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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: Silver soldering zinc plated steel
20/03/2020 15:43:00

Hi Rowan

Best to strip it off, the zinc burns off with nasty white fumes that do you no good at all, concrete cleaner does a good job of getting zinc plating off, or some drain cleaners that contain Hydrochloric acid.

I believe there is a condition called metal fume fever that breathing in zinc smoke brings on, sounds unpleasant!

Stay Safe


Thread: Mod to M Type Myford lathe traverse handle.
19/03/2020 08:31:18

Very nice work David. it's so good to see one of these fine lathes in such good condition, well looked after and most importantly being used as it should. This modification is well designed, looks like it's meant to be there, both yourself, for the excellent workmanship and Geoff,for his clever design work deserve a pat on the back.


Thread: Slip gauges - dealing with patches of rust
16/03/2020 13:12:15

I was given an old set of slips, unfortunately poorly stored so quite rusty in some places, I soaked them in citric acid for a few days which got rid of the rust, left it with an overall grey colour then went over them with fine scotchbrite and WD40.

Still pitted but the pits are below the working surface and the rust has all gone , they are good enough for anything I'm likely to do, I find them very useful, just used them to set up loco slidebars, maybe if they were pristine I might be more reluctant to use them!


My workshop is definitely not temperature controlled!

Thread: Myford Super7 Valuation help
13/03/2020 14:06:13


Tony at will advise on pricing if you advertise on his website, he does charge for the advert ( around £40 ish from memory) we found his services very useful when we cleared a deceased friends workshop last year.

Send some clear photo's of the machine , and all the accessories, then give him a ring to discuss the advert, he will identify what is there for you, and word the advert accordingly. I have sold a couple of machines on his site after giving up on the scammers and time wasters on ebay, it proved painless and easier than I expected.



Thread: New chinese lathe or old Myford lathe
13/03/2020 08:13:31

A few years ago the company I work for decided to set up a small satellite workshop, to avoid travel back to the main buildings when machining jobs have to be carried out. when asked I specified a used Colchester student and a Bridgeport were the things to buy.

However against all my protestations and forecasts of doom they refused to buy used machinery and bought a Warco lathe which I think is a GH1322 and a Warco Bridgeport clone mill. Four or five years on and having used both quite intensively, probably 10 -15 hours a week on each machine, lots of screwcutting, often stretching the capacity to it's limit, and usually with someone continually asking how long am I going to be. I can say that I have been more than impressed with both machines, they are accurate and very convenient to use and show no signs of any premature wear or distress.

The Colchester's we have are obviously better finished, but it must be borne in mind that the cost when originally purchased was huge, far out of the range of most home workshop owners. If my Colchester Bantam ( which I love) at home was to disappear overnight I would definitely consider something like the Warco as a replacement.

Just my thoughts as a ( initially reluctant) user


Thread: Cheap drill bit sets
09/03/2020 15:39:55

I recently bought a set of ARC Euro split point TIN coated drills 1-6mm , so pleased with them I bought a set of the 6-10mm equally happy with them. Not the cheapest but accurate and seem to be lasting well.

Also found the ground finish drill sets from Chronos are very good value, accurate and last well.

I ordered some Presto branded drill sets( in blue plastic boxes) for work and was very dissapointed , don't know where they were made, but I bet it wasn't Sheffield , some had to be sharpened before they would cut to size, and a few so brittle they broke, didn't go down well at all!



Edited By Dave Wootton on 09/03/2020 15:40:50

Thread: Small milling machine
24/02/2020 08:18:57

Just my tuppenceworth, don't shout at me if you don't agree, but I've worked with mills and lathes most of my working life, and have owned a few in my home workshop, used for everything from classic bike restoration and 5" gauge to gauge 1.

I have a Tom Senior which is a well made machine, and I use it mostly as a horizontal which it's great at, with the standard vertical head I find it most frustrating due to the limited headroom. In fact the only time I use the vertical head is at 90 deg to the table used like a boring machine, I also find the cross travel on the y axis a bit restrictive, I wouldn't like to have it as my only mill.

I also have a Myford VME ( also known as the A-1S) which is like a beefed up VMC, this is very versatile and robust, for it's size, and I have no plans to replace it, does have frustrating gaps in the speed range, which as I'm retiring soon I hope to have time to cure with a poly V conversion and inverter drive. It's also R8 taper which I find very convenient, I don't like the Morse tapers in the Senior. It does take up a fair amount of space.

The one I regret selling was a Centec 2B which for it's size was a great little mill, robust and accurate.

Never used one or seen one but the Sieg SX3 looks to be a sturdy machine I like the dovetailed column and R8 Spindle, A friend has a similar looking thing from Amadeal and he is very pleased with it and turns out all sorts on it.

