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Member postings for tractionengine42

Here is a list of all the postings tractionengine42 has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: What did you do today (2015)
25/01/2015 06:20:25

Concerning CAD, as an experienced user of Autodesk Inventor and Solid Works IMHO Cubify Design excels in ease of use, functionality and price.

After looking at several packages for home use, I have bought Cubify Design which allows 3D part design, assemblies and drawings, it operates similar to the afore mentioned high end packages.

I much prefer 3D design software that allow editing of original sketches used to create the 3d model, this presents all the data when editing. With some packages you don't have the original sketch and edit the 3D part directly which IMO is much less convenient than it would appear.

If you have an interest in 3D cnc or 3D printing and only need 3D part design (i.e. don't need assembly or drawings) then Cubify Invent is available at a very low price.


Thread: 3D printing seems to have gone quiet. Where are we all at?
18/01/2015 16:48:22

I tend to agree with Bazyle above, I have been offered a RepRap kit of parts with PBC etc., I've had a look at it as an alternative to buying a low cost 3d printer. I was thinking of perhaps building the RepRap but design in improvements right from the start. It's designed to be built with little tooling and low cost, with a workshop full of gear there must be some scope for me to make improvements in the build.

The frame is bolt together threaded studding so replace this with a more suitable and rigid frame.

The extruder build looks crude, is it a source of problems?, perhaps replace it with one used on the low cost Chinese machines, these seem to be available on ebay.

What other improvements could be made?

Perhaps an interesting exercise but is it worth the effort?

My use will likely be intermittent.


18/01/2015 07:21:22

Further to my post a above, thanks for the very helpful feedback re De Vinci 3D printer. Jason's MEM link was particularly helpful which includes links to some informative you tube video reviews.

Negative comments about the firmware and cartridges rather put me off the Di Vinci machine. While I don't mind a bit of mechanical hacking to improve a machine I don't feel confident hacking the firmware, the supplied firmware looks particularly lacking in flexibility and functionality.

I am also put off buying a cheap machine from ebay (due to -ve feed back concerning machines and suppliers.

So still pondering.



08/01/2015 21:52:07


I am thinking of buying a Da Vinci 3D printer.

Anyone able to share there experience using one of these?

They look to be very well supported regarding replacement parts as compared to the usual Chinese imports seen on ebay though a little more expensive.

Appreciate any feedback.



Thread: Outstanding Service
07/01/2015 17:05:49


I would like to add Emkay Screw Supplies to the list of outstanding service.

I've just received some BSW csk screws at very reasonable price and postage cost, I'm very happy to recommend them.

Very smooth and quick transaction conducted by email.


Thread: Free Plastic
29/12/2014 21:34:17

Hi Graham

I also sent PM recently.

Very best wishes for the New Year.


Thread: Where to buy conical washers.
18/12/2014 22:31:28

From google search

Concave and convex M5 washers



Edited By tractionengine42 on 18/12/2014 22:33:58

Thread: I'm Stuck
16/12/2014 16:59:12


I agree with your explanation of an cooler arbour becoming stuck when inserted into a warmer spindle socket and the spindle subsequently cools.

But once stuck and subsequently running the machine to warm the spindle, the arbour will also warm and both expand equally, so the arbour will remain stuck. This is what I think John was referring to when he said he was not sure about the warming argument.


Thread: Should you really get the biggest lathe possible?
05/12/2014 08:55:44
Posted by David Colwill on 05/12/2014 08:33:10:

I often hear people say buy the biggest machine that you can possibly fit in your workshop

I think it's a statement made with respect to hobby machines, industrial sized machines are rather over kill in a model engineering context, for the vast majority at least.

My Worco 12x 24 lathe and VMC mill have good capacity and would be considered large capacity machines so much so I do also have a Sherline lathe and mill for tiny work. In a model engineering context these are the 2 extremes.


Edited By tractionengine42 on 05/12/2014 08:56:53

Thread: Armstrong-Siddeley Lynx IV radial
04/12/2014 10:10:56

Hi Stephen

I have an interest in Rotary and Radial engines, after reading your very interesting article in ME I was hoping to here more news of progress and here we have it. Very glad to here your model is now running, unfortunately the MEX exhibition to far for me as I am in Aberdeenshire, I would love to see it in the flesh. Be good if you could make the Harrogate show in 2015.

I will be looking for a new project next summer, I think this radial may be a timely contender, I do prefer the larger scale and there looks to be some interesting machining challenges.

Beautiful model, very well done indeed.


Thread: first go at Tig Welding
20/11/2014 23:07:10

I have been thinking about tig,  a friend of mine uses sil-bronze for welding/brazing motor cycle frames.

