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Member postings for Stuart Munro 1

Here is a list of all the postings Stuart Munro 1 has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Bureaucracy with a tinge of Madness
28/06/2021 12:56:55

I too use the gateway, and always have received excellent service from HMRC. Ran a business that dipped up into VAT for a few years and have always done full returns. Their online computerised software is great.

But can see why some have problems

28/06/2021 08:10:56


Of course its my fault. I never practiced as an accountant but used my accounting skills to spot problems in companies...boring stuff so I just accept its my fault. For the last 15 years until my retirement I actually lectured finance to bankers and such so I usually say I was a teacher.

But on a serious note, your problems in having to fill out a full return are all because many of us feel comfortable in 'hiding' income from HMRC. Its simple to pay the guy coming to clean the carpets in cash, the window cleaner etc. This aids them in avoiding Income tax and VAT. The biggest tax fraud of all is VAT avoided through cash payments.

So the intention of HMRC is to catch all those miscreants which means that us honest folks have to comply with more paperwork, oh and by the way pay more tax to cover the tax avoided by others.

Sounds like I'm defending HMRC, I'm not because it is very irritating when they can not see the logic from a layman's viewpoint. We need to explain in their language. Like expecting a non engineer to talk about a morse taper instead of saying the cone shaped piece I stick into the hole.

Thread: Cold blue for Aluminium?
27/06/2021 18:02:28


I machine aluminium for the insides of radio controlled boats and the aly needs to be well protected.

I paint the components. First, any assembly is done with JB Weld epoxy then I rub down the whole component with 240 grit paper. Spray with an etching primer (Source from Halfords - dry in 20 mins) then finish spray (again rattle can from Halfords).

Thread: Bureaucracy with a tinge of Madness
27/06/2021 17:52:48

Now if you have digested my epistle on the lack of depth of understanding displayed by many people, about their occupation!. Let me introduce you to the changes coming at HMRC ostensibly to reduce your (our) errors. Note that HMRC do not suggest the following is designed to reduce their errors!

We are moving towards all financial transactions that result in taxable income being directly reported to HMRC and tax computed by them We need never worry again. We need never contact HMRC because they will be right without our intervention.

Don't get me wrong, I believe in paying my due. Not just legally due but also morally so. However I like to retain control. But the real reason for this change is to reduce tax avoidance. I wholeheartedly agree with the concept, not the implementation.

Tell the post office sub postmasters that the computer was always right!

27/06/2021 17:41:58

You could imagine that there is a linkage to the thoughts here - I guess there should be but not perhaps the one I'm alluding to.

Frances and Dave allude to the need for us to understand the principles behind Javascript and HTML, not the detail but the basics. Like the car analogy, I know the principles of how the internal combustion engine works and understand that a microchip (or many of them!) control the variables for me. I don't need to be able to program these myself.

The other theme, expressed clearly by Howard is that we can not expect logical responses from HMRC. I see this as the same thing (now remember that I've confessed to being an accountant so clearly am not fully sane myself). I suggest that when we telephone or contact a person at HMRC, they do not always grasp the principles of tax. Wow, can I be serious? Yes. The 'front line' are unlikely to be qualified. They may never intend being so, its a 9 to 5 job. Ask something standard you get a standard response, ask the extraordinary and you still get the standard response.

I can prove this: Try sending a letter of complaint to any organisation and list more than one issue, if you are lucky the first one gets answered, the second is not even read. So a complex situation elicits a standard reply. HMRC is no different.

Elevate it to someone with experience and logic starts to come through, but its hard to get that elevation.

So my common theme is that we all have so much complexity in out lives that we don't have the tim eor inclination to understand anything deeper than the basic principles. Unless its a passion as engineering seems to be to people on this site!

26/06/2021 17:42:22

My bank and a credit card company now use voice recognition for any telephone help, Paypal and HMRC use two stage verification - unless the device is 'known' in Paypal's case.

This does alas make the initial verification more rigorous - aka painful. But I share the common observation the mention of needing a NI driving licence smells a lot like a con. Perhaps my smell is off due to covid.

Turning the the NHS - there is no one who can question the value they have given during the pandemic but it is simplistic to believe that all NHS workers add value, I find that there are many 'jobsworths' in non clinical roles. Some are outstanding, others are awful. when there are 1000's of people in a particular role, we will always get a range of ability and usefulness.

Which brings me neatly to the defence of accountants - as an ex accountant I feel that I should but to be honest, who cares! My friends tell me that in retirement I'm trying at last to add real value, but toying at engineering!


Thread: Parting off help!
26/06/2021 17:05:43


I'm also a relative newby and have just benefitted from a discussion on this site, about holding the work for cutting off (see to ER is human - about ER collets).

The gist of this is that holding the workpiece firmly and as close to the collet/chuck as possible is critical to parting. Like you, I got all sorts of unnerving noises and even had pieces coming free of the chuck. I'm now sourcing a small set of ER collets which I hope will alleviate the problem.

You might think that acetal or machining nylon would be easier; I machine quite a lot of these plastics and find heat generation a major problem with parting off, because they need much less heat to melt than any metal. I find that with these materials taking a 'firm' cut at a slower rotational speed helps, combined with withdrawing the tool 2/3 times to clear the debris and allow some cooling.


Thread: To ER is human but ER collets could be divine
20/06/2021 15:12:20


Thanks for the info on Peatol Machine Tools - I saw this yesterday but of course there was no one around to ask about supply and price. A US modellers site claims this to be very accurate on a Sherline!

