Milling & Turning

#1
I couldn't find anything anything resembling a 'Metalwork' thread, so here goes!
Being a lazy git I opted for woodwork in my third year at Grammar Tech, when you had to choose, as metalwork was harder and muckier.
Over the years, although I'm competent at jointing and generally making things out of wood, when required; I became more interested in things metallic, starting with cars and I learned to arc/mig weld and manufacture bits to get cars through the MoT. My tools were very basic and didn't get much more sophisticated than hammer, saw, drill and file.
When I retired I got a large tin shed and have been filling it with as much kit as I can get away with. This has included a good size mill and a lathe to replace an 80 year old Myford that was gifted to me, but on which I was spending more time fixing each time I wanted to use it than turning metal. It was more of a rotary file than a lathe.
A friend gave me a large box of various used and unused indexable lathe tool bits and I've made differently aligned tool holders to hold them.
One of my first projects has been to manufacture a new rear-sight unit for my 1970's BSA Airsporter Mk3, parts for which are now no longer available from the usual suppliers.
The original sights were made of what appears to be an iron casting (it's magnetic). The main body cracked at the locating pin and the windage/V-sight unit disintegrated in the '70s. A whinging letter to BSA got replacements...... which also failed at the same places within a few years. I have no excuse for the elevation disc - BSA painted it black and I cleaned it off with caustic soda. It was aluminium!
At the cost of a couple of quid (not including the man-hours!), I've succeeded in making a new set of parts. I had to make a near full set as BSA used Imperial threads and it was cheaper to make new metric, than buy Imp.

Is there anyone else on here with an interest in making swarf?

Old, busted bits on the left. They're not really brown, they're blued; but in the vein of "Is that Fanny Green?, it's just the light, but not coming through the stained glass window.
Airsporter Sight.JPG


The old bits, showing the breaks.



Airsporter Sight (old).JPG


New parts in situ.

Airsporter Sight On 2.jpg

Airsporter Sight On 3.jpg
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#2
Nice job, you should post this over in the shooting section, by the way John Knibb holds the largest BSA spares in the world and the factory records I believe!
 
#3
Nice job, you should post this over in the shooting section, by the way John Knibb holds the largest BSA spares in the world and the factory records I believe!
Thanks!
I thought about putting it in the shooting, but thought it would limit non shooters in posting their makings. I might tack just the sight bit onto the old Air Rifle thread.
I've used John Knibbs & Chambers in the past, but both have discontinued the Mk 3 sight years ago.
 
#4
Bloody impressive. I still want to learn how to lathe and mill, I ended up doing woodwork and art at school. I went off and did a city and guilds Mig/Tig welding to fix part of my desires however, when I went to register for the lathe course they had just cancelled it that year. The college must have had about 30 odd huge industrial type lathes for the apprentices at the local railway works to learn on - the railway works closed down, no more apprentices, no more need for that particular C&G. B'stards.
 
#5
I really regret not paying more attention at school and moreover, college, but I discovered beer and would have needed a 4 yr course of mornings rather than 2 yrs full day. I was surprised at how quickly what I had learned came back. It's a crying shame that so many tech colleges courses are shutting, my college shut some years back.
If you do decide to have a go, the same rule applies to lathes & mills as to tvs. Decide what is big enough..... then buy a bit bigger! I bought a small mill (Proxxon) first and it was waay too small and turned out to be a waste of money. Still, you learn.
I'm lucky in that a mate is one of those guys who happens to be about at the right time (he's not a Pikey!) and gets kit buckshee or very reasonably. So far he's got me a genny, grinder, toolpost, milling bits and holder, plus the lathe bits. He even offered me his late Dad's Colchester lathe, but it was a bit big for the shed and 200 miles away.
Gawd bless 'im.
 
#6
I started making swarf when I first took my A&P/ AME schooling and haven’t really stopped. Never got to the point where I could justify having a mill and lathe at home as I always have access to one, but other than that, I have a pretty well equipped shop.
 
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ugly

LE
Moderator
#7
My youngest works as a miller and turner for a component supplier, he smells of workshop when he comes home the bastard!
 
