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Cowell sensitive tailstock attachment

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Martin Cleeve's Rack Tailstock Designs

Martin Cleeve's Rack Tailstock Designs

In 1956 The Model Engineer published a design for a Myford rack tailstock modification, 'the Rack Tailstock' by Martin Cleeve. In 1960 it published a revised version for the EW lathe.

CotswoldsPhil17/08/2014 08:40:07
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196 forum posts
112 photos

I have just aquired a Myford Super 7 which will replace my well-cared-for and little used, ML7, owned since 1969. My dilemma is what do I do with the Cowell sensitive tailstock attachment fitted to the ML7? it is brilliant for all aspects of tailstock work, including large and small drills, tapping and reaming, allowing the tool to be extracted quickly to clear swarf, or just following the work. Do I swap the tailstocks? effectively upgrading the ML7 and potentially devaluing the Super 7? The Super 7 will see me out! (I've had the ML7 for 45 years) so I'm not too worried about it's long term value.

The Super 7 is in excellent original condition with very little measurable and visible wear (The serial number and date cast into the bed indicates it was manufactured in 1972).

The Super 7 has now been cleaned (it came up like new) and the angular contact bearings have been replaced as they had been greased with a molyslip type grease and were noisy when cleaned and correctly oiled. The front cone-bearing is in excellent condition. (see my Album for the full story)

Phil H

Phil P17/08/2014 09:35:29
446 forum posts
116 photos

I would look out for a second hand ML7 tailstock to use your Cowells attachment on.

I have an S7, and just like you wanted to keep the rack and pinion tailstock, I just swap the complete unit as when needed, you should be able to get hold of a second hand ML7 tailstock for reasonable money.

Whatever you do, don't sell the Cowells unit, you will be extremely lucky to ever find another if you do !!

Phil

Edited By Phil P on 17/08/2014 09:37:24

CotswoldsPhil17/08/2014 09:49:15
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196 forum posts
112 photos

Hi Phil P

Thanks for that, the Cowell is a nice piece of kit and the Myford S7 equivalent very expensive.

I will keep the Cowell unit and hope to find an ML7 tailstock in good condition.

Regards

Phil H

Phil P17/08/2014 16:42:51
446 forum posts
116 photos

workshop 018 24 dec.jpgJust in case anyone is wondering what we are talking about, here is mine in action with a Coventry die head.

Phil

workshop 017 24 dec.jpg

CotswoldsPhil17/08/2014 17:00:15
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196 forum posts
112 photos

Hi Phil P

Thanks for your photo and explanation I should have included a photo with my first post - I'm new to posting on forums so am learning all the time.

I see you have a stop collar on the end - excellent idea to stop running out of rack.

Regards

Phil H

Michael Gilligan17/08/2014 17:13:22
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12752 forum posts
552 photos

Many years ago, I managed to buy one of those [excluding the Myford-specific attachment collar] from N. Mole & Co. in Watford; then adapted the tailstock of a very old lathe to take it ... yes, it was well worth the effort !

By the way: I remember that Mr. Mole had a brand new, still greased-up in its shipping crate, Round-Bed Drummond stored on a shelf awaiting his retirement ... I do hope he got to use it.

MichaelG.

Phil P17/08/2014 17:23:53
446 forum posts
116 photos
Posted by CotswoldsPhil on 17/08/2014 17:00:15:

Hi Phil P

Thanks for your photo and explanation I should have included a photo with my first post - I'm new to posting on forums so am learning all the time.

I see you have a stop collar on the end - excellent idea to stop running out of rack.

Regards

Phil H

The stop collar is there so I can set the length of thread for the die head to trip open at, without moving the tailstock on the bed.

Phil

CotswoldsPhil17/08/2014 19:22:33
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196 forum posts
112 photos

I sure I bought mine from Mole's in Watford also, probably in the 80's, can't be sure, but it is a very useful attachment.

Regards

Phil H

CotswoldsPhil18/08/2014 17:37:16
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196 forum posts
112 photos

Hi again,

I had to make a collar to facilitate reassembling what had been a jammed Jacobs 1/2" Drill chuck.

