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Member postings for Lathejack

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

Thread: Boring bar toolpost.
03/11/2019 10:11:13

Well there lies a possible snag, I had it in my head that the ratio was 5:1 so this boring bar would be right on that limit.

I had been looking for a bar of 40-50mm diameter, but all the used ones I have looked at so far have been worn away in the area below the cutting tip.

While the bigger the better for this job is true, it doesn't require going as far as a 3" bar. The 1330 lathe is heavily built and more than up to the job of holding and machining the light alloy cylinders bore out by 0.5mm, once I have made a suitable holding fixture.

Edited By Lathejack on 03/11/2019 10:15:03

01/11/2019 19:52:22

For quite some time I have been meaning to make a toolpost to take a large boring bar, to be used in place of the topslide and its toolpost for a far more ridgid setup.

I finally completed one during the past couple of weeks, starting with a block of 80mm square black bar for the body, and some 15mm thick steel plate for the base. The body and the base were both machined on all faces then dowelled and bolted together. The hefty lump was then bolted to the lathes tee slotted crosslide and the bore for the boring bar was first drilled and then finished with a between centres boring bar gripped in the lathe chuck.


...............The base is secured to the body with five high tensile M8 cap screws, plus two dowels. A key is also fitted to locate in the tee slotted crosslide. The lathe is a Warco 1330 but the topslide is a Myford 280 item that I modified to fit several years ago.

image.jpg...............The completed toolpost after slitting one side and fitting three pinch bolts to clamp the boring bar. I was originally going to use a slitting saw in the mill but in the end I used my 7x12 bandsaw. The boring bar will be used to bore the cylinder on my BSA B50.image.jpg..........image.jpgimage.jpg

Edited By Lathejack on 01/11/2019 19:54:40

Edited By Lathejack on 01/11/2019 19:56:40

Thread: What Did You Do Today 2019
27/08/2019 22:50:22

We have been making good progress at work with the restoration of the Burrell engine. Here is the fully restored crankshaft complete with eccentrics and a fresh paint job. I remachined the main and big end journals on our old Churchill lathe a while ago.

image.jpg...............I also remachined the original big end and small end bearings, along with the very hard steel gudgeon pin.image.jpg.................The crank being carefully lowered into position.image.jpg................The engine was treated to a full set of newly manufactured gears for the steering.

image.jpg.................Plus a full set of new gears for the drive train from the crank to the rear axle. The new gears were manufactured by Bell Gears of Sheffield. The large gear on the new rear axle is a new casting for which new patterns had to be made.image.jpg................The gear cover refitted, a chap called Tony has been doing all the relining, and Kevin Grey retubed the boiler. Tomorrow we will be having a steam up and will be taking it for a test ride through the village. It's not a bad day job really!


23/08/2019 21:40:27

FullaFlava, that's a very nice little globe valve, is it sat on the bed of a Hardinge lathe?

Thread: Backplate debacle
23/08/2019 21:17:58

Yes I agree, I would leave your backplate as it is Martin, there is nothing wrong with it at all. I have fitted several new chucks of different types over the years, and a few of them were new TOS three jaw chucks that always needed an undersized register machining on the new backplate to get rid of the 1 1/2 to 2 thou runout in the chuck when fitted to a firm fitting register.

Thread: My new lathe a Warco 918
05/07/2019 12:49:48

I have always had a soft spot for the Far Eastern made 918 and 920 lathes, they have been produced for many years and offered by many suppliers with some examples being quite well made. Early version were made in Taiwan, but I'm not sure if yours at 21 years old is made in Taiwan or China.

The 918 was based on the earlier Austrian made versions of the Emco Compact 8 lathe, in Emco language Compact means basic. So when I was a lad I was always impressed with the 918's addition of a Norton type quick change screwcutting gearbox with 9 feed rates with a row of 9 little cup oilers sat on top.

Plus the 918 also has a longitudinal power feed built into the apron, so you can quickly flick from a fine feed to a thread pitch and back again, and only need to engage the leadscrew thread for screw cutting.

Edited By Lathejack on 05/07/2019 12:50:44

Edited By Lathejack on 05/07/2019 12:51:44

Edited By Lathejack on 05/07/2019 12:53:23

Thread: Myford vmf style (KF-VO-A2F)
05/06/2019 09:50:15

Even if it doesn't have the factory fitted gearbox type power feed it is still probably made in Taiwan. Only the model with the ram mounted head had the table power feed on early versions.

Anyway, they are all good machines and I have seen several for sale over the years, but they were always a bit too far away for me. I would have liked one to replace my smaller VMC that I have had for 20 years.

