Thursday, May 24, 2018

Dismantling Rust

So I got the Cavalier into the ventilated shop this morning and got a start at dismantling it. I hate unibodies. I dismantled one back in the 80's, it was made shortly after unibodies were introduced and there was still a lot of extruded aluminum on them, like the bumpers. Now a days aside from the engine assembly, axles and wheel assemblies, most of what is snapped or bolted to that unibody is plastic (mountains of it), foam, and rubber. The few metal panels are thin as paper. I have driven a body on frame truck since I started driving. I got the Cavalier to save on gas, for a 100 mile return commute to work, that I did for 10 years. I'll hopefully never have to drive a unibody again. Ha ha. Don't get me wrong the unibody is actually designed to be safer in minor crashes. The unibody is designed to crumple in a step by step, more controlled fashion. My beef with the low end models, is that they are to much like the disposable society we have become. Difficult to repair with poor quality parts, after ten years up here with the salt on the road in the winter and rough roads everywhere, they are usually  done.

Here's a couple of pictures. It's going to take a while to get this all stripped down. 

I think it was on "The Big Bang Theory" that someone said "Your degree of white trash is measured by how many junked cars are in your yard." Ha, ha. I guess I am back to zero again. lol.


Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Fire Wood Or Lumber

So I got out this morning to clean up that downed spruce in "Sawmill Dreams". Cleaned up the saw, new bar and chain and we're ready to go.

There is a large poplar by the lane way near my power line I have been keeping an eye on. Looking up today 15-20 feet from the top I saw streaks of red sap running down the tree from holes in the trunk. The bugs and the woodpeckers going after them, were greatly weakening the trunk in that area. The next good wind storm is likely to snap the top off onto my power line, so down it comes.

Fresh woodpecker hole, going after the bugs.

Chances are a good wind storm would have snapped it off right here. Definitely weakened by the bugs and woodpeckers.

This pine was dead and dried out. I bumped it a few times with the tractor bucket when I did the cut and fill landscaping in this area 3 years ago. I had hoped it would survive, but no, so down it comes.

This is that spruce in the "Sawmill Dreams" post, delimbed and cut into 3-8 ft. lengths and a 18 ft. top.

All loaded up, haven't worked this hard in over 6 months, I'll feel it tomorrow. Working the springs on the old truck too, at 23 years old though, it just keeps on going. A very cold winter a decade ago, I froze the rad. and fried the bearings on it, half way to work one night. I traded the motor in on a rebuild and thats about the only problem I have ever had with it, and that was my fault, ha ha.

So getting to hot to stay out here, I'll finish cleaning up the limbs later when it cools down. It looks like climate change for us up here, means "weather extremes", we just went through a darn cold winter, now the forecast for this summer is blistering hot.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Early PM Shop Notes Projects

So here is the third file I made up from those early (1905 - 1930) PM Shop Notes volumes. This file is not as large (41 pages) as the other two. Pickings were slim after pulling all the Romig plans for the other file. Never the less, some of these are more interesting than practical today, but thats an opinion,some may find many of them worth challenging, like the tool box below.

To complete this little collection, click Early PM Shop Notes Projects  to download. 11 MB - pdf

So as mentioned before their is enough content on this site now, that someone looking for projects to build, should have no trouble finding something of interest here.

There is a lot of work I need to do around the place and get my hands dirty on, and I want to fit in a few good road trips this summer, so I will be posting a lot less.

First on the list is dismantling my old Cavalier. It runs fine but the suspension and body have seen better days. I could repair and resell, but used Cavaliers, 15 years old, aren't worth much. I offered it to family for "FREE" but nobody bit. Ha ha. I guess I can use some parts for my sawmill build. The motor still runs great, not sure what I will use that for yet. Hows a 142 HP lawnmower sound? lol, lol not really.


Finger Joint Machine And Router Table

So here are a couple of nice plans from the 1987 Popular Science Supplement. The first is a finger joint cutting machine. There are many nice plans out there for finger joint cutting jigs. Most use the table saw to do the work with various blades, blade stacks, or dado stacks. Some are more complicated than they have to be and do not have much adjustment to compensate for things like, blades that run less than true.

If you have a bit of floor space and like to use finger joints for lots of joinery, this dedicated little machine might be for you. A 1/2 hp or larger motor, a ball bearing spindle available at most hardware stores, and a good quality 6" dado stack are the main parts needed. The rest can all be easily shop built. There is lots of adjustment, so once you have set up a snug fit, you can quickly start to produce stacks of finger jointed boards. As the author alludes to their are other applications this can be used for.

