Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

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oldvan
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Location: Western NY USA

Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by oldvan » Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:56 am

Thanks to a trade with a fellow Home Machinist member, I now have a Phase II BXA Tool post
mounted to my 1918 Lodge & Shipley lathe. :D Thanks ED!

Until last night I'd been using an ugly concoction of a piece of square stock plus a crank as a
temporary chuck key for my lathe. It was ugly and marginally functional; "temporary" had
started to look a lot closer to "permanent" and it was time to fix that.

Last night using the lathe, my Hardinge UM milling machine and my little Craftsman drill press
I turned the 1.25" diameter by 6" long shank from a retired reamer into a chuck key for the lathe.
I could have purchased the key from Enco for $25.00 and been done with it, but that doesn't give
the same sense of accomplishment. I'm far from being an expert machinist, and need all the
practice I can get. It makes me smile when I make chips AND something useful.

Image

No fancy features, just functionality. The cross piece is held in place by a 1/4-20 set screw.
Taper was cut by setting the compound to an appropriate looking angle. IT WORKS!! :shock:

JackF
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Location: Caldwell, Idaho

Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by JackF » Tue Oct 05, 2010 9:54 am

Oldvan,

Nice work, I need to make a new one. The square drive on one of mine is bent, got it that way but can't imagine how that could have happened. :shock: :D

Jack.

EdK
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by EdK » Tue Oct 05, 2010 11:42 am

Nice job!

I need to make another one for my 4-jaw chuck so I can use the two-key method of adjusting it.

Ed
Vectrax 14x40 lathe, Enco RF-45 clone mill, MillerMatic 180 MIG.

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fourjc
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by fourjc » Tue Oct 05, 2010 3:11 pm

Nice job... what material did you use.

Harold_V
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by Harold_V » Tue Oct 05, 2010 11:22 pm

fourjc wrote:Nice job... what material did you use.
oldvan wrote:I turned the 1.25" diameter by 6" long shank from a retired reamer
Harold
Wise people talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something.

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oldvan
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by oldvan » Wed Oct 06, 2010 2:51 am

fourjc wrote:...what material did you use.
My AUGUST TRIP TO HGR in Cleveland included some extra goodies in the bin of 600+ end
mills. Among other things there were (2) slightly rusty reamers "1 3/4 HS CHINA" etched
on the shank of them. Since I do not need to ream any 1.750" holes any time soon and
wanted a decent chuck key, I converted the shank of one of the reamers into a chuck key.

Image

The "HS" could imply "High Speed", but a file made a decent scratch in the shaft of the
reamer so I screwed up my courage and gave it a shot. I was able to part, face, mill, drill,
tap and turn the shaft acceptably with HSS tools. Tapping took much more torque than I
felt it should have, in spite of sulfured cutting oil as tapping fluid; that tap hit the garbage
as soon as I finished the hole, no sense inviting fate to break it off in the next hole I
would've used it for.

The "T" handle is a prox. 8" long piece of 0.550" Lay'n Round Steel (Something I had
laying around from who knows where, perhaps a dot matrix printer's demise.)


My next challenge: What to do with a fairly rusty 3 7/8" - 4 tap? My best brainstorm
for it so far is to zap it in my electrolytic rust removal bath for a night, scrub it up,
paint it gold and hang it from the ceiling as a decoration.
Image

Ideas?

Inspector
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by Inspector » Wed Oct 06, 2010 3:57 am

"Ideas?"

Weld or braze it to the end of a pipe about 3 feet long. The next time you and the villagers need to storm the castle you will find it more effective than a wooden pitchfork. :mrgreen: :twisted: :lol:

Good job on the chuck key. How did you machine the square? You didn't mention if you used a mill or the cross slide of the lathe.

Pete

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oldvan
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by oldvan » Wed Oct 06, 2010 4:24 am

Inspector wrote:...How did you machine the square?
1" 4-flute HSS end mill in a collet in my Hardinge UM, shaft in the vise.
Made some pretty gold and silver chips.

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fourjc
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by fourjc » Wed Oct 06, 2010 6:42 am

I did read the part about the "retired reamer" but it never sunk in, Most reamers I ever used were under 1/2 inch and would not have been suitable for your project. I made mine out of a large socket head cap screw, works great and is just the right hardness. That's what I had in the bin.

Claude

Harold_V
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by Harold_V » Wed Oct 06, 2010 11:38 pm

oldvan wrote:The "HS" could imply "High Speed", but a file made a decent scratch in the shaft of the
reamer so I screwed up my courage and gave it a shot. I was able to part, face, mill, drill,
tap and turn the shaft acceptably with HSS tools.
(Chucking) reamers, like twist drills, have soft shanks so they can be chucked properly. They should be readily machineable.

Some assume they have shanks attached, but that isn't so. They are made from a solid piece of material, then induction hardened, which permits a distinct portion to be hardened, while leaving the balance of the material in the annealed condition.

Harold
Wise people talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something.

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Richard_W
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Re: Simple project - Chuck Key for 12" 3-jaw.

Post by Richard_W » Sun Oct 10, 2010 1:56 am

I have been saving an axel out of a chev pickup to make chuck keys with. I am told they are about 50 RC, so it should make a good key. We had made a bunch of chuck keys for the lathes in the shipyard out of old axels and I think they will out last the machine. We used ETD 150 for the handle.

Richard W.

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