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Shop Made Tools

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  • Needed a boring head for 2-4 inch holes, i made one over the week end


    • Been meaning to take a picture of it...maybe I'll remember soon. I always loathe centering something round on the mill to drill a bolt circle or machine a usually involves cranking the knee way down so I can fit my co-ax in the quill, changing the collets, etc.... pain in the arse. I finally had enough of it so grabbed a piece of 4" aluminum round and machined turned a 3/4" tit on one end to fit in my collet (same collet I use for the drill chuck in my mill) and turned a 45" cone on the rest of it. The whole thing sticks out of the chuck about 3" or so. Stick the cone in the chuck and work the table around until the cone sits nicely in the centerhole of the workpiece. It gets you within .005", which is plenty accurate for most bolt circles (I do a lot of redrilling of brake rotors to change the bolt circle) , and takes about 1 minute to center something and get the drill chuck back in the quill. Add another minute to program the new PCD in the DRO...5 minutes per part to complete, including setup. Used to take me 20 or so minutes.


      • R8 slitting saw arbor.


        • I made a diamond wheel dresser for my bench grinders. It uses a 3/4 carat diamond nib (3/8 x 2") and a 1/4-28 SHCS as a pusher.


          • Just a couple of pics to show some of the accessories that I made for my shop made screw jacks ( previously posted)
            This shows a simple adapter that I made to hold my screw jacks on the bandsaw so I could set the band saw for a depth of cut that does not cut completely through a piece. This, along with elevating the far end gives me a cut that approaches parallel.

            Here are all the accessories: the band saw mount, a bigger head to go on top, and a grooved top to hold round stock. A sample of the screw jack I in the background.
            Last edited by ftownroe; 05-24-2013, 06:28 PM. Reason: couldn't figure how to add more than 1 pic at a time.
            Fred Townroe


            • Today I finished putting together my power drive for the mill (using a 24VDC window motor).

              Surprised how much torque this little motor has, as even running 1/2 voltage (dont yet have a 24VDC supply made) from a 12VDC charger I was barely able to stop it. Cant wait until the PWM gets here so I can set up the switches and feed controls


              • Today I decided to make the control unit for the power feed. Still waiting on the PWM to get here, but I can drill the front plate to add that when it gets here.


                • This is a steady rest used on a surface grinder to support smaller items (pins, drills, etc.) being ground. It minimizes vibration and bouncing quite efficiently.

                  Last edited by MichaelP; 05-31-2013, 11:15 PM.
                  WI/IL border, USA


                  • Cole drill

                    12 years after posting that a Cole drill would be a good homebrew project I finally made one.

                    Some ط 1 5/8 thick wall steel tube showed up where I work a few months ago, which I though would be ideal stock for the round parts, and that got me started. The top arm is 1½ square tube, the base is fabricated from 1 X 2 channel. I used a 1 1/8-12 screw for the feed screw. The holes in the wrench flats allow me to use the chuck key as a tommy bar. I dont' have a tap that size so I turned down a nut to weld to the screw housing. The column is ط1" CRS rod.

                    I'm sure it's not as rigid as the real thing, the fabbed parts surely aren't as beefy as the genuine castings. Hopefully that won't reduce its utility too much. If I ever acquire some larger CRS rod I can bore out the clamps to fit. That would help, no doubt.

                    I have no Idea what I'll use this for, but I'm sure that someday this will be just what I need for some oddball project!
                    Last edited by Randy; 06-01-2013, 11:42 PM.


                    • Mounted up the power feed controller and spent the day making the auto limit for it.

                      Made a runner bar for the adjustable stops (triggers left and right X axis movement in auto mode) and a bracket for the auto limit switches (need to add far limit safety switches later). Worked out well, just hope the 24V motor can live happily with the 24V full wave rectified and filtered supply (about 38VDC). After an hour it seemed happy (and not excessively hot)


                      • A quickie Gasket Cutter---needed a doz. of these for the pan on my horizontal bandsaw saw to prevent cutting fluid going everywhere but where it is suppose to go while it drains back in into the sump. Didn't have the large dia cutter so I made that and used a commercial 3/8" that I had. Quick to build and worked like a champ.


                        • I made my first gear a while ago, a nylon bevel gear for the feed on my lathe. Worked out amazingly well, and has been in service 6 or 7 years now. In keeping with the topic, I made the gear cutter to cut the gear, it's not too pretty but worked like a hot damn!
                          I spent most of my money on women and booze, the rest I just wasted.


                          • I recently made a "lantern chuck" for an acquaintance of mine, in exchange for another tool that I have wanted for a while. This is a hand-held lantern chuck, primarily used for holding tiny instrument screws so that the threaded ends can be worked on (shortened, shaped, polished, etc). It was a fun project, and the handle was my first attempt at turning wood which was also sort of fun.

                            This is the "business end" of the tool, along with the first of 3 lanterns that I made for it:

                            Testing out the first lantern, with a small screw held in place (you can see the threads rubbed a little bit, so I had to polish out the hole a tad):

                            And here it is with all 3 lanterns that I made (0.8mm, 0.6mm, and 0.4mm):


                            • After years of using an ad hoc carriage stop I took the time out to actually make something. It clamps to the ways and gives me either an indicator for just travel distance or a settable amount like an actual stop. Here's the old and new stops, old to the left, new mount and stop to the right.

                              The stop is just a shop made micrometer mechanism, 1/4 - 20 thread so it's 50 thousandths per revolution and graduated on the thimble. Roughly 1/2 inch or travel which is probably enough for most little recess or face off stuff. Much more and it gets to sticking out a ways.

                              Alternatively, it can be swapped for an indicator that I had lying around. This one has just over an inch of travel so I don't have to fuss so much about placement and travel distance. Actually the whole thing comes from parts more or less lying around. The graduations on the clamp handle on the top aren't relevant. That was simply a dial reject, but a handy piece to go on the shaft at that point. And I had in mind that I might want to place it on either side of the carriage in some instance or another.

                              Since this is an old Atlas/Craftsman with square ways it mounts just by slapping it on the ways and clamping with an eccentric. A retired bearing from one of my son's roller blades was a donor and works smoothly and securely. From a design standpoint the whole thing leaves something to be desired, being quite a ways out from center, but I might argue lamely in my defense that it does fit the general design philosophy of the Atlas lathe.

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