How To Use A Metal Lathe

Are you worried about how you will set up and use a metal lathe?

Then this guide is for you.

Using a metal lathe if you are a beginner can be overwhelming.

The procedure entails familiarizing with the lathe features as well as clearing yourself from any potential hazard.

When I bought my first metal lathe for my home workshop, it was paramount for me to do some research on how to use my lathe effectively.

That is why in this guide, I will share my finding on how you can use a metal lathe in your home workshop successfully.

Lets get into the fun stuff of how to use a metal lathe.

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How to set and use a metal lathe

Nowadays, a metal lathe is designed for several different projects like cutting, drilling, and boring.

For you to use a lathe, you must start by attaching your stock into a chuck.

Then using the tailstock, fix the stock into place.

Ensure that your lathe has a tool post that will aid in holding your chosen tool.

Be that as it may, I have divided this part into two sections: setting up and using a metal lathe.

Setting up your metal lathe

This section will explain how you can turn your metal lathe with ease when using this tool.

First and foremost, it is good to know you can either turn your metal lathe manually or use the automatic feed if your lathe has this option.

In this blog post, I will enlighten you on how you can work with a manual lathe.

• Switch of the metal lathe

Before you begin setting up your lathe manually, ensure it is completely switched off.

If You don’t want any accident to happen to you or your team.


• Check lubrication

Your lathe should be well lubricated before you think of using it.

Poor lubrication makes your lathe component dry, thus damaging your unit.

After you have confirmed your lubrication is okay, gather all the essential components you need.

• Check out your cutting tool.

Ensure all the vital cutting tools are okay; otherwise, you will damage your tool, your piece of work, or even risk yourself.

Nonetheless, all tools should be tightly fitted.

For instance, your tool bit should have a 90° angle and should rest in the centre height of your lathe.

• Have the right gear

Before you move and turn your metal, ensure you are wearing the right safety gear correctly.

Using the metal lathe

I want to share some simple steps on how you can use your lathe safely.

First, you need to ensure that your lathe and the cutting tool (make sure it sharpened) are set up well in your pedestal bench.

Using a jaw chunk, ensure you mount your workpiece into the headstock.

In case your lathe is a modern mini-lathe, it is important to put on the chuck guard.

A chunk guard protects you from excess shaving, tool bits, and chips that may cause injury.

Be that as it may, select the direction of the rotation as you go on to turn your lathe.

Before you rotate your lathe, ensure you wear your safety gear.

Then slowly move your tool near the rotating workpiece and give a light pass.

Slide the carriage slowly, scrapping out any material you don’t need.

Use your specification as your guide when setting a cutting tool.

After you are done with your first light pass, ensure you turn off your switch.

Then, you can complete the process by parting, drilling, boring, or threading to have the unique and desired result.

Using A Metal Lathe 

Nowadays, it would be best to learn how to operate a metal lathe (see the 3 best benchtop metal lathe) in your home workshop.

This tool will help you make several objects for your household, especially if you are a DIY person.

That is why in this guide, I have covered how to set and use lathe in your workshop.

See also the 3 top lathe for bowl turning.