Thinking about getting a Dividing headset (chuck for a mill) - any advice

Spotshooter

Registered
Registered
Joined
Dec 28, 2018
Messages
57
The title pretty much says it...

PM has a couple that are on sale, and I would like to be able to meter cuts and drilling holes on circular stock.

A bonus would be one day adding a CNC so I could cut spirals.. that that’s way beyond what I’m thinking right now.

Thoughts ?
 

parshal

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2016
Messages
196
I bought a Super Indexer from PM when I got my 833 a couple months ago. You may check to see if they received a shipment of those, too. I'd give them a call and see what they may have that's not on the website.
 

Bi11Hudson

Artificer00
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2017
Messages
642
Advice is an opinion and opinions are like a$$70!2$, everybody has one and most of them smell pretty bad. So, I won't advise, just tell about what I have set up. What works for me. . .

First off, I do small work, largely model building. I have two(2) rotary tables, one with a fraction plate in place for dividing. Small, 4 or 5 inch in diameter. Worm ratios at 90:1, I think, may be 72:1.

One has a 3" chuck mounted to the plate that is removable and interchangable from one to the other. I use a 3 jaw chuck for the 6X12 Japanese lathe that bolts to a hub on the spindle. I cut a groove around the back part of the chuck and made clamps to fasten it to the table.

It's a PITA to set up, but doable. The center of the tables has a MT0 or MT1 inside taper. I use a drill that is broken but still true for alignment. Setting the chuck in place on the drill shaft and clamping to it. Then setting the 4 clamps to the table. Opening the chuck enough to remove the drill. It doesn't set exactly, but close enough for what I do. Within a thou or two, , ,

Oh yeah, watch where you locate the gears for the chuck. With 3 gears and 4 clamps, there's only a couple places where everything is accessible. There are also a couple of B&S true dividing heads at 40:1 but so big and heavy that they don't get used all that much. One has a 3" chuck and the other a 5". Both screw on bases.

.
 

Spotshooter

Registered
Registered
Joined
Dec 28, 2018
Messages
57
I’m a gunsmith, but also do small jobs so the biggest thing I would hold is most likely a lathe spider or an action which is much smaller.
 

Winegrower

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2014
Messages
771
There are a bunch of eBay sellers offering what is called a B&S 0 5" Dividing Head, for about $256, free shipping. I bought one, it's really quite impressive. Comes with tailstock, dividing plates, etc. The 5" three jaw chuck is removable, has about 0.003-0.004 runout, and will work on my rotary table, too. I recommend this unit.

Don't fall for the $50 versions. :)
 

Aaron_W

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Nov 14, 2016
Messages
1,128
I got myself this one as a late Christmas present. I haven't done enough with it to be able to speak to its accuracy, but I'm happy with it. Everything functions smoothly, and it is well finished. It may be relatively cheap, but it doesn't feel cheap.

Precision Matthews BS 0 Dividing head
 

jwmelvin

Registered
Registered
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
278
Yea, geesh, no biggie. ^^ That shop-made one looks amazing! I also just bought a BS-0 (haven’t even opened the box, it just arrived).
 

bretthl

Registered
Registered
Joined
Oct 16, 2017
Messages
240
You could make yourself one. I made this one last weekend.
That's awesome. If I may, what tool did you use to scribe the division lines? Reason I ask is I have a lathe that has divs on the tail stock arbor that were laser etched and after about a year they wore off.
 

Winegrower

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2014
Messages
771
The PM dividing head and the eBay units appear identical. They must all come off the same line.
 

ddickey

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2016
Messages
2,576
That's awesome. If I may, what tool did you use to scribe the division lines? Reason I ask is I have a lathe that has divs on the tail stock arbor that were laser etched and after about a year they wore off.
A shop made dial stamping fixture that I bought plans for. Works quite well
 

Attachments

bretthl

Registered
Registered
Joined
Oct 16, 2017
Messages
240
A shop made dial stamping fixture that I bought plans for. Works quite well
So you are scribing a line using the mill's X axis and indexing with the dial stamping fixture? How does the dial stamping fixture differ from an indexer?
 

Aaron_W

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Nov 14, 2016
Messages
1,128
The PM dividing head and the eBay units appear identical. They must all come off the same line.
Somebody posted a review one of the cheaper Ebay dividing heads a couple months ago. The only difference I could find from my PM one was a different (but still pretty generic) brand name on the chuck. I've noticed most of the sellers even seem to use the same stock photos. If you ask PM is upfront about these coming from China and possibly even being identical to some of the other dividing heads being sold.

Considering what vintage dividing heads missing parts are asking on ebay $319 is still a bargain even if it isn't the cheapest option. I'll take a risk on some cheap $25 end mills, but when I start looking at $200-300 items I'm more comfortable dealing with a vendor that I know will respond if I have an issue.
 

ddickey

H-M Supporter - Gold Member
H-M Supporter Gold Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2016
Messages
2,576
So you are scribing a line using the mill's X axis and indexing with the dial stamping fixture? How does the dial stamping fixture differ from an indexer?
I suppose you could, just be never tried it though.
 

Morgan RedHawk

Active User
H-M Platinum Supporter
Joined
Jan 10, 2014
Messages
190
I bought a BS-2 by Vertex (Taiwanese). I specifically wanted the ability to cut spirals. Hopefully the quality is as good as the Vertex rotary table I have. It should be here in a few days, and will report back about how it is. They also make the semi-universal dividing heads.
 

Lo-Fi

H-M Supporter - Silver Member
H-M Supporter - Silver Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2019
Messages
339
Please do post up your spiral milling exploits, @Morgan RedHawk

I was setting up to do so myself before I got side tracked into other stuff.
 

Morgan RedHawk

Active User
H-M Platinum Supporter
Joined
Jan 10, 2014
Messages
190
Well, the shipment is delayed, so it will be at least a few more days. I will post up some pics when it does decide to show up.
 

Morgan RedHawk

Active User
H-M Platinum Supporter
Joined
Jan 10, 2014
Messages
190
The thing finally shipped! Only took 2 months. It is supposed to be here Friday. I will report back with the promised information.
 
It can take up to an hour for ads to appear on the page. See our code implementation guide for more details. If you already have Auto ad code on your pages there's no need to replace it with this code
Top
AdBlock Detected

We get it, advertisements are annoying!

Sure, ad-blocking software does a great job at blocking ads, but it also blocks useful features of our website. For the best site experience please disable your AdBlocker.

I've Disabled AdBlock