Metalworking (rec.crafts.metalworking) Discuss various aspects of working with metal, such as machining, welding, metal joining, screwing, casting, hardening/tempering, blacksmithing/forging, spinning and hammer work, sheet metal work.

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Old December 4th 04, 11:42 PM
Jack Hayes
 
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Default How Do You Center a Steady Rest ?

I purchased a fixed steady on e-bay and have used it (on a Standard Modern
11") several times for none critical jobs. But now I would like to know how
to properly center a work piece so that the center at the steady is in line
with the spindle center. In most cases the work piece would be held in the 3
jaw chuck and of course the other end supported by the steady.

Jack



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Old December 5th 04, 12:27 AM
Eric R Snow
 
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Default

On Sat, 4 Dec 2004 18:42:42 -0500, "Jack Hayes"
wrote:

I purchased a fixed steady on e-bay and have used it (on a Standard Modern
11") several times for none critical jobs. But now I would like to know how
to properly center a work piece so that the center at the steady is in line
with the spindle center. In most cases the work piece would be held in the 3
jaw chuck and of course the other end supported by the steady.

Jack

Greetings Jack,
I used to do a lot of steady rest work. The parts needed to be
accurate so the setup was critical. One thing I did was add an oiler
so there was a constant flow of oil to the pads on the steady. This
kept them cool besides lubricating them. So, here is one way to get it
really on center. Put the shaft in the lathe and indicate the outboard
end so that it runs dead true. Then, use two indicators, one on the
top of the shaft and the other at 90 degrees to the first. With the
lathe OFF turn the adjustment screws until the pads contact the shaft.
You will see the indicators move slightly. Adjust the steady rest pads
until you have the desired pressure and the indicators still read
zero. A less accurate way, but much faster and probably more use to
you is to get the outboard end running true with a center in place.
Then, with the shaft spinning, bring the pads into contact carefully
with the shaft. You will feel them making contact if you take care. If
the shaft runs out even a couple "tenths" and the pads are brought
into contact slowly enough you will feel the momentary contact. If you
have measured the runout beforehand you will then know just how much
more to turn the screws. Good luck!
Eric R Snow,
E T Precision Machine
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Old December 5th 04, 12:54 AM
Tim Wescott
 
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Default

Eric R Snow wrote:

On Sat, 4 Dec 2004 18:42:42 -0500, "Jack Hayes"
wrote:


I purchased a fixed steady on e-bay and have used it (on a Standard Modern
11") several times for none critical jobs. But now I would like to know how
to properly center a work piece so that the center at the steady is in line
with the spindle center. In most cases the work piece would be held in the 3
jaw chuck and of course the other end supported by the steady.

Jack


Greetings Jack,
I used to do a lot of steady rest work. The parts needed to be
accurate so the setup was critical. One thing I did was add an oiler
so there was a constant flow of oil to the pads on the steady. This
kept them cool besides lubricating them. So, here is one way to get it
really on center. Put the shaft in the lathe and indicate the outboard
end so that it runs dead true. Then, use two indicators, one on the
top of the shaft and the other at 90 degrees to the first. With the
lathe OFF turn the adjustment screws until the pads contact the shaft.
You will see the indicators move slightly. Adjust the steady rest pads
until you have the desired pressure and the indicators still read
zero. A less accurate way, but much faster and probably more use to
you is to get the outboard end running true with a center in place.
Then, with the shaft spinning, bring the pads into contact carefully
with the shaft. You will feel them making contact if you take care. If
the shaft runs out even a couple "tenths" and the pads are brought
into contact slowly enough you will feel the momentary contact. If you
have measured the runout beforehand you will then know just how much
more to turn the screws. Good luck!
Eric R Snow,
E T Precision Machine


Would it also work to get it into the steady, mount the indicators to
your cross-slide and run it up and down the bed while checking the
indicators?

--

Tim Wescott
Wescott Design Services
http://www.wescottdesign.com
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Old December 5th 04, 03:44 AM
Harold & Susan Vordos
 
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Default


"Tim Wescott" wrote in message
...
snip----

Would it also work to get it into the steady, mount the indicators to
your cross-slide and run it up and down the bed while checking the
indicators?


