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Workshop equipment

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Workshop equipment

Unread postAuthor: john bunsenburner » Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:51 am

Well after having FINALLY cleaned up my work shop, I would like to get a bit of equipment to work with. A shop compressor will be built(if it works with high flow and very high pressure output...) and most basic hand tools(besides a good assortment of taps and dies) along with a dremel and a hand drill are all existent. But i would like to move into a more high precision and mechanical level of spudding, and building. And so i have been considering the purchase of either a drill press or a lathe, or maybe even both. I have a maximum budjet of about 430$ but would be very happy to stay under that. Now I have several questions:
a. should i get a lathe or a drill press if only one?
b. Should I look around locally or is there a good supplier that ships to europe and is located, preferably in europe(to keep shipping prices down)
c. Is there any other important tools that I should get before considering to buy either one of the two mentioned?

thanks in advance for your valuable tips and comments, and happy spudding!
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Unread postAuthor: SpudFarm » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:02 am

Hello!

drillpress is nothing compared to a lathe, but i have tried a professional lathe now and i realized how bad those cheap lathes are, a lathe sould cost quite abit to be usefull where precission is needed.

what you should consider is a welder or a pipe bender, usefull for more advanced designs.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:02 am

I think a really good buy would be a belt sander.

I use mine liberally when building spudguns. It's good for cutting pieces to an accurate length (cut with a miter saw and then sand to correct length as measured with calipers) and with a square face.

Another thing to invest in is a miter box (a good one, with adjustable metal rails, not the cheap plastic kind), for making cuts.

If you wanted to move into metal launchers, you could use your new miter saw to cut your tubing at the right angle, and then butt weld to secure. For instance, for a 90* elbow, two 45* end cuts on your tubing welded together. Oh, you should also get a welder. :) I own a cheap MIG welder, but it'll work good enough for whatever purposes I might come up with.

It's pretty much all suggestion, but I would get these:

~Good vice and work table
~Bench grinder
~Drill press
~Belt sander
~Miter box, with assorted saws
~Large shop compressor
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Unread postAuthor: john bunsenburner » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:14 am

Ok, well i maybe forgot to add that I ONLY work with metal, no pvc, no acrylic nothing (besides for pistons). I have a work talbe and vices of coarse, as i said basic equiptment is there. Belt sander I am considering, but that can wait, i have improvised an angle grinder with my drill and use the dremel for other small grinding/sanding uses. I have a miter box and a very good saw to go with it, but do little woad working so it is not really very frequently used by me. Compressor will be made, i do not want to reveal deatails yet but it will fulfill my needs.

Now I have heard about micro lathes and seen a few that are very cheep and seem to be fairly accurate. what sort of price range am I facing if I want a good quality small lathe that will let me drill strait holes into alumium and otherwise work with metal?
Same as above for the drill press, good quality medium size.
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Budget problems

Unread postAuthor: Technician1002 » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:17 am

I can't possibly think of a lathe that is worth it's salt in the budget mentioned.

A good drill press with a good drill vise can be used for machining some simple parts and can be purchased within budget. I cut my pistons on a drill press.

Think on spending a couple hundred on a really good drill press and another hundred on a reasonable drill press vise to hold machining tools. An X-Y vise is worth the investment.

Now I have heard about micro lathes and seen a few that are very cheep and seem to be fairly accurate. what sort of price range am I facing if I want a good quality small lathe that will let me drill strait holes into alumium and otherwise work with metal?


Micro lathes are good for clock makers and are powered about as well as a key cutting machine. They are unable to turn large pieces of steel at proper cutting speed. Steel has a cutting speed. Micro lathes can't do it on stuff larger than about 1/2 inch. Ok i guess if you are making BBMG's but not bigger stuff.

Reference Certainly.
http://littlemachineshop.com/Reference/CuttingSpeeds.php

Micro lathes don't have the torque.
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Last edited by Technician1002 on Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:28 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:26 am

Hmmm... I doubt it would be too difficult to kludge up some sort of simple three or four jaw chuck for turning operations on a drill press. Maybe a 3 or 4" pipe cap (steel of course) with 3/4"-10 threaded rod (or some large acme rod if you want to get fancy) going through it, and some lock nuts.

While the vise is a good idea, something to rest your tool against should suffice for most jobs. Sgort makes all his products on a wood lathe with a simple tool-rest, and they work fine...
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Unread postAuthor: john bunsenburner » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:28 am

Well could you maybe give me one or two examples of lathes within my price range worth their salt? If i get a lathe really i don't need a drill press. Also how much would a fair amount of useful tools for the lthe cost?
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:31 am

Why don't you PM the user named "Velocity". He has gone through the initial investments and setup involved when buying a lathe.
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Unread postAuthor: Technician1002 » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:33 am

mark.f wrote:Hmmm... I doubt it would be too difficult to kludge up some sort of simple three or four jaw chuck for turning operations on a drill press. Maybe a 3 or 4" pipe cap (steel of course) with 3/4"-10 threaded rod (or some large acme rod if you want to get fancy) going through it, and some lock nuts.

While the vise is a good idea, something to rest your tool against should suffice for most jobs. Sgort makes all his products on a wood lathe with a simple tool-rest, and they work fine...


Hand held on a tool rest is ok for decorative woodwork, but not for precision piston faces. The vise is the tool stock when using a drill press to machine pistons and pop off valves, hammer valves, etc.

Well could you maybe give me one or two examples of lathes within my price range worth their salt?


Um.. None?
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Unread postAuthor: john bunsenburner » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:40 am

oops, misunderstood your post tech, ill give velocity a pm. So drill press might be in the range lathe is most probably not? Ok now i need the exeption to prove the rule.
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Unread postAuthor: THUNDERLORD » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:50 am

My #1 Favorite tool is the angle grinder myself. :P :D
(not even sure why)

Back On topic, If you take some kind of school class (even go to a community college maybe) You could probably use the equipment there after class hours.
Course then you might get a job stuck doing that type labor crap forever... :roll: :P 8)
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Unread postAuthor: mark.f » Thu Apr 23, 2009 11:56 am

Technician wrote:Hand held on a tool rest is ok for decorative woodwork, but not for precision piston faces. The vise is the tool stock when using a drill press to machine pistons and pop off valves, hammer valves, etc.


Take a look at LaunchPotatoes. Every component is made on a wood lathe.
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Unread postAuthor: john bunsenburner » Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:13 pm

Seeing as how i am currently in highschool and everyday of my week is filled up with tutoring(math, chemistry, computoring, ect.) and my only free day is friday i am sadly stuck to purchasing the lathe my self. Now i am stil waiting for a price and a specific lathe, just to know in what kind of price slass i am in.
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Last edited by john bunsenburner on Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread postAuthor: Technician1002 » Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:14 pm

mark.f wrote:
Technician wrote:Hand held on a tool rest is ok for decorative woodwork, but not for precision piston faces. The vise is the tool stock when using a drill press to machine pistons and pop off valves, hammer valves, etc.


Take a look at LaunchPotatoes. Every component is made on a wood lathe.


Maybe my lack of skill is showing, but this size fit is hard to achieve on a wood lathe. The valve doesn't stick and uses no o rings.

A decent small lathe for making small metal parts (small parts) would be in this price range.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001R23SAO
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Unread postAuthor: john bunsenburner » Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:36 pm

ARG! tht is WAY out of my price range. Also i found a CNC on ebay that costs 1000$, there must be something that would be better for me. I just can't believe that this is the only thing i can get... :cry:
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