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Thread: Mini Lathe System Cooling

  1. #1
    Supporting Member jjr2001's Avatar
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    jjr2001's Tools

    Mini Lathe System Cooling

    The mini lathe motor was getting quite hot and the control board for the lathe did not have any cooling. Not a good way to work in Arizona in the summer. I installed a small 120 vac fan on the motor cover and had it setup to exhaust from the control box area of the mini lathe. There are air passage ways from the control box area to the motor area so I was assured of positive air flow. The best place for inlet holes was on the cover on the left end of the lathe. Should not pickup chips from here so I used a step drill (unibit) to make some 5/8" holes in the plastic cover.
    The motor area is much cooler now and I no longer smell the pc board getting hot. This fan was just wired across the AC input. I use an external switch to turn power on/off to the lathe so the fan will run anytime I have the lathe power strip on. This will help cool things down even when the lathe is not rotating. The power strip is switched off when I am done with the lathe for the day.

    Cheers, JR
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Mini Lathe System Cooling-latheend.jpg   Mini Lathe System Cooling-lathemotorview.jpg  

  2. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to jjr2001 For This Useful Post:

    Paul Jones (09-06-2016), PJs (09-07-2016)

  3. #2
    Supporting Member Paul Jones's Avatar
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    Paul Jones's Tools
    Great solution. The replacement printed circuit boards for the mini lathe speed controllers are getting very expensive. Good practice to pull the plug or use some way to switch the power off because in many cases the electronics are still in a stand-by mode and still "on". However, keep the DRO on a separate power cord and not unplugged to keep your parameters in memory. I wish these had flash EPROMs.

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    PJs (09-07-2016)

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    PJs
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    PJs's Tools
    Great Idea JR. Hadn't thought of it but when doing long jobs on hard stock, I know mine gets hot too because the torque seem to fade...so I just shut if off for awhile. I'm with Paul, the boards have gone up considerably...this will be a good fix. Although a little 2" box fan in the electronics housing would work too...or maybe a laptop CPU or Video card fan would work better, lower profile good CFM.

    Thanks for the Idea!! ~PJ
    ‘‘Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.’’
    Mark Twain

  6. #4
    Supporting Member jjr2001's Avatar
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    jjr2001's Tools
    Thanks guys,

    $234 for the mini mill pcb! Wow, that is really over the top. Now I am really glad I added the fans. Mine are all powered down unless I am in the shop so I am good to go there. I could buy some serious accessories for 200 bucks...

    Cheers, JR

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    PJs (09-07-2016)

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    PJs
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    PJs's Tools
    Yup, a face plate, 4 jaw and maybe a nice boring bar, lots of goodies on the list! @¿@ Got to protect the investment! Again, Great Idea!

    ~PJ
    ‘‘Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.’’
    Mark Twain

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    Thanks jjr2001! We've added your Mini Lathe Cooler to our Lathe Accessories category,
    as well as to your builder page: jjr2001's Homemade Tools. Your receipt:





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