Mini Lathe Troubleshooting

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Troubleshooting (10/06/07)

This page is long overdue. Several times a month, I receive emails inquiring about how to fix various common mini-lathe problems. I don't have much time to work on the page right now, but I wanted at least to provide a few comments and some links.

Some resources every mini-lathe owner should be aware of:


Motor Controller

Particularly on models of the mini-lathe made before 2005, problems with the motor speed controller are one of the most common areas of trouble. LMS has created a great troubleshooting guide for controller and motor problems.

(11/22/09) Here's a link a reader sent me to his mini-lathe controller troubleshooting page.

Usually, one of three components is responsible:

MOSFETs are transistor-like components that act as high speed switches to regulate how much of the AC waveform is applied to the motor, thus regulating the speed.  One or both of the MOSFETS sometimes fail with the following symptoms:

Fortunately, if you have basic soldering skills, this problem is easy and inexpensive to fix.  Replacement MOSFETS are available from LittleMachineShop.com as well as various Internet electronic component sellers for about $5 each.

Don't want to fix it yourself? As of April, 2012,  Pete Brush provides a repair service for the speed control circuit boards.


Other Troubles

I don't have time at the moment to write this section. However, if you check out other areas of mini-lathe.com, you may find information that will help you to solve your problem. See the Tuning section, for example.


Mini-Lathe   Mini-Mill   Bandsaw   Grinder    Anodizing   Lapping    Links   Projects    Resources   Safety   Premium Content

Mini-lathe:  Accessories   Adjustments   Capabilities    Chucks    Dial Indicators   Features   Getting Started   Glossary     Introduction   Materials    Modifications   My Shop   Operation    Reviews    Sieg Factory    Tool Grinding    Troubleshooting   Tuning     Versions