Troubles With Wood Floored Shop - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ralph_P View Post
    My old home shop had a wooden floor with a crawl space. I used several automobile screw jacks in the crawl space to steady the floor. Worked well.
    Ignorant and common Big Box "demolition" jack screw-tops and tubing cut to length might get you more support points at lower cost.

    Or not. Automotive market surely has some fair cheap mass-market price-points.

  2. #22
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    I have had a lathe on a wood floor and frankly I do not think that any amount of reinforcement short of pouring a solid concrete support to below the frost line will help. That floor is wood and it WILL move with every footstep you make. In my situation, while sitting on a stool in front of the lathe, I could lean over an inch or two while watching the level bubble and it would move. We are talking about tenths here.

    What I would do is remove all rubber. And remove that steel plate, it is doing nothing for you. Then design a mount using steel angle/channel/etc. with a three point suspension from the floor. If possible have your lathe sit on that mount with only four of it's feet and initially adjust them for equal pressure.

    The three point suspension will isolate the lathe from any twisting in the floor and the weight of the lathe will be supported in much the same manner by the frame when the floor does move. The forces on the four or six legs on the lathe will remain very close to the same as that happens so the lathe should see the same stresses at all times. This may not be perfect, but it should allow you to do a decent job of leveling and to make good parts.

    On that three point suspension, it would be a very good idea to add one or two additional feet that are adjusted to just a fraction of an inch above the floor to prevent the lathe from tipping over if something happens. From the appearance of the lathe in your photo, it may be possible to use the cabinet itself as that support by removing or shortening three of the six legs and adding a new one at the center of one end. Then perform the leveling by adding shims under the lathe bed casting, which usually has four feet.

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  4. #23
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    Exactly what is the situation?

    Renting or buying?

    What is under it?

    What is the loading capacity?

    Floors are rated in pounds per sq foot and if your walking on floor causes level to indicate movement then your small weight is the "straw" on the camel.

    How much does the machine weigh and what is the interface to the floor.

    You need to distribute the weight such that the floor loading is far less than rating.

    Sheets of 1.125 flooring that is span rated at 48 inches with 2x10 or 2x6 spaced 16 on center glued and screwed would spread the load very well while adding minimal weight.

    Proper design would allow openings at ends of the cavities to allow drawers to be added to use them for storage so very little wasted space.

    Your floor now is a safety hazard as walking causes movement so get the structure fixed.

    Do not run it until you get it supported.

    Forget about pads under feet, steel plate between feet and top of platform to make stable spot that will not let foot make divot.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

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    I need to get a photo of the outside of my shop for everyone to see. No such thing as basements and crawlspaces in this part of the world.

    The three-point mount makes sense. I will toss down a pallet and see what that does, will have a pair of 4x4 blocks eight feet apart hold up some flooring so my feet don't touch the floor in front of the machine. I have plenty of scrap, if this works I am golden.

    I will pull one of the plywood covers off the bottom of the shop to see what is under the floor. Do not really want to disturb all that insulation and vapor-shielding right now since it's cold (+19*F), but I'll know what is in front of me. I know it will never be as solid as on a reinforced slab, but I need to try.

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    The first shop I rented had an area with a plywood floor. Just marine plywood on gravel.

    Wherever I put a machine I just skilsawed a hole, dug down about 4" and poured a couple dozen bags of quickcrete in that spot.

    I left the concrete a bit low intentionally. In the end I had to concrete the entire area and just poured right over the top of those island slabs.

    It was a rented space.

  7. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nitromahn View Post
    I need to get a photo of the outside of my shop for everyone to see. No such thing as basements and crawlspaces in this part of the world.
    That actually makes the concrete option easier. Friends shop is a portable building, as he added machines he would cut floor open, frame a pad for machine, then pour full of concrete till level with floor. Before moving the big lathe in he had to tear up flooring, put lots of blocks under joists, then replace plywood, then add another layer of 3/4" plywood. I helped get it in the door, it was a beast, not sure if he ever got it across shop to where he wanted it. At that point the floor was already 1/4 concrete filled, ergo my suggestion of just filling it in the rest of the way.

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    Well hell....

