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Drill-quill tailstock?

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  • Drill-quill tailstock?

    I have a Hardinge HSL lathe- the little "speed lathe" with the stubby bed. It's been very useful for quite a few projects, but I have one coming up where I need to do some very fine drilling. The spindle can hit 3K RPM and with a good collet, effectively zero runout, but I have no easy easy way to drill. Best I can do right now is either just hold the drill in an small ER holder in a toolpost, and mount that either to one of those short lever slides or the standard X/Y cross slide.

    What I'd like, is basically a tailstock with a drill-press style quill. Obviously the quill doesn't need a turning spindle, just a small Morse socket like a standard lathe tailstock.

    I'm sure I could eventually fabricate something out of plate or Durabar and the like, but I've been trying to think of a shortcut. What out there could I get- preferably inexpensively- and chop up or mod to make such a thing? Doesn't have to be pretty, just has to work.

    Toyed with the idea of just getting a cheap box-store drill press, but the smallest one locally is much too big. The other idea is to grab a random tailstock off eBay or something, mod or fab a base to make it fit the HSL dovetail, and set up the quill with a lever- action feed. (I really only need 1-2" of travel.) Theoretically I could also do it with something like the tailstock for a dividing head.

    Any other ideas?

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

  • #2
    could you use a small pneumatic cylinder with a drill chuck attached and use flow control ?

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    • #3
      What about start with a “micro” arbor press or a reloading type press? You’ll still have to make up a base but it’s a decent start.

      I don’t know what the precision is on the small arbor presses but google images shows some round ram ones that look like they would work fairly well.
      Last edited by oxford; 04-04-2022, 08:04 PM.

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      • #4
        I don't necessarily need "automated"- I'd actually prefer to have some "feel" to it. The drills are going to be sub-1/16", not incredibly tiny, but small enough I'd like to feel the action.

        The tailstock off my Sheldon, for example, is just low enough I could theoretically make a "saddle" that clamps to the dovetail, and the tailstock then bolts to it. The two issues there is that the tailstock has a touch more slop than I'd like for this sensitive an operation, and it's still just a handwheel. Besides the limited 'feel' there's the slow retract and whatnot to clear chips.

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

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        • #5
          Arbor press is an interesting idea, hadn't thought of that one... Hmmm... Reloading press? Less likely, but might still be worth a look...

          Doc.

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

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          • #6
            Use your Omniturn.....?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Doc Nickel View Post
              Arbor press is an interesting idea, hadn't thought of that one... Hmmm...
              Some if the round ram ones I saw use a pretty small diameter ram. You may be able to turn/grind the correct Jacobs taper right on to the end of it to mount a chuck.

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              • #8
                Mount a drill chuck to the crosslide, a rigid tool post with a DRO and tool library in the DRO for X offset.

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                • #9
                  Hardinge did make a lever tailstock that fit the dovetail bed lathes, it may be worth seeing if you can get your hands on one for a fair price before designing your own. Apparently they also made an attachment called a End Working Slide I think that could hold a 5/8 turret tool and was operated by a lever. I've never seen one for sale, but I've not looked specifically for one. If you can't find one of those then getting a handwheel tailstock and converting it is probably your easiest route.
                  Last edited by Tom S; 04-04-2022, 08:44 PM.
                  Cayuga, Ontario, Canada

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                  • #10
                    Quick and Dirty ?
                    One off, or multiple uses ?
                    Automatic and total manual
                    Morse taper a needed demand, of just a benefit .
                    Size of drills to be handled ?
                    Other than drills to be employed ?
                    Rigidity, Accuracy, or both ?
                    Materials available or would be used ?

                    As a manufacturing Engineer, those are just some of my thoughts.
                    So the answer lies with you , but I ran into this when working , so have a few thoughts
                    to provoke your thoughts for a solution. Usually I had no time(!) at work so how much you wish to invest
                    again will be your determination

                    Two thoughts for you for quick builds
                    Get a wood block and square it ( say 6 x 6 x 4 ) ---Square !
                    Mill a slot/channel the bottom so it will slide on the ways without slop sideways
                    Place your largest collet and ball endmill in the spindle and slide the wood block into it , making a hole matched to Spindle C/L
                    Remove block and place in Mill. Put a dowel in the Mill spindle that matches the hole and bring down into the hole. Now clamp the work (Block )
                    and bore the block out to say .750. You now have a easy sliding.snug Block with Spindle Centerline dead nuts on.
                    Either make a 3/4 quill with a drill chuck on one end centered ( threaded ?) , or find a tailstock quill with MT built in

                    Second--. Similar block or Aluminum Plate (s) and bore the vertical plate . ( Think of a Angle plate with one leg vertical and facing the headstock )
                    Now Bore out the aluminum larger . then place the angle back in front of the headstock. . Now use a dowel again in spindle collet and on the angle,
                    Mount a small router or Dremel Tool with same collet size. layout mounting holes and attached --again, dead nuts allignment.
                    This also gives you a rotary powered tool in alignment with spindle to be slide along the ways

                    Rich

                    Green Bay, WI

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                    • #11
                      Use your Omniturn.....?
                      -I should, but this current project is just a few pieces, and I don't yet trust my programming skills to drill something this small and delicate.

