Sunday, 23 June 2013

How and why this Blog page got started.

I was prompted to write this in regards to well meaning people encouraging a gent who has suffered/recovering from a stroke. He is being pressured into buying a Vicmarc VL200 Sit Down Lathe and/or the club he is a member of. I spoke to the gent at a turning demonstration we were both at. He was a towering man of over 6ft using a walking frame to get about. He is well aware he is loosing strength in his legs and ability to get about but can still stand, he is already into turning. So I suggested something like my stool instead. Using the lathe he has already at home and the club lathes many of which I saw set up for tall people only. None seem to have adjustment for short people, they used whats called a duck board to raise them up.

My personal opinion  of the VL200 sit down lathe is "well done Vicmarc for having a go but sorry no first prize".
No I have not used one or am I likely to ever try, I have used a large normal Vicmarc and hated it.
Firstly I could never afford one and I would not expect any club or institution to buy one so I could. Not at a price of $4,000 to $6,000 and you must buy tooling on top (thats the same with any lathe).
Second The steel frame which supports the lathe will radiate cold during winter and this is detrimental to anyone able bodied or not.
Thirdly The location of the motor will not allow anyone even on the office chair shown above room for knees or to move into the lathe. You have to remember wheelchairs are made of metal.

The pluses are.
Its made/assembled here in Australia so parts and service etc should be first rate.
Its Variable speed with a 1.5kw motor so can handle some big stuff.
For a mini lathe it has a good swing  400mm meaning a plate of 400mm dia can be turned it has the same between centres.
A remote switch which can be moved to suit the user.
Height adjustable although it will take more than two people to do this and unless the wheelchair user has access to a lift he will not.

. "The stand is designed to be adjustable to suit many different applications and sizes.  The adjustable legs allow up to 150mm height adjustment (every 25mm) and the pivoting bed allows a tilt angle from 0 to 45 degrees.

The height range from the floor to the centre of the spindle while the lathe is tilted at 45 degrees is from 750mm to 900mm and when the lathe is tilted at 0 degrees the height range is from 950mm to 1100mm.  "It rakes to an angle of 45 degrees"
This set up is not one for someone who is independent and wishes to turn more than just spindles and platters from my view point with or without the stand. If the lathe was bought for a club that has more than one sit down user not even in a wheelchair and those users all were different stature the need to constantly adjust would have other members or staff of collages, schools etc constantly altering it.

I have done some editing above this morning 22nd June.

The lathe above to me needs a better stand set up one more suited to multi users for clubs, collages and schools.

1 comment:

  1. Well said Ray,

    It's amazing how products can be designed with apparently little involvement of the end user in the process