Shortening a DRO Scale - Page 2
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  1. #21
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    Does anyone have experience with shortening a Microsyn scale? e.g. what adhesive did you use to attach the carbon fiber tube to the aluminum fitting at the cut end? How is the tension adjusted?

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    I've made my own stainless and also carbon fiber scales for spherosyn with some ebay carbon tubing. No reason you couldn't do it for microsyn. Stainless tubes get aluminum plugs with the radial crimp, I just epoxied the end plugs in the carbon. I think the carbon tubing that I got was a just a little large for the ball bearings I used, but a single layer of copy paper inserted first into the tube (like a tall piston ring with zero end gap) gave a perfect fit. The other end gets an epoxied plug with a cup ended set screw to bear on the balls. The scales work fine for the work I do on the machine they are installed on, I think you can also calibrate them to compensate for variable errors over their length if you need to but I've never done it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2020-02-27-10.28.58.jpg   20160928_165102.jpg   20160928_165121.jpg   20160929_103727.jpg  

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  4. #23
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    Tom, very cool. Did you use ball bearings with any special accuracy?

    I have a Microsyn scale that has a crack at one end, I would like to shorten it and put it back to use. I was thinkng of using some Loctite retaining compound to attach the aluminum fitting to the carbon fiber. I have some 609, 638 and 680. The last two have a warning that they can damage some plastics, so before I try them on carbon fiber I was hoping someone could confirm whether they work or if there is another product I should use.

    Quote Originally Posted by tomjelly View Post
    I've made my own stainless and also carbon fiber scales for spherosyn with some ebay carbon tubing. No reason you couldn't do it for microsyn. Stainless tubes get aluminum plugs with the radial crimp, I just epoxied the end plugs in the carbon. I think the carbon tubing that I got was a just a little large for the ball bearings I used, but a single layer of copy paper inserted first into the tube (like a tall piston ring with zero end gap) gave a perfect fit. The other end gets an epoxied plug with a cup ended set screw to bear on the balls. The scales work fine for the work I do on the machine they are installed on, I think you can also calibrate them to compensate for variable errors over their length if you need to but I've never done it.

  5. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by rimcanyon View Post
    Tom, very cool. Did you use ball bearings with any special accuracy?

    I have a Microsyn scale that has a crack at one end, I would like to shorten it and put it back to use. I was thinkng of using some Loctite retaining compound to attach the aluminum fitting to the carbon fiber. I have some 609, 638 and 680. The last two have a warning that they can damage some plastics, so before I try them on carbon fiber I was hoping someone could confirm whether they work or if there is another product I should use.
    Aluminum to carbon I would just use JB weld. Aluminum to carbon on the race cars we use Fastweld 10, just expensive JB weld, works about the same it seems like to me.

  6. #25
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    I worried about the ball bearing size accuracy too but then figured as long as they were intended for actual bearings they were going to exceed the precision I needed for my lathe. And unless newall got tricky and used an odd custom size I figured I'd be ok, and the materials were cheap enough to experiment with. I made a short scale first, then did a comparison against a digital caliper and they gave the same measurement after I was able to calibrate with slight tension on the end adjustment screw, which was fine. I suppose if you cannot achieve proper calibration because there is no tension on the screw you might want to get oversize balls, but I don't know how much that would cost compared to just buying a new scale. I'd like to hear what the precise diameter of the microsyn scale balls are. I got some to make up a microsyn scale and think I got the right size but can't remember off hand what size balls I got, I'll need to look. I just used jb weld epoxy for the plugs. It might be good to put a slightly compressible spacer or spring between the screw and ball, ideally a spring that can be completely compressed with the screw without getting misaligned if you need to exceed the spring tension for calibration. Or maybe one of those setscrews with the nylon tips. I don't think I used any springs though, I made these a few years ago. Screw tension on one of the scales I made was just moderately tight, not like you'd worry about pushing out the plug, and the other tension was a little lighter than I would have liked, but it was over 60" long, which is so many balls that they each would need to be so infinitesimally oversize that I don't think I'd be able to measure with what I have here, just to get a little more tension on the screw.


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