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Hafco AL900A lathe, is anyone able to identify what it really is?

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dgrev

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Barry,

Indeed it is, I am being patient.........................
Points about **** noted.
Curiously I have just been exchanging emails with a Hong Kong supplier regarding an electronic part. I had 2 choices, them for AU$21 postage included (dear little sucker) or US seller US$15 plus US$219 postage (I kid you not) via **** Global Shipping. I have encountered this before and it is a consolidator contractor where everything gets sent to a central warehouse, unpacked, shoved in an air container and despatched - when full - which delays things.
Then unpacked at destination country, repacked and posted. They lost a water pump on me a while back, the address probably did not get assigned during the unpack/pack/repack fiasco.
Chinese supplier quoted 22 to 30 BUSINESS days delivery, so they did warn me. But those are the only 2 suppliers I can locate
anywhere for that item. So went ahead thinking they were just being very pessimistic.
They provided a tracking number, so I have been watching it and it spent 6 days being packed! Far out, how can popping something the size of my thumb nail into an envelope take 6 days to pack???
I have upped them about it today and they are very worried I will give them bad feedback. I have told them I don't do the extortion feedback thing like you see so often on Tripwhinger and those other travel sites, I just want to know why it takes them 30 days from China and everyone else 5 to 12 days.
They have just told me it is out of their hands and is a registered requirement of ****. Something to do with the **** "Global Shipping". Groan, not that again.......
So, the point of all this, be thankful for the sellers who somehow have avoided GS and can use normal postage.
In the mean time, I have a large heavy device in pieces on my bench waiting for the **** slow junk from China to arrive.

Providing all goes to plan tomorrow, I can get the lathe, not looking forward to the experience of transporting it in a 6 x 4 trailer ratchet strapped but still on its stand so very high centre of gravity......
Then use lengths of pipe as rollers and travel it from under the strong back in my shed the 15 odd metres to its home spot.
Then to level it.
Then to clean it.
A good distraction from not being able to progress with the project on my bench
 

Downunder Bob

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G'day Doug, sorry for delay, took a a new pic but having trouble loading into computer. managed to take pic from the other day and enlarge it. I hope this is clear and legible.

Yes Doug I'm in Adelaide and I'm happy to help where I can. I've got to say that materials supply here is not brilliant, You've probably heard we've shut down almost all our manufacturing. But I've learned to scrounge. Surely you have a steel merchant in the Hill, some will sell you offcuts and bar ends cheap, they may also sell other types of metal. I'd avoid Bl'ods like the plague, way too expensive. Where do you get your welding supplies from, they may be able to help.

Do you know any of the machinists that work in or for the mines they'll know. Ask the local scrap metal recyclers, some will sell to you, some won't.

Look around for a heavy fabrication shop they will sometimes let your forage in their scrap bins. I've found one close to me here that for a slab of beer a year I can forage in his bins whenever I want, I have picked up some amazing finds, some really big chunks of steel.

Brass, CI and ally are harder to come by. also look for small private machine shops they will often help out. What materials are you actually looking for? Ask them for bar ends that they are going to throw out.

Another good source for high tensile steel shafting is car and truck repair shops, ask for old axles these are awsome steel, you'll need carbide tips to cut them. I found a guy here that makes band saw blades he made me a HSS blade for my little 5 x 5 band saw it cuts these shafts very well.

What are the holders you have for carbide inserts, if you can identify them its easy to buy inserts and HSS tool bits online, you just have to know the style and size. Are the makers numbers on the holders you have still readable if so post a photo. One place here in Adelaide is General tools at Cavan do have a range of HSS tools.

DSCN8095.JPG


DSCN8095 (2).JPG
 

Downunder Bob

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Doug I've found eBay rather infuriating sometimes many of their suppliers will not post to PO boxes in Aust. and its probably something to do with the consolidated shipping. lately I've been buying from Banggood and Kogan The quality of the chinese made stuff is still very variable but I can't fault the shipping if they say 21 days its usually within 10%. Also you are only dealing with one seller and that is Banggood. there is no middleman like ebay.
 

