By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more
Forum sponsored by:
Forum sponsored by Forum House Ad Zone

Ml7 just bought, need help to set up

All Topics | Latest Posts

Search for:  in Thread Title in  
Chris Murphy29/05/2022 16:18:43
57 forum posts
46 photos

Hi all,

I purchased a Myford ml7 at the weekend thru eBay from a guy in Milton Keynes,

looks like quite a good lathe. Needs a clean and a coat of paint tho.

the last time I used a metal lathe was at school so that was a long time ago, but I’ve always wanted one. So basically I’m a newbie and need a bit of advice about how to set it up and to make sure it’s running how it should.

I’ve posted a few pictures, what do you think.

some bit and pieces I got with the lathe, a cushman chuck, but I don’t have a key for this, any idea where I would get one, no key for the larger one also, don’t know what make it is.

what oil would you put in the oil feeders.

the disc with the bobble on it, what exactly is this for and as you can see the quick change post is missing about 4 screws, where could I get them.

many thanks for your help


chris m…….

Robert Butler29/05/2022 18:55:54
402 forum posts
6 photos

I think the pictures are missing!

Robert Butler

noel shelley29/05/2022 19:25:22
1444 forum posts
23 photos

The oil can be SAE 10 or ISO 32 a hydraulic oil. chuck key you may get from ARC. Noel.

not done it yet29/05/2022 19:48:04
6888 forum posts
20 photos
Posted by Robert Butler on 29/05/2022 18:55:54:

I think the pictures are missing!

Robert Butler

You can see it on ebay.

V8Eng29/05/2022 20:07:30
1730 forum posts
6 photos

Welcome to the forum Chris.


Edited By V8Eng on 29/05/2022 20:08:32

Chris Murphy29/05/2022 20:10:44
57 forum posts
46 photos

f0c20c93-7f68-4c06-80a9-62bffc898598.jpegc9ce11db-4f86-4c6b-a65f-45a4a95e697f.jpegc23ca4ba-22f3-4cc4-90a8-d084f70eaac8.jpega148dda6-ed0e-4ba1-9e3c-5b3271650540.jpegHi, sorry all , forgot pictures.

here they are…..

chris m…..8bae506c-ca55-470c-91d9-d1207ae45570.jpeg

Huub29/05/2022 22:50:51
99 forum posts
14 photos
Posted by Chris Murphy 6 on 29/05/2022 16:18:43:e and need a bit of advice about how to set it up and to make sure it’s running how it should.

The quick change post is missing about 4 screws, where could I get them.

These are ordinary screws you probably can get in the hardware store. You can use one of them as an example. I only use 2 srews to lock the tool.

There is a shop in the Netherlands that sells Myfort parts

DMR29/05/2022 23:19:23
128 forum posts
14 photos

Chris, It would help a lot to know where you are in the world. There may be someone near to you who would help. I hope you are not going to do anything with the lathe before changing out of your nice clean slippers!

You should ask the seller if he forgot to give you the relevant chuck keys, but equally you should be able to make your own at far less cost than buying new. Otherwise dial up "lathe chuck key" on ebay and find one with a square end at least as big as you require and file down two sides of it to a fit.

The disc with the bobble on (as you refer to it) is a catch plate for turning work between centers. Dial up "catch plate" on google and it shows you what else you need for that like suitable drive dogs and a couple of centers for each end of your work.


Nigel Graham 229/05/2022 23:33:28
2287 forum posts
33 photos

Welcome Chris!

That machine looks in pretty good fettle. I'd not worry too much about the paintwork but I think you can obtain the proper colour. I don't know if you can also obtain a new transfer.

No rogue grooves or holes in the chuck and faceplate - that and the generally tidy appearance is a good sign the lathe's been used and looked after well. The darker grey patches on the faceplate might be shallow corrosion stains, perhaps from damp storage at some point, but not enough to worry about.

It it is well worth while, indeed adviseable, buying a copy of the operating and servicing manual if one didn't come with this lathe.

Those, spares, accessories etc: try Other more generic accessories, also from ARC, RDG, etc.

There are also good reference books about on turning. Some go off into making great arrays of fittings and tools that you may find useful.


The thing with the "dimple" is a catch-plate used when turning between centres. The plate is screwed onto the spindle in place of the chuck. The work, located by a centre in the spindle and tailstock, is gripped by a "dog", a steel forging with a tear-drop shaped hole and a set-screw, and the dog's tail is either straight and engaged by the pin (the "dimple" ) or is bent at 90º to locate in the catch-plate slot. At least one of those types of dog should have come with the lathe, hopefully; along with the centres.

