Shop Made Quick Change Toolpost

A few weeks ago now I finished a quick change toolpost for the Schaublin.

The design is based on Andy Lofquist’s MLA-23 toolpost.  Andy is the man behind the wonderful Metal Lathe Accessories kits (http://www.statecollegecentral.com/metallathe/).  While I’ve never ordered any kits from Andy, I’m told that they are very high quality and are exceptionally thought out.

After quickly considering a Tripan toolpost and changing my mind after I saw the prices on those I ordered a set of drawings for the MLA-23 toolpost.  The original design is for 9″-12″ swing lathes.  The Schaublin is an 8″ swing lathe.  After drawing up the original toolpost in Fusion and drawing up the Schaublin cross slide it was evident that it was too big.  I decided to design a scaled down version, making some changes along the way.

The largest change is in the dovetail size and the shape of the body itself.  I wanted something that would match the Schaublin’s size, but also look, so I manufactured the body out of round material instead of square.  The toolpost is optimized for 1/4″ HSS tools, but 5/16″ will fit.

The internal workings are that of the MLA-23 toolpost.  The design is exceptionally rigid and works very well.  It is also a wonderfully simple in design.  Part of the reason I really like this design is for its simplicity.  I believe the best design is one that doesn’t allow you to take anything away.  This design, in my opinion, is one of those designs.

Some people don’t like that the toolpost doesn’t repeat in angle position – that is once you loosen the locking handle you completely loose the rotational position of the toolpost.  This is a downfall of the design if you truly need rotational position repeatability.  When I work in the shop I’m constantly moving the toolpost around to allow for tool clearance.  So much so that I made a handle for my Aloris clone on my 10×18 lathe a number of months ago.  I do have provisions in the design to allow for graduations on the base to allow for visual rotational positioning.  We’ll see if I add it.

The build was interesting and fun.  I learned a number of things along the way including how to cut dovetails on the shaper.  It took a bit of time, but it reaffirmed the very useful nature of having a shaper in the shop.  Instead of waiting for a dovetail cutter I could grind up a simple tool and cut nice dovetails, at any angle, and get a super finish.  I’m told you can build the entire toolpost with a lathe, but there is a fair bit of milling work so even a mini mill would be a huge help.

Since the design borrows heavily from Andy’s design I don’t want to release drawings.  What I’m planning on doing is forwarding a set of drawings to Andy to include with his prints if he is interested.  So if you want to build the smaller version, which is a perfect size for the mini lathe, send me an email and I’ll try to get you a set of drawings.

I made a build video of the entire toolpost in montage style format as well.

 

Schaublin 102 is Making Chips!

Although I’ve talked about it with Max on the podcast, I’ve never announced on the blog that I picked up a made in Switzerland Schaublin 102.  102 is the turning radius in millimeters (about 4 inches).  The lathe was in pieces, but in very workable condition.  I dragged it home and it sat for a few months until I found the time to get to working on it.

This week I finally managed to get the 102 making chips.  It took some work mostly in the drive area.  I didn’t have access to the proper voltage to drive the existing motor so I decided to replace the original Schaublin motor with new 3/4 HP Baldor that I picked up a year ago for $50.  I also wanted to keep the mechanical variable speed drive working.  I could have got the old motor rewound, and I might do that some day, but the $800 that I was quoted was a bit rich.

After modelling up the existing motor in Fusion I designed up a pulley to fit the Baldor, spacers to place the new motor in the same location as the old one and a motor mounting plate.  I used old school methods to make up a plate to mount the VFD and associated electrical components.

I made a montage type video of all the work:

I was pretty happy with how it turned out.  Here is an animated gif showing a test cut that I did with the lathe:

Aside from making up the required parts, I spent a fair bit of time cleaning out the bed, cross slide, tailstock and the interesting air – oil lubricating unit for the spindle bearings.  I also have several hours fishing the air – oil lubrication lines back into place in the headstock.

I’ve never used a plain turning lathe before, and quite frankly until I did I thought they were a bit of a joke.  In the past no carriage or leadscrew caused me to immediately write off plain turning lathes as useless machines.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  In fact, as I used my import lathe more (which has a carriage and leadscrew) I realized that I do 80% of my work without such features.  If you have the chance to pickup a plain turning lathe in good condition, jump at it!   Many people devalue such machines and as such you can sometimes get a very good deal on a lathe that is exceptionally capable – and a joy to use.

Next up is a proper toolpost for the lathe, a backing plate for a Buck 6 jaw chuck I picked up, and probably a faceplate.  That is unless I manage to pick this stuff up used somewhere.  I really don’t count on that happening though.  Parts and associated tooling for Schaublins usually demand high prices.