My feeling is that safety was a consideration in the design, the blade lives below the table, it is raised into the work with a simple foot pedal feed, and returns below the table, when the pedal is released. Additional guarding on the underside would insure nothing wanders near the blade from the underside.

The second project is a uncomplicated router table by R.J De Cristoforo. The table has nice built in storage and guards for the different functions, the top is solid looking. What more do you need? Some plans offer more in eye appeal but function no better for their intended purpose. A characteristic of R J's designs, I find, often omit unnecessary additions that don't contribute to tool function.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Plans By J. V. Romig

During the early 1920's Joe V. Romig was one of the most prolific authors of plans and articles for the home diy'er, His plans and articles were published in both Popular Mechanics and Popular Science.

This 69 page file covers the majority of his work. I left some of it out, like a 8" jointer, the 2 knife square head is considered unsafe today, and a table saw, with limited adjustment (Joe was not a woodworker). I also left out some industrial sized cranes and farm equipment that were to far off topic here.

A few of his plans incorporate concrete for mass, a method developed during the first world war to get around material shortages. Since then their has been a bit of a revival with a few sites using this method to build mass in machine tools and avoid cast iron.

So I hope some will enjoy this collection of plans. Many of them are still very practical for the small hobby shop.

To download this file click Plans By J. V. Romig 15 MB - pdf

Short Plans From Pre 1930 Shop Notes

So as promised here is a 71 page collection of short plans and ideas from the pre 1930 PM Shop Notes. The 26 previous Shop Notes volumes (1905 - 1930) are widely distributed around the web and at least one company, Algrove Publishing, has reprinted them.  For this reason I did only the post 1930 uploads in my previous posts. For those who have not accessed these volumes but have some interest in what might be in them, here is a collection of short (less than 1 page) but more outstanding plans and ideas in these volumes. There are 2 more files coming with larger projects including one devoted to J. V. Romig and his plans.

To download click Short Plans From Pre 1930 Shop Notes 13 MB - pdf

Friday, May 18, 2018

Rescanned Belt Sander And Internal Wood Threading

So here is a better scan of a light belt sander I posted before. I can't find the belt length stated anywhere but a rough calculation puts it at a 48" belt. If you can find a larger double shaft motor you can double up on the belts similar to my 32" belt unit in another post.

Here is an interesting little jig for threading the nuts of wood vise screws. Size doesn't matter, if you have the screw this jig will cut the nuts for it ( no innuendo here, what can I say, thats the terminology). Ha ha.

So it's been a long haul, lots of workshop plans and info.posted on this site now. Enough that a person looking for a project can do a search and probably find something close. I have invested a lot of time with these posts and for a break I am going to back off for the next 3 summer months. If I get any interesting travel or wildlife pics, I will make the effort to get them up. If you like some of the older PM Shop Notes, check back this weekend, I just completed  3 files that might garner some interest. I'll get them up tomorrow and Sunday.


A Superior Sawhorse

Everybody needs a couple of good sawhorses, if you do any kind of outdoor work. Here is a very useful design from Mother Earth News's "The Home Hardware Handbook". It is a very useful design for cutting dimension lumber with the portable circular saw. On a conventional sawhorse this is usually a dodgy operation with respect to safety and the accuracy of your cuts. This design addresses both of those concerns.

Of course no one ever builds just one sawhorse, you need two, one to support the long end of the board you are cutting, right. When thinking of this it crossed my mind that nowadays when I build something outside or for framing, I use 2 X 6's as much as I use 2 X 4's especially for exterior framing and anything requiring superior strength. To this end, the second sawhorse should be made 2" wider than the above design so both sizes can be cut with the same degree of safety and accuracy and still have the long outboard end supported.

The design below has had the width measurements adjusted to accept 2 X 6's for safe crosscutting. I was too lazy to make a new drawing, ha ha.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Sawmill Dreams

So I spent the afternoon cleaning up my trails, getting a start on my wood pile. As mentioned before, they weren't to bad, considering how bad that winter ice storm was, so pickings were slim.

A bad wind storm brought this one down, just off one of the trails. I have dreams of building a small band sawmill. This is a good candidate for some nice clear spruce boards, relatively straight and 16" diameter. I will have to cut it up into 8' lengths and bring it in, before the bugs get at it.

Right behind it, making it easier to eventually bring it out, is this fine example of a big birch. 22" diameter at the base, lots of fine birch boards in this one. Makes me want to start on that saw mill, ha ha.

