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Mountain Ash
4th Nov 2018, 10:00 AM
Hi all. I recently read an old article about adding storage containers (boxes) to the base of one's lathe stand in order to fill them with sand. This is supposed to add weight and dampen vibration. Has anyone ever tried this and did it work?

BobL
4th Nov 2018, 11:13 AM
Ideally you try to work out what is causing the vibration and attend to that as much as you can first. Whether than means pre-cutting workpieces into more of an regular shape or something else.

Once that is gone about as far as you can then adding weight certainly does help. Sand is one option, the other I have seen are concrete slabs, or even just boxes of gear, but perhaps a better one is to make the bench itself more rigid (ie add bracing) and heavier. I can definitely tell that vibration is reduced when my bench is loaded up with "Stuff'.

The location of the added weight can also make a difference to the degree of dampening. An extreme example of this was at a lab where I worked we were using extremely sensitive electrical noise measuring equipment on a specially made vibration reducing bench and people just walking past the nearby corridor would stuff up results. One day one of the techs place a lead brick (21kg) onto the bench and we noticed an reduction in the vibrations being measured, then we moved it around and added several others of different weights and got even more of an improvement.

Another trick with variable speed lathes is to change the speed slightly as this can move the rotational speed away from any natural bench vibrational resonance. This works on all sorts of applications like bench grinders and drill presses.

Mountain Ash
4th Nov 2018, 01:00 PM
Thanks Bob. Stand is made of SHS and this probably doesn't help. No variable speed just 4 pulleys. I actually haven't had particular trouble with vibrations, just seeing to improve where I can

NeilS
4th Nov 2018, 03:51 PM
I added lengths of railway line to the cabinet of my previous Woodfast and that stopped any vibration noise. My new Woodfast has cast iron legs. It hasn't budged, no matter what I throw on it.


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Mountain Ash
4th Nov 2018, 09:54 PM
Thanks Neil. I have only turned one bowl so far. Mostly spindle work at this stage but I like the look of some of those little finials.