Tool Post Styles

horty

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Hi, I've been thinking of making a different tool post for my gingery lathe, the one I use now is the lantern type, ( i think thats what its called,) round bar with slot with bolt in top center and spacers to put at the bottom to adjust height.

There must be something else simple to make that wont take so much screwing around to get it centered.

I have looked at alot but not sure if some of them will work as I have only .375" from top of compound rest to center of tail stock..

Any ideas or plans will be really appreciated,

Thanks,
Tim
 

T Bredehoft

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3/8ths from the top of the compound to the center of rotation? Do you have the correct Tailstock? Please don't take thei the wrong way, but it sounds like your lathe is poorly designed, can only turn something 3/4" in diameter.
 

horty

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From the top of the compound slide/rest (were the tool bar mounts)from the top of that plate to the center of the lathe or center of tail stock is only .375",
From the center of the chuck to the main ways, carriage ways, is 3.875"
 

mickri

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What lathe do you have? A picture would help. Something doesn't seem right. You could make a 4 way tool holder or even a Norman style QCTP. Whatever you end up with you are pretty much limited 1/8" to 1/4" HSS tool bits. I saw this interesting tool holder on a video today.

You have to shim the tool bit to height. What isn't shown in the picture is an adjusting screw on the other side of the center post that acts as a pivot point so that tightening the center post clamps the tool bit in place.
 

Dabbler

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do you have a jeweler's lathe? it seems a little bit small...

To start with I've done a lot of great work with my lantern toolpost - there must be reasons for adding another... Care to share?

Every lathe I own has a rocker toolpost, a 4-way tool post, and an Aloris style tool post. I like them all, each for different reasons. They each are very well suited for a wide range of operations.

The easiest and cheapest to make (if you have access to a mill) is the 4 way tool post. People will slam me for this, but properly tooled, and well made, it is the most rigid of all the tool posts, except a solid block to the carriage. Most people (incorrectly) shim tools to get centre height for a given tool. That works in an improvised kind of way. I have milled my tooling for my 4 way so that the tool is always on centre without shims. saves time and is the best set up for rigidity.

For such a small lathe you could also consider the Aloris style in the 0XA sizing. The Aloris type is very versatile, but you have to shell out for holders for each of your tools. It can get mid-spendy if you have a lot of tools. (not as spendy as some, however)

The real question that you should ask is what do I need to do with my lathe that I can't do now? The answer to that is going to give you direction on how to spend your money well.
 

Alcap

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Just going to throw this out , on my little Chinese lathe ( think of a old Smithy3 in 1 without the mill ) it has a 4 way tool post and not much distance between the compound and bottom of the 4 way , I couldn't fit 1/2" tools , not enough stock to cut the bottom lower so on one side I just cut it off so on the one side of the holder it clamps right to the compound ( some shimming required ) might just give you an option of using lantern style tool holders with a 4 way
 

Diecutter

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horty, You are correct that there is .375 distance between the top of the compound and the top face of the cutter. That's what mine measures also.
<------- see avatar to your left. The Gingery lathe is a 7" by 16" capacity machine which is built by casting aluminum melted down from scrap. It can turn way more than 1/2" dia. The aluminum disc you see in the photo measures over 6 1/2" dia. and is mounted on a face plate for turning. My lathe also has the lantern tool post and uses 1/4" square brazed carbide cutters. Tool height is adjusted by stacking washers under the post. It would be hard to fit any other style tool holder on this machine as far as I can see.
 

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horty

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Everyone replying to me.

And thanks diecutter, I appreciate it..:clapping:

Diecutter shows the same lathe, Gingery I made, except mine is 28" to the front of the tail stock.
I made it longer to for some of the things I machine, or use to..

But you can see that the distance is around .375", I put a .250" plate on top of my compound ( decreased it from .625 to .375 what it is now) to increase the threaded hole life for the tool holder bolt, I put in threaded inserts instead of threading into aluminum or the .250" steel as with time that hole will wear out and I can always replace the insert, I put a 10-28 set screw in from the back to lock the inserts in place.

