jhearl Posted September 5, 2015 Share #1 Posted September 5, 2015 I recently purchased an A2Z quick change tool post (QCTP) set from Little Machine Shop for my Sherline lathe. The package arrived this week and I got around to installing it last nite. Installing it is straight forward - simply remove the extra-long T-nut from the Sherline tool post and use it with the new QCTP. I ran into a problem right away, however. The tool post (held in place with a long cap screw through the center of the post) would not tighten down on the cross slide table. I wound up having to put two fat washers under the head of the cap screw to make it tight. Next, I mounted a 1/4" square cutting tool in one of the holders provided. The holder is designed to hold tools from 1/4" to 1/2". (Note, the website says that although you can get a 1/2" tool in the holder, it may not go low enough to allow it to be centered on the work. I don't have a half-inch cutting tool, but it appears that it would work just fine.) I put the tool holder on the tool post and, using Sherline's height gauge, attempted to adjust the height of the tool. Unfortunately, it would not come up high enough. It was about 1mm shy. At that point, I began suspecting that the tool post was simply too short so I initiated a series of emails with Little Machine Shop. I got a prompt reply from Roger Proffitt who said he hadn't heard of this happening before. I asked him for the dimensions of the tool post so I could check to see if my had been milled too short. He measured another tool post he had in stock and mine was the same size. In the end, the best he could offer was for me to shim the tool post or the cutting tool or return it for a refund. I like the tool post and wanted to keep it, so I decided to make a shim to go under the tool post itself. I had a piece of 5/32" brass plate I was able to cut down to size and drill a hole through it. I glued it to the bottom of the tool post with super glue and now the tool post sits tight on the table and I can adjust all the tools as needed. It's a bit disappointing to have to modify something that is supposed to be made specifically for your lathe, but it is what it is and it will work just fine now. In this picture, you can see the brass shim under the tool post: And here is a view from a different angle: As for the tool post itself, I like it a lot. It is designed so that the tool holders have a dovetail slot that fits over a dovetail on the tool post. Rotating the arm on top of the post pushes a pin outward that then pushes the tool holder against the dovetail. For a small lathe like the Sherline, it seems solid enough to me. Changing tool holders is, indeed, quick and easy. There is a dovetail on the left side of the tool post and one on the "back" (that is the side away from the operator). To angle the tool post on the table, you loosen the cap screw and turn the whole tool post. Each tool holder has an adjustment knob that raises and lowers the tool holder on the dovetail. Once you set the height for a tool, you can lock the adjustment knob so you don't have to re-set it unless you were to grind the tool or replace the cutter. The set comes with 4 tool holders - two for standard, square cutting tools, one for a 1/2" parting tool, and one for a 3/8" shank boring tool. Additional tool holders are available. I also bought a blank tool holder ($13.95) that can be milled in any way you like. My idea is to make a holder for the tool rest used with wood turning tools. Although I looked at it a while this morning, I have yet to figure out how to make it work. Clearly it's going to take a bit more thought. The QCTP with a set of four tool holders sells for around $100 and it was worth the price to me. There are sets available for other mini-lathes as well. It took about a week to arrive and shipping was $12.76. Making the shim was no big deal and the tool post works great. Standard disclaimer - I have no connection to Little Machine Shop other than being a satisfied customer. Here's a link to the page for the Sherline version - http://littlemachineshop.com/products/product_view.php?ProductID=2477&category=-419988835 Cheers - John mtaylor and tarbrush 2 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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