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View Full Version : Purchasing a Collet chuck



skipd1
05-24-2012, 12:25 PM
I want to purchase a 5C collet chuck for my 9" South bend lathe. I have purchased a number if items from CDCO with good success and fast service, however I have heard some horror stories with regards to their $130 chuck. I also am considering the Little Machine Shop as theirs is in the $199 price and am assuming that its better quality. I can't really afford a Bison or other high quality American made chuck at $400-500 price range. Any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated.

Regards

Skipd1

MichaelP
05-24-2012, 12:39 PM
I think those two chucks will be the same. With some DIY adjustments they work acceptably. We had a recent thread on this subject a few months ago.

photomankc
05-24-2012, 12:45 PM
I want to purchase a 5C collet chuck for my 9" South bend lathe. I have purchased a number if items from CDCO with good success and fast service, however I have heard some horror stories with regards to their $130 chuck. I also am considering the Little Machine Shop as theirs is in the $199 price and am assuming that its better quality. I can't really afford a Bison or other high quality American made chuck at $400-500 price range. Any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated.

Regards

Skipd1

Decide if you want a potential $135 to $199 boat anchor. I bought the CDCO chuck and after mounting it up the runout was abhorrent, I mean astoundingly bad. I spent several weeks checking it out and came to the conclusion that even the taper was off axis. I eventually mounted a 1.125" steel bar and turned a stub to clamp the chuck onto and the cause became clear. The stub was showing no runout but the register in the chuck was way out and the rear face was not perpendicular to the clamped bar. I could not get rid of the conical runout it kept showing. Since it took forever to get a spare adapter plate on backorder for my lathe I was past CDCO's return period so I tried fixing it, but once I got the runout just 'ok' the thing was so far out of balance I don't like using it past 750RPM. It now sits on my shelf to remind me why I eventually went and bought a Bison set-tru 3 jaw. It was expensive but is a joy to use and I know when I chuck up my work it's going to be done as well as my little lathe allows. Took a lot of work to make my own custom mounting plate for that but it was well worth the effort unlike the weeks of cursing that the CDCO chuck brought me.

I'm probably going to get a hex 5C collet block and use that in the Bison when I need the features of a 5C. If I ever get another collet chuck it will not be Chinese.

If you wish to roll the dice then have everything you need to get it mounted up quickly 30 days can tick off quick when you are waiting for parts and then have to get the work done too.

RTPBurnsville
05-24-2012, 02:32 PM
I have a CDCO chuck on my SB 9 inch lathe and it works just fine and gets used about 50% of the time. I am pretty sure all the Chinese ones are basically the same at what ever price-point you select, YMMV.

Robert

Arbo
05-24-2012, 03:00 PM
Some years back, I purchased the ER32 collet chuck from LMS for use on my SB9. I used their threaded backer plate to adapt it to the spindle. The catch is, that the registration bore on the back of the chuck was not concentric with the taper bore. I had about .004" TIR on the first setup. That didn't satisfy me, so I called LMS and told them what I had found. They shipped me another backer plate, and I started over. I chucked a one inch round in my four jaw chuck, turned a section to .750, installed the collet chuck on that round with the registration bore toward the tailstock. I cleaned up the registration bore with a carbide boring bar. Then I turned the new backing plate to accept the new registration bore. I now have it running within a few tenths. Quick and easy work changes up to .750, and you can pull a piece out and rechuck later with virtually no runout. With a full set of ER32s, you can virtually cover any diameter stock up to .750 because of the amount of clamping flex in the ER series collets.

Just something to think about. I believe the ERs outperform the 5Cs in the versatility department. I think if you bump up to ER40, you get up to one inch capacity...Keeping in mind your spindle bore is still .750.

Arthur.Marks
05-24-2012, 03:05 PM
I have a feeling you may feel intimidated in making one, but how else does one learn? You might want to try your hand at this casting set: http://www.statecollegecentral.com/metallathe/MLA21.html It was designed with the South Bend lathes directly in mind and is in your price range. I'm sure others on this board have made one and could guide you through any questions you might encounter. It is just a thought... an alternate suggestion.

skipd1
05-24-2012, 03:14 PM
Some years back, I purchased the ER32 collet chuck from LMS for use on my SB9. I used their threaded backer plate to adapt it to the spindle. The catch is, that the registration bore on the back of the chuck was not concentric with the taper bore. I had about .004" TIR on the first setup. That didn't satisfy me, so I called LMS and told them what I had found. They shipped me another backer plate, and I started over. I chucked a one inch round in my four jaw chuck, turned a section to .750, installed the collet chuck on that round with the registration bore toward the tailstock. I cleaned up the registration bore with a carbide boring bar. Then I turned the new backing plate to accept the new registration bore. I now have it running within a few tenths. Quick and easy work changes up to .750, and you can pull a piece out and rechuck later with virtually no runout. With a full set of ER32s, you can virtually cover any diameter stock up to .750 because of the amount of clamping flex in the ER series collets.

Just something to think about. I believe the ERs outperform the 5Cs in the versatility department. I think if you bump up to ER40, you get up to one inch capacity...Keeping in mind your spindle bore is still .750.


I can see your point, however I also have a small mill and I would like to get a spin indexer and some other items that use the 5C collet. I really don't want to have two seperate collet systems unless there is a good advantage to do so. At this time, as new as I am at this machining business I have no experience with these types of decisions.

photomankc
05-24-2012, 03:32 PM
Lots of mills will run ER32 collets as well. Big reason I have ER25's was to be able to hold a drill with very low run-out when needed. All of my ER collets will just wipe the floor with the drill chucks for runout. They can handle sizes less the nominal marked diameter pretty well so a set in 16th's covers a lot of territory.

Heck, maybe I just talked myself into it.

mikem
05-24-2012, 04:46 PM
I got one for my SB 10K and machined the backing plate so that it runs within .0015. I suppose that I could fiddle with it to get it closer to perfect but that's close enough for now.

I have a set of the 6K collets that match the SB taper but I wanted soething that I could use in the 5C blocks and spindexers.

SDL
05-24-2012, 06:45 PM
I can see your point, however I also have a small mill and I would like to get a spin indexer and some other items that use the 5C collet. I really don't want to have two seperate collet systems unless there is a good advantage to do so. At this time, as new as I am at this machining business I have no experience with these types of decisions.

You can get spin indexers to take ER32 and Hex and Square blocks.

Steve Larner

MichaelP
05-24-2012, 07:27 PM
FWIW, I have both, 5C and ER, fixtures and collets and tend to use 5C most of the time on the lathe and with fixtures (spin indexers, collet blocks, grinding fixtures, etc.). Mill gets its own R8 collets or, when absolutely necessary, ER series. I use ERs occasionally to hold larger tool shanks in the tailstock too, but I just don't like the way you change ER collets. Maybe something personal...