Boring Lamp Stems

Discussion in 'Tutorials and Tips' started by Syd Sellers, Feb 24, 2013.

  1. Syd Sellers

    Syd Sellers

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    Am I the only one with a lathe that has a solid tail stock? This makes boring lamp stems a real problem. I have made my own home made thing but I would like to see what others do...

    Fill me in.
     
  2. I have nice tools for long hole boring through the tailstock, and I used to be able to easily do that with my Grizzly lathe. Now that I upgraded to a Robust AB, I cannot do that anymore due to the tailstock hole only being about 1/4". Robust suggested drilling through the headstock (so did Oneway when I was shopping around for the upgrade), however that does not work well for me because of the nature of my tools and my methods, but also because it is difficult to get the auger to get a good start in the center due to the headestock bore being so much larger in diameter.

    The other suggestion was to drill it off the lathe. Not a great idea for me either.

    I will attempt to modify my tailstock for a 3/8" bore, but it requires a larger diameter screw. It has been a minor frustration/disappointment, but the lathe otherwise is so nice. I went from the hut to the mansion.

    Maybe you can find another tailstock that has what you want? Will mine from my old Grizzly fit? I am keeping the headstock for a buffing station, the legs/bed are already gone, but the tailstock is still here.

    Mark
     
  3. Syd Sellers

    Syd Sellers

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    Mark, now that is a great idea.... My old Rockwell/Deltas both have a flat twin bed with a 1.5" gap between....

    I don't know what the old Griz has...Can you check it for me.

    Thanks for a possible solution.

    I will put a pic up of the accessory I made that does a pretty good job of taking place of the hollow tail stock. This add on sits in the Banjo and takes the place of the tail stock. I can drill 15" and be out by only 1/16 at the head stock end. Not bad for a home made rig and a home made drill.

    The drill I purchased was an off shore thing that broke on my first attempt to use it so I had to make my own... It drills fast and not to bad for straight...

    Later.
     
  4. john lucas

    john lucas

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    You can hollow through the headstock if you can turn your lathe in reverse.
    The method I teach for those having solid tailstocks is to drill from both sides with a short drill as deep as you can. This is usually about 4" or so with a standard drill. I do this on the drill press. Then I follow this with longer drill bits in a hand held drill going in from both ends. It usually meets in the middle or close enough that the drill joins both holes.
     

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  5. Syd Sellers

    Syd Sellers

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    Making a Hollow tool Post

    John, I hope I can show what I made to make the job of boring a lamp blank easy... I made a post for the Banjo that has a hollow shaft with a centre in it that is removable. You set up your lamp stem in a chuck and a steady so the stem is supported, set the centre of the accessory in the centre of the stem. Then push the centre in keeping it straight with the lathe bed, loosen the set screw so the centre will move back as you push the cup centre in, clamp the banjo down. Now you are ready to set up the drill. Remove you tail stock from the lathe, insert the drill and away you go. I have a 24" drill so I can go in a pretty good distance. If you drill maybe 2" pull the drill back and clean it out, rotate the drill 90° and drill again and keep rotating 90° every time you clean, it runs in very straight. At the end of 16" of drilling, I am off centre maybe 1/16 of an inch. This is good enough for the lamps I make. The last Pic shows the drill going into the hollow centre.

    Hope you can get the idea.
    Syd
     

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  6. john lucas

    john lucas

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    that will work. Good job. I have done it with the steady rest and the lamp auger just resting on the tool rest. It sort of self centers if you start it slow.
     
  7. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Same thing here. I have a nice Crown lamp auger that fits 10 mm (⅜") tailstock holes, but now that I have a Robust AB, I am out of the lamp business without doing something else. I thought about calling up Brent and chewing on his ear, but it sounds like it has already been chewed on before and he is probably accustomed to that by now.

    There is also a bit in your Word document about hollowing from the headstock and you mentioned that there are no hollow drive centers. However, you can use a hollow dead center -- the stubby type made for using a lamp auger and then use a scroll chuck to hold the wood. There is enough clearance that the dead center will not interfere with the chuck. Don't forget to use setscrews on the chuck to lock it to the spindle.

    One question: What is the "right" way to sharpen a single flute lamp auger? Crown offers no suggestions and I haven't found anything else. I have fiddled around with different ideas and have something that works slightly better that when I got it, but still far from great. How about using a ship's auger and going slow?

    That is an elegant solution and I might try something like that.
     
  8. Bill, yes I tried very diplomaticaly to get Brent to think about changing the tailstock bore for all the lamp boring people. He was willing to help me with changing back to a #2 MT. All my good lamp boring accessories as well as other centers are #2 and my new used AB had a #3 MT. However, he did not offer to do anything about the ts bore, instead suggesting alternative methods.

    AHA! Revelation! I tried drilling thru the hs with a chuck holding and could not get the bit to center very well within the larger hs bore. This solves that at least.

    I think I have the same auger, Bill, and I harpen it w/ a small diamond hone only on the flat surfaces. So far so good. Mine cuts very well and expels shavings easily.

    My plan is to replace my tailstock quill and screw, and if necessary, the whole ts. I have an inquiry into Powermatic to get the dimensions of their 4224 screw/quill. This would also solve my MT issue. I'm hoping that at least the screw is long enough and that I can then get another #2 MT quill that has not yet been drilled out for the screw from Brent. One way or another I WILL get the tailstock that I want!

    Syd, sorry to get back to you about the Grizz ts. The bed gap is 2" and the swing is 16" (8" center to bed). You can have it for the postage which will be quite a bit I would guess.

    Mark
     
  9. Syd Sellers

    Syd Sellers

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    Hi Mark, your tail stock is a bit to big for my poor old Delta 12" lathes. Thanks so much for the offer. Maybe there is someone else out there that can use it.
    Syd.
     
  10. john lucas

    john lucas

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    I found that my Auger didn't follow the center very well when I first got it. I found there were two problems. One was forcing the cut and the second was it wasn't sharp enough which of course made you force the cut. I use a diamond hone and sharpen the outside of the cutter. Not the flute, just the cutting tip. I stepped through the grits up to ultra fine (1200 grit) and it cuts a whole lot better.
    I have faceplates that I've drilled 3/8" holes in. This was done for making a center mark for remounting work but it works great for hollowing from the headstock. I'm in Atlanta right now and away from my lathe but I think you have to run the lathe in reverse for this using a lamp auger.
    Another way I've done it is to mount the lamp blank between a chuck and the tailcenter. then put your steady rest on and lock it down. Now you can remove the tailstock and use the tool rest to start the cutter and keep it supported.
     
  11. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    I found this article about boring long holes on the Woodturning magazine website. It reminded me about a class that I took with Trent Bosch last year when we had him here for a week of classes. Trent likes to use gun drills and said that used ones can be found on eBay for a good price. He also makes nice holes very quickly by using a spindle gouge and plunging straight in.
     
  12. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    And, here is the second installment.
     
  13. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    And, finally here is part three.
     
  14. john lucas

    john lucas

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    I bought a small gun drill. I broke it the first time I used it. It was about 1/4" and 6" long. When I looked which was many years ago I didn't find any at affordable to me prices. That may have changed and the search engines are far better today than they were 5 to 7 years ago when I looked for them.
     
  15. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    There are several eBay stores that sell used surplus gun drills. Here is a link to one of them. I have never bought anything from this dealer so I don't know how good they are.

    BTW, Trent hooks an air hose up to the gun drill to blow chips out. It worked great when I tried it on a hollow form that I made during the class.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2013

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