Weekend workshop upgrade


I finally managed to pick up the 7×10 mini-lathe (on sale!) I mentioned in the diy dive light post. Seriously, there are more mods for this thing than a DS. There’s a great introduction to this handy tool over at mini-lathe.com. I’ve been looking over the mods for a while to build up my buying furvor. Bill exploited the cycle of florescent lighting to make a simple tachometer. Dave streched his (Now there’s a kit for this from the little machine shop.) I’m thinking that I’ll whip up a pic/LED tachometer for my first mod.

16 thoughts on “Weekend workshop upgrade

  1. will, if you’ve used the lathe at all – even simply for practice or screwing around – how well does it work? is it worth the money? sturdy enough? decent power, etc?

  2. Nice new lathe there! I’ve been tempted to get one of these but I just can’t think of anything I’d actually get around to using it for. (Though I am going to need some new speaker stands soon… hmmm… $400 tool + $50 in materials = one confused girlfriend… I might have to take the risk though!) I think I need a mini-mill more.

    Tell us how it works out!

  3. The hf mill and lathe are amazingly good (for the price.) I just bought the mini mill and if you have an entertainment book lying around (they’re pretty easy to come by) it had a 20% off one item at Harbor freight coupon that saved me a bit on the mill at ~$450 dollars. Theres alot of sites such as thelittlemachineshop mentioned that give pointers on gettnig the best out of these machines and doing mods. The Grizzly model pretty much is this one just different branding there all the X-2 mill from china I believe.

  4. I really could have used this when i was building my wheeled ROV!

    Cool stuff to be sure!

    (blanket party at first post’s house)

  5. Funny, I work for the company that buys stock from hf in Canada. If fact, it’s one of the reasons they won’t ship to Canada. If your a Canadian DIY’er, you can find some interesting buys (Try the “Surplus” section). Enough plugging for Princess Auto. (BTW, that same mini lathe here is about 800$ CDN regularly, though it was on sale recently)

  6. STOP! Return the lathe before you use it, and get the 8×12 model (http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=44859) The 8×12 costs about the same, but is a MUCH better lathe. The 8×12 is considerably more rigid (and heavier), and is much more heavy duty than the toy 7×12. You might think the only difference is 1′ of swing, but that’s just the beginning. Check out http://www.fignoggle.com/machines/8x12lathe/firstlook.htm

    If you ever plan to add CNC to the lathe, the 8×12 is much more suitable than the 7×12

    -Brian

    P.S. I bought my 8×12 from HF

  7. Buy some spare fuses. Especially if you’re working with brass. The fuse will protect the lathe (and you, to some extent) but it’s really annoying to be in the middle of a project without the right fuse…

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