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Member postings for Thor

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

Thread: Used lathe advice needed on oil and things
30/06/2020 17:25:51

There is several 1340 lathe manuals available online (The Grizzly is the first):




Even if the manual isn't for the Excel Pinnacle, they are all much the same.


Thread: The cost of cheap (Free) materials
22/06/2020 17:10:15

I do as Andrew. Most of the scrap I get for free from a milling, turing and welding shop and they tend to use S355 steel which machines OK. If I find the steel unsuitable I just return it to the skip. Some of the Cast Iron I use come from old disc brakes, it is fine grained and machines well. Certainely not as expensive as ordering online.


Thread: White wheel for bench grinder ?
17/06/2020 17:24:22

Hi Lee,

I use a white grinding wheel on my bench grinder for grinding HSS tools, this works well. For grinding carbide slot drills I use a diamond wheel in my home made Tool & Cutter Grinder, for me that worked better than a green wheel.


Thread: Best places to buy metal for machining
16/06/2020 14:30:11

I have used M-Machine for both free-cutting steel and copper alloys and I am very satisfied.


Thread: Mill
13/06/2020 09:55:25

Hi Danny,

A Iain says, what do you want to make. If you don't want to look around for a second hand British made milling machine, that leaves mainly Chinese machines or may be a Wabeco if you have the money. A Chinese milling machine like the WM18 will be considerably cheaper and leave you money to buy some tooling like a milling chuck, clamping set and a vise. A Sieg SX3 will be about the same price. If these are to small may be this will do.


Thread: Travelling microsteady
10/06/2020 05:37:28
Posted by Hopper on 09/06/2020 23:02:25:

Very neat. Your own design or are there drawings somewhere?

There was a thread on a box tool or roller box on this forum, see here. Stew had a thread of a similar tool on MEM.


Thread: Homemade cutting fluid
09/06/2020 10:35:22

Hi Jacob,

I usually don't use cutting fluid when using carbide tipped tools, may be except when cutting hard steels. For HSS tools I often use a thin plain "sewing machine" oil applied with a small brush.


Thread: Cutting Oil
09/06/2020 05:40:52

Hi David,

There was a discussion on another forum, see here and here, also some info here . I use cutting oil when machining steel and my experience is that the cutting oil works, CI and brass are machined dry.


Thread: choosing a lathe
08/06/2020 05:30:07
Posted by David Harvey 3 on 07/06/2020 20:43:31:

Thanks for all the replies a lot of sound advice, I live in a old house with a small garage attached I think it must have been built for a Morris minor or something that size, I already have lots of normal tools so space is tight but its heated.At the end of the day think I will go with a new machine and as you say get the biggest one I can afford the max length of lathe I can fit in after rejigging everything is 4 feet, second hand lathes over here are rarer than rocking horse poo if I bought second in across the water I would have to take owners word on condition plus the hassle of them putting it on a pallet god knows the cost of transport to the west of Ireland. You all seem a nice bunch of willing people.

Ps will let you know what I choose.

The Warco 240 (and 250) and similar lathes from other dealers should fit within the 4 feet you have available. I have a somewhat larger 290 Chinese lathe that I have had for many years, and I have had no problems so far.


Edited By Thor on 08/06/2020 05:30:30

07/06/2020 15:43:04

Hi David,

As Brian says, get the biggest lathe you can afford and find room for in your workshop. The Warco WM240 VariSpeed comes with variable speed and may be a bit higher priced than your budget. The WM240B comes with a belt drive and is considerably cheaper so you can buy some tools for the lathe like a drill chuck, a ball bearing live centre and some cutting tools.


Thread: Collets: 2MT direct or ER?
06/06/2020 10:38:09
Posted by Luke Mitchell on 05/06/2020 19:43:2

Speaking of Chinese tooling, there are fairly complete ER32 collet sets available for sub-£100. Are those suggesting the collet route will be expensive of the opinion that these are not trustworthy?

