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KiddZimaHater
10-20-2012, 12:12 PM
I'm fishing for opinions about finishing the Faceplate for my lathe.
It was a slow week, so I finally had a chance to make it.
I've got it turned, threaded, all squared away and ready for the final step.
Here's the question:
Should I; 1. Mill 4 Tee-Slots in it to use clamping kits. 2.Mill Thru slots for clamping (as I've seen on several faceplate), or 3.Tap a Gazillion 1/2-13 holes spaced about 3/4" apart all over the faceplate?
I'm kinda leaning towards the Gazillion tapped holes.

gvasale
10-20-2012, 12:48 PM
Copying a pre-produced design might be a good idea. Smarter people than myself designed them.

flylo
10-20-2012, 01:02 PM
Why can't you do 2 or all 3 of the above, Slots & half a Gazillion holes?

DannyW
10-20-2012, 01:26 PM
I'm kinda leaning towards the Gazillion tapped holes.


If I was you, I would take that route.
It is more stout & versatile in the long run and simple to fabricate.

Don't forget chamfering them all, as material will tear upwards from the threads, and distort future settings.
In other words, your workpieces will not lie flat anymore on the faceplate, if you don't chamfer them
& use gorilla tactics when fastening.

look out for bumps on the surface when setting up.
But your future will be bright from now on. Faceplate wise.

;-)


Also, you have to fight gravity, setting things up vertically (clamps, blocks, ...).
So keep it simple & easy. You only have two hands instead of six, to hold it all in place!

Regards,

Danny

Black_Moons
10-20-2012, 01:38 PM
Also, you have to fight gravity, setting things up vertically (clamps, blocks, ...).
So keep it simple & easy. You only have two hands instead of six, to hold it all in place!

Regards,

Danny

Protip: Place a wooden or plastic board across your ways under the faceplate when doing setups involving heavy, case hardened clamps and 123 blocks. They put wonderful dents in the ways when they slip loose and fall. -_-

Forrest Addy
10-20-2012, 01:57 PM
T slots and holes are never where you need them.

Drill and tap as necessary. When the plate get Swiss cheesed, make a new one. Ugly maybe but who are you trying to impress? Some judgemental know-nothing or the bottom line?

DannyW
10-20-2012, 02:19 PM
Protip: Place a wooden or plastic board across your ways under the faceplate when doing setups involving heavy, case hardened clamps and 123 blocks. They put wonderful dents in the ways when they slip loose and fall. -_-

"Dents-on experience" is hard to beat.

;-)


Good tip, BM!

Regards,

Danny

Mcgyver
10-20-2012, 02:28 PM
T slots are convenient to use because the run a longer distance than the slots....but I'd think drilling where needed would the best. Some fussing when you need to use the faceplate but you get to clamp exactly where you want it - and that's a source of faceplate frustration.

Swiss cheese? I've made sure every lathe I have as all the accessories, usually part of my buying criteria....but years can go by without needing a faceplate. I like having them because sometimes its the only way but it'd take a couple oif lifetimes to put too many holes in a faceplate, at least in my shop. Others may be different

DannyW
10-20-2012, 02:30 PM
T slots and holes are never where you need them.

Drill and tap as necessary. When the plate get Swiss cheesed, make a new one. Ugly maybe but who are you trying to impress? Some judgemental know-nothing or the bottom line?


*DING* *DING* *DING* *DING*

We have a winner!

But somewhat harder to do then to pick one of the four holes already in place in the neighbourhood and waiting to be used.

;-)


But yes, it's only a slab of iron. Use it as you see fit & discard & repeat.
Or hang it afterwards in your "conversation starters" vitrine.


Regards,

Danny

uncle pete
10-20-2012, 02:42 PM
Kiddz,
Maybe another way to look at it? Faceplates are used because of just how versitile they are. Sometimes it's the only workholding method that will work. I'm not convinced a single faceplate will do everything. Since adding tee slots, through slots, and tapped holes would net you almost zero metal left to hold the work. So just maybe start with the threaded holes and pick up another cast iron blank or two with the idea that different work may need different holding methods anyway. Drilled and tapped faceplates could almost be classed as semi consumable tooling anyway after it gets swiss cheesed with enough holes to fit different work.

Pete

darryl
10-20-2012, 03:03 PM
My take on that is to lay out two patterns and scratch the lines into place. Two lines cross the center axis at right angles, and one of those radii becomes one leg of a three line layout, in other words 120 degrees apart. You now have markings that will allow accurate hole placement for both square and triangular or hexagonal layout. Then just mark out radial distances and drill holes to suit the job at hand. Chances are that once you have a few patterns of holes drilled, they will suit a good variety of clamping jobs.

