Safety Rules for Power Tools

  1. KNOW YOUR POWER TOOL – Read the owner’s manual carefully. Learn its application and limitations as well as the specific potential hazards peculiar to this tool.
  2. GROUND ALL TOOLS – If tool is equipped a with three-prong plug, it should be plugged into a three-hole receptacle. If an adapter is used to accommodate a two-prong receptacle, the adapter wire must be attached to a KNOWN GROUND. Never remove third the prong. (See Figure 1.)
  3. KEEP GUARDS IN PLACE – and in working order.
  4. REMOVE ADJUSTING KEYS AND WRENCHES – Form a habit of checking to see that keys and adjusting wrenches are removed from tool before turning on machine.
  5. KEEP WORK AREA CLEAN – Cluttered areas and benches invite accidents.
  6. AVOID DANGEROUS ENVIRONMENT – Do not use power tools in damp or wet locations. Keep work area well illuminated.
  7. KEEP CHILDREN AWAY – All visitors should be kept a safe distance from the work area.
  8. MAKE WORKSHOP KID PROOF – with padlocks, master switches or by removing starter keys.
  9. DO NOT FORCE TOOL – Do not force tool or attachment to do a job for which it was not designed. Use the proper tool for the job.
  10. WEAR PROPER APPAREL – Avoid loose clothing, neckties, gloves or jewelry that could become caught in moving parts. Wear protective head gear to keep long hair styles away from moving parts.
  11. USE SAFETY GLASSES – Also use face or dust mask if cutting operation is dusty.
  12. SECURE WORK – Use clamps or a vise to hold work when practicable. It is safer than using your hand and frees both hands to operate the tool.
  13. DO NOT OVERREACH – Keep your proper footing and balance at all times.
  14. MAINTAIN TOOLS IN TOP CONDITION – Keep tools sharp and clean for best and safest performance. Follow instructions for lubrication and changing accessories.
  15. DISCONNECT TOOLS – Unplug tool before servicing and when changing accessories such as blades, bits or cutters.
  16. AVOID ACCIDENTAL STARTING – Make sure switch is “OFF” before plugging in power cord.
  17. USE RECOMMENDED ACCESSORIES – Consult the owner’s manual. Use of improper accessories may be hazardous.
  18. TURN SPINDLE BY HAND BEFORE SWITCHING ON MOTOR – This ensures that the workpiece or chuck jaws will not hit the lathe bed, saddle or crosslide, and also ensures that they clear the cutting tool.
  19. CHECK THAT ALL HOLDING, LOCKING AND DRIVING DEVICES ARE TIGHTENED – At the same time, be careful not to overtighten these adjustments. They should be just tight enough to do the job. Overtightening may damage threads or warp parts, thereby reducing accuracy and effectiveness.
  20. It is not recommended that the lathe be used for grinding. The fine dust that results from the grinding operation is extremely hard on bearings and other moving parts of your tool. For the same reason, if the lathe or any other precision tool is kept near an operating grinder, it should be kept covered when not in use.
  21. DON’T LET LONG, THIN STOCK PROTRUDE FROM THE BACK OF THE SPINDLE — Long, thin stock that is unsupported and turned at high RPM can suddenly bend and whip around.
  22. WEAR YOUR SAFETY GLASSES – Foresight is better than NO SIGHT! The operation of any power tool can result in foreign objects being thrown into the eyes, which can result in severe eye damage. Always wear safety glasses or eye shields before commencing power tool operation. We recommend a Wide Vision Safety Mask for use over spectacles or standard safety glasses.

Electrical Connections

The power cord used is equipped with a 3-prong grounding plug which should only be connected to a properly grounded receptacle for your safety. Should an electrical failure occur in the motor, the grounded plug and receptacle will protect the user from electrical shock. If a properly grounded receptacle is not available, use a grounding adapter to adapt the 3-prong plug to a properly grounded receptacle by attaching the grounding lead from the adapter to the receptacle cover screw.

FIGURE 1 - Always use a properly grounded receptacle.

FIGURE 1 – Always use a properly grounded receptacle.

In the UK, all plug sockets will be grounded by default.

NOTE: The electrical circuits designed into the speed control of your lathe or mill reads incoming current from 100 to 240 volts AC and 50 or 60 Hz. and automatically adapts to supply the correct 90 volts DC to the motor. As long as you have a properly wired, grounded connector cord for your source, the machine will operate anywhere in the world without a transformer. This has been true for all SHERLINE machines built since 1994. Prior to that, we used an AC/DC motor. Use that motor ONLY with the power source for which it was intended. It will not automatically adapt to any other current and using it with an improper power source will burn out the motor or speed control. Also, the first few DC units built did not include the circuits to adapt to other currents. If you have an early DC model, remove the plastic speed control housing and look for a label on the aluminum speed control frame. If it has a small metallic label on top of the frame that lists input voltage as 120VAC, DO NOT ATTEMPT TO CONVERT TO OTHER CURRENTS. Models that can be used with any current have a paper label on the end of the speed control frame which lists the model number as KBLC-240DS.

The machines are normally supplied with a USA type plug but can be easily rewired to accept a European or U.K. type plug by attaching the wires using the color codes provided below.

Wire Colour Codes

100/240 VBlackBrown
Ground/EarthGreenGreen with yellow stripes
Electrical Wire Colour Codes in USA and Europe.


FIGURE1a - Wire colour codes for USA and European connectors.

FIGURE1a – Wire colour codes for USA and European connectors.

General precautions

  • DO NOT attempt to operate the lathe or mill without first mounting them to a secure base. (See page 6.)
  • DO NOT turn on the motor with a 3-jaw chuck mounted if the jaws are not tightened on themselves or on a part.
  • A chip guard (P/N 4360) is now available that offers additional protection from flying chips when working near the spindle. It is not a substitute for wearing proper eye protection but is an excellent level of additional protection. It will also contain cutting oil to help keep your work area cleaner.

Avoid overtightening!

One of the problems with designing and manufacturing metal cutting equipment of this size is that the operator can physically be stronger than the machine, which is not normally the case with larger tools. For example, a 10-pound force applied a couple of inches out on a hex key becomes a 650-pound force at the tip of the screw. If you tighten both screws on the tool post this tight, it becomes approximately 1300 pounds of force on relatively small parts! Tools and/or parts can become distorted and accuracy will be lost. Overtightening hold down screws and T-nuts in their slots can distort the crosslide or mill table. It is not necessary to overtighten parts and tools because loads are smaller on equipment of this size. Save your equipment and increase accuracy by not overtightening and by taking light cuts.

Don’t overstress the motor!

It is also important to realize that you can overload the motor supplied with this lathe or mill.* The many variables involved in machining, such as materials being machined, size of cutter, shape of cutter, diameter of stock, etc., can leave but one rule to follow…COMMON SENSE!

* The motor is thermally protected, so if it is overloaded it will simply shut down until it cools. See section on thermal protection.


Read all operating instructions and safety rules carefully before attempting any machining operations.



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