An Inexpensive Panel Saw

So power is back on. I would like to think they replaced or repaired the piece of equipment that has caused some resent surprise outages, but more likely they were just reconnecting the cottagers for the season. The grid has been neglected for so long it's like an old car, when things start to break down, it's one thing after another.

So here is a plan for an inexpensive panel saw. Short of industrial equipment, its hard to find something easier to break down large panel material, than with a panel saw. Purchased units are quite expensive and many diy plans are built for heavy use. I have at least one for a future upload. This plan is inexpensive and relatively easy to build. For the home DIY'er who occasionally has need to break down sheet materials, this will simplify the process and save you lots of time.

This is another project from R.J. De Cristoforo published in the 1985 Popular Science DIY Yearbook.

R. J. is no spring chicken at this stage of life, but he makes it look easy to use the panel saw to break down full size panels.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

An Indicator, A Vise And A few Quickies

So back to the metalworking shop here is a plan for a nice clamp-on model maker's vise, a cleaned up and clearer scan of a test indicator for the lathe and around the shop. There is another method for cutting keyways in the lathe and a quick little jig for drilling round work.

Keyways are a characteristic common to most shaft, motor, and pulley assemblies in shop built machines of wood or metal construction. Just set screws can come loose and score shafts, keyways and set screws are a better way to go. Above is another idea for cutting keyways in the lathe. If you have a compound slide or have built one from the couple of plans I have posted, you can cut keyways using the above idea in the wood lathe as well. Don't try to hog it off in one pass, feed slowly taking a number of passes to reach the depth required.

If you use this method use a high power low speed drill, like the one below. I purchased this one shortly after "Mastercraft" came out with it. I liked it so much I bought a second one. Lots of power, it draws 7 amps, and the reversible variable speed runs 0-650 rpm. I work them as hard as my Makitas and so far they are holding up well.

Log Hauler

So does Hydro run software that monitors the web for when their name is referenced, or was it just a coincidence. An hour and a half after my post yesterday I get a automated call informing me the power would be out for a couple of hours on Thursday, for grid maintenance in my area. As the saying goes " you may be paranoid but that doesn't mean their not trying to get you" I forget what movie that is quoted from, ha ha, lol.

So here's a nice quick plan for a big log hauler. A great toy for the aspiring young big rig driver. Don't forget to glue those logs together, not safe to have those big logs rolling around loose.

Original plan from John Capotosto in 1983 this copy from Popular Science DIY Yearbook 1985.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

A Few Easy Metal Lathe Accessories

So here are a few easy lathe accessories for the novice, looking to inexpensively equip his small metal turning lathe and gain some experience at the same time.

Short Hydro Rant

So one topic that is making a lot of noise in the current Provincial election is the salary increases for the Hydro One board, chair and CEO. These people are already robing us, if the work they do for that salary is any measure (Oh I forgot most of these people were formerly in government and these cushy jobs are reward for the concessions they made while in government.). So now we are going to pay them even more so they could have 6 or 7 meetings per year to figure out how to pick our pockets even deeper.

Its just more of the same. They take our money to fill our monthly bills with power saving literature, so that when our consumption goes down, it's easier to jack up the delivery rates, on a grid that is easily shut down by the slightest weather change (fat upper level spending and wages is more important than good grid maintenance).

I think, they think most people are unenlightened, but they would be wrong. The majority of people can see that what we are doing is more like paying the highwayman ahead of time so he can rob us of whats left in our pockets a little further down the road. Internet providers are even worse, but at least they don't try to hide it, you know your getting ripped off up front. The few kill the limited competition and then tell you "there's no competition", lol. But we're Canadian so we will put up with it, I think thats called complacency.

A Tesla biography I read a while back retold a story where Tesla and Westinghouse, while building the generating works at Niagara Falls, observed the works also being built across the river, on the Canadian side. Westinghouse is said to have made the statement, "Now thats a perfect example of how not to set up a power company" pointing across the river.

After over 125 years, it seems nothing has changed.

Stands For All Your Tools

Here is an article that I think I uploaded somewhere before, they were poor scans. I found them again in the winter 1954 PM Shop Notes, so I can now control the quality of the upload. Yes you can now read the material lists, ha ha.

These are solid smart looking stands. There is collection of five here and with a few modifications they can be adapted to most machines in your shop. They are solid enough to support both your woodworking or metalworking machinery. The tops are shown as 1 3/4" thick but 1 1/2" thick would be solid enough for most applications and allow you to use regular dimension lumber. If you use splines, as shown in one top, it will make it easier for a more accurate assembly and your glue ups easier. I would say the splines make the tops stronger, but without actual test numbers, I will leave that to the opinion of any potential builder.