Now, back to the tool holder, overnight I come to realize that lantern type holder I have will work fine, I started making a new one this morning, well kinda, right off the bat I screwed it up, but that's why I have brazing set up here, I can most of the time fix my screw-ups.

This new lantern will have a concave washer washer at the bottom that a wood ruff key will sit in to give me that little bit of tilt I need to align the tool bit.. what I hatted before was finding the correct size thin spacers to give me the right height, to high-to low, to high-to low...

I will post a pic of it when done if it turns out, If it looks like crap you wont see it :oops: I don't want to embarrass myself.

Thank for all trying to help, and thanks to diecutter for bailing me out.. your the man...

Have a nice day,
Tim:beer bottles:Now its Time for breakfast...

I just seen that if diecutter had a motor set up, he could really spin that tool bit to the right angle:laughing:
 
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mickri

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That's a cool little lathe. You could make a 4 way toolholder or a Norman style QCTP. The 4 way may be the easiest to make. The base of the 4 way would sit on the compound. The body could be made two different ways. One way would be to start with a solid chunk of steel and mill slots for the tool bits. If you don't have a mill you could do the milling by putting an end mill in the lathe and shim the work to the height you want on the compound. Tighten it down and mill the slot. Or you could make the it with 3 pieces either welded or screwed together.
Here is a link to my thread on making a Norman QCTP. https://www.hobby-machinist.com/threads/norman-style-qctp.79705/ You could scale everything to fit your lathe.
 

Diecutter

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horty, I did have a motor setup on it and ran the lathe for about a year machining prototypes for a company in Philadelphia. Recently I stole the two step pulleys from it for the drive on my knee mill which is now operational and works great. inter2.JPG home made
 

bill stupak

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Here's a simple Norman style that should be easily scalable. I made one for myself and used it successfully for many years.

 

mikey

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The easiest and cheapest to make (if you have access to a mill) is the 4 way tool post. People will slam me for this, but properly tooled, and well made, it is the most rigid of all the tool posts, except a solid block to the carriage.
Nobody will slam you for this, Dabbler, because its true.
 

horty

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Hi Guys, boy, alot of good ideas, I like them all, but first this is what I made today.

I just don't like it, seems to work ok but it still a fiddler, or am I being to picky about this, I don't like the wasted time getting things in line, but this one is better than the old one I was using.. this one will take 1/4", 5/16" and 3/8" bits.
 

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horty

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That's a cool little lathe. You could make a 4 way toolholder or a Norman style QCTP. The 4 way may be the easiest to make. The base of the 4 way would sit on the compound. The body could be made two different ways. One way would be to start with a solid chunk of steel and mill slots for the tool bits. If you don't have a mill you could do the milling by putting an end mill in the lathe and shim the work to the height you want on the compound. Tighten it down and mill the slot. Or you could make the it with 3 pieces either welded or screwed together.
Here is a link to my thread on making a Norman QCTP. https://www.hobby-machinist.com/threads/norman-style-qctp.79705/ You could scale everything to fit your lathe.
Hi, this one seems to complicated for me, but it is a nice setup..
Thanks
Tim
 

horty

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Here's a simple Norman style that should be easily scalable. I made one for myself and used it successfully for many years.

Hi, this is another nice setup, but sometimes I need to tilt tool bit up or down, guess I could put spacer at rear of tool bit in that case, but then I'm back fiddling with spacers...
Thanks
Tim
 

horty

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Just going to throw this out , on my little Chinese lathe ( think of a old Smithy3 in 1 without the mill ) it has a 4 way tool post and not much distance between the compound and bottom of the 4 way , I couldn't fit 1/2" tools , not enough stock to cut the bottom lower so on one side I just cut it off so on the one side of the holder it clamps right to the compound ( some shimming required ) might just give you an option of using lantern style tool holders with a 4 way
Hi, something I'm really going to think about.
Thanks
Tim
What lathe do you have? A picture would help. Something doesn't seem right. You could make a 4 way tool holder or even a Norman style QCTP. Whatever you end up with you are pretty much limited 1/8" to 1/4" HSS tool bits. I saw this interesting tool holder on a video today.

