View Full Version : QC tool post???
12-01-2008, 12:50 PM
Three years ago I bought a worn out 10" Logan.
I have finally returned it to serviceable condition. The lathe came with a rocker tool post and a 4-way tool post thats somewhat worn and has to be shimmed to get the bits on center.
I have been looking at QC tool posts and have some questions.
What is the difference between "piston" and "wedge" style QC tool posts?
Which type will work best on my Logan?
What is a good low cost brand?
Are the tool holders generally interchangeable between brands?
All advice will be cherished!
12-01-2008, 01:12 PM
You are asking all the right questions. The piston type use a piston to push perpendicular out the side of the tool post to wedge the tool holders in place where the wedge type have one side of the dovetail slide up to widen the dovetail and clamp the tool holder in place. Theoretically the latter have a bit more gripping force, but I have a piston type and never had one just shake loose or anything like that.
I bought a Phase II set (on sale a lot of the time at Enco) and then added tool holders from various import sources over the years. For the most part, there is interchangability. Some have reported that they bought holders that were just a bit off, but in buying from three different sources, I have never had that problem.
CDCO tools seems to have some really inexpensive tool holders for the standard posts. I bought a few and had to turn the locking screws square on the ends but otherwise feel I got my money's worth. I could not make them for the price I paid.
12-01-2008, 01:46 PM
I agree with Paul about the piston style will working just fine on your lathe. If you had a bunch of HP and were taking huge cuts you might want the wedge style but its not necessary on your lathe. The Phase II piston set from Enco can be had for about $100 on sale and the holders for about $9 from CDCO.
12-01-2008, 01:48 PM
Thanks Paul and Mark--
One other question I forgot - Do these QC posts adjust for tool height?
12-01-2008, 01:49 PM
I'd also recommend CDCO, very inexpensive, might as well get the (slightly) better wedge model for that price. Sure paying twice as much for a brand name might get you slightly better fit/finish, but I don't think it's worth it.
I've had the BXA sized wedge QCTP for a few years and it's great. I just need to get a huge supply of holders - I'm still on the original set and changing tool bits gets old pretty fast.
Before I ordered the set, I found the Aloris catalog which has all the specs that are copied by the generic toolpost sets. I made sure that the post would give me the right tool height based on the distance from the top of the compound to the spindle centerline. Probably AXA would be right for a 10" lathe.
PS - yes, they adjust for height, based on top/bottom of holder against top/bottom of post block. If needed you can also raise the holder just a little bit more but it's not repeatable (I do this when I have a weird home made miniature boring bar or something.)
12-01-2008, 02:33 PM
In the home shop the piston is more than adequate. And as mentioned ENCO seems to always have the Phase ll's on sale, with the AXA (which your lathe will take) at $99, then you can get the free frt code and you've got a quality tool holder at a VERY good price.
Then ease over to CDCO and get a couple dozen holders:rolleyes: for $9 each, and you'll be set! Seriously, you will no doubt wanna add several more holders -- they're kinda like clamps, you never seem to have enough...