Turning Point in History

Today, April 2, 2009, I have finally officially acquired the Facility to Turn Piddly Things:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/27683124@N07/sets/72157616190601557 /
Those who groaned every time I mentioned lathes can relax (as can my wife who threatened physical violence if I did not buy one already).
Note I say "facility", not "ability" - that would imply some sort of skill.
In the end the decision was made by a configuration of factors, mainly pricing and availability. The little Taig with the 4-jaw chuck cost me Cdn $370, all the other accessories came from garage sales, auctions and cannibalism of existing unused equipment. Also, I was impressed by the fact that those who own the Taig do not seem to want to part with it and with a few notable exception the rep was that the little fella works out of the box unlike the imports.
I had all sorts of grandiose plans of making it run slower but in the end the excitement got better of me and I just mounted it as is to get some experience.
I just faced off a little piece, cut a shoulder, drilled and tapped it. I was impressed that the machine indeed seems spot on out of the box. It is also very quiet (compared to my mini-mill - I see a belt drive coming for that, too).
There are things that it will need: A knob for the tailstock, extension for the tailstock lever and a few indicator mounts to mention a few. However, I do not wish to fall into the trap of spending the next few years pimping my Taig at the expense of productive work. And, oh, there is still the Big Beast to finish...
Happy days!
--
Michael Koblic,
Campbell River, BC
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Congrats, Michael.. I know you'll enjoy working horizontally on a workpiece. The new machine should compliment your mill very well.
Every piece of metal you see may start to look like project material.
--
WB
.........
metalworking projects
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Michael,
FINALLY!
Just be most careful when you come to a screeching stop on your mountain roads to pick-up that piece of scrap lying at the side:-)).
Happy turning.
Wolfgang
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On Thu, 2 Apr 2009 20:37:09 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Still trying to figure a way to mount that four foot section of heavy wall six inch pipe on my three foot bed 9" SB -"A" to make something as yet to be determined. All I know is that it was a good lift to get it into the car. Gerry :-)} London, Canada
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    [ ... ]

    Hmm ... how big a bull-nose live center can you get for the lathe? (And can you swing the 6" diameter (or is it larger and the 6" is the ID) over the slide? If not, you'll have to saw it before turning.
    I've worked on some thick-wall aluminum pipe (to make WiFi circular waveguide antennas), and for that I adapted a chuck from a smaller lathe to an interchangeable point live center to make a live chuck for supporting the tailstock end from the inside.
    Enjoy,         DoN.
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wrote:

I haven't yet figured anything I want to make from it. It just looked so lonely lying beside the highway twenty years ago. Now it looks lonely standing behind the shed, which reminds me, I should move it before it sinks in far enough to damage the phone lines etc. running underground between the fence and the shed. Gerry :-)} London, Canada
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    A smart woman. Keep her!

    Congratulations!
BTW    It is likely that the motor has some jumpers under the wiring     cover which will allow it to run clockwise instead of CCW.
    But -- the way it is reduces the chances of metal turnings going     into the ventilation slots and causing exciting things to happen     around the centrifugal switch assembly. (A plastic shield to     deflect turnings would be a good thing to add.

    You probably don't need to make it run much slower than the step pulleys will give you already -- unless you set it up for really large diameter turning of tough metals. If it had a leadscrew and threading gears, then slower would be nice to have, but when turning by hand, you are find.
    Have you noticed the stop rod which clamps in the headstock (front side) and stops the carriage at a preset position?

    Very quiet, indeed.

    Note that it is covered with small T-slots, so you have a head start for mounting indicators on it. That is one of the real pluses for the Taig.
    You might want to consider the 3-jaw chuck, which comes with soft jaws, and will be really nice for repeated production of small parts. You might want to pick up a couple of extra sets of the soft jaws so you can turn one for normal work, one as a reversed step jaw set for larger work, and one (or more) turned for specific holding of otherwise awkward workpieces.

    But -- you will have a lot of fun working with this. (You are already discovering some of the benefits of it. Look into the 3-jaw chuck which I mentioned, and look into a quick-change toolpost from one of the small machines sources -- with quite a few tool holders so you can set them each up for the proper turning height for each tool which you use.
    Enjoy,         DoN.     
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I am hoping she will keep me. In a style I am totally unaccustomed to.

Looked. Switched. Turned the same way...

The slowest it will go is 525 rpm. The tables tell me it is good enough up to 1/2" of steel or 1" aluminum. I would like a bit more capacity.

