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Center marker

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Pete Boorum

Sometimes it is difficult to use the cup centers on a duplicator lathe tailstock with small diameter round material.  Not only does the use of the point center on the Taig tailstock securely hold the stock, it also saves material which is significant when making many pieces or teaching a class.


How to find the exact center of the dowel?


Cut a 1/2" brass rod to about 3/4" long,  face both ends and bevel the edges.  Mark the center with a center drill in the tailstock of the lathe.  Drill a hole about 3/8" deep with a drill the size of the stock you wish to turn.  Make sure the stock slips into the hole with minimal clearance, if not increase or decrease the drill size one number.  If you start a little small you may be able to enlarge the hole size by size to fit properly.  Next drill a small hole all the way through the piece with a small drill.  I used #56 because I had a package and seldom use this size.  Use tapping oil and drill about .050" deep, back off the drill, re-oil and drill another .050"  Do this until you have a through hole.  (I use .050" because that is one rotation of the Sherline tailstock hand wheel.)


Clean the part in lacquer thinner and put the #56 drill in a pin vise.  You now have an accurate center marker for the point of the tailstock spindle.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you Pete, this is a great way to mark a center on round stock. I am learning so many things on this forum!

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