|Garry Smith 7||17/09/2018 13:25:01|
|23 forum posts|
Hello all. I’m just starting out with a couple of small projects and I am using tubal Cain publications to make some small pot boilers and stationary engines to get a feel for the hobby. I do not have a metal lathe or a milling machine. If I were to buy a stationary engine kit with the raw castings is it possible to make the kit using hand tools alone.
|John Rudd||17/09/2018 16:08:33|
|1368 forum posts|
I would ask the kit supplier of your chosing, what tool requirements in order to complete a functional model.
Perhaps a 'ready machined kit' may be an option but may be expensive.
I would expect that a raw casting kit would need some machining during the construction..
17869 forum posts
It is possible, Tubal Cain did a version of one of the Stuart Engines by hand called "hand maiden" but a lot will depend on how proficient you are with hand tools, back in the day the likes of TC would have served a full apprenteship and probably spent 6months on learning how to file and fit parts to accurate fits.
|418 forum posts|
As JR says a casting kit will need machining before it will be of any use to you.
Have a look at mrpete222 on youtube he did a recent video on building a small engine with just the use of a drill press. This could be taken to a much higher level of detail than he shows. It will give you an idea for the assembly of such a project but not much on the machining side.
|Neil Wyatt||17/09/2018 16:25:04|
17739 forum posts
To be fair, 'challenging' but not impossible is perhaps a reasonable reply.
Even just a pillar drill will make a significant difference, not least with boring the cylinder to size.
O-rings might make up for the fits of stock materials in drilled holes.
|Tim Stevens||17/09/2018 17:12:06|
1159 forum posts
One model you might consider is the Iron Bridge on the edge of Telford. It was made in the days before 'proper engineering' using lathes and mills etc got going, so your model would be true to the original.
But, I do not know if anyone offers a kit, and all the beams etc are cast iron, and very difficult to produce any other way. Except in plastic, and that would be a good exercise in 3-D printing, but again, that is machinery ...
In a way, what you are asking is 'how can I fly without using an engine?' as the whole point of model engineering (for many at least) is to make in a smaller size the products which our grandfathers made for real, using all the machine tools you have not (yet) got. In the Edwardian days, there were shops which would supply kits to make engineering models, and as an extra service, would machine those parts which you could not manage. In modern times, the labour cost of such machining rules it out, as it is cheaper to buy a lathe and a mill (etc) than pay for the work to be done, in most cases.
But if there is a way out, someone on this forum is likely to know of it.
|Derek Lane||17/09/2018 17:33:00|
318 forum posts
Like yourself I have yet to buy my equipment but in the mean time I have spent ( in between woodturning and woodwork ) Using any pieces of metal and practice using files. I also have had a go at drilling with my drill press and reaming. I also have some silver solder which is of unknown grade that I have been getting the feel of joining pieces of metal including brass.
I know it would be nice to have a go at something and see an end result but I would like to be able to at least mess up odd bits than on a nice casting from a kit.
I am also collecting various odd tools as well
I have made a straight edge which is both straight and level as well as being at right angles but then I have a small surface plate and a proper right angle mounting plate ( sorry not sure what the correct name is).
|Brian G||17/09/2018 18:06:53|
|674 forum posts|
It might be easier to start with Stirling engines than steam as they don't (always) need the same close fits. TEE publishing offer "Building Stirling Engines Without a Lathe" for about £7. Otherwise you could fabricate an engine frame and crankshaft and use a Mamod or Wilesco cylinder assembly which are available as spares (quite popular for 16mm locos), or perhaps use nesting tube sizes like this: Popular Mechanics, July 1970, page 154
|Nick Clarke 3||17/09/2018 18:09:35|
687 forum posts
Is there a club nearby that might have a workshop you could use if you joined??
|not done it yet||17/09/2018 18:12:47|
|4508 forum posts|
Tooling, for which you are not sure of the correct name, can often be matched/identified on tool supplier’s lists. The ‘quick index’ on the Arceurotrade website would be a particularly good resource to find the common names of many unknown bits and pieces.
Angle plate describes that one. Most angle plates have right angles unless specialised - and even then they will likely be described as ‘adjustable’.
17869 forum posts
As I said earlier Tom Walshaw (Tubal Cain) made a slightly modified Stuart 10H with just hand tools.
This photo shows the tools used, there was also a hacksaw involved but it was left out of the photo.
The brace and bit was used to drill out the cored hole in the cylinder which was then reamed and all other featured set out from this bore.
|Garry Smith 7||18/09/2018 10:22:58|
|23 forum posts|
Thanks everyone for your advice and help. I have adapted my woodturning lathe to turn some boiler bushes for a small pot boiler I intend to make. Research has come from Tubal Cain and Stan Bray books. I had a small plate in my drawer and put it on the tool post frame. I then bought a small cross slide with tool post and attached this to the plate. I have managed to turn two small phozphor bronze bushes for the boiler shell. It’s slow work but with fine cuts I am pleased with the results. I am now wondering how far I can go with this system. See photos.
|Garry Smith 7||18/09/2018 14:38:18|
|23 forum posts|
|geoff walker 1||18/09/2018 15:31:03|
|398 forum posts|
Looks good to me Gary.
I like your approach, nothing wrong with adapting current equipment to meet an immediate need.
The problem is that it is very time consuming.
Sooner or later you may feel the need "to get on with things" and will need then need to expand your workshop equipment.
2637 forum posts
… 'likes of TC would have served a full apprenticeship and probably spent 6months on learning how to file and fit parts to accurate fits'...
|John Olsen||19/09/2018 08:39:29|
|1029 forum posts|
PM research offers some of their engine kits as machined kits. They have both Stirling and small steam engines. A rough guide is that they are twice the price as a machined set of parts.
As a way of getting started, you could consider buying a set for one of the steam engines, and then have a go at making a small boiler for it. You can buy the fittings for the boiler ready to use, and that means that most of what you need to do is sheet metal work on the boiler, which mostly does not need much in the way of machine tools.
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