Saturday, 24 August 2013

Well another week has come and gone. Had some interesting days at work so was nice to be able to come home relax a little, and then spend some time in the shop working on the tools. First thing I did this week was to clean and buff up the carriage rack track. Spent one evening on this and once she was nice and shiny threw some oil onto the back and top sides that fit against the lathe and secured her back in place. Here's a picture of the finished job.
The following day I did a little clean up the welding table and brought out the gearing section and started to strip it down to component parts. I'll attach a picture of the entire unit and then all the pieces laid out awaiting work. The first piece that will be worked on will be the Quick Change gearbox housing that will be stripped, cleaned and painted.  Here are pictures of these items

Then on Wednesday the cutters arrived so I could finish milling the shelf bracket for the #39 lathe. One of the cutters had just the right radius on the cutter head to give me a nice finish and curve on the upper rear support arm. Here is a picture of the cutters received and the tray bracket after the top arms are milled.

 Once the upper arms were milled and the lower forward arm was milled that left me the rear lower arm to smooth up. I do not have the milling machine or cutting heads to be able to do that so I had to do it the old fashioned way. I had to do it by hand with large files. Here is a link to a quick You tube video showing me filing the part. When that was done I used various size sanding wheels in the Drill press and on a dremel tool to smooth the rough casting down a considerable amount. At one time I thought about using Bondo to get it real smooth however after priming it I think it is good enough. Here is a picture of the item once all the milling was done.
With the milling and sanding done it was time to drill the holes to mount it to the lathe. I cut out a piece of bristol board and taped it to the lathe and used a ball peen hammer to find the 4 holes and carefully make impressions in the paper. Once that was done I used punches to punch out the spot where the holes would be. After a quick check to make sure the holes lined up I laid out the template on the bracket and drilled one hole. I then placed the template back on the lathe bolted the bracket on with one bolt and then leveled it up to the lathe and taped the template to the bracket so that I could transfer the remaining three holes. Here are two pictures showing this.

After the four holes were drilled we again mounted it on the lathe just to check it out. Earlier I suspected an issue and now it was confirmed. When the lathe was poured in the foundry the casting had a slight roundness at the end where the tray bracket mounts. This was most likely caused by the "draft" required in the mould when they poured the cast iron. The original bracket I have has no cut out or bend to fit this roundness. Since I did not want to put a thick shim behind the bracket I elected to take another cut on the mill and remove the centre section of the two bumpouts where the bolt holes are located. Once that was done I remounted it to check the fit. This time it fit much better and I will probably only need thin shims to ensure 100% contact. I even threw the trays on to see how it looked. Here's a couple of photo's showing the extra cut out and the temporary mounting with the shelves.

Once I knew it would fit it was time to drill the holes for the rivets. I carefully laid out 4 holes per tray and drilled 3/16" holes to accept the homemade rivets I would be making. Once the holes were drilled I made a rough calculation on how long the rivet should be and cut 10 pieces, 2 extra. I then drilled into a block of cast iron a hole 3/4" long with a counter sink at the top. I also came from the bottom and drilled a small hole in the bottom of the hole so that I could push out the rivet once I made the countersink portion of the top of the rivet. I then placed the blank in the hole heated the exposed piece to white hot and hammered down the top portion to form the countersunk top of the rivet. Unfortunately ran out of Oxygen doing this so only formed 6 rivets. Will need to pick up another tank to finish the rest of the rivets. Here are a couple of pictures showing the setup to drill the holes and make the rivets.

As you can see the countersunk portion was a little thick and when I placed them in the tray even with a countersunk hole they stood up. So I went to plan B. I placed a rivet in each hole on the tray and placed the tail of the rivet in the forming block a couple of hits with a heavy hammer and the rivet top dimpled the tray metal such that the rivet was pretty close to even with the tray top. Once the rivets are locked in place I will sand the rivet head down a little such that it is relatively smooth to the tray top. Once the trays were dimpled I sprayed the tray support casting with primer and called it a day. Tonight I'll pick up another bottle of Oxygen and tomorrow we'll finish the rivets and most likely rivet the trays to the bracket. Once that's done I'll spray the colour coat on the complete assembly twice and once dry we'll mount it to the lathe. However that will only be done once I make the 4 bolts required. That will get done next week. Here are a couple of pictures showing the rivets tops after they dimpled the tray and the bracket hanging to dry once sprayed.

 Since I have the coming week off work I hope to have a fair amount of work done by the next time I talk to you. Until then have a great week enjoy the long weekend coming up and remember stay safe out there.


Saturday, 17 August 2013

Good afternoon again. I hope you're all having some very nice weather. Our temperature is starting to climb again, and reached 28C today, with some humidity. Next week it's supposed to get warmer still. Those might be the days I wish I had an air conditioned shop. Oh well all this sunshine is great for my solar panels the more sunshine the more money. :=):=)
Anyway it wasn't a good week and it wasn't a bad week. Went back to work on Monday and therefore worked all week and did not have a lot of time to spend in the shop. However I did manage a little machining in the evening, however not to much, probably spent more time talking with the neighbours and watching the kids run around the yard. One reason I was in no rush to do a lot of milling was that I have purchased some resharpened shell mills. They should arrive this week and a few of them have radiused corners. The upper shelf arm can accept a rounded corner so I'm going to wait till the shell mills get here before finishing the milling operation on the upper arm. Here's a picture though of the setup with a few runs through with the shell mill I already have. The setup may look tipsy but it's holding the bracket relatively solid so far. Eventually I'll need to pick up better blocking to secure items however it's all I have for now. Actually along with this I'm still looking for a Van Norman Vice to go along with this mill so if anybody has a line on one please let me know.

On Saturday morning after going into work for a few minutes first, I did a little cleanup of the garage, and then decided it was time to get #86 back on her legs. Previously this week I had bolted the two cabinets back onto the lathe body. Then today I rotated it onto a set of sawhorses and with the neighbours help placed the lathe body onto the tray. Once that was done I carefully extended the whole affair over the end of the temporary table and bolted the left hand legs to the bottom. As well prior to this I had made up the two convex washers I needed for the ride hand side legs. So after the left side was secure slide the lathe completely off the temporary table and onto a support so that I could bolt the right hand leg onto the lathe. The left side has 4 bolts and secures the leg to the lathe solidly. The right side has two bolts and has a convex washer between the tray and the top of the leg. These two bolts are longer and have a .500"spring on the bottom of the bolt before the nut. Once these bolts are snug it still allows the lathe to flex a little which will happen with changes in temperature. Here is a picture of the lathe sitting on a pair of homemade dollies.

Look pretty good if I say so myself. The red lettering actually looks real good on the charcoal grey that I'm painting the lathe with. I also hung the collet tray underneath as well. This has a set of collets that is complete with the exception of 7 from 1/64 to 7/64ths. Eventually I'll find these as well and fill out the collection. 
I plan to finish the tray bracket this week, once the cutters arrive, and fit it onto the #39. I'll also look at 
attaching the tray bracket to this lathe the #86 as well since I have that one already. After that is done we'll start work on all the gearing that goes onto the left side of the lathe. 
On a further side note it looks like we've found an individual who may have upto 4 more of these lathes in his collection. I plan on talking with him again this weekend and hopefully somewhere down the road I can confirm this story and provide pictures of the new additions to our list of Hardinge Cataract QC's. Along that line if you know of anybody who might have one of these lathes please talk to him and see if he's been in contact with me. If not please direct him to this site and ask him to leave a comment so that I can contact him if they would be interested in talking to me.  We'd really like to know where as many of these lathes are. At this time I have a database of at least 30 lathes with the possibility of 4 more as discussed. As well I'm in contact with 14 people who own these lathes however there are still owners out there who I don't have contact with and would love to hear from.

Until next week have fun out there and please be safe.


Sunday, 11 August 2013

What a week. Drove home to the parents in St Catharines on Saturday and then drove out on Sunday to Kalamazoo Michigan to go to my maternal grandmother's funeral. Was nice to see the family members again even if under sad reasons. Weather held off and allowed us to be at the gravesite when she was lowered in the ground. Now she and my grandfather will be back together again. We came home on Thursday and by Friday afternoon I was back in my own house.
Needless to say I did not get much done this week. However I did manage to start my first milling job on the Van Norman #10. This was to start milling the castings I had made up for me by Lake Foundry in Grimsby Ontario. The first stage was to carefully set up the casting such that I could machine the base area. This casting is awkward and slightly spindly such that securing the casting would be interesting. On the way home I had picked up some 1,2,3 blocks from KBC who had them on sale for 19$ a pair and this helped with securing the item. Once the item was as locked down as I could get it I carefully machined down the two "legs" and the space between them such that it will sit flat up against the side of the lathe body. It took a little manipulating to ensure I had it in the right spot so that it was square to table and to the tray support arms that still needed to be machined. Here are a few pictures showing the bracket getting the base milled. Here is a link to a Youtube video showing the milling operation. I used a shell mill that came with the mill and bought shell mill holders to secure the cutter. Unfortunately I got a little too aggressive and damaged two of the cutting edges before I finished the base. Luckily even with the damaged cutting edges I could still manage to finish the base.

Once the base was done I removed it from its clamps and reset it on the mill table to be able to mill the tray support arms. Again I carefully set it up to enable me to remove the least amount of metal and still have the trays flat and level. I won't be able to prove this until I install it however it looks good so far. I'll only be able to mill the one support arm for the lower tray and I'll include a picture of this however the inner support arm is obscured by webbing and means I'll have to smooth this one the old fashioned way with files. The upper tray support arm will be able to be milled on both locations.  So here are a few pictures of the setup, and milling the lower support arm.

Over the remainder of the week once I get home from work I hope to be able to slowly finish all the milling operations that are needed to finish this tray bracket. Once that's done I'll carefully locate and drill the holes that accept the bolts that secure this to the lathe. Once that's done I'll do some bondoing and sanding to smooth out the casting and then paint it to match the lathe. So I still have some work ahead of me.

As an add on a couple of weeks ago I mentioned that a fellow in Ohio who has one of these Hardinge Cataract lathes was looking to sell his lathe. He's asked me to mention it again and advise that new price is 2250$ for everything that he has. If you are interested in knowing more please contact me by leaving a comment and I'll connect you up with him.

See you all next week.
Harold Mulder

Friday, 2 August 2013

I'm posting a little early this week as I will not be here on Sunday. On Thursday 01 Aug at 1130pm my Grandmother who was 101 years old finally left this earth. So on Sunday I'll be driving enroute Kalamazoo with the parents to go to her funeral.
Early this week on Tuesday I took a drive to Vershire Vermont and picked up a Van Norman 10" dividing head with tailstock and 3 dividing plates. It's in really good shape but a lot bigger than I anticipated. It was missing a collet draw bar which I'll talk about later and it is also missing a Chuck. This chuck could be either a 4" or 6" chuck with 2.25" dia thread with 12 TPI spacing. If anybody knows of a Van Norman chuck or other manufacturer with these parameters please contact me. After picking up the dividing head went down to Harvard Mass. and spent the night. Next morning went and visited Jeff at Tools4cheap and picked up a set of shell mill holders for the Van Norman Mill. So spent a pleasant 2 days on the road driving through some scenic country side. Had to be careful near Massena NY as I ended up passing approx a dozen horse and buggies from possibly Amish persuasion thank goodness they were going in the opposite direction so as to get a better look at them.
Once I got back home it was right to work. The Hardinge #39 Lathe has had a bit of a workout in these last couple of weeks. First we needed to make the collet draw bar for the VN#10 milling head and now we had to make a collet draw bar for the dividing head. Essentially this draw bar was made the same way as the last one with the exception of length and some diameters to fit the hole in the dividing head. I'll attach a few pictures showing the parts being machined. One thing I did different was that when I welded the two pieces together I used the lathe to hold them in place between centres so as to prevent the draw bar from going off centre due to the welding process. This worked like a charm. And yes I had to file the 3/4" bolt head by hand again. Can't wait to get the milling machine up and running so I won't need to do things like that again.

 One quick thing I did for the #86 Lathe was to make new spacers that go between the lathe and the two cabinets so that filings don't fall into the cabinets. I also primed and painted them the same beige colour as the inside of the cabinets. Here's a picture of them as well. And yes the observant ones will notice and extra hole in one of the sheets. Seems like I forgot about the measure twice cut once saying.

 Early in the week I also took some time to make the two long bolts I needed to secure the cabinets to the legs. These are the ones that have the spring on them to allow the lathe to flex a little as the cast iron moves due to temperature fluctuations. I also wire wheeled the 8 bolts to bolt the cabinets to the lathe body. Once I get back from the funeral I hope to be able to put the lower half of the #86 lathe back together and have her rolling around the shop on her dollies.
Well that's all for now we'll see you again next week with another installment of "As the lathe turns":-):-):-)