Record largest lathe the CL is put through its paces by Terry

Document Sample
Record largest lathe the CL is put through its paces by Terry Powered By Docstoc
					                                                                                                         T E ST R E P O RT

Record’s largest
lathe, the CL3, is put
through its paces by
Terry Porter
         ver the past few years I have

O        reviewed many Record
         lathes, with one notable
exception – the CL3, their biggest. So
I was keen to test this for
  Record offer a choice of two bed
lengths, giving either 914mm (36in)
or 1,219mm (48in) between centres.       There is plenty of clear access for external bowl work.
The longer bed lathe also comes with
a double tool rest assembly with           As with all Record lathes the head            two-person job and should not be
254mm (10in) and 432mm                   and tailstock are No1 Morse taper.              tried alone.
(17in)lengths. There is also an          This is handy if you are upgrading                 The instructions that come with
optional bowl-turning attachment         from a smaller lathe, as all your               the lathe are clear, giving good
available for both sizes, which I also   drives should fit. The spindle nose             guidelines for setting up. If you are
tested, on the 36in version sent me.     thread size is 3⁄4 x 16.                        fitting the bowl-turning attachment
  As with all Record lathes, the main      The bearings on the CL3 are                   at the outset, the standard end
parts are very solid, with the           machined from 75mm (3in) diameter               bracket which supports the bed bars
headstock, tailstock, banjos and bed     phosphor bronze, and are internally             at the headstock end is removed and
bar supports of cast grey iron. Like     tapered to allow for adjustment for             replaced by the bowl-turning
other big Record lathes, the bed bars    wear. But they are not sealed for life,         bracket.
are of solid hard chromed steel. The     and must be lubricated occasionally.               I had the lathe up and running in
shorter of the two versions weighs         As you can see, the CL3 is a fairly           about an hour on the Record bench,
86kg, and the longer one, 95kg.          hefty lump, so I was interested to see          but if you fit it to your own bench, a
  For the test, I used Record’s          how it would handle hefty work. I               couple of holes are needed for the
adjustable lathe bench, which will fit   was a little unsure of having just              mounting bolts, so it may take
any of their lathes, from a 610mm        1MT at both the drive and tailstock             longer.
(24in) bed up to 1220mm (48in). It       ends; with the lathe capable of
was reviewed in Issue 80.                turning some quite big stuff                    The headstock
Alternatively, the lathe can be bolted   including up to 762mm (30in)                       The headstock is a heavy casting
to any sturdy bench.                     diameter when the headstock is                  which is, like all the cast iron parts of
  It is powered by a 3⁄4 hp Brooke       swivelled and used with the bowl-               the lathe, well fettled and finished.
Crompton motor, and offers five          turning attachment.                             Access to the pulleys for changing
speeds – 425, 625, 925, 1360 and           The lathe arrived in a strong                 speed is by a removable cast lid,
2000. I’m surprised Record does not      plywood box, and had to be partly               secured by a cheesehead Allen screw.
yet offer a variable-speed version,      taken apart for removal and                     It’s slightly tedious, and you can
but doubtless that will come.            attachment to the stand. This is a              easily lose the Allen key in the ➤

                                                                                                   WOODTURNING No 87          29

The off/on switches are well positioned on the motor.                                    Along the bed.

                                                                                              deflector plate, which fits around the
                                                                                              locking bolt between the bed bars to
                                                                                              keep debris, and liquid polish in
                                                                                              particular, from gumming up the
                                                                                              screw thread.
                                                                                                The toolrest is held in position by a
                                                                                              ratchet handle, and is firm and
                                                                                              comfortable to use. Although it is
                                                                                              not cam action, movement and
                                                                                              locking of the banjo is smooth and
                                                                                                The very solid, hard chromed
                                                                                              38mm (11⁄2in) diameter bed bars
                                                                                              provide both rigidity and a very
                                                                                              smooth bed for the cast components
                                                                                              to be moved on.
Using the CL3 for small spindle work.
                                                                                              In use
➤ shavings. But safety regulations             spindle to secure it. I’d like to see            As my first piece of work was to be
say the headstock cover must have a            some form of externally mounted                between centres, I checked to see if
securing device which needs some               spindle locking device here.                   the swivelling headstock’s lining up
kind of key to open it.                          The off/on switch is of a no-volt            mark gave true alignment. Tail and
   Speed changing is simply done by            release type, and well situated on the         head centres met point to point, so
loosening the lever holding the motor          motor, which has a label to remind             that was fine.
in position, and pulling the motor             the operator of the five speeds                  When switching on I was surprised
forward to loosen the belt for                 available.                                     by how quietly the lathe ran. It must
changing the pulley.                                                                          be all that grey iron and the
   The drive spindle is not hollow, so         Tailstock & banjo                              substantial bearings! Working in 4th
a knock-out bar cannot be used to                 The tailstock is solid and firm, and        gear at 1360 rpm, I was able to turn
remove drives. But this poses no real          slides along the bed very smoothly.            a table leg without any vibration or
problem, as the knurled thread                 Locking in position is by means of a           power problems.
protector on the spindle nose doubles          simple lever underneath. The barrel              I used a Record heavy-duty
as a drive-centre ejector.                     is hollow, so a knock-out bar can be           revolving centre rather than the dead
   The only problem with this system           used, and long hole boring can also            centre which came with the lathe,
is that the spindle has to be locked,          be done.                                       and also the four-prong drive centre
which can only be done by removing                The banjo unit is a strong casting,         provided. I completed my turning
the headstock’s lid and using the              and is also locked in place by a               quickly, with a good finish, and no
spanner supplied on two flats on the           simple lever. There is a neat little           feeling that it could have been done

