Saturday, February 11, 2012

Installing a Tailstock Cam Lock on a 7x Mini Lathe

I purchased a Mini Lathe Tailstock Cam Lock from Little Machine Shop.  It is a well made kit.  Actually, I think it is superior to the factory installed locks I've seen on some Mini Lathes.

This is normally an easy to install kit.  However, my tailstock casting was quite uneven where the kit would be resting.  I decided to machine the bottom of the kit to match the angle of my casting.

I had to cut a compound angle and file a radius on the bottom of my kit to get it aligned correctly. Once I had a good fit, I drilled the hole for the shaft.

Even though cutting the angle made my kit shorter, I nearly came out of the top of the flat area on the rear of the tailstock.
 Like everything else on this casting, this flat area was not flat, so I milled it flat.   Then I added a flat washer and a wave spring washer to eliminate the sloppy feel of the handle when in the unlocked position.  It works fine without it, especially of you install a spring like the one included in LMS's Tweaks.&.Enhancements kit.  But I like to make everything feel as precise as possible.
A front view.  I am very pleased with this kit.  It operates smoothly and locks solidly. A vast improvement over the original lock nut.