New Acra 1743ACH Lathe
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  1. #1
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    Default New Acra 1743ACH Lathe

    The machine in California before it could escape the state.


    My new machine arrived yesterday. Off loading was mostly uneventful. They loaded it right on the front of the trailer so the truck driver had to jackknife the truck so I could get it off.


    Was a little creepy pulling it off the end of the trailer.

    Even though it came through some rainstorms on the trip across the country, it was well packed and heavily oiled to keep corrosion at bay.


    It off loaded pretty easily and once I got it in the shop door the rain started. Set the pallet down and rotated it with some car dollies so it was pointed the right direction when moving into place. Once I got it into place sorta, I then lifted it with the lift bars and chains so I could remove the pallet. Once that was done I could move it over the all thread I epoxied into the floor.

    My assistant showed up to supervise the epoxy operations. HAHA


    More pics tomorrow as I finish installing and putting it into operation.

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    Here are some of the pages from the quality testing documents:

    This one is fascinating. Look at how the difference in tail stock to spindle heights change after 40 minutes of running. Pretty neat.






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    are you going to check it? this kind of precision would make me suspicious.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dian View Post
    are you going to check it? this kind of precision would make me suspicious.
    I once installed a Russian " Stanko " milling machine. It was brand new and it came with an alignment test file all filled in to well within the standard required.

    I got called back a day or so after the installation. The operator said " The table is tapered from end to end Tyrone ! " I said " It can't be, it's brand new ". He said he'd done the first job on the mill and the job was coming come out tapered. He handed me a 4" to 5" O/S micro and said " Here try it for yourself, measure the table ".

    He was right, the table was about 0.010" to 0.012" bigger at one end. How that had occurred, who knows ?

    It had to come off right away and go out for grinding.

    Regards Tyrone.

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    I'm going to do my best to measure the claims made in the book. I am going to let it sit for a few days, do my initial leveling and squaring, then let it sit another month or two and see if it shifts around more. By then it should have settled into the floor properly. My floor is 4in thick so there is a concern about flex there. I suspect there is some sort of surface plate at the factory that each machine gets set on to test all of these parameters, so there is possibly some degree of accuracy held there, not necessarily achievable in my shop here in North Alabama.

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    More setup today. Got the wiring done, powered it up, started leveling and cleaning off the Chinesemoline off the surfaces. You know how hard it is to clean cosmoline off a lead screw? It sucks. Hence all the funny close up pics.

    Yep, heat treated and hardened ways. I haven't take a file to the corner to see how hard though.



    Started leveling and settling the machine in place:




    I sunk the all-thread into the floor and epoxied it into place with some two part epoxy from Mcmaster. Stinks but seems to be holding OK with a bit of twist testing.



    Some features I noticed today while working around it:

    Dual dials no need to switch back and forth on the DRO, but also I can quickly take a MM off without calculating an equivalent.


    The markings on the tail stock appear deep and well done. My old machine they were pretty much completely gone so it was mandatory to attach an indicator. This will simplify that somewhat.


    You can see the world's most expensive oil can in the background.

    Pretty sure its made by Kinwa which seems to use the Chin Hung name. The serial number is cast into the end of the machine. That is kinda odd, or they all have the same serial number, who knows.


    YouTube
    Many of the controls seem quite familiar.

    I'll Make a video over the weekend. I'm being a nerd as this is my first new machine.

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    More clean up and hook up. Powered it up and she is VERY Smooth. Every RPM from lowest to 2000rpm, its vibration free. Chuck or no chuck I feel no difference in vibration levels. My old machine had a bit of harshness at higher RPM, but this one is just a smooth gear sound.

    While cleaning the lead screw, I noticed the compound is hardened and the bottom of the compound cross slide is scraped and flaked. Kinda cool.





    Already thinking about some extra guards for the lead screw and a hand guard for carriage advance hand wheel. Also starting to think about where everything will go tool wise. On my old machine I built a shelf above the back spash. Seemed to work well.




    Anyone here here using a multi level rolling cart for holding their tooling, extra chuck, faceplate, etc? I'm kinda debating something like that I can just roll to the side with a collet rack, shelf for the 4 jaw chuck, shelf for all of the tool holders, etc.

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    Its the same brand and kind of machine that I was trained on. If my experience is any indication, I think you'll be extremely satisfied with it. Maybe even a little moist. Will wait for updates as it settles in. I think a rolling service cart is a good idea. I actually believe the precision specs, having used these in the past. But we will see what happens here.

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    This is a great thread. I am looking for a similar lathe. I do not have any experience with the ACRA. I was planning on getting a Sharp 1660LV lathe. I looked a one in operation and it was a beautiful lathe. Kind of fell in love with it right away. The ACRA is a little more economical. Does the manufacturer say it needs to be bolted to the floor? I have radiant heat and I get nervous drilling anywhere into my floor.

    Thanks,
    Thom J

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett W View Post
    Anyone here here using a multi level rolling cart for holding their tooling, extra chuck, faceplate, etc? I'm kinda debating something like that I can just roll to the side with a collet rack, shelf for the 4 jaw chuck, shelf for all of the tool holders, etc.
    I don't have a photo of it all loaded up, but I made a cart for chucks, faceplates and QCTP blocks. Collets, spare inserts and toolholders live in other racks or cabinets.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails sfriedberg_chuck_cart_2.jpg   sfriedberg_chuck_cart_1.jpg  

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    All manufactures seem to imply they should be bolted down. However, there are plenty of machines the world over that are not bolted down. With the radiant heat I would also be hesitant to put anchors into the floor unless you had a very careful map of where to drill. Can you map the floor tubes?

    The Sharp looks like a nice machine. The D1-8 Spindle allows for a 3in Bore. Thats nice. Everything else looks really similar to the ACRA. That machine is a variable frequency drive machine. When talking to four different manufactures, they all said stay away from the VFD machines. In the long run the straight gear drive would be more reliable. The VFD can do constant surface speed through the Newall DRO though. Kinda cool feature. Given the choice, I might go with the 1860 over the 1660. You get most of the same features and its 1000lbs heavier. The bed is the same width on all of those machines and its a bit narrower than the ACRA/Chin Hung 1743ACH. They were 12ish.

    Sharp Industries 12 Speeds & Variable Speed Precision Lathes, 16" and 18" - Penn Tool Co., Inc

    The price difference in the 16 and the 18in swing is in the noise. The accessories is what gets you on the price.

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    It looks like there is a lip seal around the tailstock ram and way wipers on the work side of the compound rest. If they're decent, they're a nice touch and indicate somebody tried hard and didn't succumb to "value engineering."

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    There is indeed very nice wipers on the both ends of the tailstock. There is a pretty nice seal around the tail stock as well. I can oil it and not have an oily mess all over the tail stock. It is a bit annoying to get oil under the wipers for the tail stock


    I really think this company takes some pride in their product. I mean they gave me a piece of carpet. A piece of carpet for my lathe. How awesome is that?




    Slow rolling some Titanium scrap.


    Knocking down a weld:


    Machine is so solid, parting on some hex stock was so uneventful. Quite remarkable compared to my old machine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sfriedberg View Post
    I don't have a photo of it all loaded up, but I made a cart for chucks, faceplates and QCTP blocks. Collets, spare inserts and toolholders live in other racks or cabinets.
    That is sweet. What are the front bars and fingers? Some sort of industrial racking? I'm gonna
    take some ideas from that for sure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett W View Post
    All manufactures seem to imply they should be bolted down. However, there are plenty of machines the world over that are not bolted down. With the radiant heat I would also be hesitant to put anchors into the floor unless you had a very careful map of where to drill. Can you map the floor tubes?

    The Sharp looks like a nice machine. The D1-8 Spindle allows for a 3in Bore. Thats nice. Everything else looks really similar to the ACRA. That machine is a variable frequency drive machine. When talking to four different manufactures, they all said stay away from the VFD machines. In the long run the straight gear drive would be more reliable. The VFD can do constant surface speed through the Newall DRO though. Kinda cool feature. Given the choice, I might go with the 1860 over the 1660. You get most of the same features and its 1000lbs heavier. The bed is the same width on all of those machines and its a bit narrower than the ACRA/Chin Hung 1743ACH. They were 12ish.