It is my best friend.

There seem two kinds: The ones that take #10 square nuts and much smaller ones. I measured those and got 0.173" although others tell me that they in fact take #4 square nuts with a tight fit. I don't know; I thought the #4 were 1/4" wide...
I wonder if it is more time efficient to machine toolposts to hold indicators or just bolt a largish steel plate behind the lathe to use my magnetic bases on (and maybe get more versatility that way).

"And one more just for fun" (Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof). And collets. And the top slide.

I got a box full of interesting things: I have what looks like a quick change toolpost with a whole stack of toolholders which hold 3/16 bits, many already ground in various interesting shapes including boring bars. It has some issues which I now need to solve, but after that a riser block to bring the post to the right height will expand my tooling significantly.
The same box contains a live centre (actually two but one needs some work) which I am pretty sure will fit into the tailstock (I have not tried yet). It also contains a steady rest which must have been used on an even smaller lathe somewhere. Looking at it it should be a (reasonably) simple matter of making a block with the appropriate dovetails that would allow it to fit on the Taig ways.
Prioritizing time has become a real issue with several projects in progress. It may be that I shall use the Taig as is to help me with the other stuff before I give it the Christmas tree treatment :-)
However, your helpful comments are noted and saved in the appropriate file for future reference.
--
Michael Koblic,
Campbell River, BC
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Congrats on the starting point of your turning history. 525 RPM isn't outrageously fast for 1" steel and good-quality HSS or 5% Cobalt bits.
My first lathe was less capable than a Taig due to design flaws but it did what I needed for close to 10 years, until I started buying and repairing other machinery.
You might find a drill chuck useful if you can fit one to the 3/4-16 spindle. They are less likely to injure your hand or fling the file when smoothing details on small parts.
With a protractor disk and a lock on the spindle, you could put the lathe on the milling machine to mill polygonal sections on the .
Jim Wilkins
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When posted it was "gnomon" in Greek.
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On Sat, 04 Apr 2009 05:26:35 -0700, Jim Wilkins wrote:

It did show in pan as "gnomon" in Greek, ie, as γνώμων, gamma, nu, acute omega, mu, omega, nu, rather than as what you quoted, ãíþìùí, which looks like tilde a, acute i, thorn, grave i, grave u, acute i.
--
jiw

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[Taig}
http://www.cartertools.com /
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Jim Wilkins wrote:

I spent a whole lot of time there as well as on others. Remember, buying this baby was worse than having one delivered by a breech :-)
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Michael Koblic,
Campbell River, BC
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    Hmm ... they've got ER-16 collets -- a significant improvement over the ones which I got with mine (which are still offered as well).
    Enjoy,         DoN.
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Jim Wilkins wrote:

Thank you.

There is an attachment that fits on the spindle that has a 3/8-24 thread which would take the chuck that ordinarily lives on the tailstock. I have seen someone on one of the numerous sites devoted to Taig making a drawbar with a taper that fits into the spindle with the other side of the taper threaded the same way. That, however, is a bit too sporting for me at this stage of the game.

I do believe that comes under "pimping" :-) Would that be Greek for "gnomon"? All I know about Greeks is to fear them when they bring gifts...they can infect your computer with Trojan condoms!
Michael Koblic, Campbell River, BC
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3/4-16 is a standard chuck mount thread. They are very expensive new. The advantage over an adapter is the hole through the center. I picked up a Jacobs headstock chuck with a 1-1/2 x 8 threaded mount when a tool dealer cleaned out his back shelves to remodel. To adapt it to my lathe's 2-1/4 x 8 spindle I made an internal adapter with a 1" shank to fit in a collet on the lathe or mill, and an external sleeve like a bell chuck, which doesn't clamp as tightly but lets me center the work.
When I go on a treasure hunt I take a copy of the lathe spindle end, made from water pipe. You could keep a 3/4-16 bolt in the car.
Jim Wilkins Timeo Danae, et dona ferentes
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Jim Wilkins wrote:

It never occured to me that you could get a chuck with that large a thread. Must look!

Another excellent point! Will do.

