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Member postings for ken king, King Design

Here is a list of all the postings ken king, King Design has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Not quite a lathe, but what is it?
14/05/2019 23:01:55

I have no idea, but I'm itching to find out. Come on, somebody !

Thread: Silvering brass
14/05/2019 22:58:16

In days of yore, when I was tank processing industrial photographs, our M.D., who restored clocks, would snaffle a little of the spent fixing solution, which he wiped over cleaned brass faces to deposit a layer of silver.

The remaining solution had steel wool immersed in it to collect the silver, the wool then being sent away for silver reclamation and refinement.

If you happen to know a professional photographer ...............

Thread: Stainless Steel Metric Fasteners
21/04/2019 10:31:12

Still one more option for you Graham, try and their 'fasteners' section. They offer Metric, Imperial, Cycle and other threads. Motorcyclists are well catered for as well as general engineering types,


Thread: What DRO to get?
18/04/2019 13:45:53

Going for the hat-trick here, three posts in a row. John Baguley seems to have negotiated the 'direct from China' route withiut mishap or nasty financial penalty, so that's very encouraging.

As an amusing aside, when Gary looked at my two suppliers he remarked that apart from the colour of some buttons the two DRO units looked very similar, and he woudln't be surprised if they were made in the same factory. When I was firing questions at them I started getting replies from both, in each case from a lady named Helen. I asked if Helen and Helen were one and the same , and she admitted she was. Soo ..... one factory, two button choices. more to come.

18/04/2019 13:36:13

Replying further to 'not done it yet', I apologise and concede that you are probably right. Given that the quill control is pretty good, and given that my plan to fit riser blocks to the head will allow much more use of the table rise/fall travel than at present, it does make sense to fit the scale to the latter. Coincidentally, Gary emailed me and said much the same thing, so there's two great minds thinking alike. Thank you both.

The notion of combining both Z-axis motions in one readout is an ideal still worth pursuing, and I haven't given up on it yet. Gary, can you recall where you heard about it ?

18/04/2019 11:55:58

Replying to 'not done it yet', my thinking isn't so much flawed, it's just that you and I go about things differently. Perhaps the type of milling we do is different also.

I do use the quill for milling, and its travel is 50mm. On my Centec the table elevation control is at the L.H. rear, and not very convenient, so I tend to use it only occasionally. Gary mentioned hearing of someone who was able to fit scales to both quill and table raise/lower, and have them combined as the Z-axis readout. I asked if this was possible but both suppliers apologised and said it wasn't. It's something to think about though.

17/04/2019 21:40:04

Aidan, I would like to fit a 3 axis DRO kit to my Centec mill, and have been looking at Chinese offers on eBay. I selected a couple, trading as 'industry.factory' and 'cncpart2018' and asked Gary Wooding to cast his expert eye over the specifications, which he very kindly did. At the end of the exercise Gary said he would be prepared to take a punt on either of them, which satisfied me. If it's good enough for Gary .... etc. Both of the systems use glass scales, and I selected movements of x-axis 250mm, y-axis 150mm, z-axis 50mm as the basis for quotations, which came in at £140 - £150, complete with swivelling arm support for the DRO unit. Shipping to me in Scotland via Fedex or similar would cost another £40 - £50. So far, so very good. A complication and added cost is VAT at 20% on combined price + shipping charge, so another £40, and the possibility of import duty, something I am still investigating. HM Customs tell me that if the unit price is £135 or less then as a private individual no duty would be payable. Maybe something could be done there by splitting the purchase; buying the z-axis later might do it. If you want a good example of red tape look at the regulations determining the duty payable on a pair of trousers, an example given on the Customs website, mindblowing.

My exercise is not yet complete, but one conclusion is that very respectable gear is available at relatively low cost, and though importing it adds expense it might still be an economic proposition.

If any readers have actually done this, and there must be some, I'm sure, it would be really good and very helpful to such as Aidan and myself to hear of their experiences. How about it ?

Thread: What Did You Do Today 2019
13/04/2019 00:47:49

Now for something Completely Different ! Lightweight and entertainment related, this is a replacement double drive wheel for a jukebox being restored by one of my clients. It's just over 2.5" diameter, so very small beer compared to the majority of subjects in this thread.


The original was moulded black rubber with a brass bush, and it was so perished and cracked that it was difficult to decide what the diameters should be. This was important though, if the turntable was to hit 45rpm. The client decided on the use of 'O'rings for drive tyres so I turned an aluminium replacement, suitably grooved, with a bonded-in brass bush.


He only sent me one of each size, but has since tested it and decided two are definitely necessary. After a couple of tweaks at his end he has achieved 45.2 rpm, which he reckons is good enough for rock 'n roll !

Thread: Simple WorkshopTips
06/04/2019 10:18:17

To hold up drawings which I need to refer to in the workshop, I've screwed worn-out hacksaw blades to the front edges of shelves, using the convenient end holes, then use a couple of fridge magnets or similar. Ladyshave items include magnetic labels which work well too. Trust me on this.