Mitch Alsup

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Chinese supplier quoted 22 to 30 BUSINESS days delivery, so they did warn me. But those are the only 2 suppliers I can locate
anywhere for that item. So went ahead thinking they were just being very pessimistic.
They provided a tracking number, so I have been watching it and it spent 6 days being packed! Far out, how can popping something the size of my thumb nail into an envelope take 6 days to pack???
Day 1, accept your e-mail in some random city; create warehouse order form and transmit.
Day 2, order for arrives at warehouse and is placed at the end of the current work list
Day 3, still on to do list
Day 4, finder-worker assigned, goes through 20 acre warehouse looking for obscure part, finally finds part near end of day
Day 5, found part waits for packager-worker
Day 6, package worker packages part and drops it in the post.
 

dgrev

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Bob

Picture is now very clear thanks.

Mines, very different situation these days. Effectively you can't even buy stuff off them, way too much paperwork.

The fabrication place does mostly the heavy stuff, building up bucket teeth, welding railway wagons, RSJs etc. Not anything that is turned on a lathe.

Good point about mechanics. I had thought axle steel would be just too hard to be practical.

See pic of holders, hopefully there are markings under the dust and fluff.

Regards
Doug

G'day Doug, sorry for delay, took a a new pic but having trouble loading into computer. managed to take pic from the other day and enlarge it. I hope this is clear and legible.

Yes Doug I'm in Adelaide and I'm happy to help where I can. I've got to say that materials supply here is not brilliant, You've probably heard we've shut down almost all our manufacturing. But I've learned to scrounge. Surely you have a steel merchant in the Hill, some will sell you offcuts and bar ends cheap, they may also sell other types of metal. I'd avoid Bl'ods like the plague, way too expensive. Where do you get your welding supplies from, they may be able to help.

Do you know any of the machinists that work in or for the mines they'll know. Ask the local scrap metal recyclers, some will sell to you, some won't.

Look around for a heavy fabrication shop they will sometimes let your forage in their scrap bins. I've found one close to me here that for a slab of beer a year I can forage in his bins whenever I want, I have picked up some amazing finds, some really big chunks of steel.

Brass, CI and ally are harder to come by. also look for small private machine shops they will often help out. What materials are you actually looking for? Ask them for bar ends that they are going to throw out.

Another good source for high tensile steel shafting is car and truck repair shops, ask for old axles these are awsome steel, you'll need carbide tips to cut them. I found a guy here that makes band saw blades he made me a HSS blade for my little 5 x 5 band saw it cuts these shafts very well.

What are the holders you have for carbide inserts, if you can identify them its easy to buy inserts and HSS tool bits online, you just have to know the style and size. Are the makers numbers on the holders you have still readable if so post a photo. One place here in Adelaide is General tools at Cavan do have a range of HSS tools.
20180606_164137.jpg


20180606_164155.jpg
 

dgrev

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Mitch

That is as good an explanation as any, sounds feasible to me.

Regards
Doug

Day 1, accept your e-mail in some random city; create warehouse order form and transmit.
Day 2, order for arrives at warehouse and is placed at the end of the current work list
Day 3, still on to do list
Day 4, finder-worker assigned, goes through 20 acre warehouse looking for obscure part, finally finds part near end of day
Day 5, found part waits for packager-worker
Day 6, package worker packages part and drops it in the post.
 

dgrev

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Bob

Never heard of Banggood, will check them out.

Son had a phone issue with other company you mention, a warranty claim is frustrating but eventually happened. Main problem is that they make it impossible to phone them, so everything has to be via email and when they answer.

Regards
Doug

Doug I've found eBay rather infuriating sometimes many of their suppliers will not post to PO boxes in Aust. and its probably something to do with the consolidated shipping. lately I've been buying from Banggood and Kogan The quality of the chinese made stuff is still very variable but I can't fault the shipping if they say 21 days its usually within 10%. Also you are only dealing with one seller and that is Banggood. there is no middleman like ebay.
 

dgrev

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Good news, the lathe is now mine and is in my shed. Still sitting in the trailer, so still to unload.

It came with 4 micrometers, 2 in cases, small and medium. Also 2 smalls, which are unloved, gunked up and lying in the bottom of the drill
bit box.

