Tail Post Turret

So, for a manual lathe who has found a tailpost turret to be really useful?
I know for some folks it would be useless. On the lathe I am thinking baout
getting one for I mostly use one single tool 90% of the time to radius pins. I still have a QCTP on it, because its easier to set tools at the right height, and when I do change tools it seconds. Not even tens of seconds.
I recently setup a job where I had to make several parts where I had to use 4 tools in the tail post. It was no big deal for one part, but for several I started to begrudge the time spent changing tools. I think with as few as half dozen parts the time setting up a turret for the job would have been less than the time spent changing tools.
The ones available are pretty inexpensive as tools go, but I still hate to throw money at stuff without having a commensurate time savings.
I still consider myself a hobby machinist, but as of the first of the year the mold making business is my main business. This is a type of pin I can see myself having to make a few times per year. Not always the same, but similar. I could probably set up the turret for it leaving one hole open, and do all of this type of job I am likely to do with the same set of tools preloaded in the turret. I could probably break even on it in two years at my current rate of this type of job. On the other hand, I might wind up doing more of them now that its my main job.
I've read some forums, and watched a few videos. A few guys really love them, but a lot of folks seem to think its a tool that would mostly be tool drawer candy.
I am still in the process (its been a couple years now) of setting up my smallest lathe for CNC, and ultimately this type of job would be done with a gang tooling setup on it. On the flip side, I think the turret would speed up this type of job instantly. I could even make lots of tool holders for it so setting up for a different job would be fairly quick.
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I think automating them every time I make multiple parts. I rarely make over a dozen of each and for that a 5C collet with a work stop is good enough. I run all the parts through each setup.
Do you have a tool or surface grinder to make custom form tools to combine operations?
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----- Original Message -----
Newsgroups: rec.crafts.metalworking Sent: Friday, January 06, 2017 1:42 PM Subject: Re: Tail Post Turret

CNC and tail post turret are two different things. Sorry if I failed to delineate that better. Sure as I indicated (no pun intended) automating in the future would be better, but when I am in the shop I am busy. If I can improve speed now it might be an immediate benefit.
Tool post turret on a manual lathe would mostly be used like this. Center drill, drill, tap. For one part its no big deal. For a half dozen parts that gets a little tedious with a Jacobs chuck.
I do have a 3C (not 5C) collet closer on that little lathe. In fact I installed the 3C closer so I could support soft stock like teflon rod, but it has also turned out to be faster for my regular operation of radiusing pins as well. I was really surprised how much faster it was to open, pull, insert, close, cut, open, pull... than the 3 jaw chuck was. For one thing I am releasing the collet before the lathe finishes spinning down. I am also never searching for the chuck key or a hole to put it in. If I put a little 3phase motor and control with a braking resister on it to improve stopping speed it would be even faster. Not sure a 30+ year old HF small lathe is worth that, but then I never thought I'd keep it when I bought. I just planned to flip it.
Here's a (way too long) video of installing the collet closer.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vPbnLAngZV8
I was after support of soft stock and maybe speed, but it turned out to be better than I expected too. Now that I have the bigger 14x40 lathe I doubt I'll ever put a chuck back on that little lathe anyway. At about 12 minutes it shows me totally amazed at the low runout of the spindle bore of the lathe. I haven't tried the finished installation with a precicion pin yet, but my dowel pins show just between .0005 upto just less than .001 on the indicator. Way better than is needed for the application. I've got a video I'll probably process next week showing the teflon pin project and their application in a mold. I just got permission from the customer yesterday to show his mold in that video.
Not sure about the tool grinder comments. I actually recently acquired one (as a project for free) that I am fixing up. I haven't decided if I paid to much for it yet or not, but I've gotten decent at grinding tool bits by hand with the bench grinder, finishing on the belt sander, and touching up with a hone. My current radius bit that I use all the time was hand ground. I'm no great tool grinder, but if I take my time and take steps to due it right they come out ok. After I slowed down and did a few properly it started getting faster too.
P.S. Sorry if you got this in your inbox Jim. I accidently hit reply instead of reply to group the first time.
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For example if you find and use a roller box tool the angle of the shoulder at the end of the cut will be determined by the shape of the bit instead of the motion of the crossfeed. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/archive/index.php/t-42808.html
http://downrivertools.com/downriver-tools/turret-tooling
-jsw
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On 7/01/2017 8:41 AM, Bob La Londe wrote:

When I was running smaller diameter plastics in my Omniturn, I often advanced material with the spindle running full speed. Bring up work stop, open collet, grab material with needle nose pliers and pull out, lock collet and go.
Jon
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    [ ... ]

    I seem to see this two ways here. "*Tail* post turret" fits into the tailstock Morse taper) and "*Tool* post turret" (e.g. a rotating tool holder with four sides).
    If it is truly the tailstock turret, one thing which can speed up operations is to replace the crank and leadscrew with a lever to advance the ram/turret. It takes more force for larger drills, but otherwise is an improvement. And it is possible to modify the tailstock to accept lever feed there.
    But the one thing which a tailstock turret lacks which is nice for a lot of repeat operations is individual feed stops for each tool position.
    I have a bed turret (it replaces the tailstock and feed is with a set of levers and a rack and pinion gear similar to the quill feed for a drill press quill. It also automatically advances to the next station when you fully retract the slide. Not sue whether one has ever been made for the small HF lathes, however.