Here is tig brazing steel to st st.


Edited By tractionengine42 on 20/11/2014 23:21:08

Edited By tractionengine42 on 20/11/2014 23:23:29

Thread: Shaper problem
08/11/2014 04:43:28
Posted by ronan walsh on 07/11/2014 23:25:45:

Could you not drill the end of the leadscrew and fit a pin into it so it cannot come out of the nut ?

As indicated by Robbo, it's a deliberate feature to prevent damage should the operator allow the table to move past the end of it's stroke on power feed. I frequently set the auto feed on my Elliott and walk away to do something else, a couple of times I have not returned in time before the table reached the end of its stroke, this feature prevented damage to the feed screw etc. it's a good feature to have and keep.


Thread: Advertising
07/11/2014 08:15:51

Bert, have a look in your control panel - programs and look down the list for any unexpected programs.

I found 2 programs had been installed without my knowledge, one was called something like "shopad", after un-installing the programs this problem disappeared.


Thread: arduino uses ?
26/10/2014 11:20:42

I found these 2 books very good for a complete beginner. I would recommend Getting Started with Sketches as a first buy. These combined with an Arduino starter kit got me going.

Getting started with sketches

Adruino workshop


26/10/2014 11:12:21

Aduino uses: -

Could an Arduno board be used to synchronise a mill spindle (with encoder) with a stepper driven rotary table/head to allow gear hobbling on the milling machine? I have the CES hobbing machine castings under, maybe here is an opportunity to enhance the machine and eliminate all those gear trains needed?

Convert a hand operated surface grinder to automatic operation using stepper motors, the idea being you can input the X traverse and feed rate + y traverse, feed rate and step over per pass. Maybe OTT for this type of board?

I have no electronics experience but I have had a play with an arduino Uno and found it quit fascinating. I used one for a work project cycling hydraulic cylinders under test. I arranged it so that you input the advance and retract times and the no of cycles required, The arduno interfaces the pump control box via a relay board, it starts the pump, operates the advance/retract solenoid valve for the required no cycles then stops the pump. Via a pressure switch, if the pressure does not increase (probably due to a hose/seal failure) after a few seconds it stops the test. It also monitors the pump temperature and stops the test it exceeds 50degC.+ a few flashing LED's to add interest This was a very good learning exercise and has worked well for the last 6 months.


Thread: Boiler thickness and pressure
23/10/2014 12:28:18

If your model is to be insured and steamed in public, should it not be the case of establishing what design stress, joint factor and safety margins are acceptable to the boiler inspector and insurance company. Then the design can be worked out to meet their requirements and subsequently approved by them. In other words what code of practice do they accept?

Although you have done some testing to justify to yourself the safety of your design these are unlikely to be taken into consideration by your boiler inspector or insurance company unless very well documented and maybe also witnessed.

I am not familiar with the formulas stated above, the following table shows calculated tube thickness using a standard hoop stress formula (also typically used in pressure vessel codes). I have used some values suggested above for yield stress and joint factor and included a range of safety margins for comparison. Normally you would establish a design stress based upon material mechanical properties and operating temperature and use this in the formula.

Other considerations concerning boiler tube thickness will be a) does the boiler tube support any other significant structures like cylinders etc. b) what reinforcement is applied to openings/nozzles.

One method concerning openings/nozzles is to use an 'area replacement method', basically you take a section through the opening/nozzle, calculate the area of material removed then ensure that any reinforcing ring has at least the same section area. If the boiler tube is thicker than theoretical then the extra thickness above theoretical can be included in the calculation, for example, if the theoretical thickness is 0.05" and the actual thickness is 0.15" then there is a good chance that a reinforcing ring is not needed as the actual tube thickness already has sufficient strength. There is a specified method for determining the width of any reinforcing ring, I would have to look this up.

boiler tube calculation.jpg

Here's a useful source of information.

I hope this is useful info.


Thread: Sourcing deoxy copper plate
22/10/2014 10:32:56

There's a explanation of hydrogen embrittlement in copper here, in particular refer to text just above fig 16.


21/10/2014 12:16:37


Ye looks like C101 should be avoided as it's not oxygen free, apologies for my bum steer.

There's some comprehensive technical data on that Cup Alloys website, very interesting.


21/10/2014 09:16:22

Hi Fizzy

C101 is 99.9% pure copper, not absolutely sure if that's what you need but CES do sell it in 16 swg


Thread: Free Plastic
08/10/2014 00:20:56

Hi Graham

No desperation at all, please take your time.

I also sent a PM and payment on 5th and have not received any PM or confirmation.

No worries.


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