Author Topic: Building a New Lathe  (Read 163110 times)

Offline trapper

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #350 on: July 29, 2015, 11:43:28 AM »
Hi,if you lived in England l would offer you this machine its rated highly in America but ignored in this country,every bit as good as the Boxford but at Auction they make peanuts whilst the Boxfords make fortunes.I was told by my American friends that these are a joy to be worked on, and they are a very smooth cutting lathe highly underated but l think its simply lack of knowledge about this machine.Its a 10ins Leblond Regal aged 72yrs old gears are imaculate and out live any owner

Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #351 on: July 29, 2015, 03:22:23 PM »
HI Trapper, thanks for the thought! Yes indeed LeBlond's are highly rated over here. I once secured a large newer LeBlondfor the firm I worked for and transported it in a big rental truck during a massive snowstorm from Rochester, NY to Vermont. Full day and evening there and back -- quite a ride!!

Of course I'm enjoying building my own lathe by now -- taking a break from it during the summer, but will pick it back up when the weather cools. Tons to do right now outdoors.

Thanks for the thought though, and it certainly would be a nice acquisition! :thumbup: :beer:
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline trapper

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #352 on: July 30, 2015, 09:15:54 AM »
l look forward to your progress and the finished results a nice and interesting project, could end up with a nice machine to suit your needs

Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #353 on: July 30, 2015, 09:06:09 PM »
I'm really looking forward to it. And I have an interesting (I think) take on a milling attachment for this one, different than anything I've seen. The carriage has been laid out wth this in mind. Everything has been thought about with the idea of making my tiny nearby winter shop sufficient to do reasonable size engine work on a lathe/milling combo this small. Stiffness and rigidity in a small homemade lathe have been a priority.
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline Manxmodder

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #354 on: July 31, 2015, 10:03:47 AM »
agree with you,trapper,LeBlond lathes are very much worthy of consideration as a workshop lathe.

Steve,I am also looking forward to you picking up with the lathe build project,it's been a great thread to follow so far.....OZ.
Helixes aren't always downward spirals,sometimes they're screwed up

Offline trapper

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #355 on: July 31, 2015, 02:30:35 PM »
The way some people on here can improve/rebuild things a Leblonde could be turned into a rolls royce of a lathe,especially at the prices that they can be bought-there was one for sale last year and l felt really sorry for the guy selling it.It was in a family buisness and they had it for 50yrs(rarely used) it was the next size up from mine 14ins(7ins billet)He was buying a colchester to go in the space so he had it on at 350 plenty of assesories and it was in really nice looked after condition still had the original paint on and even that looked good,I t didnt sell,relisted didnt sell again,told me if it didnt sell second time he knew someone who wanted it for free,So one mans loss another mans gain,he got it for nothing-and l can tell you this he has got a lovely lathe,Mine cuts ally and stainless without effort and the excellent finish is automatic,at its best l had a coolant system on,an inverter,a dro,these are now on my other lathe and the Leblond has its original single phase motor back on.As everyone knows its much better 3phase.These machines become available now and then at give away prices and anyone looking for a well made lathe couldnt go wrong with one-ideal if you havnt got a fortune to spend

Offline Homebrewer

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #356 on: June 22, 2017, 01:32:30 PM »
I'm new around here but last night I read every page of this build log.  I was curious if you were able to finish this lathe up?

Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #357 on: June 22, 2017, 07:49:47 PM »
No, sorry, but maybe after I clear up some necessary projects around the house i can come back to it. The interest is definitely coming back for machine work. It had waned for awhile. Reading here is helping rekindle it. Thanks for asking! :beer:
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline Neubert1975

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #358 on: June 26, 2017, 04:24:04 AM »
2 time reading this build, and still being impressed at the work you do  :thumbup:
some years back i went down the diy route my self, building a milling machine, though in my search for a cross slide table, i found a cheap machine and purchased that, now where i am on number 2 machine, i still regred that i dident finished the diy version, since it actualy was better than what i have now (lux drimill ry20)
who know, maby some day i will build one again  :zap:

Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #359 on: June 26, 2017, 07:48:08 AM »
I hope you will Neubert, and show us pics, while you do!

I've had the same experience in the past of buying a machine and then realizing the disappointment of no longer needing to make one.

I know I will finish this lathe, when I can, and I originally intended to make it a halfway decent mill of it, too. I planned to sell some of those other machines when this one proved out.

There's a big difference for me in satisfaction in using a tool I built, and having it just what I need, the way I imagined it. The Gingery lathe and attachments were like that. This one was designed to be a much more rigid machine, but not much larger in footprint.