 

 

Home Shop Machinists Podcast – Episode 5 – Cake Decorating and Hauling Iron

After getting confused as to what podcast they are recording, Max and Justin talk about hauling machine tools home.  Of course the stories keep getting better and more ostentatious the more they are told.  We also talk about:

You can listen to it directly here:

or you can download it directly.

Subscribe in iTunes (and please rate us!): https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/home-shop-machinists-podcast/id1180854521

Max’s website: The Joy of Precision and also his Youtube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdMt_havo3BxZJscvRCOGcw

Justin’s Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/thecogwheel

Home Shop Machinists Podcast – Episode 4 – From Grass Cutting to Space

Max and Justin invite Dan Sherman on for some general shop talk.  We started talking about what is going on in the shop but in true home shop machinist fashion this episode heads off on several slightly off topic tangents.  Within this episode:

You can listen to the episode directly here:

or you can download it directly.

Special thanks to Dan for joining us.  Dan’s website: https://www.dans-hobbies.com/ Be sure to subscribe to Dan’s Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrnAb5KKg47gsiyfDxo-JJg

Subscribe in iTunes (and please rate us!): https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/home-shop-machinists-podcast/id1180854521

Max’s website: The Joy of Precision and also his Youtube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdMt_havo3BxZJscvRCOGcw

Justin’s Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/thecogwheel

 

 

Home Shop Machinists Podcast – Episode 3 – 10 Tools

If you are depressed about what is in the news just listen to this podcast and you won’t have a chance to listen to the news again! In the longest episode to date Max and Justin talk about 10 tools that we find essential to our shops. Buried within this episode:

  • As usual Justin forgets to edit something out that Max says
  • Max tells us more about his Trent Pinion Mill that arrived from the UK via some sort of beaming machine
  • Gearotic and Max’s Orrery build (say that without sounding intoxicated!)
  • Why the Brits put the carriage wheel on the right side of the carriage
  • Maintenance on cars, 3D printers, and terrible instructions
  • Max tells a joke
  • Fecal material on cell phone screens
  • The 10 tools in the shop that we find useful … which turned out to be 8
  • Plus a whole lot more punishment.

Some pictures of what we talked about:

Max’s Tiny Albrecht Drill Chuck:

albrecht_small_chuck The Brown and Sharp Cut Knurl Tool:

bs_cut_knurler

Links in this episode:

You can listen to the episode directly here:

or you can download it directly.

Subscribe in iTunes (and please rate us!): https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/home-shop-machinists-podcast/id1180854521

Max’s website: The Joy of Precision and also his Youtube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdMt_havo3BxZJscvRCOGcw

Justin’s Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/thecogwheel

Stay tuned for the next episode – it shouldn’t be too far away!

Home Shop Machinists Podcast – Episode 2 – Über Machinist

It’s been more than a month since our last episode where we said we would try to record an episode 2 times a month.  To make up for it we snagged Stefan Gotteswinter for an interview.  Thankfully he hung around long enough to answer our questions and didn’t seem to be too put off by our antics.  In this episode

  • Stefan is looking at Onshape.
  • Max geeks out over Wine for Linux (sorry) and thinks you can easily run Autodesk’s Fusion in Linux.
  • Max gets a Hemingway kit, the Trent Pinion Mill, and now he has to machine it!
  • Chinese machine tools really are not that good, but are great for home shop machinists!
  • Stefan suggests to think of most imported machine tools as casting kits.
  • How to get banned in less than 5 minutes on Practical Machinist.
  • Germans have a lot of home shop machinists, who mostly use CNC.  Germans and their tech!
  • Stefan uses carbide in the shop.  We’ll make him listen to our first episode again before we invite him back on.
  • Stefan would be happy on a desert island with a Deckel FP1… and all the accessories.  Who wouldn’t?
  • Max happens to think German is an eloquent language.
  • How could you interview a German and not ask about beer?

Plus a whole lot more.  We managed to trim 10 minutes off this time to get our 1 hour podcast down in 1 hour and 20 minutes!

You can listen to the episode directly here:

or you can download it directly.

Subscribe in iTunes (and please rate us!): https://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/home-shop-machinists-podcast/id1180854521

Stefan’s website: http://gtwr.de/index.html.  and his Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/syyl

Onshape: https://www.onshape.com/

Max’s Hemingway kit: http://www.hemingwaykits.com/acatalog/Trent_Pinion_Mill.html

Max’s website: The Joy of Precision and also his Youtube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdMt_havo3BxZJscvRCOGcw

Justin’s Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4qMguQuG7N4CFwOP1jyo4A