Turning Archive 2004
>You all might remember earlier in the week that I was asking for advice on different wheels for a mobile base that I built for our club's Jet 1642 Lathe.
Well along the way, I saw the Vega was offering one of their Machine movers (up to 28"x28" and 400 pounds) for a sale price of $25. I thought that I might be able to stretch it's capacity to work for the lathe.
I called Vega and talked to Randall McKinney about what I wanted to do. Randal advised against it, but only because this model requires that the user make their own cross members out of wood, and that wood would probably not handle the long spans, and then the sizes involved were not readily avilable to the consumer in steel tubing.
What he did recommend to me was their big Machine Mover #3 (MMB-3) that is normally $159, that was on sale for $109. I had him send me one. I figure if the club will not pay for it, I will either donate it to the club, or use it myself.
I got it yesterday, and put it together. Only 16 allen head set screws involved in the assembly. You put the cross members in place, and tighten the set screws. This is a nice piece of equipment. With this mobile base, when not being moved, the weight of the tool/lathe is fully on the ground. A set of non-rotating wheels is located at one end of the lathe. When you want to move the lathe, you hook a handle into a loop at the other end, pull back on the handle, and the tool is lifted onto the rotating (Steering) wheels on the end of the handle. Since I did not have access to a big lathe at the house, I tested the Machine Mover by puting it under my woodworking bench (probably about #300) and it moved it like a dream.
The thing I liked is that all you are putting between the lathe legs and the ground are a couple of pieces of steel sheet. The lathe remains approximately the same height, and is not bouncing around on rubber wheels. Unlike the mobile base that I built, it keeps the center of gravity as low as possible.
The capacity of the MMB-3 is 28"x71" and 800 plus pounds.
The Machine movers are available w/o the handles for a reduced price. Once you have one handle, you can use it for all other Machine Movers you might acquire.