Skip navigation

The bread & butter of Micromechanics.

by Tony

Tags: , , , ,

So I’ve finally been introduced to the lathe.  It was a long month of solid filing and sawing which gets tedious to be honest.  We just finished our second week with the lathe and I must say, I really like this thing!  It’s quite simple to use actually but setting the geometry of the cutter and grinding the cutter makes it a little more interesting.

First, the cutter.  We each received a shank of HSS (High Speed Steel).  We were taught how to grind it down to make it functionable on the lathe.  After seeing the demo, I thought it would be easy but it’s quite difficult actually. Well, I wouldn’t say difficult but since I’m a perfectionist, I tried to get all the tapers out and make it look all pretty.  As long as you have a sharp pointed tip, nice straight edges, and clearance angles, you’re good to go.

The lathe is a little more complicated because there are quite a few parts you need to know.  I was overwhelmed at first but you’re slowly introduced to each part and it’s all good from there.  I haven’t learned every part and all the little goodies that are attachable yet but we have a box full of stuff.  From collets, to shelac chucks, t-rests, and many more.  I’ve used most of the tools in there and I feel like we’re being spoiled. :p  Our teacher said our Horia lathes with all the collets, etc are worth over $14k.

I finished my anvils and pushers yesterday and that was quite a feat.  It was our first project on the lathe and I found that turning was quite easy as long as you set up everything properly and measure constantly.  It feels great to make something that is fully functional and looks nice.

I’ll go more in depth with parts of the lathe as I progress but right now we’re working on all our projects.  The anvils/pushers are now out of the way and I’m finishing up my balance tack.  Next is our movement holder and they’re all due by the end of next week!

Be Sociable, Share!

One Comment

  1. Posted October 18, 2008 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Hi –

    The lathe is one of the original machine tools: developed towards the end of the 19th century, it made all other machine tools possible. In terms of industrial development, you can make anything with a lathe; without a lathe, it’s almost impossible to make anything.

    Great tool, and great blog. Regular reader…

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *