Engine Lathe Operations and Controls - 6: Spindle RPM
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WARNING: Machine tools present a safety hazard. Improper operation can result in severe injury. These topics are for non-laboratory study only and are not to be used in conjunction with the operation of any tool or machine described herein. Never use a machine tool without the supervision of a qualified instructor.

The headstock levers on a modern gear head lathe allow quick changes in speeds and feed (figure 1). Index plates are available on or below the headstock noting where various levers must be positioned to achieve the proper speed or feed or thread turning. Index plates usually show positions for both inch and metric threads. More about this on page 8.

In the past spindle speed were changed manually by moving drive belts from pulley to pulley as shown in the image of this old Logan lathe (figure 2)

Figure 2
Figure 1
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label: lathe operating, contorls, functions, parts, movements, ways, motor, headstock, spindle, brake, speeds and feeds, carraige, tailstock, centers, faceblate, dogs, threading, staedy rest, follower rest, lathe sizes, taper attachment