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Member postings for Howard Lewis

Here is a list of all the postings Howard Lewis has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Fkesxispeed...what is the back gear for and how to use it
21/05/2022 19:34:13

As NDIY says, single phase motors are not as good as three phase, when it comes to smoothness of rotation..

My lathe has VFD. Back gear is used, infrequently, not for the increased torque that it makes available, but purely for the speed reduction. Compensates for my slow reactions.

(Definitely needed when cutting a 4 mm pitch thread up to an end stop! )

20/05/2022 12:17:11

As Nigel says "horses for Courses"

A lot of the time, I use a Tangential Turning tool with a HSS toolbit. But for anything hard, carbide comes into its own.

given the right speeds and feeds, both will deliver good finish.

A lightweight machine will not give of its best if overloaded. At least will not function well, at worst sustain permanent wear / damage.

Even with a machine with VFD, back gear can be very buseful. for a variety of reasons, even if only slow operator reactions!


Thread: Fix my (new) Lathe
20/05/2022 12:11:17

You cannot remove all clearance, or things will be immovable. There must be some clearance, even if only 0.025 mm to allow movement.

You are starting to fettle a hobby machine to improve the quality that you have bought.

Hobby machines are designed and manufactured to a low cost and affordable price..

They will not produce, certainly long term, to the leval of precision and longevity of an industrial machine. You will not be working the machine for 40 or more hours a week, week in and week out, close to its limits, that an industrial machine is made and expected to withstand.

Quality takes time to produce and control, which is why industrial quality machines are so much more costly.

By all means fine tune the machine, Lots of us make / add improvements. (The number of modifications made to machines make this obvious ), but keep a sense of proportion.


Thread: This trolley/cart could be useful
20/05/2022 11:58:08

In anticipation of (Hopefully the far off day ) when the machines have to be moved out of the workshop, which will, involve climbing a small step and turning corners, bought a sturdy trolley, with castors, from LIDL to supplement my Machine Mart one. Together, they will more than cope with the weight of the Mill and then the lathe when the dreaded time comes.,

Keep an eye open for when the offer comes round again.


Thread: New-style cover finish
20/05/2022 11:50:31

Noticed the high gloss finish.

Won't know just how much more slippy until I start piling late issues on top of the pile.

If they slip, shall have to find some means of restraint.

(That's the least on my problems with Mortons, at the moment. Hopefully things will get sorted soon )


Edited By Howard Lewis on 20/05/2022 11:52:19

Thread: Fkesxispeed...what is the back gear for and how to use it
19/05/2022 12:24:49

As already said, you must disengage the pulley from the Spindle when Back gear is engaged. Otherwise it will lock up, because, effectively, you have two different ratio gears engaged at the same time.

If the Back gear does succeed in overriding the pulley / Shaft, the chances are that both will be damaged..

Since the pulley will be rotating at a different speed from the Spindle, if back Gear is used for any length of time, it may be worth adding a spot of oil to Spindle / Pulley. Just enough to prevent any tendency to siezure.

When back Gear is not in use, the grubscrew will lock the pulley to the Spindle to provide the drive.


Thread: slipping chuck
19/05/2022 12:11:27

Faced with this problem, I would feel inclined to lap the two tapers together, and then follow up with dab of anaerobic, rotating the two against each other to ensure that it is evenly distributed.


Thread: Oil can (again)
19/05/2022 12:08:01

In my experience, the normal Enots oil cans work well, especially ones with "nylon" spouts, but best of all is the Reilang. It is expensive, does not leak, works at almost any angle and forces oil to where it is needed.

Ones supplied with a machine tend to leak, putting it mildly.

As always, you get what you pay for!


Thread: Do they exist?
17/05/2022 09:46:05

YES they do, or at least hybrids.

My Soba wiggler turned out to have a cylindrical probe, 0.100" diameter but a 6 mm ball! (Obviously a cock up )

Until I realised this, errors aplenty. Now, just have to remember whether to allow 0.050" or 0.118"


Thread: Myford ML4 change gear modification
16/05/2022 12:23:42

When I helped a chap to get his ML4 up and running, one of the things that was needed was another 60T gear.

The only one available was from a ML7.

One of the existing gears was mounted on a stud and drill through to act as a jig for drilling the 3/32" hole into the 60T gear, opposite the keyway..

Once this was done, by using 20T gears as drivers, it was possible to arrange a fine feed, 20:60 / 20:65 / 20:60

The 20:65 intermediate Idler ensured that there was no clash between the 20:60 compound meshes..

With the 8 tpi Leadscrew, this gave a mechanical feed rate of about 0.004" per rev. This provides quite a good surface finish on finishing cuts.


