Jewels have been used from time memorial for beautification and as precious gifts passed from one person to another. They are common among celebrities, famous people and even the ordinary folks as they bring a sense of class, elegance, luxury and happiness. They are manufactured from expensive durable materials such as diamond, gold, platinum, silver and bronze.
Due to their small size, complex shape and need to conserve the expensive materials, jewels must be made using special machines to produce high quality and good dimensional stability to ensure that customers are satisfied with them.
They must also have good aesthetic appeal and be durable. They must therefore be machined to perfect smoothness and flatness.
Precision jewel cutting using light duty lathes
Most rings are cast into cylindrical shapes and later machined using lathe and mill turns. They are also manufactured from rolled flat bars though this is not common for expensive products.
Due to the precision required, the production volumes are very low. In addition, most jewels are customized according to the client requirement which differ due to different physical dimensions e.g. size of fingers and neck.
Light duty lathe machines are used to fabricate most of these rings. The material is mounted on a chuck and various machining operations done. Turning of the internal surface is done to create an internal diameter that fits on the finger while outside diameter is turned to the specified size. Facing is done on the two opposite ends to smoothen them.
In addition, other processes such as drilling, tapping, chamfering and polishing and also done using this machine. A combination of these cutting operation results to the formation of the product. For example, chamfering gives the ring a wedge like edges while knurling results to a rough surface. All these operations are performed on light duty machines fitted with a small six jaw chuck to hold smaller work pieces without affecting the surface.
Contractors specializing in fabrication of many custom items have to make numerous rings that differ in design. This is achieved by using CNC machine. The jewels are automatically made by adjusting the tools and feed. In addition, these devices have the capacity of not only performing the turning, facing and other conventional lathe work but can also mill and perform cylindrical grinding.
The lathe allows a wide number of finishing operations to be done on the ring and jewels. In the lapping operation, the ring is rubbed continuously against another surface with an abrasive liquid between them. This removes a very tiny layer and smoothen the ring.
Features of light duty lathe machine
They are characterized by minute tool post and chuck which are designed to handle tiny work pieces. Their bed is machined to perfect straightness. They are also fitted with a plate chuck which assists in holding complex shaped work pieces. They have a smaller bed, tailstock, head stock and carriage. These machines also have low power consumption and are very efficient. They are compact, durable and have excellent functionality.
Features of Lather which make us Wonder
A lathe apparatus is a workshop friendly device with which a range of machining processes can be done such as cutting, drilling, turning, deformation, etc This device can be purchase based on the core industrial requirements and in accordance with the specific features it is embedded with, such as,
- A lathe apparatus can be applied on a wide range of material surfaces such as metal, glass, wood, plastic, etc
- A variety of functions can be handled with this equipment such as, screwing threads, tapering, drilling holes, knurling surfaces, crank shafts, etc
- This device is provisioned with rotating operation whereby the work piece can be rotated to proceed with a number of cutting and shaping actions.
- There are different designs of equipment provided by manufacturers of today where the consumer will feel the ease of selecting a particular design deciding over the rotating speed of the machine and the performance required for the respective industry.
Thus, the above flexible features in device make us wonder about its multiple functional capacities and the trend in designing innovative designs.
What are the Risks and Challenges Faced in Glass Shaping Work?
Lathe for glass shaping work is the most complicated jobs of all. Such fragile materials have to be shaped with precise handling as even minor variation in handling might result in breakage of the material, hence, choosing a lathe for glass works should also mean that safety aspects are also justified because there are possible risk factors in glass work lathe such as,
- With glass the risk of man held glass work piece is very less as it is equipped with two head stocks, one for holding and another for turning the work piece. However, handling the working tools for heating the material needs to be done with proper safety precautions and attention.
- Optical surface creation over a glass material is a challenging job for which watchfulness is completely required. Even minor mistakes may result in great loss. Some CNC lathe for glass cutting will be equipped with diamond tipped tool for creating optical material from glass hence, they will stay a suitable option for such works.
- Lenses of complex varieties are created with this method, however careful attention toward each machining activity is recommended while handling as well as while delivering the product.
- Wearing safety goggles, hand gloves will stay one of the basic options to avoid risks.
How does a Lathe Transforms Heavy Duty and Delicate Materials into Employable one?
Lathe apparatus are designed in different shapes pertaining to the work material range, weight and quantity. However, implementing an accurate lathe component in harmony with industrial needs will fetch good results. For example,
- A basic light duty lathe machine will stay a suitable option to handle light weight materials.
- Heavy duty materials like metal blocks, rods or large wood logs can be managed only with specific design such as heavy duty apparatus or a medium duty apparatus.
- A light duty is also the best kit to handle light materials with accuracy of machining. Thus transforms a heavy duty material to an employable one.
- An all geared is a wonderful invention as it can be applied for wide functions in different industries such as mining, paper industries, power plants, etc.
- A roll turning gadget is applied to make rolling mills, drying cylinders for paper industries, etc
- A universal all geared can be preferred for noise free machining works.
- Extra heavy duty is applied for heavy duty materials which needs tough performance for precise machining.
