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Initial Lathe Operation

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Initial Lathe Operation

Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:25 pm

I finally set up my lathe, and I can't quite get it to start up. The instructions are vague, and do not have a trouble shooting section. I am fairly certain that I have just missed a step. My lathe is the Cummins Industrial Mini-Lathe, basically the standard mini-lathe. To start it, I move the switch to the "forward" position, open the emergency shutoff switch cover, and then slowly adjust the speed on the speed dial, going from 0 rpm and increasing it to where it should be around 500 rpm or so. I am in the low speed mode. If any of you advanced lathe users could provide some insight, it would be appreciated. I can provide any information and pictures that are necessary. Thanks.

EDIT 1: OK, fixed the first problem (just doing it in the wrong order I suppose...doh). But now a second, nastier one arose. The chuck spun for a rotation or two, but then stopped, even though the motor was running. I opened it up, only to see that none of the gears were turning, but I could see a belt driven gear running inside of the lathe casing (away from my access unless I took off a lot of bolts and screws). This has me nervous, because I don't want their to be a broken belt or stripped gear. Anyone experience THIS problem before?
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Last edited by Velocity on Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postAuthor: clide » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:29 pm

Is it doing anything at all, making any sound? Have you checked the fuse? Oh and I hate to ask, but is it plugged in?
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Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:43 pm

clide wrote:Is it doing anything at all, making any sound? Have you checked the fuse? Oh and I hate to ask, but is it plugged in?


I fixed this problem (its emergency switch open first, then turn the switch to forward, then increase the speed), but check the original post for a new problem.
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Unread postAuthor: CasinoVanart » Fri Oct 10, 2008 10:50 pm

Sounds to me as though it has just jumped out of gear, happens to my lathe sometimes, i fix it simply by pushing the lever back into mesh after stopping the motor. Check that the "idler" gear is in mesh (meshes directly to the main motor shaft).

Have you a link for said lathe, or pic of the insides of it?
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Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:01 pm

Here are a couple of pictures...I don't know how useful they will be

<a href="http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l112/rmich732/Lathe.jpg">Full View of Lathe</a>

<a href="http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l112/rmich732/Gears.jpg">Gears</a>

<a href="http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l112/rmich732/Problem.jpg">Belt Driven gear that runs when the others do not</a>
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:10 pm

Velocity, my friend Michael has that same model lathe. I might be able to find his AIM handle...

By the way, nice one! How long ago did your order this?
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Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:12 pm

markfh11q wrote:Velocity, my friend Michael has that same model lathe. I might be able to find his AIM handle...

By the way, nice one! How long ago did your order this?


Christmas...and I just opened it up tonight :( ...the problem was, when we bought it, our basement was getting redone. Once it was finally redone, I needed to build the workbenches and such. Plus I had to deal with school and other work, that everything got delayed until now. I can't wait to use it though.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:16 pm

Well, I can't find his IM, sorry. I have his cell-phone number but I'm not sure he'd appreciate me giving that out. :wink:

Well, I hope you get it figured out. I'll probably never get anything above a drill-press in terms of complexity.
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Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:18 pm

markfh11q wrote:Well, I can't find his IM, sorry. I have his cell-phone number but I'm not sure he'd appreciate me giving that out. :wink:

Well, I hope you get it figured out. I'll probably never get anything above a drill-press in terms of complexity.

Its all good...worse comes to worse I'll call the company tommorow.

I don't even have a drill press...really, just basic tools, then this guy 8)
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:20 pm

I'll have to remember that you have a large machine tool, now.


That way I don't beat myself up too much when I see how much nicer your cannons are than mine...
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Unread postAuthor: jrrdw » Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:11 am

The picture is hard to see exactly whats hooked up to what. Looks kinda like there is a missing gear that is saposed to ingage the spindle gear with the belt driven gear. But like I said, it's hard to tell in that last picture. Try reingaging the spped adjust lever, spin the chuck by hand while engaging the speed control lever. Maby the gears just arnt engaging and it's kicking back out when you turning it on????
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Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Sat Oct 11, 2008 11:55 am

OK, can someone tell me what connects the motor to the chuck? On my lathe, I see the motor is connected directly to a gear, which is connected (by a belt) to another gear. But I do not see anything that connects that gear to either the leadscrew or the chuck (which are connected by gears). Maybe I am missing a part; maybe something is misaligned; maybe I moved some switches or levers that disengages the chuck; I don't really know. Here are some more pictures; see if you can decipher the problem from everything that is going on:

<a href="http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l112/rmich732/BeltEngaged.jpg">Belted gear system; they appear to work properly when the lathe is powered on</a>

<a href="http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l112/rmich732/RemovedGearsFront.jpg">Gear set I removed from the lathe; I would think that a small gear of some sort should connect the belted system to this gear system, but I do not know for sure</a>

<a href="http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l112/rmich732/MissingGear.jpg">Belt system and other gear system side by side, aligned properly at an angle</a>

EDIT: I think all of the exterior gears are part of moving the leadscrew, not the spindle. Perhaps the spindle is moved internally? If so, I probably will need to call them.
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Unread postAuthor: jrrdw » Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:31 pm

Try putting the part you have in your hand in the 2nd pic back on the lathe. The big hole slips over the spindle gear and the bracket bolts to the threaded holes at a angle. That lever sticks out the back and should be the high low change lever...... :D If not I'm changing my name to Mud.... :shock:
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Unread postAuthor: Velocity » Sat Oct 11, 2008 4:43 pm

Good news; I solved the problem.

After opening up the headstock (took a while), I saw that the high/low changer was not gearing up properly. To make it gear up, I have to spin the chuck a little to get the gears to align. Otherwise, it doesn't work...the handle doesn't go far enough. So a pretty basic problem; I can now use the lathe flawlessly. However, does anyone know if there IS a fix to this problem? No big deal if there is not...I am just curious.
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Unread postAuthor: jrrdw » Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:01 pm

So my 1st post was correct. As for my second I'm now guessing the lever is for the change gears, (changes the speed of the lead screw). My lathe has a manual gear box so no levers on mine.
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