Wood Lathe: Design, Features, and Model Overview

Wood Lathe: Design, Features, and Model Overview

A wood lathe is a device with which wood products are processed. In its structure, it is similar to devices that are used for metal processing, however, there are functional differences. To choose a suitable mini-machine for the home workshop, it is necessary to study their structure, basic technical characteristics, as well as the model range.

Types of woodworking machines

Today, there are three main varieties of turning units for processing wooden workpieces, depending on their purpose:

  • industrial (for large enterprises);
  • semi-professional (for small enterprises);
  • desktop (for domestic use).

The devices of the first type are characterized by high performance, so they are used for mass production of various products. From a functional point of view, they have no equal, since they are able to carry out a large amount of work of various kinds in a minimum amount of time. The mass of such devices is not less than 200 kg, and the minimum power indicator is 1 kW.

Semi-professional machines used for small productions are characterized by smaller dimensions and, accordingly, weight. Their weight ranges from 40 to 90 kg, and the functionality is much less than that of industrial devices, but it is enough to meet the needs of a small workshop. The power indicator of such units varies from 0.5 to 1 kW.

Desktop devices are used exclusively for domestic purposes. As a rule, such a device is installed on a workbench or any other work surface and is used to process single parts from wood. The mass of the mini-lathe on wood does not exceed 20-40 kg, and the power indicator is always below 0.5 kW.

Note! To select a turning device, you must first build on its purpose, as well as the availability of individual functions.

Types of woodworking machines
When choosing a model of a lathe, it is worth understanding what tasks will need to be implemented

Today you can find many varieties of turning devices for wood processing, which are used at home. They differ in their functionality, as well as a number of other characteristics. Consider the most popular devices used by home craftsmen to process wood blanks:

  • milling;
  • screw;
  • copy milling;
  • thicknessers;
  • CNC devices.

Wood turning and milling machines are used, as a rule, for boring grooves. Screw assemblies are used to apply thread to a workpiece and obtain parts under the cone. Devices equipped with a copier allow you to receive products of unusual shapes and perform work much faster and more accurately.

Copy machines use special stencils. Thicknessing machines allow you to plan the board. CNC wood lathes are automatic units that operate according to a given program.

Lathe device for home workshop

Such mini-machines differ from metal-working turning devices in that they do not require a cooling system. The power indicator of the woodworking unit is also less. This is due to the physical characteristics of the material that is processed on such equipment. Wood blanks are much better suited to grinding or turning, therefore, to work with them does not require a lot of power.

Units for home workshops take into account the possibility of regulating the speed of rotation. The main structural elements of this device, which relate to the functional part, are: cartridge and cutters.

The main function of the chuck for a wood lathe is to ensure reliable fixation of the workpiece, which has a certain cross section indicator. In turn, the cutter is used for manual work on a mini-machine that does not have a support. As a rule, cutter assemblies are used for the manufacture of various household utensils (for example, shovel cuttings), as well as for performing simple blanks for painting.

The cartridge is fixed to the front assembly (headstock), which includes a gearbox. This important structural element of the machine is distinguished by a cam device.

Lathe device for home workshop
Machines for home use, as a rule, take into account the possibility of regulating the speed of rotation

Due to the presence of the cam mechanism, it becomes possible to securely fix the workpiece in the cartridge, and this is very important for normal operation. The cartridge is massive and is responsible for the exact change in the position of the workpiece during its processing. And also this device rotates the processed wood product.

The rear assembly includes a cone-shaped opening. It is necessary to install the center, the function of which is to fix the wooden disc. Often such a thrust unit is sold separately. It is not difficult to buy a tailstock of a lathe, since there are many offers on its sale on the Internet.

Mini-machines are able to cope with a basic set of technical operations. Consider what can be done on wood lathes:

  • turning;
  • trimming;
  • grinding;
  • grooves;
  • drilling holes;
  • threading.

