View Full Version : My Toolpost Project

Paul Alciatore
04-29-2004, 11:29 PM
I just thought you all might like to see the results of the recent good advice I got here. Here's my new toolpost in a partially complete stage.


Again, thanks to all for the great advise.

Paul A.

G.A. Ewen
04-29-2004, 11:37 PM
Looking good Paul! Can't wait to see the finished product.

04-29-2004, 11:41 PM
Now we know what the slots were about. Is that for your SB? If so I think I will have to make one as well. Please show more pics.

Paul Alciatore
04-30-2004, 02:43 AM
Roger on the SB.

I'll post more pix as work progresses.

Paul A.

04-30-2004, 06:22 AM
Nice Work Paul, Keep us posted as to your progress. That would be cool

Rob http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

04-30-2004, 12:30 PM
Good work, looking forward to seeing your completed project!

04-30-2004, 08:51 PM
Looking good!

Al Messer
04-30-2004, 09:46 PM
Looking good, Paul! Just make sure that the top of the compound is flat---it wasn't/isn't on my M-W/Logan and I have to shim one corner of the base to keep everything on the center line.

Paul Alciatore
05-12-2004, 01:39 AM
Well, it's coming along. All the top holes are drilled, bored, and counterbored where necessary. All the toolholders fit the post perfectly - well almost.


Now comes the interesting work. I plan to mill a flat on the post and cut one corner off each toolholder for a clamp. This should allow the tools to be removed and reinstalled in the exact same position. I started tonight but no pictures yet.

Paul A.

05-12-2004, 02:32 AM
Damn Paul, not only does the work look superb but your photography is excellent.

Paul Alciatore
05-12-2004, 10:23 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Evan:
Damn Paul, not only does the work look superb but your photography is excellent.</font>


Photoshop helps.

Actually, they don't really look that good. The faces of the toolholders are either the original mill finish or fly cut. Something happens when you reduce the size of the picture. It'a called blurring.

Now, if only if I could work as fast as you do.

Paul A.

[This message has been edited by Paul Alciatore (edited 05-12-2004).]

05-12-2004, 10:43 AM

I don't feel like I work very fast. I find myself sitting on my stool in my shop woolgathering sometimes because I can't immediately find the allen wrench I need to adjust something. I think however the main reason that I do get anything done is because nearly all my working life I have worked without direct supervision. If I didn't tell myself to "Get a move on!" I would have been out of a job. It's an old habit. (my wife may be tempted to disagree) http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

John in OH
05-12-2004, 12:14 PM
Paul, Nice work! Wish that I could get the motivation to get things done like this! Got a couple of questions..... what clearance did you use between the post and the tool holders? and are all the slots cut for the same size toolbits?

05-12-2004, 07:28 PM
Looks real nice. I built mine several years ago now and they work well. A word of advice though. You should either give up smoking or quite laying your fags on the corner of the bench. Hate to see all that nice work get smoked. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

05-12-2004, 10:45 PM
Nice work Paul;
Everytime I think about getting another lathe to replace my SB9 one of you guys come up with a project like this, then I can't justify getting rid of it http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif Keep up the good work
Jim http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

G.A. Ewen
05-12-2004, 11:48 PM
You are motivating me to make more tool holders for mine. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Paul Alciatore
05-13-2004, 01:46 AM

Evan, Yes, wives tend to disagree about many things. I think I'll keep her anyway.

John, Clearance: Tool post was speced at 1.250 +0 -0.001" As built it's at about -0.001" or so. The tool holders were speced at 1.251 +0.002 -0.000. I believe they all met spec. That leaves a minimum of 0.002" clearance and some are a tiny bit looser. They will assemble easily. But I'm not through. I plan to mill a flat on the post and cut the corners off the holders and install a clamp plate there. So in use they should be in 100% contact all around and from top to bottom. I'm hoping for rock solid. I'm still working on the design of the clamp. Mostly the thickness. It needs to take up 2 or 3 thousanths and yet be as solid as possible. I plan to use the same steel that the holders are made of. 1/8 to 1/4 sounds about right to me but I'm not sure. Any comments or suggestions?

All the slots are sized for 3/8" tool bits but I figure that 5/16" and perhaps 1/4" will fit also. If these work out OK, I will make some more for other style cutters later (cut off, etc.)

Gunsmith, I have never smoked. My uncle owned a small drug store in Mississippi and he and my dad gave me a local brand cigarette once. I believe it was called a Picayune. Had a kick like a mule. They laughed for hours. I have never smoked since.

The table is an old one at work. I have no idea who or what made the burn marks. You use what you have.

Jim, What could possibly replace a SB9?

Thanks to all for the encouragement. More pix soon.

Paul A.

Paul Gauthier
05-13-2004, 07:52 PM
Lookin good, can't wait to see this one finished. So far I am mystified as to how this one works.

Paul G.

05-16-2004, 08:46 PM
Paul, beautiful job! Thanks for sharing your work with us.

Doc Nickel
05-17-2004, 03:12 PM
Hey Paul! Not sure what you have in mind for the locking mechanism, but reading this I thought of two possibles.

One, drill/mill/bore a round, vertical hole on the post/block centerline, in line with the rear corner (that you say you were going to saw off.)

Have a rod that closely fits in there, which acts as your indexing/antirotation "key". Could make it lock either by slitting the block on the diagonal and putting in a pinch bolt, or drilling it from the side and using a screw that pushes on the rod.

The other idea is to cut a standard, wide keyway in the blocks, and a key slot in the post. But taper one of them toward the centerline of the post and use a key machined as a wedge. You could tighten it with an allen screw that pulls the wedge down, perhaps.

Ahh, just free-associating. Pay it no mind. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif


Paul Alciatore
05-19-2004, 02:48 AM
Doc, too late on the suggestion. I had already cut the corners off.

I have milled a flat on the Post and have cut the rear corners off the tool holders and milled a matching flat there.


One side of the cut on the holders is about 0.02" lower than the other. The high side will have a clamp bolted on with two screws and the low side will have a single, larger screw or stud for tightening it in place. I am hoping that this will provide a positive indexing action that will allow a tool holder to be loosened and/or removed and locked back in exactly the same position in much the same manner as a dovetail mounted holder.

I'm still debating on the thickness of the clamps. Needs to be as stiff as possible and yet have enough flex to allow a few thousanths of movement for locking. 3/8", 1/2", more?

Paul A.

G.A. Ewen
05-19-2004, 08:30 AM
Looks to be a truly unique design. Most impressive. If you like I could test it for you when it's finished. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//tongue.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif