Sunday, November 9, 2014

New toy - Taig II Model 4500 lathe

I just received my newest tool porn, a Taig II Model 4500 lathe.

These are not light duty watchmaker's lathes, but can hog off respectable amonts of mild steel without problems.

It has a one year history of use and a 10 year history of sitting unused.  It came with a number of add on accessories that will really add to it's potential.  In addition to the normal package it came with a 4 jaw self centering chuck, Jacobs tail chuck that fits over the dead center on the drilling tailpiece.  It also has the milling tower attachment for the cross slide, and some kind of indexint jig attached to it.

Also present is a movable tool rest for wood turning with hand held gouges.

It needs a good cleaning and oiling and remounting to it's base.  i am going to look into a powered lead screw option and replace the cross slide knob as it's handle broke off during shipping, an inexpensive replacement.  There are a number of modifications depicted online showing larger handles that rotate around the mounting bolt that would make it easier to operate.  I will look into those as well as some replacement handwheels from Sherline that have a resettable dial.

This is going to be a help and a distraction to my miniature builds, but oh well....  =)

10 Nov update..

I talked with a Taig dealer who said that the replacement knob will not fit this lathe as they changed it after this one was born.  No problem though, i just ordered a complete cross slide screw assembly that has the new dial and knob for under 25 bucks.  Reasonable for me.  Future posts til it arrives will be cleaning and oiling....

17 Nov update...

The new screw assembly arrived and went in easily.  I went ahead and set the lathe up in a temporary location, my shop being all discombobulated so contractors can wander in and out.   

One of the first reasons I got this was to do cans for the store roombox, so I chucked a piece of aluminum up and this is the result;

Both end shoulders turned at same time, then cut off, and wrapped in tape to level out for rechucking.

End result is a convincing can.

I am going to try it again with mild steel to see if it looks more cannish, and a little taller so that the labels I have will fit.  I cannot get to my printer to resize the labels so I guess I am gonna have to play with the new lathe some more...  oh darn....

stay tuned.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Razor blade saw fabrication

Micro Mark has a ad for some double edge razor blades with saw edges...  While wondering how to slot the fingerboard for the guitar build I lusted after some, just not with the cost and shipping.

I have a large box of single edge razor blades and decided to try converting one or more into some sort of saw blade.

The technique I used turned out to be very successful in creating teeth that cut a very thin kerf.  The blade's body measures 0.008", and the cutting edge is considerably thinner than that.  I clamped the blade in a small clean faced vise and tapped the protective cover flush with the top of the blade body inside.

I then took a set of forceps and a large metal file and holding the blade with the forceps at a 90 degree angle to the file teeth, resting on the file, I struck the top of the blade with a hammer which left regular sharp dents in the cutting edge which work very well as a saw.

The first was a fairly fine file which left fine teeth.

The coarser large file left larger spaced teeth and is the one I am using. 

I tried this as well with mixed results, clamping a fence along the direction of the teeth on a rusty file, then dragging the blade across the teeth.  I was able to do this more than once since the teeth registered with the teeth on the file.  I still have better results striking with a hammer though.

I have still to try hammering them at different angles to the file teeth, but will leave that to the masses and/or for another day.

Here is the result on a work copy of a fingerboard for frets.   Nice narrow slots.