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Member postings for Calum Galleitch

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

Thread: Lower back issues
18/07/2021 12:03:19

As Rik rightly says, all backs are different, but one of the main causes of injury is that the muscles that support the spine do not get the work-out they need from modern lifestyles. A basic course of weightlifting - squats and deadlifts in particular - does a huge amount to help prevent injury, especially as we pass into the last third of our lives. Interestingly for many people weightlifting is also found to rehabilitate injuries, which might seem counter-intuitive.

Belts help by reinforcing what the stabiliser muscles do - which is why serious weightlifters use them - and for a one-off lift they make good sense. Wearing one all the time will in theory contribute to atrophy.

Thread: Vehicle reversing sensors
18/07/2021 11:52:24
Posted by roy entwistle on 18/07/2021 11:07:19:

I don't know about reversing sensors but about Christmas I parked in a supermarket car park, locked my Corsa using the remote and the Fiesta at the side unlocked.

Many years ago, my father, who was by trade a marine engineer, took a job in a motor garage after the collapse of the Clyde shipyards. On his first day, he was given the keys to a car - I forget the make but it was notorious for having only six different keyings - and drop it off, then walk half a mile and pick up another car of the same make at such and such an address. In a fit of absent-mindedness, he dropped the first car off, put the key in his pocket, walked to the new address, saw a car of the right make, put the key in it, and drove it back to the garage, promptly followed by the Old Bill, wanting to know why the garage had branched out into nicking cars.

Thread: Install & commission of a Chester Cub 630 (Warco GH750)
17/07/2021 23:01:06

I have the two V indicators similar to this pic (not my lathe):

screenshot from 2021-07-17 22-25-04.jpg

I don't have the I indicator at the top, but the socket itself is pointing between the Vs so I am fairly sure I should be turning anti-clockwise to vertical:

screenshot from 2021-07-17 22-25-27.jpg

I've got WD40 on hand, though I've seen suggestions that more powerful alternatives might be better - but I've no idea what they might be!

17/07/2021 20:59:59

So, today's query. Not urgent but will definitely need to work out a fix at some point: the (D1-5) camlock pins are stuck absolutely solid. I balked at the idea of paying £14 for a proper 11mm key, so instead did the sensible thing of spending all day making one, as well as buying a drilling vice to complete the project - make your own things, they said, save money, they said...

Anyway, the camlock sockets are the normal type, with v-indicators at three o'clock and six o'clock, and the socket arrow pointing somewhere in between them. All six sockets look like they're in the right place, I don't think there's any funny business going on like being tightened the wrong way, etc. It's either rust or the chuck was installed by the incredible hulk. I had a go with a helper bar, and bent the tommy bar, which is 8mm EN1A rod.

What should my next steps be? I assume a bit of WD40 won't do any harm, but otherwise I'm at a bit of a loss, and google doesn't seem to know much about it either.

Thread: Motorcycle General Discussion
16/07/2021 11:06:37

Post Hill in the late '20s:

Thread: Amazing Active geared ball joint
15/07/2021 17:01:02

> Covid 19 vaccines have been made in months rather than years

The AstraZeneca vaccine was produced in two (working!) weeks - the technology is such that you enter an RNA sequence and press the equivalent of the "print" button - then spend the rest of your time doing the trials and getting approvals.

Thread: Install & commission of a Chester Cub 630 (Warco GH750)
12/07/2021 23:47:50

Well, today's job was changing the oil in the headstock, thread gearbox, and apron. I chopped the top off an empty beercan, punched a hole in the bottom, installed a plastic electrical gland and inserted a bit of PVC tubing in it and tightened it up. Next time I'd use a larger ID hose, but it worked well enough. I drained 3-4 litres of oil from the headstock, and while it could probably have been a cleaner job there were no disasters.

I did consider mopping or siphoning the rest of the headstock out and cleaning out the sump, but since the lathe has been so little used I am assuming there is very little there to find. The oil that drained off certainly looked clean enough.

When I came to drain the threading gearbox and apron I got rather a surprise: both were completely dry! The drain plugs were good and tight, so possibly they've never been filled, or a previous attempt at maintenance was curtailed, who knows. The apron sight glass did look like it had had oil in it; I wasn't so sure about the threading gearbox. While I was doing the oily work, I took the opportunity to clean the heavy (factory?) grease off the change wheels to make them a bit more pleasant to work with.