Helpful information! School models of machines that process wooden workpieces are very popular in amateur workshops. Such units are recommended for the simplest tasks (cropping, turning), as well as for understanding the operation of such devices at the initial level. Over time, it becomes possible to use the acquired knowledge to work on more complex equipment.

Desktop machines
Desktop machines are distinguished by their small dimensions, but this does not affect its functionality

Manual Wood Lathe: Specifications

Benchtop woodworking machines are compact devices that can perform many technical operations. The mass of most units of this type does not exceed 18 kg, which allows you to easily install them on a work surface and change the place of work, depending on need.

The power indicator of such equipment ranges from 350 to 500 watts. The most powerful devices are used in small-scale production. The mass of such machines can reach 90 kg.

As for the rotational speed, this parameter has a great influence on the quality of processing of wooden products. The minimum range of spindle speed is 400, and the maximum reaches 3500 rpm. This indicator can be adjusted, depending on two factors, namely: the type of wood and the necessary precision in a particular case.

The most high-quality mini-machines for wood are those produced by foreign manufacturers. The main advantage of imported devices is a higher power indicator, which expands the operational capabilities of the equipment.

Features of the Proma DSO-1000 wood bench lathe

This device is the most common today and is very popular among home masters. The company manufacturing these units is located in the Czech Republic.

Included with the machine
Included with the machine, often, is a set of cutters and fittings

Such equipment is multitasking and capable of performing many technological operations. The Proma DSO-1000 machine is used for processing products that consist not only of soft, but also of hard wood. The shape of the workpiece may be different:

  • cylindrical;
  • conical;
  • shaped surface.

The woodworking unit of this model is equipped with copying equipment, and also includes a set of necessary tools that greatly simplify the processing of wood. Fixation of the functional part in such a machine is carried out by means of a cartridge.

Power rating Proma DSO-1000 is 400 watts. The minimum spindle speed per minute is 850, and the maximum is 2510. The speed is adjustable, depending on the need. The length of the workpiece that a similar aggregate is capable of turning is 1 m (35 cm above the bed).

A similar model weighs 35 kg, which affects its dimensions, which are compact and versatile. Before purchasing, it is recommended that you familiarize yourself with the photo of the Proma DSO-1000 lathe, which can be easily found on the Internet.

And also the Proma DSO-1000 is distinguished by its affordable cost. The price of this unit is only 93$, which, with such functionality, is one of the best indicators on the modern turning equipment market.

Woodworking machine for the home workshop HolzStar DB450

This model of a woodworking machine for home use is mass-produced in China and has good quality characteristics. Another factor contributing to the popularity of the HolzStar DB450 mini-machine is its thoughtful design.

Note! The base of the HolzStar DB450 machine (bed) is made of cast iron material, which allows you to cope with unwanted vibration during operation. Due to this, the accuracy of processing wooden discs increases.

The main advantage of such a wood lathe for a home workshop is rightly considered a spindle speed. It is regulated depending on the characteristics of the workpiece material and varies from 500 to 3150 rpm. In turn, the power indicator of the device is 370 watts.

A standard apparatus of this type is capable of processing wood products up to 45 cm long. However, if necessary, this parameter can be increased. To do this, you will need to purchase a bed extension, which increases the processing length by 1 m. With this functionality, the mass of the device is only 38 kg. There is a HolzStar DB450 machine about 173$.

home workshop HolzStar DB450
Small lathes for home workshops make it possible to process wood products up to 45 cm long

JET JWL-1220 Wood Lathe Features

Another model that is popular among consumers is the JET JWL-1220. JET woodworking machines are manufactured in America. Such a machine differs from the above devices by a higher cost, which amounts to 266$. (with standard equipment).

However, such a cost is fully justified, since, from a functional point of view, the JET JWL-1220 machine is ahead of previous models. The power indicator of this unit is 750 watts, and its engine can operate in two modes and has 6 speeds. When the machine operates in the first mode, the spindle speed varies from 400 to 3300 rpm. And when you turn on the second mode, the speed increases to 500-3900 rpm.

