Clarke Machine Tools

Written by ian kelly
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Clarke International set up shop in 1969 to sell mechanical and electrical workshop equipment. Headquartered in Essex, England, the company distributes its wares worldwide. The company's small lathes, milling machines and drill presses incorporate many of the features found in large industrial machines. In addition, Clarke produces a range of woodworking machines designed for the home workshop. Although Clarke specialises in small machine tools, the company also produces a range of industrial metal-cutting band saws, drill presses and tile-cutting machines. Models listed are from 2010.

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Clarke Lathes

The smallest Clarke bench-top lathe, model CLM250M, has a distance of 10 inches between centres, 6 inches swing over the bed and a 3/8-inch hole through the spindle. The machine is powered by a 150-watt 3-phase motor and has a variable spindle speed from 100 to 2,000rpm. This unit does not have a power feed or thread-cutting capabilities.

The next size up is model CLM300M, a slightly larger lathe complete with power feed, left- and right-handed thread-cutting capabilities and a thread-cutting indicator. The lathe comes with a fast travel carriage, compound mitre slide, self-centring 3-jaw chuck and many accessories. The machine weighs 45.4kg. and measures 32 inches from front to back.

The most sophisticated models are the CL430 floor-standing unit and the ALM500M compound lathe, the same lathe as the CL430 but fitted with attachments. This upgraded version is fitted with a 12-speed milling/drilling machine and is capable of most operations a model engineer is likely to encounter; an array of optional equipment is available. The distance between centres on both models is 17 inches, with a swing over the cross-slide of 12 inches. A 3/4-horsepower motor drives both machines.

Clarke Milling Machines

Clarke makes two bench-mounted milling machines suitable for the home workshop. The smallest micro mill/drill, model CMD10, comprises a cast-iron head, base and precision ground column. It has a 3/8-inch Jacobs-type chuck and a throat depth of just under 6 inches. The precision ground table measures 9 1/2 inches by 5 1/2 inches and has three 5/16-inch "T" slots; the face mill capacity is 13/16 inch and the end mill capacity is 7/16 inch. The machine is belt-driven with a 150-watt motor and weighs 31.8kg.

The most advanced model is the CMD1225, a compact heavy-duty machine suitable for home and professional use. It has a 1/2-inch chuck and a 2 1/2-inch milling cutter. The ground table has finely calibrated three-way slides for precision work. Forward and reverse spindle speeds vary from 90 to 2,150rpm; the face milling capacity is 2 1/2 inches and the end milling capacity is 1/2 inch. Optional extras include a 2 1/2-inch tilting vice and a 52-piece clamping kit. The machine is belt-driven by a 3/4-horsepower motor and weighs 200kg.

Clarke Woodworking Machines

Clarke woodworking machines include the CS46D compact disc/vertically mounted belt sander; a fully functional 10-inch circular saw, model CTS10D; the CLW25 mini wood lathe with variable speed; the CSS16V 16-inch variable speed scroll saw; and the CBS355 three-speed band saw with a cutting capacity of 7 1/2 inches and a mounted sanding disk.

All these machines are bench-mounted units with small footprints. Clarke also makes the model CPT250 free-standing 10-inch portable thickness planer, suitable for home workshop or contractor use.

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