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Member postings for mgnbuk

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

Thread: Boxford machinery auction
14/02/2019 09:56:59


Following on from an earlier posting about Boxford's premises having a For Sale sign before Christmas, details of a sale of machine tools popped in to my Inbox this morning.

Can't think that they will be making a lot when those machines have gone, but note the reason as "rationalisation of the business" so not dead yet ?

Nigel B

Thread: Y axis problem
14/02/2019 08:02:06

Nearly but not quite - see annotations above

"T type of cutter - cutter number, used for toolchangers, it doesn't say anything about the type of cutter, simply where to find it" Depends on the system - some use the T number to call the tool offsets as well, so also applicable to machines without an ATC

% end program - more an end of file marker, somewhat obsolete now that programs are normally stored in memory rather than loaded on the fly from tape Still used on Fanuc

H home position - tool length offset, ie, relative length of each tool, and where to find it in the tool table Not on all systems, as above.

Nigel B

Thread: Stepper motor and surface finish
12/02/2019 19:52:53

Many Matchmakers with Posidata stepper motor controls in industry back in the '70s, along with Bridgeports with (IIRC) the "Boss" stepper motor control. Acton & Beaver used the Posidata system as well. These used 1/2 step drivers so pretty coarse by modern standards, yet I saw those machines making aircraft & turbine parts and used in goverment research departments.

I took ptenty of those systems off & replaced them with Heidenhain controls & DC servo drive sytems (SEM motors & Indramat amplifiers) in the mid-'80s to mid '90s in a previous employment.. I don't recall anyone commenting on improved surface finish after the conversions, which were usually done to gain reliability and improve useability. Going closed loop with a measuring system & not having to deal with lost steps was also an advantage.

Doing such retrofits died the death when the smaller capacity machines that usually had the stepper motor controls got cheaper new (like Bridgeport Interacts & Spanish/Taiwanese imports) & the cost of the conversions rose over time, so it no longer made financial sense to retrofit an old machine.

Nigel B

10/02/2019 10:43:35

When the wiring was removed, a crimp fell off too

Not really suprising since none of the remaining connectors are properly crimped. Looks like they were bodged on with a pair of those awful pressed steel abominations sold as "crimping tools" - such "tools" get an otherwise reliable termination system a bad name.

Nigel B (Boxford 8" shaper owner)

Thread: Boyes of York, good value
08/02/2019 13:44:13

Not all Boyes stores carry all items, though. The original store in Scarborough & the Skipton store are far larger than my local store in Brighouse, for example. Brighouse doesn't carry as comprehensive a range of hobby lines as Skipton - no Vallejo Model Air paints in Brighouse, just Model Color for example. So if you want something specific, it may be worth phoning the store you intend to visit to ensure that they carry the item - though I apprecaite that could be difficult if you don't know what the full product range is !

Nigel B

Thread: Tinhat warrior trademark.
01/02/2019 16:59:24

I prefer the TS250s to the ETZs (250 or 251) - less peaky power delivery & more economical, but the disadvantages of 6v electrics and drum brakes. I had one of the last DDR-era produced ETZ251s, (in a fetching shade of beige) rescued from my brother-in-law, who had bought it new but then lost interest & left it festering in a damp garage. Build quality had rather gone down hill by the end of the DDR, though. Didn't keep it long, though did do a round trip to the Ace Cafe for the first "Red October" East European bike day on it - near 400 miles in the day & a long way to go for an expensive, indifferent burger !

My late friend Mark Dicker was Classics Officer for the MZ Riders Club & he reckoned that the ETZs would disappear before the earlier bikes due to frame corrosion - the area of the frame that the footrest bar bolts to rots off. The frame is used as part of the inlet air system & heavier dust accumulates at the bottom of the frame - this gets & stays damp, causing the frame to corrode from inside. The TSs used a similar intake system, but the tubular frames were heavier gauge than the sheet steel box section on the ETZs, so they last better + the tube is blanked off with an easily removed plastic plug that enables the dust to be cleaned out. The ETZs have (IIRC - it has been a while) a welded on closure with a small, easily blocked, drain hole. May be worth checking this area on your tidy bike ?

I have 6 in various states of assembly & function - 3 off TS250/1, and ES250/2, an ES150/1 and an ETS250 G5 ISDT Replica , of which only the oldest TS250/1 (which I have owned for 29 years) is running. So many projects - so little time !

Nigel B

Thread: Parting off tool - straight or angled.
01/02/2019 13:31:28

I use a small diamond ball cutter in a Dremel to put a dimple in the top face, just behind the cutting edge. This mimics the form of a parting insert & distorts the swarf, which comes off narrower than the groove, so no jammimg.

Nigel B

Thread: Tinhat warrior trademark.
01/02/2019 13:19:16

Come a long way since I first threw a leg over a BSA Bantam two-stroker.

