Sunday, July 22, 2007

Touchy Touchscreen

I finally got around to attempting to hook up the 15" touchscreen I purchased off eBay to the mill's PC.  I was initially quite impressed as Ubuntu 6.06 recognized it as a Micro Touch screen and loaded the appropriate USB driver right off the bat.  What I didn't realize is what a pain it was going to be to get X to recognize it as pointing device.

To make a long story short, I searched the net for any and all documentation regarding this and found very little.  Google just wasn't giving me the results I wanted.  I finally pieced together enough information to get it working, but I wish Google had sent me to this web site first.  That is exactly the procedure I ended up using.  Had I found that site earlier it would have saved me many hours and curse words!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Enco Phase II+ Quick Change Tool Post for 9x20 Lathe

Rather than mess around with shims to get my lathe tooling centered to the chuck, and to enable me to use boring bars and parting tools, I purchased a Phase II+ quick change tool post from Enco.  After reading a significant amount of information on how to get this piece to fit on the 9x20 lathe, I was a little apprehensive.  However, after about two hours of shop time it is mounted and works great!

The first thing I learned is that making an adapter to get the new QCTP to work with the stock tool post stud is easier than I thought.  I simply took the stud that came with the new post, cut off all but about 0.75" of material below the threads on one end, then drilled and tapped it for M8x1.25.  That enabled me to screw that adapter onto the stock stud, slip the new tool post over it and use the included nut to sinch it down.  Much easier than I thought it would be!

The other thing I learned is that 1/2" tooling seems to work fine for me without modifying the compound slide.  I had read elsewhere that this modification was necessary, however I've got the tool centered and everything seems to work fine.  Perhaps I'm missing something, but if so, I'll likely discover it in the future and, at which point, I'll post my mistake here! :-)