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 Post subject: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 5:51 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 8:43 pm
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Location: Montreal, Quebec.
Where can I buy a lathe for peanuts?? I am looking for something that I can use to make Crosman valves, pump pistons, PCP valves, valve stems and ect.

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 7:24 pm 
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Location: Vancouver Island BC
What are you calling peanuts


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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 8:00 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 07, 2006 5:42 pm
Posts: 648
Location: Ontario
Kinetic_Genius wrote:
Where can I buy a lathe for peanuts?? I am looking for something that I can use to make Crosman valves, pump pistons, PCP valves, valve stems and ect.


Try Busy Bee. They have a website.

But a King lathe is the best bang for the buck.

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 8:49 pm 
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Location: Woodstock
Nothing decent will cost peanuts... Anything with accuracy and quality will cost a fair amount. Plus 2 to 3 times what you paid for the lathe in tooling...

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 9:21 pm 
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Location: Out There
Your best bet is probably to be waiting for someone to sell something decent around here, or perhaps visit some sort of used machine shop supplier and see if they have something vaguely close to your pricerange.

Just to give you an idea, I bought a Craftex unit from busy Bee (10x18): http://busybeetools.ca/cgi-bin/picture10?NTITEM=B2227L and I think I paid a bit less than it's current sale price, and with the tooling- just like DerekVinyard pointed out- I'm into it for close to $2 grand- and that's with no milling attachment.

Problem? I've got no one local who can teach me anything, so what I can do has been purely based on trial/error and what I can read. You can read that "I have a serious knowledge deficit" when it comes to using it.

What you might want to consider, as you are in a fairly large Metropolitan area- is finding a course you can take to get the skills to use a lathe, and do some of your airgun projects during the course on their equipment. Then, if you think it's worthwhile, go out and buy an adequate lathe.

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 12:06 pm 
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Posts: 233
Location: Edmonton
Definitely agree on the tooling cost.

Based on my experience, I'd say what you want to do is:

1) write down a list of projects you're interested in and their sizes. Choose a lathe based on these sizes. DON'T FORGET the spindle bore. you can work on things that are longer than the lathe if you can fit them through the spindle. Also don't forget the length is measured between centers. The chuck takes up a portion of that space.

2) Choose the best lathe you can in your size. The accuracy of your lathe is where every other bit of accuracy devolves from.

3) Tool up! This is where you really start spending money. I've found myself buying 3 sets of almost everything. 1 set for roughing, 1 set for soft materials (aluminum and brass), 1 set of good carbides for steel. A good parting tool is worth spending a little extra for. You'll also want a few dial indicators that you can mount at various places to tell you how far you've gone.

4) Metal. You're going to spend a lot on this too, but that's kind of the point. ;-)

You can spend the tooling money incrementally though, so it's worth it to spend for a good lathe and work your way up from there.

If all you're looking to do is valve work, and you don't care about powerfeed (needed for threading) you can get into a Taig http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx ... 50260&ap=1 for around $500 for a basic setup.

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Sat Mar 13, 2010 1:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2009 4:49 pm
Posts: 722
The only problem I have with my mini lathe is the rigidity blows...the unit is just not accurately built to have 0play..
The spindle runout is .001" total which is fine enough, but the carriage assembly is my biggest gripe..I've learned to deal with it but I don't want to.

A decent mini-lathe and tooling is going to set you back 800-1000...and remember you don't want to make the accuracy any worse. So I'm telling you, do not get cheap chucks or work holding stuff..a decent drill chuck runs $50-120 and is well worth it.
You can get mini-lathe sized quick-change toolposts but even the smallest are still going to loose you some travel on the cross-slide(feed controlling the distance of the cutter from the center-line)

A piece that i have on order and is going to save me alot of trouble is an adjustable arbor.
It is basically a vise for the ID of a piece, you slide the piece on and it expands, This is awesome for turning both ends square and for turning parallel ID's and OD's. Plus you dont get jaw marks in the OD of the finished piece.

Once I've got my own house and garage, I'll be tooling it for around $100,000 (lathe,mill,saws,precision-grinder and tooling)


Anyways... http://www.mini-lathe.com/mini_lathe/ac ... sories.htm one of the best sites on the net for minilathes.

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 11:01 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2008 1:03 pm
Posts: 102
Location: vancouver island
mini lathe user's guide from LittleMachineShop.com is a good entry level manual for mini-lathes. goes a little further than the usual instruction manual.


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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Sat Mar 20, 2010 9:13 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2006 11:53 pm
Posts: 6429
Location: Surrey B.C.
This is about as cheap as your going to find for a nice deal. My Hercules Ajax mazak 18 is just too big for the little stuff. So been looking for something along these lines for a while now. Just didn't want to spring a lot of coin for the little it will be used. My big one does most of the work but this sure will come in handy for some of the smaller stuff. And yes I know the drawbacks and limitations of a 3in1. But at this price and the condition it is in, I just couldn't turn it down. :wink:

http://vancouver.kijiji.ca/c-buy-and-se ... Z188559016

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 Post subject: Re: A cheap lathe
PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 12:40 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 10:35 pm
Posts: 159
Browsing through the older posts I came upon this one . --- Like AirgunEric I purchased the Craftex B2227L last year . IMHO it's the most bang for your Buck . Depending on the primary deployment (whatever your need is) it is very satisfactory for the advanced handiman . 10x18 is sufficient for most of the requirements of a non-professional . It's sturdy (stiff cast-iron-bed) , accurate and easy to use . All the gears are solid steel and are easily changed . Cheaper-ones , as well as some dearer models , employ plastic-gears and are prone to break down . --- Instead of buying a used domestic product which you may have to refurbish (at high expense) this NEW chinese machine can be utilized immediately and is cost-effective . The sale-price was $999 (reg. $1399) . The current sale-price is $1150 . --- Sofar I've invested another $500 in accessories . --- Before I opted for this model I researched every lathe- and machine-shop forum I could find and am glad I did . --- According to the advertisement it's a 3/4 HP motor but on the plate (on the lathe-housing) it states 1 HP . --- Whatever the case may be it's powerful enough for the non-professional user . I'd definitely buy it again . --- No doubt , more accessories will be needed in the future . --- Go to BUSY BEE TOOLS . You'll find a whole bunch of different models available . --- Research and choose wisely ; a more expensive model isn't necessarily better . --- CHEERS :drinkers:


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