That is from that poem written by Homer Simpson, isn't it?
--
Michael Koblic,
Campbell River, BC
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    [ ... ]

    O.K. You saw the label on the underside of the wiring cover? That usually tells you what needs to be switched. Sometimes it is a pair of wires with quick-disconnect flag terminals crimped on, other itmes it requires interchanging two rings on the ends of wires on studs with nuts.
    And sometimes, there is no such choice. :-)
    [ ... ]

    O.K. Either pick up another motor (what is the speed on the nameplate of the motor which you have? If it is a bit under 3600 RPM, you can get other motors of similar horsepower at a bit under 1800 RPM, 1200 RPM (and rather more rare) 900 RPM. So you can reduce the speed by a factor of two, three, or four.
    Or -- a DC motor with a controller can be run down to very low speeds at need.

    Good. Not too many lathes come with a built-in carriage stop like that.

    Take the milling machine, and a long piece of aluminum or mild steel of about the width of the slot at the bottom, then mill off each side just enough so it will fit in the upper part of the slot, Then drill and tap holes of some convenient thread size (metric or Imperial -- your choice) and then saw it into as many T-nuts as you have tapped holes. Now you have a collection of T-nuts to use whenever you need.
    I forget whether the Taig comes with real T-nuts, or with just square nuts which fit at the bottom of the slot. The real ones have longer thread engagement, and thus are stronger. Make sure that the narrower part is just a little shorter in height than the upper part of the T-slot, so you don't have it remaining loose because you are tightening down to the top surface of the T-nut instead of to the material where the T-slot is.

    I did that with my Unimat SL-1000. It was bolted to a 1/4" thick aluminum plate mounted on four shock mounts to keep the noise of operation from disturbing my downstairs neighbors when I lived in an apartment, and then the area behind the bed had a 1/8" thick steel plate screwed to it. Note that when you are machining steel, you'll collect a lot of chips on the magnet base whenever it is turned on. :-)
    A dial indicator mounted on the base has its uses, as do ones mounted to the headstock T-slots.

    Yes. The top slide for turning tapers -- which is normally part of larger lathes. It is a bit awkward to install and remove. It needs an Allen wrench (hex key) with a somewhat longer shank than is usual, or at least a ball-end one.
    As for the collets -- I don't use the normal collets which come for it -- though I have them. Instead, I bought the alternate headstock spindle for WW series (watchmaker's) collets, which are particularly nice for small workpieces. I also have the similar spindle for the Unimat SL-1000, which must be a collector's item by now. :-) I've gotten a lot of use out of both.

    Nice!
    Great!
    Hmm ... does it look as though it is designed to clamp onto two round bars, with clearance for a smaller bar down the center? Is it painted in a green hammerite paint? If so, it may be for a Unimat SL-1000 or DB-200. If so, the center bar is the leadscrew to drive the carriage.
    For an image of it, go to:
        <http://unimat.homestead.com/refference.html
and scroll on down until you find item No. 1040. It is at the bottom of the sixth page -- but the pages are not numbered, so you will have to count down.
    I have most of the accessories shown for the lathe/mill/whatever.
    Other (even smaller) shapes may be for something like a watchmaker's lathe.

    As long as you have an easy way to lock the steady to the block, yes.

    Understood. The more you use it, the more you will discover what accessories should have priority.

    Best of luck,         DoN.
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DoN. Nichols wrote:

I fear that is the case here. Note: it is a $5 garage sale special.
<snip>

That is what I am hoping for. I am eyeing other people's tread mills and scroll saws. Failing that I was thinking a countershaft with another Taig pulley.
<snip>

Finally something I can relate to from experience as I spent a very unproductive afternoon milling down T-nuts from a commercial clamping kit so that they would fit the slots on my mini-mill (I think I saved a whole of $20 in that afternoon assuming the value of my time = 0)
The big slots take the #10's comfortably and use ordinary square nuts (at least that is what the toolpost comes equipped with). I have looked at numerous web pages and fora and haven't found anyone using proper T-nuts.
The small slots I think are going to be tricky: The throat is 0.111" (as far as one can measure such a small gap with calipers). This would make them too tight even for the #4 nuts. I am not even sure how to get hold of anything smaller here.

Plastic bags or even better - cling film! That is how I have been collecting steel filings for a while (I had a crazy idea of mixing them with epoxy and see what kind of castings I could get out of that mixture).

The main thing is to have one. The only calibration is on the crosslide and even there there is not even a fiduciary mark, let alone ability to zero.