Thread: What Did You Do Today 2019
06/02/2019 21:53:11

Hi Speedy Builder5, yes of course, info as follows:- Material as stated is 2mm L.A. sheet, purchased on eBay so spec unknown. Torch was simple, common butane/propane screw-on cylinder type. I made a hearth using broken building block, acquired free from local merchant. The brazing (or soldering, there is some discussion on this point) rods are special alloy for this process and are available from Techno-weld, or from Christopher Drew trading as Deats Ltd. His material is called HTS2000. Instructions for the process are simple and succinct. I just followed them implicitly and it worked extremely well. Both sources on eBay. Hope this helps,


06/02/2019 14:57:25

Just posted off a brazed aluminium switchbox for a client who wants an additional NINE lightswitches mounted on the dash of his Landrover !! It was my first time using this brazing process, and I must say I was mightily pleased with the ease of use and the results. The box is 205mm long, 65mm on the switch face, and approx. 50mm deep. Material is 2mm L.A. sheet. As you can see, one bend is acute, and one slightly obtuse ...

land rover 2.jpg

The switch holes were punched with a home-made screw type punch and die set before folding ( the above photo is of a trial piece ). Endplates were cut to fit neatly inside, and were then brazed internally ...

land rover 4.jpg

and externally too. External beads were dressed down and showed good penetration ....

land rover 3.jpg

Here are a couple of views of the finished box, complete with sample switch, safety cover up ......

land rover 12.jpg

land rover 7.jpg

Result !! I'll certainly be using this brazing process again.

Thread: Best supplier of small BA hex nuts and bolts
26/09/2018 00:47:45

Thanks for your inputs chaps; I ordered on EKP's website, and the items arrive 2 working days later. Well pleased.

22/09/2018 21:14:44

For a current project I'm looking for a supplier with a range of steel BA nuts and bolts (specifically 8BA in this case) and preferably with one-size-smaller hex.

I'd be pleased if you will share your reccomendations,



Thread: Arbor Press Question
18/07/2018 19:47:37

I can't help wondering whether a foot operated toggle press might be able to exert the force needed. If properly adjusted, so that the toggle linkage is just reaching a straight line at the end of the stroke, then the mechanical advantage theoretically approaches infinity, the limiting factors being the strength of the linkage and press frame.

The advantage would be that the action of pressing, or transferring ones' weight onto a foot pedal allows hands free operation for alignment and so on, and the weight of the device would be considerably less than a flypress which might be overkill in terms of force deliverable. Any comments ?

Thread: Turnstile ratchet repair
11/07/2018 14:18:07

Hello Michael, yes, definitely one of those ! Sorry to be facetious, but I am unsure, though tending toward casting. It will be intersting to see how M.S. stands up to the job, otherwise guage plate or similar might be needed, with heat treatment. At that point I might decline, reluctantly of course,



11/07/2018 11:24:42

We've all, at some time, attempted to push through a turnstile which wasn't ready to allow passage, resulting in stress to both parties. At my son's local swimming pool the pawl had had enough, and shed its tip. The pivot bolt was badly bent and worn, so replacements were requested.

old pawl:bolt.jpg

The tip had been roughly reattached to give the shape required, whilst it had been necessary to tack a hex onto the chewed-up slotted bolt head to enable its removal. The hex seemed a good idea, and so was incorporated into the pawl design. The outline was traced onto !" thick plate, marked all round with centre punch dots, then a series if holes were drilled to facilitate cutting out the rough blank (this being my only means of doing so)

pawl 1.jpg

Thicness was reduced by 0.2" on the mill, then the pivot hole and 1" c'sink were added

pawl 2.jpg.

After completing the profiling process (quicker to say than do !) a new bolt was made, from three pieces to reduce machining. Contrasting new pawl and bolt shown below. Clickety-click !

new pawl:bolt.jpg

Thread: What's the best alternative to 'loctited'
04/06/2018 14:49:31

May I suggest we don't use terms which incorporate all, or a major part of, a proprietary product name , because to do so implies its use. Just say 'bonded' and specify what you used by name afterwards, if it worked well, e.g. shaft and wheel were bonded (xyz 123). It will be helpful to others, but many will choose to use their own favourites anyway.

23/05/2018 17:15:16

Bonded covers it, and I suggest the adhesive is identified in folowing parentheses, as in 'leg A and bush B were bonded (Loctite 234). Short and simple, bit like me,(before anyone else says it !),


Thread: 'Schools' regulator
29/01/2018 16:32:29

A client who is building a 'Schools' class locomotive asked me to make the regulator for it, using a proprietery casting he had purchased. The first step was to face the casting in the lathe, then drill passages and two valve ports, followed by tapping various points on the body. The valve disc and operating links were cut and filed from 1/8" brass sheet ..


The linkage is connected via 7BA phosphor-bronze screws, and is actuated from the cab via a squared-off 1/8" diameter 316 stainless rod ..



Mating faces of the casting and valve disc were polished to ensure steam-proof closure ...


and were lubricated with a light smear of silicon grease before final assembly. Prior to that though, the mounting projection on the valve body had to be filed to match the 4 3/16" I.D. of the boiler shell, and the casting trimmed to clear the rim of the steam dome aperture. The final step was to fit a spring and nut to the valve spindle. The spring is currently stainless steel, though a beryllium copper replacement will be used once one is located ....


Thread: Honing gunmetal cylinders
25/01/2018 23:23:53

I didn't think the objective of honing was to remove high spots, that's essentially re-machining. I understood the honing process was to change the nature of the surface finish, usually (as in car cylinders) to help retain an oil film. In that case, the mop charged with a suitable compound will do the job.

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