With all that done, the lathe is actually ready to run! I don't have a full tooling complement yet, but a set of HSS cutters turned up from Warco the other day, and I bought a load of EN1A "bar ends" off the auction site to get the scrap pile started. So here, complete with accidental background music are (almost) the first chips off the lathe.

Thread: Shock at low pay for high skill
12/07/2021 10:38:10

> milk tanker drivers earn more per annum than toolmakers do

Yes, but milk tank drivers need (I presume, I don't know NZ's road licensing regime!) a specific ticket to drive a milk tanker, which are more dangerous than other tankers because they are unbaffled for hygiene reasons. Apply that on top of the fact that HGV drivers in general are always in short supply, and that you are always a heart murmer away from having your career cut short by the doctors, and you can see why the market is as it is. Skills and experience are part of what makes up a market salary, but not all of it.

11/07/2021 00:55:20

I think one point not perhaps clearly set out here is that it is the natural fate of the engineer for his or her work to be standardised and simplified and ultimately commodified: to be ripped off by rivals is the mark of a well designed product. For Brunel a well made bridge was a triumph: for us it is a project which will run more or less to plan, perhaps a little late, a little over budget, but it will be done to plan and no-one will die and the design will work. Whatever your place in the foodchain, from the guy that sweeps the floor to the pipe-smoker examining plans in the swanky HQ building far away from the dust and grime, that process of commodification is always at work and if you aren't constantly looking at your own place in the world someone will find a way to reduce your importance.

Thread: Garmin sat nav
11/07/2021 00:32:09

As per Steve, I have never used a satnav unit, built in or separate, that was better than my phone's Google Maps app. I have a little phone mount and cigarette lighter to USB adapter that keeps it running on long journeys, though in fact I tend to only end up using it for 'last mile' directions most of the time.

Thread: More security for the shed
10/07/2021 16:03:10

If anyone is interested in a more formal analysis, there is a very interesting chapter in a book on software security - often software can be breached if an attacker has physical access - which is worth a read:


Quite long, and not all of it relevant to securing a shed, but some interesting and useful ideas for anyone thinking about it.

Thread: Lathe gear calculation
10/07/2021 14:00:26

John, I quite take your point about the output requiring some intelligent interpretation. There's a balancing act between making such a tool capable of handling every case correctly, and it becoming too difficult to use for anyone but an expert - who probably doesn't need such a tool to begin with!

(Also it might be worth hiving off this software discussion to a separate thread?)

I'm more than happy to do some work on the tool to make it more generally useful/applicable, though I probably need some advice on how to do so. But as I see it, some immediately useful enhancements would be:

  • Entering an initial ratio (for example on my lathe, the first wheel revolves at 1/4 spindle speed)
  • Specifying the first wheel tooth count, if it is fixed
  • An option to account for an idler wheel?
    • And tracking leadscrew rotation direction?
  • Accounting for any quick change ratios present.
  • Distinguish between "actual" zero error and error less than tolerance.

I think these are all easy enough to code. What else would be useful?

Thread: More security for the shed
09/07/2021 16:27:20

A couple of thoughts (I once sold burglar alarms for a living).

Firstly, against the determined, targeted thief you can do nothing. For this, the only protection is insurance. Whatever requirements they have in terms of security, follow them.

Secondly, the opportunistic thief will attack the weakest point. If your shed is less inviting than your neighbour's, he will go elsewhere. There is a lot to be said for a slightly uncared for look to a property, secured with a large rusty padlock. Also, while you obviously can't do much about machine noise, try to avoid letting people know what you have and do in there. People do gossip. If asked, a bit of vagueness is often useful: "oh, just doing a bit of drilling..." Likewise, if your shed has windows, cover them from the inside when you're not in there. The usual things like security lights, and deterrents like boxes with little LED lights and fake cameras are useful to put off the amateurs.

Your biggest defence is probably your garden: plant the perimeter well with something deeply unpleasant and spiky, several feet deep, and have a strong locked gate. Leave your car in the way of an obvious route with something heavy.

