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Member postings for Nick Clarke 3

Here is a list of all the postings Nick Clarke 3 has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Do you clean your workshop at the end of the day?
28/06/2019 18:25:15
Posted by jimmy b on 28/06/2019 18:21:52:

Sometimes i'm really good, other times, I just shut the door!


It is Friday night at the end of a hard week. There are three doors and a bottle of red wine between where I am sat in the living room and the workshop/garage.

What's the chance??

28/06/2019 17:39:50

Not the best time to ask as I am in the middle if a major reorganisation. Got three lathes and a milling machine that I can't use - in fact I can barely see one of the lathes!

Work is winding down for the summer so in a couple of weeks all should be well.


Thread: Model Engineering Overseas
24/06/2019 17:56:45

The ME index at gives several references to L.G. Tucker(s)

Yours is the next to last one.


Thread: Satnav
24/06/2019 17:46:44
Posted by Mike Poole on 24/06/2019 17:26:46:

Remember the days when you would get a map and write a list of road numbers and put it in the clear pocket on the top of your tank bag?


And then it rained and next time you looked the felt tip list had run and blurred and you were stuffed!


PS At one stage I ran a shed of a CZ 250 and my mate just glanced down at the list on my tank bag and quietly said - don't be silly it won't get that far! Then it hurt, but experience proved him to be correct more often than not! smiley

Thread: Chinese tacho - beware
21/06/2019 21:03:13

Thank you for your reply Barrie, however I was intending to comment on tool production in the far east, not the one off or small batch work you have no doubt a great deal of experience in.

As I said I was not commenting on setting up, either for one off or quantity but rather running a production process.

I think we are posting about two different things so, accepting your absolute right to agree/disagree or understand/misunderstand me I will leave it there.

Take care,


21/06/2019 20:07:44
Posted by Barrie Lever on 21/06/2019 19:46:03:


I can only assume you are joking with this line.

"And as CADCAM means that accuracy can be maintained with little or no skilled input"

Having been lucky enough to work with some of the most skilled and talented toolmakers and machinists on the south coast, I never saw the work that they done to have been succesful without a lot of skill.

Like I say I think you were joking !



I am sorry but no. The key word in my post was maintaining. Setting up a production process takes skill and knowledge and the toolmaking is obviously skilled as well, but unlike a manual or semi manual (eg capstan) system which needs a skilled operator, once it has been set up the task becomes one of machine minding and inspection of product.

I can't really make sense of your sentence, but I assume you are referring to manual machinists and toolmakers which were not what I was referring to in my post, quite the reverse in fact.


21/06/2019 19:16:03

I am often surprised by the opinions expressed about cheap tooling. There has been cheap tooling for the last 150 years or so - called continental, made in Hong Kong, Jap rubbish (or similar!) and at present it is China getting the abuse thrown at it.

If cheap does the job then don't pay more! It is a sound engineering axiom that accuracy costs money, so don't demand more accuracy than necessary for the job.

If the collet is too far out send it back, if it is too expensive to do that (would you pay postage on a three quid collet?) then buy another - you are still in pocket and it usually works, particularly if you are making parts to fit together rather than absolute sizes.

Today many brand names, even those with a reputation going back years, have changed hands so often that the name is all that is left - Moore and Wright has had 5 owners as far as I can see as one example.

They say quality tools will last a lifetime - but as an amateur how many times might I want to use something in the ten to twenty years remining to me? - and as CADCAM means that accuracy can be maintained with little or no skilled input, many cheap tools today are close to being as good as more traditionally made ones in the past - not feeling as nice, and perhaps not as long lasting, but in general accurate enough to do a job at a price that means they can be afforded and used in place of a second choice lash up. So affordable milling machines, collets, oxy-propane and all the other things unheard of in an amateurs workshop 30 years ago or so are nearly universal today.

Please can we condemn and banish from our workshops bad tooling - but that doesn't mean banning cheap tools or Chinese tools or any other tools unless they truly are unfit for the purpose and circumstances they are going to be used in!


Thread: Boiler cross tube leak.
20/06/2019 10:00:14

I agree that many small leaks can apparently be stopped in a boiler - potato peelings, mustard, china clay and porridge have all been suggested, and according to what I have read all work to a greater or lesser extent.

