Ranger RL-8500 Brake Lathe Review -EricTheCarGuy

The Ranger RL-8500 brake lathe has become my new best friend.

Ranger RL-8500: http://www.bendpak.com/wheel-service/brake-lathes/rl-8500.aspx

Ranger RL-8500 $5545.00: http://www.bestbuyautoequipment.com/ranger-brake-lathe-p/RangerRL-8500.htm?gclid=COuplKGjtsgCFQ6maQodenUH5A

Ranger RL-8500XLT (heavy duty version): http://www.bendpak.com/wheel-service/brake-lathes/rl-8500xlt.aspx

Honestly, I had all but given up on machining rotors and drums in favor of replacement. That’s all changed since I got my Ranger RL-8500. In the instances where machining is possible, this brake lathe makes all the difference. I would wager I could have a set of rotors machined and back on the car in less time than it would take you to go to the auto parts store and pick up new ones. As you know, time is money in the repair industry. Also, if you’re working with a vehicle that has hard to find parts, reconditioning may be your only option.

Here’s an interesting fact that many of you may not be aware of. Most rotor and drum manufacturers recommend putting a new surface on NEW rotors and drums before installation. Granted, it’s rarely an issue, but it is something that’s recommended.

All that said, I’ve been using the heck out of this lathe since I got it and haven’t been disappointed. There was a bit of a learning curve, but I think I’ve got it down now. Some of the controls were a little confusing to me because I wasn’t used to them. Now that I’ve learned to use them, they make a bit more sense.

I’d recommend this brake lathe to anyone considering purchasing one.

Camera: Brian Kast

Thanks for watching!

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Discussion about this video: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/kunena/18-The-EricTheCarGuy-Video-Forum/60376-ranger-rl-8500-brake-lathe-review#149211


Rotor Measuring Tool: http://www.jbtoolsales.com/fowler-72-234-223-micrometer-disc-brake-w-digital-readout-metric#oid=1002_1

Digital Brake Drum Measuring Gauge: http://www.jbtoolsales.com/gearwrench-3777-digital-brake-drum-gauge#oid=1002_1

Related Videos

How To Replace Drum Brake Shoes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCpCkun2qxA

Removing Brake Drums the ‘Easy’ Way: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Po-WXqIKjHQ

How To Isolate Brake Pulsations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AAbET9aKq_g

Drum Brakes, When To Discard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OWcn6NzTxbg

Drum Brakes Quick Look: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXMFVx8jJLU

Torquing Wheels and Why it’s Important: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DA4ug4gHccM

Useful articles.

Engine overheat: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/what-to-do-when-your-engine-overheats

No start problems: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-automotive-no-start-problems

Idle issues: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-automotive-idle-problems

Performance issues: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-automotive-performance-issues

Diagnosing Noises: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/diagnosing-noises-in-your-car

Diagnosing Vibrations: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/determining-the-causes-of-vehicle-vibrations

Electrical Problems: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-automotive-electrical-problems

Brake Issues: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-brake-problems

Transmission issues: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-transmission-problems

HVAC problems: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/solving-automotive-hvac-problems

Buying a Used Car: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/what-to-look-for-in-a-used-car-purchase

Leaks: http://www.ericthecarguy.com/faq/finding-and-fixing-leaks

MPG: http://ericthecarguy.com/faq/finding-and-fixing-the-causes-of-poor-mpg

The best place for answers to your automotive questions: http://www.ericthecarguy.com

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Due to factors beyond the control of EricTheCarGuy, it cannot guarantee against unauthorized modifications of this information, or improper use of this information.  EricTheCarGuy assumes no liability for property damage or injury incurred as a result of any of the information contained in this video. EricTheCarGuy recommends safe practices when working with power tools, automotive lifts, lifting tools, jack stands, electrical equipment, blunt instruments, chemicals, lubricants, or any other tools or equipment seen or implied in this video.  Due to factors beyond the control of EricTheCarGuy, no information contained in this video shall create any express or implied warranty or guarantee of any particular result.  Any injury, damage or loss that may result from improper use of these tools, equipment, or the information contained in this video is the sole responsibility of the user and not EricTheCarGuy.


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25 thoughts on “Ranger RL-8500 Brake Lathe Review -EricTheCarGuy

  1. About the bits, there are 3 sides to it, you can use it up to 3X when each tip is worn. Technically, you can use it up to 6X. Once the 3rd tip is done, swap it. The right one goes to the left and the left goes to the right, back to first tip. Just a quick tip, that helped me conserve bits 👍

  2. I don’t understand these, brakes convert forward motion and energy to heat. Heat is absorbed by the rotor, when you cut the rotor you decrease the thickness and the ability to absorb heat. So you decrease the performance of your brakes as well as increasing the chance you over heat them and they warp.

  3. That's a nice tool! I used something like that in high school, but that was it. The one we had probably dates back to the turn of the last century!

  4. Brake Lathe is the most asinine tool In my opinion anyway. Rotors are cheap and Brake Lathe's are way way to high. Get a real lathe and you will be able to make tools like drivers, sleeves, punches and such! Now it does require more space but that is not an issue in your new shop.
    Sorry but I must disagree with you about owning a brake lathe.

  5. These are nice lathes–that is when they work. There are three motors that operate this machine, along with a electronic control board. Good luck dealing with the numb-skulls at Ranger when you need to order parts. There are differences in the models between the years–and some parts do not fit all machines. The numb-skulls at the parts depot are usually young snot-noses who know nothing about the product they are supporting. The machine is manufactured in China (Shanghai) and OEM'd to Ranger here in the USA. These are just reworks of the old Rel's brake lathe. As I said–good luck sourcing a controller board or one of the feed motors once they burn out.

    If you are going to purchase a brake lathe, purchase a used Ammco machine off of Craig's list–and then have it serviced if required. Ammco's only use one motor and everything is driven mechanically–and thus are cheaper to service and easier to source parts.

  6. when i buy my first car the brake disks wents were full of rust. The owner was using the car for fising so too much water and not much breaking. The disks were thick almost like new but the wents omg. I machined the drums, new disks and break pads, new fresh DOT3 (flush the system), new 4 months old tires. Now the car break like new, only squeak when i steping down of the breaks. I know is something in the back brakes but it dont squeak all the time and its not loud so i let it be

  7. I had a set of aftermarket Brembo brakes that were drilled, it made much more sense for me to have them machined than to purchase a new pair. So yes in many cases its easier to replace, but for "custom" parts its less expensive to turn them.

  8. To be honest I just really don't see the point of these, for less money you could get a good 30 to 40 year old medium size American or British made lathe with a gap section bed (for flywheels ect..).
    It would be more accurate and you'd have a machine that will be better quality and a lot more versatile. That would be my choice anyway.

  9. Confused by the comments of people saying no one machines rotors anymore, on a typical day at work I machine multiple sets of rotors, but of course with an old ass 20 year old Ammco machine lol you bet your ass if our shop had one of these id be vacuuming it up every night as well lol

  10. I work in a high volume private workshop in Australia we got an old ammco second hand 8 years ago it's the old manual box with two speed belt drive we can cut just as smooth on that as you do in this vid. We still machine about 50% of rotors the other half is replace it all depends if the rotor is soft and how much meat the gingerbeers give you to play with.

  11. Nice machine i don't care what the naysayers think. And if these lathes are still being manufactured today there must still be a market for them.
    I can't believe Scotty Kilmer comments on your videos. You must be a badass.
    P.S Those "cutting bits" are called "inserts" or "carbide inserts"

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