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Thread: Shaper tooling and geometry...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    Default Shaper tooling and geometry...

    I just picked up a nice older textbook called Machine Shop Operations and Setups, stamped on the inside cover with the label declaring it the property of the "Area Vocational School of Staples, Minn", dated August 1st, 1969.

    It has an excellent section on shapers and planers, arguably better and more informative than the entirety of the South bend shaper booklet.

    Anyway, while it describes in detail tip grinds and suchlike, other than keyway cutters and similar items, 99% of the tools they show are standard Armstrong-style toolposts and tool holders. Even the picture of an interesting Cincinnati hydraulic contour shaper with three heads (for cutting three identical pieces) shows this kind of tool and holder.

    I'm looking to get a 16" shaper before too long, but it comes with zero tooling. I have an old rocker toolpost and some tool holders, but they're a bit undersized, meant for 9" and 10" lathes and taking 1/4" square bits. The shaper has a post, but no holders, so I figured I'd make one or two tool holders- and that, of course, got me thinking what would be the best kind of holder to make.

    I've seen several designs over the years, but I'm not sure just what works best- or is most versatile, or most rigid, or what have you. I've noted the "gooseneck" styles, and the ones that try to place the cutting edge on the pivot centerline with the clapper hinge- I understand the reasoning behind these, but is that geometry really necessary? None of my (now four) books on shapers even mention them.

    I have a large handful of 1/2" square HSS lathe tools (ground and unground) so I figured I'd make a toolholder that would accept these. Should I make a straight, right and left set, or one holder that allows the bit to index to different angles?

    Making the holder straight out from the post would be easiest, but if there's a valid reason to have the cutting edge behind the face and/or in line with the pivot, that wouldn't be a huge problem. Is it worth the effort?

    I'm sure I'll have more questions once I get the machine installed and running, but this'll get me thinking (well, more...)

    Doc.
    Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
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    Doc,

    fwiw, when I bought my shaper, it also didn't have any tooling. I first bought a handful of old HSS lathe tools with 1" x 5/8" shanks, pretty much the biggest the toolpost would accept. Car boot sale, about $2 each. Plan was to then make the posh toolholders with adjustable angles etc. So far, I've managed to do everything I need with the half dozen solid tools.

    What is the logic of putting the cutting tip on the clapper box centreline? I'd have thought you would want it in front of the CL, so that on the reverse stroke, the too lifts rather than rubbing or trying to jam.

    Is it to prevent dig-ins? I can't see how - a seated clapper box can't go any further back, can it?

    Personally, I'd go for the least possible overhang, simplest and most rigid setup that your shaper will allow.

    Ian

  3. #3
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    Well, the theory of having the cutting edge on center with the clapper pivot is that the tool, if it "digs in", will tend to pivot away from the workpiece, rather than wedging itself deeper.

    Except that, unless the clapper box has a lot of slop, or the ram ways are really loose (or the workpiece comes loose) there's no way for the tool to "dig in"- while in the cut, forces should be pretty well balanced and everything should be pretty rigid. So putting the tool on the pivot centerline sounds like an unneeded solution to a nonexistent problem.

    BUT... I also realize I'm a green newbie when it comes to shapers, and just because the idea isn't in a 40-year-old textbook doesn't mean it isn't a valid one.

    I've seen some of the various toolholders posted here and at PM, that allow the tool to be rotated to various angles, and this design typically tends to have the tool behind the toolholder arm, and thus closer to the clapper pivot. But here, I think it's more for construction convenience than the supposed geometrical convenience.

    The shaper I'm looking at appears to take a maximum of 5/8" by 1" toolholders as well- did you just get the Armstrong-style lathe-like toolholders, or was it something different?

    Doc.
    Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    You don't want to use a rocker on a shaper tool post. There's no center to adjust to. A simple ring will do.

    Also if you can, get the Armstrong holders made for carbide. They have zero tool rake. For a 16" shaper 3/8 tools are more appropiate. The holders come on eBay once in a while so look in every fre days.

    Also the Armstong #39(?) is a superior holder to the lathe tool holders. Keep an eye peeled for it. Williams make one sililar. For that matter they are easy to make.

    Izzat enough "alsos"?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forrest Addy
    You don't want to use a rocker on a shaper tool post. There's no center to adjust to. A simple ring will do.
    -Actually, I did know that. I just used that term to describe the type of toolpost, since I couldn't recall a more proper name. They're not called "Armstrong" toolposts are they? I thought that was just a popular manufacturer of the tool holders that go into the tool posts.

    And a "lantern" style is the square, blocky post, right?

    But I digress... I've been spoiled by using quickchange posts since the very beginning.

    Also the Armstong #39(?) is a superior holder to the lathe tool holders. Keep an eye peeled for it. Williams make one sililar.
    -I can't find any images of a "#39" holder- what makes it superior? Is there a specific shape I'm looking for?

    Doc.
    Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)

  6. #6
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    Palmer Alaska
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    Default Lantern or American style tool post


  7. #7
    IOWOLF Guest

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    Doc, How big is your shaper? I only ask because I have a spare clapper setup for a S/B or Atlas.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2002
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    Ashland City, TN
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    Doc, my South Bend came with no tooling as well, like the previously owned Atlas. I just ground a 3/8" square HHS tool bit and put it in the tool post with a 3/8" square "backer". The Atlas performed well for 16 years and the South Bend has been preforming satisfactorily for several years as well.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    258

    Default Armstrong & Williams shaper tools

    There's a PDF of various Armstrong and Williams offerings here:

    http://www.eurospares.com/graphics/T...er%20tools.pdf

    Well worth going to:

    http://www.eurospares.com/graphics/Tools/shapers

    to peruse the other offerings.

  10. #10
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    Feb 2007
    Location
    Newport, Oregon
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    Doc, I have been under the impression that shaper tool holders held the tool itself at 90 degrees to the work and lathe tool holders held the tool with the predetermined 15 degree rake. I have heard that you can use the lathe tool holders but your tool needs to be ground accordingly to subtract for the holders built in angle. Maybe someone can correct me if I am wrong. Jay

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