    Okay. Dropped a couple of 4x4 blocks on the floor, set a 2x6x10' on them got up on that and stood there looking at my levels. Nothing. Bubbles didn't move. Kewl. THEN it came to me: tunnel vision in the clearest sense.
    This was my original plan back in April:
    lathe-mount.jpg
    It had been strongly suggested I pplace the machine as had been done on ships, using te 3-point mount. Okay. I was so completely focused on this, that when the machines came in and I had them in the shop, I decided to use a plate rather than set the machine UP on top of something for which I'd have to build a platform on which to stand to work. Wwwweeeelllll my idea was to straddle the floorjoists, and what I ended up doing was placing the plate so it runs with the floorjoists under it. Yep. Damn.
    Ha! So there we go. Shoulda stayed with original plan. I really don't want to spend more money, so I am going to turn the plate 90* under the headstock and use another piece under the tailstock. There shouldn't be any movement and I'm good.

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    Well, good luck with it. And remember the purpose for leveling a lathe is to have it turn proper cylinders. The actual level is not the end purpose AND it is not even the last step in setting a lathe up. For best accuracy, you tweak the shims under the feet AFTER doing the leveling while evaluating the performance while turning a cylinder. For this to work the mount for the lathe does not need to be absolutely level. It only needs to NOT CHANGE after you perform the final steps. Those final steps will become invalid if the lathe shifts on it's mounts. This is why ship mounted lathes can do high quality work.

    The three point suspension is not perfect as there can be small changes if the floor under it shifts. But, it serves to minimize the effects of those movements in the floor and is probably the best solution for situations like this.

    Your "bridge" support for the operator is a unique idea that I had not considered before. I think it could work well if the support points for that bridge are far enough from the lathe mounts. For the ultimate isolation, you could hang that bridge from the ceiling or extend it to two opposite walls.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EPAIII View Post
    Well, good luck with it. And remember the purpose for leveling a lathe is to have it turn proper cylinders. The actual level is not the end purpose AND it is not even the last step in setting a lathe up. For best accuracy, you tweak the shims under the feet AFTER doing the leveling while evaluating the performance while turning a cylinder. For this to work the mount for the lathe does not need to be absolutely level. It only needs to NOT CHANGE after you perform the final steps. Those final steps will become invalid if the lathe shifts on it's mounts. This is why ship mounted lathes can do high quality work.

    The three point suspension is not perfect as there can be small changes if the floor under it shifts. But, it serves to minimize the effects of those movements in the floor and is probably the best solution for situations like this.

    Your "bridge" support for the operator is a unique idea that I had not considered before. I think it could work well if the support points for that bridge are far enough from the lathe mounts. For the ultimate isolation, you could hang that bridge from the ceiling or extend it to two opposite walls.
    Absolutely. And thank you for taking the time to lend me your experience. I am most likely going to go back and do what had originally been suggested. I know it will never be the same as concrete, but I will do my best. This coming spring I will open up the bottom of the floor from underneath and bolt in some gluelam beams for additional rigidity and support. But I will be satisfied for now to move things around to see which gives me the most satisfaction before becoming ridiculous.

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  13. #30
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    I may expose myself as something of a hack here but...
    I have a heavy tool room manual lathe and a mill in my small wood framed shop.
    I have never bothered to put a level on either- both do good work.
    The lathe cuts as true with a fine finish.
    No complaints and not much bother to set up the machines- I got them in place, wired them up and put em to work..

    It might be said I just can’t follow instructions though.
    This tag on the lathe is too large to miss...

    c3282177-87f9-4206-b9b5-94eaaa6f4469.jpg

    Funny thing is it’s a old navy lathe- I like to tell folks it saw shipboard service but truth is it was probably bolted down to solid slab by men who knew their trade and carefully leveled.
    Last edited by Trboatworks; 11-14-2019 at 09:02 PM.

  14. #31
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    Well as already mentioned the precision level is only being used to make sure all sections of the machine are the same relative to each other. You could have the machine 3° out from level and stick a 3° shim under the level and set it up so it was "level" and it would still be fine. The important thing is that the machine is straight and true with no twist. From there you tweak a little as needed if necessary so it cuts straight.

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