A lathe (pronounced /ˈleɪð/) is a machine tool which rotates the workpiece on its axis to perform various operations such as cutting, sanding, knurling, drilling, ordeformation with tools that are applied to the workpiece to create an object which has symmetry about an axis of rotation. *
Lathes are used in woodturning, metalworking, metal spinning, and glassworking. Lathes can be used to shape pottery, the best-known design being the potter's wheel. Most suitably equipped metalworking lathes can also be used to produce most solids of revolution, plane surfaces and screw threads or helices. Ornamental lathes can produce three-dimensional solids of incredible complexity. The material can be held in place by either one or two centers, at least one of which can be moved horizontally to accommodate varying material lengths. Other workholding methods include clamping the work about the axis of rotation using a chuck or collet, or to a faceplate, using clamps or dogs. Parts:
A lathe may or may not have a stand (or legs), which sits on the floor and elevates the lathe bed to a working height. Some lathes are small and sit on aworkbench or table, and do not have a stand. Almost all lathes have a bed, which is (almost always) a horizontal beam (although some CNC lathes have a vertical beam for a bed to ensure that swarf, or chips, falls free of the bed). A notable exception is the Hegner VB36 Master Bowlturner, a woodturning lathe designed for turning large bowls, which in its basic configuration is little more than a very large floor-standing headstock. At one end of the bed (almost always the left, as the operator faces the lathe) is a headstock. The headstock contains high-precision spinning bearings. Rotating within the bearings is a horizontal axle, with an axis parallel to the bed, called the spindle. Spindles are often hollow, and have exterior threads and/or an interior Morse taper on the "inboard" (i.e., facing to the right / towards the...
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