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new dial for me 12" craftsman / atlas lathe

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  • new dial for me 12" craftsman / atlas lathe

    after seeing the post by daryl bane this morning about his new cross feed dial, i was reminded that i need to do something with the one on my 12 in craftsman / atlas lathe. when i got it a couple years ago, i attempted to make the lines and numbers more visible to my old eyes, using magic marker, hoping to enhance them. it kinda worked but the little dial is only 1 inch in diameter and divided into 100 little marks with numbers every .010.

    so i checked how big i could make a new dial and figured that 1-1/2" was about max unless i never let the cross slide try to get that far out. . .

    then it dawned on me that i have no way to engrave the numbers nor do i have a way to index the lathe into 100 parts. this brings up the question :

    how much would someone on this list charge to make one for me with the numbers engraved in it like the orig. one but of course deeper and larger ? like 1-1/2" diameter by 1/2" wide with a .375 hole ?

    stainless like daryl used would be fantastic but i suppose anything is better than what i have currently that i can't read.

    are there any takers out there ?

  • #2
    Get the latest copy of HSM, there's a very good article in there on making a new dial for a lathe. All of your concerns are addressed.


    • #3
      There are plenty of solutions. One would be to buy new dials made for the Atlas, one supplier is here:

      I've seen trophy shops with rotary engravers who could engrave a dial quickly and inexpensively, also industrial suppliers who might be wheedled into a single dial. If all you need are some lines scratched into a dial that's fairly easy on a dividing head.

      I've also seem folks lay out the divisions and markings in a drawing program and print them at various sizes until one fit the outside of the dial. After gluing it in place some clear epoxy will protect it for some time.

      Finally, you can set it up and do it on most any lathe. Start with a bandsaw blade, count out 100 teeth and cut a disk whose circumference the blade just fits. Mount the blade on the disk, the disk on the back of a chuck and your work in the chuck. With something stopping on each tooth of the blade you'll have your 100 marks evenly divided.


      • #4
        Tallgrass Tools offers kits and completed assemblies in several stages of completion for replacing the feed dials. Jan's workmanship is excellent.
        Jim H.


        • #5

          The dial design I have is a two piece unit that lets you zero-set easily. The kit levels are 1) drawings, instructions and materials, 2) Like the first but with dial graduated and number stamped, or 3) finished ready to install.

          I'm also amenable to special machining or other levels to meet customer needs. If you just want the simple 1/2" x 1-1/2" dia. with 3/8" hole graduated and stamped I can supply that too. Numbers the other direction? Direct reading graduations? No problem.

          Jan - Tallgrass Tools
          "People will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time they will pick themselves up and carry on" : Winston Churchill