The above is just a few opinions on owning and using them which I thought might be helpful, I don't want to start a war over British versus Chinese, At the end of the day the choice of mill depends on the type of work carried out, no use buying a mini mill if you are working on a full size locomotive!


Thread: Purchasing an unknown build
19/02/2020 10:26:33

Hi Lainchy

I'm no expert but I think LBSC's Juliet was one of his designs that came with variations of valve gear types, slip eccentric or Stephenson's. If it is slip eccentric that would account for the lack of reverser in the cab ( you push it along half a turn to set the eccentrics for the direction of travel)

I actually looked on Station Road Steam's site this morning, normally I stay away after a really beautiful 5" gauge LMS Crab on there gave me sleepless nights and thoughts of bank robbery or other crimes in order to buy it!, and there are a few 31/2" gauge loco's on there, including a Rob Roy in the rolling restoration section.

My first loco build, has been the source of lot's of enjoyment over the years, now needs a rebuild and repaint, would never part with it, faults and all. Good luck in your search.


Agree with Old Al's post if possible join a club, there is a wealth of knowledge and help available, you will make some good friends too. 

Edited By Dave Wootton on 19/02/2020 10:31:42

19/02/2020 09:36:39

Hi Andy

I would second everything that has been said warning against buying a loco without a current valid boiler certificate, a couple of years ago a club member bought a " Doris" from an ebay trader. The impression given in the advert was of a model that had only fallen into disuse due to the ill health of the builder, who was a close friend of the vendor who has seen the model run on many occasions.

Turns out he had bought it at auction a few weeks before ( the sale details were still online) , basically the thing was a disaster, firebox crown collapsed, soft soldered foundation ring, driving wheels loose on axles, the poor boiler inspector nearly fainted! After some pressure the vendor accepted a return and a refund was given under ebay rules.

After some gentle nudging he bought a Butch in 5" gauge from Station Road Steam, came with full certificate and a 3 month warranty, I drove him up top collect it and the people at Station Road couldn't have been more helpful.

Sadly he died suddenly about a year after, but did have lot's of fun with the loco and was very pleased with it.

With hindsight the original ebay advert was very carefully and craftily worded, not so much what was put in but what was left out, incidentally the loco was back on ebay before it had even been sent back to the seller!

Hope this helps


Thread: Noisy Lathe Gearbox
05/02/2020 12:24:56

Hi Geoff

I used to have a very old Colchester Student roundhead that was very worn and was horribly noisy( but very,very cheap!) I ran it on thicker oil. I can't remember what grade, but in a cold workshop it wouldn't pull the top speeds until it warmed up a bit. It did quieten it down quite a bit, before I had to wear ear defenders on the top speeds, it was bearable after.

I sold it to a friend ( even cheaper!) some twenty odd years ago who still uses it regularly, and I know he has never changed the oil since, or even cleaned it properly. Not advocating such practice but it's still going strong after many years use.

It is worth checking the suitability of your EP oil with any bronze or brass bushes, some makes do contain something that can degrade bronzes. There have been problems with Vintage vehicle gearboxes, I seem to recall reading that it's been superseded by synthetic replacement that no longer causes problems. Probably worth a Google search.

Hope this is of help


Thread: Cenetc 2A Horizontal Arbor
25/01/2020 03:03:05

To avoid too much bashing and possible bearing damage, you could try fitting a piece of tube, old scaffold pole or gas barrel, over the arbour as a spacer then use the nut that secures the cutter on the end of the arbour to form a sort of extractor.

By using the spacer and arbour nut to push against the face of the spindle, hopefully it should exert a straight and even pull on the arbour to help break the taper and not put any strain on the bearings.

Thinking about it you could use a combination of the existing arbour spacers, thick washer and a short piece of tube, as long as it clears the morse taper and abuts on the spindle face it should serve, Threaded pipe fittings can be a useful source of tube for spacers, cheap, easily available in a range of sizes, might need to face both ends first.

Good Luck!


Thread: Can we have a really clear distinction between Silver Soldering and Brazing
22/01/2020 20:03:24

Thanks for explaining the difference between brazing and bronze welding Stueee, had a look on Youtube very inspiring. I've used bronze welding a lot on classic British bikes, I'm working on a Norton twin at the moment, seems to resist the vibration better than my welding!

I had an interesting call from a friend who is a great fund of knowledge on matters classic and vintage motorcycle, who had seen the thread. He believes the term bronze welding came around almost as a trade name, and was used to differentiate between the old hearth brazed lugged frames and parts and the more modern ( at the time ) bronze welded frames. an early form of spin?