If an issue with insurance were to arise for operating in public, at a exhibition for example, then the appropriate boiler code would need to be followed which will specify the steps it is acceptable to take.

if it is only going to be run in private then you make your own decision and take responsibility as seems appropriate.

Thread: Improving runout in a slitting saw
18/06/2019 17:34:07

Apropos of nothing it is all part of the richness of the English language that 'Improving runout in a slitting saw' can mean both decreasing it and making it more concentric or increasing it and making it more eccentric.

I know what you mean, but isn't language wonderful!

Thread: Tools or 'things' as therapy
18/06/2019 17:17:20
Posted by Neil Wyatt on 18/06/2019 16:42:15:

Just to say, tools as therapy... buying them is almost as therapeutic as buying them

Presumably you mean as using them?

The pleasure of sorting through the adverts and catalogues, some sell it cheaper, but delivery is longer - is the item someone else is selling the same? But the first supplier you look at has a reputation for poor customer service, while the next is great, but more expensive - then someone suggests an auction site or an Asian mega site. What to do?

At last the decision is made. To hell with it, hit the credit card. When the box, crate or Jiffy bag arrives unwrap it and remove the preservative. Stroke it. Stroke it. My precious, My precious.

Imagine Blofeld in the Bond movies with the white cat and you get the right image.

Better stop now and get back to my drawing. With green crayon. They don't allow me anything sharp in here!


PS To Plasma: "I love all my tools, machines and assorted nick knacks"

Look at my username please.


Edited By Nick Clarke 3 on 18/06/2019 17:26:52

Thread: Illegal CD copy
13/06/2019 22:05:34

I'm not certain that making a living or adding to a pension is quite doing it for the money ........

No one could deny that LBSC was a small locomotive enthusiast even if he lived off his writings and equally Don Young retired from marine engineering and wrote for ME as well as his own magazine.

ditto ditto Keith Wilson and Tubal Cain

Thread: Material storage fpr Lathe/other machines
13/06/2019 17:58:28
Posted by mechman48 on 13/06/2019 12:11:26:

I can still see the garage floor... so I must be doing something wrong... thinking


Don't worry the floor will disappear from view sooner or later, I think mine does about 35 milliseconds after clearing it on average!

Thread: Illegal CD copy
13/06/2019 17:48:58
Posted by Bandersnatch on 13/06/2019 17:23:41:
Posted by Frances IoM on 13/06/2019 16:18:36:
some computer mags issue a compendium DVD as a freebie in place of their usual monthly DVD.

At least one computer magazine (MagPi) gives away (free) their monthly magazine in pdf form as well as selling the hard copy.

This is sponsored though and not a commercial operation. I don't believe the print version has been available for long.

13/06/2019 17:47:27

I am not certain I am totally in sympathy with some of the posts in this thread as the general tone is that someone who creates something - be it a writer creating an article or a publisher creating a magazine is 'in the wrong' for selling that thing at a fair price.

The message I am getting is 'I wish to buy years of magazines on a dvd for very little money'

Buying ME in print costs me about £61 a year on subscription and I am happy to pay that. I have no doubt the publishers are happy to get their share of that too. If a CD was put out at the end of each year it would need to bring in I guess £20 to the publisher to be the equivalent. If each DVD was copied a couple of times for free the price would need to be £60 for the publisher to make the same amount of money as selling the DVDs. If copied more times it would need to be proportionally more expensive. (And that is assuming all copyright clearances could be obtained - and we have been told that they can't for older editions) So unless there is a cast iron way of preventing copying - and there isn't, it does not make economic sense to put out a DVD.

If you think that is far fetched a single digital copy of the Elektor magazine mentioned above is €7.50 every other month - three times the price of a single print copy of ME.

Like MichaelG suggested buy the magazines and scan for your own use only. You are legal and you have the scanned editions for the price of a blank disk - but don't ask for something which cannot easily be provided and which couldn't be provided at a cost that was fair to the publisher and reasonable to you.

Thread: Class 22 Diesel (next project)
13/06/2019 12:17:57

Ron I know you have described your traction engine, but the idea just crossed my mind - why not make it a showman's and have the motor as the dynamo - doing things in reverse so to speak. OK I know it is not prototype practise to move running the dynamo, but the engine look could be made good?

