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Member postings for Colin Heseltine

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

Thread: What mills have you had
21/07/2019 14:11:42

Many years ago (1973) I bought a Harrison L5 lathe, an Excel No. 2 surface grinder and an Excel Shaper from Cannock Tech. Swapped the shaper for a big Cincinnatti No. 2 Vertical Mill which my dad did a lot of work on. Eventually got sold when my father moved house.

I then bought one of the small Proxxon BF40E mills which I used for making dolls house furniture. I then added a Chester Super Lux, followed by a Cowells vertical mill, an Aciera F12 and a BCA Mk3 jig borer. Just swapped the Super Lux for a Gates PBM2000 (Bridgeport clone). So far I have found the PBM2000 very nice to use especially having the knee and powerfeed on X & Y and power drawbar. Will soon have a power feed on the knee.

Hopefully will be able to start using it all when retire at end of this month (69).

Thread: Wood in small (or large) amounts
18/07/2019 18:05:02

I was not aware that Basswood is the American name for Lime. I recently purchase block of Basswood to make some patterns. It was lovely to carve and sand to shape.


The two patterns I carved as shown above.


Thread: TTFN
18/07/2019 17:59:32


I must add myself to the list of members who are hoping you will reconsider.

I thoroughly enjoy reading your exploits as you make your traction engines (large engines need large machines). How you manage to find the time for the workshop, household/family chores, gliding/gliding club chores, etc. and achieve what you do amazes me.

I hope we will continue to see your input regarding your workshop time and also your input to the problem/issues/questions that others raise.


Thread: What Did You Do Today 2019
16/07/2019 20:15:30

Basswood is a fine grained wood which is lovely to carve and has a fine grain. Blocks of this are available from places such as hobbycraft.

I have recently used it to make a couple of patterns which go off to the foundry to make some parts for my Excel Die Grinder.



Thread: What started your interest?
16/07/2019 12:33:53

My father was a senior engineer at Cincinnatti Milling Machines in Birmingham and did all own work on cars etc. My grandparents had a Myford ML2 which was my mothers brothers (he died in around 1941) which I obtained in my late teens (IIRC). I was helping a friend with his R3 class Hydroplane and a guy who used to do machining on propshafts etc had a phenomenal workshop with lathes and mills and all painted white and clean. I decided then and there to have a similarly equipped workshop. Old equipment from Cannock Tech College followed (lathe, shaper and surface grinder). and went on from there. The old Cannock equipment has now all gone and been replaced over the years. As finally decided to retire in 2 weeks (at 69) hopefuly I can now find time to use it.


Thread: Excel Die Filer
04/07/2019 22:09:36

I mentioned progress might be slow due to having to fit new shock absorbers to Caterham 7. Well I got them fitted and had a nice weekend driving round the Yorkshire Dales. Got back and couple of days later went to get the car flat-floored (all suspension set up properly. All set up ready to adjust rear shock platforms and found this.

img_5254.jpgShocker had ripped rear mount out of De Dion tube. Not deemed safe to weld as could be too much corrosion inside, so now need to fit this.


So Die Filer project slowed down even further.


Thread: Do you clean your workshop at the end of the day?
29/06/2019 17:40:59

I tend to brush and vacuum the floor several times a day. Not so much for tidyness although I like to be tidy, but to prevent the cats getting swarf in their paws. Also to try and prevent it getting in the house/carpets.


Thread: Is CAD for Me?
27/06/2019 14:58:25


I know you have lost heart but are you aware that there is a full copy of the MEW course available to load as pdf file from the Alibre site. I believe you should have had a link to it when you had the trial version. This is significantly easier to follow as all the Alibre screen prints are a size where they can be easily read, rather than the magnifying glass I had to use for the screen prints in MEW.


Thread: What Did You Do Today 2019
18/06/2019 17:04:49

Fitted new Nitron shock absorbers and matching springs to my Caterham 7. Although it was built (by me) in 1997 all the bolts came out a dream. The Copperslip had worked its magic. Cleaned up bolts, fresh Copperslip, and loctite as appropriate and hopefully will last another 22 years. Whether i will still have a licence and can drive it then (at 91) remains to be seen, or even if petrol will still be available.


