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  • New 4 jaw needed - Shopping advice please

    Guys,

    It's been a while since I've posted. It's been over 100 degrees quite often here in NC and I just haven't been in the shop much this summer however I think that's starting to change.

    I need your help today. I need to get a 4 jaw chuck on my Victor 1640B lathe to compliment the 3 jaw that came with it (I didn't get the 4 jaw at the auction). I'm going to be using it mainly for gunsmithing work, turning crowns, threading barrels, etc. My lathe has a D1-6 (sorta greek to me) headstock. I need the 4 jaw so I can really dial in for this gunsmithing stuff. My question is, where would you guys recommend I go searching for a chuck? I would think Ebay would be ok, since you are manually dialing in the precision anyway vs a 3 jaw. This seems kind of eclectic for Craigslist.

    I've never used a 4 jaw so like most of what I do here, it's a learning experience. Since I'm doing barrels/actions/etc. should I buy a small chuck or should I buy something big enough to do other work? I would think a full size chuck makes sense just for the capability.

    I really don't want to spend what my lathe cost on some uber fantastic brand new chuck as this is really a hobby for me and I'm more of a tinkerer/gunsmith/student than a machinist, but I don't want something that I have to build/rebuild to be able to use it.

    So my questions are:
    Did I give you enough information that you can recommend a brand/type of chuck and if so what is it?
    Should I get a full sized chuck, or a small chuck (not sure they have a D1-6 small chuck)
    Is there some simple back plate/work around where I should use a different chuck setup for some reason? I really don't even know what D1-6 even means, just that it's the spec on the website for Victor. Is there a smart work around?
    Where should I be shopping for your recommendation? Website?

    Thanks everyone in advance for helping out this perpetual newbie.
    Dan from Raleigh, NC

    If it's stupid but it works, it's not stupid.
    _____________________
    "What is your host's purpose for the party? Surely not for you to enjoy yourself; if that were their sole purpose, they'd have sent champagne and women over to your place by taxi." P.J. O'Rourke

  • #2
    The D1-6 is just the style of mount for chucks, faceplates, etc., to the spindle. There are several sizes: D1-4, D1-5, D1-6, etc., all of which mount to the spindle in the same way, using a camlock system.
    ("Size" refers to the mount, and therefore indirectly to the size of tooling to be mounted, as well as the spindle size.)

    This link shows some info: http://www.hhip.com/products/product...ID=900-0046-06

    (oops, maybe there isn't a D1-5. But basically that last digit is defining the size.)

    My view on it: I'd get a chuck sized to take advantage of the full capacity of the lathe, UNLESS you know for abolutely, no kidding, carved in stone certainty that your work will always fall within some smaller envelope.
    OR..., the weight of the maximum sized chuck would be unacceptable to you.

    Since the 4 jaw is manually dialed in for maximum precision (minimum runout), you can get better service from less expensive versions, relatively speaking, than would be the case with 3 jaw chucks, since the runout on those will depend altogether on the quality of the chuck itself.

    My lathe doesn't use the D1-... mounting system, but I'm pretty sure you can get generic D1-... backplates for mounting a plainback chuck.

    Yep, here's one: http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INSRIT?P...PMPXNO=1631722

    You can check out www.mscdirect.com or
    these folks (they'll have everything) : http://www.mcmaster.com

    There are many other suppliers as well, some of which are likely to have better prices (or maybe not). Try googling "lathe tooling" or some such, maybe "lathe D series back plate". I'm sure a lot of vendors will pop up.

    (added)
    NOTE: that Bison back plate shown in the Enco link I provided is by no means their least expensive. I just happened to pick that one as an example. Tho Bison products are considered quite good.
    Last edited by lynnl; 08-24-2010, 12:49 PM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by lynnl
      My view on it: I'd get a chuck sized to take advantage of the full capacity of the lathe, UNLESS you know for absolutely, no kidding, carved in stone certainty that your work will always fall within some smaller envelope.
      OR..., the weight of the maximum sized chuck would be unacceptable to you.

