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Ideas On Making A Radius Cutting Tool

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  • #16
    Rich, you should send that entire setup with pictures to the home made tool thread.
    I can't count the times I could have used that setup.

    As I slap myself on the forehead and say "Why didn't I think of that"


    • #17
      That is a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

      My youtube:


      • #18
        Didn't think about posting it elsewhere ?

        It can be used in so many ways.
        I had a 1943 LeBlonde Lathe and it had a precision boss with threaded mounting holes under the rear way.
        It was used during the WW II and had a tracer attachment, but it made a wonderful way to mount a C shaped block in back of the rear way, sort of like a taper attachment . So I started doing that back in the 80's
        With my current lathes, i have to use a bar.
        Want to duplicate a spool valve ? no problem
        I mounted the damaged valve to the back support.
        Turned the OD, and then mounted a cutoff tool in the Aloris and an identical one as a follower.
        Now I just followed the pattern and duplicated the exact spool spacings and depths, without any longitudinal measurements. Had no Travel-dials back then.
        Works like a champ for convex or concave AND with boring bars when you need an internal profile .

        If you really want fancy, add a X and Y adjustment to the pattern mount.
        But me, i just set it up when I need it.

        Last edited by Rich Carlstedt; 11-20-2013, 11:53 PM. Reason: spell check
        Green Bay, WI


        • #19
          Rich, thanks for taking the time to post all those pics. Now I see what you were describing. It's like a tracer set up. I remember seeing a picture of a BP mill that had a tracer set up on it.

          After thinking for a couple seconds here......... I do have a Clausing 5890 series but the taper attachment and the Z axis scale would interfere with the clamping set up.

          Last edited by JoeLee; 11-21-2013, 01:11 AM.


          • #20

            Done in like 10 minutes in a little useless atlas lathe.


            • #21
              Originally posted by Rich Carlstedt View Post
              Ok Joe, I made some pics for you to follow.
              if I remember right, you also have an Atlas Clausing Lathe like mine ?

              Anyway , you start with a rigid structure clamped to the Lathe bed.
              Nothing fancy, just rigid. Here you see a simple setup . Two clamps and 3 blocks of the same height, and two bars ( Sq tubes shown)
              Note the clamping across both lathe ways near the tail stock at 90 degrees. This makes for a very strong setup.
              The main point is to have a parallel bar across the rear of the lathe's ways, and long enough to span the compounds movements.
              Now, once the bar is mounted, you place a follower bar on the Aloris using the 3/8-16 threaded hole for clamping.
              Note that I used an adjustable parallel under the follower bar to hold it straight and parallel at all times

              Now you can add a support block, like a 123 block for height or clamping as shown ( optional).
              Note that the Tool bit and the follower bar have the same tip radius !!!!!! This is important.
              The follower bar can be any convenient shop material as long as it is rigid and matches the tool bit. ( sharp tips in photo)

              Now mount the pattern you wish to follow.
              In this case, I have a .500 radius using a radius Gage. But you can us any pattern ( Gage used because of need here , but not for production unless it's one off) . Not knocking radius tools ( I have a home made one in the lower right of the first photo !), but with this setup, you can do radius's, forms , and tapers ! There is NO LIMIT,and it allows VERY accurate profiles to be made....if you have the master to follow. In this Pic, I have aligned the tool bit to the work centerline, and the follower to the profile centerline

              The last step is to check diameter as shown here below .
              Done ---ready for work and simple to create for those odd jobs.
              When loading stock, back the carriage about .01" off the right, and feed the stock up to the tool bit and away you go
              Now just feed your tool from left to right while feeding in and the form will only allow you top go is as far as the pattern.

              Works great for all kinds of odd stuff too.
              Very clever, a manual tracing setup.


              • #22
                In an ideal world, a circular form tool holder and ground form tool would be employed. Similar to:


                • #23
                  I made my radius form tool this morning, didn't take very long. At first I only needed to cut a 3/16" radius but then I figured I have three other corners to do something with so I might as well cut them for some other common radii. So I made 1/8", 3/16", 1/4" and 5/16". I made this out of 01. I didn't harden it yet but did try it on aluminum and it works great. I got just a little chatter at the very end, so to get around that I just turn the spindle very slowly by hand and it shaves it perfectly smooth removing any chatter. It also helped to feed it in a little at a time on the x & z.
                  The only thing I didn't take into account was that the Aloris BXA6 has a bolt in the center of it, I guess to keep it from spreading under clamping pressure, so the tool hangs out a bit further than I had anticipated. I suppose I could either use a different tool holder or shorten up the tool and recut it.

                  If any one wants to make one of these keep in mind that the cutting edge should be on the front left corner which means you'll have to flip the tool over to cut the other radii.
                  The other thing I messed up on is that the 5/16" radius cut is actually a bit smaller than it should be............ that's what happens when you pick up an end mill that has had the sides resharpened. One of the rare times when the OD of an end mill can mess up a job.



                  • #24
                    I just use a radius milling cutter held like the router bit, works ok, have seen a horizontal mill cutter used too, just a block held in the toolpost with a bolt and spacer, that was regularly used in work, especially with the big lathes, hard work making a rad cutter for a 2" radius, too much grinding before lunch


                    • #25
                      Here's a video of Tom using a milling cutter for a form cutter:


                      • #26
                        If I were to harden this tool is it necessary to draw it back??? or will it be too brittle if I don't??



                        • #27
                          For that application I would just leave it hard. It should be fine.
                          Kansas City area