This adaptor looks to be the solution; The idea of registering a chuck to a backplate looks interesting but I'm unsure about my skill level and right now, the time it would probably take me.

As to importing - I sometimes buy Sherline components direct from the US - found a site that will list them on eBay and ship through eBays' international shipping. You still pay the UK taxes - import duties and VAT - but not any US ones. Shipping comes out reasonable (not cheap but acceptable).

20/06/2021 13:24:31

ps - So if I got my hands on a Taig ER16 collet holder - which threads onto a 3/4 16 Sherline thread - I would not even need to register it.

But as you point out - Registering would be good practice....


20/06/2021 13:20:46


That all makes sense - you should re-write the article for MEW. The original is good but assumes more than a basic knowledge such as mine!


20/06/2021 11:58:00

Ah - found a MEW article from 2008 where it has become obvious that the chuck must sit on the backplate perfectly perpendicular to the axis and of course, the fixing holes need to be precisely positioned. But is the 3 fixing holes are already made then a 'facing' operation carried out on the lathe should leave the backplate face perpendicular to its axis.

The article talks about the middle of the backplate being recessed so that the chuck sits only on a circle where the fixing bolts are. Or am I reading this wrongly?


20/06/2021 11:42:57


As a life long office worker I'm still quite new to this engineering stuff so please excuse me asking something that is probably blindingly obvious.

The ARC Euro Taig Backplate comes in 3 varieties; blanc, 4 point fix and 2X3 point fix (making 6 holes in a circle).

The ER 16 Lathe Chuck Collet has a 43mm register diameter, 5mm register depth, and a 'PCD' of 51.5mm.

The 2X3 point fixing Taig Backplate has a 44mm register diameter but looks to have compatible fixing hole positions and sizes. (PCD of 51.5mm, 5.5mm clearance holes leading to 0.8mm depth on M5 thread)

So presumably the 'registering' is facing the backplate so that it is smooth. If that's the operation you refer to then it should be no problem but the ARC Euro site and your observation make me think there is more to this that I think.

Is that so?


20/06/2021 07:41:55

Thanks guys - I can now see that the ARC Euro combination of Taig backplate and ER16 collet chuck are designed to fit each other. And s DC31K says, the Taig uses the same thread as Shirline - my problem solved at around £35.

Plus a selection of ER Collets!


19/06/2021 12:11:13


Thanks - the ARC Euro ER 16 chuck looks interesting. I already have n unused backplate that came with my lathe so its just a case of machining it to accept the ER chuck. Great idea and even cheaper than the RDG set.

I confess to being a bit unsure about 'cheap' sets anyway. Not sure of the quality although other things bought from RDG have been fine.


19/06/2021 11:32:15

So my only real drawback is not being able to pass stock through, Thanks Vic. Looks like £60 well spent even it I cant use the collets in every situation.


19/06/2021 11:17:16

Sorry, not clear - the RGD set includes a MT1 taper, drawbar and ER 'nut' plus the 10 ER collets - all for about £60!

19/06/2021 11:15:33

Thanks to much help on a previous topic, I've decided to investigate purchasing a set of ER collets for my Sherline lathe.

Sherline make a specific spindle to take ER 16 collets but to us this I would have to strip out the MT1 spindle and replace or adjust all of my other fittings.

RGD tools are offering a competitive (cheap!) set of 10 ER 16 collets with an MT1 taper. Am I right to assume that I could simply fir the collets to my Sherline (MT1 spindle). Seems too simple a solution.


Thread: Securing workpiece for parting in lathe or 'left feed'
16/06/2021 17:45:08


Yes, I use a HSS blade and regrind it regularly.

Corian - heh, I'll give it a try but my wife might spot the hole in the kitchen worktop!

16/06/2021 16:19:55

Following on from John's question above, from my answer you can see that I am not into heavy engineering; no steam engines. Mostly small components for radio controlled yachts/power boats which are made from Brass or Aluminium.

I've taken to using delrin rod for pulleys of late. I had managed to reduce the parting off problems with Brass but are finding them more acute with delrin (or sometimes nylon). I expect this is because these plastics, however rigid and machinable they are, are more slippery than brass.

I also make components on a sherline mill - cases, cogs, small steering boxes etc. I'd like to try using Delrin here but buying sheet delrin is very pricy. Any sources of reasonable prices materials or suitable 'plastic' substitutes?

16/06/2021 16:10:51


Mia culpa if I've used poor descriptions but its actually quite straight forward.

The ID not OD of the spindle is 10mm and the Lathe chuck - 3 or 4 jaw is as you say 3/4 - 16tpi. This means that the spindle with the chuck on it has a 10mm hole right through is axis.

A stock piece to make say, a brass pulley, which is 10mm OD fits nicely through the hole and is clamped in place with the chuck. I then bore a hole in it with a 'drill' chuck fitted to the tailstock, say 3mm.

I can then place a 3mm rod into the tailstock drill chuck and use this as a dead centre poking it into the hole in the workpiece. When parting the workpiece can slide further onto the rod but is supported laterally.

Alternatively, if working from stock with a max diameter of 10mm I can position it so that it extrudes from the lathe chuck by say 25mm. Work on the end then loosen the chuck and slide it out another 10mm. This is not ideal as I lose indexing but with care this can be re-established. Ergo, the piece remains well supported laterally.

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