You have to shim the tool bit to height. What isn't shown in the picture is an adjusting screw on the other side of the center post that acts as a pivot point so that tightening the center post clamps the tool bit in place.
Hi, this is a fiddler but looks like an easier fiddler.
Thanks
Tim
 

horty

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Well, being I'm all confused now and feel like I should be in a nursing home, I need to think about the best option, and if I forgot to answer someone, I apologize, but do appreciate it very much,,
do you have a jeweler's lathe? it seems a little bit small...

To start with I've done a lot of great work with my lantern toolpost - there must be reasons for adding another... Care to share?

Every lathe I own has a rocker toolpost, a 4-way tool post, and an Aloris style tool post. I like them all, each for different reasons. They each are very well suited for a wide range of operations.

The easiest and cheapest to make (if you have access to a mill) is the 4 way tool post. People will slam me for this, but properly tooled, and well made, it is the most rigid of all the tool posts, except a solid block to the carriage. Most people (incorrectly) shim tools to get centre height for a given tool. That works in an improvised kind of way. I have milled my tooling for my 4 way so that the tool is always on centre without shims. saves time and is the best set up for rigidity.

For such a small lathe you could also consider the Aloris style in the 0XA sizing. The Aloris type is very versatile, but you have to shell out for holders for each of your tools. It can get mid-spendy if you have a lot of tools. (not as spendy as some, however)

The real question that you should ask is what do I need to do with my lathe that I can't do now? The answer to that is going to give you direction on how to spend your money well.
Hi, I have 3 or 4 of these Aloris style holders but no the main part that fastens to the lathe, but as I looked at them, the holder for the tool bit is to thick at the bottom which makes the tool bit to high to start with, unless I remove 1/4" or more from the bottom of the holder, not sure what to do.
Thanks
Tim

Thanks everyone,
Tim
 

mickri

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What I would do if I was in your situation is make a 3D model in Google Sketchup of each of the different types of tool holders scaled to fit your lathe. That will give you a visual. If you don't use Sketchup or any other 3D modeling software I would be glad to model them in Sketchup for you. Just let me know. Then you could make one of each in wood to see how it actually fits. Then make what you like best in steel.

You will find that you will use each of the different types of tool holders depending on what you are doing. I use my lantern to reach into tight places. If I am going to be using 2 or 3 different tool bits back and forth over and over I will set up my 4 way so I can just swivel between the different tool bits. I do use my Norman style QCTP most of the time. They are really easy to make and not complicated once you figure out the sizing and placement of the slot to fit your lathe. If you can make a lantern you can make a 4 way or a Norman.

I think that the reason you are having to tilt your tool bits up or down is the get tip of the tool bit on center. From looking at your pictures the 3/8 tool bit has to be tipped down to get the point on center. The 1/4 and 5/16 you are tipping up for the same reason. To get the tip of the tool bit on center. This requires a lot of fiddling. With either a 4 way or Norman style QCTP you would be limited to using tool bits no bigger than 1/4. You have to shim with the 4 way. Some people glue the shims to the tool bit or use a larger tool bit and grind it down so that the tip is on center. With any of the QCTP there is an adjustment screw that you use to raise or lower the tool holder to get the tip on center. In all of these situations the tool bit is level in the tool holder. Never angled. This makes grinding the tool bits a lot easier.

You will figure out what works best for you. Most of all have fun.
 

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@horty I've read more about your lathe, and it seems to me that it might be best to make your own, that will fit your lathe properly.

Really nice work on your rocker tool post. Very professional looking!