Now for a stupid question, the oil level is at the bottom of the LHS sight glass, where do I put more in?

For those who would like to see it, attached a photo of the head gears and pulleys.

Would anyone have a threading data plate that even if it doesn't have the same appearance as mine, has the same data?
Bob kindly took a photo of his for me, but when comparing it to mine, the data is different.
As you will see below, parts of the data are not readable.

.
20180615_160911a.jpg
20180615_160924a.jpg
20180615_160929a.jpg
20180606_163920a.jpg
20180606_164125a.jpg
20180606_164155a.jpg
20180606_164137a.jpg
 

Downunder Bob

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Doug, Not sure which sight glass you are referring too. I don't see any sight glass in your pics. Obviously not on the headstock as you've got belts in there. mine is a geared headstock and the sight glass is under the chuck. there is another one on the saddle, but where is yours.

The two small gunked up unloved micrometers are they good brand names, if so they will probably clean up ok, just don't use anything corrosive, that bottle of domestos in your pics is a worry. I'd soak them in INOX similar to WD40 only much better IMHO. or similar. then dismantle and clean.

The "T" type bore hole gauges look ok just a basic clean and put away somewhere clean and safe. All the drill bits can be cleaned up and sharpened and put in a safe place.

Not sure what you mean when you say my thread chart is different to yours. The imperial one is identical, the metric side of yours is too hard to read will need a better photo. The only two numbers I can read are the same, and I bet the rest are as well.

The gears, belts and pulleys all look to be in fairly good condition I think overall you're in luck, especially if the price is right.
 

dgrev

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Bob
1) There are 2 sight glasses on the front of the headstock either side of the name plate. See photo.
20180613_114057.jpg

2) One of the mics is Mitutoyo, which IIRC was a good Jap brand in its day. Bottle of domestos is in photo taken at previous owner's shed, it did not come with the lathe. ;-) INOX I need to look up, never heard of it.

3) Drill bits have a coating of light rust. I will need to go over them with say 600 wet and dry. Hopefully this won't affect retention powers of morse taper?

4) Have found a really good image of what appears to be the full thread chart in a PL-300 CZ1237 manual I downloaded from somewhere. So ignore this question please.

5) The price. I will PM you that. My logic was the following. One of those Port Adelaide landed-on-the-dock lathes costs about $1700, with a bore of IIRC 20 or 25mm and a minimal tool set. You do get a 4 jaw and steady rest etc.
Such things as T bore gauges, morse taper bits, boring bars etc are all add ons to the above, but included with this lathe.
But what really settled me on this lathe was that it has a spindle bore of somewhere around 36 to 38mm (I have yet to properly measure it). As far as I know, a new lathe of this capability would be in the 5 grand price range.
This lathe appears to have done little work, but unloved, so a + and a - in the same sentence.
Added to that, it was in town. Cost to get something like this shipped to BH from ADL, which spans 2 pallet spaces would be at least $300 with all the attendant trucky risks.
 

Downunder Bob

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Ah the two round black things, now I see it the LH one is only half black. are they for the headstock bearings? Don't know where the filling point is.

Are they really as black as they look, oil might need draining and flushing, Not surprising it's probably pretty old. should be a small screw possibly SH grub screw where the bottom of the bearing housing would be,and a similar screw at the top.

Mitutoyo is / was a very good brand, give it a good soak and carefully take apart, have you ever taken a mic appart? clean, re-assemble and adjust should be good for a long time.

The drill bits likewise just soak them and clean and sharpen. the newly sharp cutting edge is the only critical part. I'd go easy on the wet and dry, it will remove metal. Try a tooth brush and a plastic scourer, won't remove any metal. The MT should be fine as long as you remove any soft rust and gunk, a few pit holes won't change anything. as long as they fit snug in the pockets they'll be fine.

If the new thread chart fits, go for it.

