You—and your illustrator—have done a masterful
useful for those of us who are easily confused without thoughtful
instruction. I was so delighted to find "Essentials" clear, blessedly
free of jargon and assumption and so effectively illustrated.
Thanks for producing such a good and useful piece of work.
Dear Mr. Marlow,
I find your book to be well written, beautifully illustrated and extremely helpful. I am a research neuroscientist by profession, so mechanics and machine shop work is more a hobby for me, albeit a serious one. Nevertheless, I think your book should appeal to enthusiasts and beginning professionals alike. It was a breath of fresh air after having looked at either dated references with photographs of industrial machines or at home shop manuals with very limited information. You have done a very good job in your coverage and exquisite detail of both lathe and milling basics and beyond. I will write a brief review shortly for Amazon.
Georg Deutsch, PhD
Division of Nuclear Medicine
Department of Radiology
University of Alabama at Birmingham
Machine Shop Essentials is an excellent reference for the metal-working novice and professional alike. Geared towards small prototype R&D shops that mostly rely on manual machine tools, this book describes the basics and some of the more advanced concepts in the field.
Done in a question-and-answer format, the questions answer everything from basic to more advanced topics. This book covers many of the essentials needed for skillfully operating basic machine tools and also includes hand tool basics, measurement & layout, fastening methods, some steel metallurgy, safety and other shop know-how.
Additionally, many entries serve as a good reminder and overview covering those practices that we've learned, but may forget over time. So, this book is definitely an excellent addition to any metalworking library.
It's kinda like having an eye to eye contact with a teacher. You are not talked down to. Topics are discussed like the author is talking to you. The book is easy to read and understand. I am a beginning machinist, so I needed that edge. The problem area's I had were covered just like I had asked to author to write it for me.
I would recommend this book for anyone with a machine in their shop.
—Robert W. Mitchell, Prescott, Michigan
I have owned a fairly nice Atlas 12" lathe for several years and recently purchased a Bridgeport milling machine to replace an old Jet 16 vertical mill. I also bought a copy of Machine Shop Essentials to help fill in a few "knowledge gaps." The book came highly recommended on the CAMS (Capitol Area Machinist listserv)so I knew it would be better than most machine shop books but I was absolutely delighted when I received my copy.
This book is terrific for those of us who enjoy working in a home shop to build models and to generally make repairs on things that are broken. The author has prepared this book to be easy to understand and simple to reference. The many drawings and diagrams are clear and concise so I can quickly understand what is being explained. Whether I'm lookin for a refresher on using a rotary table and dividing heads or how to cut threads on my lathe, I can quickly find what I need to know.
Machine Shop Essentials is not full of fluff or huge charts of numbers that only a seasoned tool and die maker will understand. It is jammed with easy-to-understand explanations and diagrams of how to properly use common and some not-so-common tools and procedures in your shop. I have already dog-eared my copy and keep it handy in the shop while other books remain in the bookshelf for those times when I have plenty of time to absorb a more complex and in-depth treatment of a subject.
Machine shop Essentials will become your favorite reference for quick tips and easy-to-understand explanations of how you can use a wide range of machine tools to make your workshop jobs easier and fun--while getting the results you expect without a hassle.
I highly recommend this book to anyone that likes to work with metal and especially to thos of you who are thinking about pruchasing a lathe or milling machine for your home shop.
And if you're wondering...no I was not paid for this review...I simply think this book is excellent and think you'll love it too.
I am new in machining field, and quite honestly without anyone that could help me or to occasionally answer my questions. After reading this book I got many of my questions answered. What I like the most, is that the book is written in the way that is easy for reading yet with enough technical details. The space is given to the topics that are really important for anyone starting in this field as a hobby or as profession. It is clear that Mr. Frank Marlow surly has full knowledge and a lots of experience with a talent of transferring it to the reader.
Now after I am done reading, I keep the book in my shop to occasionally remind myself on how something is done. The feature found in the book - all important tasks are explained and listed in numbered and consecutive order just like user manual for treading, turning, milling... It is what you would expect in the user manual that come with your milling machine or lathe, but you never find it there.