You didn't mention the 'size' of the aloris style tool holders you have. I still think you might get away with the '0xa' size of aloris style holder. Here are the dimensions of the smallest readily available aloris-style holder, the 0XA (bottom of the page):


Another way to get more height is to attach a threaded steel insert below your cross slide. that .250 space will be critical in fitting a tool post.

we don't tend to "slam" people here.
@Boswell, that is mostly true. I sometimes have to police bad behavoir here from time to time, as people tend to get emotional about tool posts at times.
 

mickri

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Tim I have been doing some research on your lathe. Very, very interesting. Here is a link to a forum member who made one. He may be able to help you with your tool post. https://www.hobby-machinist.com/threads/gingery-lathe.70810/

I saw several online that had a 4 way. There seems to be more room than 3/8" from the top of the compound to center line. And looking at your pictures it looks like there is around 3/4" from the top of the compound to center line. You have a spacer that appears to be 1/4" to 3/8" and then what I call the rocker/shim and finally your tool bits. Assuming that you have the tip of the tool bit on center line what is the distance from the tip to the compound? Where are you measuring from?

gingery lathe 01.jpg
 

horty

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Tim I have been doing some research on your lathe. Very, very interesting. Here is a link to a forum member who made one. He may be able to help you with your tool post. https://www.hobby-machinist.com/threads/gingery-lathe.70810/

I saw several online that had a 4 way. There seems to be more room than 3/8" from the top of the compound to center line. And looking at your pictures it looks like there is around 3/4" from the top of the compound to center line. You have a spacer that appears to be 1/4" to 3/8" and then what I call the rocker/shim and finally your tool bits. Assuming that you have the tip of the tool bit on center line what is the distance from the tip to the compound? Where are you measuring from?

View attachment 318413
Hi, looks are deceiving in my pic i believe, In the pic the arrow on the right is .375, if I lay a .375 tool bit on top in aligns about perfect with carbide center.
The spacer is alittle less than .250, it doesnt look right but thats what I measure.
Thanks
 

horty

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Well guys, all in all, I'm about up to my ears in tool bar information,,, can never know to much about tool bars.:)

Today I spent about 10 hours playing with my tool bars, :D and by the end of the day I was back to the old one that I always used.
Its similar to the new one, just shorter, and will take only .250 bits, but that's OK, I can always use the new one for bigger bits when I need to.
So, for the old one, it takes washer like shims to raise and lower the tool bit , I made up about 10 different thickness of washers that can be used to center the bit.. its fiddling, but its seems if you think about it, everybody does a fare share of fiddling and will just Live With It..
Its not so bad if I keep the shims in a handy place.
I am now kinda at peace about this tool bit excitment:cheer:
Thanks for all the help..
Tim
 

horty

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What I would do if I was in your situation is make a 3D model in Google Sketchup of each of the different types of tool holders scaled to fit your lathe. That will give you a visual. If you don't use Sketchup or any other 3D modeling software I would be glad to model them in Sketchup for you. Just let me know. Then you could make one of each in wood to see how it actually fits. Then make what you like best in steel.

You will find that you will use each of the different types of tool holders depending on what you are doing. I use my lantern to reach into tight places. If I am going to be using 2 or 3 different tool bits back and forth over and over I will set up my 4 way so I can just swivel between the different tool bits. I do use my Norman style QCTP most of the time. They are really easy to make and not complicated once you figure out the sizing and placement of the slot to fit your lathe. If you can make a lantern you can make a 4 way or a Norman.

I think that the reason you are having to tilt your tool bits up or down is the get tip of the tool bit on center. From looking at your pictures the 3/8 tool bit has to be tipped down to get the point on center. The 1/4 and 5/16 you are tipping up for the same reason. To get the tip of the tool bit on center. This requires a lot of fiddling. With either a 4 way or Norman style QCTP you would be limited to using tool bits no bigger than 1/4. You have to shim with the 4 way. Some people glue the shims to the tool bit or use a larger tool bit and grind it down so that the tip is on center. With any of the QCTP there is an adjustment screw that you use to raise or lower the tool holder to get the tip on center. In all of these situations the tool bit is level in the tool holder. Never angled. This makes grinding the tool bits a lot easier.

You will figure out what works best for you. Most of all have fun.
That would be great when you have time, because I can always use several different styles for different jobs..
Thanks,
Tim
 

horty

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@horty I've read more about your lathe, and it seems to me that it might be best to make your own, that will fit your lathe properly.