You've got a lot of stuff, just needs cleaning and sorting, find a cabinet to store it all in as you go. all you need is some cutting tools You don't have any HSS or carbide tips. As soon as you identify those tip holders you can order some inserts, You should probably also get some HSS toolbits, and a holder if you don't have one 5'16" is probably a good size. have a look at The Diamond Tool holder at https://www.eccentricengineering.com.au Also for most tools try General Tools, the're at Cavan, I was out there today picking up a few bits. https://generaltools.com.au/ I believe they have a new online ordering system only been up and running a couple of weeks.
 

Downunder Bob

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Another source of cheap steel and it is round, sort of. The round pins that are used as hinge pins on excavator buckets. have to be replaced regularly as they wear out quite quickly. good strong steel, but not really hard like axles.
 

pdentrem

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In your photo you should notice the small holes at the top of the bearing bosses, this is where you add ISO 68 spindle oil and fill the sight glasses to half full. I would open the drain plugs, which I don’t see in any of your photos. So carefully pull the sight glasses straight out and watch for the o-ring! The oil will fall onto you toes for that extra special shiny nail finish. Once drained reinstall the glasses and top up again. Who know what is in those bearings today. May want to flush a couple times. They use only a couple ounces per bearing on average.

I circled the one I can see in your photo.
04350F38-1EA1-42E0-AD26-71CB24FAC068.jpeg
 

Downunder Bob

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Inox. Google it. should be 3 or 4 places in the hill that sell it. I get the 5lt bottle and have a couple of squirt guns around the place use it on everything. replace WD40 CRC etc with it over 25 years ago.
 

dgrev

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Everyone, thanks for your replies, for some reason I did not get the email telling me that this topic had new content, so will address each reply.
 

dgrev

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Bob

1) No, that is just a photo lighting issue. RHS glass is full to the top line, nice coloured oil. LHS has just a bit of oil at bottom of glass, suspect reservoir is actually empty.

2) Mitutoyo mic lives to fight another day, cleaned up nicely with one small rust area on the 0.1, 0.2 graduations, can be read ok but just have to
be wary.
Other mic was a Moore. G has surface rust, but mic part is ok. Was 1 thou over reading and could not get it to O. In the end decided that the G was slightly sprung so resorted to banging it on vice - gently (I can see all of you cringing). After about 15 increasingly heavier bangs it zeroed nicely and passed repeated tests.
Both are 0 to 1" versions.
Then there is a boxed Chinese 0 to 1" and a boxed Chinese 0 to 2", both good as new, just Chinese though.

3) No screw at top, just a hole. I think I will put some flip top oilers in the holes to keep dust and grime out.

4) Points noted thanks.

5) A project will be to make a new plate. The old one is beyond hope. I have found that there is a clear sticker material that printers use. You do whatever graphics and print out on paper, then photostat that to clear material and stick to alloy, then another layer of clear over the top. Unless someone tells you, nobody notices that they are not originals. Advantage is if they get damaged, just peel and apply another lot.
The previous owner had a bad habit of hanging chuck key on thread selector handles, that is what did all the damage.

6) Update, I have found both 1/4 and probably 3/8 HSS tool bits of varying lengths at bottom of drill tray. So bonus!
I seem to have somewhere around 15 to 20 morse taper bits, unloved, but ok after a clean. So BIG bonus!
Several hooked HSS boring bars, look to be 5/16" stock.
Some carbide triangles, but nearly all have chipped points so am assuming they are now useless?

Jumping to conclusions here, but included was a spray can of Treflex cutting oil. It seems that this was used with most of the drill bits and is both the reason that they were filthy and the reason that they were not rusty.
Likewise the slide ways on the lathe.

Been doing a lot of cleaning this arvo.

7) Thanks for links.

Regards
Doug

Ah the two round black things, now I see it the LH one is only half black. are they for the headstock bearings? Don't know where the filling point is.

Are they really as black as they look, oil might need draining and flushing, Not surprising it's probably pretty old. should be a small screw possibly SH grub screw where the bottom of the bearing housing would be,and a similar screw at the top.

Mitutoyo is / was a very good brand, give it a good soak and carefully take apart, have you ever taken a mic appart? clean, re-assemble and adjust should be good for a long time.

