MPCNC: DeWalt DW660 Collet Grip Removal

The MPCNC uses a DW660 Cutout tool as a low-cost spindle for tools with 1/8 and 1/4 inch shanks. It features a tool-free “collet grip” to twist the collet nut against the shaft lock, which is convenient for a hand tool and not so much for a CNC spindle: I find it difficult to get two hands into the MPCNC setup with the proper orientation to push-and-hold two locking buttons, while applying enough torque to twist the collet nut:

DW660 - collet grip
DW660 – collet grip

Fortunately, it’s easy enough to remove the collet grip. Remove the collet nut, unscrew the four screws holding the yellow snout in place, then pull the snout straight off to reveal the spindle lock plate:

DW660 - nose cap interior
DW660 – nose cap interior

Capture the spring, slide the spindle lock plate out to expose the snap ring (a.k.a. Jesus clip) holding the collet grip in place:

DW660 - collet grip snap ring
DW660 – collet grip snap ring

Remove the snap ring, make the appropriate remark, pull the collet grip out of the snout, reassemble the snout in its One Correct Orientation, and you’re done:

DW660 - collet grip removed
DW660 – collet grip removed

The retroreflective tape snippet let my laser tachometer report a top speed over 29 k rpm, pretty close to the advertised 30 k rpm.

If one were fussy, one would 3D print a thing to cover the snout’s open end:

DW660 - snout cover
DW660 – snout cover

The original snap ring holds it in place and the fancy pattern comes from octogram spiral infill on the bottom.

The collet nut fits either a 5/8 inch or 16 mm wrench, both of which stick out to the side far enough for a convenient hold while pressing the shaft lock button.