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Member postings for Dave Wootton

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

Thread: Lorch LAS lathe
08/07/2019 17:56:26

Hi Adam

Where I work we had about a dozen of these set up for various operations, now we are down to one, and on a countdown to closure.

Anyway I do remember our instrument fitter who looked after these small machines, taking apart the epicyclic backgear once, and regretting it, evidently a pig to put back together and get to run smoothly. So might be wise to leave it in one piece unless you have to strip it, You can remove the spindle and pulleys without disassembling the backgear. it's quite straightforward.

Very nice little machines perfect for steam fittings, I was hoping to get the one from work as a part of my redundancy package, but that looks unlikely at the moment.

I'm sure you will be pleased with it's performance.



Thread: Model Engineering Overseas
03/07/2019 11:58:24

Absolutely fascinating, I'm speechless with admiration for what was achieved in such circumstances.

Thread: Can We Be Too Good For Our Own Good - sometimes|?
22/06/2019 07:21:24

I used to be a refrigeration engineer, working for the manufacturer of large industrial chillers, not a bad job, but the one thing I hated was being on standby one in every five weeks.

One bank holiday Monday I got a call to go to a research establishment in Cambridgeshire, so had to drive from home in Sussex to the site, took nearly four hours in horrendous traffic. On arrival was shown to the machine, swarming with all the highly qualified technicians they could muster, who from their description had a good idea of what they were doing and had thoroughly checked everything. The machine was important in their research process and things were about to get critical.

Feeling under a bit of pressure now I thought I might as well see what was going on with it, so switched on the small rocker on/off switch on the control panel, watch it time itself out ( anti-recycle timers) whereupon it started bringing the compressors on line. On hearing the noise I was surrounded by a crowd asking "what did you do?". " just switched it on" I replied.

Red faces all round, the machine was controlled via a computer control system, so they had never used the switch or registered it's presence. We made up some feasible excuse on the job sheet to save their blushes and I headed home in the traffic, took me five hours to get home!. Never did find out who switched it off or why.

Just goes to show we can all get it very wrong sometimes!


Thread: Threading Problems on Colchester Student
17/06/2019 12:26:04

Hi Stephen

Had a similar problem some years ago trying to cut a metric thread on an imperial lathe, the lathe was in a maintenance shop, but somehow they forgot to maintain their own lathe!, from memory it was a very old Kerry.

Exactly the same thing occurred, I was reversing the machine at the end of each pass. when suddenly the thread flank became very thin scrapping the workpiece.

Turned out that reversing the drive to the saddle was causing the half nuts to open, but not enough to lose drive, this meant that the screwcutting drive was almost on the tips of the leadsrew and halfnut threads, because of the angle of the Acme thread leadscrew it was out of register enough to ruin the thread. A strip down and clean out of the apron cured it all, I think it was the first time it had ever seen an oil can. I think the general poor lubrication and the amount of swarf everywhere stiffened up the saddle movements possibly causing the problem.

Might be worth checking the endfloat on the saddle when the halfnuts are engaged before and after the saddle has been reversed a few times, just to compare. From memory it's not a horrendous job to remove a student saddle, you never know a drop of TLC might work wonders.

Hope this helps, good luck.


Thread: What to buy
27/05/2019 12:55:01


I really don't want to get into the Chinese versus British debate, but if you want a British built machine that's not too big or expensive, could I suggest you have a look at the Myford ML10.

I had a friend, now sadly long gone, who built a Rob Roy, several 21/2" gauge loco's and sundry Stuart engines on one, all in a tiny indoor workshop, they seem to be much cheaper than ML7/Super 7, and most of the accessories fit.

By their nature many of them have only been used in hobby workshops.

I was always very impressed with the little machine, I also know folk who turn out superb work on mini lathes, and people who turn out nothing at all in extremely well equipped workshops with every attachment known to man!

A lot depends on the bloke turning the handles!

Just a suggestion.


PS if you've got room Boxfords always seem a bargain to me.

Thread: Machine moving recommendations.
17/05/2019 14:56:23

Hi Youra

I sold my Boxford earlier in the year and it had to be moved from Folkestone to Halifax, the buyer arranged transport with Matt Smith of 1 tonne services, don't know the cost but he said he was very reasonable as he tries to combine trips to keep prices competitive.

I was very impressed with the care he took loading the machine, removing the splashguard to avoid damage, lifting the correct way with rods through the base, he rang me the night before to ensure he bought the right lifting and access equipment.

So although not a customer as such, I feel I can thoroughly recommend him, I used Landylift in the past both for my home workshop and at work, and feel that Matt takes the same care as Steve did.

His phone number is 07957 333097 and website hope this is helpful.


