Lathe bench/cabinet design ideas

bobby g

Bob
Corporate Member
I bought a Rikon 70-220VSR today from a member. Now I need to build something to put it on. I'm thinking of a heavy duty cabinet with a solid wood top and storage below. This is the beginning of my woodturning chapter and I welcome your inputs.
Thanks.
Bob
 

Bill Clemmons

Bill
Corporate Member
Has storage underneath, plus a false bottom w/ 100# of sand to absorb vibration. Main reason I built it was to raise the lathe to a suitable working height for me.

IMG_3610.JPG
 

creasman

Board of Directors, Development Director
Jim
Staff member
Corporate Member
I'd have to agree with @Charlie that @Bill Clemmons lathe is far too clean for him to be taken seriously ;) . I do, however, second his suggestion of adding sand for extra weight. I have a cavity in the base of my lathe cabinet that I filled with sand.
 

Bill Clemmons

Bill
Corporate Member
Bob,
Don't listen to Bill. As you can see from the photo, he never uses his lathe. :):):):):):)
I have tried to get him to attend one of my segmented turning classes so I can get him deep into the turning vortex, but he refuses.

I turned it on once. I wasn't sure what all that noise was so I shut it off real quick. Now I keep it at the far end of the shop so I don't have to go near it. I'm afraid the floor will open up and the vortex will suck me in. :p
 

NOTW

Notw
Senior User
Here is mine, wow that was 5 years ago, lot has changed since then (new house, new bench, new shop, sheesh). But still have and am using this the exact same way. Drawer has my turning tools and chucks and bottom has my slow speed grinder, sharpening jig and a few turning blanks.

 

bob vaughan

Bob Vaughan
Senior User
Before making a cabinet, consider for a moment the nature of wood turning and the wood lathe.
The chips necessarily come off the lathe right at you and down on the tops of your shoes. If there is a storage cabinet beneath, the compartments eventually become filled with chips. Been there early on in my woodturning. I found that nothing below the lathe makes the necessary cleanup a whole lot easier. Maybe a couple of drawer columns on either side, but you're still going to have to deal with dust and chips.
A wide trash can below the lathe helps.

1   mess - 1.jpg

1   mess 1 - 1.jpg
 

RickR

Rick
Senior User
I’m with Bob here. This is what I put under my 70-220vsr. The center is a box section for rigidity.
 

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smallboat

smallboat
Corporate Member
Now that you mention it, my first turning experience was in Bill’s shop. But Fred was the one to show me the ropes. Bill was no where to be seen. Hmmm….

Seriously, this is a “design project” I’ve been kicking around for about 5 years. Even have several generations of sketches. Just haven’t landed on I design I like well enough to build. I’m getting close though. I do like the weighted base and generally open plan concepts. Want to incorporate tool / chuck storage on the stand, but without the chip catcher feature.

Interested to see where you land on this.
 

bob vaughan

Bob Vaughan
Senior User
I'll keep my chucks, centers, and other accessories away from the turning area to reduce turning debris getting on them. I'll have a serrated tray to hold the tools I'm using for the specific projects.

I've been turning a lot of dry wood lately so I decided to experiment on a deflecting baffle to keep the shavings away from my feet and directing it to back under the lathe. I cobbled together some cardboard and end mounting pieces of plywood and c-clamped the rig to the lathe. Its still a work in progress. What I made worked to a degree but I need to make the trough a little higher and a little further away from the lathe bed to catch a higher percentage of the chips. Of course, when I drop a piece of sandpaper, I have to go behind the lathe to retrieve it (grumble).

1   mess 2 - 1.jpg
 

bob vaughan

Bob Vaughan
Senior User
I’m with Bob here. This is what I put under my 70-220vsr. The center is a box section for rigidity.
I like that design. My son has a lathe on a stand that's too short for him. I may copy some of those design details for a new stand for him.
 

Pop Golden

Pop
Corporate Member
Woodturner Wonders has a dust collection system that I think is the best idea I've seen so far. I did buy his whole track system. It includes track, dust collector, light & bowl depth gage. I also bought his sanding system. This is well made stuff,and great design. woodturner's wonders.com

Pop
 

NOTW

Notw
Senior User
This the one you have Pop?
 

Henry W

HenryW
Senior User
Bob
Aside from stability, I consider the height the most important aspect of a turning bench - consider that carefully. Turning tends to be unlike many other WWing processes, in that you stand in the same spot for longer periods of time - so ergonomics becomes ever more important. If you and your lovely shop companion are both going to use this... you may need a unique design with variable height, have two benches, or seek a compromise that makes turning uncomfortable for both of you

My bench came as a package with my lathe - purchased from another turner. It is simply a heavy basic bench. THe plans were from Teknatool, the company that produces Nova, and were on their website IIRC; I don't see it anymore.
Looks very similar to this pic/link:
1626352578603.png

https://www.lumberjocks.com/assets/pictures/projects/355605.jpg
It's built primarily like one would build a real workbench - heavy timbers and stout joints. It has with an edged plywood top, and a lower shelf box that can be used for ballast (which I have not used). The area between the shelves in open, but filled with turning blanks I may never get to.
I see no reason to not make this area have a set of drawers to store the many turning related items you will accumulate. This will undoubtedly include Klingspor's 'by the pound' (buy the pounds!) GOLD sandpaper that is unmatched for turning usage and a few other items that you will find you 'need'. If no drawers then you will want to have another storage area nearby for related tools and supplies. I personally would not store turning tools (the chisels) there, as I find I do switch to another tool reasonably frequently, but chucks, spur drives, base plates, ....

Hope that helps
 

Pop Golden

Pop
Corporate Member
I have the Nova plans for that bench in my owner's manual for my Nova lathe. Go to Nova and look up an owner's manual and you should find it.

Pop
 

SabertoothBunny

SabertoothBunny
User
I have a Rikon 70220vsr and built a basic frame and stand out of pine 2x4s and 1/2" plywood. Works fine, moves around easily with the wheels. Vibration is never an issue with this, it needs to be raised a little bit to get the right height. Will try to remember to get pictures to post.
 

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