Wood Piercing Unit…

After checking with John at woodart-products I find I can mention the mysterious package after all, so today I had a play with it. But what is it?

I’ll tell you tomorrow…or the day after…or maybe next week…

Now that this picture of an ex hollowform has warmed you up I’ll tell you..

Woodart-products are about to launch a wood piercing unit onto the website, and John wanted my opinion on it. So here it is for what it’s worth…but before that an admission…I don’t do an awful lot of piercing, and so am not the best qualified to comment, but having half a brain and a little experience I thought it might be of some little value so here goes…

The driving unit is solidly built in a steel shell, and houses a variable speed control, forward/reverse switch, and a direct or foot-pedal control switch, along with a green neon operating indicator (which is important for those with hearing difficulties) and the socket for the handset.

The handset is lighter than many similar tools, and has an 1/8″ collet which locks and unlocks with a simple twist, but locks solidly. It will take all the standard dremel-type bits you may have, and comes supplied with two cutters for piercing.

Here’s the unit, handset and foot pedal (which works best on the floor rather than the bench!)

When I have pierced in the past I have used either the Axminster fordom-type drive with flexishaft, or the dremel, and whilst both do the job I have always had an issue with vibration – which can result in RSI – and noise; neither being what you could call quiet in operation, but the woodart unit is almost silent, and certainly does not cause concern, and likewise the vibration issue is barely even worth considering. It’s very user friendly in both respects.

So after trying the same cutter to a Dremel Multi, the Axminster and the woodart unit it was very quickly apparent which I would go for if I were using one for any length of time: the woodart without a doubt. It’s quiet, vibration is so low it’s not a problem, and there is no less power than either of the other two systems. The woodart has a top speed of 35,000 RPM, which I think is faster than the Axminster, and about the same as the Dremel (though I forgot to check!).

I used a dry natural-edged vessel in Sycamore to try the piercing on. It was probably a little thicker than you would produce to pierce, but it was handy and going on the fire anyway. Despite being thicker the unit cuts very easily and very cleanly. Here’s a shot of the piercing straight from the unit…

I’ve left this picture oversized so you can click on it for a closer look. There is no fuzziness to the cut which would require sanding afterwards; it’s clean and tidy right off the tool, which has to be a good thing. Delicate piercing won’t withstand too much abrading after all. But the picture also illustrates my own problem with piercing…it all looks the same! So…

Next time I’ll try and do  a whole vessel, and attempt to make the finished article NOT resemble a Pho or Richardson or Hanbury piece. Now there’s a challenge for you all…

In conclusion I think the unit is perfectly suited to piercing wood. Everthing you need is in the box – even a spare set of carbon brushes - and you can plug and play. If you are considering piercing then I would strongly recommend this unit over the others I have used. Had I known such a thing was available when I bought the fordom-type unit I think I’d have bought this instead…although I do use the reciprocating carver so maybe both!

Availablity and price can be obtained from John via: http://www.woodart-products.co.uk/