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Member postings for Roderick Jenkins

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

Thread: Hardening gauge plate (O1)
28/09/2021 09:07:52

Gauge plate is sold as "non-distorting" and is mainly aimed at making jigs and fixtures. The slower rate of quenching in oil stops the distortion but limits the ultimate hardness. So, quenching into water gives a harder result but at the risk of distortion, And, of course, harder means more brittle so some tempering will be needed to give the required properties. I've made acceptable blades for wood planes out of water hardened gauge plate.


Thread: Wild life, bird watching and photography
09/09/2021 22:09:00


I think the dragonfly pic is extraordinary, I've never managed anything approaching acceptable. Thanks for the dot sight link, very interesting.


09/09/2021 13:58:56

We've been mostly chasing butterflies this year:

Pearl Bordered Fritillary

pearl bordered fritillary 1 lr.jpg

Silver Studded Blue

silver studded blue lr.jpg

Purple Hairsteak

a purple hairstreak 3 lr.jpg

This chap spent last winter on our local marsh - Glossy Ibis

glossy ibis lr.jpg

It's nice to get out from the workshop from time to time - looking for wildlife gives a bit of a focus about where to go.


Thread: Today's mystery Maker's Mark
07/09/2021 22:51:26

I thought the shape of that locking handle looked familiar:

ball head 1.jpg

ball head 2.jpg

ball head 3.jpg

It is paired with a Linhof tripod that my parents had, probably from the early '60s.

Stay well,


Thread: Governor drive belt
04/09/2021 20:57:04
Posted by Garry Coles on 04/09/2021 17:24:18:

OK, thanks, will try some of the glues mentioned. I was just a bit concerned that the glues would be a bit stiff to go around the governor pulley because it's only 1/2 in diameter.


Which is why I went for the butt join rather than a scarf (as well as being easier cool) though I guess that leather might tend to wick a thin glue which would tend to stiffen up the joint area. A gel type glue might be better.


04/09/2021 14:21:06

The drive belt for the fan on my Farm Boy is made from 1.8 mm O ring material joined with a simple butt join glued with a generic cyanoacrelate (super glue). I've been very pleasantly surprised how robust the belt is, so a simple glued butt join may well be worth a try.



27/08/2021 11:25:37

Mostly a difference between US and UK terminology I think.


Thread: Sherline lathe
21/08/2021 12:40:34

I bought a high speed pulley set for my Denford/Sherline mill recently from Millhill. They were pleasant and efficient to deal with over the phone.


Thread: cutting spur gears on a mill
20/08/2021 10:42:53
Posted by Martin Connelly on 20/08/2021 08:36:56:

Anyone who has ever cut gears will know that there is great satisfaction in it because it is not a quick and easy process however it is done and there are no simple shortcuts.

I couldn't agree more with Martin and Andrew smiley


Thread: Converting fractions to decimals
17/08/2021 09:50:59

For workshop use I like to use a calculator like this **LINK**

You can select the number of decimal places displayed and round the last figure. Normally I am calculating mm to thous so I divide by 25.4 and the answer is displayed to three decimal places - the nearest thou.


Thread: Consequences of Machining Cast Iron
14/08/2021 12:21:21

Our kitchen sink is black cool

Serendipity, the previous owner of the house did a makeover. I also have a dedicated dark handwash towel.


Thread: What Did You Do Today 2021
14/08/2021 09:51:37


The jaws were advertised in ME back in July 1987 together with a puff article in the editorial:

hex soft jaws.jpg

As you suggest, the chuck jaw would be easy to make from a standard soft jaw. The slots in my hexagons are 1/8" and the jaws fit a 4" Burnerd. The company still appears to exist but I made no enquiries about replacement hexes.



Thread: Beam Engine - where to start?
11/08/2021 14:58:02

Thank you all for the input. The consensus seems to be to start with the bedplate and work my way up.

Andrew, I have actually started with the governor drive gears- mostly as a test of my fading intellect(?) to understand the manufacture of parallel depth bevel gears:

sanderson gears.jpg

They will need some trimming

Tug, the castings are all bronze so the Swarfega can stay in the tub.

I do have the "build log" by Stan Bray and, frankly, whatever qualities Mr Bray has as a journalist, I am less impressed the quality of the work he showcased in ME.

Cheers guys,


11/08/2021 11:16:58

Hi Folks,

I've got the castings:


and I've got the drawings. My experience of steam engines is pretty much limited to a 10V made 30+ years ago.. The question is - where should I start? Base? Cylinder? Beam? Column? Crankshaft? Or what?

Advice please.


Thread: What Did You Do Today 2021
11/08/2021 11:03:35

My soft jaws have run out of space:

soft jaws 1.jpg

Spent the afternoon making some new tops

soft jaws 2.jpg

soft jaws 3.jpg

Ready for action

soft jaws 4.jpg



Thread: Painting Brass and Bronze
30/07/2021 18:52:55

The paint is already chipping off some of the brass bits on my Farm Boy. I used Halfords etch primer but this does not seem to be adequate for brass. Clear brass lacquers seem to stick ok. Would this make a good primer? Any recommendations of good technique and materials for brass would be welcome.



Thread: The Workshop Progress Thread 2021
29/07/2021 17:21:54

Finished my air cooled version of the Farm Boy hit and miss engine

fb final 1.jpg

fb final 4.jpg

fb final 3.jpg


Thread: Garmin sat nav
19/07/2021 17:09:31
Posted by Nicholas Farr on 19/07/2021 16:14:51:

Hi Hans, I guess they must transmit your position, otherwise how would it be able to tell when you reach junctions etc? and give you the next instruction and tell you when you have reached your destination

I dont think so. The GPS system knows where it is on the digital map. It then calculates where you are and distances to the next nav point. My Garmin receives traffic data as an FM signal (Traffic Message Channel) through the special cigarette lighter charging lead. A two way system would probably involve mobile telephony and a sim card, which would involve an annual charge like on most modern cards.


Thread: Gear Train Calculator
19/07/2021 16:07:22


I applaud your effort, particular the fact that your program is completely stand alone and platform independent. I would caution against trying to make your program too universal. My own attempt written in visual basic in Excel is specifically focused on my own particular needs to calculate long leads on a Myford S7 with add on gear box, metric conversion set and loads of change gears. Too specialised, I suggest.

excel change.jpg

My advice would be to add another pair of gears like Hairy Pete has since most lathes can accommodate this. The option to select 4 or 6 gear trains would be good but clearly six gears gives a better chance of a closer result to the desired pitch so if a 4 gear train won't get close enough then a six gear train is worth a try. I suspect specifying the order of the gears is going to be too difficult since there are so many variations in banjo size and configuration. Letting the user know which are the drivers and which are driven is probably the best you can do. The user can work out which to put where on their own particular lathe. Give the user some options with a list of results since lesser accuracy may be acceptable if the better result won't mesh. I hope these thought are some use.



Thread: Template for Cutter Teeth Indexing Table : Patent
16/07/2021 15:10:01

My dad worked for the ministry and had a couple of spin off patents which would have been held his employer. However, certainly in the 60s anyway, the US insisted that patents were filed by individuals. What's more, every patent filed earned a fee of 1$. My dad got a postal order for 6s 8d through the post (3 dollars to the pound in those days).


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