Edited By Lathejack on 05/06/2019 09:54:14

Edited By Lathejack on 05/06/2019 09:55:00

04/06/2019 21:20:56


Edited By Lathejack on 04/06/2019 21:26:05

04/06/2019 21:20:55

The early Taiwanese made trio of Warco turret milling machines of the 1980's are very good, they are the same as the three Myford machines, the VMC, VME and VMF.

The castings on these early machines are quite substantial, with very wide saddles, deep knee castings and broad columns. They had a quality fit and feel, with a nice scraped finish on the exposed guideways of the column and the top of the knee.

The later versions of these three mills sold by Warco used rather spindlier castings, I have one of them, and although they are still good machines they are just not quite as good as the earlier ones.

So if the Warco machine you have been offered is in good condition then they are certainly worth buying. The 1986 Warco version of the Myford VMF should also have the factory fitted gearbox type power feed for the table which was not fitted on later examples.

Thread: Smart & Brown Model A
17/05/2019 18:48:13

S&B produced some MK 2 Model A lathes built onto the MK1 cast iron cabinate, which is what my machine is. The later MK2 cabinate has all the controls mounted higher up, so you don't have to keep stooping down to adjust anything.

The old flat belt to the spindle on my Model A hasn't given any trouble, it is smooth and quiet. The reason a flat belt was used by S&B was to give a smooth drive from the motor and gearbox mounted in the bottom of the cabinet, without transmitting any vibration to the headstock spindle. That, along with the adjustable plain spindle bearings should give a fine finish on the workpiece.

17/05/2019 10:47:37

I own a Model A that I've had for years, a great machine. Being a toolroom lathe it is built like a tank and is rock solid.

I think mine is 1957 vintage, and shows no signs of wear at all. It is 4 1/2 inches centre hight but will swing about 9 1/2 inches. The width of the bed at 9 1/2 inches is more than twice the centre hight. When the crosslide is wound back far enough to machine at the maximum swing the cutting tool is still sat within the width of the bed, not overhanging the edge of the bed, so it cuts beautifully without trying to flex the saddle or twist the bed. So they are really nice machines to use if they are not badly worn.

The cabinet is made from cast iron which also adds to the rigidity of the lathe. If the capacity of 9 inch swing by I think 20 between centres is enough then they are great for the home workshop, but being a proper toolroom lathe they are a bit heavier and little larger than some general purpose workshop lathes of the same capacity.

Thread: Chinese Lathes
08/05/2019 09:50:48

Well despite having serious faults with my Chinese lathe purchased new around 15 years ago, I really like Chinese lathes. Thank heavens they bother to make all the lathes and other equipment they do, we can now all afford to have a dabble in machine tools, and with all new stuff as well. They make a machine for all circumstances, so if you live in a flat on a tight budget there is a lathe and mill to suit you...great!

Ok, there may still be some faulty or shoddy stuff turning up now and again, but overall I think it's mostly pretty good gear that does its job.

 My Chinese lathe and Taiwanese milling machine now blend in nicely with the British machinery I have in my workshop, all doing what they are supposed to in perfect harmony. 

Edited By Lathejack on 08/05/2019 09:54:01

Thread: Warco lathe Users
06/05/2019 22:30:20

I also own an Imperial Warco 1330 lathe, I've had it for about 15 years. A heavily built and quiet smooth running machine, particularly since fitting a three phase motor.

I did some thread cutting on it last week, 16 TPI & 10 TPI in EN16 Steel bar, no problems at all.


Thread: Lathe Mill Combo setup
03/05/2019 15:36:00

I remember this same machine being offered here in the UK by Chester Machine Tools about 20 years ago or more. It isn't a clone of the Emco Super 11, although the Far East do make a lathe closely based on the Super 11 which is listed as the South Bend Heavy 10 on the Grizzly website.

Chester Machine Tools called their version of Owens machine the Champion lathe, and I think the lathe on its own was around £600 back then if I remember correctly. The milling head is the same as that on Chesters old Champion milling machine with a 4 speed belt drive, round column and a tilting head operated by a gear and cranking handle. I can recall visiting a Model Engineering Exibition all those years ago, at Donnington I think, and Chester had the lathe on display fitted with the Champion milling head just like Owens.

I remember the lathe is a little unusual in having a single vee and flat guideway shared by the saddle and tailstock, and the deep bed casting is the same depth from end to end with no space or reduction in depth between the mounting feet, so it should be quite ridged for its size.

Thread: Alloy BSA M/C fork slider wear? bush material.
17/04/2019 21:09:52

I know it's been about two and a half years since Gavin started this thread, and since his last post on this site I think, but I have recently been doing the very job that Gavin was asking about.

The Alluminium Alloy fork legs on my 1971 BSA B50 Victor 500 were also worn around the top of the internal bore, this caused a sloppy rattly fit of the fork stanchion when in the fully extended position. So I set them up in my Chinese 13x30 lathe using the fixed steady on the machined surface at the top of the leg.