Tool-post screws: probably BSF but you'd need measure their diameters and pitches to find out; or use a known screw or nut as a comparator. I'd ask of the various suppliers who advertise on here and in the magazines, in the first instance. If you use standard screws I would recommend turning a little chamfer or spigot on their lower ends so their thread starts don't become crushed. It's also a good idea to put a strip of brass or aluminium betwixt screw and tool shank to take the wear, especially if you use tools with soft shanks / holders. I have found...


Did it come with its set of change-wheels?

I had to buy all mine - the few that came with it second-hand might not be original so might not mesh correctly with proper ones: correct pitch etc. but the unknowns may be of different pressure-angle.That is a very subtle difference determined only by special measuring, but is enough to harm mis-matched wheels.

There should be a chart inside the cover, giving their selections for all the threads you or I are likely to need; including common metric pitches, and fine feeds.


THE one thing not to do when you fit to a bench, if you don't have its proper cabinet / stand and "levelling screws" , is simply bolt it straight down to whatever angle-iron or worse, timber, table you happen to have. That is a recipe for distorting the bed, maybe only ever so slightly but enough to ruin its accuracy and over time, induce uneven wear. Note that "levelling" in machine-tool parlance refers to ensuring straightness and parallelism of the machine, rather than level to the building. That is good, but less critical, within reason.

My ML7 had suffered like that in its previous owner's workshop, but luckily seems to have recovered. It had been bolted hard down to a wooden bench via a strange cast-iron tray that did not even have planed or milled faces for the machine's feet!

Hopper30/05/2022 00:39:40
6690 forum posts
347 photos

The toolpost screws are 1/4 BSW from any bolt supplier. If the dont have BSW, then UNC will work. Thats what I use.

The Myford ML7 Users Manual is available for free download all over the net if you google it.

The other must-have book for these old lathes is The Amateurs Lathe by L H Sparey. Out of print but still widely available new or used.

Your lathe looks like a good 'un. The clutch is a nice accessory to have. Paint would be good enough for me but sell the paint and stickers and many other parts.

Happy lathing.

Edited By Hopper on 30/05/2022 00:40:11

Chris Murphy30/05/2022 07:28:11
57 forum posts
46 photos

Hi everyone,

thanks for all the replies.

it’s nice to know that if I have any problems I can always ask on the forum.


chris m….

David-Clark 130/05/2022 08:26:54
222 forum posts

I don’t think anyone mentioned oil. Use Nuto 32. Very thin and available on EBay. For slideways I used two stroke motor oil made for motor cycles.

Chris Murphy30/05/2022 08:58:09
57 forum posts
46 photos


thanks for the tip.

do you need a special gun to get oil in the oil nipples on the lathe or is there something else you can use.


chris m….

SillyOldDuffer30/05/2022 09:19:30
8896 forum posts
1998 photos

Posted by Chris Murphy 6 on 30/05/2022 08:58:09:


do you need a special gun to get oil in the oil nipples on the lathe…

An ordinary pump oil can with a spout that fits reasonably well should do.

But welcome to the world of leaky oil cans! Probably everyone who ever bought a lathe is unhappy with his oil-can. They almost all leak! The one provided by Myford with new machines is often criticised, as are those that come with new Far Eastern lathes.

My least leaky oil can is a cheap plastic one, I think it came from Halfords.

Reilang Oil Cans have a good reputation, but they don't please everyone all the time. Extra annoying when an expensive tool is no better than a cheap one!

The main thing is to get a squirt of oil into the lathe, ideally before each session.


Hopper30/05/2022 10:03:08
6690 forum posts
347 photos

You can also get a good quality oil gun from Press Parts web site.

The cheaper Sealey one I bought leaks from every seam. Don't bother.

Neither will get into the nipple on the backgear in the headstock. For that I use an oil can with the brass nozzle turned down to a fine enough point to go inside the hole the tiny spring loaded ball sits in. Which works for all the others too if you want to go that way.

As to what type of oil, any unused engine oil is my usual preference. Seems to work OK and has done so for over 50 years on my older Drummond lathe. Actually, more like 70 since my dad first got it. But if buying oil, ISO32 hydraulic oil is the recommended for headstock and general lube and ISO64 hydraulic for the slideways. Or you can get special slideway oil but that might be overkill on a vintage machine.

PS. Looking at the pics of your new lathe again, it would be a shame to repaint that old survivor. That is a very well preserved and unmolested original example. Even still has the Myford stickers on the oilers. What a cream puff!

