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Member postings for Siddley

Here is a list of all the postings Siddley has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Unimat 3 underpowered ?
13/10/2013 01:10:22

I only have the Unimat because I won it for 50EU in an auction....
I think I'll probably sell it on...

10/10/2013 15:19:01

It's a Unimat 3. The belts are new old stock, I fitted them myself. I know there isn't any slip because the motor was stalling. I'm pretty sure if I'd been brutal enough I could have stalled it completely.

The drills however...hmmm...I didn't have much space to work in due to the shape of the casting I was drilling so I used a short series drill. Specifically one of a bunch of expensive CNC spotting drills I bought cheap from a workshop clearance several years ago. It's the first time I've used a drill from this batch. I'd better check them.

Thanks for the help so far...

10/10/2013 13:02:53

I have just set up my Unimat 3 and I'm using it to do a few little jobs until I get the larger machines installed. Or at least I was...

I wasn't expecting it to have a great deal of power ( I had a Peatol once, so I thought I knew what to expect ) but when set up in a drilling configuration it was struggling to drill a 5mm hole in 3mm aluminium. My cheapo cordless drill has more torque. The drill bit I used was brand new and therefore sharp.

Are they all like that ? or could I have a motor fault ? - it's not noisy or rough running, it's just gutless.

Thread: Emco Unimat 3 price check ?
13/08/2013 03:57:10

A house isn't a home unless it's got a partially dismantled British motorbike in the living room....

10/08/2013 23:27:41

I'm really starting to like these auctions Pete, went to one today and amongst all the usual rubbish like wonky garden chairs and VHS players was a boxed Chesterman 14" height gauge and a beautifully made 5" sine bar.
12 Euros for both....

And best of all the missis has now agreed that I can use the downstairs spare bedroom as a workshop...

04/08/2013 17:36:10

Well, thereby hangs a tale Norman - I was only at the auction because they had a 6 x 4 shed listed.
Being in Spain I assumed that was 6 by 4 metres, but it turned out to be 6 by 4 feet....
I do need a reasonable sized workshop as I have those four large toolboxes, a mill, an Emco Compact 5 lathe and a large pillar drill to accomodate.

04/08/2013 13:12:51

My machine tools can swear like a drunken sailors parrot Neil

I'd be pushing my luck if I used it in the house Jason, I already have four large toolboxes containing my mechanics hand tools in the living room and although my missis is a great girl, she has a limit to her patience

Next job is to find the memory card for the digital camera and unpack the lathe properly. It's 45C here today though ( inland Spain ) and I'm feeling a bit lazy....

04/08/2013 09:50:52

Thanks a lot for the input guys. I would love to keep the Unimat for small jobs, but I have moved to a house where there aren't any outbuildings suitable for a workshop and need to raise funds to build one.

My Unimat is also in a wooden case, but it looks home built rather than a factory item ( really well made though )

There are several Unimat 3 specific books that came with the deal as well. One is authored by a chap called Gerald Wingrove who I believe is the same person who models classic cars to an incredible standard.

I'm going to have to ponder on what to do... which probably means trying to come up with a justification for keeping it rather than selling it on

Later I'll investigate the contents of the box more thoroughly and take some pictures, just for interest.
Being an auction buy I have no idea what the story behind the lathe is, I really hope the reason for it's sale was that the owner has traded up to something larger, rather than it being a result of bereavement or no longer being able to carry on with their hobby. I'm not really a sentimental person, but I often wonder about the history of any old and well cared for machine or hand tools I buy....if only they could talk

04/08/2013 00:13:20

I just bought an Emco Unimat 3 at an auction. In outstanding condition. It seems to have pretty much every accessory that was available for those lathes, many of them sealed in the origional packaging and unused. This includes the milling head etc.

What is it worth ? ( and don't say I'll give you tuppence for it )

Thread: spiders
13/01/2013 01:51:17

I've got an interest in astronomy and have books on amateur telescope building dating back 50 years ( that's the books, not me )

One of the tips for making a 'graticule' for a telescope eyepiece, used to measure the angular seperation of things like binary stars and cloud belts on Jupiter, involves keeping a colony of spiders and using strands from their webs as the material to make the crosshairs. It's very strong for it's diameter apparently.

I'll just keep terminating them with extreme prejudice though, nasty horrible things :D

09/01/2013 00:07:16

I have to say that spiders don't exactly thrill me too much. We don't have any deadly ones here ( Spain ) but there are some small ones with a nasty bite and some large ones which can scare you to death.

The centipedes are horrible. Megarian Banded Centipede - check it out via the search engine of your choice and prepare to shudder...

We have Geckos and other lizards living around the property. We regard them as being friendly pest control experts and try to make their lives as easy as possible. There are snakes too, but under the new EU ( Control Of Dangerous Snake Weapons Act ) they aren't allowed to bite you anymore - just pull funny faces and hiss.

In our Olive grove there are sometimes wild boar rooting around , but they don't sneak into the workshop ( makes a change from the junkies in the UK ). I'll probably shoot one at some point ( a boar not a UK junkie ) because they make good eating. Or maybe I'll train it to use a file and a hacksaw instead ?

