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First post, HF Mini-lathe question or two

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LuckyKnives

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howdy from york county, va. i'm a knifemaker, and to supplement my LMS mill, just bought a hf 7x10. as i've only used it for 2 small projects now, i just have a couple of questions for anyone here who's interested. first, when operating the machine in one axis, is there ever a problem with the carriage/compound "creeping" against the force of the cutter against the work? if so, how can this be avoided? is there a lock i am unaware of? second, i've seen the carriage "rock" a little in what i guess would be the "y" axis, when cutting a little hard into a work piece. is there a way to stop this? thanks for any input from folks with experience :) mike
 

PHPaul

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Most entry-level mini lathes need some tuning up before working well. Check You Tube for several videos on what to check, adjust, clean and correct. Carriage movement is likely improperly adjusted gibs. It's fairly common to need to "stone" the gibs to get them flat and moving smoothly so they can be adjusted snugly enough to prevent (or at least limit) movement of the cross slide under load.

I'm a rank beginner, others with more experience will likely be along.
 

T Bredehoft

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Many lathes, (I dont' know specifically about yours,) have a screw of some sort on the right side of the saddle, extending down to a clamp under the ways. If yours doesn't you could make one, drill a hole in the to of the saddle, to clear the ways and put a threaded plate underneath to clamp the saddle in place. Use a screw to secure the plate. We all modify our tools to be the way we want them.
 

emtor

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howdy from york county, va. i'm a knifemaker, and to supplement my LMS mill, just bought a hf 7x10. as i've only used it for 2 small projects now, i just have a couple of questions for anyone here who's interested. first, when operating the machine in one axis, is there ever a problem with the carriage/compound "creeping" against the force of the cutter against the work? if so, how can this be avoided? is there a lock i am unaware of? second, i've seen the carriage "rock" a little in what i guess would be the "y" axis, when cutting a little hard into a work piece. is there a way to stop this? thanks for any input from folks with experience :) mike
I'm a knifemaker too and I've bought a lathe just a few days ago.
I won't be using it before the lathe is disassembled, cleaned, lubricated and adjusted. Since I'm a newbie in the art of machining this may take some time.
I doubt the workers at the chinese manufacturer has bothered to adjust every little detail and I want my lathe to perform it's very best.
For knifemaking I'll be using it to produce slices of antler that I know will be straight and that one side is true to the other.
I'll of course also use the lathe to make gear and equipment to aid me in knifemaking and add to that my interest in machining in general.
 

royesses

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Welcome to the forum, LuckyKnives.
In the attached LMS Mini Lathe Users Guide look for the section on adjustments. Adjust the gibs on the carriage, cross slide and compound. You want no rocking or play with free movement. A little tight with no movement works best. Also Little machine shop sells a carriage lock that you can purchase or you can make one. 1536082606468.png This mounts on the front of the carriage in the 2 threaded holes.

Roy
 

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homebrewed

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You can buy or make a carriage lock for your 7x10. What a lot of folks do (myself included) is just engage the half-nuts to sort-of lock the carriage in place. Of course, the lead screw is not engaged when you do this! FYI, there can be a fair amount of slop between the lead screw and mounting blocks so the lead screw _can_ move back and forth a bit (so the carriage can, too). To address this you could either enlarge the bolt holes on the right-hand mounting block to move it over some, or put a washer of the right thickness between the lead screw and block. For a more elaborate mod, add a thrust bearing. The latter might require some milling work.

The rocking you are observing may be due to improperly adjusted slide plates. But be careful when adjusting them -- I've heard stories about folks breaking or cracking them. There also are mods out there to improve the slide plate situation. They basically throw away the OEM adjusting scheme and use shims to get a good sliding fit. I took that approach and am happy with the result.
 

LuckyKnives

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thanks for the replies, all - i'll be back after i try them and figure something out. mike
 

LuckyKnives

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thanks for the replies, all - i'll be back after i try them and figure something out. mike
quick update - i made two carriage 'stops' as shown on Frank Hoose's mini-lathe site, and a carriage lock i saw on a youtube video - it's a quick and dirty, no drilling item, that clamps over the carriage and bolts to a saddle under the bed ways. looks like hell, but will do for now until i make a better one. again, thanks for all the replies. mike
 

LuckyKnives

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#9
wow, deja vu all over again, huh? do you post knife pics anywhere online i can see? would sure like to see them. many of mine are posted at Lucky Knives on facebook.
 
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