Making Tailstock Runners for a WW Lathe



Copyright 2010 by James P. Riser

This is the standard tailstock on one of my WW lathes.

The knob on the right end has been removed for cleaning.

The left end has an internal taper for holding male or female dead centers.

A collet holding adaptor may also be plugged into this taper.

Such lathes have a rather short bed and using the collet holding adaptor takes up too much space.



So I decided to make a couple more useful tailstock runners. This web page documents the techniques I used to make new runners.

Hopefully this information will be useful to others.


I started out by cutting a length of 5/16" air hardening steel (A-2) for the runner.

W-1 (water hardening) or O-1 (oil hardening) steel would also work.





After cutting to length, the end was ground flat and slightly tapered.


I wanted to mount a new Jacobs Taper size 0 drill chuck on the end of this runner for hand held drilling in the lathe.


This tiny taper was to be ground on a Gorton tool grinder.


I looked up the proper angle and diameters for this taper (1.4117 degrees). Small end is .2284". Large end is .2500". Length of taper is .44".

It is impossible to just set the proper angle on my grinder - so I chucked up a standard JT0 taper that I had and set the angle from this.



After dressing the wheel, the next step was to begin the actual grinding. The previously rough ground taper saved time.



A series of small ground flats was made to gently form the proper taper. Below is a sequence of the various stages of grinding.




This is the final grind for the taper.


After test fitting to the new chuck, the length was shortened as needed and a slight chamfer ground on the end.

In use the runner slides within the tailstock and the drill chuck is held by hand. This allows for very sensitive drilling of small holes.


Here are the new drill chuck and runner in use.



Drilling small and larger holes.


The completed setup.


In addition I wanted a new dead center runner. This runner was to be locked into position in the tailstock as needed.


The same grinder was used, angle reset, and a series of flats ground.


These flats were then smoothed out into the new dead center.


The final dead center runner.


I am very pleased with the functionality of these two new runners.

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