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Thread: Good Lathe Lighting

  1. #1
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    Default Good Lathe Lighting

    I want to get some better lighting at the lathe

    I was thinking If they made a Led swing arm It would be Ideal....Is tough to see In the bowls at time
    Especially when our eyes aren't as good as they use to be

    What Is your lighting set up?
    Or what do you think would be a good lighting system for the lathe area?
    Dan From Rockwood ,Ont.

  2. #2
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    Bill

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    I have 4 4ft flourescent tubes (2 double tube 4' fixtures) over the bed of my lathe and a swing-arm lamp with a small floodlight mounted near the headstock. The lamp can be shone into the interior of workpieces.

    Ideally, there would be a guard over the lamp to keep shavings out. It is necessary to shake the shavings out to reduce the fire hazard.

    I can't imagine turning interior surfaces without the swing arm. It also is a good source of heat in a cool basement for speeding up finish drying.

    billh

  3. #3
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    Mount Hope Ont.
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    J.P.

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    I have a continuous row of fluorescents running the length of the shop, mounted to the ceiling, half way between the ridge and the front and back walls (one row each side of the ridge).
    That gives me plenty of overhead light and I have a swing arm light on the lathe for task lighting. I have a CFL bulb in the swing arm and I mostly use it to eliminate shadows and for sanding.
    Works for me
    J.P. Rap Mount Hope Ont.
    Carpe Ductum (Seize The Tape)


    "In this world, you must be oh so smart, or oh so pleasant." Well, for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant. Elwood P. Dowd

  4. #4
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    just what you thought :^')

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by Daner View Post
    I want to get some better lighting at the lathe

    I was thinking If they made a Led swing arm It would be Ideal....Is tough to see In the bowls at time
    Especially when our eyes aren't as good as they use to be

    What Is your lighting set up?
    Or what do you think would be a good lighting system for the lathe area?
    I haven't seen a perfect lighting setup yet Dan, generally 3 light sources of which at least one is adjustable is about as good as you can get.
    I have a 2 lamp fluorescent right above the lathe, hung low so to get the most light from them, a halogen spot on my left and a movable desk type arm mounted so I can get it to shine from all angles on the turning piece and inside as well, problem is either the light gets in my way or my head gets in the way/front of it.
    I have been looking for some fibre optic cable to use for the inside lighting, so I could clamp or position (magnet) it in such s way that it will light up the inside and not be in my way, and it would be pretty rugged rather than fragile like if using a bulb and electric wire problems etc.
    I did get my hands on a cable that was used to light a microscope, problem is that the cable is actually too short so I would need to keep the light-box with the light and the cooling fan very close to the turning, so I haven't actually used it, but it should work, in the meantime the previous is what has to do.

    O here's a link to a fibre optic for lighting supplier, just something to maybe think about using

    http://www.fiberopticproducts.com/Fiber_optic_items.htm

    There are a few turners that have gotten a dental light to try for a better lighting setup, though the previous problem of having either the light or oneself in the way is still there,
    Last edited by Leo Van Der Loo; 12-26-2009 at 10:52 PM.

    Have fun and take care
    Leo Van Der Loo

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    I also have the fluorescents 2-4' above the lathe
    And one of those small yellow work lamps
    But no swing arm....There are lots out there that use the Incandescent bulb...But then you get that yellow light from It.
    The Leds from what I have seen throw a real white light
    That's what I would like In a swing arm,But I cant seem to find one In our box stores

    I just found these....maybe good for a reg. swing arm lamp
    http://www.amazon.com/Crane-VFL-20-L...930059&sr=1-11
    Last edited by Daner; 12-27-2009 at 11:11 AM.
    Dan From Rockwood ,Ont.

  6. #6
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    just what you thought :^')

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by Daner View Post
    I also have the fluorescents 2-4' above the lathe
    And one of those small yellow work lamps
    But no swing arm....There are lots out there that use the Incandescent bulb...But then you get that yellow light from It.
    The Leds from what I have seen throw a real white light
    That's what I would like In a swing arm,But I cant seem to find one In our box stores

    I just found these....maybe good for a reg. swing arm lamp
    http://www.amazon.com/Crane-VFL-20-L...930059&sr=1-11
    Dan I'm quite sure that I saw some bundled led lamps at HD last time I was looking for some halogen spotlights that I use for in my swingarms, I find that the halogen gives a good color of light, and I think the led lamps were something like $25.--

    Have fun and take care
    Leo Van Der Loo

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Freelton, ON
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    721

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    I have lots of 4' fluorescent lights, but they are 11 feet up on my garage ceiling. I got the idea for this light mount when I was helping a widow disperse her husband's shop in Guelph last year. There is a steel plate on the wood bracket for the Delta magnetic base lamp. I use it when working close to the chuck or spindle work and want incident light from the front. I also have a piece of 2x4 with holes drilled for the swing arm lamp, and mounted parallel to the ways but lower, that I can move the swing arm to. I use 75 watt reflector bulbs in both fixtures, and even though the light is somewhat yellow, it is bright. Have been using this setup for about a year and a half and very happy with it. Saw the LED equivalent bulbs at Weeks Home Hardware last week. They were in the $20-25 range I think. Maybe when they are no longer an oddity and the price comes down, I'll try them. I have made up an LED lamp from a PA LED flashlight that can be attached to a hollowing tool. I am not sold on the colour of the LED light and am not looking forward to replacing our incandescent pot lights with them. I'll be stockpiling before that I think.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  8. #8
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    Atikokan, Rainy River District, Ontario.
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    just what you thought :^')

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    Dan I have my swing-arm lamp mounted on the shelve above /beside the lathe, as it was just the right place for it most times.

