[4]

Possible happy outcome with an economical lathe chuck

[3]
[10] Like what you see?
Click here to donate to this forum and upgrade your account!

jmarkwolf

Active User
Registered
Joined
Nov 9, 2012
Messages
358
I finally settled on a new 8in lathe chuck for my 10in rotary table. I couldn't justify a spendy chuck for occasional use in my home shop, and after scouring the on-line universe for a good candidate, I realized that there is no way to anticpate the level of quality on import chucks under $500 or so, sight unseen.

The chuck I settled on is from a company called CME tools for $140. After comparing the description and on-line pricing on many chucks, the clincher for me was that CME laser etches their name on the chuck. No no-name chucks for me! :)

I was about to place an on-line order from the CME EBAY store for $180 delivered, but I noticed that CME is actually located in a suburb of Detroit, about 45mins from my home. I called them to see if I could simply drive over and pick it up. They assured me I could, saving shipping charges!

After un-boxing, the first thing I did was to plug the chuck key in and test the jaw movement. I didn't feel any apparent grit as the jaws opened and closed, although I could feel the distinct pinion gear mesh on the scroll. The jaws closed nicely with no apparent asymetric gaps between jaw edges.

After learning from the pages of the Hobby Machinist forums how to examine, dismantle and clean a lathe chuck I unboxed it and set about the task.

The chuck was covered in a light film of oil, which is easier to clean off than cosmoline that I was expecting to find. I was pleasantly surprised to find none of the sharp edges and burrs that many other reviews reported on other economical chucks. Curved edges were nicely rounded, and straight edges were all nicely chamfered.

As I dismantled the chuck I did encounter some wet sandy muck on the internal parts, as I have seen in on-line videos. After rinsing and cleaning the parts and re-assembly, I'm feeling quite optimistic I may have a reasonably usable lathe chuck for not too much outlay.

Will report here when I get it all back together and bolted up to my rotary table, for which I'll likely need to fabricate some t-nuts.

Pics below:

288092

288093

288094

288095288096
 
Last edited:

mikey

Active User
H-M Platinum Supporter ($50)
Joined
Dec 20, 2012
Messages
5,454
Good for you! Even high end chuck makers sometimes leave debris and burrs in new chucks so I've learned to trust only myself with new or used chucks. Take them down, wash and lube and assemble it right. Then you can trust it.

Looks like you got a nice chuck for not much money. Congrats.
 

stupoty

Active User
Registered
Joined
Dec 2, 2012
Messages
1,189
It's always nice when you get a reasonable price piece of kit and it works well.

The main body looks to be nice solid walls they don't appear to have skimped on the amount of material in it :)

Stu
 

darkzero

Global Moderator
Staff member
H-M Supporter - Gold Member ($25)
Joined
Nov 27, 2012
Messages
3,701
I have a brother to that one.
As do I. Mine is an older one though, not made by Sanou, well not marked anyways.

288190288191
 

FOMOGO

Active User
H-M Supporter - Gold Member ($25)
Joined
Sep 2, 2013
Messages
1,978
Let us know what the run out is when you find out. Always nice to get more than you were expecting. Mike
 

Latinrascalrg1

Brass
Registered
Joined
Dec 9, 2016
Messages
518
Thanks for sharing and very interested in your after use review as well if you wouldn't mind.
 

jmarkwolf

Active User
Registered
Joined
Nov 9, 2012
Messages
358
Let us know what the run out is when you find out. Always nice to get more than you were expecting. Mike
My intended use for this chuck is as a dedicated accessory for the rotary table.

I will be utilizing a 3MT/straight shank "plug" to align the center line of the chuck with the center line of the table. The taper portion will be snugged in the center hole of the table, and then by closing the jaws on the straight shank portion of the "plug", the chuck and the table alignment will be quite good (I think).

Consequently, , I won't have the opportunity to measure run out in the practical sense, such as on a lathe.
 

ebolton

Active Member
Registered
Joined
Feb 8, 2017
Messages
41
I got a CME 4-jaw independent to use on my lathe a few months ago. I found the quality very good.

-Ed
 

Tom1948

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter - Gold Member ($25)
Joined
Dec 6, 2018
Messages
49
I bought a Sanou 5 inch 3 jaw chuck a couple of months ago. I was very pleased with it. Smooth , no grit. Going to use it on my rotary table. I have a Sanou 3 jaw and 4 jaw that came with my PM lathe. Because of the way the PM mounting system is ( and i do like it) I have found out that carefull mounting of the chuck and torquing the bolts has a direct affect on chuck runout. I asked PM what thier mounting system was called and they did not give me a good answer. Anyhow, as far as hobby work goes for the price Sanou works for me. My chuck was $70.00 to the door. I was skeptical at first.
 

GrayTech

Active Member
Registered
Joined
Jan 18, 2018
Messages
110
Recently got a 5" 4 jaw Sanou for my new (old) lathe as it only had a 3 jaw and am very satisfied with it. Well made and nicely finished for the price. In the process of making a back plate for it out of a ⅝" thick cast iron flywheel from a treadmill motor and a chunk of 4140 for the threaded center hub.
 
[5] [7]
Top