Rediscovering Woodworking #2: Adding a multi-purpose Machine to our limited space

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Blog entry by Tim Royal posted 11-21-2014 04:28 AM 2652 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Making old tools usable with no space!! Part 2 of Rediscovering Woodworking series Part 3: More Hybrid than Power Journey »

I am keeping this entry brief as I am a bit limited on time. I have heard many critiques of the Shopsmith over the years. I have always found it to be an ingenious woodworking tool for someone with very limited space. The tablesaw has it’s issues, which have been talked about in a million forums, but I have a tablesaw that I am happy with, what I do not have nor have space for is power sanding, a bandsaw, a lathe and a drillpress.

The primary strengths of a Shopsmith in my situation are the drill press and horizontal boring machine, the ability to add machines and the lathe. The two Shopsmiths available are the common Mark V and the original 10e/10er and each has advantages. The Mark V has more power, a better tablesaw and is more flexible with add on tools while the original is more stable as a lathe and I believe makes a better drill press, as well as being available in good shape in my area for as little as $75. These are my primary needs and so I began to lobby Dan to purchase one, as I owned the TS. We found the one pictured below for only $80 in excellent original condition. I have added the cabinet/stand to my projects as I built it together with Dan to further reduce the SS’s footprint and increase the storage. It is simple shop furniture using recycled and re-purposed wood from an older oak desk. The most amazing thing is the stability that it adds vs. a stock 10er stand. I have not yet done any turning with this machine, but I suspect it will be rock solid compared to most SS lathe setups. It is also amazing how small the footprint now is!

I have been at work in our new shop… a sneak peak of the coffee table I am making for my daughter:

It is a combination of pallet and recycled walnut over a 1/2 inch mdf base. The beautiful spalted oak was a nice bonus!

-- -Tim Royal -"Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real." -Thomas Merton

3 comments so far

View NormG's profile


6576 posts in 4495 days

#1 posted 11-22-2014 02:43 AM

Great job of using the SS to your advantage

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View oldguy2's profile


340 posts in 2918 days

#2 posted 03-06-2015 07:27 PM

Congrats on using a Shopsmith, look on utube..Carl Holmgren. I ran across his shop and setup and tricks with his shopsmith 10ER. He has dust collection ideas and mobile bases and storage that should be in books. On my site is an outfeed table for the table saw maybe you can use it for either saw since it folds down made the Shopsmith. I hope you could upgrade some day the real features of a Mark V, drilling no belts and depth setting are so easy. table made for woodworking. Lathe I have made a round 16 inch tray in cherry still impresses me to this day, my sears lathe could only do about 11 inch. Mine is almost 30 years old with minimal care and I added the new wheels and have some the accessory tools. I can move it about with one hand. I can use any brand of 10inch blades and make my own inserts. Keep your eye out for one and check it out. And call up and tell them you are an owner for free customer assistance…who else does this?

View Tim Royal 's profile

Tim Royal

353 posts in 2977 days

#3 posted 03-11-2015 07:47 PM

Thanks OG2… from another Old Guy… I actually got the idea for a reduced footprint from Carl’s 10er video. My design is significantly different and a good deal more stable in the laid down position with a fixed base for the cabinet (no wheels). He built his cabinet under the tilting mechanism with wheels and added a rather flimsy setup for the tailrest. That works for him, of course, since he uses his almost exclusively as a drill press. Mine intentionally uses 1 1/4” thick oak veneered pressboard from a used desk in the cabinet sides and top… attractive but quite heavy and good at absorbing vibration (why it is used in speakers), and is mounted in the opposite configuration. The lathe, sander, tablesaw, etc… are all significantly smoother than the stock setup as a result. No wheels= No movement. BTW, because of the weight the 10er is actually a better lathe and horizontal borer than the Mark 5 and a DC motor can be added to give more power and speed control, though Carl’s jackshaft setup is a great poor man’s speed controller (10er had a factory option). Check out this website… for a treasure trove on the SS 10er as well! There is also a Yahoo user group that is still active.

-- -Tim Royal -"Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real." -Thomas Merton

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