A quick project to mill a couple of woodruff keys in a shaft and to broach a matching keyway in a hole for a repair on a Clausing metal lathe. We use the Wells-Index Vertical Milling Machine to cut the Woodruff keys and then a hydraulic press to broach the keyway in a hole.


36 thoughts on “Keyways – Cutting Woodruff Key Slots and Broaching”
  1. What diameter cutter did you use and what size key? I need to make one in a 9/16” shaft. The width of WK is 3/16” but I’m unsure of the cutter for that, 1/2 or 3/4” dis cutter.

  2. Thank you sir , you saved my bacon. Never cut a woodruff key before and to top it off it ended up being a rush job. Your video was very helpful. If I may suggest , could you do a video on tapered shafts? Thank you again.

  3. Decided to subscribe because weirdly this isn't the first time Ive come across your videos trying to learn something and actually did in a very informative and basic matter 🙂

  4. Nice work. You taught me something about reinstalling the Woodruff key in my Toro 824 snowthrower. (Impeller bearing replacement necessitated it's removal/reinstall). And, how you cut the slot and keyway using mill and broach. Very awesome. Thank you for making and posting this video. God Bless. tonyd.

  5. Why not lower the y, and zero off on the other side? That'd be easier than taking the part out of the vise. That way you know the other key slot is very precisely aligned to the other side.

  6. 1/8 by 1/2 woodruff key. That will be a cutter No 404. Diameter comes first and is the number of 1/8 in diameter. Second portion is width and that is the number of 32' of an inch wide the key is. It is in Machinery's Handbook. For example I had to bye a 606 and it is 5/8 by 3/16. Cheers from John Australia. PS The cutter cost 109 Dollars Aus, I had to do this to do the job. It is a fairly common size keyseat.

  7. Tell us about your band-aid.frame 13:53 … i have one too…HA! does not matter how long you have been doing this sometimes you want to clear a chip away and forget…I got an end-mill right through my nail for it…

    Great video again by the way!

  8. (I don't know much about machining, only what I've learned from your channel.) So the broaching, where you were using the press to force that cutting tool through your work piece to cut the slot for the keyway …. Is that effective? It's seems a little barbaric compared to the first process you showed, where you were zeroing out the measurements, carefully monitoring the depth…. Cool video, I like the length and the content.

  9. Thanks Keith. Quick question-what are the advantages of a woodruff key over a straight key? I assume the rounded bottom must supply some benefit to justify the added work.



  10. Congrats on your numbers! When you find the time would you put some small wire rope in the springs on the press so if they break the springs wont fly out and hit you in the face. It just happened to a friend of mine and now he may lose the sight in his left eye.

  11. Hi Keith, Been watching your video's for the past couple of years and have certainly found them very informative and interesting. My qualifications are in commercial diving and electronics, though I have done a verity of machining. Keep up the good work!

  12. ………great show, even the little things take time and attention to details……….side note, …..maybe install some flat poly/nylon behind those side slides on your hydraulic press…..the horizontal rail is all over the place………..make it easier to set things up, and less likely to bend tools and parts with out all the slop….Unless a new one is in the works ……lol……….nice work Mr Rucker.

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