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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 3:29 pm 
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Hey Folks,

Pop once told me that the surest way to make an a$$ of yourself was to use “seat of the pants” engineering. All puns aside he was usually right, and as a mechanical engineer he generally considered all the angles (sorry) before proceeding. Unfortunately, I decided to wing it when building a steady rest for my lathe.

Image

When turning the walking stick, I had some problems with whip stocking. Whip stocking is when the work piece starts translating (orbiting) instead of simply rotating. It usually causes tool chattering and can easily ruin the work. Using a steady rest keeps the piece in line and cutting smoothly.

So I decided to build a steady rest. I grabbed up some leftovers I had laying around the shop and went to work. Well, I had it more than half built before the wheels showed up in the post. When assembled, the wheels are so large that the size range of adjustment is only about 2″. Duh

Image

For walking sticks, that’s fine, but I was hoping to build a more useful tool. For now, I’ll leave it be, but I think that I might also build a larger ring to accommodate the other parts. I probably won’t make a drawing first though, … sorry Pop.

Cheers,
Tom

*Apologies to Sir Elton (Goodbye Yellow Brick Road).

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 5:38 pm 
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Tom,
I have considered one of these for some time.
I would, however, need much larger diameter than 2".

I have a woodworking friend that just purchased a nice CNC woodworking machine.
He also is a wood turner.
We have discussed making one of these on his machine.

I will see if that ever materializes.
Zulu

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 6:02 pm 
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Hey Zulu,

What you see in the photos was about a day's work including all the futzing around with design. I think there's less than a day's effort left to finish it, including paint. I don't think that a CNC would make it any easier. I'll post a photo when I've finished it.

Cheers,
Tom

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Last edited by tms on Sat May 19, 2018 6:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 6:38 pm 
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at the risk of stating the obvious, why can't you put the wheels on the other side of the supports so they don't hit the large ring? That would considerably extend your range.


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 6:42 pm 
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Check out the Oneway steady rest, Tom:

https://www.woodcraft.com/products/spin ... t4EALw_wcB

Contrary to intuitive thinking, I don't believe the wheels have to be spaced equally around the work piece.

I built one similar/same as yours only I had free access to a water jet CNC and designed mine in a CAD file that could drive the water jet. However I found that making it large enough to accommodate larger diameter work, the fixture ended up restricting tool access when working close in to it. Thus the Oneway device avoids this problem. The one I made was not vertically adjustable and was made to fit my previous Delta lathe but not my present Powermatic so ... now you've caused another project to float to the top of my bucket list.

So many projects, so little time!

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Cheers - Dennis


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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 6:43 pm 
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Hey drstrip,

Oh yeah, that will happen when necessary. To reduce the bending forces on the ring, I'll run the wheels on the center of the ring when possible. When it's necessary to turn a very small diameter, I'll reverse one wheel so that it overlaps the other two.

Cheers,
Tom

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2018 7:18 pm 
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Hey Dennis,

I agree, the wheels only have to close to an acute angle, they don't have to be equidistant. For the ring design, it does make things simpler though. I haven't used a steady rest yet, so I don't know how it will effect tool access. There's a lot to learn yet.

Cheers,
Tom

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PostPosted: Sat May 26, 2018 12:02 pm 
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The wheels just need to steady the work, and don't have a lot of force on them. This means you can attach the ends of the wheel supports to the ring, and have them pivot to vary the size. Tightening a bolt or knob is enough to hold them, particularly if one surface has sandpaper glued on. Assuming the wheels face away from the ring, this lets you go as small as the wheels let you, and as large as the ring. If you need to get smaller, you can have each wheel in a different plane.

I made a similar one, but just held the wheel supports to the ring with C-clamps to try it out. One thing I noticed is that two wheels is enough with a small diameter, and that allows the tool to be very close. The C-clamps work fine.


Last edited by AlanWS on Sun May 27, 2018 7:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2018 6:47 pm 
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Should have posted this earlier.
Here's a steady rest I made a while back. The spokes are t-slotted into the ring. The knobs are in threaded inserts and just provide a friction stop on the spokes

Image

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