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Thread: You...You Light Up My Lathe

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    ABQ NM
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    You...You Light Up My Lathe

    I've had a Moffatt lamp attached to the headstock of my lathe since I first set it up. It's been great, but it's not long enough to reach around a lot of larger pieces. I decided to build an articulating arm to mount the lamp on. I stole this idea from my buddy Philip Morris on another forum, but modified it a bit to elevate the horizontal arm enough to clear large pieces and my DC scoop.

    Here is it folded up, and tucked in close to the headstock...

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    ...and partially extended...

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    ...and fully extended, beyond the end of the lathe bed...

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    When it's stretched out all the way, it sags a bit, but I don't anticipate using it out there a lot. It will be handy, though, for times when I'm using the tail end of the lathe bed as a spare bench space for things like signing the bottoms of pieces and such. It'll also reach the Workmate I have set up behind the lathe, as well as the bandsaw to the left of the headstock.

    The whole thing is mounted to the lathe with this. It's a 3/4" hardened steel bolt welded to a piece of solid 1" x 1" steel bar. Here's another pic...the old guy at a local machine shop did it for me in a couple of minutes, then refused to let me pay for it. Lock washers keep it in place, but I also drilled a detent hole in the bolt so I can use the spring pin for a little extra backup. (The bracket and spring pin were originally for mounting the wire safety cage that I've never attached to the lathe.)

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The vertical bar (the solid steel one) is tapped in the top end to accept a 7/16" hardened steel bolt. The threads go about 1 1/4" down into the end of the bar for strength. I've got bronze thrust bearings (look like washers to me) top and bottom to allow the horizontal arm to swivel without loosening the bolt.

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    The horizontal arms are 12" long 1" square tube, and the joints are just 5/16" (I think) bolts with nylon washers between the pivot points and the tightening knobs. The nylon washers allow me to tighten things up so they don't move unless I want them to.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The end piece has a stud bolted onto it to accept the quick-release swivel connection at the base of the Moffet lamp. (The stud is normally mounted on a bracket.)

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    And another shot showing the base of the lamp attached...

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    I have another Moffet lamp that's mounted on a non-swiveling magnetic base. I move it wherever is handy, but much of the time it lives stuck to the bottom of my hanging air filter.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Between the two lamps, my lathe area is pretty well-lit now.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    Tokyo Japan
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    What a bright idea.......... illuminating even

    Seriously, that is cool!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    ABQ NM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    What a bright idea.......... illuminating even...
    Me, I thought it was a shining example of articulating a brilliant solution to a dark issue.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Delton, Michigan
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    17,472
    great idea vaughn but in the last 3 pics all i could think off was those poor flat work tools just being neglected by you becasue of that big mustard rascal you even had some of the coverd up like a evacuated old house
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tellico Plains, Tennessee
    Posts
    4,351
    Vaughn,
    That is a bright idea!
    I have a couple of spots mounted on the rafters of my shop that shine down on the lathe.. sometimes they get a little warm, but lights up my work... still have to have a flashlight handy for hollow forms so I can see inside them.

    I have an articulated desk lamp over my mini lathe, but usually it's in the way... every time I get it set right, I bang it with my head and knock it out of alignment..
    Last edited by Chuck Ellis; 05-24-2009 at 03:46 PM.
    Chuck
    Tellico Plains, TN
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/TellicoTurnings
    My parents taught me to respect my elders, but it's getting harder and harder to find any.
    If you go looking for trouble, it will usually find you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    199
    Vaughn your arm looks great. It is very functional and has a great amount of reach and movement. I wish every lathe manufacture would make these arms as standard equipment or at least as an optional accessory. I love the Moffat lamps I think they are the best lamp going for task lighting in the shop. Thanks for sharing It always helps to see how others tackle a common problem such as enough light.

    Its funny as I have gotten older light has become more important. When I was 20 I could see by moonlight now its hard to see on an overcast day.

    When I built my stand I also built an articulated arm that has a decent amount of reach. But it did mine so I could reach the arm over the bed so I had a light source when my headstock was swiveled for outboard turning. I have added another mounting bracket on mine for a second lamp since this photo was taken. At the time I built the arm the second lamp was planned but just wanted to get turning and I was also broke and did not want to spend the money.

    Vaughn, again thanks for sharing such an enlightening idea.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Light Pic 1.jpg   Light Pic 2.jpg   Light Pic 3.jpg  

  7. #7
    Okay! now I am upset! BLACK! on a mustard!!! Should I send you a can of mustard spray paint...

    Well done even if you did use black paint!
    Remember the tea kettle - it is always up to its neck in hot water, yet it
    still sings!

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Constantine, MI
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn McMillan View Post
    Me, I thought it was a shining example of articulating a brilliant solution to a dark issue.
    I don't know. Seems like a Boone-doggle to me.
    Host of the 2017 Family Woodworking Gathering - Sunken Wood

    We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will. - Chuck Palahniuk
    www.wrworkshop.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
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    618
    A brilliant idea, Vaughn!

    Well executed, too.
    Why has common sense
    become so uncommon?

    My Woodwork Site

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Goodland, Kansas
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    Vaughn cool idea and looks like it will work fine.
    Bernie W.

    Retirement: Thats when you return from work one day
    and say, Hi, Honey, Im home forever.

    To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone.

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