#8
My wife has a very sensitive nose and as soon as I enter the house I get "AARRGH! YOU STINK!"
Nice.
She might have a point when I blued the sight parts. On the bright side I found the 'sweet spot' for my new blow-torch.
It was only a small fire.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#9
He has promised to teach me for my retirement so we will be sneaking a lathe into the garage next year
 
#10
He has promised to teach me for my retirement so we will be sneaking a lathe into the garage next year
We have a move in the next year if the lad manages to finish all his subjects so he can graduate school a year early Then, bloody well THEN, I am going to get a lathe.

A good mate in Germany has built himself a CNC milling machine and he can cut most materials with it. He knocks out sniper targets for boxhead THEM and SWAT using it, nice little earner on the side for him.

Edit: Duh! That should be CNC router, not milling machine.
 
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#11
Once I retire, the Myford's getting a new chuck and money permitting a milling attachment. Already got the chemical bog sorted along with a kettle etc. And if you really want to stink, go black powder shooting for a few hours then clean your kit in a bucket of soapy water. I've been stood in the drive in me trolleys stuffing everything I've got on in a bin liner before I'm allowed in to straight up and have a shower. Cutting oil and hydrogen sulphide, the new fragrance for men.
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#12
I originally wanted a small hobby lathe for brass case work but now I suspect it will be a large floor standing machine!
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#13
My wife has a very sensitive nose and as soon as I enter the house I get "AARRGH! YOU STINK!"
Nice.
She might have a point when I blued the sight parts. On the bright side I found the 'sweet spot' for my new blow-torch.
It was only a small fire.
I've watched some interesting blackening and blueing techniques on the web, some by arrsers too!
 

rampant

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#15
Bloody impressive. I still want to learn how to lathe and mill, I ended up doing woodwork and art at school. I went off and did a city and guilds Mig/Tig welding to fix part of my desires however, when I went to register for the lathe course they had just cancelled it that year. The college must have had about 30 odd huge industrial type lathes for the apprentices at the local railway works to learn on - the railway works closed down, no more apprentices, no more need for that particular C&G. B'stards.
Bet they were all Colchesters too (sigh)
 
#16
I originally wanted a small hobby lathe for brass case work but now I suspect it will be a large floor standing machine!
Do the old shell casing lathes still come up on the market these days in the UK? With a lot of the 1940’s and 50’s generation departing, there have been quite a few popping up for private sale and at auction over here in the last few years.
 
#17
I've watched some interesting blackening and blueing techniques on the web, some by arrsers too!
Colour anodizing is quite simple too. I made the first rearsight on my Proxxon a couple of years back and then anodized it. It didn't take the colour, so it looks like the ally was dural! Colouring it with a Sharpie didn't really work. Hence the remake in mild steel.

The silencer cocking assist is an old Dyson tube anodized and coloured using Dylon.
scorpioncarbine.jpg
 
#18
I may ask one of you chaps for help! While I have the skills, I do not have the equipment (fnar fnar!!). Did a Higher in metalwork, also lots of swarf producing on Mech's course in the RN. I have a lovely old brass RN gun sighting telescope (huge thing) and a lovely set of old theodolite tripod legs. I'd like to marry the two up using some brass and or copper. Anyone interested?
 
#19
Colour anodizing is quite simple too. I made the first rearsight on my Proxxon a couple of years back and then anodized it. It didn't take the colour, so it looks like the ally was dural! Colouring it with a Sharpie didn't really work. Hence the remake in mild steel.

The silencer cocking assist is an old Dyson tube anodized and coloured using Dylon.
View attachment 399846
Frosts is a good source for finishing materials. Possibly a bit pricier on some stuff but, I used to look upon it as not having to spend half a day, driving 50 miles to 3 different places to get what I wanted.

Anodising & Dying Kits | Frost Restoration
 

ugly

LE
Moderator
#20
Do the old shell casing lathes still come up on the market these days in the UK? With a lot of the 1940’s and 50’s generation departing, there have been quite a few popping up for private sale and at auction over here in the last few years.
Not a shell case but a small lathe for neck turning converted cases which have been necked down! Consistency is the issue
 

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