Thread: Screw Jack Casting
11/05/2022 11:59:05

One tip.

When machining cast iron, if possible, place a magnet under a sheet of paper, as close as safely possible to the machining point.

Plastic sheet is no good since the hot swarf melts a hole almost at once.

The magnet will attract a lot of the swarf. Sadly not all, it but will make cleaning up easier.


Thread: Code of Conduct
11/05/2022 11:53:29

Am fed up with the PC / "woke" brigade, who seem to search for things at which to take offence.

Wait until they read this!!.

Am presently in discussion with the school onto which we back (Built after we moved in in early in 1973. )

Our new security fence needs to be screened to give privacy to our house and the school.

My wife and I obviously are two paedophiles in their eyes!

Apparently it never occurs to anyone that any of the local residents can go upstairs to view the school grounds!

But the box has been ticked, so they will be happy..


Thread: Advice on Choosing A Mini Lathe
10/05/2022 15:01:37

Ian shows that with care and attention, a reasonable purse can be made from a sow's ear!

And how do you put a price on the satisfaction of having improved and fine tuned the machine?


Thread: Newb to ME and ....well... everything
10/05/2022 14:47:14

Welcome to the Forum.

With a lathe, all manner of projects, repairs and modifications become possible.

If you can find a local model engineering club, do join it, to meet with like minded individuals.

On here, in ME and MEW and at the club, you will find help, encouragement and inspiration.


Thread: Howdy
10/05/2022 14:42:52

Welcome to the Forum, and the VAST fund of knowledge that members possess and are willing to share.

What projects / interests involve you most?

Where are you located?

If not already a member, it may be advantageous to find a local model engineering society and to join.


Thread: Help identifying mystery steady rests - possibly Myford 4" Precision?
10/05/2022 14:27:01

Homer nodded!

It was in pre lockdown days that I helped a newbie to recommission the ML4 that he had bought. The distance added too much enchantment to the view!

But a 4" centre height is too great for one.

It sounds as if the answer is the 4" Myford MF74.

Again, the Forum provides an answer!


Thread: Cutting my first gear
08/05/2022 11:56:48

If it will help to keep the chuck tight on the spindle, rotating the blank for the next tooth in the direction that tightens the chuck, to take out any backlash, MAY help.

It is taken as read that everything else is locked whilst the cut is being taken.

You are doing the right thing by experimenting and gaining experience on spare material, rather than on an expensive, or irreplaceable part! Fortunately, when I found the errors, the material could be replaced, so all in all, it was a useful learning curve.


Thread: Socket set sizes
08/05/2022 11:37:23

Are the sockets too badly rusted for any identification marks to be visible?

Stating the painfully obvious, using the wrong socket to slacken a hexagon fastener, which is very tight, can result in the corners being damaged or removed. The socket might even split!

Depending up on the age of the sockets, if of recent vintage, they might be Metrinch or Flank Drive sockets, (identifiable by the "flats" not being, but curved ).

Metrinch sockets and ring spanners will drive, Whit, AF or Metric fasteners, sometimes where a conventional socket of that type and size will not.

Once you have identified each socket, accurately, it may be worth engraving each one to clarify the size and application


Thread: Help identifying mystery steady rests - possibly Myford 4" Precision?
07/05/2022 15:34:13

The Myford ML1 and 2 have a centre height of 3.125", while the ML3 and 4 are 3.5" centre height, all with solid dovetail beds.

So, at 4" centre height and clamping in the middle on a flat bed, not for not for them.

Try searching through potentials on the Lathes UK website. You might see a LOT of lathes, in the process.


Thread: Advice on Choosing A Mini Lathe
06/05/2022 19:16:19

For years, I hankerd after a lathe, and eventually bought a "Previously owned" Myford ML7.

Because it was lathe that I knew was used by lots of model engineers, and in some industrial tool;rooms.

I had NO idea of the use to which the lathe would be put. other than being confident that it would be a very useful machine.

As I started to use it, I found that more and more jobs could be done on it. But some exposed, in my view limitations, so as I retired I bought a larger Taiwanese lathe, which was even more versatile.

As a bit of an extravagance, I bought, secondhand, a mini lathe. It does not see a lot of use, but there are times that it is used for jobs to prevent breaking down a set up on the gig 'un.. On it's own, it would be an extremely useful machine.

Yes, some Far Eastern lathes need a bit of fine tuning to get the best out of them, but so will a worn old British, American or German machine!.

The vital thing is "Will it do what is required of it"?

If the answer is "Yes", it is fit for purpose.

Especially when yo recall that "Many a good tune can be played on an old fiddle"

A skilled operator can produce good work off an old machine where a novice may fail so to do on a new machine.


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