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Starrett # 196 Gauge Needs Repair

Discussion in 'QUESTIONS & ANSWERS (Get Help Fast Here!)' started by road, Apr 3, 2015.

  1. road

    road Active User Active Member

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    Hey all , As the tittle says I have a Starrett model 196 that needs repair .

    the dial needle will not return to zero.
    anyone know or have a approx idea how much Starrett charges for this ?
     
  2. Ebel440

    Ebel440 United States Active User Active Member

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    Maybe you should put up a picture or say what a 196 is so people don't have to look it up. If you make it easier people may be more inclined to try and help.
     
  3. awander

    awander United States Active User Active Member

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    When you say it doesn't return to zero, do you mean it doesn't return to where it started, or it is sticky and the resting point varies?

    The reason I ask, is that you can turn the dial and make zero anywhere you like!

    It may just need cleaning and a small amount of very light oil on the moving parts.
     
  4. Ebel440

    Ebel440 United States Active User Active Member

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    Now that I looked it up its a Dti. Some more information would be helpfull. Is the plunger staying in one place or is it still working and the dial not moving. Iv had trouble with extreme cold causing oil and dirt in mine to thicken up and make it stick. Once it warmed up it was fine. I had one I was able to open up and clean with some carb cleaner and it worked again. Most of the time I've found it's a bad idea to open these things up. You could try looking at the website for Long Island indicator. They had some information about fixing some tools I'm not sure about Dtis though. If you need it to be very accurate send it to starret to be repaired. I don't use any gauge I have repaired for accurate work. It was 70$ to fix a different type of indicator a few years back so it may not be cost effective.
     
  5. awander

    awander United States Active User Active Member

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    These things are pretty simple, if delicate, mechanisms.

    They work using a spiral(think a very coarse thread), gears, bearings and springs.

    Cleaning and lubricating cannot change the accuracy in any way, except possible to make it better by eliminating stick-slip of internal parts.
     
  6. road

    road Active User Active Member

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    Yes it is a dti, a back button type. the needle does not consistently return to where ever Zero is set or the "12 o'clock " point.
    It is a very old gauge. I paid $20 for the Mercer kit # 107A that it came with. The gentleman said it was his grandfathers who was a tool & die maker. Actually my friend and I purchased a lot of his items. some really well made tooling / tooling , a set of mitutoyo inside gauges for $20. a hand made a palmgren type vise even a nice tool chest for $5 etc... all the items were well cared for.
    This dti is a bit sticky...
    feels like there maybe some old grease in it..
    So.. I wanted to know if any one had an idea on the repair prices the Starrett charges if they are reasonable I may get the crystal changed too.

    001.JPG 003.JPG 002.JPG
     
  7. chips&more

    chips&more United States Active User Active Member

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    You could try and put a drop of light oil on the plunger right where it goes into the body of the indicator. As far as getting it repaired, IMHO, I think it would be cheaper to just start over and get another one…Good Luck, Dave.
     
  8. itsme_Bernie

    itsme_Bernie United States Active User Active Member

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    Long Island Indicator Repair on Long Island, NY, has a great rep

    Bernie


    Bernie
     
  9. road

    road Active User Active Member

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    Thanks Bernie, how ya been ?
    I read that L - I repair has had issues with getting Starrett parts or good parts from them .. maybe a falling out ? ?
    Thats why I asked about Starrett ...
     
  10. itsme_Bernie

    itsme_Bernie United States Active User Active Member

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    Things are good man!
    Looks like you may do better to have fun taking it apart, and see if you get lucky, and if not, keep your eyes on Ebay .. Those 196's come up pretty regularly, if not frequently.

    I do the 196 though! I use it all the time

    Bernie
     
  11. awander

    awander United States Active User Active Member

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    Starrett is gonna' charge you around $100.

    If you want me to get it working for you, just send it to me and I'll give it a quick clean/lube; you pay the postage.
     
  12. Andre

    Andre Active User Active Member

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    Probably just junk in the gears, and different speeds of plunger release gives more or less inertia into the dirty, spongy mechanism.

    If the needle stopped at a odd point, say 1 o'clock, you can always pull the needle and reposition it.

    The tool used for that looks like a mini arbor press, but instead of a gear and rack a fine screw. Screw is pointed and pushes the post, lifting the needle. Very handy to have.

    If you send it in for repair, please report back :)
     
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  13. Uglydog

    Uglydog United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I'd be calling Long Island Indicator. As above they have a great reputation. If you are braver than I, then you can also buy parts from them.

