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Member postings for richardandtracy

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

Thread: Are we Luddites?
30/05/2018 16:34:16

Mick,

I grew up in N Devon. I am a professional mechanical engineer, current industry - boxes (fancy metal ones). I have spent a few years as a stress engineer on aircraft interiors. No jobs in N Devon, so I moved to Kent where there were jobs. I literally got on my (motor)bike and went after a job. Did it in 1987. Pension prospect is negligible as it's a contribution one, not salary linked. When I joined the company there was a final salary scheme, but that went down the tube in 1990.

Regards,

Richard.

30/05/2018 15:46:05

People have been moving to where the work is.

That is why so many EU nationals have moved to the UK. The work is here, in spades (and pipes, and plumbing and fruit picking and farming and.. millions of jobs). The Poles, Hungarians, Slovaks, Bulgarians & Romanians I have met work at an effort level and rate that puts the UK born to shame. They do the jobs that many of our own unemployed will not do, and do not do. As I sit here typing I am facing a social housing estate where there is 90% unemployment and 90% UK birth. In the town there is 4% unemployment, but there has been about 15% immigration from Europe in the last 10 years, and virtually none of the immigrants are unemployed. The unemployed seem - from the 90 household sink estate in front of me - to be unwilling to get up to take their kids to school, unwilling to get dressed, and unwilling to do anything other than procreate. They may have problems, medical or otherwise, but little of it is evident from the outside. After commuting on foot through the estate for 5 years, I can identify 50% of the adults and a majority could work if they could be bothered to get up, wash, dress, take some exercise and behave like a human being with some pretensions to civilisation.

The issues in mining communities are different, but 30 years is quite a time for someone with get-up-and-go to get-up-and-be-gone.

Regards,

Richard.

30/05/2018 13:48:19
Posted by martin perman on 30/05/2018 12:40:35:

My thoughts are that CNC is a very useful production machine that can spit out parts by the thousand, in production facilities they are operated by button pushers and serviced by tool setters, the computer programmer designs the component and feeds the programme to the machine, ....

There are those - like me - who do not have the manual skills to be able to do the sorts of things they want to do on a lathe. I want to make - amongst other things - pens with graceful curves, ones with multi faceted engraving on the outside, multi start threads etc etc. These are things that are possible, but fiendishly difficult with a conventional non cnc setup. That's why I want to do cnc and why I feel it has a place in my workshop. It will be used for one-offs as well as several-offs. If I can write the correct software tools, it will take me much less time, many fewer errors and a lot more accurately than if I were to do it without cnc, even for one-off's. Cnc will help me work around my limitations to create what I want while using to the skills I have, rather than wasting time because of the skills I don't have.

Regards,

Richard

30/05/2018 12:19:13

I have read an 1835 revision of an 1802 updating of a 1796 revision of a 1721 translation of Leonardo's treatise on painting. What can I say? He was a didactic dilettante. If he was an artist, his work leaves little room for artistry, the book imagines he covers everything worth knowing about painting in 365 chapters (modern definition would call them paragraphs). To give a flavour of Leonardo's actual words (in translation) this is the whole of Chapter 5:

'Chap V, Division of the Figure: The form of bodies is divided into two parts; that is, the proportion of the members to each other, which must correspond with the whole; and the motion, expressive of what passes in the mind of the living figure.'

Vague, unhelpful & didactic. When you look at what he touched and compare it with what he achieved, you can see he actually fiddled with a huge amount of stuff, came up with interesting ideas and showed very little effort in the follow through. Could think of him as an ideas fountain; Someone who comes up with lots of ideas but has no idea of the value of them, whether good or bad. In the way he circled the rich and famous of the day, and the way he addressed letters and notes to them, it is hard to avoid the term 'sycophancy'. I know he came from a different time with different ideas, but he strikes me as someone who has been seriously over-praised.

Regards,

Richard.

Thread: The Workshop Progress thread 2018
29/05/2018 16:43:46

What, preparing early for this year's candlestick challenge?

Regards,

Richard

Thread: Running coal fired 5 steam engine on gas
29/05/2018 15:14:17
Posted by JasonB on 29/05/2018 10:24:31:
Posted by richardandtracy on 29/05/2018 10:20:02:

Does beg the question, is it a functional test of the engine or is it a functional test of the boiler's ability to generate steam?

Answered above "I would put it under the firebox to get some steam in the boiler for a steam test"

Not everyone uses the same version of English & may be using the words differently. It does no harm to check understandings are the same, particularly on a board where there are international contributors.

Regards,

Richard.

Thread: What did you do Today 2018
29/05/2018 10:40:54

If an image is being viewed using old software (eg the forum), then old software needs to be used to strip out the spurious orientation information ignored by the old software... I always use a copy of Paintshop Pro I got on the front of the PCPlus magazine in the year 2000 or so. It's good enough to do what I need, works on 64bit windows and is simple enough to be compatible with older software.

Regards,

Richard.

Thread: Running coal fired 5 steam engine on gas
29/05/2018 10:20:02

Does beg the question, is it a functional test of the engine or is it a functional test of the boiler's ability to generate steam?

If of the engine only, then you could use air to pressurise the boiler.

