GSMEE Meeting 23 June 2021

by John

I made them promise to not make me laugh or cough or do any heavy lifting. And it was a pleasure to attend another face to face GSMEE meeting after a few weeks of Zooming.

John Bernoth has made his Kant Twist clamps from the laser cut arms. He used countersunk screws to hold the pins, instead of peening the ends, so he could easily disassemble the tool if required, and because he had the screws already. Used aluminium jaws. These are the small clamp version.

And Swen Pettig brought along his Grasshopper beam engine for a progress assessment.

It is looking very interesting. Not finished, but is apparently running on compressed air. The flywheel is made from assembled machined pieces which are screwed and silver soldered and peened together. Double acting cylinder has 3″ stroke 1.5″ bore. I am really looking forward to seeing it running on steam.

Swen has also recently made this sphere making lathe attachment. The cutter is a 6mm diameter TC disk. He showed us an example of a job, which has a lovely finish and excellent shape, but a rather thick neck. Swen plans to make another cutting tool with a sharper point to make thinner necks on the spheres. Chatter has not been a problem with this tool.

I am not quite ready to show the Armstrong RML gun, because it is still waiting for me to get back into the workshop for some finishing touches, so I brought some goodies to show which I recently bought from Banggood.

A pair of hold downs for the mill or mill drill. These are really nicely made and finished. $aud25 each.
A smallish square with an extra face, which should be useful for set ups on the mill. I had previously bought the smallest size, so adding to the set. Cost was around $aud15 from memory. Again, well made and seems accurate.

And this one is a woodworking tool, which I have wanted for some time, but the US version is about x4 the cost , and postage is an extra deal killer. The costs mentioned all included postage.

It is a marking gauge, 0-200mm, with 0.2mm divisions. About $aud20.
Made in You Know Where, but the fact is, that this stuff from Banggood is really nice. Whatever we think of their government, the goods are usually excellent.

Today I picked up the laser cut metal plate which will become the small drill sharpening jig. For drills bits up to 3mm. You might ask why bother? Well, I can see the jig being used where I want a really sharp tiny drill, on a critical job. I would touch up the cutting edges on even a new bit.

The crosses at the drilling points are a bit of a nuisance. I had asked for a mark only. The full thickness crosses will have to be drilled very carefully to avoid breaking the drill bit. If they prove to be a big problem I will have to get the parts remade.

The drill bits to be resharpened will be held in a small collet chuck, purchased commercially for about $10, including 3 collets. The lasering cost about $5 each.