17.4.2 Lathe Safety

Follow these safety guidelines when working with wood lathes:

  1. Examine wood for knots and other defects before placing it in the lathe.
  2. Ensure that glued materials are set before placing them in the lathe.
  3. Before turning the lathe on, slowly turn rough materials a few times to ensure they will clear the tool rest.
  4. Keep hands off the chuck rim when the lathe is moving.
  5. Hold all wood cutting tools firmly with two hands.
  6. Start all jobs at the lowest speed. Ensure that materials are in a cylindrical form before advancing to higher speeds. Never turn large diameter materials at a high speed.
  7. Firmly screw faceplate work to the faceplate. Take care to avoid cutting too deep and hitting the screws.
  8. Remove the "T" rest when sanding or polishing.

Follow these safety guidelines when working with metal lathes:

  1. Make sure that all gear and belt guards are in place.
  2. Never leave a chuck wrench in a chuck.
  3. Keep your hands off chuck rims when a lathe is in operation.
  4. Do not attempt to screw the chuck onto the lathe spindle with the power on, as it may get cross-threaded and cause injury. Stop the machine, place a board under the chuck, and then screw on by hand.
  5. Steady rests should be properly adjusted to conform with the material being worked on.
  6. When filing work in a lathe, always face the head stock and chuck.
  7. See that tailstock, toolholder, and work are properly clamped before turning on power.
  8. Never attempt to adjust a tool while the lathe is running.
  9. Never apply a wrench to revolving work or parts.
  10. Always use a brush to remove chips; never your hands.
  11. When possible, use pipe sleeves to cover work protruding from the end of the lathe.
  12. Before removing your work from the lathe, remove the tool bit.

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