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Newbie needs chuck selection help

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  • Newbie needs chuck selection help

    Hi all

    I need a 4 jaw independent chuck for a steam engine project I am making.

    I have a 7x10 mini lathe and according to the info in the “little Machine Shop” it seems that a 5” diameter chuck should fit on the lathe. The cost is about the same as a 4" diam. Is there a down side to buying the 5” jaw chuck for this lathe over the 4”?? What am I missing??

    Many thanks

    Ken K1UM

  • #2
    It seems to me as though you should be okay with a 5" chuck, but I think it's difficult to make a definitive statement about it. "Fit" and "be in proportion to the rest of the lathe" are two different things, and the latter is hard to quantify.

    For example, I could probably fit an 8" chuck on my 10K, but I think a 6" chuck is actually a more appropriate size. Others might disagree.

    One thing that might come into play is clearance for the cross slide; will the cross slide go under a 4" chuck, but not a 5" chuck? The cross slide doesn't necessarily HAVE to fit under the chuck, but it might be worth thinking about.
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    • #3
      another thought

      Looking at the same question myself. Thinking that 11 lbs for the 5 in diameter chuck is adding quite a bit of metal vs a more reasonable - imo - 7 lbs for the smaller one. But, there is that extra inch of capacity...

      Aside: pls post back with your choice & how it works out.


      • #4
        A 4 inch chuck on a 7 x 10 lathe is a nice compromise. Yes, it's heavier, but mine's had no problems spinning it. The controller uses a soft start, so it spins up slowly anyway.

        A larger chuck usually has a larger bore, which may be nice.

        With a 5 inch chuck your jaws will protrude an inch when holding a piece that is about 2 or 3 inches diameter. They will hit the ways much sooner than you think that they will.

        The end result is that a larger chuck will not always let you work on larger pieces. It will do a better job when holding a large piece from the inside.

        I leave my 4 inch, 4 jaw independent on my 7x12 lathe most of the time.

        At the end of the project, there is a profound difference between spare parts and extra parts.


        • #5

          Thanks for the guidence.... I have decided to go with the 4 jaw chuck from the Little Machine Shop...



          • #6
            Going With 4" Chuck!!!

            Chris at Little Machine Shop told me that 5" chuck is simply too big for 7x10 HF lathe!!


            • #7
              Good to know, I am pondering a 4-jaw too.
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              • #8
                4 Jaw Chucks

                Hi Ken
                I suggest that you take a look at Varmint Al's web-site.
                When you get there click on 4 Jaw Chucks at the top of the page.
                You will find useful information there.


                • #9
                  More on chucks

                  Hi Again

                  I believe you will find just about all you want to know about chucks and backing plates for your 7 series lathes here.
                  Last edited by Yankee1; 02-10-2009, 12:19 AM. Reason: misspelled a word


                  • #10
                    Great, Thanks