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turnable solid plastic dowels? - Wipedout - 03-08-2020

Thought I'd throw this out there and I posted this in HI and Off topic as well

I have these LED landscape lights - picked them up from home depot on closeout  for $1.99 each

They have been great and I bought about 6 extra in case any went out.  So far they all are good and they are on every night from dusk till dawn

These are them  https://www.homedepot.com/p/Low-Voltage-1-2-Watt-Black-Integrated-LED-Landscape-Path-Light-CW4001-08W/300862393

What has happened is between the pups and the landscape crew I now have about 6 that the removable spike in the bottom has broken off

I thought about making a replacement out of wood but in the wet soil here they will rot quickly.  So I thought maybe I can find a plastic dowel (solid) that has a diameter of 3/4" and turn them on the lathe

Any suggestions of where I can find something like that?  Picture of the spike


RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - Arlin Eastman - 03-08-2020

I have used .75" UHMW dowel rod that I got from EBay and it turns great.  I got a 6' length of it and still have some left.

1" is just a tad more then 3/4"




RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - Wipedout - 03-08-2020

Thanks so much Arlin! Appreciate it. Didn't think of UHMW

RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - Arlin Eastman - 03-08-2020

Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh   There is SOOOO much I do not think of even while turning.  Yes

RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - Woodshop - 03-09-2020

no reason you can't use wood. Ive turned stakes from pressure treated lumber. leave the stake end larger and turn a dowel on one end to fit your light/pipe. drive in the steak first and slide the pipe on the dowel. if the light outlast the steak just turn another. their cheep and will last years.


RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - crokett™ - 03-09-2020

As I said in the other thread, rebar. Aside from never worrying about breaking anything again, you can easily pull the lights to mow or whatever.

RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - sniper - 03-11-2020

My first thought, because I have some, is Corian counter-top material. It's 3/8" thick, so glue 2 pieces together with CA and have fun. A little heavy, but since you're shoving it into the ground, that may be a plus.

RE: turnable solid plastic dowels? - TDKPE - 03-11-2020

I've turned a number of things using HDPE.  Same stuff most milk jugs are made of, but you can buy it in strips and sheets.  Starboard is a brand name, but there are others.  It'll last essentially forever in the ground.

That stuff turns really well.  Makes continuous, long shavings which wrap around the item you're trying to make, so you have to stop every so often and clean out the nest.  

I believe 3/4" is the max thickness, but if you're turning tapers, that only matters at the top, and even then, you're nipping off the corners so you can sneak up on the fit even if the stock is not perfectly centered.

Also consider PVC construction lumber.  Way cheaper, and available in smaller pieces (strips) from the BORGs, but I don't know how it will behave on the lathe.