Thread: Machine Movers
17/06/2019 17:39:02

A few eeeks ago I used Paul from K M Jackson (Machinery Removals and Installation) who are based in LIchfield, Staffordshire. He has a flatbed truck with a 4 ton HIAB. Paul can be contacted on 07894 541002.

He moved a Gates PBM-2000 (bridgeport clone) for me.


Thread: Excel Die Filer
17/06/2019 17:30:16

Ordered a replacement Capacitor from Fleabay and it arrived today. 5 minute job to install and very pleased that I now have a fully operative Dremel belt sander.


13/06/2019 17:43:10

Thanks to all the help I have now drawn up plans for the arms:


Started with some nice Basswood


Found these twins inside.


Just need to make the pattern for the boss which hold the upright for the arms, get them painted and off to the foundry.

This might be a couple of weeks as have a set of new Nitron race shock absorbers and springs to fit to the Caterham seven before week on Thursday.

Whilst making them my Dremel Motosander 1731 (1" belt sander) went pop. Could hear a slight hum from the motor but that was it.

After my issues with my old mill I though immediately "the Capacitor". Open its case and see below:


It says 6 microfarad.  This seems a bit low.  Any thoughts.


Edited By Colin Heseltine on 13/06/2019 17:45:15

Thread: Electricity Supply
08/06/2019 20:59:38

That's all very well but this would be a major issue for families where I live. We do not have a local bus service so need cars to get around. I have 3-phase so could provide enough power to charge multiple vehicles. My daughters have left home but needed cars to get to work when they were at home. I can see people having to get up in the middle of the night to shuffle cars around to get them charged.

I am almost glad I am shutting my business down in the two months and will not be travelling around the UK as much. I think the way the country is going with speed restrictions, speed cameras, no space to park, etc. we might as well go back to the horse. Its going to be just as quick.


08/06/2019 20:25:08

You are all implying that there is no problem getting a single vehicle charged overnight. What about the number of families who have 3 or more cars. i.e. spouse and children all of who may well have to travel long distances for their jobs. How will they all get their vehicles charged up ready to use next morning.


Thread: Is CAD for Me?
07/06/2019 23:02:12


I feel your pain regarding Turbocad 3D drawing. I bought Turbocad several years ago and have been unable to get to grips with it. Having recently bought a 3D printer I want to be able to draw things up that I can print. I worked through the exercise in MEW but struggled a bit due to the size of the pictures in the article. I am red/green colourblind and this has caused a few issues not being able to see the colours of fine lines. Once I found I could increase the line widths I found things quite a bit easier. I found the concepts easier to grasp in Alibre than in Turbocad, especially selecting facets. I feel that with some practice it will become easier. I think it is more intuitive than TC.

I intend to work through the exercise again using the larger pictures in the .pdf rather than a large magnifying glass to read pictures in the mag, this was one of the things which slowed me down. I will also work through exercise on the web site.

I decided to bite the bullet and purchase a licence.

Baz's suggestion that MEW run other articles on Alibre 3D certainly would certainly appeal to me.


Thread: Sanderson Beam Engine
07/06/2019 20:51:42

I also have the castings for this engine. I need to get some practice in on my new mill with a couple of other engines before attempting to butcher the castings. Do you intend to do a build log. If so I will be following with great interest.

I have the plans and the full set of magazines with Stan Brays build in them. I am not aware of any other build logs.


Thread: Quicksilver
04/06/2019 17:41:04

This is an interesting thread. I remember playing with mercury as a kid. I had obtained a small bottle of it from somewhere. Use to run it round palm of hand and across desks etc. I lost it somewhere in my parents house. I've just found an old Twaddell's Hydrometer No. 1 which has a glass bulb of mercury in the bottom. I think I've had it lying around for at least 50 years. And the more I think of it somewhere I have some glass tilt switches with mercury in them.


Thread: What Did You Do Today 2019
03/06/2019 16:45:40

Finished making 14 'T' nuts to fit Gate PBM-2000 (Bridgeport clone).

7 with M12 threads so as to use the clamp kit from previous mill.

4 with M8 and 3 with M6 threads for holding any other bits.


Thread: Hi from Staffordshire
01/06/2019 16:52:32

And if I remember correctly our esteemed editor is not too far away either.


Thread: Just for the Record
01/06/2019 09:55:38

That chuck looks like the same one as Cowells supplied for the ME90 lathe. I have one on my Cowells lathe.


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