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david pierce
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    I have had no experience with Sherline products. The indexing systems I like in general are made out of cast iron and have a worm drive. The worm drive gives an error reduction equal to the gear ratio of the worm to worm gear. That means that if the ratio is 40:1 the position indexing error will be reduced by a factor of 40. If you use a direct indexing plate and the hole is off .002 inches then the gear you are cutting will be off by that same amount (.002 inches). With the worm drive unit with the same error in the hole plate the error would only be .00006 inches. For indexing purposes I prefer the dividing plates with the sector arms as they are much easier to use once set up. The smallest rotary table I could find with the dividing plates and sector arm is a 4″ table. If you can fit that on your Atlas mill you will have a good setup. Bigger more massive machines chatter less and hold the work more firmly under cutter pressure.