The bed of this small lathe is made of gray cast iron. It differs from black in that it has increased strength to mechanical damage (shock). Some functional parts of JET JWL-1220 are also made of this material, therefore they are more resistant to wear.

And also it is worth saying that the JET JWL-1220 is equipped with a special locking lever, which allows to simplify the mounting of the device to the work surface. The bundle also includes rubber feet, which allow to exclude the movement of the unit during processing of wooden blanks and a bed extension 71 cm long. The weight of JET JWL-1220 is slightly higher than that of previous models and amounts to 45 kg.

US JET Woodworking Machines Reliable
US JET Woodworking Machines Reliable

Features of the mini-lathe Corvette 71

A similar model is produced in Russia by Enkor. It has a high level of functionality and relatively small dimensions. The Corvette 71 woodworking machine has a power of 370 watts, which is enough for simple technological operations.

Of the features of this model, it can be noted that it includes an asynchronous motor. And also it is worth mentioning that the spindle speed is controlled by changing the position of the belt on the friction wheels (pulleys).

Note! The complete set of the unit includes special keys that are necessary for adjusting the cartridge, as well as bolts for fixing to the working surface.

The rotation speed ranges from 760 to 3200 rpm. The length of a wooden workpiece that can be processed on such a machine is 42 cm. The mass of the lathe on the Corvette tree is 71-38 kg.

As for vibration, it is insignificant when working on the Corvette 71. This effect is achieved due to the material from which the bed is made (gray cast iron). The cost of such an apparatus is approximately 230$.

Home workshops
Home workshops are often equipped with simple training machines that can handle most standard turning operations.

School wood lathe STD-120

Woodworking units STD-120 are training models that are adapted for the processing of small wood products. The 120 series machine is most often used in schools or amateur workshops.

The main feature of this device from its predecessors is the ability to change the spindle speed by moving the belt on the friction wheels. The pulleys in such equipment have two streams, therefore the rotation speed is represented by two values: 1100 and 2150 rpm.

The unit with which the unit is controlled is push-button and is located on the front node. The basic equipment of the STD-120 machine takes into account the availability of interchangeable spindles, and the workplace is equipped with special safety shutters. Such a unit operates from an electrical network with a voltage of 380 V.

The power of the engine, integrated into such a unit, is 400 watts. The length of the workpiece that can be processed on STD-120 is 45 cm. The fixation of such a model of a turning device is carried out due to special fasteners – anchors. STD-120 is massive and weighs 100 kg, and its cost varies from 575 to 710$.

Most often, such machines are used for the manufacture of simple wooden products. On a wood lathe of this type, a standard set of technological operations can be performed.

Wood turning lathes

A unit for processing wooden workpieces of this type includes a photocopier. A copier is a device that allows you to process the product according to the template. The template, as a rule, is the finished part.

The process of working a copier for a wood lathe is quite simple. To do this, it is necessary to conduct them according to the appropriate template, observing its boundaries. Such a technological operation has some advantages. For example, the speed of the task is increased, and the use of a copier eliminates the possibility of damage to the workpiece.

The presence of a copier
The presence of a copier on the machine allows you to perform identical technological operations an infinite number of times

When working on equipment that does not have a copier, it is not always possible to complete the blank “by eye”. Even experienced craftsmen occasionally make certain mistakes. Therefore, the copying device can rightfully be considered a very important functional element, which reduces the percentage of marriage during the processing of wooden blanks.

Helpful information! The use of a wood lathe with a copier is most justified in the case of manufacturing large batches of identical parts from wood.

Consider the work of a wood copying machine in more detail:

  1. First, you need to install the copy device on special locking elements that are located in the upper part of the bed.
  2. Next, you can get to work. During it, the run-in roller will move along the outside of the screen.
  3. A roller fastened with a cutting element transfers the outline of the part, moving along the edge of the stencil, onto a tree.