    Sharp Industries 12 Speeds & Variable Speed Precision Lathes, 16" and 18" - Penn Tool Co., Inc

    The price difference in the 16 and the 18in swing is in the noise. The accessories is what gets you on the price.
    I could get someone with a thermo imaging camera to map the tubes but I probably wouldn't go that far. None of my machines are bolted down. I also think the floor moves a little when heated in the winter.

    Yes, the D-8 spindle is a plus. I have a bunch of D-8 tooling now, so makes sense for me. And I love the thought of a 3 1/4" spindle bore.

    I was unaware of that I could tie in a Newall readout to the VFD. Makes sense. I really like the Newall digital. Yes, the drive could get fried at some point but they are still reliable. All of my machines have VFD's on them. I had only one go bad.

    Thanks much,
    Thom J

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    I ALMOST bought the 1760 TE from ACRA because of that bigger spindle bore, but in the end decided the ACH was a better machine for me. I put a 2.125in strut tube into the spindle today and that was REALLY nice compared to my old machine.

    I could have sworn the DP700 did CSS, but the website doesn't indicate it does. The Acurite does.
    DRO 203 - Most Popular Digital Readout System | ACU-RITE

    It says CSS is an option.

    The DP700 can store up to 50 tools so I hope I can get things organized properly to have all of my offsets stored and I can get some more efficiency like the CNC guys can.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett W View Post
    What are the front bars and fingers? Some sort of industrial racking?
    The perforated leaning bars are an 80/20 brand extrusion, part 9701. The yellow painted fingers I welded up from 1/8 x 1 HRS. (Or was it 1/8 x 3/4? Not at the shop to check.) They have four sides (bottom and front face are open) and there's a hole drilled in the rear face for a 5/16" shoulder bolt, which fits neatly through the pre-drilled holes in the 9701 extrusion.

    I recommend you weld the upper set of brackets for the 9701, temporarily mount the 9701 to both sets of brackets, then weld the lower brackets in place. This makes the center-to-center hole distance between the upper and lower brackets exactly right without fussy fixturing and measurement.

    The trays for QCTP holders were made from 1/2 angle iron with about a 20 gauge panel and then lined with sheet cork.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett W View Post
    I ALMOST bought the 1760 TE from ACRA because of that bigger spindle bore, but in the end decided the ACH was a better machine for me. I put a 2.125in strut tube into the spindle today and that was REALLY nice compared to my old machine.

    I could have sworn the DP700 did CSS, but the website doesn't indicate it does. The Acurite does.
    DRO 203 - Most Popular Digital Readout System | ACU-RITE

    It says CSS is an option.

    The DP700 can store up to 50 tools so I hope I can get things organized properly to have all of my offsets stored and I can get some more efficiency like the CNC guys can.
    A 2" spindle bore would work for me but I do make a lot of 3" dia. rollers so bigger bore is better.

    I have used the newall for years so I prefer it. It has 99 sub datums so multiple tools and set ups are doable. However price is alwasys important to me. Every penny I save is a penny that goes into my pocket (minus the multiple governments cut).

    I had my mind made up on the sharp lathe but your other post made me look at the Acra. Looks like a nice lathe. I have looked at used equipment and gave up. Everything seems to be worn out. I want something really nice. Is only me in the shop (sometimes son). I like to keep all my tools nice. I don't trust anyone running my equipment. For me it is a lot of money so I want to make my choice wisely.

    Thom J

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    If you can get past your state border without getting shot and want some warmer weather, you can ride down to Huntsville and take my machine for a spin. I've been running it almost all day today. Its so nice. Boring is a non event, where in the past it was a chatter filled experiment in torture. Even cut some Titanium this morning and that was a breeze.


    Thanks for the heads up, I'll get to working on a cart like yours. Be nice to free up my table space and get the chucks off the floor dolly.

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    To be honest the best part of the "after 40 minute" spec was the thought that they actually ran that actual machine for 40 minutes to get it. Can't imagine that is the case but if it is imagine how much little stuff they must be able to catch and fix doing that. I like that.

    Also, did that tag say 2 phase? I mean, I guess it's not wrong on the phase but never see anyone call two legs of single phase 2 phase.


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