    I know you don't have that same setup, so the other thing I also have and use is a block of wood that sits anywhere on the lathe bed (usually on the end with me), I have drilled a hole and inserted a piece of pipe where the swing-lamp fits into, the block on my lathe sits on the prism so it cant slide away or twist, with your flat bed just two corners cut out the block can fit in between the ways.

    I have a bolt and flat steel strip under the ways with a wing-nut to tighten it down.

    I can point the light to shine right inside a bowl or closed form.

    I was just discussing the LED bulbs with my son here, (electrical engineer) and his opinion isn't very high of the LED lamps that are used now, the higher output drastically shortens the life for the heat that is generated also the efficiency isn't much better than a CFL, real white is apparently very hard to come by with LEDs, so taken all that, together with the price, I don't see myself using that very soon

    Have fun and take care
    Leo Van Der Loo

  9. #9
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    Rockwood
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    Talking Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    Hey Guys Thanks for the replies

    I went looking today for lights

    HD .....there swing arm thats on the web Is too small and too expensive.

    I went To Good ole Staples....I picked up a swing arm that has good reach. for 19.99 Lots In stock too
    Any way I was talking to the sales guy about the bulbs
    He pointed out these energy bulbs....The swirly ones
    I took home the 100 watt EE swirly bulbs
    And I'm really Impressed with the clear white lite that comes from these bulbs.
    When I'm near staples again I'm picking up at least 2 more of these swing arm lamps for 20 bucks...They work great.

    I feel like taking down all my lights 8' fluorescents that straddle across the shop and replacing them with these
    swirly Energy efficient bulbs

    When It warms up tomorrow I,m going to rig this swing arm lamp above the lathe
    Lighting Is so Important
    Dan From Rockwood ,Ont.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Lower mainland, BC
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    73

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    Has anyone tried using a headlamp for lighting inside bowls and such? I haven't tried it myself but it just occurred to me that it might help with the problem of the head getting in the way of whatever light we try to set up.

  11. #11
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    Murray

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    I have several yard sale lights and a recent yard sale purchase is a floor lamp with 2 twist any which way you want necks. I am going to put this one on the opposite side of the ways and it should shine in and about a bowl without getting me in the way.
    Murray

  12. #12
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    Northern Kentucky, USA
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    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    I went by the Thrift Store and found this lamp for $2.... Just the ticket for lightening up the place.

    \
    Bill "Hickory" Simpson

  13. #13
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    Rockwood
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    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    Yesterday When I was Turning a bowl With a good ole knot It It, It looked like I had a strobe light going on It.
    Now this was with those High efficiency lites that I thought were so good.
    My special gal had A halogen spot on the table this morning
    And asked me If this might work for you
    It was just what I needed....The spot light effect...It shines right were I need It, And Its In the swing arm lamp.

    The only thing I may up grade now Is the single 4 foot fluorescent above the lathe

    Cheers and Happy new years
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Dan From Rockwood ,Ont.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Good Lathe Lighting

    This is my light for my lathe. It is two 19" gooseneck sections but Sam Ash also has
    6" and 11". It will support the weight of this light at 19"+ but not at the full 38" (hence the Velcro strap).
    I attached a 100 watt halogen spotlight from Home Depot. The light fixture is "Taymac LH510B". (It is far enough away that the heat of a halogen is not a factor.)
    I mounted mine to the wall to provide light from the headstock, tailstock, or outboard.
    You can also mount it to a magnet to attach directly to your lathe. I didn’t want to have to move the light base or have it in the way…all I have to do is swivel it to a new position.
    Total cost should be about $30 for the goosenecks and light fixture.
    Below is the link to the web site where I purchased the goosenecks and mount.
    http://tinyurl.com/5srkrw
    If this link does not work for you, go to www.samash.com
    At the site go to "accessories" then "stands" then "mic mounts and accessories"
    The item numbers for two of the extensions are 6581 and 6576. The gooseneck mount is TM088. Two 19" extensions and the mount is about $20.00. The ends of the extensions are already fitted to mate with each other or the mount.
    The Taymac light has standard fittings for outdoor lighting. The swivel on the lampholder itself is also usable. The Taymac with its small size, light weight, and 100 watts works excellent for me. No problem seeing into the deepest bowl or vessel with the light four feet away.
    When used at an acute angle to the work, it highlights the smallest scratches or defects that are almost impossible to see with a light directly above.
    I use it to find scratches or light up the inside of a bowl or hollow form. For everything else the normal shop lights are enough.
    Mike
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before.

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