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Thread: smithy lathe's

  1. #21
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Several things a good used machine from a private seller can be a plus in a couple ways one the lower price and the tooling you can get in the deal. I have 2 lathes Im setting up currently A 14 x 40 nardinni and a 12 X40 clausing. I bought out a friends shop when he retired. These machines were purchased new by him and spent their life in a 1 man shop. My bridge port is a 9X48 series 1 from same shop. rebuilt just before he bought it. The delta Rockwell surface grinder is a 1944 model. Along with the four machines I made 4 trips for tooling for them. chucks 3 and 4 jaw, collets round square hex standard and metric. mill vises, r-8 collets, insert cutters, some endmill ( mostly bigger ones), a dividing head and tailstock. And other tooling. steady rests and follower rests for both lathes. Draw bars. The nardinni has coolant also. The grinder had several hubs and 12-16 wheels for it. Magnetic chuck, dresser and a few other odds and ends. On top of this the family threw in almost all the stock on the racks gull lengths and cut ends from 1/2"- 3" in 10l and 4140 prehard a little aluminum and some starret gage stock. Close to 3000lbs of stock. Also got the phase converters for the mill and lathe.

    A used machine may cost a little more but the extras in tooling and such out weight that.
    If this deal hadn't came along for a lathe I would have looked at a grizzly or jet 12 X 40 new. Used a hardringe 10 X 24 ( here barrels can be done easily since the spindle bore is 1 1/2") or one of the many atlas clausing monarch or others out there. As to mill Index South bend Bridgeport acer jet all have some nice machines.

    For safety's sake unless you have the needed equipment and skill Hire a crew of riggers or millwrights to load and move your equipment. For an idea the nardinni lathe I bought is 3500lbs dry the clausing lathe is 2500lbs the Bridgeport mill is 2500 with out readouts, vises collet racks. The crew I hired showed up on the given day at 9:00 at my friends, loaded all the equipment most of the tooling and stock. Brought to my garage set it very close to where I wanted it. By 1:20 they were picking up their toys. All for $800.00 and 3 pizzas LOL. This saved a lot of struggling cussinng smashed toes or gingers or worse. And best of all no damage to the machines or tooling.
    Moving equipment with pinch bars come alongs and rollers can be done and works. Disassembling machines to get into pieces that can be handled to move and carried works. Its a lot of work and time added.

  2. #22
    Boolit Master
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    My first lathe is a 6"x20" craftsman metal working lathe. Used to shop at a lot of used machine shop suppliers for tool bits, drills, small endmills, and one shop had a bunch of used and new parts for my lathe. Guy gave me a huge break on the price and did not hesitate to buy them. Looking at the catalog he indeed gave me a generous deal. About 4 years back finally got a bigger lathe a Jet 13x40 gearhead lathe. While it did come with the basic setup no tooling. And now living in a different state some of the tool bits were big enough to use on the bigger lathe. So ground them up and then stoned them and they work. Over the years have amassed a decent tooling setup for the jet. Funny story, before I got the Jet looked around locally for a lathe. I actually found one on the side of an off road so looked it over. Rusty, wheels were frozen, wires looked like they were ripped out of the control box and stuck in the grass. Found a local machine shop and they were the ones that had it for sale. Guy wanted 5K no tooling and only a 3 jaw chuck. Thanked him and left. Frank

  3. #23
    Boolit Master jmorris's Avatar
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    I started to write a reply then noticed the thread was almost a decade old and the OP hasnít been here in two years...

  4. #24
    Boolit Master

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    I appreciate all the information. Some of us dream of getting one and need the information.

  5. #25
    Boolit Grand Master

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    The do all hobby lathe / mill combos are somewhat of a pain as they are seldom set up for what you want to do at a given time. Most are under powered. ( my little harbor freight 7X12? wont run a 1/4" tap under power but stalls out) Better would be a small older used lathe like an atlas Sheldon monarch hardringe clausing and a milling attachment for it. These are a little harder to set up and use in that its more horizontal machine and sometimes harder to see what is being done.
    Dedicated machines make life much easier and allow for more to be done easier. There's a reason shops have lathes mills grinders shapers and other tools. A lot even have various sizes of lathes and mills to depending on work.( a day pushing the tail stock on a big lathe doing small work is a long day) Same with the carriage and tooling. A big mill doing little work is also more tiring than needed. A bridgeports R8 collet weighs less than a pound a NM50 tool holder is close to 5lbs for the same tool size. Another issue is the bigger machines don't always have the spindle speeds for the smaller cutters.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmorris View Post
    I started to write a reply then noticed the thread was almost a decade old and the OP hasnít been here in two years...
    Yep it looks as if a new guy (only one post) dug up this almost 10 year old thread and replied as if it was yesterday, he probably didn't notice the date. In any case the new replies are helpful info in case someone has been wondering about the topic but as you so correctly pointed out the OP has been AWOL for a couple of years now.

    Not a thing wrong with new replies to an old post but it might make any such replies a bit more relevant and helpful if the person posting a reply is aware that the OP is apparently gone and the question was asked 10 years ago. Still there was some good info posted so I suppose it wasn't a waste.
    Statistics show that criminals commit fewer crimes after they have been shot

  7. #27
    Boolit Master
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    I was a tool and die maker for 49 yrs and had my own shop for 25. In my opinion, any machine that claims to do everything, usually does nothing well. I've had bridgeports and lathes for many years. I would suggest getting a lathe first and make sure you get all the tooling with it. That means a 3 and 4 jaw independent chucks and a face plate. With a little know-how you can do much with it.

