Woodchuck Powered Taper Tool
Getting the point to sit square on the end of your arrow is essential for good arrow flight, I can't possibly be alone in finding that often a taper tool will leave me with a less than perfect taper, it can sometimes be more tapered on one side than the other and it doesn't tale much to throw the point out of kilter. There can be many reasons for this, a dodgy taper tool, a shaft which isn't quite the size it purports to be, I have had shafts which come smaller than they should be or larger, there is also the nagging doubt in my mind that each manufacturer is using a slightly different scale as to what 11/32 really is. So depending on what make of shaft you use you may find , as I do that certain taper tools will do a better job.
There are reviews of other taper tools on here but this one is about the Woodchuck model, it could be construed as overkill to produce a powered tool just to taper an inch of shaft 5°, but I guess it really depends how many arrows you make. I make a lot and I know friends that love to make arrows for others, there is also the gadget freaks, I know one or two of those too, and of course those whose workshops are temples to tools. I must admit to being in that category, I can sit quite happily unsupervised for hours on end surrounded by my tools - every man should have his shed.
The Base is Aluminium and although it look solid enough I suspect that careless use might see it crack and break, it's basically a grinding wheel with a sanding disc on it, what makes it different from a standard bench grinder is that it has two grooves as a jig template moulded in to the base. One will taper the point at 5° and the other will grind a taper for the nock. So far so good.
Each shaft size will require the tool to be adjusted, which is accomplished in two stages, first by moving the wheel itself back and forward, either nearer or further away from the shaft and secondly by the use of a long screw which acts as a stop on the shaft and preventing too much to be pushed into the sanding disc.
I like to think I am pretty handy and in my old age I have even started to look at instructions before using a new tool. the instructions with this one don't really help and pretty much say just what I have above, so it's trial and error until both adjustments have been made correctly - the easiest way is to find a shaft you already have that is tapered to your satisfaction and offer that up to the sander and tighten the screws from there. When feeding in the shaft it will be necessary to rotate or slowly spin the shaft to achieve the taper, be sure to keep the shaft level and tucked in to the groove or it will go awry.
Once again as an American product you won't have any issues with the strong little motor and a converter will be needed as this operates at 120V AC
Despite the fact that it works well and that I do at times have many shafts to taper I use this tool less than I could, when tapering less than 2 dozen shafts I reach for my JVD metal taper tool.
There would be nothing to stop you using a full size bench grinder and making a jig to feed in the arrows - in fact there is a little taper block jig reviewed on this site which is made for just this purpose.
Features & Design
A neat little sanding disc with it's own motor and grooves for the shaft to ensure a perfect tape. More instructions please.
Fiddly to set up and even when you think you have it right you can spend ages making fine ajustments
Value for Money
I guess it could be good value if you are doing tapering by the hundreds every day, but most folks don't and $150 is a lot of money
I can't nock it for doing what it says it will do but at $150 I think I would like it to make a cup of tea as well as tapering shafts. If money is not an issue or you are a professional and "in the game"then it would be worth 4.5