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Delta 46-255

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gav

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Hi,

I have just aquired a delta lathe model 46-255, it doesn't seem to be a current model.

I've never had a woodturning lathe before so I have a question.

When centres are fitted to the head and tailstock and you bring them together should they align perfectly or do you expect a certain amount of tolerance.

If not anyone got any ideas on how to adjust this as I can't see any means of adjustment. It is the height alignment that seems to be out the most.

Thanks
Gav
 

CHJ

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How far out are the centres Gav? A woodworking lathe is not as critical as a metalworking lathe but the nearer the centres match the better, especially if you intend doing small diameter spindle work between centres then it will be at its most critical.

Obviously if they are out then there is going to be movement between the driving dogs and the workpiece proportional to the misalignment.
If workpiece is held in a chuck or collet then the wood will have to 'flex' by the amount of the misalignment each rotation. Neither is going to be very significant compared with the normal movement of the wood during cutting on something like a stool leg or table lamp for instance.

To check if the headstock is aligned with the bed put a piece of straight tubing or bar in a chuck fitted to the headstock and sight the bar with the bedways it should align.

The bigger the 'between centers' distance the less critical will be any misalignment of the tailstock on the workpiece as long as the headstock is aligned with the bed.
If you think the problem is in need of correction then a picture of the lathe with an indication of alignment error may help in giving you guidance on how to correct it. I can't locate a picture of the Delta 46-255 at the moment giving clear enough views to see if the headstock or tailstock can be shimmed.
 

gav

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Chas,

Thanks for the advice.

At present I only have the centres for the lathe and don't have a chuck to check the bedways for alignment as suggested.

The head does swivel round for large diameter work so there is some adjustment for alignment to the bedways there.

If I bring the tailstock up to the headstock with the centres in then I can get them to align in the horizontal by adjusting the head. In the vertical the tailstock is about 1.5 mm lower. I wasn't sure if this was significant?

I also noticed the bedways aren't completely flat, using a straightedge, they dip in the middle by 0.6 mm. So I assume the error will vary depending on the tailstock position when working between centres.

Regards
Gavin
 

CHJ

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I doubt very much if you will see anything untoward Gavin that you could attribute to just 1.5mm out of line in normal turning. If it became obvious that you had a problem that you could attribute to this error then a couple of shims under the tailstock should be good enough.

You are more likely to have the headstock out by this much (or bigger amounts dependant on location method) when you swivel it back if you do not check it.
 
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