Using gas to heat the boiler, from the heat intensity and corrosive products of combustion point of view, it should be less bad than coal firing the boiler.

Regards,

Richard.

Thread: What did you do Today 2018
28/05/2018 17:27:39

Soft aluminium jaws for my vice. I can now - finally - get rid if the irritating angle extrusions I put over the hardened diamond pattern jaws the vice came with. Why don't they supply vices with aluminium jaws to begin with? It's been on my 'to do' list for a good 15 years, but I only just got some 10mm plate from a skip.

Regards

Richard.

Thread: Warco 2 point traveling steady - which model??
27/05/2018 21:20:10

As the Warco is the combi machine, it'll also fit a Clarke CL500, CL430, Sealey SM27 etc.. But not the Chester Model B where the centre height is bigger.

Regards

Richard.

27/05/2018 17:59:36

Top one, Min 138, Max 160 ish.

Hope that fits.

Regards

Richard.

Thread: What did you do Today 2018
27/05/2018 16:19:29

Made a tiny mitre block for my wife's precious metal clay jewellery making. The block was from a scrap 20x20 mm plastic pen blank offcut, milled a slot down the middle 12mm x12mm, then junior hacksaw to cut slots at 0,+45 and -45 degrees. Total length 30mm.

Regards

Richard.

Thread: Warco 2 point traveling steady - which model??
27/05/2018 13:36:38

Looks like the one on my WMT 300. Was used on the WMT300/1 and /2. Has a 6" centre height, but as the cross slide was used for milling, it's a bit thicker than normal.

Regards

Richard

Edited By richardandtracy on 27/05/2018 13:40:56

Thread: 1/2" roughing end mill
27/05/2018 10:40:16

Won't help for this job, but all carbide mills can be bought for £10 on the bay from a UK source. Is it worth getting a new one instead of a poor re-ground one? Could well be cheaper in terms of frustration...

Regards

Richard.

Thread: Alba 1A Shaper.
27/05/2018 08:55:22

I have an 8 inch Boxford, but never managed to get around to changing the drive belt. It's a bit(!) ossified and has an attractive shiny surface. As a result it struggles at any speed other than dead slow. I have taken cuts of 2mm x 7 thou feed (sorry for the mixed units, I set the doc with my metric DTI, and the feed with the imperial settings). Anyway it works superbly. The only problem is it's so slow and so fascinating to watch I never do anything other than watch it. I'm convinced Heath Robinson got involved with its design - there seems so much spurious and unrelated motion.

Regards

Richard.

Thread: Morse taper spec.
26/05/2018 12:09:02

It would only need one setup on the machine for different tapers, though. Many machines have different tapers at the head and tailstock, and need to make bits for both. It would make it easier to use the same setup.

Regards,

Richard.

Thread: Are we Luddites?
25/05/2018 20:57:53

Bill P, was it a loss to the skill set to learn how to mill a cube rather than file it? I'd contend the answer is no, filing a cube is one of the most stupid requirements that an apprentice is set. There are vastly better ways of doing it, so don't waste anybody's time - instructor's or student's - on such a futile task.

Is is a loss to hand skills that an apprentice no longer makes a bronze axe head? Nope, outdated skills need to be replaced with relavent ones in context.

The same will come with CNC. As every technology appears its horizons become wider and more things can be done, not less. It's creativity that's the important skill, not whether you can handle a file.

Regards

Richard.

Thread: Clean hands?
25/05/2018 20:48:35

I used to use the Halfords version with beads. Now I use cheap washing up liquid which works almost as well for a lot less cost.

Regards

Richard

Thread: Morse taper spec.
25/05/2018 20:45:36

If there was any deep thought about it - which looking at the numbers I too doubt - I reckon it's lost in the mists of time.

The tan of the angle is close to the coefficient of friction for steel on steel. It's possible different sizes were made and tested on different days, with different levels of oil contamination on the different days, so the test house determining the angles found fractionally different ones each time. That sort of design by testing went on at the company I work for when I joined it 30 years ago, and led to similarly bizzare results. All changed now, I may add.

Regards

Richard.

Thread: Are we Luddites?
25/05/2018 20:24:40

Luddites?

Yes, and no. Sounds like an equivocal answer, I know, but I don't think it's an easily answered question.

On the yes side: We are old fashioned enough to want to know how things work, feel that simple, passive consumerism is not enough. And critically, we want to do something about it. That is where the luddism comes in. The modern world is structured so that if the current toy is unsatisfying, you are supposed to buy the new, improved model from Amazon as that will fulfil all your wants. How dare anyone feel that they know better and make it themselves?

On the no side: Let me ask you a question. Do you have a vfd, a dro, or a digital caliper anywhere in your shop? Now tell me that they are not high tech items with a straight face. I won't believe you, however straight the face. Do you have insert tools, or are thinking about them? Just how new are they? I'd doubt if they're as old an idea as a PC. And.. Well, look at this forum. It exists. Is the www the medium of the current revolution? Yes, and look, we're part of it right here, right now. So no, we're not luddites, just selective adopters, same as a 17yo. The difference being the 17yo tends to adopt new tech from a position of abject passivity and conformity.

Just my 2p's worth.

Regards

Richard.

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