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  • Toolpost indicator holder

    Certainly not a new or unique design, but here's my take on an indicator holder for my AXA toolposts.



    Been meaning to make one of these for years, I always have to cobble something out of my box of mount parts when I want to dial in something in the 4-jaw. This way, as that's a spare indicator, I can just leave it set up and hang it near the lathe to use at will.

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

  • #2
    Looks nice. You're gonna like it. And if you have a second chuck wrench, dialing in a four-jaw is almost fun, and quick. I set mine up with zero directly to the right. That way the needle tracks the part position. If the needle is towards me I need to push the part away, etc. Makes it very intuitive, and I never get mixed up.

    Comment


    • #3
      Super tidy! And if you mount the holder on the other dovetail and flip the gauge over it would also do faces.

      I saw that style in a few videos. But in the end I opted for a bar style design that I found on a YT video which gave me more options. One end holds the dial gauge for OD's and faces. The other can mount a DTI with the stem adapter for doing ID's.

      Randy that is a BRILLIANT IDEA! ! ! ! Will be shifting my own zero the next time I use it. THANKS!
      Chilliwack BC, Canada

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      • #4
        Thanks for that idea Randy - been using a dial gauge for 55 years, and that never occurred to me...

        Ian
        All of the gear, no idea...

        Comment


        • #5
          I saw that style in a few videos. But in the end I opted for a bar style design that I found on a YT video which gave me more options. One end holds the dial gauge for OD's and faces. The other can mount a DTI with the stem adapter for doing ID's.
          -Curious what you'd need to indicate a face, for.

          I could see it if you're holding a thin disc or something, and want to make sure it runs concentric, but that's what chuck spiders, spacers, roller tools or soft jaws are for.

          I do want to make one, as you note, for a DTI to do bores- that's another one I'm always having to cobble for. I have five or six of the things, might as well make 'em useful.

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

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Doc Nickel View Post

            -Curious what you'd need to indicate a face, for.



            Doc.
            Not being a dick, (really)
            but I indicate faces all time
            if I am chucking something
            like a pulley or flange.
            I have a dedicated dovetail
            holder with an indicator like
            yours, that the indicator has
            a 1/4" stud off the back, and
            it can turn 180° in the holder
            so I can flip it and indicate
            the side or face of a part.
            It is in one of my videos,
            I don't have a pic to post right
            this minute.

            -D
            Last edited by Doozer; 06-16-2022, 10:11 AM.
            DZER

            Comment


            • #7
              Mine is not nearly as sculpted and artistic as Doc Nickel's, but still quite functional. It occupies a holder that was previously a knurling tool that, once modified, proved too hard to tap for set-screws, limiting its usefulness. Far right in this picture.

              Click image for larger version

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              It's all mind over matter.
              If you don't mind, it don't matter.

              Comment


              • #8
                One could make the holder so that the indicator can be turned.

                Another idea is to simply have a flat steel plate as a holder, so that any magnetic base or magnet-backed indicator can be used, turned at any angle wanted. (you may want to use a magnet housed in a "cup" to minimize stray fields for back-mounted magnets)
                CNC machines only go through the motions.

                Ideas expressed may be mine, or from anyone else in the universe.
                Not responsible for clerical errors. Or those made by lay people either.
                Number formats and units may be chosen at random depending on what day it is.
                I reserve the right to use a number system with any integer base without prior notice.
                Generalizations are understood to be "often" true, but not true in every case.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Doc Nickel View Post

                  -Curious what you'd need to indicate a face, for.

                  I could see it if you're holding a thin disc or something, and want to make sure it runs concentric, but that's what chuck spiders, spacers, roller tools or soft jaws are for.

                  I do want to make one, as you note, for a DTI to do bores- that's another one I'm always having to cobble for. I have five or six of the things, might as well make 'em useful.

                  Doc.
                  You're right, it's not often needed for setting a part for machining. But I've used my lathe and a dial gauge to inspect items with a shoulder or flange for runout from damage or wear just often enough over the years that I like to have the ability if I can get it as a side benefit from the holder. And with a flip of the gauge and setting the holder on the other dovetail we can get this with some styles of holder. Yours qualifies for this. Some other similar designs don't.

