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Questions from a new guy...

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  • Questions from a new guy...

    First i would like to say "hello" to everyone. i have been browsing this site for a long time, and finally just subscribed to it a couple days ago.

    question 1:
    So i bought a Busy Bee 10 x 18 lathe in January, and it took 4 guys to get it into my parents basement. As of the 16th, i am going to be a first time homeowner, and now i need to get this lathe out of my parents basement, and into my own. the stairs into the basement of my house, have a 180* bend in the middle. does anyone know of an "easier" way of moving this thing? to move it before, we bolted 2x4s to it and carried it like a stretcher.

    question 2:
    im building a "tiny" project, and i need to drill the smallest holes i can. i have #80 bits, but i cant hold then in my drill chuck on my tail post. how do i hold the bits? is it because i got a cheap chuck, or is there something im missing??

    thanks for the suggestions.

  • #2
    Small chucks exist for tiny drills. "Cheap" isn't the problem, larger chucks just are not made with thin enough jaw faces, that wouldn't work as well.

    There are chucks that will go to "zero diameter", or close to it, but they usually hold no more than a 0.250" drill.

    As for moving, looks like you may have to put the thing on end to make the turn. if the stairs are open, maybe you can go right over the railing and then lower it.

    10 x 18 should be able to be about carried by one big guy.... not a real problem to move. Cinch down or remove everything that can come loose, and do the deed. Carry down to the "landing", then up on one end. Scoot over, lower down to carrying position, and finish moving it.
    CNC machines only go through the motions.

    Ideas expressed may be mine, or from anyone else in the universe.
    Not responsible for clerical errors. Or those made by lay people either.
    Number formats and units may be chosen at random depending on what day it is.
    I reserve the right to use a number system with any integer base without prior notice.
    Generalizations are understood to be "often" true, but not true in every case.


    • #3
      Let me be the first to welcome you to the nuthouse.

      #2 first- not many chucks I've seen can hold a bit less than 1/16 diameter, and only a few can hold 1/32. You'll probably need what's called a pin chuck for those smaller sizes. That can be held in the larger chuck. Good luck in not losing those huge bits.
      #1- 4 guys hanging onto a lathe going downstairs around a corner- could be a challenge. I had a similar problem with my 8x18. The bottom of the stairs has a sharp left turn to make. I laid some 2x4s across the stairs and skidded the lathe down that using rope and pulleys to control the weight. At the bottom I just skidded the end around and slowly let the rope out until it was turned and ready to be dragged into the workshop. I had no help to do this, so it was slow and methodical. I had a pair of 2x4s across the doorway to tie the pulleys to.

      With 4 guys you could have 2 controlling a rope, and one on each end of the lathe to control its skid path.

      I'm just envisioning 4 substantial guys and a multi-hundred pound lathe occupying the stairs at the same time. You might want to consider whether the stairs can actually handle that.
      I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-


      • #4
        Welcome Dragonsfire....

        Welcome to our little piece of the world....We are a mixed lot from many places. Also lots of experience & knowledge here. I've learned alot, complained a bit and maybe helped a few....Anyhow, enjoy it. What got you interested in machining, lathe work etc. ? If you bought a machine at Busy Bee, guess you're another Canadian. (me too, and a few more on here)
        1)As for moving the lathe down stairs with a change of direction (landing), can you lash it to a fridge dolly (appliance cart) and move it almost standing on end ? Take off the tailstock & carriage if you can to reduce weight a bit. I've moved a 13" SouthBend lathe (1800 lb.), a large drill press & a Rockwell mill (900-1000 lb.) in & out of basements using an appliance cart & an engine hoist and taking them apart. Moral of the storey is the Home Shop Machinist should ALWAYS buy a house or townhouse with grade level entry garages or basements. Even better, a heated seperate shop building.....and a forklift....
        Strong friends and beer help too.
        Either that or get little machines that one person can move like bench drill presses & Atlas lathes.
        2) Drilling little holes. Chances are the drill chuck you have can't close far enough to hold a #80 drill. You'll need to get a smaller drill chuck, pin chuck or some type of collet rig to hold something that small. Yes, the Bee does sell pin chucks that could be held in a regular drill chuck. # 80 drills are DELICATE and best used in a "sensitive" drill press but not everyone has one. Use high speed when drilling and go easy if you're drilling from your lathe tailstock. "Peck like a mad chicken" somebody once said on here....
        Welcome & enjoy the hobby. I hope you keep up the interest and add to your collection of tools & equipment as the years go by. It's an interesting hobby/ addiction with many facets from repair & maintenance, a home based business to building models & engines, restoring cars & bikes, steam power, firearms, to just restoring & collecting old machines.....


        • #5
          OK, by actual test, a new old stock Jacobs #1A chuck grabbed a #80 drill tight.

          For some reason, a much smaller Jacobs #0 chuck would NOT grab it. Difference in machining, or possibly jaw wear, the #0 isn't new.

          The #1A is a bit out of scale, the #80 sure looks thin when in that chuck.

          Both chucks quote "0" as minimum diameter.
          CNC machines only go through the motions.

