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Thread: Best Lathe Light

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
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    Laurinburg NC
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    Best Lathe Light

    I am in need of a good lathe light for the money. I am considering this.
    http://www.ptreeusa.com/maglites.htm
    Any of you like or dislike it? Where do you get the best price? Or have a better suggestion!

  2. #2
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    Never even considered there might be such a thing as a 'lathe light'. I just have a plain two tube flourscent overhead and it is sufficient for me. Oh, well. Do yer own thang.
    "Folks is funny critters."

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  3. #3
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    Mike, I kinda agree with Frank. I understand wanting to have the best out there, but I just have 2 garage sale lights like the one pictured. One at each end of the lathe...total cost $7.
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  4. #4
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    As I use my lathe outdoors in daytime, it's not a issue for me, but I illuminate my other tools with a clamp-on gooseneck lamp that I got at HD for $16, which I can move to the best position for the work I am doing. I use it primarily with my bandsaw, but also with my drill press quite often. If my lathe were indoors, I might get two of these lamps. Simple and cheap.
    Cheers,
    Roger


    The other member of Mensa, but not the NRA

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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    I've used overhead fluorescents, I've used clamp-on articulated desk lamps, and I've used little gooseneck LEDs. There is no comparison to a Moffat lamp with a 100 watt GE Reveal incandescent bulb. If you're really going for a high-end finish on your work, you need good lighting to see any sanding or tool marks. If you've never used good lighting, you really don't know what you're missing. The articulating desk lamps like Jeff showed are also workable with the right bulbs. (Here again, I like the Reveal bulbs the best.) The key thing for me is being able to get the light close (within a few inches) of the workpiece for close inspection between sanding grits. Also crucial is the ability to remove all sanding dust, and for me that's with an ample blast of compressed air.

    My lathe lighting setup:

    http://familywoodworking.org/forums/...ht-Up-My-Lathe
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
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  6. #6
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    Reno, Nv
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Bower View Post
    Mike, I kinda agree with Frank. I understand wanting to have the best out there, but I just have 2 garage sale lights like the one pictured. One at each end of the lathe...total cost $7.
    Other than 100w incan's in the garage ceiling and lots of flourscent tubes...a high wattage desk lamp should work for normal to moderate applications
    Your Respiratory Therapist wears Combat boots

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Burr View Post
    Other than 100w incan's in the garage ceiling and lots of flourscent tubes...a high wattage desk lamp should work for normal to moderate applications
    Yep, I have whatever is the equivalent of an old 100w bulb in them, daylight shine or whatever it's called.
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    Never even considered there might be such a thing as a 'lathe light'. I just have a plain two tube flourscent overhead and it is sufficient for me. Oh, well. Do yer own thang.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Bower View Post
    Mike, I kinda agree with Frank. I understand wanting to have the best out there, but I just have 2 garage sale lights like the one pictured. One at each end of the lathe...total cost $7.
    I have a combination of what these guys have... 2 tubes directly over the lathe and the drafting lamp with a couple of holders if I need to move it forward to work on the headstock.
    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.
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Phoenix, AZ
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    112
    The tricky part, like most things is the "for the money" you tacked on to best lathe light. I've always wanted a dental or medical light like David Marks used to have on his TV show. I've never found one under $800 or so, but know people who have found them very cheap. Second choice is the Sanders light kit from Oneway, which mounts two articulating Moffat lights like Vaughn mentioned - also very expensive. I used to have two $7 desk lamps mounted to pipe with a plywood base. Not really as adjustable as I would have liked.
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    I currently use three IKEA gooseneck LEDs and one clamp on work light attached to a bar I have mounted above and behind the lathe. These were all $10 or less each. I did find a high end LED bulb recently that is almost as good as the reveal bulbs, and doesn't get hot. The LED technology is getting better as this is the third one I've tried but the first I've left in place to actually use. I did attache HF magnets to the IKEA lights so I can move them around.
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    All this is in addition to a bunch of 8' fluorescents in the ceiling. I find as I get older I really need a lot of light.

    Ken

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    I went with Vaughn's advise and got the Moffat. It is a good lamp. Does not get too hot; but sure as heck isn't going to cool anything. I will probably enjoy that this winter. I do have dual 8' t-12 fluorescents above. I also have a couple other small flexible shaft lights hanging on a peg nearby to grab when needed.

    Enjoy,
    JimB
    First of all you have to be smarter than the machine.
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