We have Iberian Lynx in our area, but haven't seen one yet. They are going to be the subject of my next hunting trip ( done with a camera, not a rifle )

PS - My workshop in the UK was full of wolf spiders at one time. A good friend of mine came to help me clear it out prior to installing some new machines and as soon as we got underway the spiders were crawling out from everywhere. Now bear in mind that I'm a biker with a lot of tattoos and more than a few scars, I'm like an extra from that silly TV show 'Sons Of Anarchy' - my mate helping me is a really tough kickboxer and one of the hardest people I know. But he hates spiders too
Imagine this pair of " bad-asses " scared out of their wits, almost hugging each other and begging my wife to come to down the path and sort the spiders out for us


Edited By Siddley on 09/01/2013 00:24:02

Thread: Speed Dreams
06/01/2013 23:57:13

That's right up my street but I can't get the BBC iPlayer in Spain, I'll have a search on YouTube.

Thread: Black hole
05/01/2013 22:45:23

The WW-2 perspective on them follows. It looks like the tribe became more numerous and jobs annoying RAF pilots became scarce, so they started picking on us as well...
( PRU = Photographic Recconaissance Unit = Very Dangerous Job )

This is the tale of the Gremlins
As told by the PRU
At Benson and Wick and St Eval-
And believe me, you slobs, it's true.

When you're seven miles up in the heavens,
(That's a hell of a lonely spot)
And it's fifty degrees below zero,
Which isn't exactly hot.

When you're frozen blue like your Spitfire,
And your scared a Mosquito pink.
When you're thousands of miles from nowhere,
And there's nothing below but the drink.

It's then that you'll see the Gremlins,
Green and gamboge and gold,
Male and female and neuter,
Gremlins both young and old.

It's no good trying to dodge them,
The lessons you learnt on the Link
Won't help you evade a Gremlin,
Though you boost and you dive and you jink.

White ones will wiggle your wing tips,
Male ones will muddle your maps,
Green ones will guzzle your glycol,
Females will flutter your flaps.

Pink ones will perch on your perspex,
And dance pirouettes on your prop,
There's a spherical middle-aged Gremlin,
Who'll spin on your stick like a top.

They'll freeze up your camera shutters,
They'll bite through your aileron wires,
They'll bend and they'll break and they'll batter,
They'll insert toasting forks into your tyres.

And that is the tale of the Gremlins,
As told by the PRU,
(P)retty (R)uddy (U)nlikely to many,
But a fact, none the less, to the few.

Thread: Medium carbon steels
05/01/2013 16:12:46

Bazyle - it is a bit ironic, living in a country that has a knife and swordmaking tradition, but not being able to get the steel easily. Spanish companies don't make much use of the internet so it's almost a word of mouth job. That can be very frustrating. Good call on the Santana leaf springs - the problem there is finding a scrapyard - they don't seem to exist. I can get leaf springs sent out from the UK though. I have a 21" Sirupati ( longer version of the Khukri ) which was made by a top Kami ( bladesmith ) in Nepal from a Mercedes truck leafspring and it is superb. I used it for agricultural tasks for years ( actually what the Sirupati is designed for, it's not primarily a weapon ) and it holds a fantastic edge.

Peter - Rebar isn't really suitable for monosteel knife making, it's too variable in composition. I know people who have tried and got pretty poor results

Michael - Gauge plate is a great knife steel but it isn't suitable for differential hardening. All the things that make it so good for industry and home workshop use actually work against you if are trying to get aesthetics of a Japanese style blade.

It looks like I have found a good source of steel in the UK thanks to a forum member though, good as in probably perfect
Now I just need to get rid of the cold my missis kindly brought back from the UK, which has laid me up for two days..

Edited By Siddley on 05/01/2013 16:13:52

Thread: Black hole
03/01/2013 18:56:47

It's gremlins Bill - they used to live in the cockpits of WW-2 aircraft but the little swines have multiplied and now infest workshops as well. They steal anything dropped on the floor and mine have learned how to move the dials on the machines handwheels when I'm not looking and replace my expert marking out with centre pops in the wrong places.

Edited By Siddley on 03/01/2013 18:57:31

Thread: Medium carbon steels
03/01/2013 10:59:38

Hi Russell - I did say 'semi traditional'

I mostly use the differential heat treatment method after forging to create a 'hamon' - although sometimes I use the 'San Mai' construction method of a core steel wrapped in low carbon steel and forge welded.

The fully traditional method is to use bloom steel which has very poor quality control by it's very nature - it has to be folded to distribute the carbon content more or less evenly.

Your 15C sword is probably a very valuable piece, you may be surprised at what it is worth when authenticated.

03/01/2013 10:18:10

I forge knives in a semi-traditional Japanese style and I really struggle to get the medium carbon steel which is needed for this kind of work. Currently I'm importing it from the US, but the shipping, custom duty and IVA ( Spanish version of VAT ) is a real nuisance.
Does anyone know of a UK supplier of medium carbon steel in small quantities ? I'm looking for .60 to .80 carbon
I have tried a few so called 'specialists' in the UK who claim to cater for small orders, but they can't supply anything less than a 6 foot square piece of the stuff for about £300

Thread: Combined Mill/Lathe
03/01/2013 07:31:22

Honestly, a lathe makes a very poor mill. But I promise not to argue the point from now on,,,

03/01/2013 03:10:10

hope no one is referring to this combo as a "load of garbage"

Round column ? no thanks. Been there, done that, pain in the fundament.

A lathe is a lathe and a mill is a mill, ne'er the twain shall meet unless you want to be very disappointed.

But what the f--- do I know, I've only been making my living from machine tools for the last 15 years

Thread: Gasket Material for an Air Compressor
03/01/2013 00:04:58

I sometimes used to cut gaskets from copper sheet for my British bikes and that worked OK if you annealed the copper afterwards.

If it's OK for a pre-unit Triumph Bonny engine with 10.5-1 pistons it'll probably be OK in an air compressor

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