I do own a 12" x 36" Craftsman lathe, but I don't need the 36" length. This machine has the same ways dimensions and rigidity as that one, but will be sized closer to the Gingery in footprint. So I hope it will be capable of some reasonable milling, and solid turning without as much concern over chatter.
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #360 on: June 27, 2017, 09:26:42 AM »
Well, funny, it's been exactly 2 years to the day since I stopped working on the lathe. Re-reading this thread and you guys' comments (and a rainy day) have got me headed out to the tiny shop to clear off space around the old project. I'll take a look at what I've got, and think about the next step I need to take in finishing it.  If I devote a half hour or so out of the day or more when things are slow, maybe we can get this lathe up and cutting this summer.

Anyway, off to do shop cleanup......  :beer:
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline NormanV

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #361 on: June 27, 2017, 10:24:54 AM »
 :D
Waiting with anticipation!

Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #362 on: June 27, 2017, 06:55:54 PM »
Thanks Norman! :beer:

I cleared off the lathe's bench in the tiny shop, but first had to work on the bench. Several drawers I needed to put away tools and other odds and ends in were sticking.

So I found my block plane, but found it was dull. So I went back to the house to get my Japanese waterstone, but found its surface clogged from too many kitchen knife sharpenings. So I went back to the shop for a piece of 80 grit wet or dry sandpaper, and cleared the grain and straightened the stone on a flat surface. Then I sharpened the plane. Then I went to work on the sticking drawers.

Once they slid okay, I decided to make drawer handles (long overdue), so I did that (pic in the Tiny Shop thread). And had a lot more joy putting things away.

I finally dusted off the bench under the lathe, and swept out the shop floor. All was in order, finally!

So, where was I last on the lathe? What was going to be my next step? Working without drawing plans has its disadvantages!

Looking at the headstock, my best guess was that I would have made a pattern and cast the headstock cap. But I'm not ready to resume casting yet -- sand is all dried out, and all the casting stuff needs to be organized.

So I think I will start with machining the headstock base, where it will slide on the ways. After machining I'll need to make a retaining plate, a gib, and drill and tap for gib screws. The headstock will slide on the ways just like the tailstock. This will facilitate boring it for the bearings. I'll need to make the headstock cap and fasten that to the base with a few shims in place for future adjustment before boring

After boring, it will be fixed in place permanently with clamps and through bolts at the end of the lathe.

I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
www.sredmond.com

Offline Homebrewer

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #363 on: June 27, 2017, 10:46:44 PM »
Hey, you needed an excuse to go organize the shop, right?!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk


Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #364 on: June 28, 2017, 07:07:31 PM »
Homebrewer, this is true! :dremel:

Today we finally cut metal. I milled the bottom of the headstock where it slides and the rectangular bosses that will bear against the inside of the ways while boring for the spindle bearings. There were a lot of things to think about -- how much space needed for a gib, whether the headstock was centered and at the right height relative to the tailstock and ways, whether there was clearance for the cross slide shears, whether the bosses had enough depth, etc.

But we managed to get through it all. One help was sighting through the tailstock bore at the far end. The reduced size hole at the hand wheel end acted like a scope, and helped me check centering. All in all a satisfying hour of messing about with metal, between mowing sessions with the tractor. Rain predicted for the next few days, so maybe more time for the lathe.



Trial fit in place:

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:47:09 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #365 on: June 29, 2017, 09:13:44 PM »
Today I milled to finished depth the headstock slide bosses, and marked them out for the gib screws. I drilled to suit a 10-24 tap.

The holes were a little tricky to drill because the headstock is tapered towards the top, so I had to block it square. My drill table in the tiny shop is very small, so no way to clamp the headstock down. I just had to hold it in position and hope for the best. Worked out well, though.

Zinc alloys tap very nicely. I used a little kerosene as a tapping fluid, and the holes were finished in short order. I had to shorten some stainless socket head cap screws so they would fit between the slide bosses. And I had to relieve the casting a tiny amount to clear the screw heads, using my electric die grinder. But it all worked out.



Next I looked for some steel to make the bottom slide retainer plate. An old rusty piece of flame cut metal was all I had of large enough size and appropriate thickness so I had to grind off the dirt and rust, band saw it to rough size and mill it all over. After filing It will be drilled and screwed to the 4 headstock slide bosses. The screws will just clear the gib screw holes -- the latter were offset to the outside of the bosses for that reason. You can see the offset in the photo, above.

Below is a photo showing a scrap section of the 3/8" way material sandwiched in position between the headstock and the new slide retainer plate. The bosses were milled 3 thousandths lower than the way thickness, so that some 1 thou brass shims can be inserted to adjust for a close sliding fit.

I'm undecided on whether to actually make gibs. Since the headstock will only be sliding temporarily for the spindle boring operation, I'm thinking that the gib screws may be all that's needed. The headstock can be adjusted now to slide on the ways without play, and quite freely, with just the gib screws. I'll think about it.

Anyway here's a pic of the assembly as it stands now:



« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:48:04 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #366 on: July 01, 2017, 11:00:33 PM »
Drilled and tapped for the plate, made up the shims and mounted the headstock on the ways. It fits without play, yet slides nicely along the full length.