There is no better way to get a steady running properly than to do it while
the machine is running, much as Erik suggested. The problem with a steady
set up any other way is that you risk having the steady slightly off center,
which often results in the part walking out of your chuck.

To get a steady running properly, all you have to do is get your part in the
chuck, fairly well snugged, and have the steady in the desired position,
jaws slightly backed off. You don't even have to have the top of the steady
closed if you so desire. The part is highly unlikely to go anywhere while
you're adjusting the bottom two jaws, which you do under power at slow
speed. Do as Erik suggested, start tightening one of the jaws slowly,
stopping while you still feel the intermittent contact of the rotating part.
Go to the other jaw and do the same thing. At this point. very carefully
bring in one of the jaws until you feel it making constant contact. You'll
be able to feel it through the adjusting screw. Do this slowly so you don't
overshoot center. Do the same for the second jaw, then close the top and do
the same for the third. At this point you may wish to either tighten or
back off all three jaws ever so slightly to insure the proper amount of
running clearance, or lack thereof.

Setting up a steady by placing it next to the chuck and them moving it to
proper location is to be avoided.

Harold


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Old December 5th 04, 08:04 AM
Richard W.
 
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Default


"Harold & Susan Vordos" wrote in message
...

"Tim Wescott" wrote in message
...
snip----

Would it also work to get it into the steady, mount the indicators to
your cross-slide and run it up and down the bed while checking the
indicators?


There is no better way to get a steady running properly than to do it

while
the machine is running, much as Erik suggested. The problem with a steady
set up any other way is that you risk having the steady slightly off

center,
which often results in the part walking out of your chuck.

To get a steady running properly, all you have to do is get your part in

the
chuck, fairly well snugged, and have the steady in the desired position,
jaws slightly backed off. You don't even have to have the top of the

steady
closed if you so desire. The part is highly unlikely to go anywhere while
you're adjusting the bottom two jaws, which you do under power at slow
speed. Do as Erik suggested, start tightening one of the jaws slowly,
stopping while you still feel the intermittent contact of the rotating

part.
Go to the other jaw and do the same thing. At this point. very carefully
bring in one of the jaws until you feel it making constant contact. You'll
be able to feel it through the adjusting screw. Do this slowly so you

don't
overshoot center. Do the same for the second jaw, then close the top and

do
the same for the third. At this point you may wish to either tighten or
back off all three jaws ever so slightly to insure the proper amount of
running clearance, or lack thereof.

Setting up a steady by placing it next to the chuck and them moving it to
proper location is to be avoided.

Harold


Mount your magnetic base to the chuck, put the point of the indicator
against the shaft. Be a far away from the chuck as you can with out the
indicator being affected by gravity as you rotate the chuck. Giving you a
false reading. (Magnetic bases with fine adjustments are generally not good
for this.) Rotate the chuck by hand and read the indicator. It works kinda
like dialing in a 4 jaw chuck. Only you have 3 supports instead of 4. (Well
sometimes you have 4 supports on a big lathes.) Read the indicator in line
with the support and directly opposite the support. Adjust the supports
while reading the indicator movement. Adjust the supports of the steady rest
until the indicator reads zero all the way around. If anyone wants me to I
can post pictures to the drop box, if it's not clear.
Remember if you are not lined up properly the shaft will work out of
the chuck, which could get really exciting at high Rpm's.

Richard W.




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Old December 5th 04, 03:06 PM
Karl Townsend
 
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Default

Setting up a steady by placing it next to the chuck and them moving it to
proper location is to be avoided.


I made a whole bunch of idler rolls for my apple line water bin dump exactly
this way. Step one was to weld in a four inch long solid rod inside the end
of a 2" steel pipe. This rod was then turned to 1" for pillow block
mounting. The idlers are 6 foot long, the chuck wouldn't even begin to hold
it anywhere close. So, I set the bottom two jaws on a pipe stub next to the
chuck, then slid it out five feet and adjusted the top one just slightly
tight. I really wish I'd had a larger spindle hole for this job

Worked fer me. How would you have done it?

