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  • MT2 Alignment tool question

    IN setting up my Grizzly 16inch long bed lathe (G0462) The tail stock and head stock did not align perfectly at first and I had to make some adjustments and watch how I tightened the head stock and tail stock. Once learned, it aligned up quickly every time. But my eyes are not as good as they used to be. While they looked perfect, I couldn't tell if they were something like .005 or .007 out of alignment. This causes problems on pens.

    I have an MT2 Alignment tool and used it before on my Rikon pen lathe when I was in Japan. Today, I tried it out on my Grizzly. So this is my question: How do I know or how can I tell if it is out of alignment? I pull the tail stock up to the head stock with the alignment tool and it fits.

    Now the question is: Did it align perfectly because it was perfectly aligned? OR Did it align because the MT Alignment tool forced it into alignment?

    It is hard to tell when the alignment is .005 or so out of alignment. If it is out of alignment without the alignment tool, I will eventually notice this on pens.

    What do I look for in aligning?

    Alignment tool:​​​​​​​ https://www.amazon.com/NOVA-2MTNA-Ac...alignment+tool
    Hank Lee

    Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

  • #2
    Originally posted by leehljp View Post
    IN setting up my Grizzly 16inch long bed lathe (G0462) The tail stock and head stock did not align perfectly at first and I had to make some adjustments and watch how I tightened the head stock and tail stock. Once learned, it aligned up quickly every time. But my eyes are not as good as they used to be. While they looked perfect, I couldn't tell if they were something like .005 or .007 out of alignment. This causes problems on pens.

    I have an MT2 Alignment tool and used it before on my Rikon pen lathe when I was in Japan. Today, I tried it out on my Grizzly. So this is my question: How do I know or how can I tell if it is out of alignment? I pull the tail stock up to the head stock with the alignment tool and it fits.

    Now the question is: Did it align perfectly because it was perfectly aligned? OR Did it align because the MT Alignment tool forced it into alignment?

    It is hard to tell when the alignment is .005 or so out of alignment. If it is out of alignment without the alignment tool, I will eventually notice this on pens.

    What do I look for in aligning?

    Alignment tool:​​​​​​​ https://www.amazon.com/NOVA-2MTNA-Ac...alignment+tool
    Can you loosen the adjustments, put the alignment tool between the headstock and tailstock, then tighten the adjustments? That should insure that it is aligned to the accuracy of the alignment tool.

    0.005" may be difficult to achieve - and more accuracy than needed, even on pens. As a practical matter, that is greater accuracy than many live centers can achieve, you will get more runout than that in a live center. The only way I have found to achieve that level of accuracy is with a dead center, as the dead center can be adjusted to have a couple thousandths of play.

    As a practical matter, having the headstock and tailstock aligned doesn't really matter, unless you are using a slide rest. When you hand turn, you can easily adjust for it being a little off, and even if it is off by a lot, you can just slant the tool rest.

    What is the real concern and issue here? What problem are you trying to avoid? I'm wondering if the root cause of the concern is really a different issue.
    --------------------------------------------------
    Electrical Engineer by day, Woodworker by night

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    • #3
      Hank, it sounds like you've used the mt2 alignment tool correctly as you described and woodturner. I used the same thing to set up my Harbor Freight 34706 lathe after I rotate the headstock for larger Bowl turning, and it seems to get me pretty close - however there always seem to be a little bit of tension with the tailstock that once I remove the Morse taper alignment tool, I might have to do micro adjustment to get point to point on the centers. Another test I do is to take a known good mandrel and put it in the headstock taper and see how the end of that aligns to the tailstock live Center. Once you get this set, given the capacity of that lathe, I believe you shouldn't have to move it too much and you should stay within tolerance quite well.
      Bill in Buena Park

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      • #4
        WT, I know that .005 in general is negligible. But the hand can feel something like 1/2000th differences. Not sure the exact amount. However, .005 is 1/200 of in inch. If the alignment is off by .005 that much that means one side of a pen blank will be over sized at the nib and the other side will be under by that amount. It is enough to feel with the hand/fingers and even see. That is not acceptable when making $200 - $500 pens. Not really acceptable on a $100.00 pen.

        AS to the alignment, I couldn't tell if it was bringing things into alignment or if it was aligned.

        Bill, One things I don't like about the Grizzly is that the tail stock has a lot of mass back by the wheel but the foot section of the tail stock is way forward. When releasing the tail stock or locking the tail stock, it rocks forward as it locks. It rocks into alignment OK, but I just don't like the fact that the Tail Stock foot print is much forward of the most mass. I need to just the nut under it, but still when the clamp releases it enough to move the TS, it rocks back. It does not align unless fully clamped; it is not aligned when moving the TS back and forward. Weird.

        Look at it: http://www.grizzly.com/products/Wood...ce=grizzly.com

        Hank Lee

        Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

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