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In over my head on 1st lathe

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  • In over my head on 1st lathe

    Bought that monster below and I am stoked but intimidated. Never used one before. Milling sure but turning, zilch. I know need to get a 3 phase gizmo and I can pull my own power for it. I will need some tooling but is has a few nice necessities. Going to pick it up next Thus. any thoughts, things to look or look-out for, must-haves or recommendations would be IMMENSELY appreciated.


  • #2
    Congratulations on a SERIOUSLY sweet machine ! ! ! ! Even the paint is in decent shape!

    Any idea on the weight? Or are you using a delivery company to get the machine home? Do you know the power rating of the motor yet?

    A big first step will be "leveling" or "truing" the machine to eliminate any arching or twist in the bed. This is a topic rife with hot discussions in the past so perhaps go back and do some searching on "leveling lathe" and "truing lathe bed" to pull up the past "warm" discussions... .

    There's some really great write ups out on the web and on YouTube as well.
    Last edited by BCRider; 04-26-2018, 07:41 PM.
    Chilliwack BC, Canada

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    • #3
      That is one of the great "old American iron" machines everyone is always talking about. Serious industrial quality. Always remember - every machine tool is top heavy when you move it. It will tip over easily, so be super careful moving.

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      • #4
        Very nice lathe! Looks like you have everything there to get started. I see 3-4 QCTP tool holders in the chip tray and one mounted. All you need are the tools. (And Power.) You'll enjoy that lathe and it won't be long before you'll be putting the rest of us to shame.

        You didn't mention the price so I'm holding back on the "You Suck" congratulatory acumen.
        Last edited by CCWKen; 04-26-2018, 07:53 PM. Reason: correction

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        • #5
          Thanks for the kinds words guys. I know very little about it and there is no documentation. I did find some good stuff online and there seems to be some options for manuals (reprints). I know it weighs in over 1400lbs. I don't think it has metric thread cutting gears. Has a legit Aloris tool post. and Buck adjust tru chuck, Jacobs collet chuck and collets, a few other tidbits... so as mentioned above, the import stuff is there. I do appreciate the tips and cautions! Leveling was a good one - need to get a decent level and learn more. On the move it's like this. 6x12 open utility trailer and straps. Seller is a pro and will load it with forklift. At home I will back it right into the garage where it will live, lift a few inches with an engine hoist and drive the trailer right out from under it. Then just lower it in place. Might nudge it a bit once on the ground but won't be moving or swinging the laden hoist at all. Well that's the plan...

          You guys are awesome, thanks again!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Mr-Mike View Post
            At home I will back it right into the garage where it will live, lift a few inches with an engine hoist and drive the trailer right out from under it. Then just lower it in place. Might nudge it a bit once on the ground but won't be moving or swinging the laden hoist at all. Well that's the plan...

            You guys are awesome, thanks again!
            That looks like more than your average engine hoist can handle. Please make absolutely sure you know what you are doing.
            Last edited by rklopp; 04-26-2018, 08:53 PM.

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            • #7
              When I picked up my BP mill, I put heavy planks across the legs of the engine hoist and moved it. I kept just enough tension on the lift straps to keep them taunt. I had to move it over a couple of pretty rough concrete joints about 50'. As long as you don't try to push the hoist sideways, you should be fine. Keep the weight between the legs of the hoist. But maybe my hoist isn't average.

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              • #8
                Congratulations! I see you take 'Go big or go home' to heart.

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                • #9
                  I don't think you can handle the load, Mr-Mike. You should redirect the delivery to my address. PM me and I will give the address.
                  _____________________________________________

                  I would rather have tools that I never use, than not have a tool I need.
                  Oregon Coast

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CCWKen View Post
                    When I picked up my BP mill, I put heavy planks across the legs of the engine hoist and moved it. I kept just enough tension on the lift straps to keep them taunt. I had to move it over a couple of pretty rough concrete joints about 50'. As long as you don't try to push the hoist sideways, you should be fine. Keep the weight between the legs of the hoist. But maybe my hoist isn't average.
                    That's precisely how I've done heavy loads on my own engine hoist and with a little care to keep the pushing down low and direct the axis of the push so it passes through the footprint of the caster "wheelbase" the push has always been within stability limits.

                    As for truing up the lathe read up on it. "Level" is only one set of conditions where the bed is true. You CAN true it up without a level using the "two collar cut" method. When I trued up my own lathe I used a common 2 ft builder's level just to ensure that it was level enough that things would not literally roll off the flat areas. After that it was all about the two collar cut test and tweaking the jacking nuts.

                    To do this so I would not need shims I made up construction block pedestals filled with gravel and concrete with "J" bolt mounting studs cast into the concrete. You have really nice base cabinets though so if I had a lathe like yours and knowing what I do now I'd drill and fit some 5/8" or even 3/4" studs into the floor and use jacking nuts and washers under the cabinets and top nuts and washers to hold the lathe down against the jacking nuts. What I found with my setup like this is that it was almost childishly easy to tweak the twist out and measure down to a crazy small amount of "out of true". It was my first time ever but the process made total sense.