    This is a Cut/Paste from their website:
    Starrett (USA) indicators are home-grown favorites and probably the best of the "made in USA" indicators. The new generation has clean, sturdy construction but they still suffer from bushings which will wear out rather quickly and rack teeth which shear off because of the inferior quality metal used in its manufacture. The new plastic bezels make it easier to replace damaged crystals. They are fairly priced and almost always repairable. Back-plunger model 645 is among the best of its kind and can be recommended. Avoid model 196, though. Starrett dial indicators do not come with serial numbers. Their on-line catalog is comprehensive and parts breakdowns are available online.

    http://www.longislandindicator.com/p14.html

    Daryl
    MN
     
  14. george wilson

    george wilson United States Global Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I'd just get a better indicator. In a test I did a few years ago of a Mitutoyo indicator,a Last Word,and a plunger back Starrett I have in new condition,the plunger back took by far the most force to move the needle. Just inherent in the design.

    I tested them by pressing their feelers or plungers against a very sensitive digital diamond weighing scale we have for my wife's jewelry business. I checked how much(in grams)the scale registered to move the indicator .001". The plunger back was much the least sensitive. This means that you are less likely to get the most accurate response from it in actual use. I can't recall the numbers by now,but I certainly recall the order of least sensitivity of the indicators tested.

    Somewhere in this site,my post still remains if you might do a search for it.

    The Mitutoyo was BY VERY FAR the most sensitive. You really want the most sensitive one. Also,the long,thin feeler of the Mitutoyo can much more easily be gotten into difficult or impossible places that the plunger back just cannot reach.

    Many years ago,when I was starting out,I used a plunger back,but have long since moved on.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2015
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  15. Uglydog

    Uglydog United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I've liked my Starrett 645 so much I picked up a 2nd one at a yard sale for $20 last fall.
    Seems heavier and more durable than the 196.
    I'm not sure that it is, and I haven't had them apart of done comparison tests.
    I've not used the Mits.

    Daryl
    MN
     
  16. EmilioG

    EmilioG United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Starrett charges a lot of money for parts, repair and postage. You're better off just investing that money in to
    a new(er) Interapid. They are bullet proof and will only cost you another $60.00 or so if you find a deal.
    LIIS is a great place for information. Email Rene, he is very helpful.
     
  17. george wilson

    george wilson United States Global Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    My first indicator was a plunger back Craftsman. Worked well for several years,then suddenly quit working properly. I took it open,and simply could not find what was wrong with it. Must have been some slight wear on a bearing or something. It was a decent indicator. I wonder who made it?

    My first dial caliper was also a Craftsman. It lasted very well,too. Survived 3 or 4 drops on hard floors. Finally gave up the ghost. Whoever was making their stuff 50+ years ago was doing well.
     
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  18. yendor

    yendor Active User Active Member

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    Starett will give you a quote if you e-mail them.

    I had a 98-8 precision level that needed a main vial.
    Yes I could have done it myself just didn't want to screw it up.
    Vial: $13. & change (can't remember exactly)
    Labor $22.
    Shipping $9.00

    Turnaround 9 days total.

    Can't hurt to send their customer service an e-mail and ask.
     
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  19. road

    road Active User Active Member

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    thanks everyone, I did manage to remove the crystal and lightly cleaned the 196, added a tiny bit of light oil too. seems to work ok now.
    This gauge / Mercer kit is more of an acquisition for future use If I need it.
    Another item for my tooling addiction.
    My machining hobby is soon to be on the back burner for awhile.
    Looking for a new job and R/C boating season is upon us here in Canada.
     
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  20. itsme_Bernie

    itsme_Bernie United States Active User Active Member

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    Wow, that's surprisingly affordable! I am happily surprised to see that they cover their products like this

    Bernie


    Bernie
     
  21. awander

    awander United States Active User Active Member

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    The 645 uses a different technology. The 196 is very simple internally, the plunger has a side pin that rides in a hardened steel "thread" that turns the needle(there may be a gear or 2 in between).

    The 645 uses, IIRC, the rack and pinion that most dial indicators use, coupled to a lot more gears.
     
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  22. GLCarlson

    GLCarlson United States Active User Active Member

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    Last time I did one, $40. Probably double that today (I just had a Last Word done for $75). Starrett service is good, fast, and reasonably priced in my experience.
     
  23. EmilioG

    EmilioG United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    LongIslandIndicator does not repair any Starrett gages. Starrett no longer permits this.
    You can either buy a good used 196 or pay Starrett $114 plus shipping. The 196 is a very simple design.
    With the proper tools, you can repair it yourself. It's probably a dirty hairspring. I have the Starrett repair guide if you're interested.
    You would need to buy several tools and make a special tool to disassemble a 196. Send it to Starrett. At least you'll know that they will do a good job and it the gage will be good as new again.
     
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  24. ericc

    ericc United States Active User Active Member

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    Mine cost 75 to fix.
     

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