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For decades Metal Lathe Accessories has been offering kits of castings for making useful accessories for the metal lathe. I’m considering buying their Steady Rest kit as the price for a used/import steady rest for my South Bend 10K lathe is three times as much ($150-$200). Other useful kits that stand out are the Die Filer, Milling Attachment and Quick Change Toolpost, but everything they offer looks useful.

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While the amount of work needed to make these kits into useful accessories is somewhat hefty, the kits are a great way to learn metalworking techniques while adding to your shop. In my years of following internet discussions I have only heard glowing reviews of the quality of the MLA castings, drawings and instructions.

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Metal Lathe Accessories [State College Central]
Steady Rest [MLA]

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4 Responses to Metal Lathe Accessories

  1. Larry says:

    Man, listen to the crickets in here! I can’t believe more people aren’t into machine tools!

  2. John McClain says:

    I bought machine tools while on active duty in the Marines. I bought and built a machine shop over thirty years, and have been living the “life of Riley”, with my own machine shop, and doing my own engineering. I ran across this article trying to find what is apparently gone. I’ve probably spent a thousand or more over the years with Andy, and got top quality castings, well designed tooling, a hundred dollars buying what cost two thousand on ebay. I used my twenty year old threading tool post today, I use my filing machine daily, two of my Logan lathes have cross slides with slots for milling and boring, I had hopes of suggesting adding a new tool, I’ve been thinking about a “bench hand shaper”, for carving our small parts to close fits. I’ve still got a couple kits to finish or start, but it’s disappointing MLA is gone. I hope someone picks up the slack and takes the place. It’s nice having solid iron, no voids, cracks, knowing it will work many decades after I’m gone, if anyone knows what to do with tools.
    Semper Fidelis,
    John McClain
    GySgt, USMC, ret.
    Vanceboro, NC

  3. Thomas says:

    Andy’s kits are great! He is still in business, spoke with him last week and bought another kit. I have a few more pieces I plan on getting, including the filer mentioned by the previous poster.

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