P.S. I did this on a five foot lathe. The steady was clear at the end of
the lathe. I built a special tool holder bracket so the cutting was actually
beyond the end of the lathe. Wild, but got the job done.

Karl



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Old December 5th 04, 05:45 PM
Clark Magnuson
 
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Default

With a 36" long 1.125" diameter rifle barrel blank, I have the barrel
mostly slid up into the headstock, dialed in on the bore in the 4 jaw,
and cut the outside to be round.
I take the barrel out, turn it around, dial in, and cut round the other
end of the barrel.
I slide the steady rest up next to the headstock and locate the three
roller bearing of my steady rest on the round part of the barrel.
I open the top of the steady rest, move it to the right end of the ways,
loosen the 4 jaw, slide the barrel out of the chuck partially to reach
the steady rest, dial in the chuck on the round part of the left end of
the barrel, and then clamp the steady rest on the round part of the
left end of the barrel.

When I made the bottom part of my steady rest, I was careful to build
everything very stiff. I can go from loose to fully tightened with 1/8
turn of the steady rest lock down.
If the steady rest can change height with how much it is tightened, that
is no good.

--
Be careful what you pray for, it can happen.

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Old December 5th 04, 05:49 PM
Clark Magnuson
 
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Default

Post ADCN

change from:
I open the top of the steady rest, move it to the right end of the ways,
loosen the 4 jaw, slide the barrel out of the chuck partially to reach
the steady rest, dial in the chuck on the round part of the left end of
the barrel, and then clamp the steady rest on the round part of the
left end of the barrel.


change to:
I open the top of the steady rest, move it to the right end of the ways,
loosen the 4 jaw, slide the barrel out of the chuck partially to reach
the steady rest, dial in the chuck on the round part of the left end of
the barrel, and then clamp the steady rest on the round part of the
right end of the barrel.




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Old December 5th 04, 06:12 PM
Eric R Snow
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On Sun, 5 Dec 2004 09:06:41 -0600, "Karl Townsend"
wrote:

Setting up a steady by placing it next to the chuck and them moving it to
proper location is to be avoided.


I made a whole bunch of idler rolls for my apple line water bin dump exactly
this way. Step one was to weld in a four inch long solid rod inside the end
of a 2" steel pipe. This rod was then turned to 1" for pillow block
mounting. The idlers are 6 foot long, the chuck wouldn't even begin to hold
it anywhere close. So, I set the bottom two jaws on a pipe stub next to the
chuck, then slid it out five feet and adjusted the top one just slightly
tight. I really wish I'd had a larger spindle hole for this job

Worked fer me. How would you have done it?

P.S. I did this on a five foot lathe. The steady was clear at the end of
the lathe. I built a special tool holder bracket so the cutting was actually
beyond the end of the lathe. Wild, but got the job done.

Karl


Karl,
It's true that the way you did it will work. And the longer the part
the smaller the off center error. However, When turning shorter parts
the error may be enough to work the part out of the chuck. In my
experience it's common for the steady to not repeat when clamped to
the ways. Things like the vee in the steady being a larger angle than
the one on the ways can prevent good repeatability.. So I will locate
a steady roughly next to the chuck but will always get it closer when
it's clamped in position.
ERS
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Old December 6th 04, 12:47 AM
Richard W.
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Clark Magnuson" wrote in message
...
I slide the steady rest up next to the headstock and locate the three
roller bearing of my steady rest on the round part of the barrel.
I open the top of the steady rest, move it to the right end of the ways,
loosen the 4 jaw, slide the barrel out of the chuck partially to reach
the steady rest, dial in the chuck on the round part of the left end of
the barrel, and then clamp the steady rest on the round part of the
left end of the barrel.


If the steady rest can change height with how much it is tightened, that
is no good.


If your ways are worn from the tail stock sliding bank and forth, then you
will be below center. Usually there is no wear under the chuck because the
tail stock can't be moved under the chuck. because the cross slide/carriage
is in the way. I have seen the tail stock as much as .090 low due to wear on
the bed and underside of the tail stock. If you have a lathe that's in good
shape you can do it as described above. If it's not, then you have to dial
it in the way I described in my earlier post.

Richard W.




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