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How to use a Wood Lathe
How to use a Wood Lathe
Wood turning can be a satisfying and addictive experience, it is in itself a complete unit capable of producing finished work. You can duplicate parts to repair chairs, dig into a burl to make a bowl or make your own custom candle sticks.
Wood lathes come in many sizes, from small pen lathes to huge bowl turning machines. They are designated according to the maximum diameter of material that can be swung over the bed. A lathe capable of turning an 11-inch diameter disk is referred to as an 11-inch lathe. The other dimension to be concerned with is the center to center measurement, this determines the maximum length of material that can be mounted between the headstock and tailstock.
Safe, effective use of a wood lathe requires detailed study and
Always wear safety goggles or safety glasses with side shields
Do not wear gloves, loose clothing, jewelry or any dangling objects that may catch in rotating parts or accessories. Tie back long hair.
Check the owner/operators manual for proper speed
The work area must be provided with shadow free lighting, and be open and uncluttered, so that the operator moves are not hindered.
Make certain that the belt guard or cover is in place and be sure that the work piece is free but firmly mounted between centers. Check that all clamping devices (locks), such as on the tailstock and tool rest, are tight and that the work piece clears the tool rest and other machine parts before operating the tool.
Never adjust the tool rest with the lathe turned "on."
Do not run a lathe in the wrong direction. This can cause the turning tool to be thrown from your hands.
The lathe spindle must rotate so the top of the work piece turns toward you.
The clearance between the work piece and the tool rest should be only about 1/8 in.
Use only defect-free stock, without cracks, checks, knots, splits and the like. Knots, for example, can fly out and cause serious injury.
A lathe should not be altered in any way, or set up to perform any operation not covered in the owner/operators manual.
It is recommended that you rough out faceplate work piece on a band saw or with hand tools before installing them on the
Hold turning chisels securely on the tool rest, and hold handle of chisel firmly. Always use the lowest speed when starting a new work piece.
Also be sure to remove the tool rest before you sand a work piece by hand.
Never remount a turned piece once it is removed from the faceplate.
Turn off and, if possible, unplug the lathe after use. Lock switch, if lock is available, and store the key.