    I read it that way, at least. Two separate things.

^^^^ ^^^^ ^^^^^^
And *here* is where I saw "tool post turret", thus my confusion.

    O.K. I have not gone to the video which you mentioned later, so I don't know whether you have a handwheel closing collet setup, or a lever closing one. Lever is a lot faster, though you could likely grip the knob as the spindle is spinning down to have it loosen for you. But lever closing, and a station on the turret dedicated to a stock stop means that you can feed the stock while the spindle is still spinning, thus eliminationg one stop/start cycle for the spindle motor. Long stock through the spindle needs a support tube outboard of it to avoid it bending and whipping, and it is possible to set up a compressed air powered piston in the support tube to feed the stock to the stop in the turret. A foot switch to a solenoid valve to turn the air on would help there.
    I was lucky enough to get a 12x24" Clausing with a bed turret (matching serial numbers, and I had to chase down a normal tailstock for it for some uses, so I've had a while to determine what works for me with the turret.

    Stock through the spindle, with advance while the spindle is still spinning would be even faster. :-) Just part the workpiece off as the last operation before the stock feed.

    :-)

    Videos are a pain for me on this system -- I have to move to a laptop to see them with sound., as the needed flash player is not being updated for the system which I normally use.
    Enjoy,         DoN.
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"DoN. Nichols" wrote in message
If it is truly the tailstock turret, one thing which can speed up operations is to replace the crank and leadscrew with a lever to advance the ram/turret. It takes more force for larger drills, but otherwise is an improvement. And it is possible to modify the tailstock to accept lever feed there.
**** If thought of a couple different ways I might accomplish that. Sounds like a project for a time when all my other projects are caught up though. LOL.
But the one thing which a tailstock turret lacks which is nice for a lot of repeat operations is individual feed stops for each tool position.
**** Yeah, it is a trade there.
I have a bed turret (it replaces the tailstock and feed is with a set of levers and a rack and pinion gear similar to the quill feed for a drill press quill. It also automatically advances to the next station when you fully retract the slide. Not sue whether one has ever been made for the small HF lathes, however.
**** I saw one like that shown in a YoutTube video when I was looking for other folks experiences with one. Quite a slick bit of kit.
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On Fri, 06 Jan 2017 13:06:54 -0700, Bob La Londe wrote:

Do you mean tool post or tail post?
I have a tool post turret, and even as a hobby machinist I find it's handy to keep two or three tools in it at any given time. Usually it'll be a cutoff tool and a right-hand turning tool, but sometimes it'll be a right-hand turning tool and a left-hand turning tool (for facing).
Every once in a while I'll do some short run of identical things, in which case I'll actually put some thought into what's in the tool post, and I'll index it, and all the rest -- then I can zip through the lower- precision parts of a job just by looking at the numbers on the dial.
I don't have a turret on the tail post, but if it did, and if I had the money to populate it, it'd have several Jacob's chucks with the most commonly used drill sizes in it, or one quick-change Jacob's and a center.
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I mean tail post. I use a QCTP on the compound. Its pretty fast to change tools. Like I said. Seconds. Flip the lever, pull one, drop the next, flip the lever back.

The tailpost (tailstock?) turrets I've seen use a 5/8 cylinder in the holes. It would be dead easy to make a bunch of 5/8 OD tool holders to go in it. If I did several at once, even cross drilling and tapping for the set screw would go quick enough. Quicker if I ever get around to finishing the tool post drill I am making.
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Bob La Londe wrote:

I'd rather get a few more holders for the QC dovetail toolpost and forget the tailstock. About the only cutting tool a tailpost is good for is really heavy drilling. Otherwise, you can do it all on the toolpost. A DRO (or CNC) helps in that matter for keeping track of the X position for each tool.
Jon
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I've actually got quite a few tool holders for the QC.
What got me thinking about the tailstock turret was center drilling, drilling, and tapping several identical parts. Then reversing the part, center drilling, and drilling the other end.
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I do the center and initial deep pilot hole by swapping Morse shank tools. http://www.collistoolholder.com/cgi-bin/groups.cgi?typ T_9_TYP_Q
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    Depends on what you are doing, of course. I've a project which I used to make in quantities which required turning do a diameter, center drilling, drilling a tap diameter hole, tapping the hole, and threading the reduced diameter part. All of these were done in the bed turret -- leaing the cross-feed and toolpost mostly for parting off, and a touch of a file to bevel certain spots on the product while the other tools were doing their thing. The turning to diameter was done with a roller box tool. TH eOD threading with a Geometric die head, the tapping with a releasing tap holder, and the center drill was fitted inside the work stop (a flick of a lever to advance or retract it), so it was all pretty much automated. But it really helped that there were individual feed stops for each station on the turret, which the tailstock turrets don't have.
    Enjoy,         DoN.
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wrote:

You are loosely describing a "turret lathe, if you add some sort of power feed for the tail stock turret you would have something similar to the first automated production machines. And, yes for repeated operations it should be substantially faster. :-)
Certainly for your center drill, drill, tap operation, that you mention in a different post, it will be quicker and if you could some how index spindle speed it might be even faster.
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On Friday, January 6, 2017 at 7:48:56 PM UTC-5, John B. wrote:

Tailstock turrets can be useful for a few simple repetitive operations. In the jobshop in which I was a partner, in the early '70s, we had one on a 8-inch SB. It was pretty handy.
However, we also had a Herbert (British) turret lathe, which had a real turret. That's the machine on which I spent most of my time. The tool feed on those is much better oriented toward production turning, and it was vastly more productive.
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Well, I decided to try one. If it doesn't work out then EBAY.
I need to pick up some various shop supplies, gloves, face shields, oil, drill rod, cutting additive, etc from MSC, and low and behold they had a 25% off with free freight for orders over... well mine was already way over, so the tail stock turret cost $68 and some change. A lot cheaper than I was expecting.
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wrote:

Greetings Bob, I used to work at a place that had a tailstock turret. I trhough it would be pretty neat for center drilling, drilling, and then reaming. But not so much. This is because it takes a long time to move the tailstock or the tailstock quill. So I instead put the little turret into a QC holder made for holding cylindrical tools like a boring bar. I usually have my tool posts set parallel to the Z axis on the lathe so all I had to do was go the the right setting on the lathe crossslide dial and drill away. Using the turret with the QC toolpost made it very useful. Eric
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wrote in message
Greetings Bob, I used to work at a place that had a tailstock turret. I trhough it would be pretty neat for center drilling, drilling, and then reaming. But not so much. This is because it takes a long time to move the tailstock or the tailstock quill. So I instead put the little turret into a QC holder made for holding cylindrical tools like a boring bar. I usually have my tool posts set parallel to the Z axis on the lathe so all I had to do was go the the right setting on the lathe crossslide dial and drill away. Using the turret with the QC toolpost made it very useful. Eric
**************
Eric, This is a very good insight. I'll try it the way it is intended, and then I'll consider options for QC mounting and quick alignment.
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    And -- it gave you a power feed, assuming that your lathe had feed gearing in addtion to threading half-nuts. (And a quick-change gearbox, of course.)

    One other is the lever feed modification for the tailstock ram. Make a screw which fits into the leadscrew threads in the ram, mill a slot in the end, a link from that to the lever, another link from the far end of the lever to the side of the tailstock (allowing for approximate centering of the feed forces), and a cushion grip on the end of the lever and you have quick feeds similar to a drill press. (For that matter -- make the modified leadscrew into the ram connect to a rack gear, and add a pinion gear with four handles (three is too few for convenient transfer of hands when you need to apply significant force.)
    Since I have the bed turret, it has the rack and pinion feed, and is big enough to drive 1" shank tools, instead of the 5/8" ones common in the tailstock turrets. The real trick, however, would be to come up with some form of individual stops selected by rotating the turret.
    Good Luck,         DoN.
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Either that or a poor man's DRO on the tail stock. Write down the numbers and go... if you can keep all the operations within the travel of the tail stock ram anyway. You could of course increase that functionality (if there is room) with a couple clamp stops on the bed ways. Similar to the micrometer stop many of us use for the carriage. Push it forward against one stop for one set of short tools and back agains the other for the longer tools.
A depth stop on the individual tools is also possible by making the tool holders with a flange larger than the bores of the turret. Large enough to bore a hole for a stop rod along the tool and a set screw to hold it in. It would be very fiddley to setup for a job, but would be very fast for some jobs once it was setup. Actually if you have a height gage and a surface plate I expect it wouldn't be that fiddley to setup either. It wouldn't work for all applications, but it would for some. For those it wouldn't work with on the stock, you might use a bar on the tool post as a touch for your individual tool stops. If that's not easily done make the tool holders longer and press a ring onto them to effectively do the same thing.
The advantage of the stop rod on each tool holder is you could make dozens of them cheap and easy, and leave them setup. Just add a list of them and how they were set last in your shop notes book. Mine is called "The Pink Book." Its a pink 3 ring binder my daughter gave me that holds tables and notes I use all the time. I even have all my color recipes for plastisol in the back, along with drill and tap charts, materials hardness tables etc etc.
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