Note that the faceplate will be unbalanced once you have drilled a few sets of holes along all the lines. You can add a second pair of lines in mirror image fashion and drill holes along them as required to keep the balance. You'll see what I mean once you have the square and triangular layouts scribed.

By the way, I'd scratch or scribe all the lines fairly deeply, as you will want from time to time to true up the face of the plate. You might also want to make up a wooden jig to lay the plate into so it lays flat for the hole drilling operations. You can keep the plate in the jig for storage.

rohart
10-20-2012, 03:33 PM
When I made a faceplate, for a lathe with a D1-3 spindle, I decided to do it in two parts. I made a D1-3 boss, and bolted the flat plate, with radial slots, to it.

It wasn't until later that I realised that I could fit a plain boss and hold that in the 4-jaw, giving me tha ability to mount a part on the faceplate and then adjust it for position before turning. It's like having an adjust-tru faceplate.

Anyway, I go for method 2, radial slots, with some intermediate slots near the outer edge. And I chose twelve slots, so I can go for 90 degree mounting, or 120 degree mounting.

I felt that T-slots would require too much meat. I use a lot of coach bolts, with the square part of the shank filed down, so they act as effective T-slot bolts.

RussZHC
10-20-2012, 07:15 PM
+1 on copying pre-produced designs, if you want to "pre" at all.

Maybe take a look at what tools4cheap is offering, they have faceplates with combo of holes and slots the design of which, I believe, is a copy of what South Bend did (most of what I have seen photos of the "T" slots are on larger plates and cast in such a manner as to be thicker on the slots that are "T"...a lot of those patterns are 8 slots, with 4 being "T")

CCWKen
10-20-2012, 07:26 PM
I fall in the group that believes if you can't decide, you probably don't need a faceplate so drill it as needed.

Oldbrock
10-20-2012, 07:36 PM
I usually set the faceplate on the bench and bolt the part in place roughly on center then dial my work in after it is mounted on the spindle. This way I don't need four hands to try to hold things in place. Peter

Rich Carlstedt
10-20-2012, 10:50 PM
If the lathe is 13" or smaller, I would use 3/8 's threads instead of 1/2"
Rich

Bob Ford
10-20-2012, 11:13 PM
Keep in mind that you do not want to make too many slots or holes. A rotating bomb going off next to your face is not fun. Check what factory made plates look like. When I was young a friend lost both feet to a improperly lighten flywheel on a race car.

Bob

rkepler
10-20-2012, 11:16 PM
I have faceplates in all 3 conditions - t-slots, through slots and tapped holes. In general I found that I use the t-slot faceplate the most, then the tapped holes and have never used the one with through slots. A lot of times I make a fixture plate that goes over the faceplate and the faceplate is simply the way I clamp it to the spindle, here's an action shot:

http://www.kepler-eng.com/images/shoes_on_faceplate.jpg

oldtiffie
10-21-2012, 12:41 AM
.........................................

Also, you have to fight gravity, setting things up vertically (clamps, blocks, ...).
So keep it simple & easy. You only have two hands instead of six, to hold it all in place!

.............................................

Danny

I'd suggest that if the job is awkward to set up with the face-plate on the lathe, take the face-plate off and sit it on a table - on parallel strips if needed - and use gravity to do a preliminary set up on the face-plate front face - then if needs be put the whole assemly back on the lathe and "fine tune" the set-up.

Further, as a face-plate is used in a dynamic situation "out of balance" and centripedal for will need to be reckoned with - as should spindle speed.

Having a lathe start to shake and have parts fly off the face-plate is some experience you can do without. It leaves the oft-quoted perils of leaving a chuck key in a chuck for dead.

Many (all?) good faceplate hace concentric grooves to assist with set-up - same as some three and four jaw chucks (six jaw chucks too).

It all makes life that bit easier.

The human eye is excellent at picking up concentricity errors from/with those concentric grooves.

Rosco-P
10-21-2012, 10:03 AM
T slots and holes are never where you need them.

Drill and tap as necessary. When the plate get Swiss cheesed, make a new one. Ugly maybe but who are you trying to impress? Some judgemental know-nothing or the bottom line?

+1 on Forrest said. Any pre-drilled hole is likely to be in the wrong place. How thick is the plate, what diameter? Maybe only two slots to start with. Make two plates to start, leave the second one devoid of holes, slots, etc.