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Please help machining


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Jo Ford31/03/2019 21:22:03
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi everyone model engineering is not my hobby but I do love some of the stuff you guys create, I’m really struggling to find someone to machine a part, its for a 1920s printing machine I have one but need 10 more everyone I’ve contacted seems to think it’s impossible to make but they managed it 100 years ago so surely it must be I think they are just not interested, could I post up some photos and see if you guys think it’s doable thanks in advance

Plasma01/04/2019 08:35:54
440 forum posts
53 photos

Hi Jo.

Certainly post some pics in an album and attach to this post so we can see the part to be copied.

Is it turned or milled? Or maybe cast if it's a complex shape.

Most things can be done but its usually a question of cost. A company would have to charge to make one off or short run pieces so it's easier to say it cant be done. A bit like a builder not wanting to bother with a simple repair, it's not worth their while.

But a home machinist may tackle it if it's not a complex casting job.

Best regards Mick

Paul Lousick01/04/2019 09:45:59
1501 forum posts
572 photos

Hi Jo,

A drawing or photo with a few dimensions would help. You also need to tell us where you live. There are members all over the world. I am in Australia.


David George 101/04/2019 14:09:29
1304 forum posts
447 photos

Hi Jo If you click on the Forums tab on the black band on the top of the page and then click the website FAQ there is information on how to put pictures on here etc I hope it helps.


vintage engineer01/04/2019 17:29:35
254 forum posts
1 photos

Anything can be made. It's only dictated by time and money.

Jo Ford01/04/2019 17:35:14
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi guys thanks for the help I’ll sort some photos and see what you think, maybe I’ve been going to the wrong places like you say small run not worth the effort cheers

Maurice01/04/2019 17:39:20
469 forum posts
50 photos

Where in the world are you Jo?


Jo Ford01/04/2019 17:43:38
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi I’m in uk Norfolk, thanks I’ve uploaded some images to an album but they are not appearing yet, not sure if they have to be approved first thanks

Neil Wyatt01/04/2019 18:13:42
18141 forum posts
713 photos
77 articles

Hello Jo,

Something has gone wrong - make sure you are uploading JPG files.


Jo Ford01/04/2019 18:19:40
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi yes I’m trying to do it from my phone they are jpg I’m bloody useless at this stuff haha

Jo Ford01/04/2019 18:53:14
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi here it is it’s hard to see but it’s about 4mm diameter it’s basically cylindrical for the first 1/3 then it has 3 grooves running down each side so it then turns almost triangular and finished with a point, made of metal hope that makes sense thanks guys 



Edited By Jo Ford on 01/04/2019 18:56:42

Martin Connelly01/04/2019 19:19:15
1422 forum posts
165 photos

Looks straightforward. If someone said impossible it must have been followed by a modifying comment such as "for no cost" or "at a price you will pay" . Were these professional machine shops?

Martin C

Jo Ford01/04/2019 19:22:05
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi yes all proper companies they seem to think cutting the grooves is the hard bit but I just think they had no interest probably more interested in large runs for big companies cheers

Martin Connelly01/04/2019 19:33:09
1422 forum posts
165 photos

You can cut the grooves with a suitable radius ball nose cutter and the work piece supported along its length. Turning the part through 120 degrees can be done in numerous ways. You probably need a hardenable steel but that is also not a problem.

Martin C

Jo Ford01/04/2019 19:57:40
11 forum posts
1 photos

Hi Martin thanks you make it sound so easy haha, so would they just use a rod of hardened steel and cut into pieces then shape the grooves thanks guys

Jo Ford01/04/2019 20:00:17
11 forum posts
1 photos

If anyone knows of anyone/company that could do it I’d love to hear many thanks

Emgee01/04/2019 20:20:12
1654 forum posts
224 photos

Looks like a job for a tool post mounted grinder, cutting something that small with a ball nose cutter sounds unlikely to me.


vintage engineer01/04/2019 22:47:17
254 forum posts
1 photos

I suspect they would have been forged originally.

John McNamara01/04/2019 23:19:05
1313 forum posts
113 photos


You may find a sewing machine needle that can be adapted to your machine, maybe you could get a longer needle and remove the thread eye and make a blunt point most will already have a groove. The material will be high quality hardened steel so the result will be durable. It can be ground easily but not turned.

Locally industrial sewing machine suppliers will have needles.

The link below may assist also, Schmetz are a leading manufacturer of needles.
Send them the dimensions of your needle


Plasma02/04/2019 07:40:42
440 forum posts
53 photos

Private message sent Jo.

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