A good friend gave me a UNiMAT SL1000 lathe this weekend

The machine is older than me, but appears to be a later model in this production run judging from the color. I have found one broken part, the capture nut to hold down the tooling block.

Now I need to get the rest of the tools needed to use this correctly and learn how to use it safely.

I think this will be a good complement to my blacksmithing as well as allowing me to make some custom parts for a wide variety of my other hobbies: aquaponics, woodworking, electronics, computer mods, and so on.

And of course, the idea of converting it into a CNC is in the back of my mind.

In album

A friend gave me a UNiMAT mini lathe. He rescued it from the trash.

About to cut a bevel on the inside and cut down the outside so I can stack 2 different sizes and make a funnel out of PVC for my aquaponics bell siphon.

I tried the ‘sharpen a pencil on a lathe’ trick. I needed to use a different tool than what came with the lathe though.

I bit of a mess… PVC and wood shavings.

I want to hang this roll of craft paper under the table, so I am making spindles that fit inside and let it roll off.

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11 Replies to “A good friend gave me a UNiMAT SL1000 lathe this weekend”

  1. Stuff you'll probably want to start out with. I'll put up Harbor Freight examples, but you might find cheaper sources online.

    6" digital caliper. Not as accurate as, say, a micrometer, but much more flexible and useful. This one goes on sale regularly for $15.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/6-inch-digital-caliper-47257.html

    HSS cutting blanks. You can try some of that silicon steel, but I don't know if it'll hold an edge. Look into tool grinding online.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/5-piece-metalworking-lathe-replacement-blades-40088.html

    Dial indicator and support structure. You'll need this for centering round parts on that 4 jaw chuck, and checking your machine for bad bearings or assemblies.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/1-inch-travel-machinists-dial-indicator-623.html

    There's tons more, of course, but that will get you the basics of tooling and measuring.

  2. Stuff you'll probably want to start out with. I'll put up Harbor Freight examples, but you might find cheaper sources online.

    6" digital caliper. Not as accurate as, say, a micrometer, but much more flexible and useful. This one goes on sale regularly for $15.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/6-inch-digital-caliper-47257.html

    HSS cutting blanks. You can try some of that silicon steel, but I don't know if it'll hold an edge. Look into tool grinding online.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/5-piece-metalworking-lathe-replacement-blades-40088.html

    Dial indicator and support structure. You'll need this for centering round parts on that 4 jaw chuck, and checking your machine for bad bearings or assemblies.

    http://www.harborfreight.com/1-inch-travel-machinists-dial-indicator-623.html

    There's tons more, of course, but that will get you the basics of tooling and measuring.

  3. I really want a lathe like that one. Probably a might get one latter on.
    I think that Harbor Freight is the best placed to get calipers and micrometers at a great price. You may also want to check on ebay. There is a fellow in NY that sells used instruments on ebay. And he has a lot of good stuff.

  4. I really want a lathe like that one. Probably a might get one latter on.
    I think that Harbor Freight is the best placed to get calipers and micrometers at a great price. You may also want to check on ebay. There is a fellow in NY that sells used instruments on ebay. And he has a lot of good stuff.

  5. I have one of those, too, but just a wee bit newer. Just went through it and repainted it as well. I bought mine new in 1973, but PLEASE clean off the rust!! it looks nasty on there! The little SL 100 is a good machine, It can do many things and I am finding more places to obtain parts and accessories. I have found a chat room that is for these machines as well. Plenty of good information and ideas there.

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