Adding digital scale to tailstock

I recently aquired my Myford M-Type. It has only one vernier scale
and that is on the cross slide. In the current issue of Engineering
in Miniature, there is an article on fitting a linear scale to a
milling machine. The author talks about and shows a picture of a
digital readout (like on a digital vernier) which he added to his
Myford tailstock but gives not details on this.
I am thinking of mutilating one of the cheap (sub 10 pound) digital
verniers that are common now and fitting it to the tailstock but I
could do with some guidance. I can imagine how to mount it to the
tailstock body but am not sure how to attach the moving part to the
I'm thinking of making a collar to fit over the barrel. The collar
could be held in place with a small grub screw but my concern is that
the barrel rotates back and forth slightly - the collar would also
then rotate and cause stress on the digital scale. I am probably not
explaining my concern very well .
It seems likely that this would have been covered in a magazine at
some time - does anyone know where I might find some relevant info.
If this worked well then I might consider adding similar scale to the
cross slide and perhaps top slide too...
Many thanks
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Did this on my small TOS lathe in much the same way as you have described but used a genuine flat scale as I had one kicking about but no reason why not to use the el-cheapo [ TM ] digitals. Pic here:-
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I set it on an angle so it was easy to read. The play in the barrel is caused by the pin that runs in the keyway on the barrel to wear two flats on it. The pin can be changes or a better idea is to make a new key in the shape of a 'T' with a short leg. The short leg is then filed round to fit the hole and inserted from the inside with the barrel removed. The barrel is then fitted. Doing this gives the key a larger bearing surface and less liable to shuffle about.
Top slides aren't used that much to bother, plus the scales are out of proportion to the slide causing problems getting egg bound with the tailstock and anything else local within breeding age..
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John Stevenson
Thank you very much John, that pgoto is great and pretty much what I had in mind. I didn't realise that the tailstock barrel key was simply worn - I shall have to investigate and modify as you suggest. Lidl have some digital verniers on offer this Thursday for 8.99 so I may just have to get a couple and start modifying...
All the best Martin
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Just wondered exactly how 'stable' this type of set up was? I would like to put together something similar but knowing how much the display appears to alter its reading when just used 'properly' (i.e. as a set of calipers) if my hand isn't too steady (perhaps I need to give up drinking instead?), does the vibration from drilling etc cause similar issues when used as being discussed here? Interested to hear any practical experience.... regards Mike
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Following John's advice, I dismantled the tailstock last night with the idea of replacing the key however once I had the barrel out, I could not obviously see how to remove the key. Does anyone have any suggestions? - is it just brute force or am I missing something?
Here are a couple of photos of the key from outside and inside the barrel:
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Regards Martin
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