Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

If you’ve ever used a lathe, you know turning wood is one of the most satisfying and relaxing things you can do in a woodshop. What can often take some of the delights of turning away is the laborious task of sharpening. In fact, sharpening systems can often exceed the cost of the tools themselves. Recently though, advances in carbide machining have allowed brands like Woodpeckers to make turning tools that leave your sharpening woes in the past. Today we are going to explore these in the Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

A Little About The Brand-

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Woodpeckers Tools is a somewhat iconic brand in the woodworking community. They are made right here in the USA, in Strongsville, Ohio with some of the best materials and processes available today. They manufacture some of the best squares around and are a coveted addition to any professional woodworking shop.

Beyond that though, they make a slew of specialty tools. Everything from Guide Systems, Edge Rulers, clamping tools for miters and maintaining square joints, and even larger tools like Router Tables and accessories. These have gained incredible love for their ability to not only produce incredible results but also save users time and also increase accuracy.

Detailed Look

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

The Ultra Shear Turning Tools Start with a rock maple handle for comfort and balance. I am testing their mid-size Tools, but they also offer full-size and pen-sized tools.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Woodpeckers offers three insert shapes-

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Square- is best or initial roughing and shaping, as well as outside curves.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Round- is incredible for bowl roughing and creating inside curves

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Diamond- provides a way to create crisp lines and fine details.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

The NanoGrain Carbide insert provides a long-lasting sharp edge.

The inserts can be easily rotated to provide a fresh edge when they dull. The square and round should have four total rotations, while the diamond has two.

Replacement inserts are available for purchase and are compatible with many other carbide-insert turning tools.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

A specialty designed ChroMoly shaft provides a smooth surface for resting and movement along the tool rest.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

The unique shaft design has multiple angles to provide stability while turning for both rough and fine finishing. When resting at 90 degrees, the tool can remove large amounts of stock easily. When rotating the tool to 45 degrees during use, it provides an incredibly smooth surface that reduces or eliminates the sanding required.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

The bottom of the handle has an aluminum metal ferrule and end cap. The end cap protects from splitting but also has a handy label allowing for easy visibility when tools are stored.

Value

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Woodpeckers Tools are often seen as an investment, as all precision woodworking tools are. In the case of the Ultra-Shear Turning Tools though, I am not sure you could find a better value for turning. The Mid-Size Tools run $279.00 for the set of three or $99.00 individually on Woodpeckers Website. When you consider the cost of a set of standard turning tools and a sharpening system, these tools save considerable money overall.

Replacement inserts cost between 15 and 20 dollars apiece. With the carbide edge holding its sharp edge much longer than other turning tool materials, I think this is still an excellent value.  Since the time and labor that goes into properly sharpening a full set of turning tools can be intense, the ability to quickly achieve a sharp edge with little effort is definitely a massive benefit. Even with small ongoing maintenance costs, the time and effort saved definitely makes these tools a great value.

My Thoughts

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

When I first got into turning again after years away from it, I bought a really inexpensive set of tools to see how much I would use it. The reality is, that while I saved a few dollars upfront, I definitely underestimated just how much time and energy would go into sharpening them frequently. There is a significant learning curve that takes time to perfect, not to mention the cost of a good sharpening setup too. Turning is definitely a hobby that has upfront costs, and the investment in these tools is a no brainer.

For me, The Ultra Shear turning tools are amazing for their time and cost savings, yes. Beyond that, they are incredibly comfortable and well made. With the maple handle and size of the front shaft, it is well balanced and easy to maneuver against the rest. They are slightly lighter than traditional tools, but I found they had significantly fewer vibrations too. All in all, they were comfortable to use and highly responsive to movement, making turning more pleasant than ever.

Woodpeckers Ultra-Shear Turning Tools Review

One feature I think really enhances this tool is the ability to shear or scrape your turnings too. Because the shaft has multiple rest points, you can turn the tool to allow the cutting surface to meet the wood differently. This gives an incredible finish and really stands out as an incredible feature on these tools.

With traditional tools, you have ten or so that do the job of these three. I value ways to keep things like this simple because it allows you to fully enjoy turning in a way you may not otherwise. I would also say that users of all experience levels will appreciate these tools. Experienced users will appreciate the ease and simplicity while adding in the features like the angled shaft for shearing will improve even the most experienced users finish product. New turners will find this set to have a smaller learning curve compared to traditional tools, not only in use but also in maintenance.

All in all, the Woodpeckers Ultra Shear Turning Tools are an amazing addition to a shop. Since I have had these, I haven’t reached for any of my traditional tools- period. They are pretty much everything you could want in a tool like this. They produce stellar results, are easy to maintain and manage to do so while being an excellent value.

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