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Rotary Table Quest

Finding one

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Howard Lewis24/11/2020 16:00:42
4177 forum posts
3 photos

Haven't checked how high the table is, when in the Horizontal mode.

When I checked my Vertex HV6, with the table Vertical, the centre height was exactly 4 inches from the table of the mill.

It is almost always used with Division Plates, and with a Tailstock to provide support for gear cutting.

My Tailstock centre is hardened. With a 2MT blank arbor, suitably bored, the RT and the Tailstock can be aligned with regard to the Tee slots in the Mill table, and the Tailstock centre aligned in the vertical plane.


Pete.25/11/2020 00:05:55
338 forum posts
47 photos
Posted by JasonB on 24/11/2020 06:54:28:

It's not so much the low file that matters on a small machine, it's the axis height above the table when mounted vertically and being able to get to the work without the spindle and/or head hitting the R/T.

Do Hoffman and the like do dividing plates as many hobby users what those for use with the R/T rather than the additional cost of a dividing head that most commercial workshops would have had?

They do dividing plates, but they are horizontal only, I'm not trying to sell him a Hofmann rotary table, just pointing out the second hand market often has better buys, even smaller 6" RT's of a more industrial design can be found cheaper than new hobby equipment, if hobby gear is out of stock, no harm in looking at what's available on the used market?

JasonB25/11/2020 07:09:47
19603 forum posts
2150 photos
1 articles

Nothing against S/H just making the OP aware that most of the secondhand offerings are either Far eastern H/V types or industrial horizontal only ( what e-bay showed anyway). Chances of being able to find a set of plates for an old out of production R/T will be slim as probably been separated years ago and then if you also need to use it vertically you will have to hope you can fit it onto a small mill with angle plates etc. or buy another that can be mounted vertically.

Industry probably got by with horizontal tables as they no doubt had a universal or horizontal machine in the shop that could get to the sides of the work and always easier to mount work on a flat surface anyway. The small benchtop machine user has to do it all with the vertical spindle so needs a compact R/T that can be used in both planes and even mounted at an angle as I have had to do in the past..

Michael Gilligan25/11/2020 10:23:40
17075 forum posts
762 photos

Not wishing to be argumentative ... just mentioning another approach:

The lathe can provide an excellent alternative to mounting a rotary table ‘vertically’

[i.e. with its rotational axis horizontal]

For some users, it may be easier to add dividing and milling facilities to the lathe, and use the milling machine only with a low-profile rotary table.


Ron Laden25/11/2020 10:55:36
2079 forum posts
413 photos
Posted by Ron Laden on 24/11/2020 10:46:13:

I have a Soba 5 inch table, it was the size that drew me to it as my mill (SX2P) is not that big. A 4 inch R/T seemed a bit too small and a 6 inch too big, I don't know if other manufacturers do a 5 inch but Soba do and I bought it as a set for £300 which is as much as I could afford at the time. It came with a dividing set, a chuck mounting plate and 80mm 4 jaw chuck and a tailstock.

In one or two places it is a bit rough around the edges but nothing much and overall it is good. Where it is very good is in its operation, I can't fault the table mount and the drive. It has no backlash, no play and the drive is very smooth and most importantly it is accurate.

So it may not look as well engineered or as pretty as the expensive tables but it more than makes up for it in its operation. So it met my budget came with extras and works very well, based on that I can't fault it.


Just in case it should be of interest to anyone with a small mill and is considering a rotary table here are the numbers from my mill with a 5 inch r/t.

Mill table to spindle 280mm

Top face of r/t above mill table 70mm

Face of r/t to spindle 210mm , (mounted horizontal)

Centre of r/t to spindle 137mm, (mounted vertical)

So it's not too bad for a small mill I haven't been caught out yet though I have been close with it in the vertical.


Henry Brown09/12/2020 10:33:49
399 forum posts
91 photos

Chronos have the SOBA HV6 rotary table back in stock Roger...

not done it yet09/12/2020 11:28:32
5428 forum posts
20 photos

A direct copy from their current advertising blurb.

one revolution of the hand wheel = 4′ of rotation of the table

Doesn’t quite compute with other claims, of course, but does demonstrate that one should not believe everything as advertised...🙂

old mart09/12/2020 17:23:43
2502 forum posts
169 photos

I think they meant 4 degrees, rather than 4 minutes.

Michael Gilligan09/12/2020 17:50:17
17075 forum posts
762 photos
Posted by not done it yet on 09/12/2020 11:28:32:

A direct copy from their current advertising blurb.

one revolution of the hand wheel = 4′ of rotation of the table



Well spotted yes

I wonder how the user manual goes about explaining that dont know





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