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New Import (cheap) Dro For The Traytop

Discussion in 'METROLOGY - MEASURE, SETUP & FIT' started by Holescreek, Sep 23, 2016.

  1. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    Finally decided to get a cheap 2 axis DRO for the Traytop. $220 shipped from Hong Kong with my choice of scale length.

    Two things are surprising to me: First the price included shipping, how the heck do they ship so cheap from China? It costs $35 to ship a small USPS flat rate box to Finland. The Chinese government has to be financing all the free shipping. Second, The company literally dropped the packages off at DHL on the 19th and it arrived at my door (this morning) the 21st.

    traytopdro1_zpsf2hhpjxk.jpg

    I ordered the scales a little long so I could adjust the lengths to fit on my machine. Better too long than too short! My cross slide was the primary concern. After checking out my very limited mounting options for the cross slide I cut the scale down to mount. I removed the end cap to get a view of how the glass was held in position. Some scales are glued in with silicone, this one had rubber spacers pushed into a channel and held in place with super glue.

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    So I slid the reader head and removed the yellow guards by sliding them out of the housing being careful to not loose any springs or rollers that ride in the internal channel.

    20160921_123507_zpsaonqjqbd.jpg

    Then I band sawed around the casing as close to the glass as I could get then snapped the aluminum away from the scale.

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    I snapped the scale off with a pair of pliers far enough inside the housing for the end cap to fit back on then set the scale up in the mill to square the housing back up for the end cap to fit back on.

    20160921_125019_zpsaioii3zv.jpg

    Then I tapped the mounting holes in the end of the housing and put it all back together.
     
  2. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    I mounted the Y axis today since I didn't have to move the machine to do it, gonna be a PITA to slide a ton of iron away from the wall for the X axis install tomorrow.

    traytopdro2_zpstctgc3m2.jpg

    The manual is written by the worst Chinese-english translator ever and I can't figure out how to set the radius/diameter function because all the on-screen instructions are in Chinese as well. I sent the Ebay seller a question hoping they can figure out who to contact or at least tell me what buttons to push. If I was putting it on a mill where I was going to be using all the other functions I'd be upset but for a lathe it'll be nice to just have readouts match my handwheels. I almost have a splash shield for the cross slide scale made, it's very tight because the compound is barely elevated from the top of the apron. The scale is just under .8" wide and I had to lay it on it's side to make it fit.

    I stumbled on how to flip the +/- direction of the scaled by pressing the radius/diameter button and pressing the up/down arrow keys but unfortunately the button did not double the readout to show diameter.
     
    davidh, BGHansen, JimDawson and 2 others like this.
  3. rrjohnso2000

    rrjohnso2000 United States H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Yes, the Chinese government is supporting trade with cash for businesss.

    Nice write up. Thanks for taking the time
     
  4. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    I'm kind of hoping someone else here has already installed one on a lathe and figured out the radus/diameter setting. Googling the company and the model number just brings up sale ads.

    On this model the little yellow "S" by the model number is supposed to be the rad/dia button. Pressing it brings up two lines of Chinese writing that the translator on my phone says to push the up and down arrow buttons. Doing so just changes the direction of the scales +/-.
     
    bobl likes this.
  5. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    Got the X scale mounted on a pair of standoffs then checked the scale with an indicator for parallelism to the bed and taper from end to end. Since the scale is mounted to the cast surface I ended up putting a .05" shim under one end to even it up.

    20160924_155505_zpswfc5kddd.jpg

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    With the scale done I needed to get the DRO mounted. I wanted it on the headstock but didn't want to drill holes that would potentially allow iron chips to drop into the freshly changed oil. I removed two of the screws that hold the top cover down and made a mount that used the existing screw holes.

    20160924_183119_zpsywdq3kor.jpg

    Then mounted the cross slide scale cover:

    20160924_192211_zpsbdssrpsg.jpg

    DSCF7586_zpsyrvfmcij.jpg
     
    BGHansen and rdean like this.
  6. wawoodman

    wawoodman himself, himself H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Nice job!
     
    davidh likes this.
  7. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    I installed a Meister Top 10 on my first Bridgeport about 14 years ago and it's worked flawlessly. IIRC it was cheap back in it's day at $480 shipped from Hong Kong. The instruction manual was very well translated though. If I can ever get the DRO instructions interpreted I won't hesitate to buy another cheap DRO for my Clausing.

    I contacted the Ebay seller and they asked me to send photos of the on-screen commands that they can forward to the factory to try to figure out what's going on. Could get interesting if there is any follow through.
     
  8. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    Got my reply back on how to set the diameter. Evidently you alter the scale counts inside the unit, changing them from 5 micron to 10 micron:

    1 Please press "S" , find "高级用户设置" enter the pass word"3211"
    2 please find "设置X轴线性误差补偿", set "10um"
     
  9. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    I attempted to carry out the instructions above with no luck. Pressing "S" and then the up/down arrows scrolls you through several screens and I eventually found the one for the password and entered it. I also found the screen with the characters in line 2 and it displayed the current scale parameters as .005 for 5um but I was unable to discover how to change the Y axis scale to .01 or 10um.

    Maybe I'll try it again later on but for now I think I'll leave it set as it is in radius. The scales and readout are pretty well made given the price point but the manual being poorly translated makes it's usefulness questionable as far as most of the features goes. Again, on a lathe it's not all that important but on a mill where bolt circles and other canned programs might come into play it's doubtful that an operator could make them work.

    All in all for the price and quality of construction I will probably buy another unit for my larger Clausing lathe.
     
  10. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    Success! Between the instruction above and the section in the manual for "Senior Users" (advanced users?) I was able to figure out how to change the settings. Now I have diameter readout on the cross slide.
     
  11. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    The minor issue of language didn't run me off from the product, I bought a second one for my Clausing lathe. This time I specified that the DRO be in English and the seller happily agreed. There was about a week delay because the seller took a vacation but upon his return I received the DHL shipment 3 days later. This time I bought the longest scale, the 1000mm for the X and a 350 for the Y.

    I decided to leave the scale long and mount the reader head on the back side of the carriage so I could run the cutter way past center:

    20161015_184830_zpsnw643ndy.jpg

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    Last edited: Oct 20, 2016
  12. tweinke

    tweinke United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Looking good! I assume the quality seems good which inspires this question, did you end up having to pay customs duties or anything? Ive been a bit afraid of that because who knows what magic someone would dream up.
     
  13. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    The Ebay price was $220 shipped, that's all I paid for each DRO. Now I'm contemplating a 3 axis for my other Bridgeport.
     
  14. Holescreek

    Holescreek Active User Active Member

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    To end my "Cheap DRO" thread I finished off the tailstock with a hacked up old digital caliper. This is the reason I never throw away damaged gauges, they (or at least their parts) can usually find new life.

    20161020_132308_zps0zjgmmaq.jpg

    20161020_132328_zpsj6wlkjvz.jpg
     

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