Collets for Atlas 6" Lathe?

Does anyone know if the Atlas Mk2 6" lathe can take collets? I don't
know any of the specs of my headstock.
If it is possible, where would be a good source for a holder/drawbar,
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I believe that the spindle nose taper is a Morse #2 taper, for which commercial collets are available up to 1/2" capacity.
In Canada these are available for about CDN $12 each. I believe that the magazine HOME SHOP MACHINIST has an Ad for same. I don't remember the price, though.
These collets are threaded 3/8-16UNC in the back and can use a piece of 3/8 threaded rod for a draw bar. A better draw bar can be made from a Grade 5 3/8" bolt which are available in lengths up to 8" in farm-type hardware stores. Draw bars made from these bolts last MUCH longer.
The draw-back (love that pun!) of this type of collet is that they cannot pass long work pieces through the body. But for semi-finished work pieces they work very well with superb accuracy (concentricity).
I've used a set for over 10 years until I sold the lathe. I still use the collets in a small dividing head and to hold cutters in the EMCO-MAIER vertical milling head, now mounted on a separate X - Y table.
They are good value for the money.
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Yes, I think their spindles were all M2. Such collets are available, bt have the limitations you describe.
One can also get a Bison (or similar) collet chuck to fit this lathe. This allows the popular 5C collets up to one inch capacity to be used. Stock over 1/2 inch or so will not fit throught the lathe spindle, though smaller items can pass clear through (unlike the case with Morse collets).
The 5C collets are available in low cost import form, of mixed qualities and price, but many are suitable for hobbyist use. The 5C collets are also useful for MANY other applications (spin-indexers, collet blocks, etc.).
The principal downside of such a chuck is increased overhang (less rigidity) and some loss of available length capacity (distance to tailstock). If you get one, just don't get too ambitious with depth of cut issues as rigidity is not their strong point (nor is it with this entire lathe). Still, for many things they work surprisingly well, and give the usual dvantages of collets.
Dan Mitchell ============
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Daniel A. Mitchell
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Or -- it is possible to use 3C collets for up to 1/2" through the spindle. You would require a hollow drawbar with an internal thread to match the collet's external thread, and a proper nosepiece to adapt the 3C collet to the Morse taper No. 2. But I believe that this was available from Atlas -- and from Sears when they sold this as the smaller "Craftsman" lathe.
Good Luck, DoN.
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DoN. Nichols

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