Designed by Jimmy Clewes, the JC MiniMate is an extremely versatile, user friendly, value for money, hollowing/cutting tool made for use on smaller woodturning projects.
These tools do not scrape they CUT! And, with a lot of control due to the design and angle of the cutter on each tool. JC MiniMate has a 6mm cup cutter (micro crystalline carbide cutters sharpened with diamond), set in a machined pocket at approximately 22 degrees. The cutter is drawn into the pocket by a conical-tapered screw, giving a very secure, stable seating preventing the cutter 'fluttering'.
This arrangement allows for a more user-friendly, less aggressive cut which is great for confidence building, making these tools ideal for all users - including beginners. The cutter is set just below the surface of the tool, which helps protect the cutter from wayward and very irritating chips.
The tool is supplied unhandled. You can make your own handle, or you could use one of the many on the market. Jimmy recommends making the handle longer rather than shorter and at least 18 inches in length. The tool tang is turned to a rounded form so that the fit into the handle is snug and stable, unlike square-tanged tools.
The JC Mates will cut wet wood, dry wood, long grain or end grain with ease. The cutter is positioned so that the cut is limited to the depth that the cutter is protruding from the main tool shank. This greatly reduces the chance of those huge catches that can be experienced with "self-feeding" scrapers. The learning curve of these tools is really quite short.
Whilst it cannot be truthfully said that these are the only tools you will ever need, these tools do effectively bridge the gap between scraping and the gouge-style tools, the use of which has to be learned before they can be used effectively - and safely. In some cases, these tools will execute cuts that are difficult or impossible to do with conventional tools, and where conventional scraping tools would be a huge disadvan
Jimmy is not your ordinary woodturner. Upon a first meeting one would think of him as a renegade, a free thinker and not within the stereotypical image of a woodturner - and you wouldn't be far wrong.
Since his arrival on the proffessional woodturnign scene, Jimmy has been a true breath of fresh air, challenging the norms, the convensions and the status quo, and in doing so has helped push the practice and tools along with him.
Whether it is his design inspiration and guidance gained from his superb DVDs or getting your hands on his innovative hollowing tools, items bearing Jimmy's name can be approached with confidence and reassurance.