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Thread: Unbolting headstock from bed? Alignment issues?

  1. #1
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    Default Unbolting headstock from bed? Alignment issues?

    I think that I read somewhere that if you unbolt the headstock assembly from the lathe bed, that you can put things out off alignment when you put it all back together.

    Can someone shed some light on this? Surely it can't really be an issue?


  2. #2
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    Alignment on reassembly can be a problem if the headstock doesn't have alignment pins. I have completely disassembled 2 lathes for transport to the shop. In both cases they had alignment pins. Neither has had an alignment problem after reassembly.

  3. #3
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    Why should it? If the alignment is non-adjustable then it can only go back on. If it's adjustable, adjust it after re-fitting the headstock and aligning the ways.

    Have you checked the alignment pre-disassembly? Is the lathe fixed down/levelled? There's a fairly good chance that in it's current state it won't be perfectly aligned.
    Peter - novice home machinist, modern motorcycle enthusiast.

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    Herbert 0V adapted to R8 by 'Sir John'.
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  4. #4
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    Every machine I ever took apart the head base has a V machined in it on one side so it has to be in alignment when put back on. The only thing I can see happening is you get some particle or chip under it and it doesn't sit flat. Think of it as like the tail stock. If you slide it off the bed and put it back on the alignment should repeat.

    JL...........

  5. #5
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    Yeah thanks that's what I had been thinking.

  6. #6
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    What JoeLee said. Just be sure to clean the mating surfaces before reassembly.
    Paul A.

    Make it fit.
    You can't win and there is a penalty for trying!

  7. #7
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    Don't assume anything... The Emco's I had have machined v-ways BUT the head stock is further shimmed into alignment (axially and radially) with either very thin (sub thou) metal shims or oiled paper (yep) on the SIDES on the V way. Doesn't take much to be a problem as you get further way from the head stock.

    When you put it back together, check it (many threads on how to do this) and adjust as required.
    Last edited by lakeside53; 08-24-2019 at 11:33 AM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by lakeside53 View Post
    Don't assume anything... The Emco's I had have machined v-ways BUT the head stock is further shimmed into alignment (axially and radially) with either very thin (sub thou) metal shims or oiled paper (yep) on the SIDES on the V way. Doesn't take much to be a problem as you get further way from the head stock.

    When you put it back together, check it (many threads on how to do this) and adjust as required.
    That a hack way of achieving alignment. Better lathe manufacturers scarped the headstock into alignment.

  9. #9
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    Depends on the lathe, unfortunately. Some smaller english lathes (particularly those with dovetail beds) have all kinds of weird gibs and adjustment screws. Inverted V ways generally have the headstock scraped to alignment. We'd need to know the lathe in question to be sure.

    allan

  10. #10
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    Look to see if the vees in the bed extend right under the headstock. It is probable that the headstock was aligned with the vees and then bolted down. The bolts play no part in the alignment.The manufacturers probably bored the head bearing housings in line with the bed and if cleaned carefully on re assembly, it cannot be miss aligned.
    I took the headstock off the Smart & Brown model A and only had to carefully clean off years of old soluble oil stains off the mating parts.

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