Faceplate for Minilathe

I was working on a new reel design, and realized that several operations would best be done with the parts clamped to a faceplate.
IMG_5532
The problem, however, is that on my Minilathe, the carriage cannot travel far enough left to get the toolpost in position. The travel is OK for a part held in a 3 jaw chuck, but not for a part clamped to a thin faceplate. The large handwheel for carriage travel interferes with the box of variable speed drive electronics.
In this picture, you can see that I long ago added an acrylic plate as a chip shield. It also restricts carriage travel, but is no worse than the handwheel.

The first thing that occurred to me was that the electronics box needed to be relocated. It was really stupid of the designer to put it in this position.
IMG_5533
The rack and the leadscrew are both capable of moving the carriage far enough left to allow faceplate use, it is only the electronics box restricting travel.

But then I saw that it would be much easier to just move the handwheel.
IMG_5534

So I made this extender for the handwheel shaft.
IMG_5541

Here the extender is installed.
IMG_5540

I made a 4 inch diameter faceplate on my mill.
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Here is the faceplate installed and finish turned.
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2 Responses to Faceplate for Minilathe

  1. Leo Suchy says:

    Hey Dave,
    great example of home shop trouble shooting. May I guess, some parts of the intended reel are larger than the chuck? I am also thinking about making a faceplate for my small lathe to be able to make the frame for a somewhat large-ish reel.
    I’m looking forward to your new reel.

    Best regards!
    Leo

  2. dave49 says:

    Leo,
    That is a good guess, but the faceplate will be for working on a 2.5 inch spool and a 2.9 inch frame. I need the extra space on the periphery for clamps. On previous designs of similar size, I did the rough work with my mill and took only finishing cuts with my Sherline lathe, for which I had a faceplate. In this case, I am trying to make the Minilathe as versatile as the Sherline. It is a “Perfect” style design and I am unable to put the spool on a simple mandrel due to internal threads.
    Good to hear from you,
    Dave

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