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I bought this machine Harbor freight combination 3 in 1 mill/lathe, with spindle bore approx. 0.75 inches and longitudinal distance 17" and swing over 16"; can i do barrel work for instance crowning on rifle barrel by passing through spindle bore; it has belt and pulley system. any other gunsmithing this machine could be good for? can i do rifling ?

..........I may have had the same machine you do. I got it from HF in 1995 and it had no power feed, nor did it have any threading capabilities. The only barrel work I did was to turn back a step on a military Mauser barrel, and turn down a barrel at the end for a sight base. Both were passed through the spindle and held at the muzzle end with a live center in the tailstock.

If your machine is like the one I had described above, you can for sure make stuff on it, but it is VERY basic. One of the issues is the small spindle bore and also the lowest speed is pretty fast. ANY lathe is better then no lathe. I graduated from a 3/8 VSR drill moter clamped in a bench vise to the HF Mill-lathe and thought I'd died and gone to heaven.

The mill portion of the machine was actually of more use then the lathe. The issue with it was the very small table area. My suggestion since you already have it is to use it as a learning tool, and do things on it within it's capabilities. But starting right now, I would start saving my money to buy a real lathe with at least a 1-3/8" spindle bore, and at least a table top mill/drill. You will rapidly become disatisfied with the limitations that particular combo machine places on you.

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