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[Lathe] I bought an atlas lathe in pieces.

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Mellodabs

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I bought an atlas lathe in pieces with all the parts. It included the original manual, a letter to the company for replacement parts, and a motor that doesn't work. All for $150. I'm new to wood working and need help puting it together, finding what model it is ( i believe its a 10d from my research) I have TONS of questions.
 

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markba633csi

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That is an oldie (I see the knife switch)
You'll need to find a used motor of about 1/3 to 1/2 horsepower for it
mark
 

just old al

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Not sure what it would have been used for - lathe has a proper switch on the front. Not seeing the bits of the countershaft mounting - just the shaft and pulleys (good to have). Pillow blocks on a swinging platform would do for the countershaft - BTDT before, or find a countershaft assembly from an old SOuth Bend and adapt it.
 

Mellodabs

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I know machinist that does workfor nasa amongst other companies so i could have parts made. But i know absolutly nothing about lathes other than i want one and want to turn wood, epoxy, and metal, as well as combinations of the three. I have no clue about gears and assembly of them. Also can i rebuild the motor? I do have some mechanical background but that lies in aumotive.
 

Al 1

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Mello, See if you can find a parts manual. The price was not bad. And look at the bright side, no need to take apart before cleaning / painting. Al
 

Mellodabs

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Im not at all disappointed in it no being assembled. Let me gain intimate knowledge of the machine. I am at this very moment pulling the motor apart to see if the bushings are dirty. (Recomended by my uncle)
 

Mellodabs

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Hopefully it was just the amount of wood dust and rust that was bogging it down. We'll see.
 

markba633csi

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Check the start switch mechanism, clean contacts and so forth, make sure it moves properly
If there is a start capacitor it may be bad, but test the motor first, it might work after all- maybe just bad connections
mark
 

Mellodabs

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I applied power to it an it startd smoking bu was trying to turn. When i broke it down to clean it had years of wood dust in it. I didnt see any burned or shorted wires. Im guessing it was the wood dust. Also the contacts still have the horizonal lines from machining. Some rust but other that than nothing burned or worn smooth. I still have to put it back together. Had to leave for work at an odd time .
 

middle.road

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That fits the old term 'basket case' perfectly.
I'll bet that Robert (@wa5cab) will chime in on this Atlas soon enough.
 

Bob Korves

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It is a lot easier to take machines apart than to put them back together in working condition. There are lots of tear down experts around, who buy stuff, take it apart, and then sell it (or most of it) or give it away, after quite a few years go by. :eek 2: Hopefully, everything you need will be there.

You said you are new to wood working. That is a metal lathe, and this is a machinist forum. You are of course welcome here, and we will try to help you as best as we can. Understand though, that your lathe was built for cutting metal, not wood. It can certainly be used for cutting wood, and I have done so myself when necessary, but it is not so good for longer term, steady wood working. As you have found out, the motor is not sealed against wood dust and fragments getting into it, and other parts of the lathe can also be damaged by sawdust and wood chips. Wood is abrasive, and it also takes the oil away from the lathe surfaces, inviting rust and wear. No doubt lots of metal lathes are used for machining wood, but extra care and maintenance will be required if you don't want the lathe to self destruct.
 

Mellodabs

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Well that kind of sucks as i was planning in turning wood and epoxy mixes with it. If the woods going to dry it out then epoxy would just destroy it... if im not mistaken.
 

Bob Korves

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You can use the lathe for wood, but it will require stringent care taking of it. Cover everything you can before turning wood, and clean up everything you can and then oil it after finishing your work for the day. Beyond that, dust and oil crud will build up in all the cracks and crannies, so it will require a more comprehensive cleanup at regular intervals, how often depends somewhat on how often you use it, and how big of a mess you make.
 

Mellodabs

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I plan on using it quit often. In that case is it better to part out the machine and make the 150 i spent on it and buy a newer lathe? The most metal working i would be doing is say metal shavings in some epoxy. Wood would be my main work on the lathe. Also i live in paso robles so i have access to an abundance of wood and almond wood. (i have a friend with an old almond orchard)
 

Mellodabs

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Again i really do appriciate all the help you guys are giving me. Its quit awesome. Thought i was going to start my endevor completely blind which i was ok with lol
 

Bob Korves

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If you do mostly wood working, a wood lathe would probably make more sense to have in your shop. Or, both...
 

middle.road

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I plan on using it quit often. In that case is it better to part out the machine and make the 150 i spent on it and buy a newer lathe? The most metal working i would be doing is say metal shavings in some epoxy. Wood would be my main work on the lathe. Also i live in paso robles so i have access to an abundance of wood and almond wood. (i have a friend with an old almond orchard)
Trade you some CA Almond for some East TN - xxxxxxxx? :grin:

You can use the Atlas for wood turning no problem. But as Bob mentions you just have to keep it clean.
I've used my Logan 10" quite a bit over the last 20+ years for wood. I feel that I have more control over what I'm doing on the Logan than I ever had on a wood lathe. I use fixed tooling as well as freehand.
I do how ever have a hefty jerry rigged dust collection setup on it.
I grabbed several pieces of air intake pieces at the local pull-a-part and I use those when I'm doing wood. Walnut needs to be sucked up no matter what equipment you use.
A couple of the air intakes were rectangular and I have one down under the ways, one up where the chips come off and then one near the motor.
Plus I drape the ways with towels while working.
Then after you're done, just wipe 'er down and give 'er a coat of oil.
As I've probably mentioned all too many times, I been in a lot of pattern shops that had metal working as well as woodworking equipment in them.
It all comes down to how clean the machines are kept.
 

Mellodabs

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Ill definatly look into shipping. What types do you have available? I have project pending my little wood shop coming together lol
 

Mellodabs

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Ok so it looks like i got in over mt head lol. Any ideas as to how much the parts ar worths and what a good beggining lathe would be?
 

Nogoingback

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Around here, there are almost always used wood lathes on CL for reasonable prices. (Cheaper than metal lathes anyway.).
I would look for an older machine in good shape rather than something new. Even if you need to change a bearing or something,
you'll wind up with a better machine. I've never owned one, but they look pretty simple.
 
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