new to lathes

I just got my hands on a sherline 4400 mini-lathe. I know how metal
behaves with a file/saw/hammer- just not with machine tools.
I've been playing with some brass and learned about the drill bit leaving
triangular holes and other non-obvious things. I was able to turn down
some aluminum castings I made, but other than just making random shapes,
I'm somewhat at a loss as to where to get started. There's got to be
defacto books written 1000 years ago I need to grab.
What's suggested around here?
Reply to
Cydrome Leader
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======== Take a look at
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Lots of reprints of the older books stressing manual machining and the price is right.
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For an overview of the manual machining processes I suggest
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For the Sherline you may also find the following helpful
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While the manual machining techniques describe remain valid remember these are reprints from long ago, so don't get too involved looking for specific obsolete parts and materials like one student that spent several weeks hunting for a Skinner chuck as described in Milne.
For the slightly more advance manual machinist see
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FWIW -- you can shorten the learning cycle and avoid establishing some dangerous habits [e.g. not wearing safety glasses] by taking an introductory machining class at your local vo-tech or community college. If you take one or more machining classes as a non credit, this generally makes the enrollment process much easier, i.e. no transcripts, etc.
Good luck on your self education and welcome to the Machining fraternity. [and be sure to always wear safety glasses/goggles when running a machine]
-- Unka George (George McDuffee) .............................. The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there. L. P. Hartley (1895-1972), British author. The Go-Between, Prologue (1953).
Reply to
F. George McDuffee
The owner of Sherline, Joe Martin, has what appears to be a very good book called "Tabletop Machining", ISBN 0-9665433-0-0. I say "appears to be" because I've read it and it all seems clear and seems to make sense, but I have zero experience with a lathe so I can't really evaluate whether the descriptions work in real life.
Reply to
Joe Pfeiffer
It kind of sounds like you're looking for a project to learn by. I can't help you there, but a good intro to machining is: "Fundamentals of machine technology" by Olivo (not "Fundamentals of machine _tool_ technology"). Amazon used for as little as $5.
Bob
Reply to
Bob Engelhardt
At MITRE I inherited a Sherline lathe and mill and "Tabletop Machining" from a lab I cleaned out. (Bad omen for a technician -- labs turning into offices)
The book is excellent.
Aluminum is good for practice. You can get up to perhaps 1/4" aluminum and brass rod from a welding supplier and 1/2" Al at a hardware store. Hobby and model airplane stores have useful rod and tubing stock too. PVC pipe behaves pretty well if properly supported. Lathes that small are frustrating and disappointing on steel.
You will quickly learn that metal isn't nearly as stiff as you thought.
jsw
Reply to
Jim Wilkins
Try one of Rudy's videos or books. Good instructor for the beginner.
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Reply to
BJ
Lathes will come to you after you figure out the sandpaper:
Posted by Cydrome Leader on June 30, 2008, 5:55 pm
Frank
Reply to
Frank J Warner
Cydrome Leader was trolling.
Reply to
ATP
I think maybe Frank is too .
Reply to
Snag
Figure out what you want to do with it. Then get some books and read up. Clocks, live steam, railroads, engines, gun parts, whatever. There's specialty magazines and books out there covering all those areas. B&N usually has The Home Shop Machinist and some of the other Village Press publications on the magazine racks. There's a number of books on using small lathes, a lot are British and over-priced for the information in them, but the ones I have are good, see what you can turn up on Amazon searching for "Workshop Series". Don't buy them from Amazon, their associated dealers have much better prices. There's also The Model Engineer, which a really well-stocked library will have bound back issues of. It's another British magazine, but had a lot of articles on making tooling and using small lathes. Also multi-issue projects, castings for which may still be had, at least for some.
If you need general machining texts, archive.org has a bunch of oldies for free, "lathe", "machining", "machine shop", maybe "Audels", as search terms should turn up a bunch of stuff to keep you busy.
Stan
Reply to
stans4
Trolling is different from deliberate taunting. In the case of the archived post by CL above, the taunt was toward a specific member of our little community. It was one of several, including among other things the proper use of a hammer ("I have a hammer. Which end do I hold?"). CL appeared to find these posts humorous when they were actually malignant and immature, like a 12-year-old farting in an elevator. Tee-hee-hee.
CL has a personality disorder that does not tolerate what the rest of us might call basic questions about metalworking. This is rec.crafts.metalworking, not pro.machinist.40yrs.experience. He doesn't have the right to determine whether or not a participant's question is "basic" or "advanced." If he feels it isn't, he should just STFU instead of acting like a 6th-grader at recess.
I see that others responded to CL's query about Sherline lathes as if it were genuine. Perhaps it was, which makes the whole thing sort of ironic. I've forgotten more about Sherline lathes than CL will ever learn. Had the OP been anyone different I might have helped. But I've already spent enough time on this prick.
Frank
Reply to
Frank J Warner
See if you can find "How to run a Lathe" by South bend lathe works.
Often reprint companies have it - since you don't have have a SB - it shows basic operation. Lindsy has some other books. I'd search Amazon as many book sellers and people sell books there. Might find a bookstore selling off estate books.
Martin
Reply to
Martin Eastburn
I remember the exchange. The particular member he was taunting/trolling has proven to be quite intelligent and a quick study, showing that it's a good thing to ask questions.
Reply to
ATP

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