After reading the book I was so excited to test my new acquired knowledge and I did a few projects. Not just that I succeeded in my projects, but also I had a pleasure doing it just as explained in the book - step by step and it it all worked.
If you are new in this field, like myself, this book would be the best tool that you could buy for your shop. I am strongly recommending it.
—Vladimir Simovich, San Francisco, California
I bought this book because I wanted a basic treatment of machine shop tools and processes. I am not a machinist, but I'd like to add that to my list of hobbies at some point, and before I jumped in, I wanted to read up on what I should expect in terms of equipment, tooling, how-to's and such. This book is smack on for that sort of thing. It's also done in the same style as Welding Essentials (another very good book) -- sort of a question and answer format. As a welder, I still consult that book on occasion, and I could see coming back to Machine Shop Essentials as a reference in the same way. The illustrations are very good. Worth the money for me.
—David L. Bean, Salt Lake City, Utah
Machine Shop Essentials is an absolute must for the manual machining newbie, or CNC people wanting to delve into the manual world. The common sense in-depth information, coupled with the remarkable illustrations by Pamela Tallman, give the reader a really big heads up. Particularly those interested in doing machining operations for prototype developments, industrial model making, instrument making, custom motorcycle or car building and the like. But having said that, there's also plenty of good information, resources and tips for the machinist who's been "over, under, around and thru the chips".
The Machine Shop Essentials book is a great tool to add to your necessary collection
of machinists tools."
—D. Speice, Westerly, Rhode Island
***In Machine Shop Essentials: Questions and Answers, Frank Marlow has produced a book that spans the gap between a textbook of machine shop instruction and a home shop hobbyist's manual. Most machine shop textbooks are relics of a bygone era and aimed at running larger machines in a production environment and most hobbyist books are only oriented at the use of tabletop machines, not at general shop practice. This book contains content that will teach one how to run a variety of machines and how to handle most basic and advanced machine shop projects. Unlike formal textbooks the book's format is one of questions and answers, such as "What are the essential measuring and marking tools and how are they used?", "What do drill bushings do?", "What is trepanning and why is it used?" and "How are internal dovetails milled?". After each question Frank engages in a clear description of the process and the tools required. The writing is informal and non-technical yet contains good practice and full information for each of the questions asked. The examples in the book make use of several levels of machine tools from Sherline benchtop machines to Bridgeport milling machines and Clausing engine lathes. The book is copiously illustrated with over 500 line drawings which clearly show the ideas presented in the text. "Machine Shop Essentials, Questions & Answers" with its thorough grounding in basic and advanced machine shop practice is a useful text to add to any machinist's library.
Machine Shop Essentials is a helpful collection of information that will introduce the essential processes of metalworking to the new machinist...The process of cutting metal can be extremely complicated if you try to cover every possible contingency, but Frank has done a good job of hitting the highlights without getting into detail that might never be of use to someone working in a home shop....
—Joe Martin, President & Owner of Sherline Products Inc.
Machine Shop Essentials is an excellent book which presents a wide array of basic machinist's know-how...Even from a brief look through it, I learned some new things....
I often get asked, "What's a good book on basic metalworking and machine shop practice?" From now on, I'm going to say, "Get yourself a copy of Machine Shop Essentials."
—Guy Lautard, Author of The Machinist's Bedside Readers
In almost all respects, this volume is a complete contrast, being 500 plus pages of bang up to-date material. As the introduction comments, the book covers manually controlled machines as might be used by model makers, instrument makers, car and motorcycle enthusiasts and gunsmiths....
What you will not find in this book is page upon page of reference data, as you might find in Machinery's Handbook. Thus in the section on taps, few tapping drill sizes are given, but the concept of "Percentage Engagement" is clearly explained and it is noted that tap loading can be reduced by up to 65% by changing from 80% engagement to 60% which is adequate for most situations. This is also a book almost totally devoid of photographs. It does however boast over five hundred line drawings, which illustrate topics with excellent clarity of detail. In many instances, a section view shows what the camera cannot.
In summary, it may be thought that the use of the word "Essentials" in the title is to understate the scope of the book. It provides rather more than just the bare essentials for most of what one is likely to encounter in amateur or low production machining work.
—Review in The Engineers' Workshop (UK), June, 2005