The drill bits likewise just soak them and clean and sharpen. the newly sharp cutting edge is the only critical part. I'd go easy on the wet and dry, it will remove metal. Try a tooth brush and a plastic scourer, won't remove any metal. The MT should be fine as long as you remove any soft rust and gunk, a few pit holes won't change anything. as long as they fit snug in the pockets they'll be fine.

If the new thread chart fits, go for it.

You've got a lot of stuff, just needs cleaning and sorting, find a cabinet to store it all in as you go. all you need is some cutting tools You don't have any HSS or carbide tips. As soon as you identify those tip holders you can order some inserts, You should probably also get some HSS toolbits, and a holder if you don't have one 5'16" is probably a good size. have a look at The Diamond Tool holder at https://www.eccentricengineering.com.au Also for most tools try General Tools, the're at Cavan, I was out there today picking up a few bits. https://generaltools.com.au/ I believe they have a new online ordering system only been up and running a couple of weeks.
20180616_162552.jpg
 

dgrev

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Bob, thanks. Not something I am around, but worth keeping in mind, you don't know till you ask!

Another source of cheap steel and it is round, sort of. The round pins that are used as hinge pins on excavator buckets. have to be replaced regularly as they wear out quite quickly. good strong steel, but not really hard like axles.
 

dgrev

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Mate (don't know you name), thanks for the info. I will fit flip top oilers to those holes. Having them open just does not sit with me, especially considering how much gunk is in that area in my lathe. I suspected they may be the filler points as nothing else appeared to be. So have cleaned the holes out best I can - you have confirmed it now.
You say ISO 68, some of the manuals I have downloaded (doing the many manuals, bit of relevant info from each - trick) say ISO 20 others say ISO 32
and so it goes on. Really confused now?
I have heaps of Dexron II, but suspect it is not yellow metal safe or perhaps solder (babbit) safe. So will need to get hydraulic oil once I know which
ISO?
I will do the multi flush as you suggest.

Regards
Doug

In your photo you should notice the small holes at the top of the bearing bosses, this is where you add ISO 68 spindle oil and fill the sight glasses to half full. I would open the drain plugs, which I don’t see in any of your photos. So carefully pull the sight glasses straight out and watch for the o-ring! The oil will fall onto you toes for that extra special shiny nail finish. Once drained reinstall the glasses and top up again. Who know what is in those bearings today. May want to flush a couple times. They use only a couple ounces per bearing on average.

I circled the one I can see in your photo.
View attachment 269798
 

dgrev

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Next question. On top of apron/carriage there is an oil filler plug, very nicely marked "Oil". But no sight glass and no obvious drain plug.

So how do I know how much oil to put in there?

None of the manuals mention quantity.

Providing I can find a drain point I will multi flush that too.
======
Oh, other success was a magnetic base dial indicator. I was sure from the last time I was around lathes (about 3 decades ago) that they were spring loaded to give a dynamic run out reading. This thing was quite firm and stayed where ever I pushed it to. Hmmmm. Gave it a liberal dose of WD-40 (no INOX yet) and got it working. Chuffed!
It does however want to rest at 20 thou before zero and is at full travel 20 thou after 1". Is that normal?
20180616_162331.jpg
 
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dgrev

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A quick change too post has been retrofitted at some point. Seems to be a mixed blessing. There is a through hole with a counter bore at the top, whatever that is for?
There is no indexing, but I did retrieve a spring out of a hole in the cross slide, but no ball. :-(
So went in search and found the original tool head. It has 4 nice index slots.
I think I feel a need to upgrade the quick change head to 4 index bores and reinstate the missing ball.
20180616_150441a.jpg
20180616_150457a.jpg
 

pdentrem

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There originally had been a round pin with an angled top to stop the tool post from turning clockwise. Easily made up piece. I am on the road for the next few days so I cannot take any photos of it.

Lube oil suggested is usually something like Mobil DTE Heavy/Medium.

As for the apron oil filler. Are there any oil points on the apron other than that one? It maybe a single point reservoir to lube all points on the apron while mine has like a half dozen individual points to lube. My apron lower section has no sump for the gears, so I have to spray in lube oil and watch it run out afterwards.
Pierre
 

dgrev

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Pierre - could not get it through Scribd, I used the free trial a few months back and it has expired. But got it under the actual name of PL-300 from another site. Thanks Doug.

