Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Bob Eckstein's Taig Lathe

Bob Eckstein sent in these pics of his lathe:

It took a bit longer than I had expected, but the Taig lathe is now a going concern.

The tailstock as delivered was a collection of sharp jagged edges. Judicious use of a fine file cleaned up the extrusions and made it a lot more pleasant to deal with. The motion of the ram was somewhat rough and uneven but a session with lapping compound took care of it. The handle is made of layers of CORIAN plastic laminated with epoxy and carved to shape. The knobs are from the hardware store, 10-32 thread. The chuck is a Craftsman keyless 3/8"

I didn't have a boring bar to use in truing the lathe jaws, and a carbide lathe bit made a real mess of it, so I took a cylindrical solid carbide milling cutter and placed it in the drilling tailstock. I closed the chuck very gently until there was the slightest contact and turned it slowly by hand, then tightened it a little more and continued until the jaws had been cleaned up. The milling cutter was small enough that I could run it to the back of the jaws and avoid having to remove them to file off the "lip". The whole process went very quickly. There is still a little run-out but far less than what the chuck had as delivered.

The motor is a 46 volt DC unit. Power supply is a 5 amp Variac with a full-wave rectifier. The motor has a 1/4" shaft and I found the perfect adapter to use the 1/2" pulley: It's a chuck sleeve for Hitachi routers to use 1/4" bits in a 1/2" router chuck. The Hitachi part number is 956-927Z, Model TR-12.


The little clamp is used to lock the handwheel on the carriage so you don't have to hold it to use the power feed. By the way, the power feed advances the carriage approximately .003 per revolution of the input pulley.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Milling The Rack Channel Off the Taig Lathe Bed

I wanted to see how hard it was to remove the rack channel from the bed for those who don't want to flip the bed around when retrofitting the new lathe power feed.

The channel.

I wanted to see if it could be sawn off easily using a hacksaw blade (without a frame, as the rack channel is too long). Short answer is that it would take you a very long time.

The bed set up on the mill.

I was able to mill almost the whole channel off in one pass.

Then I had to re-clamp to get the last little bit.

All gone.

Enough clearance for the lead screw coupling.

And the screw.

So if you have a mill it's doable. Without a mill you are probably better off just flipping the bed 180 and living with the foot at the other end.

Monday, March 15, 2010

New Pictures

Some new pictures sent in by Lew Bishop, Lou Somers, Michael Paznar and Norman Crowson.

Lew Bishop writes, "Finished a milling attachment similar to the one made by Dean Williams and now need to get a set of collets to avoid the jaws of the chuck (which seem to be attracted to my fingers). I think that using the stock Taig units at this time will work just fine as the range of size is OK . I'm enclosing the pics of the attachment to show my interpretation of Deans fixture. I actually got the attachment to work and immediately realized that rigidity is the mother of milling - had to add additional bolts to the T-slots - total four - rather than the two that fit the holes in the angle plate. "

Lou Somers:

I used a 100 tooth blade as an index for graduating lead screw dial. As a detent I used a block of aluminum set against the motor pulley to hold it square and simply moved it back and forth as I rotated the blade to the next tooth. Worked great. All re cuts were dead on.

I set the carriage stop at .125 and cut all 100 divisions, each one being .0005. I then reset the stop at .250 and recut every other division, each being .001. I then reset the stop at .375 and recut every tenth division, each being .005. Finally I removed the stop and made a full cut at every twentith division, each being .010.

I find this dial much easier to use than the one on the Taig carriage. As you can see there is no cursor on it. I graduated it simply as an exercise to see if I could do it. When nessecary I use an indicator on the carriage.

boring bar holder

This may or may not be news to anyone but if you should break or wear out a short belt snatch one of your wife's elastic hair ties. They're not a perfect solution but if you take light cuts they can help keep a project moving till you get a new belt.

For reverse twist to figure 8.

Michael Paznar:

drilling a "prop saver for my little rc airplane"

"I should mention I modelled mine after the black one on the left."

"the prop saver is the first thing I have machined, it involved mostly using my taig lathe but also my sherline 5400 mill to drill and tap the holes.soon this will be on my GWS slow stick."

Norman Crowson:

Thought you might enjoy seeing a tiny brass gear made on my Taig mill... used a rotary table plus a gear cutting wheel to tooth a gear blank I turned on my atlas lathe using a microscope and DI.The brass gear replaces the delrin gears (black in the photo) that go on my Bachmann Climax HO Locomotive... the delrin gears are splitting on their axles.One gear down and 11 to go to finish the project. More details are available by email to any that might have an interest.

a tiny universal joint or "swivel" made on the Taig mill and atlas lathe for Bachman Shay and Climax locomotives ...

Thanks Guys!