Author Topic: Quick Change Tool Post.........  (Read 13355 times)

Offline Artie

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Quick Change Tool Post.........
« on: June 02, 2010, 07:34:47 PM »
I had grand thoughts of making a quick change tool post for the lathe. I sought out any number of build threads, some designs I liked, some not so much. One thought was quickly apparent re the tool post itself, this is a large lump of steel to begin with, it isnt going to be cheap dollar wise nor labour wise.

I have a large lathe (12 x 36) and accordingly needed a large qctp, these were damned costly at well over $400 for the set, post and holders. Looking around I found that I could buy the tool post itself delivered for $85 and the much simpler tool holders could be made up over time. The dovetail cutter I already had and lumps of steel size enough for tool holders I have heaps of.

This is certainly the economic way of upgrading and still allows you an element of self achievment, but even further, it allows you to make that tool holder exactly as YOU need it, not as the factory wants you to have it.

I have intentions for several steel tool holders.... and then it all started..... why cant things like the parting off tool holder be a lump of (polished??)brass? Or even the boring bar holders (ill need 2 of these)..... these units are relatively low load holders, I wouldnt consider the standard style cuting tool holders in brass (for this large lathe) but Im pretty certain that it would be strong enough for the boring and parting tools.

Anyone have any experience here? I can cast any sized brass block I need and I have quite a large brass inventory so that cost is minimal and more importantly the manufacture would be much easier milling brass over steel.

This all came about because last night I made the first of the standard holders. From steel using the HZ mill for the majority of the metal removal and then the vert mill for the finish and dovetails. This took a couple of hours for one holder.. Im thinking 2 more in steel and 3 in brass.

Unless of course anyone can point out what I am missing here....

Jump guys, your thoughts are needed.... and I know..... pics to come today..... :worthless:
South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2010, 06:10:55 AM »
pics as promised..... firstly the bars that I have about 5 metres of.... from a machine shop and had em for years.....



Hand finished.... I use my files a lot....



Polished in the mill once the main tool marks are gone....



Once reasonably smooth... its placed on the heater to make warm/hot......




Then the 'secret' ingredient.....







The first cut is the deepest.... you could write a song about that....



Ill be 'joining' the cut sections of the stock (spot welding) and cutting the several holders in one go..... once the shaper is home... and the final cut with the dove tail cutter....

Its all fun!

Rob T
South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Offline michael3fingers

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2010, 08:08:28 AM »
hi mate

I am a bit of an amature so I would like to use this method of obtaining a qctp. Where did you get it from ?

Offline madjackghengis

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2010, 10:24:30 AM »
Hi Artie, as one who has used cut off tools for years, they would be among the last tool holders I'd make out of anything but good tool steel, and hardened after the machining is done.  Other than that, you look like you've got a good handle on the making of tool holders, I expect you'll get them done faster with the shaper, once it's back, I wish I had bought just a tool post and made the holders, I've got too many of some, which don't get used, and have to swap tools around in others which get used too often.  It looks like you did it right, and got what you wanted.  Looks good :bugeye: mad jack

Offline cidrontmg

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2010, 01:06:09 PM »
I also like making things of brass, but a tool holder - no way. The tool bit will be fixed to the holder with screws...
I donŽt think screw threads in brass will be up to the task, especially on a big lathe. Maybe (or maybe not...) on a watchmakerŽs lathe, or an ornamental turning machine, but with a Myford-size or bigger, I wouldnŽt even bother trying.
Also the hammering   :bang:  that the tool holder is subject to, when doing interrupted cuts... IŽd bet a brass tool holder will be modern art within weeks.
IŽd be glad to be proven wrong, though. IŽd also make some brass tool holders then, but not before  :)
Olli
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Offline swhite

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2010, 01:11:14 PM »
Hi Artie,
I bought an A2Z QCTP and it came with 4 tool holders, 1-boring, 1-cut off, and 2 for square tools, I made 4 more for the square tools out of aluminum, they work great and I saved about $25.00 each on them, they were a bit slow going when I cut the 60 degree angle on my mill but they work well, I like your steel version and the gun blue does the trick...

Nice job,

Steve W.

Offline JimM

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2010, 03:18:31 AM »
Hi,
sorry for jumping in on this thread but I've also just bought one of these tool posts and am planning on making my own holders. I haven't got a suitable length of material to hack them all from at once so will have to make them individually - how suitable would cast iron be to make them from. I've got a few old window sash weights which I'm hoping to use but am new to machining so not sure if CI would be OK ??

Thanks

Jim
Location: Chessington, Surrey

Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2010, 08:38:47 AM »
Hi guys, back in town after picking up the shaper, been on the road for 15 hours apart for a stop over at Tels place. So pleased with it. Ill do an in depth interview with it later.....

Gday Jack, are we talking about the same tool? Parting off tool? Ive never even remotely stressed mine and I use a pretty big lathe. In fact I would say its a very low load holder. But I do take what you are saying on board. The shaper will certainly make this job a lot easier... and the damn thing is brand new (albeit bought in 1948), I mean its hardly been used and owned by the same family since new.

Cidrontmg, I think you had better go back and read the post again.... no ones suggesting using brass for the normal tool holders, only the lightly loaded types....... but thanks for your thoughts  :headbang:

and Swhite, Im certain that if the right areas are left chunky then what youve done is feasible, Ive heard of it before and youve proven the concept. Im choosing to use steel because my lathe is a biggun and could potentially create a lot of stress on a lesser material, thanks, the finish looks better in the 'flesh' than the pics give it credit for. Ill definately use it for a lot of steel stuff.

Ive also got a small nickel plating set up for bike stuff, that might be interesting....