                    Initially I would have been ecstatic if I could cut true to within a half thou over the 8" long test bar I used. In the end it proved so easy to set it and tweak it that I ended up with about a 1/10 to 1/10 and half over 8". And it was reacting so positively to my adjustments I could have chased it down even finer. But the raised "collars" on my test bar were almost down to the relieved part in between so I called it good at that point.

                    Because I started with a builder's level and relied on the test bar cuts so much this resulted in my having to make about 2 dosen skim cuts and measurements. If I had a machinist's level I don't doubt I could have cut that down by a lot. But I don't have one and I didn't see the need for one for anything other than setting up the lathe. Maybe that's short sighted. But they DO say that ignorance is bliss....

                    My own lathe also has four mounting points at the head and two at the tail of the bed similar to your machine but at the base of the pedestals. You can use the "bending" ability that goes with the four points at the head to also tweak out any arcing or swayback in the bed. Again the two collar test led me to that. Once I had matching diameters to within a tenth or so I set up a DTI to read across the top and tweaked the mid bolts at the head end to remove any difference. This too led to some additional diameter test cuts and crown/sway tests to go with them. Part of the roughly 2 dozen final number of skim cuts on the raised collars of the test bar.

                    This setup has held up too. A few months back I had occasion to do a roughly 6 inch long precision pass. The diameters match to less than a tenth even after two years. Although it's possible that the temperature and all that was roughly the same conditions as when it was all tuned up. But it made ME smile...
                    Chilliwack BC, Canada

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                    • #11
                      Boy yeah serious first lathe ! looks like original paint and wear patterns on it which is actually a nice indicator that the thing has not been used to death, nice score...

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                      • #12
                        Congratulations!

                        Nice pallet. How are you going to set it down? Won't the legs of the engine hoist get in the way? of course if you remove the pallet first, you'll have more clearance for the legs.

                        Home Depot seems like about the best of the big three for decent 2" 3300WLL/10k ratchet straps. $9.99 last I bought. Got a 10% discount on a case of six.

                        It will probably be pretty headstock heavy. You're going to want to get the headstock sling as close to the headstock as possible. If you were to wrap it on a crossweb of the bed, you might find that isn't very close to the headstock and won't balance.

                        The hook must be above the CG, and not in the middle of the lift points (a common mistake). For balance it is often necessary for the headstock sling to be shorter - see the link below.

                        If it is loaded on the trailer headstock forward then you might not have sufficient reach with your crane to get the hook over the CG. Maybe you can come in from the side, at an angle to clear the wheels?

                        If you end up shifting the load to the back of the trailer it is a good idea to put blocking or jack stands under the back to keep it stable.

                        It will likely be pretty top heavy. If you rig the slings under the bed they may be below the CG, making it unstable. The pallet will help with that - until you remove it. For that reason some people prefer a choke instead of a basket around the bed.

                        You're going to need to be careful of the leadscrew. I can't tell whether there is clearance for a sling to pass safely behind it, or whether you'll need to block it with wood for protection and go around the outside.

                        Don't forget to protect slings and straps from any hard edges. They can cause instant failure under load. Plenty of zip ties to keep the ratchet straps neat.

                        A quick check of the NJ weather suggests it will be dry. If you need to contend with water it changes some things.

                        https://www.lift-it.com/info_hitches_all.asp

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                        • #13
                          That's a great machine for a first lathe! Be extremely careful how you go about picking it up; lathes are top heavy and like to slip upside down if the the rigging isn't correct.

                          For loading it I suggest something like this to serve as a lifting point:



                          Use a good heavy piece of metal on the bottom and wood like a 2x4 or better yet 4x4 on the ways to protect the ways when you clamp the unit down solid. Having the eye fairly high at roughly the same height or slightly higher than the spindle helps keep everything hanging in a controlled manner. Try to clamp it as close to the head stock as necessary to balance the lathe, even removing the chuck to let you get closer if needed. Run the tail stock and saddle to the end of the lathe and lock them both down solidly.

                          A long time ago I saw a quite large lathe ruined when the workers tried to lift it up with a forklift from the bottom. Being top heavy it didn't take much to unbalance it and it fell over onto the concrete floor and landed on the apron side. I heard it bent the ways by over 30 thousandths...
                          Location: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

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                          • #14
                            Make sure you load the trailer with at least 60% of the weight ahead of the wheels. If you don't, it will start to fishtail going down the road and likely cause a serious accident. I almost crashed 2 times before I figured out what was going on. It's pretty scary when the trailer is whipping the truck side to side.

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                            • #15
                              Nice first lathe. You will enjoy it.

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