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Thread: Top slide alternative

  1. #1
    olderdan's Avatar
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    Top slide alternative

    Nothing new about this idea but here is my version made from 1/2inch M/S plate and a square block.
    The method of standard topslide clamping by side screws has often been criticised for spreading the crosslide and affecting gib adjustment, this makes use of T slots assuming you have them and has no side effects of that nature, it can also be used as a rear toolpost.
    If made to the same height your topslide, your tool holder settings remain the same.
    The need for this was brought about while turning a solid pillar drill column to replace the flimsy tubular one supplied, I was having trouble maintaining consistency over 36 inches on a 2 inch dia.
    I have experienced improved performance and finish and also parting off by eliminating three possible movement faces (base, slide and feed nut) and as a bonus it does not clash with the tailstock. I now only use the topslide for taper turning,
    I finally managed to obtain a good finish and parallel within .001 in a pre-toughened cast steel called O8S, an odd choice perhaps but I had some in stock.


    Top slide alternative-imgp0216.jpgTop slide alternative-screen-shot-09-16-16-04.56-pm.png

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    PJs
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    Hi Olderdan! Thanks for sharing this. It is certainly a substantial and rigid setup with the double t's, plus the thickness of materials. I also imagine your finishes have improved as well as consistency. I'm not familiar with O8S cast steel and when I looked it up I kept getting ASTM A27. Nice hunks of scraps you had there though.

    Thanks! ~PJ
    ‘‘Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.’’
    Mark Twain

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    Hi PJ
    Thanks for the interest, I cant find O8S either, this stuff used to be used for doming dies and when my firm lost the contract I was given the remaining stock.
    I cant heat treat it so has to be used as is, i'm talking forty years ago so now obsolete I guess.
    Regards
    Olderdan

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    Hi olderdan,

    Nice improvement to your cross slide. Also, I like your lathe with T-nut slots built into the cross slide and handy for line boring operations. I remember Keith Fenner has a large Clausing lathe with T-nut slots on the forward and rear carriage aprons for attaching special purpose fixtures to do line boring (see his YouTube video My go to Bar Part 2). You have provided an idea for another way to add an additional thick plate with T-nut slots to my lathe cross slide.

    Interesting work,

    Thanks, Paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by olderdan View Post
    Hi PJ
    Thanks for the interest, I cant find O8S either, this stuff used to be used for doming dies and when my firm lost the contract I was given the remaining stock.
    I cant heat treat it so has to be used as is, i'm talking forty years ago so now obsolete I guess.
    Regards
    Olderdan
    Thanks for the additional info Olderdan. Doming dies can definitely be hard but looks like you did some nice work with it in its hardened state. Materials anymore change by the day so it's not surprising based on that age.

    Thanks again! ~PJ
    ‘‘Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.’’
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    I used to use a steel called Bearcat. Great stuff for making forming dies Some called it carpenter S7 It is ANSI S7 tool steel the Bearcat and Carpenter S7 are trade names of Bethlehem Steel
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/

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    Thanks olderdan! We've added your Top Slide Alternative to our Lathe Accessories category,
    as well as to your builder page: olderdan's Homemade Tools. Your receipt:




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    Alan, I had two large 4 sided two posts which I machined to the equivalent of your block and plate. My cross slide doesn't have Tee-slots so I drilled and tapped it to take the blocks. One for a front QC tool post and the other for a rear four sided tool post which is permanently loaded with a parting tool, a turning tool and a small drill chuck with a spotting drill. Unfortunately I have a screw on chuck so I don't run the lathe backwards, which means that the tools on the rear post have to be unsidedown and hence mounted high up.
    Occasionally there is not enough room between the two tool posts and then I just remove one, it only takes a few seconds.

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    Every time you post a picture of your T-Slot cross slide, I remember how envious I am. If you ever go into your shop and it is gone....

    Just kidding,

    John

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    Still looking for 'that' hunk of scrap.

    Good You Tube video here from ROBRENZ about the subject.


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