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:48:33 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #367 on: July 01, 2017, 11:29:51 PM »
This afternoon I had some time to work on the lathe during a thunderstorm. I decided it was time to mount the leadscrew bearings. This meant drilling and tapping the lathe bed, which is 3/4" thick hot rolled steel.

Tapping the first hole:

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:48:55 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #368 on: July 01, 2017, 11:35:11 PM »
After tapping all the way through -- very slow going with this tough steel and working horizontally -- I mounted the cast bearing, which I'd drilled earlier for mounting holes and an oil hole. I locked the carriage to the leadscrew, as I had earlier when marking the first hole position. I used a transfer punch to mark the second hole;

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:49:53 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #369 on: July 01, 2017, 11:41:49 PM »
Tjen it was a matter of step drilling for the other hole first with a 1/8" spotting drill, and later with the tapping drill, and then tapping again. I took it all slowly, no rush, to make sure all was in alignment, and especially avoiding breaking the tap. Sometimes it took only an eighth of a turn before I felt it was too tight and had to back out and clear it.

Spot drilling:

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:50:19 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #370 on: July 01, 2017, 11:44:56 PM »
Finally the bearing could be mounted.

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:50:44 PM by vtsteam »
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Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #371 on: July 01, 2017, 11:51:08 PM »
The front bearing mount was much easier, as it goes into an aluminum extension that serves as a cover and heatsink for the internally mounted stepper motor, which will drive the leadscrew.

Finally the leadscrew was fully mounted in the bearings.

As a check, the carriage slid along the ways without contacting the half nut, while it was open. And closing it locked it in good alignment with the leadscrew. There was no need to slot the bearing screw holes for adjustment. I'd measured carefully with everything clamped in place before starting to drill the mounts. I'd hoped that's how it would work out, and it did.

Both bearings mounted:

« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 02:51:26 PM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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Offline tom osselton

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #372 on: July 02, 2017, 12:06:40 AM »
Looking good! :thumbup:

Offline PekkaNF

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #373 on: July 02, 2017, 04:19:38 AM »
I must say that I enjoy watching this. Like the work and rationale. many just show what is done, without telling the reason or thought process.

The head stock adjustment provision. Not sure if I got it right. Are you boring it in situ or planning to mount it somewhere middle for boring through? Planning to use same size shimms all over, during boring?

Pekka

Offline vtsteam

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Re: Building a New Lathe
« Reply #374 on: July 02, 2017, 09:22:29 AM »
Thanks Tom, Pekka!

Pekka the headstock will only move for a short time while being bored, after that it will be slid to its final position and bolted in place.

The shims only adjust the tightness on the ways while sliding. Not the headstock height. They are located under the slide retaining plate where it is screwed on.

The shims in the headstock are probably unnecessary, assuming you are exact in getting a perfect sliding fit when surfacing the "legs" (bosses?) at the bottom of the headstock. Not too sticky a sliding fit, and not too loose. But I'm used to doing it this way, and it is a simpler matter to make the legs a few thou short, and then pad back to a perfect fit on the ways thickness with shims. (remember also that the ways thickness was actually determined by scraping -- not a generic .375" any more)

For regularly sliding lathe parts (like the carriage)  the shims also serve the purpose of allowing you to adjust for wear over the lifetime of the lathe. With one thousandth of an inch brass shims, you can remove one at a time to adjust out wear the same amount. With four separate shims at corners, like I have on this lathe, you can also adjust one corner at a time to remove a small amount of rocking if you have any..

But again, this is all unnecessary for the headstock, as it won't wear over time. Just my habit, and very simple to cut the legs a little short, and pad back to a good fit with shims.

Just a word on why the headstock is made to slide. When boring, I will use the tailstock as a boring bar holder. It will be fixed in place. I will temporarily mount a pulley back there and use the tailstock as a headstock.

The real headstock will be attached with a nut to the leadscrew and move while boring.

By doing it this way, the tailstock and headstock will end up with concentric bores. And also the bore will be exactly parallel with the ways, since the direction of movement is constrained by sliding along those ways. Since I started out with a pre-existing finished tailstock casting, I am operating in the reverse of the normal procedure. Which would be boring a tailstock using a headstock to hold the boring bar.

When boring the spindle location by sliding the headstock over the ways, even if the boring bar is slightly canted, the bore will be parallel to the ways. Canting would just introduce a very slight elliptical shaped hole, but still exactly parallel to the ways. Since I will be very careful to align the boring bar first, any elliptical error will be negligible. It would take a fairly big and obvious angle to make a problematic degree of ellipse. If you do the math for a couple degrees off, it still produces a very small circular error.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2017, 10:00:12 AM by vtsteam »
I love it when a Plan B comes together!
Steve
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