By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more

Member postings for Falco

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

Thread: What solenoid to use?
16/10/2019 19:48:34

John, Simon, thank you, lots of useful info.

15/10/2019 19:19:05

Neil; anything over a force 5 will overwhelm the normal bathroom Louvre fans and make them rattle. I need to provide for the occasional force 9!

Duncan: Wiring one solenoid , maybe. Two of them, no chance! No electrical genius here. A simple actuator seems my best solution. Most seem to be DC.

I have never had one in the hand so to speak. Am I right in thinking that when the power is cut off them that they stay put in that position until re-activated?


13/10/2019 20:55:37

Thank you to all who replied. A few good leads there and I'm leaning towards linear activator or the car door lock actuator for simplicity. I'll do a read-up and search for sources.


12/10/2019 23:13:26

I live in a windy area and have wondering how to close the house ventilation flaps firmly using a solenoid. eg cooker fans, toilet vents etc. Most would be 6" or 8" pipes out through the outside wall with a flap closing off the flow somewhere along the length of the pipe between appliance and outside.

I want the flap to open when a fan is switched on and vice versa. My problem is how to find / choose a solenoid that will hold a flap open for periods of use and not get so hot as to be dangerous. These would be placed in hidden areas of the building so they must be fairly foolproof. The necessary throw would be 1" - 2".

I have some ex-equipment solenoids but I'm not up to speed enough to know whats safe to use in this sort of situation and what is not.

Any advice on how to proceed will be welcome.

Thread: Motorcycle General Discussion
03/08/2019 00:14:53

Hi Neil, I have had a look and that is just what I need.

Many thanks for your help and quick reply. Much appreciated!.


02/08/2019 20:47:43

.bulb 3.jpgHi Members,

I'm tidying up a Moto Morini 250 twin at the moment. There is a small indicator/warning light bulb missing and I have been unable to find a supplier. The bulb is one of the wedge or capless ones but is smaller than the usual ones. It is only 5.25mm diam. and overall length is 18.75mm. The actual bulbous part is 11.5mm long.

It is 6Volt.

Does anyone know a supplier?

Would the LED bulbs that are becoming popular work in the 6 Volt system? bulb 2.jpg

Thread: Snail Problems
29/06/2019 23:40:37

We had a serious problem with slugs and snails a few years back. We tried beer traps etc etc. No success. I happened to be in the garden one damp night late with a flashlight. If you haven't done you should! All the big slugs are out and some of them are up to 6 inches long! Hundreds of them! So, a new approach was needed. I regularly went out before bedtime with my torch and a well sharpened bread knife. One stroke each! There were no repeat offenders and you caught the ones that were doing the damage.

The thrushes woke up each morning to ready served breakfast and loved it. After two seasons there was a big drop in large breeding snails/ slugs to be seen. This year there is only the occasional one to be seen. OK not PC or for discussion in polite circles but effective.

Thread: Does a 1600rpm bantam have a single v belt?
14/04/2019 22:42:28

Mine has a single belt also. 1967 model if memory serves me right. J


Thread: Modern efficiency !!!!!!!!!
18/12/2018 22:40:52


I can sympathise with your plight. I know plenty who have been similarly caught. Not much encouragement to being a "sensible " driver.

As George says above, it really does not take a lot to keep it clear. I do a fortnightly blast in 3rd gear for a few miles well up in the rev range, but staying out of lunatic territory. Say 6 - 6500rpm on a car redlined at 8000rpm, but you must keep the revs up there steadily for 5mins at least and it is best done when the engine has already warmed up.

You may burn a little bit of fuel but nothing like you'll pay out if you don't. Not trying to teach anyone how to suck eggs here, but it has worked well for me.


Thread: Colchester Bantam Lathe
29/05/2014 23:29:01

Sandy, if and when you get fixed up with a bed-stop and if you want to adjust the clutch to trip reliably I may be able to help with the relevant info.

I'm using a home made stop and yes it needs to be tight if the bedways are lubricated. I'd be keen to see dimensions of the Colchester stop.

Trevor, I have to agree on the Bantam. Probably the ideal smaller, rock-solid lathe for the home workshop.


