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What Material for 5C collet Rack

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Clive Foster20/08/2017 13:27:10
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So I'm about to expand my 5C collet collection to full x 1/64 th and x 0.5 mm ranges and need collet racks. Rack I have is 80 hole in some sort of plastic. Another would be fine but can't seem to find one.

All the commercial ones seem to be metal top. I don't like the idea of metal to metal contact so looking for suggestions as to suitable material for DIY.

Some sort of solid sheet plastic looks good but what can be got economically in an appropriate thickness and where from.

Clive.

Mike E.20/08/2017 13:37:46
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Get some plastic cutting boards, check out the Pound shops, Sainsbury, or similar shops.

Mark Rand20/08/2017 14:07:05
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I'm going to use 10mm aluminium sheet for the collet shelves in my Hardinge lathe cabinet because that's what I've got. But you could look for HDPE sheet on EBay, it seems to be available in sensible sizes at sensible prices.

Mike20/08/2017 15:17:56
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I am sure contributors who know much more about plastics than me will advise, but some plastics are acidic enough to cause rust over a long period. For instance, the plastic used for shotgun cartridge cases can cause the chambers of guns which don't have chromed bores to go rusty unless they are regularly cleaned.

Clive Foster20/08/2017 15:46:50
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No Pound Shop or full fat Sainsbury within 20 miles or so so hunting for cutting boards in person isn't practical. E-Bay shows 5 mm thick 35 x 23 cm plain white ones for around £2.50 a pop. Are these the same sort of thing? I know many of the inexpensive variety are flexible.

Current 80 hole rack is around 44 x 35 cm so two cutting boards per rack should work. A dedicated cabinet with two slide out shelf pattern drawers looks good way to go.

HPDE was on my list as a likely candidate but economy option would be to patchwork together from several pieces. Need to be pretty confident in material and thickness for that much effort.

Mike has highlighted my other big worry. Clearly plastic can be just fine as my current rack has lasted over 20 years with no ill effects on collets. Be nice to know if there are any to be avoided.

Thanks

Clive.

Brian Sweeting20/08/2017 16:08:53
442 forum posts
1 photos

I have a range of ER25 collets which I store in an ice-cube tray.

I then screwed it to the wall with a wedge to kick the bottom out.

Similar from web trader http://www.amazon.co.uk/Kitchen-Craft-Colourworks-Cube-Tray/dp/B004ZKUHEK

Edited By Brian Ess on 20/08/2017 16:12:37

John Haine20/08/2017 16:09:56
3333 forum posts
177 photos

6mm MDF. "Varnish" it with dilute PVA glue, allow to dry thoroughly.

JasonB20/08/2017 16:16:37
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Or 6mm melamine faced MDF so no need to varnish

Clive Foster20/08/2017 17:17:23
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Looks good Jason.

Clearly you have no problem with MDF dust.

I'd always believed that it's nearly impossible to eradicate all traces of semi-loose dust from the inside of holes in MDF. If this were so then with something like collet rack there would always be some risk picking up tiny traces when taking out and putting back. But Johns varnish with dilute PVA sounds an effective solution unless a real mess is made of the hole when cutting.

I guess those round cutters kitchen fitters use for hinge recesses et al do neater job than ordinary hole saws

Time to investigate the stash from the last kitchen re-fit methinks!

Clive

duncan webster20/08/2017 18:22:23
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Posted by Mike E. on 20/08/2017 13:37:46:

Get some plastic cutting boards, check out the Pound shops, Sainsbury, or similar shops.

+1, I get mine from IKEA, last ones were £1 a pop. They are UHMWP I think, so good for electrical insualtion as well.

JasonB20/08/2017 18:41:04
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Probably no harder to remove MDF dust than a bit of cast iron dust from the collet. Those holes were drilled with a cheap Fostner bit as I did not have a TCT hinge type cutter of the right size.

