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Thread: Quick and dirty tracer lathe

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Default Quick and dirty tracer lathe

    Hi Everyone,

    Years ago I had to run a job that had a 14 inch long taper from 3/8 to 5/8 diameter. Problem was I had no taper attachment.

    Having worked in a toolroom where we had several lathes with hydraulic tracer attachments I realized I might be able to do the same thing without the hydraulics.

    I made two risers to hold a piece of flat bar at the angle I needed:





    Then with a dial indicator fastened to the crosslide I could run the machine and manually keep the needle on zero with the power feed advancing the carriage:



    I also made a follower rest and made the cut all in one pass:



    These photos are only to show how I did it. The actual parts were around twenty inches long.

    More in next post..........................................


    I've been wanting to try using the same idea to duplicate a complex shape and this Last year I made a couple of ball cranks for a friend's Elgin mill.
    Last edited by jhe.1973; 09-22-2019 at 03:06 PM.
    Best wishes to ya’ll.

    Sincerely,

    Jim

    "To invent you need a good imagination and a pile of junk" - Thomas Edison

    "I've always wanted to get a job as a procrastinator but I keep putting off going out to find one so I guess I'll never realize my life's dream. Frustrating!" - Me

  2. #2
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    Default

    This shows the high tech coolant system:



    This is right after turning without any filing or other finishing:



    For the longest time I have been itching to try this with a more complex shape, such as the compound curve of a ball crank handle. Last year I got the chance.

    Here is what I came up with and it worked way beyond what I thought it would:



    I used a more sensitive indicator and a slower spindle speed than I had done with the long taper. Another view:



    Finished parts in the next post.............................
    Best wishes to ya’ll.

    Sincerely,

    Jim

    "To invent you need a good imagination and a pile of junk" - Thomas Edison

    "I've always wanted to get a job as a procrastinator but I keep putting off going out to find one so I guess I'll never realize my life's dream. Frustrating!" - Me

  3. #3
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    Default

    All it took on the compound curves was a small amount of emery cloth while still in the lathe and the final finish came up easily with a buffer:



    The three balls and taper shaft were done in another lathe with a ball turning attachment.
    Best wishes to ya’ll.

    Sincerely,

    Jim

    "To invent you need a good imagination and a pile of junk" - Thomas Edison

    "I've always wanted to get a job as a procrastinator but I keep putting off going out to find one so I guess I'll never realize my life's dream. Frustrating!" - Me

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    N.E. Arizona
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    One more thing I just remembered, these risers can be used in the front as shown or on the rear of the bed where the template is more out of the way.
    Best wishes to ya’ll.

    Sincerely,

    Jim

    "To invent you need a good imagination and a pile of junk" - Thomas Edison

    "I've always wanted to get a job as a procrastinator but I keep putting off going out to find one so I guess I'll never realize my life's dream. Frustrating!" - Me

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default

    That's great ingenuity but I don't know how you managed to use a follower rest on a tapered part. The rest would follow a parallel path whilst the part gets larger in diameter.
    Peter - novice home machinist, modern motorcycle enthusiast.

    Denford Viceroy 280 Synchro (11 x 24)
    Herbert 0V adapted to R8 by 'Sir John'.
    Monarch 10EE 1942

  6. #6
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    Jan 2016
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    looks like the follower rest is bolted to the side of the carriage, not to the cross slide.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter. View Post
    That's great ingenuity but I don't know how you managed to use a follower rest on a tapered part. The rest would follow a parallel path whilst the part gets larger in diameter.
    You'd use tapered roller bearings....

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by johansen View Post
    looks like the follower rest is bolted to the side of the carriage, not to the cross slide.
    Which is usual, and I just re-read the post that it was cut in one pass which explains the use of the follower. If there were multiple passes it obviously wouldn't work.
    Peter - novice home machinist, modern motorcycle enthusiast.

    Denford Viceroy 280 Synchro (11 x 24)
    Herbert 0V adapted to R8 by 'Sir John'.
    Monarch 10EE 1942

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
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    430

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jhe.1973 View Post
    ...
    This is right after turning without any filing or other finishing:



    ...
    Is it me or is there a corner about a 1/4 of the way from the right? Maybe that "... manually keep[ing] the needle on zero ..." is not as easy as it sounds?

  10. #10
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    Here is a solution I came up with for turning long tapered and contoured parts...

    http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/thr...r-Manual-Lathe

    http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/thr...13#post1211213

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