"One Perfect Part at a Time"


Weekend Puttering

While waiting for the new stepper couplings for the HB2 to arrive, I decided to do a little house cleaning around the shop. After pushing things around for a few hours, and sucking up what debris I could with the shopvac, I figured I should lube the ways on my machine tools. I can appreciate a one shot lube system as I have to do mine the long slow way. I finished and every machine is operating pretty slick now…

I spent a lot of time detailing out the Taig CNC mill. It is still in wonderful shape after all the machining it has done. That is really a great little milling machine in its size and class. I had to fire it up with the MACH3 in control and it wasn’t long before I was dreaming about the next project I should be running in CNC on that machine. In fact I “air cut” a couple of projects just to give the parts (mechanical and electronic) a little work out. It runs so sweet!

I have added a new Proxxon rotary hand tool to my workbench. I have more than I can handle (literally) but there is always room for just one more. This new tool is the Proxxon Micromot 50/E low voltage rotary hand tool. This is the first one of the 12-18 volt tools I have tried and I am amazed!

I already have and operate the Proxxon IB/E professional 120 Volt rotary tool. It is wonderful and definitely exceeds my two Dremel rotary tools in quality.

The 50/E is about ½ the size and power of the IB/E but is every bit as good. It is lighter, smaller and easier to hold for long periods of detail rotary work. I think I will prefer using… Continue reading

Small Update

I haven’t written here for some time. I have been spending a lot of time on the HB2 making stuff from wood that just didn’t seem appropriate for posting here on the machine shop blog. However, it is machine work when you come right down to it. It just isn’t a METAL machine shop project; picky, picky.

Yes!! I have posted SOME of the wood projects so the choice isn’t an absolute.

I have started to build up a materials order sheet for making a small model airplane diesel engine. It looks like a fun project and totally within my capabilities. I may have to push a little into some inside threading work that I have not done but that doesn’t stand out as a problem. There will also be some machining of clear plastic required for the fuel tank. I am wondering how that will go. That is also new to me.

I have been kicking another interesting opportunity (for using the machine shop) back and forth through emails with a friend. You may know that I am a long time (40+ years) Amateur Radio enthusiast. There is an area in UHF and SHF radio type activity that could use the skills of a machinist. The microwave bands use very short wavelengths measured in inches or less. The radio generation, amplification and transmission equipment is not made like High Frequency equipment. There are NOT a lot of wires and discrete components connected together in a loose arrangement. That just doesn’t work at microwaves. Many parts are actually machined from solid metal and use extremely precise dimensions in cavities and rod length and other very mechanical contraptions. Metal patterns on circuit boards become active radiation components just from their shape and location.

I have a fair idea how all this… Continue reading

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