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Member postings for JA

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

Thread: Cutting Oil
09/06/2020 08:31:28

Cast iron is machined dry since the carbon in the iron acts as a lubricant. Unlike steel it is not chemically combined with the iron. I suspect the zinc in brass may act as a lubricant (or may be it is just a weak material). When it comes to bronze a cutting fluid is certainly required.

I use the same cutting fluid, a neat cutting oil, for all metals except cast iron and brass. It works. Obviously I use a tapping paste when cutting a thread with a tap or die (again not on cast iron and brass).


Thread: Material for engine block.
08/06/2020 18:36:28

I doubt if a tapped 12BA. hole will last in aluminium. Can you use a plain hole with a nut and bolt? Always the best option but can be difficult to assemble. Otherwise look at using inserts, brass or better still steel. You will have to make your own out of bar. You should have no difficulty tapping 12BA into mild steel. I have yet to break a 12BA tap (I have destroyed a 12BA die but that is another story).


Thread: Die ing to know
06/06/2020 18:24:30

I cannot cut an M10 with a die, either holding the work in a vice or lathe chuck. I would not entertain doing the job under power. I would use the die as a chaser after cutting most of the thread with a single point tool.

I finished a 7/16”BSF thread in brass this way two hours ago.


Thread: Coronavirus
01/06/2020 13:40:58

If I was young again I would become an academic statistician. I would make a lot of money analysis infection and death rates during this virus for lots of governments so that they might be able to handle the next pandemic.

At present no government has a clue what is going on. The experts have no ideas and make it up as they go along. Politicians make fools of themselves and the media just stirs the pot.

I could go on, it does appear that society is ripe for revolution.


Neil, apologies, posted before I saw your recent posting. Delete this if you want.

Edited By JA on 01/06/2020 13:43:23

Thread: Machine Covers
01/06/2020 08:17:48

I use a plastic/fabric seat outdoor seat cover from a garden store for the milling machine. They come in all shapes and sizes and are used to protect outdoor furniture from the winter weather.

It has proved more durable than the Myford cover. Both have their disadvantages, the plastic Myford cover goes stiff after a time while the plastic skin of the seat cover starts to flake off after a few years.


Thread: Bird (feathered variety) expert(s) wanted.
31/05/2020 08:31:00

The nest box has been used this year by Blue Tits and they tolerated my presence. I spent an early morning trying to photograph them. One would approach the box from the end of a gutter four feet away. It stop that after almost being had by a Crow. Five days ago, while setting up silver soldering equipment (which is done outside), there were two fledglings who very rapidly disappeared into the bushes.


30/05/2020 12:55:05
Posted by Phil H1 on 30/05/2020 10:12:54:

Sorry to veer off a bit but a bird of prey (a bird with a sharp beak) landed on the neighbours fence a few weeks ago and just sat there as if he or she owned the place. It was about 1 foot tall, dark brown wings and a dark brown breast. I am sure it wasn't a buzzard.

Was it a sparrow hawk?

I live in the middle of a typical housing estate with fields about 200m away.

Phil H

Probably a Sparrow Hawk. A good reason to put up a bird feeder. I have a pair local me but only once has one used my bird feeder. It left the evidence on the snow below (a pile of feathers).


Thread: Workshop Gloves
30/05/2020 12:48:30

The only glove I use is a welder's glove on my left hand, either when I am silver soldering or holding something being "Dremmeled". Usually it is right handed because I cannot find the left hand glove.


Thread: Bird (feathered variety) expert(s) wanted.
29/05/2020 22:42:21

Blackbirds are very vocal, musical and loud. They can sing all day and when street lights are on.

No wonder they are a part of our culture.

I would put a lot of money on a Blackbird (probably a male).


ps. The Blackbird is a Thrush.

Edited By JA on 29/05/2020 22:43:30

Thread: How big can I go with a machine vice?
26/05/2020 08:42:24

Bigger is always better??

Bigger is always heavier. OK if you are never going to take the vice off the table.

Don't kid yourself that you can use a big vice for small work. Using a small vice for small work is much easier. Frequently I put a job in a small vice prior to putting it on the milling machine.


Edited By JA on 26/05/2020 08:43:01

Thread: The sneering detractors
23/05/2020 22:39:38
Posted by Mike Joseph on 23/05/2020 21:32:54:

Cheers all, am about to watch Arlo Guthrie's 'Alice's Restaurant'.

Keep mangling metal,


I thought it was an LP, from a long time ago. I could play it but I do not have a turntable.


Thread: Which Digital Compact Camera?
23/05/2020 18:25:17


I have stayed away from this thread since everyone has their own preferences.

I was in your position a year ago with a ten year old Nikon Coolpix pocket camera. I used to keep losing the horizon and I could not see the screen in bright sunlight. I looked at what was available and, not wanting a bridge camera or an SLR, went for a mirrorless camera with a couple of lenses. I bought from the local shop a Sony A6400 and it has done everything I wanted of it. It is quite complex but if you do more than point and shoot it is a great tool. It comes with editing software which I use (I cannot compare the software with Photoshop etc because I know nothing about them). It has re-awakened my interest in photography and I have even dug out a couple of old film cameras and bought some black and white film.

I still use the little Nikon, it is a good workshop camera.


Dave - you are not having my A6400.

Edited By JA on 23/05/2020 18:26:08

Thread: oxygen concentrators
23/05/2020 14:21:19

I think the economics of all supplied atmospheric gas is dominated by the steel industry. Vast amounts of oxygen are used in the conversion of iron to steel which can only be provided by liquefying air. All the other gases, mostly nitrogen and argon, are by-products.


Edited By JA on 23/05/2020 14:23:01

Edited By JA on 23/05/2020 14:24:29

Thread: Bumblebee behaviour
22/05/2020 17:41:54


How deep should the holes be?


Thread: First grandchild, which book?
18/05/2020 12:10:55

Being sensible - money, as Clive suggests.

Being silly -

duncan thom and young.jpg

You will need Mr Dull's book after the third page. It is also a better read than Neville Shute.


Thread: Aircraft General Discussion
17/05/2020 23:26:59


The tailplane anhedral is the give away. The nose seems to have grown a chin.


17/05/2020 23:15:10


I am glad to hear someone is moving towards normality although it sounds very bureaucratic.

Go carefully, I wish you every success coming out of shut down and I hope we all follow.



Plasma - F4 Phantom

Edited By JA on 17/05/2020 23:16:19

Thread: Fixing a ball to a govenor arm
11/05/2020 13:15:25

I worried about this on an engine I am making.

I bought some 5/16" diameter stainless steel balls last year at the Midland show, from Polly Engineering I think. I found that the balls could be touched by a file. After that it all became rather easy - I held a ball in a collet on the lathe and then drilled and tapped a 10BA hole. The arm obviously has a mating 10BA threaded end.


Thread: Crime rate
11/05/2020 09:04:41

A friend's son is a policeman and he reports that, locally, minor crime have dropped considerably. This is due to the closure of pubs, so not alcohol fuelled fights at closing time. One could say it has gone domestic.

I did get the impression that the police do not like trying to enforce the 2m separation rule.


Thread: Where do you put your chuck key?
10/05/2020 22:00:17

To reinforce Nick’s comment - If you not about to actually make a cut on a lathe, or milling machine, or to check the running speed, that big red button should be pushed fully in.

Most work alone in their workshops - What is going to happen to you if something goes very, very wrong?


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