...............I made a fixture to securely hold the legs via the studs at the bottom, the fixture locates in the counter bored hole at the bottom of the leg and centralises the internal bore when gripped in a three jaw chuck or collet, or rather it should do. But the holes in the bottom of the legs, which is counter bored both sides and used for securing the damper rods, were not central to the internal bore of the legs so the four jaw independent chuck had to be used to get the bore running true at the bottom of the leg.image.jpg.


................A new stanchion was used inside the leg to get the leg running true internaly at the bottom.image.jpg.


................Finaly got the top of the legs bored out and the 50mm long bronze bush Loctited in place. The bush is then bored in situ to a very close sliding fit with the new stanchions, the bush wall thickness is just 0.75mm when finished.image.jpgimage.jpgimage.jpg



.................The new pattern stanchions have a superb finely ground chrome finish, far superior to the relatively rough turned finish of the genuine original stanchions. They are now a smooth rattle free sliding fit in the legs without any slop.image.jpg



.................This is the bike they are for, it is still undergoing restoration at the moment.image.jpg

Edited By Lathejack on 17/04/2019 21:11:27

Edited By Lathejack on 17/04/2019 21:14:05

Thread: Smart and brown lathe
15/04/2019 22:38:04

........Here's mine in a similar shade of green to yours Martin.image.jpg

15/04/2019 13:09:10

I have a Smart and Brown Model A Toolroom lathe that I have had for over 18 years, it was originally suplied to the Atomic Energy Authority so it probably glows in the dark.

It's rock solid, built like a tank with large vee and flat guideways with a bed the width of a cricket pitch, well almost.

Thread: Warco vmc chester 626 lubrication
08/04/2019 20:18:00

I've owned my Warco VMC for over 20 years, although it is a Taiwanese made version the design is pretty much the same as the current Chinese made examples. Years ago the spindle bearing grease in mine also leaked out on a very hot day. The workshop it was in had a steel roof and the temperature inside was stifling and the grease just flowed out.

The circular cover on the bottom of the quill does not contain an oil seal, it just fits with a small gap around the spindle. When I removed the cover to repack the bottom bearing with grease I machined the cover to accept a felt seal. A light grip of the seal on the spindle is required, if it's a little tight a lot of heat is generated when running high up the speed range.

Thread: Soba rotary table
15/03/2019 20:20:47

I bought this 150mm Vertex Rotary Table new just over 15 years ago, the TOS chuck with mounting plate that I made is fitted most of the time.

This older version of the Vertex table has a hardened removable sleeve in the centre that is bored 2MT. The table also rotates in a radial needle roller bearing. The original factory fitted bearing shown was a German made item. It also has a needle roller thrust bearing under the base casting.

The radial needle roller bearing had to be replaced a few years after purchase because the factory applied grease had dried solid and jammed up the bearing. The outer race was forced to rotate in the housing of the base casting, it still ran smoothly and was only discovered when the table was stripped for a clean and lube up.


................. My Rotary Table hand wheel tightens or binds a little through part of every revolution. This was found to be caused by the graduated collars front face being machined slightly out of square with its bore, the mounting bracket also has the same fault. If the two faces are very close or touching it causes the intermittent binding, which feels like a more serious internal fault with the meshing gears. Back the collar off a little and the table is superbly smooth. It may be worth checking this first if you have a table that binds in a similar manner.

Other than those two snags it is very well made and well with the £130-£150 it cost back then.


Edited By Lathejack on 15/03/2019 20:23:00

Thread: Myford Vm-f
09/02/2019 13:50:52

It might be worth taking a closer look at the joint between the column and the cast iron stand of the VMF mill, this uses the same column and cast iron stand as the VME.

Although there is no visible external joint I suspect that the column is bolted to the cast iron stand using bolts on the iside of the stand that pass up into threaded lugs on the iside of the column. The castings have filler on the outside before being painted and the joint line is covered and blended in with filler and paint, so it does appear as a one piece casting. The column may have a steel cover on the back face that hides a large access hole, through which the bolts can be seen.

The vertical dovetails machined on the front face of the column terminate very close to the top of the iron stand. I can't see how the dovetails could be machined or ground that close unless they were separate items. I have a VMC mill, and although it has a fabricated sheet steel stand it does have a large cast iron base that is bolted to the base of the column using bolts that pass up through the inside of the base casting and into the column. This also has vertical dovetails on the front face of the column that are very close to the iron base casting. The joint is invisible due to the filler and paint applied at the factory.

If the column is bolted I would still try to avoid separating it for transportation if possible. Removing it would also make a bit of a mess of the filler and paint around the joint. The VMF is a really nice machine, they have a quality fit and feel, as do the VME and VMC.

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