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Thread: Finally Getting My Lathe

  1. #21
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    The two types of Cutter blanks I am familiar with are 5% Cobalt or 10% Cobalt. 5% is "Softer" so easier to grind, won't stay sharp as long, and were a bit less expensive. Longer periods of cutting before touch up was worth it to me over the slightly higher cost. Here's the label of what I used.

    Attachment 97674

  2. #22
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    You guys are serious about helping me spend my money!

    Okay, I live in Southwestern Alaska, specifically Bethel, Alaska. This area is all tundra which is comprised of the top four to six feet not being frozen, the rest is down to about 1000 feet. The ground moves around. I have to have the house and shop leveled about every two years. The construction method here is post and pad on a large sand pad. Mine is 3/4 acre with 18" styrofoam insulation on the bottom and 8-feet of material on top. The shop rests on 12, 12" square treated posts on the four-foot square 8" thick pads.

    My shop is 28'x34' with floor made from 2x12's on 14" centers sitting on three main 6x18" beams. The floor itself are 1 1/2" tongue and groove plywood, two layers thick.

    My lathe will weigh 2,000 pounds and is roughly 70" long and 30" wide. I have been thinking of welding up 4" rectangular tubing with 1/4" thick walls, two cross pieces, flip it and weld on a 1/2" thick plate. Flip it back and using this as a base to set the lathe on so the weight will be spread, and level from there. I am resigned to using my levels to check it every time I want to use it for serious work. This will lift the lathe so the centerline of the spindle will be roughly 48". Not bad. The easy way would be a 2" thick (or more) plate, but this would be hideously expensive.

    If anyone has any suggestions I would welcome them. I see some of the old South Bend adverts showing the lathes on wooden floors, I think it can be done. Maybe. Hopefully.

    I saw this South Bend mounted in a U.S. Navy ship:

    You can see the headstock end is bolt to the deck with two bolts, holding the rest just above the deck, whereas a land-based lathe is bolted at all four corners. Also, note the tailstock, it is free to rotate as the deck twists.

    So my second pic (excuse my MS Paint Skills), is what I came up with. A "T" base that the lathe can sit on being supported at three points.

    I am considering the T-base to be quite flexible between the headstock and tailstock, so taking any twist out of the bed may present challenges. I will have to see once the lathe is here and mounted. I am thinking if I drill the plate, and weld the bolts from the bottom and top to make them very strong, I could level using locknuts on the base.

    If anyone has other ideas, let me know.
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    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

    Better living through chemistry (I'm a chemist)

    You can piddle with the puppies, or run with the wolves...

  3. #23
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    Here is a website that presents machine topics in a way that won't take you down the rabbit hole of good to know but not necesssary info.

    http://quinndunki.com/blondihacks/?p=3147

  4. #24
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    Default Finally Getting My Lathe

    I found a YouTube where a guy shows how to do it with a plumb bob. I got wrapped around the axle about level at first until I watched it. He also mentioned the Navy machines on a rolling and pitching deck. Nothing level about that. Cutting a test piece is where the rubber meets the road. No taper, no problem. Seems reasonable to me and I still check mine that way after a shaker. It doesn’t change.

    End of the day, you’ll be working within 6” of the headstock or close to the tail stock in the steady depending on how long you want to punish yourself doing setup. For the most part and cuts are short. If you’re contouring a barrel, the setup will dictate the taper anyway.

    My .02. Don’t sweat it too much.

  5. #25
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    Copy that guys. I will check them out. It will be at least first week of July when the lathe gets here, I will have time to decide what to put together.
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

    Better living through chemistry (I'm a chemist)

    You can piddle with the puppies, or run with the wolves...

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