For anyone with an Enco lathe of other version, go here: <http://enco-lathe-manuals.blogspot.com/p/lathe-manual-downloads.html>

Update: I found the Enco manual at another site and it has different content to the PL-300 version, no download restriction:
<https://123slide.org/everything-is-okay.html?utm_source=enco-manual-110-2034>
 
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Downunder Bob

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Next question. On top of apron/carriage there is an oil filler plug, very nicely marked "Oil". But no sight glass and no obvious drain plug.

So how do I know how much oil to put in there?

None of the manuals mention quantity.

Providing I can find a drain point I will multi flush that too.
======
Oh, other success was a magnetic base dial indicator. I was sure from the last time I was around lathes (about 3 decades ago) that they were spring loaded to give a dynamic run out reading. This thing was quite firm and stayed where ever I pushed it to. Hmmmm. Gave it a liberal dose of WD-40 (no INOX yet) and got it working. Chuffed!
It does however want to rest at 20 thou before zero and is at full travel 20 thou after 1". Is that normal?View attachment 269808
Doug that oil hole under the cap is either a small cup with some pipe cleaner wick type oil carriers to various parts under the saddle or it fills a little reservoir that one of the gear wheels under there dips into and then spreads it around. mine does that but does have a little sight glass on the front of saddle. Open it and see what it looks like. or just pour 1/4 cup of oil in and see what come out. if nothing comes out pour a bit more in until it comes out then you'll know it's full.

In the photo immediately under the oil cap see that little ball oiler on the hand wheel use a pump type oil can to put a couple of squirts in there, and any others you see like it.
 

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Bob, thanks. Will do. Need to go buy some oil tomorrow morning. There is a car place that is open 7 days that has Penrite, hopefully they have some hydraulic oil. Regards Doug
 

Downunder Bob

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A quick change too post has been retrofitted at some point. Seems to be a mixed blessing. There is a through hole with a counter bore at the top, whatever that is for?
There is no indexing, but I did retrieve a spring out of a hole in the cross slide, but no ball. :-(
So went in search and found the original tool head. It has 4 nice index slots.
I think I feel a need to upgrade the quick change head to 4 index bores and reinstate the missing ball.View attachment 269809View attachment 269810
That QCTP looks to be the same make as the one I got with my lathe although mine is 3 sided not two. It's an Italian brand very good quality. Although the tool holders are very expensive so if you need to get more it's a pain. OK if you have enough. Looks like your previous owner did away with the detent pin same as me I think they are a pain. ok with the older 4 sided posts but just get in the way with QCTP.

Because of the cost I have upgraded to an Aloris BXA. The cost of a new post genuine from USA Aloris with 4 holders was less than two new holders for the italian one.
 

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There are 2 holders on the post that you can see plus another 2, 1 of which is missing the long grub screw.
I need to have a play with it to see how the cam action gadgets on the top work.
 

Downunder Bob

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Bob, thanks. Will do. Need to go buy some oil tomorrow morning. There is a car place that is open 7 days that has Penrite, hopefully they have some hydraulic oil. Regards Doug

Have fun shopping see if they have Inox. Not sure that it has to be hydraulic just straight oil without additives SAE 20 will be fine.
 

Downunder Bob

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There are 2 holders on the post that you can see plus another 2, 1 of which is missing the long grub screw.
I need to have a play with it to see how the cam action gadgets on the top work.
They're an odd type of post but very well made and super accurate I just can't think of the name and it's to cold to go out in the garage now, does yours have a name on it, should be on the top. the big trap is there are a few similar looking ones all made in europe but they are not all interchangeable.
 

Downunder Bob

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There are 2 holders on the post that you can see plus another 2, 1 of which is missing the long grub screw.
I need to have a play with it to see how the cam action gadgets on the top work.
They are fairly easy to understand once you star playing with them. In some ways I like them better than the Aloris, and I'll keep mine and use it it's pretty simple to change between i've modified my set up so I can quickly change from one post to the other, all three, each one does have an advantage. I'm just not paying the exorbitant price for sopare tool holders.
 
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