Jim, mate jump in both feet! Thats what these forums are for.. I cant help you but I would suspect the cast iron to be a tad brittle, but as with aluminium, if left 'chunky' in the key areas it might prove feasible...

Im off to bed, sparky coming tomorrow to wire up teh shaper and a couple of small repairs to do...then...tool holders!

Rob...
South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Offline Jonny

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2010, 09:44:22 AM »
Jim personally i would try it, although there are different grades of cast etc I would assume Englisg sash windows being old not the newer stuff recycled cast steel would be stronger.
Machines have been made out of cast for decades look at your lathe etc its all cast.

Looks same QCTP as the one i have which replaced a proper Dickson. Trouble i have is obtaining steels in useable quantities and price, aluminium and stainless steels no problem.

Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2010, 03:10:58 PM »
An update as to the progress of the tool holders...

After making the first unit with the dovetail cutter I decided to wait until the shaper was set up and I got myself up to speed with using it before continuing.

heres the first shaper made unit I did as a trial the other night... pretty happy with it.... gee this makes dovetailing soooo easy.....



That time has come and tonight production line stuff happened.... sort of... ::)

This is what I am using for stock and its trimmed up into sections on the old power hacksaw, but becuase of the existing large groove I had to weld it back together in a different orientation to do more than one holder at a time, see next two pics....





Once welded I used the horizontal mill in 'metal rip' mode to remove the bulk of the stock for the dovetail groove... this is much much faster than the vertical mill or the shaper, in fact it took just 12 minutes to remove 60 cubic centimetres of metal (40 x 15 x 100mm).



Finish wasnt great but the metal was gone! The shaper is next.



Took a cut right across the tops to flatten it and then a cut across the floor to remove the HZ mill tool marks, the next 2 are vids of the action, just click on them, sorry about the quality but im using my fone as my camera for this...





Once squared and flat (finish was just lovely....)... the dovetailing started!! Change tool holder to the angled unit, a quick shrapena dn away we go. Because this is a manual feed operation I have no vid of it nor pics of it happening.. BUT I do have a shot of a spectactular stuff up.... see if you can pic it..... it made me call it a night after I had fixed it... I was obviously tired...

Roughing the dovetail out....


Thought it was almost finished... oops....


Fixed.....


Anyone notice that I had cut it to 70 degrees? USE MY GLASSES NEXT TIME! When I set the vernier on the shaper to the required degrees (30 from vertical) I had it on 20... just couldnt see the small number well enough  :(

SO I stopped there and will resume tommorow.... night all.....

Rob T

South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Rob.Wilson

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2010, 03:42:24 PM »
Hi Rob


Looks like your having way too much fun  over there :lol: :lol: :lol: see your putting the HZ mill to good use to  :dremel:

See your getting a great finish with  the shaper  :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

Cheers Rob

Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2010, 03:48:53 PM »
Too much fun? Is there such a thing?  :) :D :) :D

Yeah mate its great, loving it... here a vid of the HZ in action.... kinds like it as well....... unlike a lathe, the shaper is really forgiving and provided the tool angles are close it gives a great finish even if the tool isnt as sharp as it could be... amazing machine...

« Last Edit: June 25, 2010, 03:51:34 PM by Artie »
South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Rob.Wilson

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2010, 03:58:13 PM »
Hi Rob


MMMMMMMMMM dun no,, too much fun at your age  :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :D :D

Just a thought , whats the cost of a dove tail cutter over in OZ ?

You going to make a piar of Vee blocks next  :med:


Cheers Rob W

Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2010, 04:03:55 PM »
Jeez bloke! Im only a puppy (spritely 48) bring the fun on! Ill worry bout the heart attack later... plenty of time for that....  :doh:

I bought mine about 2 years ago and I THINK it cost just under $100, still go it... used it to make the first tool holder.. didnt enjoy using it.

V blocks are definately on the list...its just that the list is loooong... (so whats new about that?)  :lol: :bang: :bang:
South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Rob.Wilson

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2010, 04:12:37 PM »
 :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: i should shut up ,,,,,,,, not far behind you  :bang: :bang:

So at that price you would not get many dovetail cutters or gear cutters  for what you pay'd  for the shaper  :med:

OH the list its good that its never ending  :D
 

:beer: Rob W




Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #15 on: June 26, 2010, 07:21:18 AM »
Hi Rob, yep, I agree.... makes very good economical sense....

Just to conclude this one... some pics of todays bits. I wont go into the finishing of these as Ive already completed one... nothing startling in the process.

Got the other side of the dovetail done, seperated the 2 parts and offered up to the tool post... quite a firm slop free fit... I like it!



All that are done so far....



And the last pair ready to get the treatment....



And that should do it for now..I will experiment with a coupel of brass units and post up the results.

Cheers Rob
South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.

Offline Brass_Machine

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2010, 09:57:53 AM »
Good job Rob!

Those look pretty good.


Eric
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Rob.Wilson

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2010, 02:55:34 PM »
 :thumbup:

Rob W

Offline Artie

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Re: Quick Change Tool Post.........
« Reply #18 on: June 27, 2010, 04:51:31 AM »
Gday Eric n Rob, yes Im pretty happy with the way this turned out and I now have a new skill...... :D :)

I was asked today if the accuracy was as good as a dove tail cutter.... so  took this pic... what do you think? I dont think I could ask for better....



Accuracy, like all machining processes is up to the operator and his/her set up technique. The angles here are straight off the vernier scale of the machine... looks pretty good to me...

As you can see this hasnt been dressed up yet, straight out of the vice of the shaper....

Cheers Rob T

South Wales, wait...NEW South Wales... Batemans Bay.