Angle plate alternative
Before setting the lathe up for milling, you will need to make two posts as per
Sk. 1. This is used to support the angle plate in some of the machining operations.
It will also find uses for other projects. Cut two pieces of 1 1/4" square steel,
1 1/2" long, the dimensions are not crucial but do not use anything smaller than
1" square. Fit in the four jaw checking two adjacent faces with a small square off
the chuck face to see that they are true. Face the end and drill through to suit
the size of tee nuts you use. Remove, turn over, again checking with a square, and
face this end also. These will be used as an alternative to an angle plate as they
can be from time to time for other tasks.
Generally, clean up the casting, in particular remove any high spots, check one face
against a flat surface to see that it does not rock excessively, perfection will
not of course be likely at this stage. Mount the two posts on the vertical slide
and the face just checked against these and machine the other face as in Photograph
1. Placing a piece of soft copper between the posts and the angle plate will help
compensate for any irregularities in the casting's surface. Also for added support,
ensure that the top edge of the casting is against the vertical slide face. However,
having made that recommendation, do check that you will not be machining more off
the face at one end than the other as you will end up with the thickness of the angle
plate being tapered.
I should add that you must set the slide parallel to the cross slide traverse using
a dial test indicator and, if you have a swivelling vertical slide, upright using
an engineers square off the lathe's bed. This though should always be the normal
procedure when adding the vertical slide to the lathe no matter what degree of accuracy
is required. Alternatively, fit the faceplate and use the face of this to position
the vertical slide parallel to the cross slides axis.
This project is aimed predominantly at the workshop owner who uses the lathe for
milling. However, the project should be of interest to the viewer who's workshop
contains a milling machine.
The casting used for this project was obtained from Woking Precision, a firm that
was taken over by Hemingway Kits. Hemingway do not list it in their catalogue at
this time, 2011, but may still have some stock obtained from Woking Precision. However,
there are a number of suppliers of such castings for which the method proposed would
be equally appropriate.
All pictures can be clicked on to provide a larger view
These pictures have been taken using an already machined casting