Edited By Hopper on 30/05/2022 10:05:57

Howard Lewis30/05/2022 13:32:09
6311 forum posts
15 photos

By all means buy and read L H Sparey, but also get Ian Bradley's "The Amateurs Workshop" or his "Myford Series 7 Manual". Both these books give the instructions for taking the twist out of the bed, to minimise the risk of not turning parallel. (Sparey does not, unfortunately )

Once that has been done, the Tailstock should be aligned, so that unless a taper is deliberately required, work turned between centres should be parallel.


Gep Engler30/05/2022 13:40:13
19 forum posts
3 photos

Hi Chris,
Congratulations with your new "toy"!

You can find a ton of information on the old website of Chris Heapy:
and navigate to "Workshop Techniques".

Unfortunately, the original website was canceled and the author disapeared.
But someone saved most of it, probably without the pictures.
Although the links are broken, it seems many of the pictures are now here:

Good luck and best regards from The Neterlands,
Gep **LINK**

Howard Lewis30/05/2022 18:40:29
6311 forum posts
15 photos

Welcome to the Forum.

Whereabouts are you?

If you don't recognise a Catchplate, you probably need help with other things, as well. So person to person will be the quickest way to learn the trade.

Try to find a local Model Engineering Club, and join.

In this way, you can probably get some face to face help in setting up your lathe.

Watching someone more skilled will be a help, with a demonstration being followed by guidance while working hands on.

A good starting point would be to buy and study some books.

A good one for you would be Ian Bradley's "Myford 7 Series Manual".

Another good one, on general workshop practice, would be his "The Amateurs Workshop"

These will give advice on the bench for the lathe and how to set it up to turn accurately.

You will need a set of Zeus Charts. The charts give a LOT of information on threads and the sizes needed to cut them. I still regularly use the ones that I bought in 1958,

For sizes below 1/2", mostly you can use Taps and Dies It is usual to start a drilled hole by using a centre drill to make a starting point for the pilot drill, before using the final size drill..

If you do not have any measuring equipment, you will need to buy some.

A digital calliper will be a good starting point. Since you have a four jaw chuck, you will soon need a Magnetic base and a D T I. Without such equipment, it will be impossible to set work to run truly concentric..

Another help with such work will be second centre. Once you have mastered centering work in the 4 jaw, you can make one, It would be a good training exercise for you.

And remember that a 3 jaw chuck, whilst it may be self centering, will not hold work absolutely central. A good one will hold work so that it is only 0.003" eccentric. And the concentricity may well vary, depending on the diameter being held..

The hardware on the ML7 will be Imperial threads and sizes, not Metric

You can become familiar with the lathe and its use by using it to make a few tools. Start with simple ones, and become more adventourous as you gain experience.

Making a Centre Height Gauge will give some experience in simple turning, and in drilling an tapping.holes,

Then you can make a couple of Tap Wrenches,.one for small taps, and one for larger.ones.

You will need to lubricate Taps and Dies, and learn the technique for their muse, so that you do not break them, and ruin the workpiece.

As you gain experience, and confidence, you can move on to make more complicated tools. O K, you could buy some of them, but you won't learn as much from a credit card!

Making tooling can become a hobby in itself.

You will make mistakes, but you will learn from them and your successes.

By making simple small tools, you will learn (Better to scrap a bit of mild steel bar than an expensive casting in a kit! ) The tools will be useable for many years to come.

I still have a Tap Wrench made when I was an Apprentice, a LONG time ago

If you do not have one, you will soon need a Bench Grinder so that you can grind tools for the lathe. Since the ML7 is a design from 1947, you would do well to use High Speed Steel, rather than carbide tips. (These were developed for heavy, rigid, industrial machines to remove a lot of metal FAST. As hobbyists, we are not on piecework so do not really need them. They have their uses, but for a lot of work, you can manage with HSS )



All Topics | Latest Posts

Please login to post a reply.

Magazine Locator

Want the latest issue of Model Engineer or Model Engineers' Workshop? Use our magazine locator links to find your nearest stockist!

Find Model Engineer & Model Engineers' Workshop

Sign up to our Newsletter

Sign up to our newsletter and get a free digital issue.

You can unsubscribe at anytime. View our privacy policy at

Latest Forum Posts
Support Our Partners
Eccentric July 5 2018
Rapid RC
Eccentric Engineering
Subscription Offer

Latest "Wanted" Ads
Get In Touch!

Do you want to contact the Model Engineer and Model Engineers' Workshop team?

You can contact us by phone, mail or email about the magazines including becoming a contributor, submitting reader's letters or making queries about articles. You can also get in touch about this website, advertising or other general issues.

Click THIS LINK for full contact details.

For subscription issues please see THIS LINK.

Digital Back Issues

Social Media online

'Like' us on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter
 Twitter Logo

Pin us on Pinterest