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    Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    So, now that I'm hooked on turning after acquiring an old 12" craftsman lathe last year I've decided to try my luck at building a large bowl lathe. My SIL is scrapping a large dual turret CNC metal lathe and gave me head of the line scraping privileges. So far I've pulled a piece (I'm calling a head stock) with a 1.25" swiss collet. The idea is to fabricate interchangeable 1.25" shafts with a bowl chuck, face plate and spur, etc...



    I also pulled a 2hp motor off the CNC which I hope to hook up to a VFD and use a potentiometer to control the speed. Plan to use some scrap heavy duty tubing for the frame/body of the bowl lathe. Will update with additional pics and info ASAP.
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    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    If the lathe won't have a tailstock, be mindful of the "line of fire" should any bowls take flight. A 16'' bowl blank is quite heavy and can do a lot of damage to cars, windows, humans, etc.

    If you get interested in turning big bowls, you are also going to want a big bandsaw. And a good electric chainsaw. And a coring system. etc etc

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Me thinks me has the bandsaw portion covered. https://www.ncwoodworker.net/forums/...light=centauro
    I'm too chicken to start without a tail stock. Will start looking for coring components. Finally got the thing running today. Getting ready to load some more progress pics.

    Quote Originally Posted by awldune View Post
    If the lathe won't have a tailstock, be mindful of the "line of fire" should any bowls take flight. A 16'' bowl blank is quite heavy and can do a lot of damage to cars, windows, humans, etc.

    If you get interested in turning big bowls, you are also going to want a big bandsaw. And a good electric chainsaw. And a coring system. etc etc
    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Got to do a little more this afternoon. Cut a few more pieces for the bed/frame.


    Also got the motor/plate drilled/tapped and bolted to the frame


    Had to remove the gears off the motor's original configuration (silver looking) and bore the head stock 5v pulley (rusty looking) to fit over it.


    Mounted the head stock and installed pulleys and belts


    Miscellaneous leftovers and a part I plan to use as a tail stock once the bed is complete


    Finally, I got the lathe under power late today, runs smooth. Will try and get video loaded as soon as my SIL forwards it to me. Now I'm waiting on the VFD and potentiometer

    Thanks,
    Steve
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    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Looking good sir!
    Happiness is a direction not a destination. ~Athena Orchard

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Wow Steve, that is some project and fabrication! Good luck on your engineering marvel. I'll be looking forward to the final result and your first bowl from it.
    Experience is a hard teacher; she gives the test first, and the lesson later.

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Maybe it's just tapatslk but most of the pictures are sideways. But wow, that is going to be some kind of lathe.

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    I assumed most viewers would be lying down while browsing!!! Truth is it's operator error.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rick M View Post
    Maybe it's just tapatslk but most of the pictures are sideways. But wow, that is going to be some kind of lathe.
    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Hope the link works. Unedited video of the lathe under power for the first time.
    https://youtu.be/GBv9E9laC0c

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Well, that is a lot of progress in a very short time!!

    So there will be a short bed for a tailstock? Sounds good. What swing do you plan for?

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    I will definitely incorporate a tail stock sitting on a 24" bed. The banjo will be in the 18" neighborhood. I still haven't decided on the final swing. Still reading, analyzing and taking suggestions. Had to make a trip to Wilmington yesterday so no progress. Hopefully I'll make it to the shop later today.

    Quote Originally Posted by awldune View Post
    Well, that is a lot of progress in a very short time!!

    So there will be a short bed for a tailstock? Sounds good. What swing do you plan for?

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    That's pretty ingenious...and impressive!
    The top-heaviness would concern me, especially with an added 50# chunk of wood. Will it have some sort of sand-filled counterbalance and damper?

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    It will be anchored (bolts) to the floor

    Quote Originally Posted by gritz View Post
    That's pretty ingenious...and impressive!
    The top-heaviness would concern me, especially with an added 50# chunk of wood. Will it have some sort of sand-filled counterbalance and damper?
    ďA society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in".

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    My lathe (Nova 1624) has a 16'' swing, it is not that often that I wish it was bigger. One nice thing about a big swing would be not having to worry about clearance for your banjo.

    Since you are making this thing from scratch, I would think seriously about a longer bed. A 24'' bed does not give you much space between the faceplate/chuck and tailstock if you wanted to make any sort of deep bowl or vase, or do operations such as drilling with the tailstock. If you meant 24'' between centers, that is a great size for bowl turning. Also unless your tailstock design is super easy to remove from the lathe, a longer bed is nice for getting it out of the way.

    Another suggestion -- don't put the only shutoff for the lathe on the headstock, where you would have to reach across the workpiece. If your bowl is coming loose in the chuck, it is much nicer to shut off the lathe from the tailstock end.

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    Re: Bowl Lathe Project/Build

    Quote Originally Posted by LocoWoodWork View Post
    It will be anchored (bolts) to the floor
    You could also consider filling the tubing with sand, shot, or concrete.

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