BSA Bantams are mirror image MZs - with the quality engineered out !

The second most produced motorcycle engine of all time, the DKW RT125. Given as war reparations to BSA (who didn't really want it !) & Harley Davidson & widely copied by many others (including the first Yamahas). The DKW factory was dismantled lock, stock & barrel & taken to the USSR as part of reparations, where the RT125s designer - Hermann Weber - died in a Russian labour camp after the war.

Nigel B

Thread: Parting off tool - straight or angled.
01/02/2019 13:12:47

Why should the rear tool post give a better result then the standard tool post ?

When the parting too is inverted in the rear tool post, if it digs in it can "escape" into fresh air, whereas a front mounted tool will get dragged into (and under) the workpiece and probably break was the reason I recall being given.

Isn't the idea with the angled holder to give easier sharpening of the tool blank ? The top rake is provided by the tool holder, so only the front face of the tool blank requires grinding. On a "flat" holder, top rake as to be ground in, which can lead to more wastage on the tool blank when regrinding is required.

Nigel B

Thread: Tinhat warrior trademark.
01/02/2019 13:06:48

1 per cent oil mix in a two-stroke bottom end and cylinder? That sounds pretty radical. Is it possible with synthetic oils?

MZ had engines reliably running at 100:1 on synthetic oils before they suffered from German reunification. They were looking for ways to reduce emissions as regulations tightened, but didn't formally adopt the leaner pre-mix as it was felt that accurately administering the smaller quantities of oil was likely to be problematic in the real world. The adoption of Mikuni dosing pumps on export bikes reduced emissions compared to premix bikes - the effective ratio on the pumps was around 32:1 at full throttle, but leaned off to around 70:1 a low speeds/ throttle openings, compared to 50:1 on premix versions. My wife always hangs back if she is following me on a premix MZ after prolonged town running, as the over-lubrication puddles in the crankcase & clears (smokily - for a couple of hundred yards) when accelerating when the restrictions clear. No visible smoke at higher speeds with modern oils, though.

Nigel B (two stroke fan since 1976)

Thread: Vfd
29/01/2019 18:13:59

2 little round things like a lolly on 2sticks

Could be NTC inrush current limiters - these are a highish resistance cold & heat up when the current to the rectifier & capacitors flows (at a reduced level, due to the resistance). As they heat up, the resistance reduces towards zero. Their purpose is to "softly" charge up the capacitors on start-up & some types look as you describe.

I have had a couple (in small power supplies) that have gone pop & failed open circuit, so no current flows. There should be a part number on the side of the device - hopefully still readable if it is burnt - that should allow identification & replacement. A search for NTC inrush current limiters will get hits to Franell, Mouser, Digikey etc.


Nigel B

Thread: Some big tools
24/01/2019 19:28:46

made by Futurmill a firm based in Brighouse Yorks

Now long gone. I'm pretty sure that the old mill that used to bear their name on Wakefield Road is now the site of the Lidl I do my weekly shop at. Kendal & Gent still appear to be in business, though no longer building large machines.

Mike's Ingersoll is about the size of the Craven (with Futuremill head) at Broadbents in Mytholmroyd - my first "proper" job after finishing my apprenticeship. A bit of a change after my last year at Boxfords ! The Craven was also in a pit (to give clearance for the overhead gantry crane), which had a sump with a permenantly running drain pump in one corner as the pit base was below the water table - the canal towpath ran behind the electrican's shop (next to the pit) at about head height & the river Calder was just across the road. The Broadbent works is also long gone (as is the old Boy Lane, Wheatley, Boxford works) - now the site of several appartment blocks.

Nigel B

Thread: Precision Level or Precision Frame Level
23/01/2019 07:55:48

As far as I know precisions levels were extensively used in engineering and machine shops in olden times (even sometimes nowadays)

Not sometimes, pretty much all the time when building and installing machine tools. I have two precision block levels at work and use them during the installation of every machine that comes in to the works. Once set, regular checks as part of routine maintenance show if the machine has moved and requires adjustment. Level checks are the first checks specified in machine inspection records - correct levels being a pre-requisit of the following accuracy checks.

I would like to have box level as well as the two block levels - if I could only have one type, I would prefer a box level. At my last employment (CNC machine tool rebuild & retrofit) we had 2 calibrated box levels (one magnetic), a block level & a Talyvel electronic level (with block and box frames) and could not have functioned without them. Another area were the model engineering fraternity take a different view to industrial practice ?

Nigel B

Thread: Some big tools
18/01/2019 20:26:57

"Its the largest milling machine in the world" - 'cept it isn't - its a vertical borer, not a milling machine.

Neither is the centre lathe or the floor borer - an old Asquith.

Impressive project, though.

