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Pics of my DRO installation

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  • Pics of my DRO installation

    I recently put a used Mitutoyo DRO on my Bridgeport and thought I'd post a few picks of the install. Before I got the mill, it had this exact model of DRO on it, so the holes for the Y axis were already there, which was convenient. I am at a loss as to how they had the X scale mounted though, since there were no holes drilled on the back side of the table (maybe they had it mounted on the front t-slot ).

    Anyway the first order of business was drilling and tapping two holes to mount the reader head on the saddle. They needed to be 1/4-20, 1.125" apart, and .750" down from the bottom of the table. I thought about using the right angle head, but the saddle doesn't move in the x axis, so there would be no easy way of getting the 1.125" spacing. So I decided to mount my bench top drill press to the table and let it do the drilling. I measured the distance from the spindle center line to the post of the drill press, then subtracted the thickness of the mill table and the .750" measurement (how far down the holes needed to be from the table) and found I needed to elevate the drill press .588" from the table. I proceeded to make two blocks with a radius matching the diameter of the drill press post that would elevate it the needed .588".



    The first pic is showing the setting of the radius on the boring head. The adjustable parallel is set at the diameter of the drill press post. The fixed jaw is found with an edge finder and the table is moved so the spindle center line is at the center of that measurement. Then the boring head is adjusted (about as far out as it could go actually) until the cutting edge catches a piece of paper against the fixed jaw.



    The thickness of the paper is accounted for and the radius is machined on both pieces until the correct thickness was reached (measured with a tubing micrometer).



    Then the drill press is clamped down lightly, indicated in, and tightened the rest of the way so the holes could be drilled. I had to remove the belt guard from the drill press to make it clear the mill ways, and also had to take off the table and base. These are easily the two most labor intensive holes I have ever drilled.

    Continued in the next post...
    Stuart de Haro

  • #2
    Dro

    Hornluv thanks for posting this unusual solution to a problem. Very interesting and innovative!!

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    • #3
      Once those holes were done, i could use the right angle head to drill the ones to hold the scale. I had to rotate the turret one way, then the other in order to reach that part of the table.



      If you've never used a right angle head before, there are machined spots on each side of the head for indicating it in. Then, when it's straight, you tighten the two bolts on the side which clamps it against the quill and keeps it from rotating.



      Once I had it straight, I found the edges of the table and moved to the right spot to drill and tap the holes.



      I obviously couldn't tap these holes under power, so I used a drill chuck on a straight shank and left the collet loose to just guide it. It worked like a charm.

      Last edited by hornluv; 05-23-2011, 06:31 PM.
      Stuart de Haro

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      • #4
        While I enjoyed seeing a bridgeport using it's envelope it looks like an awful amount of work. I've installed DRO slide mounts using a drill and tap guide block and a hand drill with no problems.

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        • #5
          Methinks you overthunk it!

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          • #6
            Originally posted by gda
            While I enjoyed seeing a bridgeport using it's envelope it looks like an awful amount of work. I've installed DRO slide mounts using a drill and tap guide block and a hand drill with no problems.
            If I were to drill holes in my mill, I'd be more than willing to sacrifice a bit of work to be absolutely sure that everything's as accurate as possible.

            -Matt

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            • #7
              Yeah, a little overkill!

              I just transfer punch, center punch, and then hand drill. There is all sorts of adjustment available.

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              • #8
                Yeah, I kind of figured I could have done it a simpler way, but I wanted to make sure it worked right the first time. These scales and the reader heads have a little bit of leeway vertically as far as hole position goes, but very little side to side so I wanted to be sure. Besides, I had access to the tools.
                Stuart de Haro

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                • #9
                  If you had enough room to use the right angle head to tap, why not use that to drill as well?
                  "I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer -- born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in the steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace, and propelled by compressible flow."

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by gda
                    While I enjoyed seeing a bridgeport using it's envelope it looks like an awful amount of work. I've installed DRO slide mounts using a drill and tap guide block and a hand drill with no problems.
                    Me to about 10 of them over the years, while you were very creative it was definitely overkill.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by hornluv
                      ...



                      ..
                      From now on, every time I see a "mill/drill" advertised... I'll be thinking of you
                      http://fixerdave.blogspot.com/

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                      • #12
                        Given that the accuracy of the DRO will determine the accuracy of everything you make forevermore, IMO it's worth making an extra effort to be sure it's as correct as possible.

                        But I'm probably too compulsive.
                        ----------
                        Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
                        Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
                        Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
                        There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
                        Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
                        Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

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                        • #13
                          Well, it was a little over the top but what the heck. It gave you a chance to use all the tools you could and use a little creative thought.
                          It's only ink and paper

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                          • #14
                            Very creative, good work. I used a rule, punch, hammer and hand drill. One thing is that I did go through the trouble to level my mill to a high degree. That helps a lot mounting things like scales.
                            James Kilroy

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                            • #15
                              well i know the consensus is that the job was a little overthought,...but the work was done very well and if you apply that level of commitment to all your projects i bet you turn out some great jobs, most of us quick fix merchants have a treasure trove of knackered bits under the bench!!
                              well done, i particularly liked the bridgy drilling itself!, as sir Jhon would say, 'bout time it did somthing useful'
                              regards
                              mark

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