Lathe Stand Build

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Blog entry by Eric_S posted 11-27-2010 11:23 PM 6835 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Decided to build a lathe stand for my new HF lathe after hearing how flimsy the legs were that came with it and seeing them for myself. The plans are from PlansNow, and this stand isn’t going anywhere.

Each leg weighs around 40 lbs and the top around 70lbs. Adding sand to the ballast adds another 60lbs. The lathe itself weighs 180lbs.

I still need to buy new bolts for the lathe to attach it to my thick top and drawer slides so I can add the drawers I made. Other than that this is complete. The ones that came with it aren’t long enough for my 2” thick table.

The legs and top are composed of a two layers of 3/4” particleboard(says to use over ply or MDF for the weight). After these are glued I glued up a layer of 1/4” hardboard to each side. Then for the legs 3/4” pine was added around the edges and rounded over with a block plane. The top had 3/4” pine as trim. The plans use Hard Maple for the trim and drawers but I wanted this to be on the cheap and quick side side so I bought 8ft #2 10” x 3/4” S4S boards from Home Depot for around $8 each.

Here is a leg with a pic of the sand bag I’ll be using in the ballast. I don’t have a close up pic of the top.

The ballast construction. Just 3/4” pine with bottom sitting in 3/8” grooves on sides and dividers in 3/8” dadoes. The end dividers are 3/4” away from end and will sit on a 3/4” support block on the legs to hold it while attaching.

When the stand is assembled you add sand to the ballast to add extra weight and vibration dampening. This ballast piece has a removable top you can see in later pictures. I added dowels to keep it in place on the ballast and provide a sturdy top for putting finishes or whatever else I decide to use it for. By not sealing the ballast you allow for the stand to be disassembled. It’s connected with carriage bolts through the legs, 2 in each side 9” up from bottom.

After that you screw mounting rails 5”x depth of legs x 3/4” pieces to each leg to bolt the top to. Another 5” wide rail runs between the legs and attaches to the those pieces with screws. The table top is then fastened to those rails with 1/4” x 3 1/2” lag bolts, 2 in each rail.

With the new lathe :) I had to remove the headstock assembly to reduce some weight since I was lifting this thing by myself while my wife is at work.

My shop dog, Ninja, decided to check out what was going on before I made the room into a mess.

Now I have to sharpen the chisels and then I can start using this beauty. I also will be adding drawers as stated above, but I dont have the 12” full extension drawer slides yet. It also has an extra optional piece for holding lathe chisels that pivots out from the table. I plan on making this as well. This was a great project and if you need a new lathe stand I recommend it.

Final dimensions are
Top: 58 1/2” x 16”x2” (including 3/4” trim)
Legs: 15”x30×2” with an additional 3/4” trim to cover edges.
Ballast: 42 1/2” x 10”

I was hoping I could fit my worksharp 3000 at the end of the table since the lathe has a 33 3/8” bed but I forgot the extra length of the headstock, outboard extension, and tailstock turn wheel so it ended up taking the entire length. I guess I will have to build dedicated small sharpening station for my worksharp 3000. I plan on adding dust collection as well to it.

I also need to make some scrap bin storage. This is a pic of all the stuff displaced by the lathe stand in that area.

I hope to be able to actually turn my first things later this week. Thanks for looking.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

5 comments so far

View Toolz's profile


1004 posts in 3160 days

#1 posted 11-28-2010 12:58 AM

Neat build. Best of luck with your turnings.

-- Larry "Work like a Captain but Play like a Pirate!"

View rozzi's profile


323 posts in 2740 days

#2 posted 11-28-2010 01:50 PM

Nice stand. Bought this same lathe a year ago. For the money a good deal and works good. Actually I haven’t had much trouble with the stand but I have only turned small things. If I do have trouble I’ll now know what to build. Thanks for sharing.

-- Duane, Iowa

View gul's profile


400 posts in 2380 days

#3 posted 11-28-2010 04:42 PM

Looks strong.Nice stand.

View NBeener's profile


4808 posts in 2592 days

#4 posted 11-28-2010 05:19 PM

I love a good shop fixture.

And a good shop dog.

Oddly, since you built that stand … my car seems to idle more smoothly, so … thanks :-)

To every thing, turn, turn, turn ….. !

I’m thinking about contemplating the notion of considering lumber storage, too—for me … the kind that lags into the joists above, runs along a shop wall, and puts “tines” or “prongs” perpendicular TO the wall, and angled slightly up.

Gonna’ have to find just the right plans.

Meanwhile, you’ve GOT some pretty nice scrap, there ! Maybe even a nice blank or two :-)

-- -- Neil

View Eric_S's profile


1551 posts in 2613 days

#5 posted 11-28-2010 06:15 PM

Rozzi, I plan on starting with small stuff likes pens and such but wanted to do larger items as well so hopefully this will serve well for those items.

Neil, glad I could fix your car.
I went through all that scrap as I was moving it, deciding what should be scrapped and what shouldn’t. I came across a lot of pieces that will make nice practice blanks. I also decided I have enough left over ply and what not to make a few extra fixtures like a sharpening station, drill/charging storage, and a scrap bin.

Neil I’m using Rubbermaid’s Fast Track system with the vertical rails. Each level can hold 300 lbs. FWW has a good link for doing storage with 2×4’s attached to the studs and then steel pipe angled slightly up drilled in for laying lumber across. I just dont have anything for smaller scraps….yet.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

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