Using a wood lathe with a copier allows you to perform technological operations an infinite number of times. This allows you to use it in small production environments where the speed and accuracy of manufacturing various parts (for example, legs of cabinet furniture) is very important.

Machine tools
Machine tools with a copier are simply necessary for small industries where the speed and accuracy of manufacturing various parts is very important

Types of cutters for wood lathe

Cutters are elements that are used to remove certain volumes of wood from a workpiece. All of them, from a structural point of view, are similar to each other and consist of two main elements: the cutting and fixing part (rectangular or square).

The cutting edge may be represented by one or more surfaces. This element differs in its shape and width, which are selected depending on the nature of the technological operation. The main criterion by which the incisors are classified is their location relative to the wooden disc. They can be in two positions:

  • radial;
  • tangential.

In the first case, the cutter is used to remove large volumes of wood. To do this, it is placed perpendicularly. In turn, the tangential position is used to remove a small amount of wood from the surface of the workpiece. This allows you to perform complex patterns on it.

And also chisels for wood lathes are classified by purpose. Today, there are many incisors that differ in their design and are used to perform various technological operations. Consider the most common of them:

Rayer . Product used for roughing blanks. A feature of this incisor is its blade, which resembles a semicircle in shape.

Meisel . This element is necessary for finishing. Its use allows you to give the wooden disc the final look. Meisel is a plate with a slanting blade, which is sharpened on both sides at the same angle.

Scraper . A cutter of this type is needed to level the surface of the blanks, which are inherent in a cylindrical shape.

Comb . It is used for threading the surface of a wooden workpiece.

Hook . Such a cutter is used to organize cavities inside blanks.

cutters for woodworking
When choosing cutters for woodworking, give priority to trusted manufacturers

Helpful information! There are other highly specialized incisors that are used to perform specific tasks of varying degrees of complexity. Some craftsmen make these functional products on their own, changing their shape as they wish.

You can buy cutters for wood lathes at markets, flea markets, in a specialized store or order online. Typically, these products are sold in sets.

Which wood lathe to buy: selection criteria

There are several main criteria that are recommended to pay attention to when choosing a unit for processing wooden products. The main one is the power indicator, which determines the purpose of the device. For example, for the processing of wooden products at home, desktop models that are notable for their low power are suitable. If you need a machine for frequent use, it is best to pay attention to devices with power from 500 to 1000 watts.

Another important criterion that you should focus on when choosing turning equipment is the size of future wood blanks. The lathe is selected according to strictly defined characteristics. In this case, two indicators are important: the center-to-center distance and the distance from the base (bed) to the installed workpiece.

And finally, the third parameter that determines the accuracy of processing of wooden discs is the spindle speed. Today you can find machines with a speed range from 400 to 3500 rpm. In this case, the following pattern can be traced: the faster the spindle rotates, the more accurately the processing of a wooden blank occurs.

In any case, the choice of this equipment is entirely up to you. A wide range allows you to easily select the necessary lathe. A video on this topic will also help you determine the choice of a unit for home use.

Wood lathes
Wood lathes are similar to metalworking units, but still have some differences

Features of working on a wood lathe

When working behind such a machine, it is necessary to remember some rules that are binding on everyone. For example, for processing it is necessary to use only dry wooden blanks. The humidity of such discs should not exceed 20%. And also remember that the product should not have knots.

If you decide to process a wooden disc, which differs in large dimensions, then experts advise you to perform all actions at low speeds. This will allow you to do the job efficiently.

Note! To increase the operational life of a woodworking home appliance, it must be taken into account that it needs periodic inspections and maintenance. The basic rule is that every 500 hours of use, lubricate the moving parts.

The simplicity of the design of woodworking turning units is a huge advantage. This is due to the fact that when a particular component fails, it can be replaced without problems on its own.

However, before interfering with the design of the device, it is recommended that you carefully study the repair instructions, which, as a rule, are included with the equipment. Also, experts advise before using such equipment to watch training videos on a wood lathe.


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