Collet Chuck

Previously when milling in the lathe I’ve just put the milling cutter in the jaws of the 3 jaw chuck. This is not idea as it may slip and could damage the chuck jaws if it does so. A better solution would be a collet chuck which are designed to hold round items more securely as they are effectively a close fitting multijaw chuck.

Milling in the lathe

My little Saupe MD200 (Prazimat) lathe has a M14 x 1.0mm spindle with no taper and also has 3 M5 bolts arranged in a circle. Luckily that spindle size is the same as the Sieg C0 lathe, EMCOs Unimat 3, and Cowells 90ME lathes so there are plenty of components availble for it.

Collet chucks come in different series which determine the shape of the collets needed and the range of sizes of material that the collet can take. The ER16 (also known as ESX16) range can take 1mm to 10 mm in increments of 1mm which is ideal for this size of lathe.

ER16 Collet Chuck

I’ll be looking at this weekends model engineer exhibition to see if I can pickup a cheap ER16 collet chuck, £22.95 is the price to beat. The collets are sold individually or in sets of 10 for around £70. I’ll probably just get a couple with suitable sizes to match my end mills. I’ve seen individual ones for around a £5 each so it should not be too costly.

3 thoughts on “Collet Chuck

  1. Netduke says:

    I had a similar problem and just ended using 5c hex collet blocks that I could clamp with the lathe chuck.

  2. Can you buy those or did you make them?

    I’ve made a simple holder for holding threaded items in the lathe but I’ve never tried making my own collet before. It should not be too difficult though.

    A piece of hex bar would be a lot cheaper than a chuck!!

  3. Netduke says:

    I bought mine. I never tried to make one myself but it should be doable if you can cut tapers accurately. Since its basically just a hex bar turned into a collet chuck.
    Though I dont think they are usually used to hold threaded rod.

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