Thread: Perfectly ground Twist Drills every time.
15/05/2014 22:28:32


I found the same problem on my jig. It was endlessly fiddly trying to set the lip stop while keeping the cutting edge vertical. I tried lots of times on different sizes of drills and every time the setting had to be changed. I gave up in the end, removed the stop and now I eyeball it to vertical on the first edge. I use Harold Hall's 180deg. attachment to get the two lips the same. Results are generally very acceptable.

One other problem contributes to poor results with these jigs. It fooled me for quite awhile! I found that the lock-down mechanism on the cradle could lock the drill slightly to the side and not exactly in the V of the cradle. This naturally led to poor results. This is not always obvious without actually looking down the length of the V before grinding. Graham's new V insert and the two clamps should eliminate this problem.


13/05/2014 00:19:31

We are lucky to have Neil as an enlightened Moderator on the forum.

I am delighted Graham Meek’s thread is not going to be locked. It really is too bad that someone who has gone to the trouble to research a well -known problem and tried to offer a solution to fellow model engineers would feel his efforts so slighted as to want to withdraw his work. And why? All because he works to a high standard! I would have thought that working to a high standard was the very essence of model engineering.

As a beginner I avidly study projects like Graham’s. Some of them are indeed beyond my skill level at the minute but that only spurs me on. I can try some bits of projects and as a result can do a lot more today than I could this time last year. There are skills like gear-cutting that I may never get to but in the projects that I can attempt, I would rather aim at the levels that Graham Meek exhibits in his work than settle for mediocrity. I suspect that I am not alone in this.

Graham, I have followed this thread with great interest because I have tried to improve a similar sharpening jig myself with fair success. The offset mechanism you suggested was new to me. One question if I may? The offset you give would depend on the measurements of the eccentric adjuster. You did not add the measurements of this piece to the drawing you posted. Any chance that you could give them?

Thanks for a most interesting post


Edited By Falco on 13/05/2014 00:20:20

Thread: Drill grinding jig design
23/04/2014 23:00:50

Not wishing to hijack the thread but I have been struggling to come up with a jig to sharpen a bunch of larger drills ie. 20 - 38mm that I have been given.

Has anyone found a simple jig to deal with these sizes on a bench grinder? I don't have anything fancier! I have found a few designs, one in MEW way back but when I tried to print it out the quality of download was so crap I found it hard to read.

Any suggestions please? PM would be great, if you feel this is OT.


23/04/2014 22:44:43

I have the silver /grey version of the above jig. It has the angled stem.

After initial fettling it now does a very acceptable job on drills from 3mm to about a max of 19mm. I found the following mods turned it into a very useful addition to the workshop.

I first made Harold Hall's 180 deg. drill holder modification and I can vouch for its effectiveness. The original sliding lip stop on the jig does not give repeatable results and causes only frustration.

Secondly I made a sliding base with a fine screw-in feed. A version of this was shown in MEW some time back. Well worth the effort!

The main stem is held in a v-slot by a piece of rubbery metal and two screws. Find a piece of flat spring in your scrap box to replace the original metal retainer. I also ran an end-mill down the vee and converted it into a half round and it gave the stem a much snugger fit. It does not wobble now.

I lengthened the square bar in the body of the jig by welding a similar sized square bar from a door lock to it. That greatly increase the capacity of the jig.

On this jig it is crucial to have the cutting lip of the drill vertical in the holder for sharpening. Once set, Harold's 180 deg. attachment takes care of the second lip.

As regards the length of drill protruding from the jig, the theory is heavy going, but I have got very good results by having the drill protrude the same amount as the diameter of the drill being sharpened, ie. 6mm for a 6mm drill or 12mm for a 12mm drill. (You could experiment with slightly less to get a smaller relief angle.)

Lastly, whenever I do get it wrong, it usually comes down to one of three user errors. 1. Drill lip not set vertical. 2. Drill not snugly seated in the V of the jig. 3. Drill protruding too much/little.


Edited By Falco on 23/04/2014 22:46:48

Thread: New Mill
02/02/2014 20:56:02

Steve ,

To remove the head, wind it all the way down to rest on a timber block on the table. You can then loosen the bolts slightly, rotate it, rest it on it's side, remove the bolts and lift it off. It is a heavy lump on its own so have a clear passage to the bench.

