View Full Version : Proper Size Rotary table - Bench top Mill

03-04-2009, 09:48 PM

I am in the market for a rotary table. Did the research and I am sold on the Phase II. I can't decide if the 8" or 6" would be best. I don't want to get the 8" and find its to big for the machine, or the 6" and find I am limited. Enco has a deal this month on a dividing plate and tailstock combo I want to take advantage of as well!

What do the experts think?

This is for a bench top RF-31.


03-04-2009, 10:50 PM
An 8" or larger RT seems to be the recomended size, but I find after purchasing an 8" Phase 2 that it is a bit large for my Griz. 3103. I dont know how that compares in size to your machine. I would surly be willing to trade and unused 8" for a 6", as it would give me more usable room, and reduce the weight on the end of my mill table.


03-04-2009, 10:55 PM
Is there difference in how much daylight it either takes up (amount of space between spindle and table)? probably not. Next consideration is how much you can carry - get the biggest you can move. Mines 12" and its all i can do to lift it off the mill table and put it on a shelf but I've never ever wished it was smaller. its not the size of the work, its have a decent amount of space to arrange clamps etc.

A.K. Boomer
03-05-2009, 09:29 AM
I got the phase II 8" and its the perfect size for my mills 8" by 36" table, its rigid enough to handle jobs far larger than itself -- not to contradict but you dont need a larger RT table to do larger work, all you need is a larger adapter plate;) -------- iv yet to have to build one.

03-05-2009, 10:02 AM
I just looked up the RF-31. According to the specs I found, the table is (about) 8" x 28". IMO that ought to be big enough to accommodate an 8" rotary table. My mill's table is 7x30 and it takes my 9" r/t with no problem.

03-05-2009, 04:44 PM
I use an 8" Phase II (Craigslist find: $100w/ a bunch of hold down stuff) on the miserable tiny "mill table" of my Smithy Granite 1324. It works just fine. I have a 12" phase II for the B'port at work and I need help to get it from the cabinet to the table.

03-05-2009, 06:38 PM
I echo SGW, I have a similar sized machine as the RF-31 and it handles the 8" Rotab perfectly well despite being 20 years old and in less that perfect condition.

I have a colleague with the same sized mill who bought the 6" Rotab and he wishes he'd gone for the 8" because he is limited in the size of the work he can clamp to the table. We also both mount our 6" lathe chuck on the RTs from time to time.

Mounting mine on the 8" table was just a matter of machining an adapter disk, he's had to step his chuck out from the RT in order to fit it which (a) is a pita to set up and (b) reduces rigidity in the setup.

03-05-2009, 07:42 PM
I'll also endorse the 8" Phase II rotary table. At one point in time I had, and used my 8" table on an RF-31. As McGyver says, you should allow room for clamping your stock and the 8" provides that for a hobbyist. Definitely go for the dividing hardware and tailstock............

Also, please note, in the main catalog Enco offers some additional accessories for the Phase II rotary tables to make them into 'Superspacers", which consists of a three jaw chuck and an adapter plate (sold separately), complete with mounting hardware to fit the table as well as an alignment plug to set everything in the proper alignment. After the chuck and plate are bolted to the table, the alignment plug can be removed through the open chuck jaws, leaving a through hole.

Of course, you can also roll your own like a lot of other folks have done.....


03-06-2009, 01:32 PM
What are you going to use it for???

I bought a 6", but promptly beat it to death cutting down large chunks of
cast iron. It works OK for the smaller things I do,
but even though my mill/drill table's pretty small, a bigger rotary would have
been better for the work I mounted on it.

And clamping's a pain for just about anything... I'm learning to be creative,
but that wasn't the goal when I bought it!

If I take on another large project, I'll get an 8" as well.


03-06-2009, 10:07 PM
Thanks for the replies.

General Hobby use, no real project for it. I have a small race car that I run, so I see my life being easier with one!

Just ordered the 8" set.

Thanks, can't wait to start playing!!!

doctor demo
03-06-2009, 11:26 PM
[QUOTE=A.K. Boomernot to contradict but you dont need a larger RT table to do larger work, all you need is a larger adapter plate;) -------- iv yet to have to build one.[/QUOTE]
Adapter plates are the cats meow;) , I have an 8'' rt at home and a14'' square plate for it that I use from time to time . It realy can help with odd clamp setups. We have a 20'' rt at work that has a 36'' plate on it, with chuck type jaws . I thought about putting a motor on it and making it into a vertical lathe , no reason ''Bullard"" should have the market cornered:D .