      Since the 4 jaw is manually dialed in for maximum precision (minimum runout), you can get better service from less expensive versions, relatively speaking, than would be the case with 3 jaw chucks, since the runout on those will depend altogether on the quality of the chuck itself.
      what you're paying for, imo, with a new quality chuck is whether the jaws, when tightened, are still parallel to the lathe's axis - in other words you can adjust the circle to be in centre, true, but will the cylinder?

      Its a dilemma, price out a new Rohm or even a Bison and you'll want to have somewhere to sit down. otoh whats more frustrating than than working with something askew? Probably that old maxim get the best you can afford is applicable. If the jaws don't fit the chuck well from excessive wear, the best Rohm or Pratt off of ebay isn't going to be much better than the worst Chineese chuck...i'd be a little leary of sight unseen ebay purchases on a item that goes from great to useless depending how much difficult-to-visually-detect wear is present. Better to watch the classifieds at Practical Machinist; prices are very good and because the sellers generally part of crowd, I'd say there's quite a bit of honor; at least I've never been disappointed or treated badly (well once but not that bad lol). that or kijiji where you can inspect it.

      Lynn to your point, the answer is have many chucks....I agree first should be biggest, but a D1 6 4 jaw is going to be say 10" or bigger. I empathize with the OP, those big jaws are difficult to work with when holding small pieces but I don't think you'll find an off the shelf small D1 6 4 jaw. Its a bit of a pita to improvise too as those 6 7/8" pins don't leave much room for the back plate mounting holes on say a 6" chuck
      .

      Comment


      • #4
        Yeah, I didn't mean to imply "cheap" is just as good as the near top of the line stuff. That's why I added "relatively speaking", i.e. relative the the 3 jaw issue, where, I'd think, the quality would be more critical.

        As for the size/weight/cumbersome issue, I'm 66 and certainly not as strong in the hands and arms as when I wore a younger man's clothes, but I find my 8" chuck still very manageable - both weight and convenience. But I would not want to wrestle with a 10 incher. And if I had 6 inchers that would serve the purpose at hand, I'd select those when I needed to swap out.

        In my (very limited) experience tho, the 4 jaws tend to be considerably lighter than the 3 jaws, if that might help the OP's decision making. But I imagine that D series mount adds substantial weight, beyond the thread mount which I have.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Mcgyver
          what you're paying for, imo, with a new quality chuck is whether the jaws, when tightened, are still parallel to the lathe's axis - in other words you can adjust the circle to be in centre, true, but will the cylinder?

          Its a dilemma, price out a new Rohm or even a Bison and you'll want to have somewhere to sit down. otoh whats more frustrating than than working with something askew? Probably that old maxim get the best you can afford is applicable. If the jaws don't fit the chuck well from excessive wear, the best Rohm or Pratt off of ebay isn't going to be much better than the worst Chineese chuck...i'd be a little leary of sight unseen ebay purchases on a item that goes from great to useless depending how much difficult-to-visually-detect wear is present. Better to watch the classifieds at Practical Machinist; prices are very good and because the sellers generally part of crowd, I'd say there's quite a bit of honor; at least I've never been disappointed or treated badly (well once but not that bad lol). that or kijiji where you can inspect it.
          Exactly what I was going to say - only better!

          I do have one thing to add: Look for a four jaw chuck that has slots cut in it. I find them very useful - sort of a backing plate, four jaw chuck hybrid.

          Comment


          • #6
            I use an enco 4 jaw and have no problems with it. Make sure to make a spider for the back of your head stock for longer barrels. Where in Raleigh do you live?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Fasttrack
              Exactly what I was going to say - only better!

              I do have one thing to add: Look for a four jaw chuck that has slots cut in it. I find them very useful - sort of a backing plate, four jaw chuck hybrid.
              What slots are you talking about? ...something to permit use as a faceplate?

              Are these slots between the slots the jaws ride in? Or are you referring to the jaw slots?

