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Old 07-16-2009, 07:48 AM   #1 (permalink)
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QC tool post for an Atlas 10"

I'm considering upgrading to a quick change tool post for my old Atlas 10" lathe. Here's what I'm trying to figure out:
Aloris ($$$!) vs. generic knockoff (are Phase II's any good?)
Wedge vs. Piston style
AXA size vs BXA size.
Any advice or comments from experience w/above is greatly appreciated.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I bought my QCTP from tools4cheap.net - it's a great way to run a lathe. I like mine, would do it again. It's an import set.

I'm about 98% happy with it. I got the wedge style - supposedly they offer more accurate repeatability than the piston style. Seems like everyone over at PracticalMachinist shuns the piston style.

The only part I'm not happy with are the screws that hold down the cutting tools. The screws are soft metal, and when you hunker down on them to get things really tight, the allen heads can waller out. A couple of the included allen head screws are now worthless, but there are enough of them included with the kit so that I can just replace them with the 'extras'. But in the long run, I'll need to replace the allen head screws.

You'll need to cut/notch the baseplate to fit your lathe, it's not a big deal if you have a mill, but it can be done with a saw, grinder, etc given enough patience and ingenuity.

Mine's a BXA on a 13" South Bend.

Last edited by cabletech; 07-16-2009 at 08:20 AM.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:23 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I would keep an eye out for a good used setup. Check craiglist often for machinist tools listings. In my experience the CL ads with the least info, that are the most vauge, have the best stuff

I recently picked up my first QC tool post setup from an ad just like that. "Macheenist tools fer sale" no other info.. I called and he said he had a bunch of old machinst stuff, "drill bits... and other stuff".

I walked out of there with an Aloris wedge CA (14-20") QC setup and 8 tool holders for $150. These normally sell for over $800 from what I've seen. I also walked out with 2 large buckets full of hundreds of tool bits and carbide inserts, a small milling vise, 2 huge cast iron squares and a bunch of 50 taper tooling.

If I was buying new, I dont think I could pony up the cash for Aloris. Phase II seems to be good stuff from what I've read. Another thing to remember is that the tool holders come up for sale fairly often.. so you dont have to buy a complete set all at once.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cabletech View Post
You'll need to cut/notch the baseplate to fit your lathe, it's not a big deal if you have a mill, but it can be done with a saw, grinder, etc given enough patience and ingenuity.
Good point. I forgot to mention that I had to mill the Aloris base quite a bit to fit the compound on my old Reed Prentice 16" lathe.
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Old 07-16-2009, 09:14 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Azzy2000 View Post
I recently picked up my first QC tool post setup from an ad just like that. "Macheenist tools fer sale" no other info.. I called and he said he had a bunch of old machinst stuff, "drill bits... and other stuff".
Good advice. I bought an Induma mill with Mitu DRO this way. The ad said "milling drill press".
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Old 07-16-2009, 12:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Phase II seems to be good stuff.

AXA would be the size suitable for that lathe. I've got a Phase II AXA on my 9x20 Jet lathe, and I have another one bought for my Atlas 10" as well... Haven't put it on yet though. Put a CXA on our 16" South Bend Lathe.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:19 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I've got a Phase II QCTP on my 13" South Bend, a wedge style, and it's really nice. As far as chicom tools go Phase II are actuallly pretty good. If you have a mill it's also pretty easy to make your own toolholders. For what it is and what it's going to be used on the Aloris is way overpriced.

Andy
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Old 07-16-2009, 09:49 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the help. Phase II wedge "AXA" size it is. Now to find a good deal on one!
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:43 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hell I went with the piston style myself... don't see any reason to pay more for a wedge style. I can tell you that when you tighten down that piston style that toolpost isn't going to budge a damn bit. And as for perfect repeatablility... hell I'm not running a production shop... I'm just happy that I don't have to set my bit on center every time anymore!
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Old 07-17-2009, 03:58 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by billybob_81067 View Post
Hell I went with the piston style myself... don't see any reason to pay more for a wedge style. I can tell you that when you tighten down that piston style that toolpost isn't going to budge a damn bit. And as for perfect repeatablility... hell I'm not running a production shop... I'm just happy that I don't have to set my bit on center every time anymore!

+1

I have the Phase II AXA size piston type on my Logan 10"

I will add that even perfect repeatability of the toolpost wouldn't matter on a 50 year old lathe....

i.e. your going to have to fiddle with everything anyway as your need for accuracy increases on certain jobs.
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