          Ideas expressed may be mine, or from anyone else in the universe.
          Not responsible for clerical errors. Or those made by lay people either.
          Number formats and units may be chosen at random depending on what day it is.
          I reserve the right to use a number system with any integer base without prior notice.
          Generalizations are understood to be "often" true, but not true in every case.


          • #6
            Thanks for the replies.

            I got into this hobby mostly cause i like working with my hands. ever since i can remember, i was taking my dads stuff apart and getting into trouble for it!!! in high school when i took a welding class, we had a dusty old lathe in the back, so i cleaned it up and turned some aluminum on it. i took a design class in post secondary, and we had a whole class on using a lathe. a few years later i finally got my own.

            i thought about using a fridge dolly, but i was just kind of curious as to whether there were any other ways that i just wasn't getting. for those of you who don't know, the busy bee 10x18 is a gear head lathe, and they say the shipping weight is around 350lbs.

            i ended up sticking a collet from my dremel tool into my chuck, and it held enough for what i needed to do. but i completely expected all of you to say that there is smaller chucks meant for small drills.
            i tried " bigger" bits in my chuck, and i can fit down to a #73 in my $10 chuck.


            • #7
              Regarding the lathe move...

              I'd just break it down to manageable pieces. This will serve two purposes...

              - It will allow you to move the lathe without harming yourself or more importantly, harming it .

              - It will force you to clean it up and make sure everything is in good working order - you know, preventative maintenance - something that many of us seldom do.
              Last edited by Mike Burdick; 07-03-2007, 02:01 PM.


              • #8
                Questions from a new guy...

                Welcome aboard Dragonfire,

                The keyless chucks, like the 1- 1/8" albrecht (and knockoffs) work very well with the 61 thru 80 bits. One thing that I found really handy when using those small bits on the lathe was to put a magnet on the apron so that when you took the drill from the chuck I wouldn't loose it. They are so small and short that they dissappear if you lay them on the machine apron.

                Good luck with the move!
                Jim (KB4IVH)

                Only fools abuse their tools.


                • #9
                  Look for a "Finger Chuck".
                  Best way to go for really small bits under 1/16".
                  Your machine provides the torque and your fingers provides the feed.
                  Allows for a really fine touch.
                  Just don't buy the cheep ones. They usually have lateral slop.
                  Ive seen them from $7 to $435.
                  For fun look at the $435 one at, #06351241.
                  Also look in for their "Micro Drill Adapters".
                  Looks like some nice ones for much cheaper.

                  Tom M.


                  • #10
                    id have to say the 10x18 busy bee lathe is a dream of a lathe i have had mine a few months now and have been making all kinds of stuff on it i mostly use it for my airgun mod parts but have also gotten into other stuff as well now with, its a very heavey beast as well 350 lbs heavy and it takes a few guys to move it other wise you could hurt your self other wise, i cant waite to get my busy bee mill as well , its alot more weight then the lathe so iam going to have to find a good way to get it on the bench but iam sure it will go up fine..
                    as for the drill thing i also have a 3/8 chuch i use when i need to i have a metabo 5/8 chuck and a groz taper for it and it works really slick also might want to pic your self up the HD revolving centrer as well that busy bee has and their adjustable tool post holder set up as well its also very slick and works great as well ..

                    any how a decent cheap 3/8 chuck and a taper for it should solve the small drill bit problem for you as well


                    • #11

                      Something along these lines for capability of small holes anytime you need.
                      Has .500" dia shank hold in larger chuck, you can use it in a collet on the mill too!

                      Les H.
                      The Impossible Takes Just A Little Bit Longer!


                      • #12
                        I use a small chuck I've had laying around that looks like it came off of a small drill? I purchased the 3/8-24 threaded to 2MT arbor for it from Victor Machinery.
                        "The men the American people admire most extravagantly are the greatest liars; the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth." H. L. Mencken

                        "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed, second it is violently opposed, and third, it is accepted as self-evident."

                        "When fear rules, reason and logic are ruled out."


                        • #13
                          Wow. lots of replies.. i almost cant keep up. i kinda assumed there was a small chuck for the small drills.

                          because im getting my first house, i cant afford all the other fancy tools, so it looks like im going to have to make do with what i have for now..

                          my big thing now is trying to find new small projects to make with what i can find and what i already have.

                          i have a 1/12 scale '68 vette model that i have been thinking about making into a transformer robot..

                          i used to work at a hobby shop, so i have piles of small models and parts laying around. i usually use aluminum because i like the way it turns, but the biggest stock i have is 1". i started building small robots about a year ago, and i got the lathe just after christmas. i also havea drill press with a compound vise that works as a cheap milling machine. i have built a few wobbler air engines with the lathe and "mill".

                          so if anyone has any great ideas for simple projects, let me know...

                          thanks for the help...


                          • #15
                            Welcome to the board. In an effort to make sure you can come back again and again, I'd suggest you offer your stairway some moral support before you put the weight of the lathe and all of your friends on it at the same time. Should be easy enough to do with 2x4's under it in key places.

                            Congratulations on the move! Most of us were likely thin on tooling when we first started out. Getting tooled up takes more than money, it takes time. Keep in mind that if you want something you don't have and keep thinking on it, it somehow will gravitate in your direction! Friends get to learn of your interest and inform you of goodies they think you may have an interest in. Just make sure none of them are machinist
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