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Project: Building the MLA-18 Filing Machine

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  • Another pic to clarify:
    showing the setup with a 3/8 rod in the tail stock chuck,
    using it to align the holes prior to drilling the last one.

    Click image for larger version

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ID:	1948160
    25 miles north of Buffalo NY, USA

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    • It's getting very close to being finished. The work table support legs are basically done, but i have to round over the corners yet. Will probably remove the bulk of material with the angle grinder, and finish with hand filing. I need to shorten the screws for the rear cover -- I had ordered them over-length just in case. Lastly, I need to make and install the bronze bushings for the shafts. And a plug for the bottom hole. I hope to have it together by this weekend.

      I am still debating on how to drive it. Initially I wanted to use the lathe to drive it, making a sub base out of wood for it to set on the ways. I have a spare MT2 blank that I can attach to the input shaft, and drive the machine directly off the spindle. The kit also has a large, heavy pulley casting that can be made into a flat-belt pulley or a V-belt pulley as desired. I may make the pulley as a flat-belt unit just to add mass when it is in operation -- hoping to give smooth motion that way.
      25 miles north of Buffalo NY, USA

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      • Originally posted by nickel-city-fab View Post
        ...I am still debating on how to drive it. Initially I wanted to use the lathe to drive it...
        I would not want to put excess filings on my lathe. Rather drive it with a separate motor.
        12" x 35" Logan 2557V lathe
        Index "Super 55" mill
        18" Vectrax vertical bandsaw
        7" x 10" Vectrax mitering bandsaw
        24" State disc sander

        Comment


        • Originally posted by ezduzit View Post

          I would not want to put excess filings on my lathe. Rather drive it with a separate motor.
          Yes, but not just that. It'd be a bit of a pain to have to hook it up to the lathe motor whenever you wanted to do a small job.

          I mounted mine on a nice piece of oak with a cheap 1/4 hp motor and a switch. Always handy. It sits on top of my TIG welder and that's where I use it.

          -js
          There are no stupid questions. But there are lots of stupid answers. This is the internet.

          Location: SF Bay Area

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          • Originally posted by ezduzit View Post

            I would not want to put excess filings on my lathe. Rather drive it with a separate motor.
            Wouldn't be an issue if he runs it off the change gear end using a long drive shaft.
            21" Royersford Excelsior CamelBack Drillpress Restoration
            1943 Sidney 16x54 Lathe Restoration

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            • Originally posted by The Metal Butcher View Post

              Wouldn't be an issue if he runs it off the change gear end using a long drive shaft.
              Still don't like it.
              12" x 35" Logan 2557V lathe
              Index "Super 55" mill
              18" Vectrax vertical bandsaw
              7" x 10" Vectrax mitering bandsaw
              24" State disc sander

              Comment


              • Why?

                Do you never file on your lathes ez? I do. I certainly don't worry about filing a few feet away. These are chips make from a slow moving process. They fall straight down.

                Anyway, at the end of the day, it doesn't matter what you or I think. Only what NCF does.
                21" Royersford Excelsior CamelBack Drillpress Restoration
                1943 Sidney 16x54 Lathe Restoration

                Comment


                • I do have a variable-speed motor available, with the controller from an old mini-lathe. Just don't feel like screwing around with something like that, and it wouldn't look very good either.

                  My thinking is, filings wouldn't be any worse than what the lathe sees in normal use. It would have to be cleaned every time, but that is no different than how things are right now.

                  My plan was to make a sub-base for the filer to set on, on the ways by casting resin to fit the lathe bed and bolt the filer to that block of resin. If I drove the filer off the spindle, I would use an MT2 blank arbor fastened to the end of the input shaft.

                  One big reason why I'm trying to keep the number of motors down to one is, my "shop" is a spare 10x12 bedroom. If I can use the lathe motor to drive xyz accessories, then it's that much less physical space I am expending. But the trade-off is, need to keep the lathe clean.

                  As it is, I have to be out of town for a day or two, so there's plenty of time to think up ways to do it. It's not cast in stone yet, there are any number of ways I could drive it.

                  I do have a couple feet of space available behind the lathe due to the horizontal drive -- but then I would have to move the surface plate somewhere else.
                  25 miles north of Buffalo NY, USA

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                  • What's the diff between filings and swarf? A lot of swarf is pretty much the same thing.