21/01/2020 07:59:58

Just to add to the confusion where I served my time brazing was referred to as bronze welding!, was this a regional thing or is there a difference between bronze welding and brazing?

I have seen brazing done with brass rod and a gas/air torch allowing the filler to flow into the joint, much as silver soldering, but we always used oxy/ acetylene and built up a fillet. There was great pride amongst the fabricators in a neat and even fillet, I only got a few months in the fabrication shop and sadly never achieved anything like perfection!

This is not a facetious post, I have often wondered about the difference, As an aside on a recent visit to the National Motorcycle Museum I was fascinated by the beautiful bronze welding on the racing bike frames, something to aspire to. Well worth a visit.


Thread: Bottled Gas Suppliers
12/01/2020 18:35:35

Hi Andrew

You are quite right, oxy propane does not get as hot at oxy acetylene, I have found it ok for riveting, flanging and bending, but not gas welding, I have never tried cutting so can't comment.

I do a fair amount of bronze welding at times and have found that I cannot get a nice even fillet with oxy propane, might just be me, but the heat zone does not seem as controllable, perhaps diffused would be the correct term.

I was also disappointed to find my very useful pepperpot heating nozzle does not work with propane, never thought of the fact that more oxygen would be used with propane to get the heat output, now I have smaller bottles I seem to be more conscious of how much gas I'm using, the cheapskate in me again!

Air Liquide sound as awful to deal with as BOC used to be, good Luck.


Thread: Sent lathe back
10/01/2020 19:30:58


Have you considered a Hobbymat if you are looking at a small machine, never used one but I know someone who has been using ( and abusing) his since the80's, mainly on projects I would consider far too big and heavy for it with seemingly no problems or harm.

So they must be tough little things, not sure if they are still made, but there should be a few about secondhand, there's one on the website at the moment.


Thread: Bottled Gas Suppliers
10/01/2020 14:47:35

Hi Andrew

I use Hobbyweld for oxygen and acetylene, have had no problems at all and have been using them for a couple of years, I also use Adams gas for pure argon, but I think Adams are more restricted to the south east.

Neither stockist seem interested in how the cylinders are transported, I always ring a few days before collection, if the stockist has none in stock, they can get it in a couple of days, been very happy so far.

I changed a while ago whilst with BOC, when I realised how much I was spending a year on bottle rental for something that I only use once in a while. I also got caught up in the transport fiasco when I tried to collect from a depot.

As an aside I now use oxy- propane for many heating jobs a lot more to save on acetylene, bit of a cheapskate really!


Thread: 2-6-0 Horwich Crab
27/12/2019 11:55:30

Very nice job Stew, have been following your progress with interest, been building a 2 1/2" gauge Crab for a while, there's a picture in my album. on hold due to moving house and imminent redundancy and early retirement.

Hope to be able to get on with it soon, you have spurred me on to paint my (almost finished) tender, keep us posted with your further progress.

Keep up the good work.


Thread: Stevensons original collet blocks & Arc Euro 6" grinder
14/12/2019 18:03:54

Hi Chris

I'm not sure if there's a physical difference, size wise, between the Arc ones and the cheaper ones available on Ebay and the like. But having bought a few items from various Ebay sellers in the past and been very disappointed by the accuracy of some, I would say that everything I have ever bought from Arc has been well made and accurate.

As for the ball bearing nut I can't recommend these highly enough, ER collets have to be done up quite hard and the bearing makes it much easier and it feels more positive.

Can't help with the grinder though, only thing I will say is I recently bought an 8" grinder (old Wolf from the 60's) and if you have the space and can run to the extra cost it's worth considering the next size up, I find the slightly larger size makes it more convenient to use, especially sharpening the larger drills.

Hope this helps


Thread: Lathe lighting
06/12/2019 12:55:38

Hi Robin

I can't seem to post a picture of it, but I have a very similar light on my Colchester Bantam 2000, which looks about the same size as your lathe, it's just fixed in the back left corner of the splashguard.

These lights aren't too flexible, but it seems to get light into the right places without getting in the way, have put a picture in my album, which hopefully will illustrate what I'm going on about.

hope this helps


Thread: It's Myford Jim, but not as we know it!
26/11/2019 08:19:15

Sorry if I gave the impression in my above post that I thought RDG and Myford were the same vendors I got the gears from, they were of course entirely separate transactions. I just wanted to illustrate that expectations of quality differ between vendors, and of course reflect in the price paid.

Sadly as a long term Myford user I do believe not done it yet has hit the nail on the head in his post and that Nick and I did not just get a bad one out of the batch, but the QC is left to the customer.

In fairness I should say that other parts bought from Myford since the change of ownership have been fine, and hope this is a one off.


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