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Member postings for John Calton

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

Thread: Zyto lathe problem
12/04/2022 11:20:23

Dear All,

Very many thanks for all your encouraging and helpful suggestions. Each one livened up my day, increased my knowledge and spurred me on to think further about the subject.

Here is what I intend to do and why. First the why.

I'm in the process of moving house, after 38 years, so am rather busy rationalizing my workshops and most of my tools are packed.. Secondly I wish to get the new workshops up and running, before I will feel confident enough to tackle David's idea of a 3mm slotted back plate on which to mount the rack.

My intention is to adopt Hopper's idea and revert the Zyto to its 1920/30's configuration, until I get set up in my new worrkshops. The lathe is in pieces, ready for packing, but I have been able to test the 1920's "adaption" and found that it worked. Because the lathe is small, the ergonomics have not been unduly affected. Once the lathe has been set up and is working, I will post a photo of it in its 1920's configuration, but before that, I shall be avidly reading the posts giving ideas and encouragement, from the experts on this forum.

Very best wishes to all of you helpful engineers,


10/04/2022 18:52:00

Many thanks. I had not thought of that possibility. It will mean though that I'll now have to go out and buy cutting lube fluid, if my idea works!

Best wishes, John.

10/04/2022 18:40:05

Dear Brian, Dave and David,

Very many thanks for replying so rapidly, with ideas that actually awakened the one brain cell I have! David I know what you mean when you talk of close shaves. I have an essential tremor, which means that I have had to take great care, as the tool approaches the chuck. The stress is so great, that I use the "sweat of fear" dripping from my forehead, as a cutting lube.

Seriously though, as I do not have access to a friendly proper engineer, I'm not able to use your super adaptations. However the sheer terror of having to use my lathe without resort to your solutions, must have awoken my single brain cell. This led to the following idea, which I would be grateful if you would post comments/suggestions on.

If the pinion runs correctly along the top of the rack, why not flip the rack over, so that its teeth point upwards and mount it lower it on the bed of the lathe? With careful measuring, drilling and tapping the bed and by using shims to keep the back of the rack level with the flats on the bed that it was bolted to, the rack and pinion should engage as required.?? I've checked and there is plenty of room to mount the rack, with its teeth pointing up, instead of down. My worry is that if this is a solution, why did the manufacturer not use it?

Best wishes, John

10/04/2022 11:40:42

Dear All,

After 60 years I've taken up metal lathe work again and acquired a 3.75" Zyto lathe, which suites my requirements to a tee. Apart from one.

All the lathes that I used long ago moved the saddle and apron towards the tailstock, when I manually turned the the hand wheel on the apron clockwise.

However when I turn the hand wheel clockwise on the Zyto, it moves the saddle towards the headstock, which I'm finding counter intuitive.

The hand wheel is is connected directly to the bottom of a rack mounted along the side of the bed. The movement of the hand wheel pinion works perfectly whilst operating along the top of the rack (when both have been removed from the lathe).

My problem is that I cannot mount the rack upside down on the bed, as the pinon will jam between it and the bed of the lathe. The pinion is has no gearing between it and the handwheel.

I know that this fault is mine and that I cannot see the wood for the trees, because Zyto would not have produced a lathe that is wildly different from all others at the time.

Can anyone help this befuddled old codger?

Best wishes to you all, John

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