Lathe Machines – Safety Precautions


Lathe Machines are a rather exceptional tool for cutting near any material, such as sheet metal and wood. This machine in particular is extremely sharp, which can lead to dangerous situations if the operator is unaware of certain issues. Consumer Product Safety Commission says that the most common injuries pertaining to Lathe Machines are broken fingers, cuts to the hands and hot shrapnel hitting the body or eyes. Wearing proper clothing and practicing safe cutting techniques ensures that you will be able to use this device without problems.



Pre-Use Education

Never use an advanced machine such as the Lathe without knowledge of how to use it, most accidents occur to those who are unaware how to operate a lathe. Read the user manual before use, especially all safety procedures. Walk around the Lathe Machine, look for any damaged, loose, or missing parts along with making sure all the guards and shields are in order. If your lathe is dull or you see any issues, do not use it. During operation, protective eyewear is critical, you definitely do not want a piece of hot shrapnel flying out of the lathe and blinding you, so always wear goggles with side shields as good measure.


Clothing Guidelines

Lathe Machines can easily catch long sleeves and loose clothing. It is best to wear short sleeves, or cuffed long sleeve shirts so nothing is free hanging off your body for the lathe machine to snatch. Cover your legs with long pants and sturdy work boots to stop hot metal from burning you. Especially remove all jewelry and watches because that is also one thing that can get caught in the lathe. Tying back long hair is a good precaution as well.




Before anything should be done on the Lathe machine, you need to make sure that the material being cut is clamped down tightly and centered to the lathes chuck. Adjust the cutting tool and rest so that they are just above the center of the work piece. Remove the chuck key from the chuck before you turn on the power to start cutting. When you turn on the lathe begin on a low rotational setting and gradually work your way up as necessary. Following your manufacturer’s recommendations for rotation speed, feed and depth of cut for the material you are working on. Keep all limbs and extruding clothing away from all moving parts or cutting tools. Avoid reaching across the chuck when you are burnishing or filing the metal. Never use your hand to stop a moving chuck, instead guide the cutting tool away from the metal and turn off the machine.


Cleanliness Is Happiness

Working in a cluttered and messy place is never ideal for your job. Follow up after every use of the lathe machine and thoroughly clean your work area, sweep the work area with a brush or a broom. Do not touch the metal pieces with your hands as they may still be hot and sharp.

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One Response to Lathe Machines – Safety Precautions

  1. Logan Murphy says:

    I find the type of clothing you wear while using manual machining is a crucial safety tip. My father-in-law works in a shop with a lot of machinery, including a lathe machine. He makes sure his employees all are wearing the correct type of clothing before starting work each day. He understands how important it is. Thank you for your clothing guidelines. I find them really important.

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