Really nice work on your rocker tool post. Very professional looking!

You didn't mention the 'size' of the aloris style tool holders you have. I still think you might get away with the '0xa' size of aloris style holder. Here are the dimensions of the smallest readily available aloris-style holder, the 0XA (bottom of the page):


Another way to get more height is to attach a threaded steel insert below your cross slide. that .250 space will be critical in fitting a tool post.



@Boswell, that is mostly true. I sometimes have to police bad behavoir here from time to time, as people tend to get emotional about tool posts at times.
Thanks for saying it looked professional, but really with age my OCD is lagging, but good enough, leaves me more time for an extra beer or 2
Tim
 

mickri

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Tim
Based on the dimensions you have given here is a sketch of a 4 way that should fit you lathe. I made it 2" square by 7/8" high. The slot is 1/8" up from the bottom and is 3/8" high by 5/16 deep. If it was me I would make the slot not quite 5/16 deep so that a 5/16 tool bit would be just proud of the edge. This way when you need to square a tool bit to the chuck face the 4 way does not get in the way. I guessed that the center screw was 3/8. Drill the center hole to whatever size you need. I made the set screws 1/4". They could be smaller but I don't think that they could be any bigger. The set screws are 5/32" in from the edge. Depending on how you grind your tool bits you might not need any shims with 1/4" tool bits. 5/16 and 3/8 tool bits would have to be ground so that the tip would be at center line. Dabbler does this. I am sure that he would give some pointers on how to do it. I'll have a sketch of a Norman style QCTP for you sometime tomorrow.

4 way.jpg
 
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mickri

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Here's the Norman. All I had to draw was the tool holder. It is basically just one side of the 4 way.

norman.jpg

Because you have a flat top on the compound you don't need a base. And because of the limited distance from the compound to center line you would only use the height adjustment screw for tool bits 1/4" and smaller. For a 5/16 or 3/8 tool bit the tool holder would sit on the compound and the tool bit would have to be ground to be on center line just like with the 4 way. You might be able to get away with using the screw that is on the compound as the post. I would certainly try that first. If you have to have a post you want it as large as possible to provide more clamping area.

The dimensions are the same as with the 4 way except for the width which I drew at 1 1/2". The height adjustment screw I drew in at 5/8" up and 5/8" from the side. You would have to check the location to make sure that the height adjustment screw is over the top of the compound and that there is sufficient room between the center post and the nut on the height adjustment screw for a wrench to fit on the nut . You will mostly likely have to change the location. The clamping bolt should be 3/8 if possible. Otherwise use a 5/16 grade 8 bolt. 1/4 bolts aren't strong enough. I tried a 1/4 bolt and twisted head off trying to get the tool holder clamped to the post. I cut the slot to the post with a hacksaw and that width has been sufficient to clamp the holder to the post.

I am sure that I have missed some detail.
 

brino

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@horty
Tim, you are getting some great help here with people posting all kinds of ideas!

Here's one more.....
Just today I saw an interesting tool-post version I'd never seen before; more like a mill-table hold-down or toe clamp.
It's the seventh picture in this post:
https://www.hobby-machinist.com/threads/new-small-lathe-owner-from-canada.83300/post-731768

I will try a direct link, but not certain that it will work:
https://www.hobby-machinist.com/attachments/20200329_102637-jpg.318584/

For you, I wondered if you could gain some vertical height by placing your cutting tool directly on to the cross slide (ie. without the rocker-shim and spacer as labelled by @mickri above).
Of course, you'd still need to shim it to centre height, but it might allow you to use larger tool bits without tilting them.

But sorry, my CAD skills are not as good as @mickri above, it would take me days to electronically capture what I mean.
If you need a hand-drawn sketch, let me know.

-brino
 

Alcap

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Here's what I did on my tool post , just one side is cut for larger tools DSCN2512.JPG DSCN2509.JPG DSCN2509.JPG
 
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