Clishay Lathe size

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Crashbig
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Location: Tucson,AZ

Clishay Lathe size

Post by Crashbig » Wed Dec 20, 2017 10:46 am

I recently picked up the book on building the Clishay and I have access to one of the Harbor Freight 7x12 mini lathes. Would that be big enough to profile the wheels, they seem to be the biggest part that needs turning. Starting to try and plan this out and gather materials for some of the simple things I can build, my shop is mostly woodworking tools, but figured I could get the base plate cut and drilled and the frame started. Thanks for the help.

Wolfgang
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Location: S-W Ontario

Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Wolfgang » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:10 pm

What is the unfinished wheel diameter???

Mr Ron
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Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Mr Ron » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:19 pm

I'm sure the mini lathe would work, providing you don't push it too hard. Don't forget, you will need a mill for the other parts. Are you building the 3/4" scale version?
Mr.Ron from South Mississippi

Crashbig
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Location: Tucson,AZ

Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Crashbig » Wed Dec 20, 2017 3:13 pm

Yeah not sure what I'm going to do for the mill, as far as the unfinished wheel size, I've been looking at ones on DLS and their 4.7 inces at the flange, was going to do it at 1.5 scale. This is my first endeavor on something this large, I've got a decent size 1.20.3 garden railway, but kitbashing with plastic is a bit different than machining real parts.

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Pipescs
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Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Pipescs » Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:23 pm

but kitbashing with plastic is a bit different than machining real parts.
Don't sell yourself short. Kit bashing is one step from making from scratch.

Before you by something from Harbor freight (which carries no spare parts or service on their products) look at used equipment that you may be able to find with tooling. Then look at Grizzly or Jet. They, at least for a few years, will offer parts and service.
Charlie Pipes
USMC Retired

Current Projects:

2.5 Baldwin 2-4-2/2-4-4/0-4-4 Conversion (What ever)
Little Engines American Restoration
Bobber Caboose

Berkman
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Joined: Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:55 pm

Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Berkman » Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:44 pm

I thought Jet were actually pretty darn high quality considering that not many companies make manual knee mills etc outside of the far east or eastern europe.

Not cheap....https://www.southern-tool.com/store/jet ... achine.php

Pontiacguy1
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Location: Tennessee, USA

Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Pontiacguy1 » Wed Dec 20, 2017 10:58 pm

My father-in-law just bought one of those 7x12 lathes from the Internet, exact same thing that Harbor Freight sells. If you buy one and think you're going to be able to unwrap it, bolt it down, plug it in, and start making chips, you're going to be extremely disappointed! If my father-in-law wasn't a retired tool and die maker, and didn't know how to correct all the issues with it, he'd have been sending it back! That thing had a lot of problems with adjustments, parts not made and fitting correctly, tight and loose spots, etc. From what I hear, the Grizzly stuff is made in the same place, but they have a lot higher quality demands, and a completely different tailstock too. The old saying "you get what you pay for " is definitely true when it comes to these little machines.

Berkman
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Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Berkman » Thu Dec 21, 2017 8:53 am

It was a jet he bought Pontiacguy ?

Crashbig
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Location: Tucson,AZ

Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Crashbig » Thu Dec 21, 2017 2:35 pm

The lathe is my brother in-laws, he uses it to make little parts for his R/C cars. I haven't had a chance to play around with it yet, but if its not going to be accurate I might be better served looking for something myself. I've heard good things about used south bend 9's. Time to start saving those pennies.

Pontiacguy1
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Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Pontiacguy1 » Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:43 pm

The lathe he bought was a no-name brand, but all the research showed it's the same manufacturer and all as the HF lathe of the same size, and that they also make Grizzly and a couple of other brands. We figured that what was probably happening was that the factory ran and sorted their 'first quality' stuff to use on the name-brand items such as Grizzly. The other parts that weren't quite up to the standards set by the name brand companies were then assembled and sold as an off-brand lathe. It took a lot of work to get it where it would run like you would expect a new machine to.

To answer a question about your wheels... Why not just buy CNC machined steel wheels? You can buy them fairly cheap, and those things get to be rather tedious to make. I have machined several sets of trucks in my lifetime, and machining all of those 8 wheels is a chore. You could probably machine a 4" wheel on that 7" machine, but it's going to be slow and take a while just because you aren't going to be able to take much of a cut. These small lathes were really made to do small work and you'll end up with a lot of chatter if you don't go slow. Still, if that's what you have, with some patience you can turn out a respectable set of wheels with it. Will take a lot of practice and like I said, the going will be slow.

If you are going to look for a larger machine, try to get one that is 10" or somewhere around there. I have a 9" South Bend, and it is a good little lathe for certain things. I can machine 4 1/2" diameter wheels on it, but again it takes time and is slow. Anything above that and it really doesn't have enough power or rigidity to do much.

Crashbig
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Joined: Thu Sep 08, 2016 12:54 pm
Location: Tucson,AZ

Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by Crashbig » Thu Dec 21, 2017 4:36 pm

I had though about buying the pre-machined wheels, but I would like to learn how to do it, figured I would buy 16 of them and practice on the first eight and use them for the riding car, if their not all the same dimension it wouldn't be as critical as the ones on the Clishay with them all being connected with the drive chains.

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pat1027
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Re: Clishay Lathe size

Post by pat1027 » Thu Dec 21, 2017 7:57 pm

I have a Clishay my dad built largely built on an Atlas 6" lathe with a milling attachment. This combination was slow and part way through the build he bought Ames Triplex mill (cool little machine). But the valves and cylinder were made on the 6" lathe and milling attachment. The Clishay was intended as a beginners locomotive for people who did have a full compliment of machine tools.

My first lathe was an Atlas 6". It did a nice job turning wheels and axles for cars. Being a small machine there is a limit to it's rigidity. You can't throw a bigger motor on it and start hogging out stock. But use it within it's capability and it's a nice machine. My second is a 9" South Bend Model A. I've turned the drivers for a USRA 2-8-2 on it. That's 8-3/4" finished diameter over the flanges. The 9" South Bend is actually a little over 9". It took some thought and some patience but they finished nicely.

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