Buying a lathe machine is sure to fetch several benefits apart from the specific king of machining job required. Hence, while investing on a machine it is better to compare the specifications of the apparatus in accordance with the present work, negotiation of risk factors, and for future works also.
Nowadays, the tool room work and workshop machine activities; are done by repairers or through suitable lathe tools. A lathe is a tool utilized to perform various functions like turning, cutting, drilling, grooving, knurling, parting, threading etc. They are used to produce accurate products made from metal, plastic, wood etc. The basic lathe machine operations are as follows:-
Turning is an essential and important lathe operation. It is used to create circular objects and for reducing the diameter of the work. Taper turning refers to the process where the tool narrowly cuts the job at a specific angle. Knurling is done using a knurling tool; it has two slashed lined wheels that are pressed against the rotating work piece to produce a knurled object.
The drilling operation uses a drilling tool which is held in the tail stock and fed into the work by using a handle on tailstock. Threading is a precise operation, where the tool is fed into the job at a constant speed. This is done by attaching a carriage assembly with lead screws that are connected to the driving mechanism through gear trains. Two types of threading are external and internal threading.
Grooving is done before external threading by feeding the grooving tool perpendicular to the rotating work piece. Parting is done for cutting a work into smaller parts. Chamfering refers to slitting or cutting the edges of the object.
The major parts of a lathe machine are bed, headstock, saddle, tailstock, top slide; apron, cross slide, lead screw, countershaft, tool rest, chuck and gears. The bed is the base of a lathe, the chuck holds and spins the work piece; whereas the apron grips the gears, and the headstock allows the spindle to rotate at variable speeds. The tailstock holds the end of the work; and the carriage houses the cross slide, top slide and saddle.
Many types of lathes are available including the wood lathe. Here the cutting tool is operated manually by skilled workers to precisely form smooth curves and complex shapes on the work piece. The spindle is normally driven by a belt connected to the motor, and the speed can be varied manually. Lathe tools are held manually against the work, with the help of an adjustable tool rest; that is clamped to the base at a suitable position.
Engine lathes are machines with a longitudinal base, where the headstock and tailstock are mounted. It has an advanced spindle drive that runs at variable speeds; the selectable gears help to operate the machine at higher speeds. The lathe cutting tools are moved against the work using hand wheels; or automatically using a lead screw that is power driven by gears in the headstock. The carriage moves back and forth on the bed for longitudinal turning. The cross slide and compound rest are mounted above the carriage to enable cross and angular cutting.
Finally during any lathe machining operation, always take necessary precautions; even if you are an expert, or are handling an important process.
The lathe is indeed a great invention and a very helpful machine, used for numerous purposes since the ancient times. The earliest type of lathe was the potter’s wheel, which is being utilized to shape clay pots and earthen objects even today. The lathe machine is basically a machine tool that revolves the work piece on its axis to carry out a variety of operations that includes cutting, shaping, turning, drilling, sanding, bending etc.
Types of Lathe Machines
An extensive range of lathe machines are now available in the market at affordable rates. Each type of lathe machine has remarkable features and specific engineering application, including shaping various kinds of materials. They can be used in several industrial functions such as wood shaping, metal bending, glass sanding, stone cutting, plastic drilling, repairing machine parts etc.
These lathes have truly made a major difference in the shaping industry due to its highly beneficial features and outstanding performance. Some of the most useful lathe machines designed and manufactured nowadays are as follows:
First is the v-belt drive lathe machine that includes light duty lathe machine used for shaping small size items and other bending tasks; the medium duty lathe machine has enhanced functionality to cast most accurate shapes; heavy duty lathe machines are robust equipments built for large scale metal working and wood working operations; extra heavy duty lathe machine have tight tolerances and are utilized to shape very hard substances.
Next is the roll turning lathe machine which is another sturdy machine tool, dedicated for finishing purposes and to produce cylindrical rolls in rolling mills. Further comes the all geared lathe machine that includes light duty all geared lathe machine, meant for relatively light activities; medium duty all geared lathe machine for moderate functionality; heavy duty all geared lathe machine for higher capacity lathe machining work; and extra heavy duty all geared lathe machine for applications in heavy industries.
Recently highly precise, imported all geared lathe machines are widely used. They easily provide smooth machining on solid sheet metals; and include light duty imported lathe machine and medium duty imported lathe machine. These uniquely designed lathes are very efficient; and perform the lathe functions with zero defects.
The latest models of lathe machines comprise of the heavy duty high speed lathe. They are versatile and function at a greater speed, and used for bulk manufacturing and solid machining work on sheet metals. Further is the extra heavy duty lathe with pedestal type bed and extra heavy duty lathe with planer type bed that have longer working life.
Even imported CNC lathe machines, manufactured as per international standards are available these days. Another advanced technology based lathes are flat bed CNC lathe, heavy duty flat bed CNC lathe and slant bed CNC lathe; that are reputed for accurate dimension and high tensile strength. All these lathe machines provide a significant return on investment; and are extensively used in tool rooms, power plants, ship building, paper mills, repairing shops, steel rolling mills, workshops, mining, oil, textile industries etc.