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Poor mans mill feed speed control

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AdrianR01/07/2020 15:09:02
573 forum posts
36 photos

While twiddling my knob thinking of other pastimes two things occurred to me;

  1. I have not got a clue how fast to twiddle to get the optimal feed.
  2. Twiddling RPM is slow and in the range of musical Beats Per Minute.

A quick trip to the Android Play Store and I downloaded the free app "Simple Metronome" Which incidentally has a handy flash the display on the beat feature.

So now If I want 140mm/min with my 2mm pitch lead screw I set the BPM to 70 and twiddle away in time with the beat.

For really slow feeds it is worth having two beats to the twiddle.

Next on the world domination list is make a MIDI-controlled mill.


Grindstone Cowboy01/07/2020 15:38:38
854 forum posts
64 photos

Nice one - I believe that in the days of hand-cranked movie cameras, the cameramen would hum or whistle a suitable tune, one of the favourites being "The Anvil Chorus". No idea what feedrate that would give you...



Nigel Graham 203/07/2020 22:44:40
2039 forum posts
28 photos

Not sure why that would have reminded me of the works first-aid courses in resuscitation, with either Nellie The Elephant or the BeeGees' Stayin' Alive the suggested timing-songs for that.

Especially since they might be a bit too fast for twiddling a hand-wheel but would soon wear you out when using a manual shaper...

Nigel Graham 214/08/2020 00:30:16
2039 forum posts
28 photos


I'll remember that when next using my Drummond shaper.

Ummm...., if pop music is too fast for shaping.

The Swan from Saint-Saens' The Carnival of the Animals? A bit short perhaps.

Neptune, from Holst's Planets Suite? That's in a non-even time-signature, 5/4 I think, so cutting stroke in 3 crotchets, quick return in 2.

Sibelius' Second Symphony? Well, it does last for a good half-hour or more, and the last section especially is highly rhythmic with lots of power-bits interspersed with more peaceful bits - only that risks uneven stroke-lengths hence uneven feed!


A friend who is a fireman (the putting-out, not Long Drag, type) told me of a colleague who used Stayin' Alive on a real "shout", not realising he was overheard by one of the casualty's relatives....

.... who only went and complained.

I remarked to my pal that that seemed a tad ungrateful, especially as the casualty did indeed Stay Alive.

Nigel Graham 214/08/2020 00:37:26
2039 forum posts
28 photos

Oh Silly Me - I've gone and replied to my own previous post!

Somehow I failed to spot my own name. Still, I did add to what it had said.

And if you can edit or delete anything you've posted on this forum, as I have been told is theoretically possible, I have never discovered how.

Enough!14/08/2020 01:11:24
1719 forum posts
1 photos
Posted by Nigel Graham 2 on 14/08/2020 00:37:26:

And if you can edit or delete anything you've posted on this forum, as I have been told is theoretically possible, I have never discovered how.

You can edit your own post within a short time (15 minutes or so?) of posting it. During that time there will be an "Edit" selection attached to it when you read it.

You can sort of delete it by the same method. If you delete all the text, the message will be blank except for the "edited at ..." message.

Nigel Graham 224/08/2020 21:59:15
2039 forum posts
28 photos

Thank you Bandersnatch. I think I spotted my mistake very quickly but did not see the Edit tool. I'll look when I post this......

Martin Kyte24/08/2020 22:07:30
2725 forum posts
48 photos

For max removal rate I suggest Paranoid, The Sabre Dance and anything by Motorhead.

regards Martin

Steviegtr24/08/2020 23:40:23
2422 forum posts
336 photos

I have a similar sort of thing for tig welding. I bought a cheap electronic metronome & set it to how quickly i feed the wire into the work. Have i mastered it. Noo not yet but keep trying.


John Olsen25/08/2020 06:11:44
1240 forum posts
94 photos
1 articles

Would Bolero be suitable?

oldvelo25/08/2020 09:00:28
294 forum posts
56 photos


An Ampmeter on the motor leads to monitor motor current to prevent overloading is a useful addition

amp meter.jpg


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