Mini Lathe Tooling
Quick-Change Tool Post?
Before you start selecting particular tools, you might want to make a decision on whether or not you want to invest in a quick-change tool post. As we describe the various tools, we will show your options for each operation with and without a quick-change tool post.
Quick-change tool posts are valuable in a production environment. You can change the cutting tool, knowing that you can return the tool to the exact same position relative to the work. This is important if you are turning out thousands of identical widgets. In most home shops, this is not important, as we are usually making one or two of a particular part.
But quick-change tool posts have one feature that is important to home shop machinists, and that is height adjustment. You can quickly adjust the cutting edge of the tool to the exact center height of the work. Without a quick-change tool post, you have to shim tools that are too low, and simply can't use tools that are too high.
Some of the tool posts that home shop machinists call quick-change tool posts don't have the "quick-change" feature at all, but simply provide an easy height adjustment.
On a mini lathe without a quick-change tool post you are restricted to using tools with a 5/16" or smaller shank. With a quick-change tool post you can use tools with shanks up to 3/8" (up to 1/2" in some cases). It's only 1/16" difference, but it opens up a lot of options.
Quick Change Tool Post Options