This page was created to showcase tools I have made. They were beginning to clog up other pages. They say necessity is the mother of invention, but quite often it is just plain fun to make your own. The obvious advantages are that you make them exactly the way you want them and the cost is much lower than commercial suppliers.


 I built this knurler after waiting too long for a supplier to refill stock. It is mostly CRS with drill rod pivots and axles. The axles are hardened. It fits any tool holder that accepts 5/16 tools. Its first job was to knurl its own knob. The knurls are available from and Enco. Note that all knurlings shown below were done with this tool. A discussion of knurling can be read here.

 This little guy is a carriage stop. Just a bit of CRS with a screw with knurled knob. there is a brass button pressed into a hole in the end of the screw to prevent damage to the ways. In use, it is slipped over the rear way and tightened. The carriage stops when it hits it. CAUTION: Do not use lead screw drive with this.


 This was an interesting project. I got seriously upset with a commercial fly cutter after it dug in for the Nth time. It was the typical angled down type. A hint from another site put me on to this idea and 1/2 hour later I had this one running. It is just a 3-1/2 inch piece of 1/2 by 3/4 CRS, with a hole bored and a slot with set screws. The hole is 1/2 inch with a piece of 1/2 inch drill rod pressed in. The slot is 1/8 inch, a bit longer than the insert and a quarter of an inch deep. The set screws are 8-32. It uses the TPG322 insert, as shown. It is many levels better than the commercial model. It runs smoother because it is heavy and well balanced. The cuts are better than anything I have ever done with the commercial model.

 This is a little junk box scriber I built when I had a sudden need for one to mark a casting kit. It is a little of everything in the metal line. The base is powder coated CRS. It worked OK, but has its limitations. See the new one on the projects page.    There are many uses for a nice little brass hammer. I use one like this one to release the mini-mill drawbolt. This one is wedged for other uses. It is about 5 inches long. These are easy to make. It is a great first project for a new hobbyist.

 This is a chuck cleaner for those times that a rod seems to refuse to settle in centered. It is usually a tiny chip somewhere in the jaws that is at fault. The brush is a 12-gauge shotgun cleaning brush threaded into a locally turned handle of 3/4 inch aluminum.


 These guys are die holders. I use 13/16 dies a lot and needed a nice straight holder for the lathe. The larger one is for #10 and 1/4 inch threads to give me a good grip on larger sizes. I mostly use the smaller one for other sizes. It is more comfortable.


   Here is the small holder chucked up in the lathe tailstock for use. It slips over the 3/8 inch brass guide where it is hand held and pushed onto the slowly rotating rod to be threaded. When the proper length is reached you just let go and let it spin until the lathe can be stopped.

 This is my ball cutter. It is mostly 6061-T6 aluminum. The black oxide parts are CRS. I cut the dovetails by the shave-a-little and test fit method until I got a snug, but not tight fit. There is no detectable slop in the track and there are no gibs.

 The cutter is a common 60 degree thread cutter (carbide) locked in place by two set screws. The head drive screw has a ridge that retains a warped washer that keeps enough tension on the screw to prevent its movement when in operation. The pivot handle is 1/4 inch drill rod topped by a 3/4 inch ball bearing. You can drill bearings if you anneal them. The unit is seen in the last photo with the base mount pivoted out to show the mount holes. It mounts on the lathe replacing the compound slide