                    At the end of the day, a lathe is a consumable tool, even though it would be classified as more capital equipment, it will wear out. It's prudent to clean it so it is not prematurely "consumed", but foolish to try to keep it "pristine", since that basically means not using it.
                    2730

                    Keep eye on ball.
                    Hashim Khan

                    Everything not impossible is compulsory

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                    • Originally posted by The Metal Butcher View Post

                      Wouldn't be an issue if he runs it off the change gear end using a long drive shaft.
                      That's actually a pretty cool idea, but I just don't have the space to do that.
                      There is just enough room to open the gear cover door, and then you smack into the wall.
                      Maybe there's a way I can drive it off the far end of the lead screw, but I don't think there would be enough RPM's.

                      I love the way clickspring has his setup, but I don't have that much physical space available --
                      my whole shop is in a spare 10x12 bedrooom.
                      Take a look at his setup: http://www.clickspringprojects.com/d...g-machine.html
                      ... is that just beautiful or what? The way he works makes me drool.....
                      If I get the floor jack and move the lathe to the middle of the room,, I could use the bench space behind the rear drive.
                      Last edited by nickel-city-fab; 06-24-2021, 12:07 AM.
                      25 miles north of Buffalo NY, USA

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                      • Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
                        What's the diff between filings and swarf? A lot of swarf is pretty much the same thing.

                        At the end of the day, a lathe is a consumable tool, even though it would be classified as more capital equipment, it will wear out. It's prudent to clean it so it is not prematurely "consumed", but foolish to try to keep it "pristine", since that basically means not using it.
                        Yes, thank you for understanding. I thinks it is highly unlikely that I will wear out the lathe in my foreseeable lifetime.
                        And it's already 75 yrs old, it was just extremely well cared-for in its past life.
                        There is no detectable wear on the ways although the flaking has faded and worn off in the middle.
                        25 miles north of Buffalo NY, USA

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                        • Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
                          What's the diff between filings and swarf?...
                          This is a good and pertinent question. They are not the same.

                          Swarf is generally large metal "strings" and chips that you can easily brush off the machine and literally scoop up in your hand. The filings produced by a (especially fine) file are more microscopic and dust-like, and are really something you don't want migrating into your machine.

                          While all/most of us use files during the general process of using a lathe, I would not want to intentionally place my lathe in a position where it received ALL the filings from a dedicated filing machine. That just doesn't make any sense at all.
                          12" x 35" Logan 2557V lathe
                          Index "Super 55" mill
                          18" Vectrax vertical bandsaw
                          7" x 10" Vectrax mitering bandsaw
                          24" State disc sander

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by ezduzit View Post

                            This is a good and pertinent question. They are not the same.

                            Swarf is generally large metal "strings" and chips that you can easily brush off the machine and literally scoop up in your hand. The filings produced by a (especially fine) file are more microscopic and dust-like, and are really something you don't want migrating into your machine.

                            While all/most of us use files during the general process of using a lathe, I would not want to intentionally place my lathe in a position where it received ALL the filings from a dedicated filing machine. That just doesn't make any sense at all.
                            I guess your machining is limited to certain materials.

                            Do some cast iron, and you will suddenly find that what you wrote in the quoted post is not exactly correct.... And, some other metals crumble a bit, even when much of the material is in strings.

                            No.... They ARE the same, and you are being a bit over the top, IMO.

                            To each their own, mine is a tool, not a museum piece nor a rare antique to be preserved at all costs. I DO keep the grinders at the far end of the building, with two doors between. Grit is a different thing entirely.
                            2730

                            Keep eye on ball.
                            Hashim Khan

                            Everything not impossible is compulsory

                            Comment


                            • My lathes in fact ARE museum pieces . But I use them for machining mostly stainless and aluminum.
                              12" x 35" Logan 2557V lathe
                              Index "Super 55" mill
                              18" Vectrax vertical bandsaw
                              7" x 10" Vectrax mitering bandsaw
                              24" State disc sander

                              Comment


                              • I do the grinding outdoors entirely, but the lathe gets wiped down and oiled every use.
                                25 miles north of Buffalo NY, USA

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