                      Some if the round ram ones I saw use a pretty small diameter ram. You may be able to turn/grind the correct Jacobs taper right on to the end of it to mount a chuck.
                      -Been looking at a couple on eBay. Problem is, even the small ones will cost me a fortune to ship up here to Alaska. And I have no real guarantee on how well the quill fits. A little slop is no biggie for an arbor press, kind of a big deal on a .050" drill.

                      I'd have no issue drilling and cutting a Morse taper into the end, either- possibly even doing the final ream in place, to make it as concentric as possible.

                      Mount a drill chuck to the crosslide, a rigid tool post with a DRO and tool library in the DRO for X offset.
                      Minus the DRO, that's kind of the current setup. Hardinge lever cross slide, with one of their little "taper slides" on top of that. (The big slide is only X axis, and I need to drill in Z, of course.) The taper slide is carefully aligned with the spindle axis, and carries a little 0XA dovetail toolpost. That in turn has an ER-11 collet holder in a boring bar block.

                      At max stroke, I get a smidge over 1" of travel, which is enough, but it's all kind of fiddly

                      Hardinge did make a lever tailstock that fit the dovetail bed lathes, it may be worth seeing if you can get your hands on one for a fair price before designing your own.
                      -Yep. Problem is, those are intended for the full size DV-59 lathes. Mine's a considerably shorter HSL- the bed's only like 12" long. I actually saw a picture at one point of a regular DV tailstock that somebody had tried to mount on an HSL- the fully-retracted quill, hard up against the spindle nose, left about a third of the base hanging off the end of the bed.

                      I've been poking around on eBay, and found a couple bare tailstock castings for cheap- off things like 9" Southbends or 10" Logans. It might be as easy as replacing the quill lock cotter with a custom-fitted pinion gear, and making a new barrel with rack teeth along one side.

                      The handwheel or spider would be facing up, sure, but that's workable.

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

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Gotcha. Didn't realize the HSL was to short for a tailstock. How deep are the holes you're drilling? Would attaching a Model E slide like this one work? Might be a it of work to tram it in and center the chuck, but it wouldn't be to costly or require a lot of work. Probably pretty sensitive as well.


                        Find many great new & used options and get the best deals for HARDINGE MODEL E CROSS SLIDE W/ DRILL CHUCK FLA 3/8 " CAP at the best online prices at eBay! Free shipping for many products!
                        Cayuga, Ontario, Canada

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                        • #13
                          Quick and Dirty ?
                          -If there was something I could throw together in the next couple days, sure. But the more I think about it, the more I'd like to make a dedicated piece.

                          One off, or multiple uses ?
                          -Ideally, something that could be used regularly, if need be.

                          Automatic and total manual
                          -Manual. Eventually I probably will be entrusting this kind of thing to the CNCs, but I'm just not there yet.

                          Morse taper a needed demand, of just a benefit .
                          -On this particular machine, it'll basically ONLY be used for drilling. The bed's too short and there's no carriage to turn between centers, and using the Hardinge cross slide puts the handwheel for the Z axis right where the tailstock would need to be.

                          Size of drills to be handled ?
                          -In this case, tiny. Probably sub-sixteenth. I have other lathes in the shop that can do bigger. I need one with a little more accuracy for the weeny stuff.

                          Other than drills to be employed ?
                          -Not apart from maybe a spot drill or centering drill.

                          Rigidity, Accuracy, or both ?
                          -For a 1/16" drill or smaller, rigidity is basically a given, unless I'm making the thing out of balsa wood, or trying to 3D print it. Accuracy is paramount.

                          Materials available or would be used ?
                          -That's kind of the question. I could buy some chunks of Dura-Bar and braze together something that looks like a tailstock, then machine everything to fit. I could also do welded or bolted plate steel, or welded or bolted aluminum.

                          I like the idea of using another tailstock casting off some other lathe, so that it looks like a tailstock, and that some of the machining is kind of already done. (The bore, etc.)

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

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                          • #14
                            How deep are the holes you're drilling? Would attaching a Model E slide like this one work?
                            -That's basically what I'm using now, except with an 0XA (miniature Aloris style) toolpost and an ER holder rather than a chuck. It works, but it's a bit fiddly to get- and keep- lined up.

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

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              You'd need a riser block but for small stuff what about something like the lever tail stock from a Taig on a riser to lift it to your center height? New rams with various chucks or other options could be swapped easily and you have your choice of using the lever which also stops the shaft from turning or using directly hand grip and pressure to control the drilling.

                              Another option is that you do up a holder something like the one Joe Pie used for doing small holes. The hand hold on the chuck would be fine at 1/16 or even a little bigger. And it doesn't get much more sensitive than actually pushing by hand and feeling the back torque. Another nice chuck are the little keyless ones that Dremel still sells. They fit over an 8mm by something thread which would need to be single pointed of course. Some folks hate them but I find that as long as they are kept clean that they work nicely.

                              You would still need SOMETHING to mount the tube into for the arbor of the chuck. A temporary tail stock could be made up from some wood and drilled by a drill in a collet directly in the machine. It would likely wear or even warp out of shape after some time. But it could easily work for the one job over a few days.
                              Last edited by BCRider; 04-04-2022, 09:39 PM.
                              Chilliwack BC, Canada

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