Thread: Bending cast gunmetal
10/02/2019 15:23:30

Hi Again Alan

I hadn't read Nigel's post above when I made mine, must have been typing at the same time. I hadn't thought of trying to cold bend cast gunmetal, so I just popped out to the workshop and tried a quick experiment.

I had a scrap gunmetal horn stay with a section of 3/16" x 5/8" stuck it in the vice and bent it ( with a hammer), it went to around 20- 25 deg with no apparent ill effects, at about 30 deg minute cracks appeared on the outside of the bend and it fell apart at about 45 deg., Not scientific at all, but I think it shows that minor corrections could be made without too much trouble without any heating.

I'm interested because I have some casings for my loco that need "adjustment" and was going to cut and silver solder, but it would be difficult to hold the parts together, so I will give the cold method a try. if they fall apart I won't be any worse off!


10/02/2019 14:30:14

Hi Alan

I have tried in the past heating Gunmetal castings to try and get them to the required shape, every time has ended in disaster!, the only way I have found is to cut the casing with a fine saw, let a piece of thin material in, silver solder, and try and file to the correct shape.

My current project a 5" Aspinall 0-6-0 suffers from some awful castings, so there has been a lot of letting in and silver soldering going on, I know I should return them, but I have given up on the supplier.


Thread: Milling on the ML7
23/12/2018 11:00:26

Hi Bill

From experience of building my first loco, a Simplex, using an ML7 and vertical slide, it's quite possible given a little patience to do all the milling for a fairly large loco entirely on a lathe and vertical slide combination. As I was on a very tight budget at the time with two young children, much of the drilling was done on the set up until I could get a pillar drill.

I used the fixed type slide, and various home made angle plates ( bits of scrap angle fly cut square on the cross slide!) combined with the Myford machine vice, things like connecting rods had to be fluted in two goes, but it's all achievable. I once visited the workshop of the late Bill Carter, who built two absolutely beautiful gold medal winning locomotives, with surprisingly limited equipment.

Obviously not as rigid or versatile as a milling machine, but it can be done and done well using a basic set up, my Simplex would never win any medals, but has given years of enjoyment, I've got a fairly well equipped workshop now, but it doesn't seem as much fun as my early efforts!

Many of the older copies of the M.E from the 50's to the late 70's were based around the lathe only workshop, so are well worth reading for ideas on set ups for all sorts of machining challenges. I'm sure you won't be disappointed if you go ahead with the Myford/ vertical slide idea. Hope the above waffle is helpful.

Happy Christmas


Thread: Hello from Dave in Sussex
02/02/2017 13:55:47

Thanks Neil

I couldn't work out how to put the picture into a post, so have started an album Dave W, and put a picture in there, not a very good one I'm afraid , will take some outdoors to give a bit better lighting, at the moment its tipping it down outside!

It is a pity that 2 1/2" gauge is a bit forgotten these days, the engines are cheap to build, easy to transport, and great fun to drive, there's quite an art to keeping the fire going, but rewarding when you get it right ( the push of shame if you get it wrong!). Although the wide firebox engines such as Flying Scotsman, Fayette, and Ayesha are a bit more manageable.

There's quite a bit more of the loco done than in the picture, just need to find time to put it together and build the boiler, which is easy to write but we all know how long that takes, BTW the strange bits sticking up from the steam chest covers are supports for the running boards, they still need milling off to the correct height.

Will post some more pictures as things (slowly) progress.


Thread: How to access advert contact details for new member
01/02/2017 13:39:51

Thanks Jason, much appreciated

It did work ok, but sadly the loco has long gone, I'll have to get on and start one from scratch!


Thread: Hello from Dave in Sussex
01/02/2017 13:02:08

Hi All

Having just made my first forum post, I thought I would say a quick hello, I've been a model engineer for longer than I care to remember. I have built a couple of loco's, got side tracked with old cars and motorcycles for a while, work also gets in the way a bit!.

Got a 21/2" gauge Crab to finish, mainly the boiler and some platework, then back to 5" gauge for the next project.

Workshop consists of a 5" Boxford AUD , Myford VME mill and Fobco drill and a Kennett grinder in the making.

All The Best


Thread: How to access advert contact details for new member
01/02/2017 07:18:03

Hi as a recent member I wanted to contact one of the advertisers in the classified section, with a part built Don Young Aspinall chassis for sale.

But I get a message telling me I have to make a number of posts on the forum before I can get the contact details ( I suppose this one helps!). I don't want to waste everyone's times with spurious posts, just to get my posting numbers up, Is there a way round this? can I ask a moderator for help?

I'm very new to forums, so any help or advice on the best way forward. would be much appreciated .

Best Regards


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