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Lathe placement in shop question.

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  • Lathe placement in shop question.

    Hey all (again)
    If you had your druthers, where is the best place to put your lathe?
    I'm trying to plan ahead here because I want to anchor this lathe to the floor. I may also want to add a coolant sump that may need access from the rear and the electrical panel also needs rear access.
    This machine will fit where my SB is now if I move my mill over a bit but it will be right up against the wall.
    I could put the tailstock end in against the wall and have the lathe sticking straight out from the wall. I must be missing something because it doesn't seem quite right.
    Can't put the headstock end up to the wall or I can't pass long stuff throught the bore...(duh)
    Or I could bugger up my room I use to work on vehicles and put it in the middle of the floor. Then I won't have room to use my tubing bender...hmmmm.
    I guess I just need a bigger shop.
    Probably a dumb question but someone here usually has a better idea! Thanks
    I have tools I don't even know I own...

  • #2

    Have you thought about cutting a hole in the wall so long stock could pass through? Visited a CNC shop with a barfeeder that sat in the next room, worked pretty well.

    This may not be an option if the restroom is right behind the lathe................

    Barry Milton
    Barry Milton


    • #3
      That's funny because I immediately thought of putting it by a window for long stock.

      I have always located most machines, including my lathe, parallel to the wall. Mostly out of necessity. I think if you have the room (which I presently don't) placing it at about a 30 degree angle with the headstock sticking out, may be a good idea. Long stock can stick out into the isle and it even allows a workpiece to extend a fair amount beyond the tailstock end. The 30 degree angle allows rear access at the headstock end where most things are or can be by moving the carriage there.

      Paul A.
      Paul A.
      SE Texas

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


      • #4
        I think the best way to position machines in a shop is at a 45 degree angle to the wall, tailstock end to the wall. You'll usually find that this takes less space then putting them in rows or end to end around the walls. It increases the accessability to the back of the machine as well.


        • #5
          Go to the Grizzly site ...
          There is a workshop planner thingy there.
          You can move round aad plonk different peices of grizzly machinery around a workshop in which you key in the diamentions.
          then you just imagin them bits of grizzly stuff are your own tools.
          works very well.

          all the best.mark


          • #6
            DON'T TRY THIS AT HOME. I'm going parallel to the and out just enough I can work back there. It also sits to the left of the mill and close enough that the mill could be use to the lathe. It might be possible to turn a 2inch pipe 10 feet long on my SBL9x40. Maybe not, but until I actually test the capacity and can boast it !

            last shop had it up against the wall and I sure didn't like that.
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            It is true, there is nothing free about freedom, don't be so quick to give it away.


            • #7
              Hahaha...see what I mean! I never thought of putting it at an angle. Later I'll have to try that Grizzly "shop builder" deal.
              Barry....the only thing around here that needs a hole in it seems to already have head!
              Must have a hole in it for getting into this machining sport!
              I have tools I don't even know I own...


              • #8
                Torker, I put my lathe at a 45 degree angle to a corner of the shop, with the headstock toward the middle of the shop. It's out far enough for me to be able to walk around and be able to clean up any errant chips. This way, when I'm working, my back is to the wall and I'm facing the shop door. I can see anyone coming into the shop. I don't like to be surprised when I'm working. My toolbox is behind me at a location out of line with the lathe chuck so it doesn't fill up with chips. The mill-drill sits a little further over to the left so I can use the same tool box for both.
                Richard Montgomery
                Robert, LA


                • #9
                  Russ, If the lathe is the same as mine it is set up for a coolent system in the tailstock end. Mine is parallel to the wall with enough room to work behind the machine which I have had to do a lot in the beginning. Make sure all of the electrical connections are tight and I would suggest taking a picture of the electrical system. I don't have or can't find the electrical diagrams on my machine and have had to trace wiring several times.




                  • #10
                    I like 2 x 12" shelving in the shop.
                    Works well for heavy stuff.

                    One shelf is a matching height for the chip tray and the lathe is placed so the chip tray barely clears the shelf.
                    That leaves room behind the lathe for storage or whatever.

                    Above the chip level shelf are three more shelves, the tallest topping out at 8'.

                    Next to the lathe, some shelves - also 2 x 12" - making for a chuck & other stuff cupboard.
                    This has a 1/2" particle wood door on a piano hinge with magnetic catches.

                    The shelves are 24' long and run most of the length of the 28' wide shop.

                    All shelves are dadoed and lag screwed together.


                    • #11
                      I think you all have me sold on the 45* angle setup. Another C9 says, I can add some shelving behind the head section of the lathe now also. If I put it parallel to the wall and pull it out I'll lose the use of one end of my bench. Thanks!
                      I have tools I don't even know I own...


                      • #12
                        Hey, I like the 45deg. "angle". My shop is the size of a spare bedroom so the lathe is as close to the wall as I can get it and still squeeze in behind the motor. Good thing I'm skinny. Why didn't you tell us this sooner?


                        • #13
                          When I set my lathe up I spaced it four feet out from the wall facing not toward the wall but facing away. Let's you look out over your shop and not at a wall.

                          Against the wall is one of those compartmented metal storage cabinet for keeping short pieces of metal. The top of it hold a small surface plate. Next to the cabinet are shelfs that hold hold my machinest chest and related tooling.


                          • #14
                   put your short pieces on a shelving unit? Geez...aren't you supposed to have them in piles on the floor and in boxes that you can't find?
                            I wish I could put the lathe out 4 or more feet from the wall.
                            The place I worked at last year, had all the lathes out in the open like that. Sure was nice to work around the machines. It wasn't a very big shop but it has a lathe with about a twenty eight foot bed and some other smaller ones. I recall the shop is 80'X160' or so. A lot bigger than my 20 X24'.
                            I have tools I don't even know I own...