I work with MDF a lot for work and can work that all day without issues but an hour machining CI can give me black bogies yet I'm sure those on here who bemoan MDF don't say we should not be using cast iron.

If you do opt to PVA it then use a waterproof one otherwise it may come back to life when you put that collet back into its hole while wet with soluable oil.

Edited By JasonB on 20/08/2017 18:42:51

norman valentine20/08/2017 20:24:55
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"an hour machining CI can give me black bogies"

Yes Jason, and ten minutes using an angle grinder!

Neil Wyatt20/08/2017 20:39:14
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Posted by norman valentine on 20/08/2017 20:24:55:

"an hour machining CI can give me black bogies"

Yes Jason, and ten minutes using an angle grinder!

Just thought, I never get rusty bogies. Does that mean snot is a rust inhibitor?

Gray20/08/2017 21:01:25
1038 forum posts
13 photos

I made my racks from 6mm MDF, sealed with PVA and then painted with some leftover car aerosol from my old MG. Never have any problem with dust from the holes.

HughE21/08/2017 09:08:29
122 forum posts

Be careful a lot of plastics such as nylon 6.6 absorb moisture which is then released when the air dries out. I an drawer this then condenses on any colder metal object. Learnt from bitter experience.

Hugh

John Stevenson21/08/2017 09:54:16
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Clive,
I follow certain posters on this board and take them seriously, you are one of them.
But MDF dust from a preformed hole like Jason has shown?
I never took you down as OCD to any extent.
Jason outperforms most on here in terms of skill and output but doesn't seem to suffer the dust problem.
Would it be a problem to seal the hole with a wipe round the inside with a smear of petroleum jelly?
Neil Wyatt21/08/2017 09:59:26
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Posted by John Stevenson on 21/08/2017 09:54:16:

Would it be a problem to seal the hole with a wipe round the inside with a smear of petroleum jelly?

That might work on nostrils too...

Mike E.21/08/2017 10:23:50
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209 forum posts
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Another solution might be to get a cut off from a piece of PVC facia board or window sill, etc., from a local supplier.

If no supplier is nearby, you might be able to find what you need at the recycling centre in your area, or at a building site skip.

Clive Foster21/08/2017 14:15:24
2373 forum posts
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John

Wow. Thanks for the compliment.

Dust issue came from tea break comments when I was still working for RARDE / DERA / DRA / QinetiQ during chats about equipping a new optics lab (not mine). Bloke in charge of the work suggested storing pin mounted carriers upright in an MDF plate full of holes. Same sort of thing as we are talking about albeit smaller holes. A respected co-worker, whose opinion was generally at least good on most subjects advised against it, as he knew of someone at another establishment who had had dust problems with this approach. Not great but enough to be a right hassle in the context of an optical lab. These were ascribed to small particles being rubbed off the holes when things were removed and put back. MDF changed for delrin and problem gone. Bloke having the lab done at our place used delrin. Equivalents in my lab were made by the establishment woodwork shop before my time. Some sort of close grained hardwood, lovingly polished, stained and multiply varnished. Total overkill on the taxpayers money! Hopefully an apprentice product.

Obviously third or fourth hand info so limited reliability and no way for me knowing if its a real problem or just bad technique in that particular case. Generally MDF and I don't get on that well and I've always found it needful to put a bit of extra effort into ensuring things are dust free before painting.

Dust in the collet thread affecting engagement and similar recurring minor issues are the sort of irritation that really pushes my buttons. Big stuff cope just fine. Small stuff danger UXB!

OCD?

Um, lets see, he's getting full sets of imperial x 1/64 th and metric x 0.5 mm 5C collets together. Put that down as a tick in the maybe box then. Oh, and stick another one in the yes box under overkill to whilst the clipboard is out.

Clive.

JasonB21/08/2017 15:15:47
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Clive, can I ask what you do about fine cast iron dust or any small particles of swarf carried by cutting fluid?

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