By Jose F. Rodriguez

The TAIG drilling tail stock is rather unique in that is the only one of its kind in the small lathes and in fact, I have seen machinists try to incorporate this feature into the tail stock of their large machines. The only problem with the TAIG drilling lever is that in my opinion is too short, without sufficient leverage to drill a hole larger than 1/8" in steel. The lever itself is made out of common 1/8" thick x 1/2" wide cold rolled steel, available through any industrial supply and tool company. I chose to make my new lever twice as long so I hack sawed a piece of stock to about 12" long and ground the sawed edges smooth. I removed the old lever from the tail stock by unscrewing the pivot screw and nut and driving a split dowel pin out.

The old lever was placed directly on top of the new one and the hole locations were transferred with transfer punches. A transfer punch is a punch made of drill rod material with a little centered point on one end. To use, you first align the part with the original holes on top of the new part and clamp them together. Insert the correct diameter punch through the original punch and strike it with a hammer. The point of the punch will locate the center of the new hole on the new part. I now drilled the holes and simply replaced the new lever where the old one was. The drilling lever now produces about four times the leverage of the old one, making drilling relatively effortless. I also rounded the corners of the end of the new lever in case I catch it against my side if I happen to pass by the lathe without looking.

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