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Author Topic: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand  (Read 129430 times)

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AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« on: November 07, 2010, 03:27:48 AM »

280mm X 750mm
12mm tool height
Headstock MT4
Tailstock MT2

So they say the best way to learn is to do. I and suspect most of you learn by puling something to bits and in the process of trying to put it back together add a few things here and there for kicks and giggles.

I managed to pick up this lathe on the cheap because a customer the supplier had puled the motor of it as a replacement for a customer, this suited me great as it was my intention to replace the standard 1hp 1ph (240v) motor with a 3ph motor and a vsd.

I brought this machine mostly because I really needed a lathe for general use in the shop, I love guns so brought it long (they do a 500mm version as well) with the intention of fitting barrels in her.

Picked up the lathe at 10am back home by 1pm had it in bits by 1:05pm

Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2010, 03:36:41 AM »
After thinking about it a lot and spending way to much time looking at pictures on the Internet i have decided that it will be a fully enclosed machine, this way i don't have to worry about the coolant or the chips getting out or the dust getting in (I share the floor with a woodworker).

This is a work in progress so don't be surprised if something changes.

Here is the new stand with coolant drain:

Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2010, 04:11:57 AM »
You can see in this next picture that I have the wheel plates welded up and the wheels bolted on, also i have removed the gearing off the old motor system. Originally the machine was set up with 6 different speeds 125rpm to 2000rpm. I managed to find a brand new 2hp 3ph motor for $70NZD ($50US) with a native rpm of 1400, this was the slowest i could find, there were some 3hp motors for around the same price but i was worried about the physical sizing.
So why did i choose 1400rpm, with the vsd ill be able to slow it down to what ever speed I want, I was however worried about the cooling of the motor at low speeds as well as the torque I figure the closer to the native rpm of the motor the better for cooling. If i want to go faster I can gear it up some, ill be running at top speed so cooling wont be a problem and with twice the motor power torque shouldn't be a problem ether.

For some reason i can edit my first couple of posts, if someone can help me with this i have resized the images.
Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2010, 04:24:02 AM »
For those of you who have not yet worked it out, yes that gaping big hole in the middle is for all of the chips, the plan is to have some kind of bin under the machine that I can empty every so often, i have to work out how to get the coolant out of the bin and into the tank which will also be underneath. I have bought a tank and pump already but have not yet decided if ill keep the tank, its sort of tall and small generally.
Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2010, 04:36:30 AM »
Wheels on machines is essential if you don't have forks especially if you run any woodworking equipment as the dust just goes every ware. i have learned however that you need to have wind down feed to both level the machine properly as well as have more of a stable footprint. I'm not sure where the feet will end up but they will be in there some ware.
Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2010, 04:56:32 AM »
So it seems that I'm going to fully enclose both the top and the bottom of the machine thanks to Bobs blog  (www.cnccookbook.com) staring Dave Decaussin from fadal, both of his machines are oh so sexy!

Pictures with both the back and one of the ends on, you can also see part of the coolant tank.

You'll see that i have also put holes in the sheet metal this was to assist with spot welding the sheet metal to the frame, in hind sight im not sure this was worth the trouble. The idea was that i would have no weld marks when i was done but welding it from the inside out would have achieved the same thing, live an learn.
Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2010, 04:58:47 AM »
Another thing id do different is to build the frame around the sheet rather than the sheet around the frame, the sheet is all cut on a laser so its dead square this would have really helped along the way with the frame assembling.
Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2010, 05:04:40 AM »
So you went to bed last night having a quick look on the forums before bed (like a good addict) and today wham a new machine build and boy is he fast!
Not quite I've been working on this machine for id say 3 months, I run my own business (that has nothing to do with metal anything) and have four children with the oldest being 5 so there is not a lot of time for CNC projects. I didnt want to start the blog until i had a fair bit done that way it wouldn't be another one of those fly by night new machine builds. Anyway enjoy.
Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2010, 05:27:03 AM »
I've made really good progress, I had my brother back over for dinner (can you give me a hand to move something) and so have the lathe re mounted, also have 3 of the 4 sides covered, the front and rear doors cut and folded  and i also got a coolant try folded up for the mill as well (see it there in the back of the pic, a ZAY45 mill was my first cnc project).

The 19" rack system:
I worked as a roadie for 15 years and really came to appreciate having a standardized modular system. Now that I work in computers I appreciate the same 19" rack mounting system that has been scaled out for servers. id have to say the computer guys have an even better way of dealing with the masses of cables than the roadies do.
Anyway I built the cabinet on the same 19" rack mount system, i don't yet know if this was a good or bad thing but time will tell.

Below: the rear rack door folded and positioned ready to figure out if my hinging system is going to work out the way i thought it would. Also shows a good view of the new motor

Re: AL54b (lathe) project from New Zealand
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2010, 05:40:04 AM »
Good news the VSDs have arrived, I ordered 2x 3hp single phase to 3ph Hyundai N50 from driveswarehouse.com sesorless vector drives $250 US each (one for the mill one for the lathe) i figured one day i might like to go to a 3hp motor and for the few extra dollars it cost to go to the 3hp driver why not.
I have to say i am very happy with the drivers, they are more like computers than PLC's or at least the ones i worked on in the past. The go up to 400hz the guys recommend a maximum of 80hz for my motor (240v 50hz is NZ standard). I have one all wired up an spinning that little machine silly.

I do have 415v 3 phase power in the workshop but wanted the vsd for spindle control and ordered it in single phase as I am likely to move into a new place soon and will not likely have 3ph power.

Very happy, time to make chips!
« Last Edit: February 19, 2013, 12:39:40 PM by Chaoticone »