Nigel B

Thread: VAT on eBooks
18/01/2019 20:09:00

No doubt we will end up adopting new models, but I very much doubt if a small share of £8 a month would offset the loss of subscription income. It's only going to work for titles with very wide appeal not specialist audiences.

Seems MTM do actually use a competitor subscription service to Readly - Magzter Gold - and ME and MEW are on it So this new model is working for them already ? I see from a quick look at the titles available on Magzter Gold that there are quite few publishers using both subscription services, so maybe MTM could be persuaded to join them & increase their readership ?

From what I can gather, Readly pay the publishers for issues read, so the publishers are not giving away their products FoC.

Nigel B

18/01/2019 15:43:07

Unfortunately when the traditional business model fails you will lose professionally produced magazines and along with everyone else.

So where does Readly come in to the traditional periodical publishing business model, Neil ?

I don't mean that in a provocative way, just interested. Some of the larger publishing houses appear to support it (like Bauer & Archant for instance). Not just the latest issue available, but a couple of years worth of back issues for most titles as well - all for £8(ish) a month. MTM noticably absent at the moment, along with Mortons (motorcycle magazines), but this may change ?

I took out a trail subscrpition with their "Black Friday" deal of £1.99 for 2 months & will continue with it - I get to read most of the British & Continental motorcycle magazines I normally bought the odd issue of + have found others I didn't know about before. Plus the airgun & shooting mags I used to subscribe to & I have a had a brief look at some german ME mags - and there are thousands more to choose from.

Is this a way forward ? I would concede that the tablet reading experience is harder on the eyes than paper, but the ability to download issues to the tablet to read off line is very convenient & has it got me to read titles I had lapsed subscritions on, re-introduced me foreign magzines I used to buy ad hoc but dropped due to the cost, introduced titles that were otherwise unkown or unavailable or of insufficient direct interest to buy regularly.

It used to be bandied about that publishers made the bulk of their money from advertisers & that the cover price just covered the printing & distribution costs. I don't know if that is true or not, but if the goal is to get as many people to read the magazines to attract the advertisers, then a more modern distribution model like Readly may help save the day ?

Nigel B

Thread: Free Electricity
17/01/2019 08:02:24

Not so free if and when you wish to sell your house. The legalities, etc likely cost the vendor thousands. These rented roofs are a minefield for potential house purchasers. Far better to install your own kit and avoid the third party renters of equipment.

Both my neighbours had the panels fitted by A Shade Greener shortly after I had mine installed & both subsequently sold on. The first had a bit of a gripe from the Halifax BS, but A Shade Greener put an additional clause in the contract that allowed, in the event that HBS re-possesed the house, that ASG would remove the installation without charges if requested to do so - a "backstop" in current parlance, I suppose. Neither my original or new neighbours suggested that this had cost them any extra. With so many of this type of installation (ASG had over 10,000 at the time I saw a TV report about them moving out of their original area into ours & got in touch with them), arrangements will be made to accomodate them when properies get sold.

At the time of installation, the arrangement we have would have cost around £18K so, for me at the time, an outright purchase of my own installation was not possible. Installation costs did come down a lot as numbers of installations increased, so several years later owning my own may have been an option. As it is I generate around 4500 kwh a year, for which ASG receive (IIRC) 42p per kwh FiT & I get to use the electricity FOC - what I can't use at the time it is generated feeds back into the mains.

Nigel B

16/01/2019 18:51:36

Yes we all know that you there is no such thing as electricity for free

Not so - I get up to 3Kw totally free when the sun shines in summer & up to 2Kw in winter.

I just let a company called A Shade Greener fill the south facing side of my roof with solar PV panels - they own the panels & are responsible for maintaing them for 25 years. They get paid the Feed in tariffs & I get to use all the electricity they produce at no cost. At the end of the 25 year period (when the Fits end) they give me the installation FoC, so totally free electricity.

Nigel B

Thread: Autocad 2000 Cant draw at a chosen angle.
16/01/2019 18:44:17

Sounds like it is working as I recall it did. The absolute zero degree point is at the 3 o'clock position relative to the centre point - 90 degrees is 12 o'clcock, 180 degrees at 9 o'clock & 270 degrees at 6 o'clock.

To get your line to point 30 degrees "downwards" to the left of centre, use -30 degrees or 330 degrees, if you want it to go to the right of centre use 210 degrees.

Hope I understood your question correctly & that this helps.

Nigel B

Thread: Anyone fitted a DRO to Sieg SC4?
12/01/2019 10:30:35

A laser DRO surely can't be far away now

Laser measuring systems suitable for machine tools have been available for years - Renishaw make them (and probably others). You could comprehensively outfit a complete ME workshop for less then the cost of a single axis installation (without counter / console) though. Probably don't need nanometer resolution in the home workshop either.

While I dare say that lower resolution electronics could be made at a lower cost, chances are that the main expense lies with the optics required (beam splitter & reflector).

Nigel B

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