows how he did it.
- Challenges with the Double Eccentric Slide Setup by Danny Wells. Ornamental Turners International Newsletter, Volume 27, No. 1 - May, 2020, pg. 27
- Ornamental Obsessions - Slightly Eccentric by Jon Magill. This article has more pictures and details. AAW magazine, "American Woodturner", Fall 2009, pg 60-62.
- Sauercracker - Constructing an Eccentric Chuck and how to make a Shell Pattern by Jean-Claude Charpigon. The Society of Ornamental Turners Bulletin 144, Spring, 2021, pg. 2
Books and Papers
- Eccentric Turning, by an Amateur (actually, Nathaniel Brown Engleheart)
- John Jacob Holtzapffel's 1884 book, Turning and Mechanical Manipulation, vol. 5 - The Principles and Practice of Ornamental or Complex Turning is a great source of information.
Disclaimer: eMail comments to me at OTBookOfKnowledge @ Gmail.com. The process of woodturning involves the use of tools, machinery and materials which could cause injury or be a health hazard unless proper precautions are taken, including the wearing of appropriate protective equipment.