              I don't recall seeing any with extra slots, but then there's a lot I haven't seen.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by ranger302
                I use an enco 4 jaw and have no problems with it. Make sure to make a spider for the back of your head stock for longer barrels. Where in Raleigh do you live?
                I'm in Garner, actually, so South of Raleigh.

                A spider for the back of the chuck? What I've seen is basically a shop made 4 jaw chuck which is mounted to the other side of the headstock, basically a locked in place (with the spindle) steady rest so both ends of the barrel are trued and locked in place. Of course, my lathe is longer than the barrels I have looked at so far so I do need to know about the spider.
                Dan from Raleigh, NC

                If it's stupid but it works, it's not stupid.
                _____________________
                "What is your host's purpose for the party? Surely not for you to enjoy yourself; if that were their sole purpose, they'd have sent champagne and women over to your place by taxi." P.J. O'Rourke

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you are going to at least LOOK at used stuff, try Plaza Machinery. Joe has a good selection, and is also a dealer for Bison.
                  Duffy, Gatineau, Quebec

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by lynnl
                    What slots are you talking about? ...something to permit use as a faceplate?

                    Are these slots between the slots the jaws ride in? Or are you referring to the jaw slots?

                    I don't recall seeing any with extra slots, but then there's a lot I haven't seen.

                    I have a couple of 12" Cushman chucks with T-slots between the jaws. It's pretty handy. Let me see if I can dig up a picture of the chuck...



                    I've actually used them on several occasions. I think they are more useful than a faceplate or a four jaw. I've found myself using two or three jaws and then some bolts/clamp set to hold a strangely shaped part. The jaws make centering a strange shape easier but the slots give the flexibility of a faceplate.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Fasttrack
                      I have a couple of 12" Cushman chucks with T-slots between the jaws. It's pretty handy.

                      I've actually used them on several occasions. I think they are more useful than a faceplate or a four jaw. I've found myself using two or three jaws and then some bolts/clamp set to hold a strangely shaped part. The jaws make centering a strange shape easier but the slots give the flexibility of a faceplate.
                      Those do look pretty snazzy. Cushman, eh? Ok, now I have a brand to search for.

                      Btw, part of my reason for asking on here is I went to Enco's website Sunday, Monday, and today and it said the website was not available. I clicked on a link provided in this thread and it came right up. Of course, now it comes up at the main page. Was I the only one who couldn't get on their website? How am I gonna be a gunsmith if I can't even work this interweb thingy?
                      Dan from Raleigh, NC

                      If it's stupid but it works, it's not stupid.
                      _____________________
                      "What is your host's purpose for the party? Surely not for you to enjoy yourself; if that were their sole purpose, they'd have sent champagne and women over to your place by taxi." P.J. O'Rourke

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Fasttrack
                        I have a couple of 12" Cushman chucks with T-slots between the jaws. It's pretty handy. Let me see if I can dig up a picture of the chuck...
                        neat chucks - are you man handling those 12" chuck regularly? I've a three jaw that big and dread it....10" is more in the comfort zone and as entropy advances things will go down from there...if I was swapping 12's all the time a hoist would move up the priority list rather quickly!
                        .

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          thanx for the pix and clarification Fasttrack.
                          Can't remember if I've seen such animals before or not. They look somewhat familiar, now that I see the pictures.

                          Yeah I can see where those slots would be handy.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I have an 8" 4 jaw with an integral D1-4 mounting. It weighs 42lbs.

                            I would recommend an intregral mount as it shaves quite a bit of the total weight. As well, the overhang is less. The other thing to consider is that usually 4 jaw independant chucks get far less use than a 3 jaw so the used option may be ok.

                            Geoff

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Well I found a cushman 12" 4 jaw with T-slots on ebay. It looked like it had been outside since the 50s and may have been run over with a tank, but it was only $1600 so...

                              Back to Enco I go!
                              Dan from Raleigh, NC

                              If it's stupid but it works, it's not stupid.
                              _____________________
                              "What is your host's purpose for the party? Surely not for you to enjoy yourself; if that were their sole purpose, they'd have sent champagne and women over to your place by taxi." P.J. O'Rourke

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