Here is a 1" drill bit being used in the Cowell sensitive drilling attachment showing it capability.

p1020580.jpg

Robbo18/08/2014 22:24:07
1504 forum posts
142 photos

Phil H,

Do as suggested and look out for another ML7 tailstock to use with the Cowell's.

The Myford attachment for the Super 7 tailstock is so unwieldy and awkward, and involves the complete dismantling of the tailstock to fit, that many do as I do and have a separate ML7 tailstock with sensitive drilling attachment and simply swap tailstocks as the need arises.

Phil (R)

Edited By Robbo on 18/08/2014 22:25:43

Bandersnatch19/08/2014 17:17:53
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1135 forum posts
39 photos

Looking at the pictures of this device, it looks like it should be eminently feasible to come up with a home-made version. Does anyone know (or could someone check) the rack and pinion ratio ..... say the distance travelled for one complete turn of the capstan?

Simon036219/08/2014 18:54:09
146 forum posts
40 photos

Many (many) years ago there was a couple of articles in ME - when it was roughly A5 size, presumably in the early 60s - on exactly this device. I found it in one of the second hand MEs that I was prone to buying and copied it and scaled it down for my Cowells 90 that I had at the time. It was never finished (although I suspect I still have the block of steel with and angled face cut into it) and the magazine is in one of the dozen or so boxes of MEs awaiting our next move so that I can have them accessible again.

Maybe the thought will trigger some memories - or access to a comprehensive index?

Simon

HasBean19/08/2014 19:11:30
131 forum posts
30 photos

I've got the attachment for the Super 7 and don't have any issues with it, actually I find it invaluable. Size of the tailstock aside by the photos it doesn't appear any larger.

Paul

Bandersnatch19/08/2014 22:01:42
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1135 forum posts
39 photos
Posted by Simon0362 on 19/08/2014 18:54:09:

Many (many) years ago there was a couple of articles in ME - when it was roughly A5 size, presumably in the early 60s - on exactly this device.

Thanks for the pointer. According to Dias Costa's database search program, this sounds like ME Vol-107 Issue 2672 (7-Aug 1952).

Robbo19/08/2014 22:24:14
1504 forum posts
142 photos

Bandersnatch,

ME No 2672 contains an article about (reviewing/describing) the Cowells attachment, so there are no measurements.

There is a pic of it dismantled. If you want to see it PM me your email address. I don't know of another article.

Phil

Bandersnatch19/08/2014 22:32:40
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1135 forum posts
39 photos

Phil,

see pm

Simon036219/08/2014 23:15:15
146 forum posts
40 photos
Posted by Robbo on 19/08/2014 22:24:14:

Bandersnatch,

ME No 2672 contains an article about (reviewing/describing) the Cowells attachment, so there are no measurements.

There is a pic of it dismantled. If you want to see it PM me your email address. I don't know of another article.

Phil

From memory it was a proper constructional article - I was less confident to go designing my own stuff in those days so I am sure I would have started from a solid basis. Maybe it was called something like 'Capstan' tailstock or rack operated?

Simon

Michael Gilligan19/08/2014 23:39:32
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12752 forum posts
552 photos

A little bit of history, here

MichaelG.

Bandersnatch20/08/2014 01:10:57
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1135 forum posts
39 photos
Posted by Simon0362 on 19/08/2014 23:15:15:

From memory it was a proper constructional article - I was less confident to go designing my own stuff in those days so I am sure I would have started from a solid basis. Maybe it was called something like 'Capstan' tailstock or rack operated?

Searching on "rack tailstock" in Dias's database gives a 2-part Martin Cleeve construction series in 1956 and a 2-part follow-up in 1960 which sounds like it could be what you remember, Simon.

The relevant issues are 2877 & 2879 (Vol-115) and 3091 & 3093 (Vol-123).

Neil Wyatt20/08/2014 13:58:40
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Moderator
15676 forum posts
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73 articles

How do folks feel about seeing an article like this reprinted in the pages of MEW?

Is it too specialist?

Would it have wider interest?

Would you feel cheated or delighted?

Neil

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