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  1. #16
    Registered user. MartinM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool (By: Raynerd)

    Quote Originally Posted by Raynerd View Post
    Martin, that is exactly the point! I looked for months about machining a depthing tool. I even have some lovely brass castings I purchased but don't dare to put tool to metal for fear of losing parallelism. With this design, each row of holes is drilled at a time on the mill, moving onto the next line. This means all holes are parallel drilled on the mill.
    Cool.
    When people were first discussing the bearings, I thought they were referencing the hinge balls.
    In both instances, you've shown a great mind for creative engineering solutions.
    Living life at eight beats per minute.

  2. #17
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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool (By: MartinM)

    Let's hope Raynerd comes back with more details.

    As I understand it, if you pin both plates together, reference off one side in the mill and do all of the machining of the bearing holes, when you open the plates like a book, the holes have to be exactly in the same location on both plates. Where as trying to machine V grooves in each plate would require separate set ups for each plate, and for a home hobbyist I think that would be an accuracy challenge as well.

    It will be interesting to hear if Raynerd has managed to perform some sort of alignment test.

    David
    David S

  3. #18
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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool (By: David S)

    Quote Originally Posted by David S View Post
    Let's hope Raynerd comes back with more details.

    As I understand it, if you pin both plates together, reference off one side in the mill and do all of the machining of the bearing holes, when you open the plates like a book, the holes have to be exactly in the same location on both plates. Where as trying to machine V grooves in each plate would require separate set ups for each plate, and for a home hobbyist I think that would be an accuracy challenge as well.

    It will be interesting to hear if Raynerd has managed to perform some sort of alignment test.

    David
    That's true. If your mill has a large enough envelope you could machine them in one run though. Align them axially on the table and go to town.

  4. #19
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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool

    Good morning,

    I am interested in all your feedback and constructive criticism. I considered a number of ways of machining a depthing tool, as I said, including purchasing large brass castings which cost me a fortune. However, the issue with the runners being parallel always caused the concern. Of all the methods I considered in machining, this seemed to give the least number of variables to go wrong!

    I think this has been clarified but for those asking, yes the bearings are close enough together to form a groove that the runner sits in.

    Most of this has been discussed but to confirm, this was drilled in the mill. The two plates were clamped together, taper pinned together and drilled together (something that could not have be done with a conventional tool). All holes are therefore aligned. The plates were clamped in the machine vice on the mill. The holes were then drilled and reamed, a row at a time. By row, I am referring to the adjacent holes in which the runners sit as this is crucial for the runners to sit parallel. So the top 4 holes were done, then the bottom 4 and then finally the bottom two. It was my understanding that it was also critical that the bottom two holes for the hinge bearings were parallel with the bar runner bearings.

    It it was also mentioned above by David that the holes were drilled referenced off one side. Using this method, providing all three rows of holes were drilled one after the other without removing the plates, it does not matter if the plates are not square or if the vice is out of alignment as surely the hinged bearing holes are still parallel to the runner holes - the critical part. I see this as another advantage of this design.

    I do fully agree that a disadvantage is how the ball sits in the groove - debur, not to debur etc. I do also wonder weather steel would be a better material for this being more hardwearing although for such infrequent and gentle use of such a tool, I doubt brass holes would wear. The holes were reamed and I then gently rubbed the plate on a surface plate with 1800 grit to clean the hole. There is a sharp edge on the hole and I can feel the nylon bearings digging in which isn't good and why they are now all steel.

    I guess this this could be done with v groves. However for 200mm depthing tool you'd be looking at 400mm x travel on the milling machine, past the limits of mine.

    I have really enjoyed reading the comments and it's got me thinking a lot! Thank you.
    www.raynerd.co.uk - So long and thanks for all the fish.

  5. #20
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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool (By: Raynerd)

    Sounds like you really thought this through! Nice work.

  6. #21
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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool (By: Raynerd)

    Thanks for the update Raynerd. I have thought about your approach considerably and with the limited work envelop that I have this is the only way it would make sense for me. With one set up I am not sure how you could be more accurate. I do understand the concerns around the steel to brass hole interface. I guess if one was really ####, they could install oversize steel plugs in all of the hole locations and then proceed to drill and ream all the bearing holes.

    Thanks again.

    David
    David S

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    Default Re: Building a Depthing Tool (By: David S)

    Or you could make tapered buttons made out of steel to fit the holes. That way you could turn them as you detect any wear in their surface.

    But I do like the simplicity of the ball bearings, so long as you can make it work.

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