I bought a cheap Chinese ER32 collet chuck (with MT3 shank) and a few collets from Chester several years ago and the collet chuck had a run out less than 0.01mm on the inner cone. The collets had a bit more run out than the Vertex ones I bought later from another supplier. So you may be lucky and get a good one. I didn't buy a collet set, just the collets I have needed for my various projects. Both the chuck with MT 3 shank and the ER 32 chuck on the lathe are used often, I wouldn't be without them.


05/06/2020 17:40:58

Hi Luke,

I would recommend an ER chuck that mounts on a backplate - something like this. I made an ER 32 chuck that mounts on the spindle of my small lathe, ER 32 because I already had some ER 32 collets. The chuck can take long bars up to 20mm dia. and has good repeatability. With an ER chuck that mounts on a backplate you can easily move the chuck to another lather if you decide to upgrade the ML4.


Thread: Boxford lathe advice
05/06/2020 11:46:06

Hi Lucas,

As Hopper says, go for a 4-pole motor (just under 1500 rpm). Even if you only have single phase supply in your workshop, even a cheap inverter can deliver 3-phase 240V to the motor from a single phase supply. Your Boxford looks very nice.


PS. I see you tried to post the image of your lathe on this forum, it should work if you save the photo as a jpg in imgur.

Edited By Thor on 05/06/2020 11:58:26

05/06/2020 07:05:47

Hi Lucas,

Welcome to the forum. The VSL version of Boxford lathes had a 1hp motor IIRC, I assume you have checked out the site? A new motor - preferably 3-phase with inverter - shouldn't be too expensive. A tape measure should give you an indication of the belt length. V-belt dimensions can be found here.


Thread: Silver Soldering LG2
05/06/2020 05:36:20

Hi Andrew,

I recently used LG2 to fabricate a cylinder for a mill type steam engine. The portblock was silver soldered (brazed) to the cylinder. I experienced no problems, but I have not yet tried it on steam, only compressed air. This page says it is Good for brazing.


Thread: Another ER32 chuck question..
04/06/2020 09:46:21

Hi John,

Several years ago I bought a Chinese MT 3 ER-32 chuck that I can use both on my small lathe and in the milling machine. The run out on the inner taper of the ER part of mine is slightly less than 0.01mm, so the run out on your chuck is bad and should be returned.


Thread: Machines and equipment sourcing chronology...
02/06/2020 05:43:36
Posted by martin perman on 01/06/2020 18:48:42:

Just out of curiousity what are the benefits of a rear tool post, I would have to extend my cross slide as it wouldnt be long enough and I couldnt use the power feed unless I could turn towards the tailstock.

Martin P

Edited By martin perman on 01/06/2020 18:49:18

I have a rear tool-post on my 290 lathe that I use for an inverted parting off tool. The cross-slide is long enough to accommodate a rear tool post.
I also use it for a chamfering tool. The rear parting off tools work well, and it is handy to have the tool ready, just wind the corss-slide forwards.


01/06/2020 10:38:26

Hi Chris,

As you I started with a lathe and made a vertical slide so I could do some simple milling operations. I eventually upgraded to a Mini Mill that was a huge improvement over the vertical milling slide. Later I made a motorized hacksaw as I had a surplus small electric motor. Whether you need the bandsaw before the milling machine I guess only you can decide that. Depends on what projects you plan to do, I needed a milling machine more than a motorized hacksaw so I bought a milling machine.


Thread: New Lathe - cleaning the oil off
29/05/2020 05:29:03

Hi Ace,

Congratulations with your new lathe.
As Paul, I have used kerosene (paraffin) or lamp-oil that doesn't smell as much, and an old credit card to scrape off the protective grease. Oil well afterwards.


Thread: I have a Fobco Universal MT, can it be used for milling?
28/05/2020 18:33:48

Hi Caspar,

I have tried using a drill for light milling jobs. The spindle nose on my drill was threaded and I happened to have a few Myford MT 2 collets, so I made a suitable nut and used the Myford collets to hold small milling cutters. Up to 6mm IIRC. It worked but when I later got a Sieg X2 Mini Mill I stopped using the drill for milling, I found that the X2 was far better at milling jobs.


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