The moment I brought the machine home I realized how many tapers I shall want to cut.
<snip>

No, that is not the one. I have feeling that the chap who put all these things up for auction made lot of them himself. The steady rest has a base which defies my understanding. there is a screw in the middle of the base (well, that I can understand) but also some kind of cam arrangement which does not seem to attach to anything. You can sort of see it in the first picture of this set:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/27683124@N07/sets/72157608551014377 /
as well as all the other things I have been talking about. The toolpost I mentioned is either home-made or he was trying to copy it as there is another one, half-finished, in the collection.

The screw in the middle?
Another issue has come up and that is the placement of the machine. I do not want to keep moving it around so I will probably vacate a spot for it on my recent bench extension. which means I have to park one of my grinders somewhere. Are these bench grinder pedestals any good? I wonder if something more solid would be better if one wants to make a grinding jig for tools later.
There is no end to it, is there :-)?
--
Michael Koblic,
Campbell River, BC
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    O.K. Scroll saws are likely to have weird motor mounting which will be difficult to convert. And -- they are likely to be useful serving their own function. :-)

    :-)
    O.K. But real T-nuts, made to fit the slots, would be better -- more thread length, and thus more grip.

    Hmm ... 0.111" is 0.001" smaller than the clearance diameter for #4 screws. What about metric screws? M2.5 screws would be small enough to clear without problems.
    [ ... ]

    Hmm ... good curly chips -- if you vacuum degas the mixture before it sets, could increase the strength significantly.

    Hmm ... you can make your own mark.
    And -- you can turn collars to slide over the reduced diameter of the handwheels and give them a thumbscrew to lock to the wheel. The main trick, without a dividing head, would be engraving the markings in the larger diameter collar. (Larger diameter does give you more resolution, or greater ease of reading.

    :-)
    [ ... ]

    O.K. Terribly bad jpeg artifacts, so even blowing it up does not help much.
    The screw does look a bit anemic for the task of holding it in place. Perhaps the cam is to lock it into a base, and the screw is only for guidance?

    O.K. The first thing to comment about is the cutter straight above the steady rest. it is a "conventional" milling cutter -- for use on a horizontal spindle mill, or with an adapting arbor on a vertical with less convenience. Looks like a stagger-toothed one, where alternating teeth cut on opposite sides of the cutter.
    The second item in the second photo (rod with an odd profile and carbide insert) is a boring bar. The flats are for clamping it in the tool holder.
    The things with the knurled ends. What is the end with the knurl like? Is that all one solid piece of metal, or is the knurl on an adjusting collar to tighten fingers to grip a ball projection. If the latter, they might be for measuring the centering of a workpiece in a 4-jaw chuck. Mount the piece with the ball in the tailstock. Advance it until the point or small ball hits a center punch or center hole on the workpiece, then as you rotate the chuck by hand, you can set an indicator onto the side of the shaft near the workpiece and determine which side is high, adjusting until you can rotate the chuck fully without any deflection of the indicator.
    The weird "headstock" -- this might be part of a live tool for milling cutters in the carriage of the lathe. I would have to play with it, and might still not be sure.
    Maybe part of a tool and cutter grinder project?
    The handle is not an afterthought, but designed to lock the projection of the spindle.
    The two screws holding the halves apart are probably to limit how tight it will clamp the spindle housing.
    The cross-slide? For certain kinds of lathe work, it is common to have T-slots at both ends of the slide. The rear one is often used with an inverted parting tool so you don't have to swap out the tool in the front when you want to part off. And inverted parting from the rear is often easier on a somewhat weak lathe.
    The toolpost -- note that it has two sets of projecting 'V's, each with its own T-nut and screw. One goes on the side of the toolpost for normal turning and such. The other goes on the side of the toolpost closest to the axis of the lathe, to do boring and facing. So -- the boring tools mount on the second set of ways on the toolpost.
    The tool to the right along the near side is a radius turning tool. There needs to be a lever on the shaft on the other side to pivot that quarter-round 'L' with the tool bit mounted. I suspect that is what produced the radiused grooves before the knurled ends on the centering shafts.

    A bit too weak. I think that the cam might be for that, with the right lathe construction. A closer photo -- focusing only on several views of the steady rest might help.

    Some are quite good.
    People with welding equipment (not me, yet) often weld a large diameter pipe into a wheel from some old car, and weld a steel plate to the top to mount the grinder on.
    I actually need something like that. :-)

    Something with a larger platform so you could mount the grinding jig in place too.

    Nope! :-)
    Enjoy,         DoN.
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