                  When I got my AXA post a couple of years ago I saw the super slick dial holders made by folks that wrapped around the gauge in a similar manner as yours. And by golly they sure do look sexy. Yes, I might have issues...

                  But then I saw THIS VIDEO. I was drawn to the simplicity of it since it meant I didn't need to use a honking big hunk of material and, perhaps more importantly, I didn't need to tackle the dovetail at that moment. It was only part way into the video that I realized that I could just roll the dial gauge over and mount the holder on the other dovetail for faces. This realization freed up the other end which I set up to hold my back plunger Starrett gauge and the small stem from my DTI. In retrospect I wish that I had done the other end with nothing but holes in both axes for the DTI since I've never gotten close to using the Starrett gauge in the holder. If you've set up that style of Starrett at all for internal use the time it needs and the fussing about quickly suggests that the DTI with the stem is a MUCH nicer way to go.

                  Certainly not as slick as yours but I like that it's useable in so many ways and for so little time to make.

                  As part of setting up for the pics below I've decided that I'm going to plug the big cross hole for the Starrett gizmo and re-drill the cross hole for the DTI stem adapter. And make a new cotter to replace the one I've apparently lost or never got around to making.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Chilliwack BC, Canada

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Randy View Post
                    Looks nice. You're gonna like it. And if you have a second chuck wrench, dialing in a four-jaw is almost fun, and quick. I set mine up with zero directly to the right. That way the needle tracks the part position. If the needle is towards me I need to push the part away, etc. Makes it very intuitive, and I never get mixed up.
                    This. This is why I come here. To learn something I can actually use to help me out.

                    I do like to four jaw my parts as much as possible and in doing so I enjoy it and its fast. But this! Intuitive as all get out. And yes, I still get twisted around, this would make it fun and very fast. Thanks. JR

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by J Tiers View Post
                      One could make the holder so that the indicator can be turned.
                      You must have me blocked because I just said the same thing.

                      -D
                      DZER

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Doozer View Post

                        You must have me blocked because I just said the same thing.

                        -D
                        Nope, probably your post did not show up for me yet. Here in MO, we are behind the times. That'a not all I wrote, however.
                        CNC machines only go through the motions.

                        Ideas expressed may be mine, or from anyone else in the universe.
                        Not responsible for clerical errors. Or those made by lay people either.
                        Number formats and units may be chosen at random depending on what day it is.
                        I reserve the right to use a number system with any integer base without prior notice.
                        Generalizations are understood to be "often" true, but not true in every case.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Below is the link to my favorite tool post indicator holder.

                          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pi0oV3gVxG8

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            This is a great idea. Yea, others have already said it, but it bears repeating.

                            What I wonder is does this work with all DIs? Or do some of them revolve in the opposite direction?



                            Originally posted by Randy View Post
                            Looks nice. You're gonna like it. And if you have a second chuck wrench, dialing in a four-jaw is almost fun, and quick. I set mine up with zero directly to the right. That way the needle tracks the part position. If the needle is towards me I need to push the part away, etc. Makes it very intuitive, and I never get mixed up.
                            Paul A.
                            SE Texas

                            And if you look REAL close at an analog signal,
                            You will find that it has discrete steps.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by jmarkwolf View Post
                              Below is the link to my favorite tool post indicator holder.

                              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pi0oV3gVxG8
                              Now that is sweet! I particularly like the friction holding. I'm sensing the need for a Mk II version of my simple bar style. But it'll sit well down the list for now.

                              I'd make it like that one but with a second post out the other side which accepts the DTI easily for doing ID indicating.

                              Paul, I've yet to see a dial indicator that does not rotate the needle clockwise for the plunger moving in. But if such a beast does exist and works the other way (Southern Hemisphere anyone? ) then the solution for that person would be to set the 0 and position the needle sitting to the left instead of the right.

                              Given that there's not much new about machining to be found out there Randy's trick seems to be getting a rousing number of positive mentions. Is this in fact something pretty new? It's obviously largely unknown but is it one of those really old school things that the grumpy old guy in the back kept a secret? Or do we all owe Randy an E-beer?
                              Chilliwack BC, Canada

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