Precision Gauge Blocks

Help Support HMEM:

Brian Rupnow

Design Engineer
Project of the Month Winner
Joined
May 23, 2008
Messages
13,017
Reaction score
5,819
Location
Barrie, Ontario, Canada
Precision gauge blocks---how many of you have them and how often do you use them? I can buy an 81 piece set for around $180 but I'm not sure if I would use them enough to justify their cost.---Brian rupnow
 

goldstar31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
3,294
Reaction score
1,161
Location
Twixt Tyne and Tees
Guilty as charged, Me Lud-= Metric and Imperial and a 5 inch sine bar plus dial gauges etc in tenths of thous.
Honest answer before the verdict is read? Forget it all,

However, I would love to have a Facimt machine and a Double Slide Rule.
Reason -- for the Hell of it - again.
 

tornitore45

Well-Known Member
HMEM Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jan 17, 2009
Messages
1,035
Reaction score
257
I bought a set of (cheap) precision disks, about 0.8" diameter with a #10-32 threaded hole in the center, various thickness from 0.050" to 1" They are ground with the "intention" to be accurate but for what I pay I am not counting on much.
They agree with the mike.
I bought them because like most of us I am a toolhaloolic.
I do find them useful and used them a few times. Is a bit like adjustable parallel, I could use them more if my imagination was better at spotting the perfect use.

I used them for:
Operation where a measurement or offset or setting up must be repeated
I interpose one between the carriage stop and the carriage to give me accurate movement
Use narrow one to measure thin slots
I do not like much to readjust my height scale because of loosening 2 picking it up to see where to set it, lock the fine adjustment and fiddle with it, then lock the scribe. So I set up the size(s) I might need repeatedly to speed up the process of tracing a part.
I like to verify with a 6" scale most of my mill table movement to be sure I am not 0.1" off. In some situation the scale does not fit with all the clamps and what not around the set up. A cylinder of the correct dimension is easier to reference in between an edge and a line or a tool.
I used them as I would have used a machinist jack when the jack would be too tall.
 

doc1955

Gone
Joined
Aug 26, 2009
Messages
1,214
Reaction score
128
I have a set and use them quite often. They are nice to have when you need them I have some dial bore gauges and use them to set them up.
 

Tim Wescott

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2018
Messages
300
Reaction score
89
I think that's the sort of tool you get thinking you'll use it once every decade, and then slowly find yourself using it all the time.
 

Sprocket

Well-Known Member
HMEM Supporter
Joined
Jul 19, 2007
Messages
135
Reaction score
51
Location
Northern Vermont, USA
"Measuring bores is the bane of my life!"
I have to agree with that. I could seldom get the "T" gauges to agree two measurements in a row, and even when I thought I had it right, my OD part might not fit my ID part as well as I'd like, and I know the OD parts were correct.
I got one of these www.travers.com/dial-bore-gage-set/p/57-017-678/ this winter, and I think it is making things easier. Directions say to set it with a micrometer, then you are using it as a comparison. I use it as you would a "T" gauge, note the reading, then use the mike to compress it to that reading, and I have my ID. While I doubt I'll ever use it to 6", it will read that. You can see if there is taper as you slide into a bore, and actually measure how much as you go.
Only done a few ID's since, but I have liked the results.
Doug
 

Vietti

Well-Known Member
HMEM Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Dec 8, 2020
Messages
54
Reaction score
38
Location
Thermopolis Wyoming USA
Doug,

Thanks for the info. Looking at bore gauges on eBay I see different styles. Wonder which system is best, for these prices it should pay to get the right one.

Thanks to all. John
 

xpylonracer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2010
Messages
332
Reaction score
82
Location
Norfolk, UK
I have sets of gauge blocks, an imperial set by Coventry to 6" and a very nice Russian 80 piece set to 150mm, the latter were bought at a car boot sale in the Czech Republic in 1987 for very little money, the Coventry set were bought at a factory closing sale and again cost was very low.
The most used is the 0.50mm which I use for tool setting on the milling machine, many of the others have never been used since I had them but on the few occasions when used there is no substitute.
 

