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  • Atlas/Craftsman 6"

    Slowly I have been cleaning and adjusting mine plus making a new stand and motor mount . The other day my head stock bushings showed up , disassembly is easy and it's good to do it once in a while and lube the backgear bushings . Anyhow the head stock on the 6" is different from the 618 as the 6" has bushings and the 618 has Timkin roller bearings in the head stock , so the assembly is just put the new bushings in clamp down the head stock clamps adjust end play and your done . Unfortunately for me not so simple , my spindle is worn .003 per side at the chuck and about half that at the other end . My fix , I split the bushing on one side and drilled a oil hole on both bushings . I now can clamp down enough to get spindle wobble down to .0005 , less if I want to . One problem with this is the spindle gets off center with the tail stock , I can live with that . I am having a blast getting this machine up to speed , when I got a hold of it it was in sorry shape . On my next purchase for it I hope to find a pair of original legs to set the little beast on .

    DSCF2342 by mark westi, on Flickr

  • #2
    I have the Craftman 618 model with the Timkin roller bearings & have enjoyed it more than my others. I see you have the milling attachment that's worth $200-$250 on Ebay. Congrats! You'll have a blast with it. Atlas is still in Kalamazoo under Clausing & if you need a motor a ConSew 3/4 HP variable speed , reverse DC commercial With a light & brake is $99/shipped from ebay & it plugs right in a 120V recept.
    Last edited by flylo; 05-04-2018, 10:54 PM.
    "Let me recommend the best medicine in the
    world: a long journey, at a mild season, through a pleasant
    country, in easy stages."
    ~ James Madison

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    • #3
      That Craftsman/Atlas 6" is a nice little starter lathe. It was my first metal lathe that I bought a the age of 17 (1957) years old from the money made working at a local hobby shop summers and on weekends. My dad wanted me to use the money to buy a new shotgun as he was a hunter, but I guess my choice was a great disappointment to him. I remember mom and dad asking me where I was going to put it. I replied "in my room". They said absolutely "No, too much mess!" I pleaded "I won't make a mess", but I ended up in the basement. They were right. Later on I upgraded to a Emco Maximat in 1969. I still have and use that machine. Ah, the memories!

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      • #4
        I may have the legs. give some dimensions.

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        • #5
          Very good little lathes that still hold great resale value. Would'nt be without mine.

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          • #6
            Markwesti,
            I somewhere have an article on building a Norton gearbox for a 6" Atlas, I think it was for the later model. If you are interested I could look for it.

            Steve

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            • #7
              Hey guys thanks for all the reply's . flylo , yeah I was glad to get that milling attachment , the one bit of tooling I didn't get was a steady rest . I see them all the time on the bay for 200.-300. Fortunately the motor I have is fine it's a 1/4 hp oldie but goodie . Steve Steven , that sounds very interesting I know for sure I would never go that route but I would like the see it .
              As you all know the steam punkers have cornered the market on machine tool legs , but that ship has pretty much sailed . Here is what they look like . .https://losangeles.craigslist.org/lg...574663027.html
              The one concession I made (because I like vintage) is I bought a QCTP . here is a up date picture
              DSCF2431 by mark westi, on Flickr
              Last edited by markwesti; 05-05-2018, 12:33 PM.

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              • #8
                markwesti,

                What brand are the freewheels?

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                • #9
                  Hi John , us freewheel guys gotta stick together , right ? Haha , L to R Shimano 600 21-15 , Regina 23-13 , Shimano Singapore 28-14 . They are all 6 spd. The Shimano 600 I bought off the bay but it wasn't high enough . The Regina I forgot why I have that , probably was on a wheel set I bought . The last one was on my Centurion IM , but I don't ride hills anymore so I put a Shimano high spd. (corn cob) on it . If you would like to see some of my bikes please stop in here , just type my name in the browse bar . https://www.pedalroom.com/

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by markwesti View Post
                    ..., the one bit of tooling I didn't get was a steady rest . I see them all the time on the bay for 200.-300.
                    Are you inclined to build your own?

                    Pictures and basic dimensions for an Atlas 618 Steady / Follow Rest appear in post #35 of the following thread

                    Stuff for Atlas 618?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by 1-800miner View Post
                      I may have the legs. give some dimensions.
                      They look just like the yellow ones.

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                      • #12
                        EddyCurr , I would prefer to purchase as I don't have a mill . Just saving up , in a couple of months my SS is going to kick in and that will make things a little easier . Like everybody else gotta pay bill first .
                        1-800miner , then those are the ones . As far as I know Atlas only made one size and they have M6 cast into them . I heard but I'm not sure at one time (later?) Atlas made them out of Zamac .

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                        • #13
                          Markwesti,
                          I have looked and can't find the article on the Norton box. It was in an old (1970's) issue of a short lived mag called I think Popular Machining.

                          Here is an article I found:
                          http://vintagemachinery.org/pubs/51/7158.pdf


                          Steve

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by markwesti View Post
                            Originally posted by EddyCurr
                            Originally posted by markwesti View Post
                            ..., the one bit of tooling I didn't get was a steady rest . I see them all the time on the bay for 200.-300.
                            Are you inclined to build your own?
                            EddyCurr , I would prefer to purchase as I don't have a mill . Just saving up , ...
                            If time, space, patience and funds permit, then consider being open to purchasing a second complete machine if one turns up w/ a steady and possibly other desirable components.

                            In the long run, buying the complete machine for the steady, et al, and then selling off (as a package or piece-meal) what you don't intend to keep may be less costly than buying only the steady from someone seeking a premium price for their rattle-can restoration.

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                            • #15
                              Steve , that is awesome what you have posted there , thanks .
                              Eddy , it's funny that you mention that . Awhile back this guy was selling two machines , a Atlas 618 18" and a 12" ( kind of rare ) I was thinking about the 12" and making it my dedicated milling attachment lathe and then selling the 18" , one thing he didn't have was a steady rest LOL . It was tempting but he lived in Barstow Ca. and everything looked like it had been sitting outside for along time . But I like your thinking .

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