First, is to make a center with straight shank - to be used with the ER16 collet. This was also my first time trying my hand at tempering steel.
I cut off a short section of 10mm steel rod and turn it down a little to descale it. The compound slide was set to an angle of 30-degree to allow an included angle of 60-degree.
After cleaning up with sandpaper, I heated the business end of the center with the Proxxon torch. This torch was bought quite a while back from Mike. So far it has only been used to burn some irritating black ants in the kitchen. I didn't manage to get it cherry red as described in some forum postings. Still went ahead to dunk it in a cup of water when I saw the change in colour.
Somehow, I like the darkish colour...
Tested it by using it to align the A2Z adjustable tailstock with a dead center mounted, a painful process but I managed.
The reason for this adjustable one is the drooping of the original tailstock when extended. I'll work on the repair I saw on the web when I have time.
With some time more to burn, I decided to test out the "follower rest"; using the A2Z QCTP and a brass finger mounted. The brass finger was taken from the fixed steady.
It didn't work as i thought it would. I experienced lots of chatter leaving ugly finishes on the stainless steel pin. The diameter was still bigger at the tailstock end though alignment on both end were done.
I'm hoping that this will not be the result I get from using the Sherline's follower rest, which I should be receiving on the 26th this month. The DRO kit and some other items I ordered should be in the same shipment of there is no screw up.
A bigger lathe is still haunting me. It's now seems that the Proxxon PD400 is the right one to go for. The Wabeco D4000E is my dream machine but the price is too daunting; it is quite a few thousands more than the PD400 but with slightly shorter bed 350mm vs 400mm.
With that being decided, The problem left is, how will I be able to smuggle it into my shop without being seen? Not an easy task as the PD400 is quite big to simple hide away from sight. Besides, the bright yellow (splash guard and chips collection tray) and green would stand out from the Sherline lathe and 2 mills, which are black. Sigh...
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