Just a thought - I'll go back to sleep now smiley

Edited By Nick Clarke 3 on 13/06/2019 12:18:08

Thread: Illegal CD copy
11/06/2019 17:23:08

I deal with copyright in education on a frequent basis as part of the day job and the simple answer given by Neil, ie copyright in this country lasts 70 years after death of author and 25 years for a layout is the one all responsible businesses, publishers, editors and magazines can adhere to and be safe and able to operate.

I am not a copyright lawyer, but I suggest all of the other suggestions put forward are almost 'get out' clauses or exceptions to the basic rules listed above. In order to rely on any of these I would suggest consulting a lawyer specialising in copyright as the only safe route to a certain answer, and even then case law may need to be established.

A couple of pointers however - while the overarching legislation is indeed the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, section 29 this now incorporates the Copyright and Rights in Performances (Research, Education, Libraries and Archives) Regulations 2014

These say, as has been suggested already, that you can copy just about anything but the copier must 'have lawful access to' it ie that they own it and they are not borrowed or acquired illegally. This copy should be acknowledged if practical to do so. It also states that 'transferring' the copy to anyone else infringes copyright so the suggestions that you can copy a mate's stack of magazines is just plain false, and that if you sell or give the copy away you are breaking the law.

There are other rules for education and teaching that allow partial copying, but an individual is unlikely to come under this heading.

As I started out though, IMHO stick to the simple way and you are unlikely to go wrong - look for an exception and you may be in trouble.

Edited By Nick Clarke 3 on 11/06/2019 17:26:21

Thread: Why a round bed?
10/06/2019 14:31:49
Posted by Lee Rogers on 10/06/2019 14:08:40:

I have to put in a good word for the roundbed. A handy machine if used within reason and still very popular. You do need to bin the insert tools and learn to grind HSS . Also think rigid with all your set ups. I've seen so many forum posts about poor finish on old lathes and the problem is nearly always a carbide tool in a QCTP with more overhang than a pagoda. A good roundbed that's well equipped will still fetch a good price because it's capable, compact and light.

I agree except for the last part - for a small lathe, mine is ********** heavy!!

Thread: Illegal CD copy
10/06/2019 14:28:51

I doubt they are any more legit but 200 or so issues of ME are available to download from the Wayback machine -


Edited By Nick Clarke 3 on 10/06/2019 14:29:27

Thread: C1 lathe opinions
10/06/2019 12:56:12
Posted by Mick B1 on 10/06/2019 10:53:53:
Posted by Nick Clarke 3 on 10/06/2019 10:20:29:

Taper turning is quite possible by setting over the tailstock.

OK, but it's very limited in taper angle, not strictly correct in the engagement of the centres, not suitable for chuck work, and can be fiendishly fiddly to set straight again afterwards!

I agree but compromises need to be made when a small machine is used and what might be chuck work on a larger machine, for example, might need to be between offset centres on this one.

As regards resetting the tailstock in particular it is no more difficult to do than resetting the tailstock on any other machine, and I would not be really happy with the accuracy of resetting a topslide against the scale alone on any lathe, so the difference is less than might be imagined.

10/06/2019 10:20:29

I have just upgraded from a C1 to a Sieg SC3 from Arc Eurotrade. Admittedly it is the longer bed versions but you are quite right it is a definite 2 man lift compared to the smaller lathe which i can manage on my own.

The mere fact that I feel the need to upgrade may give well out a message - there is a significant difference in capacity between the two machines, however that does not mean that the smaller lathe is useless.

Within its capacity it is a strong and apparently accurate machine. It has a smaller brushed motor and is definitley low powered, but taking small cuts it can work with steel as well as brass and aluminium.

There is no topslide as standard and while still listed they are expensive (£130+) and hard to find. In its favour however is that the lack of a topslide means that the crossslide has 2 t slots and can be used for boring and facing. Taper turning is quite possible by setting over the tailstock.

The lathe is quite expensive in comparison to the larger 'mini' lathes and some of the accessories that come with them (eg changewheels) are extra on the C1.

In the near future my machine may well appear on an auction site, but the fact that there are few advertised on eBay, and all of those have sold might indicate they are useful to the right person.

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