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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: Chester 836 Milling Machine
02/08/2019 11:41:53


Up in the Midlands near Lichfield. My wife has a very good friend who lives in Woodstock.


02/08/2019 11:05:01


My right shoulder is not good so the powerfeed on X and Y and particularly the power drawbar are a godsend.

Nice to have someone with the same machine.

Where are you located.


02/08/2019 10:20:27


Glad to see you have found a PBM-2000. Alain is very helpful. I m shortly going to get a power feed for the Z axis. This will save me problems with my shoulder.

Best Regards,


Thread: It's not engineering but
01/08/2019 21:08:11

Those all look very good. My father made many superb dolls house furniture items and had a number of articles published. We have several dolls houses and I have made furniture for several of them. I also had ago at something a bit different.




This is in a thatched country cottage dolls house.

Carving the trigger and barrel release were fun and then fitting them.

Best of luck to your wife with the furniture.


Thread: Chester 836 Milling Machine
01/08/2019 11:26:37


I see that the company I bought my Gate PBM-2000 from have a couple in at the moment. I do not know what you want to pay or where you are located but they are Tracey Machine Tools in Burntwood and the machines are £4250 (and i guess +VAT). I am sure he would be open to offers. I have no connection with them other than being a satisfied customer


Thread: Upgrading to fibre optic broadband
31/07/2019 12:18:13

I have my business broadband via BT. I have high speed broadband and the cab (FTTC - fibre to the cab) is about 150 metres from my home.

I am getting 71.38 Mb download and 17.57Mb upload. This is using

I am using my own router (Mikrotic) rather than the BT device. Because I am changing the broadband from my business name to personal name BT have just sent me a nice new BT Hub 6. Will use this whilst BB set up and then revert to the Mikrotic.


Thread: Chester 836 Milling Machine
30/07/2019 22:33:02

Amend 1st July to read 31st July. (Well spotted and Thanks NDIY). No idea how to edit a post.


Thread: Up and over door seal
30/07/2019 22:27:58

I stopped water ingress by grinding a narrow channel in the floor parallel to the back bottom edge of the door and inserting a metal strip (1/4" x 3/4" into the slot so it was proud of floor by 1/4". The door then sealed against this. It stopped a certain amount of wind and most of water unless torrential rain, in which case it was running like a river down the drive towards the house. Made it a bit awkward getting trolley jack over the lip but this was a small price to pay.


Thread: Muncaster's Simple Entablature Engine
30/07/2019 21:05:38


That looks very nice. Do you have any video showing how you produced the radius around the cylinder mounting on the base plate and then changed from external radius to internal radius's and achieved it all nicely flowing from one radius to the next. Or was this done on your CNC machine?


Thread: Chester 836 Milling Machine
30/07/2019 20:42:02

I thought I ought to respond as I started this thread. I looked at several of the Chester machines 836 and the 830VS as Chester are only a couple of miles from me. I also went to look at a local machinery dealer (well known to a colleague of mine) stock. I have to be honest that some of the final assembly on the Chester machines was I felt not up to a good standard. At the machinery dealers I looked at a number of Bridgeports in a range of conditions and also a few of the Bridgeport clones such as XYZ1500 and Acra. As we finished at the ones site he said he ahad another site a couple of miles away and had a excellent condition Gate PBM-2000. This a Taiwanese Bridgeport clone. My colleague had used Gate machines on and off for 20 plus years and said how good they were so we decided to go and have a look. One look and then on hearing it running a very quick decision was made. Buy it before anyone else did. It was immaculate. It was a 2008 machine but had never been used (or maybe only as a demo machine). Not a mark on the bed, some of the shipping grease was still on it, power feed to both X and Y, Power Drawbar, Automatic lubrication, 2 axis DRO, lighting, 3 phase, R8 spindle, Varispeed head.

He took my Chester Super Lux in Part ex, took my Excel Surface Grinder (had no space left for it), sorted out Imperial and Metric R8 collets, R8 keyed chuck, R8 keyless chuck. He said he would throw a vice in exchange for the Excel and a I went through his stock of vices and found a lovely Bison 155mm vice. (Result). The machinery removals company he used delivered the machine and put it in place and took my two machines away. A few days later I went back and collected a few more collets and adaptors.

Within a couple of hours the machine was up and running. All I have managed to do so far is make several batches of 'T' nuts so that I can utilise the clamping set that I used with the Chester mill. I have found having the knee is a revelation compared to winding down the quill.

All in all very happy with it and it will see me out, and best of all will not lose its value. I have since obtained a horizontal arbor for it and will be fitting 'Z' axis power feed.

As I am shutting my business down tomorrow (1st July) and retiring (age 69) then hopefully I can get to grips with the machine and start making stuff.


Thread: Amazing videos
25/07/2019 10:56:46

Absolutely staggering work. The detail is amazing. Would like to watch them all but I think that will take some time and put me off ever doing anything.


Thread: Learning CAD with Alibre Atom3D
22/07/2019 21:49:48

Just had email from Alibre about the 2019 update. Alibre Atom 3D appears to have found the update and installed it okay. Need to find time to play with it now.


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.


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