  8. #28
    Boolit Master
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    Most of the small bench top lathes and milling machines all come with the round central post which is usually a royal PITA to align and keep it that way. Get the ones with the square central post makes life a lot easier. Plus that setup is more rigid than the round post. Friend calls me over one night to show me his new milling machine. Sure enough a round post. Told me he had to keep adjusting the different setups to get repeatabiliy, 6 months later a new milling machine had shown up and wonders a square post one. Happy as a clam.Frank

  9. #29
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Bridge port never claimed their mills were the most solid but did claim they were universal. with some thought and work almost any job can be done on them. But heavy machining or roughing will push the heads out of tram. In a lot of jobs we roughed them in the checked head for square tram and then finished. Some lathes had this issue with tailstocks that would shift under force or vibration. Those big old heavy Cincinnati and Milwaukee mills were a dream to run and they were solid and could rough with no problem.

  10. #30
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    I have a buddy who just went into a rest home. He bought a Smitty about 10yrs ago when he retired. Both us had connections for tooling. We amassed a ton of stuff. I saw no problem with the lathe mode other than its to small. We made a lot of parts with it. I will say it's a major PIA to go to mill mode. Neither one of us are master machinist but we got the job done. We made runs of firing pins and other turned type gun parts. It would be nice to have a small mill and a good lathe but not practical for a lot of people. Smitty it is what it is but its a lot
    better than nothing.

  11. #31
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    ..............I had the space, but did NOT have the money. I also had the burning desire. I put together enough cash to buy a Harbor Freight combo machine:



    They haven't sold this thing in years. I was tickled to death to get it, and welded up a table for it you could have set a Cat dozer on. I made quite a few things with it, and it was a lot better then a hacksaw and a file, lemme tell ya. It also taught me a LOT.



    The above is one of the first 'Real' things I made using the combo machine. It's a cocking handle for an old Winchester 22RF semi-auto rifle. Original busted one on the right. If a combo machine is all you can afford, and you're short of space then a 'Name' combination machine (With a warranty and a guarantee) will suffice for 'One Off' things.

    I was eventually able to buy a well tooled recent model Logan 11" lathe. Actually made by Powermatic in the 80's after Logan went out of business. Some years after that I was fortunate to be able to purchase a new ENCO (Chinese) 9x42 Bridgeport type knee mill. From then on, life was pretty much bliss. Ahem But then you need a rotary table and other items of tooling

    The main thing is, do not look down your nose at whatever you can afford to get yourself making stuff.

    .................Buckshot
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  12. #32
    Boolit Master
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    I have better machines now but I started with a beat up South Bend with worn ways. It might be frustrating at times but working around the problem inherent in a machine can be done and makes you think!

  13. #33
    Boolit Master

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    Got a Smthy 1220 Ltd about 15 years ago. I like it, it gives me independence. I've made enough to buy a least three more doing odd jobs. It has faults but made me a better machinist, get er done type of thing. I'd like to go bigger but three phase and floor space are my only obstacles. Some day.
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  14. #34
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by leebuilder View Post
    but three phase and floor space are my only obstacles.
    We see a lot of this, the three phase part, and while floor space may remain a problem a three phase motor is a plus NOT an obstacle!

    All of my machines are three phase, including my 12" pedestal grinder, and I don't have three phase power nor do I want it, with today's neat electronic gizmos those three phase motors can be taught all sorts of new tricks. You don't need three phase power (nor a bulky old style phase converter) all you need is a small VFD controller (variable frequency driver) and your single speed one direction three phase motor will magically become smoothly variable speed with instant reverse and dynamic braking to boot! My old style J-head BridgePort can easily do things it never dreamed of in an earlier life and can run at all the usable speeds it could not before that vfd was added.

    Space may be a problem but don't let a three phase machine hinder you at all!
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  15. #35
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldred View Post
    We see a lot of this, the three phase part, and while floor space may remain a problem a three phase motor is a plus NOT an obstacle!

    All of my machines are three phase, including my 12" pedestal grinder, and I don't have three phase power nor do I want it, with today's neat electronic gizmos those three phase motors can be taught all sorts of new tricks. You don't need three phase power (nor a bulky old style phase converter) all you need is a small VFD controller (variable frequency driver) and your single speed one direction three phase motor will magically become smoothly variable speed with instant reverse and dynamic braking to boot! My old style J-head BridgePort can easily do things it never dreamed of in an earlier life and can run at all the usable speeds it could not before that vfd was added.

    Space may be a problem but don't let a three phase machine hinder you at all!
    You've nailed it why I want to convert my little Atlas to 3phase. It's only half hp but I think the tricks I could do with a VFD would make it into a different machine than it is. Belt changes would be minimal for instance and would likely be a "low vs high" sort of thing then the VFD would do the rest of the speed control.

  16. #36
    Boolit Grand Master

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    On your atlas a dc motor from a treadmill and the speed controller will five you variable speed control and reverse. They can be found in the trash or almost next to nothing at yard sales. Most of them run 1 1/2-3 hp so even with the lose if power slowing down you should be fine

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
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LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check