BTW you don't have a bike lift that you could use to raise it on to the plinth?

Nice looking Norton Steve!


30/01/2014 22:56:21

Hi Steve,

I have the same mill, bought from Amadeal several years ago. It has given good service and to date no real problems. I bought a spare set of plastic gears for the head as I read in several places that they can strip under heavy pressure. I'm still on the original set despite a few beginner's mistakes.

I found the construction to be simple, solid and functional. I would concur with the advice that you strip, clean and reassemble as there can be a lot of crud hidden inside from manufacture. The table works a whole lot smoother if you thoroughly clean and re-grease the lead-screws. I found that there was no means of controlling end-float on these but it was not excessive from new. I tried putting a slit in the nut and a screw to adjust it but it was only partly successful as it is nearly impossible to adjust when the whole thing is reassembled.

There was to my mind excess sloppiness in the fine feed mechanism on the head. I suggest you check yours in the early stages to satisfy yourself that it is acceptable.

I fitted a down-feed stop to mine I find it useful even with the digital readout on the spindle.

Carl's advice on Harold Hall's book is worth heeding. I found the no.1 requirement was clamping and holding accessories and he has useful plans for some of those.

Also make sure it is solidly bolted down to a good heavy bench. It makes quite a difference to smoothing out vibration under working loads........and ....count fingers before and after p

Good luck with the mill.


Thread: Re-starting after a number off years
17/01/2014 23:14:35

Hi Jim,

That's a fine job you've done on the house. Not sure about the workshop though. Way too neat and tidy. You couldn't possibly work in there. Time you got a bit of swarf on the floorlaugh.

Seriously, I hope you enjoy many happy evenings in there.


Thread: Identify an unmarked bottle of acid
13/01/2014 22:31:57

Since acid burns have no great appeal I'll reluctantly go with dilution or neutralization. It will leave me feeling a bit defeated though because I will learn little from the exercise.

I wish my chemistry teacher had been a little like Danny M's. I would have lapped it up and learned a lot more! Anything with a whiff of danger surely does grab the attention. What a shame that science and maths are not taught with a bit more imagination in school, but that is another debate.

Thanks for all the good advice. Much appreciated.


12/01/2014 20:48:24

You have made me think twice about exploring my brown bottle!

I don't actually know if it is acid, now that the question has been put to me. There is no sign of rusting in the vicinity and I have not opened it in years. Having read the posts I may do so carefully and have a smell but after that ....well, old sayings about curiosity and cats or no-go areas for angels treading spring to mind.

It can be difficult for the terminally curious to leave things alone but Bob, your point about purchasing a small amount of a KNOWN substance if/when needed perfect sense. As I have no immediate use in mind and there were few suggestions of what could be done with it, I agree my workshop might be a safer place if I can neutralise it or otherwise dispose of it.

Thank you all for your good advice. I learned a lot from the replies.


11/01/2014 20:29:08

Being a hoarder, I have a large brown bottle of acid that came out of a school lab a good few years ago hidden in a dark place under my bench. It's most likely either Sulphuric or Hydrochloric since they generally didn't deal with anything more lethal on the school curriculum.

The problem is that there's no marking on the bottle, So I don't know which it might be.

Is there any easy way to test it. Maybe some members with a good chemical knowledge could advise please?

And then, when/if I do identify it, what would it be useful for in the workshop?


Magazine Locator

Want the latest issue of Model Engineer or Model Engineers' Workshop? Use our magazine locator links to find your nearest stockist!

Find Model Engineer & Model Engineers' Workshop

Latest Forum Posts
Support Our Partners
Meridenne Boat 2019
Eccentric Engineering
TRANSWAVE Converters
Eccentric July 5 2018
Allendale Electronics
Subscription Offer

Latest "For Sale" Ads
Latest "Wanted" Ads
Get In Touch!

Do you want to contact the Model Engineer and Model Engineers' Workshop team?

You can contact us by phone, mail or email about the magazines including becoming a contributor, submitting reader's letters or making queries about articles. You can also get in touch about this website, advertising or other general issues.

Click THIS LINK for full contact details.

For subscription issues please see THIS LINK.

Digital Back Issues

Social Media online

'Like' us on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter
 Twitter Logo

Pin us on Pinterest