After a recent project that required a lot of drilling, I decided I needed a better way of locking my tailstock in place. When I purchased my lathe it came with a 19mm wrench for locking the tailstock. It worked fine for occasional use, but was a pain when you needed to move the tailstock a lot. I considered making a cam lock tailstock, but they can’t provide the clamping force a wrench can.
Below is the solution I came up with, it’s a shortened 19mm reversible ratchet wrench. It’s as quick and easy to use as a cam lock mechanism, with the added benefit of producing a lot more torque. A short stiff spring between the base casting and the locking plate insures enough tension on the bolt to make the ratchet actuate.