Inside the workshop, bolt down and secure as much as you can. Place tools in lockable cupboards. The ideal is to leave nothing out you can lift with one hand (someone might try to pinch something heavier, but they will typically give up and throw it in a bush fifty yards away. If you have any moving equipment, keep it chained up, out of sight, or in the house.

There's also something to be said for leaving out "bait", something moderately valuable you don't mind losing - a cheap handheld electric drill might be an ideal example. A thief breaks in, sees that, grabs it and gets out sharpish, while the gauge block set sleeps soundly in its locked cupboard.

Thread: Lathe gear calculation
09/07/2021 14:41:44

The other thing I was careful to try to do was to make it all a single file, so you should be able to right-click and save it and it will work for as long as web browsers continue to support Javascript...

> Try 'afterend' rather than 'beforeend'

I thought this as well, but it turns out that 'afterend' means to place it after the closing tag of the HTML that you are referring to - in other words it writes the results outside the table! Useful I'm sure for some purposes, but not here.

It's not impossible to write a bit of code to sort the results afterwards - I thought about trying to sort by the size of the error, but then it occurred to me that probably the most useful metric is the practicality of the gear train, and I'm not sure if there's a sensible way of calculating this: perhaps the sum of squares of the differences of the compound gears? Suggestions welcome.

08/07/2021 22:48:31

Well, I have done some code-bashing with the equivalent of a gas torch and a large hammer, and the results of my labours may be seen here:

I have run it against Duncan's results and I get the same (note though the results may come in a different order), and I have calculated a couple by hand and agree with them, but of course I can't guarantee it against all the many wonderful ways computer programs can manage to fail.

I would welcome comments and suggestions for improvements - for my own benefit, I intend to add options for a screwcutting gearbox, and perhaps options to enter information in metric form. Would anything else be useful?

07/07/2021 22:06:21

Duncan, perhaps the best thing would be to rewrite it in Javascript and encapsulate it in a web page, which will ensure it will run on any machine for a very long time to come. An exe will only run on the architecture and operating system for which it is made. I'd be happy to give it a go if you like.

Thread: Uncertainty of Measurement [Global Warming]
07/07/2021 15:38:46

The actual mathematics being done is this: (t being the number of seconds since a basis date).

function calculateTempRise(t) {
return (1.2163 + (0.00000000075481*t));

While it's clearly ludicrous in terms of accuracy, as a visualisation of ongoing change for a non-technical audience I don't really see anything wrong with it.

> I wonder how many "Londoners" really would be affected by even a 1m rise in sea-level

Right now, the Thames Barrier prevents about 45 square miles of land in and around London being flooded by a major storm surge coinciding with a spring tide. More minor floods are averted by the barrier being operated six or seven times a year, around three times the expected usage when it was built. A normal spring tide in London brings the river almost to ground level in central London, and in fact routinely floods several areas further upriver.

What sounds like a small increase in sea level can have massive effects. Six inches would render large chunks of England's east coast untenable. A metre would mean the UK looking like nothing we would recognise.

Thread: Tool post height
06/07/2021 21:25:18
Posted by brian jones 11 on 06/07/2021 16:53:35:

also once a pix is inserted you cant move it or get below it for further text ?

If you have a keyboard, keep pressing the down key till you can't see it, then press enter (it will have been hiding on the right of the pic). Fiddly if you're using a tablet or phone, I suppose.

Thread: Install & commission of a Chester Cub 630 (Warco GH750)
06/07/2021 14:49:00

Yes, I see what you mean about metric threads, John - I'll have to do a little programming to work through all the combinations and see what works. With any luck, that might well do me - I don't anticipate doing much threading in general and I intend to remain as metric as possible.

Thread: Shock at low pay for high skill
05/07/2021 18:49:52
Posted by Tony Pratt 1 on 05/07/2021 17:49:04:

What constantly amazes me is the wage train drivers seem to get.

They are probably paid a bit higher than you'd expect, but on the other hand it isn't just drive in the right direction and follow the signs, and you can easily be responsible for 1000+ pax. With jobs like that, a big element of the pay is to make sure that you can eliminate financial stresses and strains in your private life, so you don't turn up at work with steam coming out your ears because you've been fighting with your SO about childcare and who does the hoovering.

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