Whadda Pain In The Ass!

It’s my own damn fault too.

A while back I managed to actually BREAK my little 3 inch 4 jaw chuck on my mini lathe.

Apparently I got a little too enthusiastic when trying to get rid of some run out on a piece and over tightened one of the jaws.

All at once it went from being kind of tight to loose and sloppy.

Fuck me. I opened it up and found that I had broken off a thin piece of the casting that holds the adjuster in place.

Chinesium POS.

So I screwed around as usual until I got fed up and ordered a new chuck.

Except this time we are going big and being done with it, right?


Also as usual, I wasn’t paying attention to the fine print.

Probably because I couldn’t fucking see it.


So anyways, I get this new 4 inch lathe chuck that needs to go on a 3 inch spindle.

I thought I saw that the chuck came with an adapter.

I was quite obviously mistaken, because it didn’t.

Going back to The Little Machine Shop website where I ordered it from and doing some back tracking, I see where I made my mistake.

They do actually sell this chuck with a backing plate.

I hadn’t completely lost my fucking marbles because I thought I remembered seeing that.

Where I fucked up was buying the chuck when it was on sale at a much cheaper price.

Apparently somewhere down there in the ant tracks it must have informed me that it didn’t come with the backing plate adapter, you gotta order that separate.

OK then.

Now here’s where I fucked myself, again.

I did all this homework a couple of weeks ago and even looked up the part number for the adapter, which BTW, is only HALF finished. The side that fits on the spindle is done, you gotta machine and drill the holes to fit your chuck!

At the time I didn’t have a lot of playing money so I figured I’d just wait a couple days until I got paid and order one then.

I even kept the ordering web page open with all the info filled out.

Guess what?

Corona virus baby.


hair on fire

Every motherfucking thing got shut down in the next couple of days, including The Little Machine Shop. They ain’t taking any orders.



So being the stubborn asshole I am, I start looking for alternate suppliers.

Somebody somewhere, has got to have one of these little fuckers laying around.

So I keep looking.

I found this one on Ebay,  IN ENGLAND…. for about $32 and whatever the hell it costs for shipping, probably twice that.


Um yeah, I’m sorry, I am not paying to have that piece of fucking shit shipped all the way over here so I can deburr the fucking thing just to get it out of the box and then HOPE it fits.

So I waited.

And waited and waited.

Until today.

It’s not like I don’t have anything else to do but it started raining so my plans got set back whatafuckingsurprise, EH?

Off to the internets we go, looking for a backing plate, again.

Long story short, I actually did find and order one.


How in the hell those guys are open when we aren’t is an absolute mystery to me but I found a pretty popular European supply source for these fucking Mini Lathes called Arceurotrade.

It didn’t take too long to find one, register on their website, fill in the order details, close my eyes and poke the NEXT button to find out what the shipping was going to be.

images (1)


Meh, according to them it was about what they wanted for that hack job pictured above.

Lemme tell ya, if the thing shows up and it looks like that one. some bloke over in Jolly Olde is going to be learning some new vocabulary over Ye Olde Telephone right quick….

complete with Angry American Accent.

So about $45-50, God only knows how long to get it here and I will be on to Stage 2 of the Great Chuck Upgrade.


At this point I ain’t holding my breath.

14 thoughts on “Whadda Pain In The Ass!

  1. I feels yer pain there, skippy. I have some micro-rivets I need to complete rebuilding that customn electric motor (two of them), and I’ve been waiting… and waiting… and waiting. Since I ordered them “factory direct” there’s no ourtesy tracking. Heck, I don’t even know if they’ve been shipped yet, nor by whom (UPS, USPS, FedEx, slow boat from China, etc.)!!

    Mama ain’t a-gonna be happy if the A/C aint workin’ when it’s time to ease on down the road, knowwhutImean??!!

    Hang in there, Phil!


  2. Didn’t see any internal threading in that back plate. Doesn’t the old broken one have a back plate on it? Is your spindle threaded or is it fastened on by other means. Inquiring minds want to know. Just finished two back plates for mine but they were already threaded for the spindle. I just had to shave them down to fit back of the respective chucks and one I had to drill and tap holes for the mounting screws. (The other was nicely pre drilled) My lathe has a fairly common spindle though so finding chuck and proper backs was pretty straight forward. What is the spindle diameter and thread on yours?


    • Yeah, it’s not threaded.
      3 6mm studs for the original 3 inch chuck that gets bolted to the spindle.
      4 6mm studs on the new chuck with a bigger bolt pattern.
      Adapter uses the 3 holes to mount to spindle and then has 4 holes for new chuck on other side.


      • New chuck is 100mm. Spindle is 75 something? whatever 3 inches is in metric.
        It has a recess for a register also and I don’t know what that is off the top of my head.


        • Yeah…just looked at a schematic of the Harbor freight one. I see how the spindle is. Sort of a pain in the ass setup for changing chucks. Mine, I just give the chuck a tap and spin off and put another one on. Saw a post on making the adapter plate from scratch…where is your sense of adventure? (like any of us old farts need another adventure)

          Liked by 1 person

          • Lol! Like I don’t have enough projects already?
            It would be a very major undertaking with my limited shop capabilities. Besides that, I was using the 4 jaw because of excess runout in the original 3 jaw so if I tried to use that the new backing plate would be concentric to that runout. I’ll just wait until the backing plate gets here.


    • I can’t say for sure but since all of these chucks are pretty small to begin with I would think that they all have straight through bores.
      I know the two smaller ones do.


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