Re: Precision level needed or not?

Nick Jonkman

I never use a level. I use two straight bars of steel across the bed, one on each end, the longer the better and of course high enough to see over the carriage. Sight over these from the tail stock end and you will immediately see any twist in the bed no mater what angle the lathe is sitting at. Get a couple of pieces of cold rolled bar stock or precision ground bars about 1/2" thick and at least one foot long or longer and wide enough to site over the carriage and you have every thing you need to set up your lathe.

Nick Jonkman

On 19-06-11 7:45 PM, Steven H via Groups.Io wrote:
The idea behind using a precision level when leveling a lathe bed in my understanding is to check for and, if necessary, remove any twist in the bed. So the level is placed across the bed at the headstock and tailstock ends if the bed. You would want the bubble to be in the same position in the level vial so don’t rotate the level end for end when moving it from headstock end to tailstock end of the bed- that would theoretically mean that the bed is not twisted. It is not that important that the lathe bed be absolutely level along its length - close is good enough. In fact, trying to level crossways and lengthwise is an exercise in futility, ask me how I know.

After leveling the bed, one can take cuts on a piece to see if the lathe is cutting a cylinder, and then decide if further adjustment is necessary.

Steve Haskell

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