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5c collet block in a lathe chuck?

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  • 5c collet block in a lathe chuck?

    Is there any reason not to put a collet block in a four jaw lathe chuck or any particular things I should be aware of? Obviously a collet chuck is preferred but that is not in the cards at the moment.

    Bought a cheapo set from Enco and will be putting them to use soon.

    Thanks

    Jim

  • #2
    No reason not to as long as your chuck is large enough to handle it.

    Comment


    • #3
      I do it (mount them in the 4 jaw) from time to time.

      Where they really shine is when I use them in my milling machine lathe attachment. Then I can make all kinds of small parts.

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      • #4
        After indicating in the collet bore, you may be surprised to find how much the center of the collet bore is offset from the center of the collet block....

        - Bart
        Bart Smaalders
        http://smaalders.net/barts

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        • #5
          Re: 5C Collet Blocks

          Jim...The 6 sided block is the best "poor man's collet head" for a three jaw chuck that you could ever want. I had not ever used the square one in a 4 jaw before but that would be great when doing eccentric parts such as cams.
          Jim (KB4IVH)

          Only fools abuse their tools.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Scishopguy
            Jim...The 6 sided block is the best "poor man's collet head" for a three jaw chuck that you could ever want. I had not ever used the square one in a 4 jaw before but that would be great when doing eccentric parts such as cams.
            I do it all the time, easier than changing to 5C chuck for 1 or 2 parts.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by barts
              After indicating in the collet bore, you may be surprised to find how much the center of the collet bore is offset from the center of the collet block....
              That will be an interesting thing to check. Are you saying that because it is a cheap set?
              In any case I intend to indicated off the work piece so it should not make much difference the inaccuracies of the collet block/collet combination, eh?

              Jim

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              • #8
                Is there no chance you could score the collet or chuck jaws with this.I mean it sounds like a good idea, never tried it though myself.I have some straight collet er chucks that can be used this way without problem.Alistair
                Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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                • #9
                  Make sure your 4 jaw chuck is big enough to get a good grip on the collet block (the jaw clamping area being at least 1/4 the length of the collet block), otherwise your tool may dig in and push the block out of center.

                  Also if your collet block is import quality your jaws may dig into the flat surfaces and you will have to stone out the burrs.

                  Ask me how I know all this.

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                  • #10
                    Used mine in my 12 in lathe many times for short odd jobs where putting in collet closer takes too long.

                    No dings in mine.. I would never clamp a nice ground surface with chuck jaws.

                    I always use some brass pads. A strip of tape holds them in place.

                    My 3 jaw collects dust, in 5 years it has been on lathe twice...
                    Don't have much hex stock to work with at loose tolerances around here...

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                    • #11
                      Guys,

                      Help out a newbie here,

                      I don't get it. As I understand it, the purpose of using collets on a lathe is to achieve repeatable concentricity in a series of parts. It should eliminate the need to "dial in" your chuck after each part change. If you use a collet block in your 3 or 4 jaw chuck, don't you have to remove the collet block from the chuck each time you change parts (to loosen and re-tighten the collet nut)?

                      If so, doesn't this defeat the purpose of the collet system? I mean you must re-center the chuck when you re-install the loaded collet closer anyway don't you?

                      I am really not trying to be a smart ass, I am hoping you can enlighten me as I have wondered before if this was a viable alternative to a collet closer system or collet chuck.

                      All the best,

                      Tim

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                      • #12
                        I would think that it is being used for small delicate parts.

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                        • #13
                          Just recently got the square and hex 5C blocks. They don't hold as well as the Collet closer on the lathe. I was trying to hold some 3/4 all thread and it kept slipping back into the collet. I put a lot more torque tightening the spanner than I do on the lathe closer. Would be interested in any new/old tricks to keep this from happening. In the future I will probably just take the chuck off and install the collet closer.
                          Byron Boucher
                          Burnet, TX

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                          • #14
                            I dont think you will be able to chuck on all thread so tight that it isnt possible to move under a heavy cut.

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                            • #15
                              I have what I think is a good solution for collets on my lathe:
                              http://metalworkingathome.com/?p=14

                              The original MT3 collet holder fits the spindle bore as well as my mill quill, and now the collets also fit my 5C holders. And I have the square and hex 5C holder as well. And a spin indexer, come to think of it.
                              Last edited by dp; 12-06-2009, 08:57 PM.

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