Richard’s Shop


Building a module for ML Fine Feed and a New Banjo for THreading

Richard 2004

Finefeed cartridge mount

Threading Banjo

Probably the most useful feed device would be a variablespeed motor type since the rate can be set as preferred, but it can be complex and is usually in the way. A cartridge type module, dedicated to providing a suitable feed rate for a nice finish, can be easily built. When threading is to be done, the cartridge is removed intact and a simple banjo with change gears installed can be installed. Going back to fine feeding again is done in a minute or so by just reinstalling the cartridge. Either choice is simple to install and adjust by an easy clamping on the leadscrew bearing extension.

 I previously built and used a quickchange gearbox for the ML but unless one is doing a lot of threading of different pitches, the QCGB is a  headache as it takes up space and makes the lathe much less portable.It is a nice exercise though if you need something to do.

For threading, the 80 tooth gears and one of the 20 tooth gears which were shipped with the ML are not needed.  These will be used in the finefeed cartridge. An additional  20 tooth gear like the others and a special 20 tooth gear will be required as well as a 57 tooth gear and two new bushings and keys to gang the compound sets. I used the 57 tooth gear from the threading set as I don’t envision ever needing it for any threads. I found it easier and cheaper to make the other parts . A minor change to the gear cover is  required.

An end view and front view show the finefeed mod in use. Use the lathe this way except when thread cutting is wanted remove the FF mod and install the banjo with the appropriate gears mounted.