                                                                                                       T E ST R E P O RT

Ready for bowl turning.                                        The bowl turning bracket could be unforgiving to bump into.

better on a much more expensive          fiddly, but effective. I rough turned
lathe.                                   a heavy lump of green oak using the
   The only shortcoming was that I       bowl-turning attachment, and got               Prices
used the 254mm (10in) toolrest           satisfactory results with no real
provided, instead of the 432mm           problems. Although I had a little              A special price for this lathe is
(17in) longer rest, which would be       trouble locating the wood with                 £599 (including VAT) for the CL3
more suitable for turning a leg. The     the faceplate onto the spindle nose            including stand.
longer rest for the 36in lathe can be    after mounting the wood on a                   The CL3B, bowl turning
bought as an extra, but don’t forget     Record faceplate (an extra). This              attachment is £64.99, and the
that you will also need a second         was chiefly because the fine thread            bench is currently available at
banjo unit for it.                       on the 1MT spindle made it difficult           £99.99 separately.
   Using the lathe at 2000 rpm, I did    to get a start.
some small turning between centres.        For larger bowl work I’m used to a           For further information contact
It would have been easier with a         2 or 3MT spindle with a much                   Record Power Ltd,
shorter toolrest (a 125mm,5in rest is    coarser thread. Ideally, both the CL2          Parkway Works, Sheffield S9 3BL.
available), but I was delighted with     and CL3 lathes would be better                 Tel: 0114 244 9066.
the very smooth finish I was able to     having a 2MT spindle with a coarser            Fax: 0114 261 7141.
effortlessly get off the skew. Between   thread.
centres the CL 36 is very good indeed      I found the rest slightly springy, but
on both large and small work.            not excessively so, given that I was
                                         taking heavy cuts with a big gouge.          In conclusion
Bowl turning                             The tubular bowl-turning rest was               The CL3 has a five-year warranty
   For turning bigger bowls, the         limited in its use, and I did most of        from Record and, at about £600
headstock is swivelled to the front      my turning with the excellent                including stand, give you a lot for
and an extra cast-iron mounting          250mm (10in) straight rest.                  your money when compared to
arm, the swivel bracket, is fixed to       I’d like to see Record introduce a         some other lathes, which offer
the bowl-turning bracket. The            cast bowl-turning rest with proper           similar features for hundreds of
toolrest banjo is then borrowed from     profiling here. For wider diameter           pounds more.
its normal position on the bed bars,     turnings, the headstock can be slid             It is Sheffield made, has excellent
and used either with the standard        along the lathe bed as required.             castings, is well finished and will last
toolrest, or with the tubular steel        Overall, the bowl-turning                  for many years. I’ve mentioned a
bowl turning rest.                       attachment worked effectively with           few minor niggles, but overall found
   The swivel bracket can be locked      satisfactory results being obtained          it very good for spindle work, and
in position using the bracket-           with little problem. Of course, work         perfectly satisfactory for outboard
clamping screw and, if extra firm        up to 305mm (12in) can be turned             bowl work.
locking is needed, by tightening a       over the bed, but at only £70 extra,            A good range of accessories is
secondary locking screw with a hex       the bowl-turning attachment is               available, and Record has many
wrench from beneath. This is slightly    worth buying.                                outlets throughout Britain. s

                                                                                             WOODTURNING No 87               31