Horizontal vs Vertical Lathe

What is a Lathe? A Lathe is a machine tool that rotates a workpiece about an axis of rotation to perform various operations such as cutting, sanding, knurling, drilling, deformation, facing, and turning, with tools that are applied to the workpiece to create an object with symmetry about that axis. Lathes come in different sizes and are available at multiple price points, and it has been incorporated into CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machines. CNC lathes can be divided into two main types, “>Vertical Form lathe and Horizontal lathe machines. Horizontal Lathes and Vertical Lathes consist of the same components with only a few real differences between the two. So, we will discuss what is the difference between the two lathes.

The Horizontal Lathe

A Horizontal Lathe is a machine that rotates a workpiece cylindrically. The Horizontal Lathe is represented by the machine tool classification number indicating the horizontal type. It has high rigidity and good shock resistance. Its feed box is equipped with a metric thread conversion mechanism. This is the one that you mostly see in workshops. It makes fast, precise cuts while a workpiece is being rotated in a horizontal axis. It operates on the material using tools to give it the desired form or shape. The feed box is equipped with a metric thread conversion mechanism, and the selection of the thread type is convenient and reliable. It is also effective for complicated programs that would overwhelm a manual lathe. Most Horizontal Lathes can incorporate automatic bar-stock feeders. It is usually used for lighter materials and it holds the object vertically.

The Vertical Lathe

A Vertical Lathe is a machine used to operate on large and heavy materials. It relies on rotary cutters to remove metal from the workpiece. It has a high-strength cast iron base and a column for good stability and shock resistance. It can be divided into single columns and double columns. Small vertical lathes are generally made of single columns, and large vertical lathes are made of double columns. It is also less complex than horizontal machines. Vertical Lathe has gravity as an advantage because, throughout the operation of the machine, the workpiece is always stable. Vertical Lathe is essentially a horizontal lathe that has been designed to stand on its own. And with a vertically oriented spindle, tools stick straight down from the tool holder and are often cut across the top of a workpiece. It is mainly used for processing large and heavy workpieces with large diameter and short length and workpieces that are not easy to be clamped on Horizontal Lathes. The main features of the vertical lathe are: the workbench is in the horizontal plane, and the installation and adjustment of the workpiece is convenient. It can be used for turning large and heavy diameter objects that are relatively short.

Both Horizontal and Vertical Lathes will allow the machinist to create similar products. But the two lathes have differences in characteristics, operating procedures, and structure. In using the Vertical Lathe, the machinist must work in an up-and-down motion while Horizontal lathes, the machinist works the metal in a side-to-side fashion. Vertical Lathes might have an advantage over horizontal lathes in circumstances where workpiece sagging is a factor but Horizontal Lathes has a low height and is easy to operate. Horizontal lathes are probably better known and prevalent, but vertical lathes should not be underestimated. Both Lathes still play a major role in part machining.

If you’re interested in buying a used lathe machine, make sure to look through our used CNC Machine inventory. Contact us today and we’ll help you find the right machine that’s perfect for your application.

Get Inventory Updates Every Month!

If you're a frequent buyer of used machines, sign up for our email list to receive a monthly update of our new inventory!

Section 179 Deduction Calculator

This Section 179 Deduction Calculator can help you decide whether or not to purchase or lease equipment in the current tax year!

Find out More
S&M Machinery Financing Partner

S&M Machinery partners with Complete Capital Services for all your machinery financing needs. Visit them to find out more:

Get Financed Today
Get Inventory Updates Every Month!

If you're a frequent buyer of used machines, sign up for our email list to receive a monthly update of our new inventory!

Section 179 Deduction Calculator

This Section 179 Deduction Calculator can help you decide whether or not to purchase or lease equipment in the current tax year!

Find out More
S&M Machinery Financing Partner

S&M Machinery partners with Complete Capital Services for all your machinery financing needs. Visit them to find out more:

Get Financed Today