Brian Hutchings

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
56
Reaction score
16
Location
Near Mansfield, England
I have an 81 piece set that was returned from calibration with many pieces that did not meet the standards. It was cheaper for the company to buy a complete new set that to replace all the duff ones. I offered to dispose of the old set on guarantee that not would find their way back into the company!
The calibration cert is still with them and the worst error is 109 millionths of an inch which is less than I care to worry about. They are frequently used for marking out, setting up on the mill and occasionally for length setting on the lathe.
Brian
 
Last edited:

Tim1974

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 16, 2016
Messages
77
Reaction score
15
I use every day but for home shop use ? There expensive there’s all ways a different way but if you have the funds why not 👍
 

clockworkcheval

Well-Known Member
HMEM Supporter
Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
81
Reaction score
76
Location
Netherlands
Pure greed once led me to buy a set of 92 (now 91) Hommel Class 1 Precision gauge blocks. To my amazement I use the set quite often. In the first place on the lathe between carriage stop and carriage, in the second place to measure slots and in the third place to measure and set angles with a sine bar based protractor. The precise setting of carriage and angle on the lathe is for precision work like making gear and pinion cutters.

Precision gauge blocks.jpg
Sine bar protractor.jpg
 

Charles Lamont

Well-Known Member
HMEM Supporter
Joined
Mar 24, 2011
Messages
783
Reaction score
244
Location
UK, West Midlands
I have a good pre-owned Matrix set, bought 15 or more years ago for something like £90 on Ebay. I thought at the time they were a bit of a luxury, but I have never regretted buying them. They are used quite often, and often for tasks that would otherwise be difficult to do.
 

kvom

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
3,216
Reaction score
605
I have a set that gets used on occasion. But the 1" block I use as a tool setter on the CNC mill vey frequently.
 

kquiggle

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2012
Messages
390
Reaction score
120
I bought a set several years ago, and use them only occasionally, but I'm glad I bought them because the few times I have needed them they were very helpful. Also quite useful for confirming that your micrometers and calipers are working properly. I would not consider them a "must have" for general metal working - more of a "nice to have" once you have your basic metal working tools in place.
 

L98fiero

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2013
Messages
174
Reaction score
75
Location
Keswick, Ontario
Dumb question no doubt, but how do you use them to calibrate a bore gauge. Measuring bores is the bane of my life!
Here's a picture from the Wikipedia site, I have a similar but longer clamp and just use a couple of pieces of ground, square HSS for the anvil faces at the end, not as accurate as the real thing but as good as you'll need 99% of the time. It's not as good as a reference bore and takes a little fiddling to set the bore gauge but it's better than trying to set the bore gauge with an outside mike. Obviously this won't work for setting the three point bore mikes.
1618924836436.png
 

Richard Hed

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2018
Messages
1,031
Reaction score
228
Location
Seattle
Set up the required measurement with the slip gauges with an extra piece at each end protruding. The distance between the extras is the setting for the bore gauge.
Rotor,
In your icon, you have a gyrocopter. Do you have a vid of it flying? How many people does it carry? What is the horse power? How far can you fly on a tank of gas?
 

awake

Well-Known Member
HMEM Supporter
Joined
Sep 4, 2019
Messages
1,118
Reaction score
458
Location
North Carolina
Brian, I understand and affirm your hesitation on this, and am pleased to offer a solution. If you will go ahead and buy them, and have them shipped to me, I will test to see how often they get used and give you a report. Note that we will need a sufficient length of time to account for the intermittent nature of my machine shop time - maybe 5 years?

No, no, no need to thank me; I am happy to offer this service free of charge, simply out of the goodness of my heart. Please let me know when to expect the gauge set.

:):):)
 

goldstar31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
3,294
Reaction score
1,161
Location
Twixt Tyne and Tees
But you see that you really need to use a controlled temperature water bath to get the best out of your Jo Blocks. :) Well, surprise, surprise but tou do.

It's a bit like checking viscosities using a a PRS Viscometer or a perhaps Number 4 Ford cup.
Again, I DO know Statistical Quality Control. Never mind the why's and wherefores but it is not far renoved from the maths in Cost Accountancy;)

But in most cases, a set of Jo Blocks is overkill and something simpler and you can't have somebody with a set to jumble and spill so something could be desirable.
A set of homemade 'blocks' i say 1/16th or a set in millimetre intervals often suffices!. I have cheap and far from nasty set of professionally made metric ones!
Sometimes a 6" Ruler 'stuck' to a square block can be used to set up work- Quickly.

Again, I made up a set of spring loaded indicators for setting up stuff in a 4 jaw independent chuck.

Of course-- ho ho ho, I use a centre pop and - that's it.
And of course, I have rather wonderful DRO system on the Myford and a cheap and actually quite nasty so called DRO

Oh and perhaps, I have drifted off but I have--- shush-- stub drills

N
 

Latest posts

Top