How to set zero on metal lathe?

Question by Rob: How to set zero on metal lathe?
I am a beginner with operating metal lathes. How do you set zero on your workpiece. Our instructor said if you barely touch the workpiece with the toolbit that will be one of your 0’s but i’m not sure for which axis it is for. I just need an clear explanation.


Best answer:

Answer by Damon
Not sure what type of lathe you are using, but there are two different measuring types, analog and electronic digital.

For the electronic digital types, the zero is set by pressing the “zero” button on the appropriate scale readout when the tool and work piece are in the proper position to do so.

For the analog types there is usually a ring “donut” of metal scale which can be dis-connected from the advance screw shaft using a thumbscrew, turning to the proper zero value and re-tightening the screw.

One must always be consistent in setting the zeros as the advance screw often has a bit of play in the thread. If one sets the zero while backing away from the work piece, the measurement will not be accurate if the cutting is done toward the work piece.

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