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Derek Lane11/01/2022 10:14:55
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719 forum posts
164 photos

I am about to start my first project. I have my metal cut to rough size and want to mill this and drill without moving the metal.

The size of this is 19" X 3 1/2" I need to clean the four outer edges (I know I will need to move the clamps during this operation)

This will eventually become the frames for a loco.

Now to the question I need these to be raised off of the bed to avoid damaging the mill bed( definitely a No No) I do not have any steel suitable to do this would it be wrong to use some PAR timber as a spacer taking note that timber selection will be carefully selected ie: nothing like oak due to the tannins in the wood

Brian Wood11/01/2022 10:20:23
2549 forum posts
39 photos

Hello Derek,

MDF will do perfectly well and neither does it not take the edge off the cutters.

Regards

Brian

Journeyman11/01/2022 10:22:27
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1146 forum posts
230 photos

I have used MDF when profiling small parts. Has the advantage that it is flat smooth and pretty non-compressible. Don't get it wet though. Not sure if this is suitable for doing loco frames though. I'm sure an expert will pass by soon!

I would also fix the two frames together using a couple of countersunk screws and nuts so that they don't drift appart whilst re-clamping. Put the screws through a 'removed' area and machine these last.

John

Edited By Journeyman on 11/01/2022 10:27:26

Dave Wootton11/01/2022 10:24:00
290 forum posts
65 photos

Hi Derek

+1 for MDF I use it all the time, as Brian says doesn't harm cutters and is also a consistent thickness.

Dave

Brian Wood11/01/2022 10:26:54
2549 forum posts
39 photos

Journeyman

I don't see the length as being a problem if that is what you are concerned about, the limiting factor is really the space available on the table top upon which the work is to be clamped

Brian

Journeyman11/01/2022 10:31:03
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1146 forum posts
230 photos
Posted by Brian Wood on 11/01/2022 10:26:54:

Journeyman

I don't see the length as being a problem if that is what you are concerned about, the limiting factor is really the space available on the table top upon which the work is to be clamped

Brian

Just being cautious as I have never done anything as large as loco frames, don't want to dispense duff advice. As other also seem to go with MDF I am now sure it will be fine.

John

Derek Lane11/01/2022 10:42:24
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719 forum posts
164 photos

Thank you to all that responded.

 

I do not like using MDF due to the dust is can produce even though I do have the correct PPE for it it can still hang around.

The reason I said wood is that I have plenty of hardwoods that are suitable like Beech

While reading the answers to my question I suddenly realised that I have another material that I can use and that is partition panels from toilet cubicles(Yes it will be disinfected before I use itdevil). I have cut this with a circular saw and used a piece on a worktop before

dscf2126.jpg

Edited By Derek Lane on 11/01/2022 11:02:34

Derek Lane11/01/2022 10:55:34
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719 forum posts
164 photos
Posted by Journeyman on 11/01/2022 10:22:27:

I would also fix the two frames together using a couple of countersunk screws and nuts so that they don't drift appart whilst re-clamping. Put the screws through a 'removed' area and machine these last.

John

Edited By Journeyman on 11/01/2022 10:27:26

There are three holes on the plans that are for this exact reason even though the plan does not state this but to start with I will drill holes in the cut out for the horns before I clamp it down as these can be done approximately before clamping down as I will leave cutting these out as the last operation.

Trying to do as much milling and drilling without disturbing the set up

Nicholas Wheeler 111/01/2022 11:22:07
906 forum posts
86 photos

Would a thin, cheap plastic chopping board be a suitable material?

I've been meaning to try it for some time.

JA11/01/2022 11:43:07
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1345 forum posts
80 photos

It may be expensive but I have used aluminium plate in such cases for smaller items. It is clean and after such use is re-useable for smaller fixtures etc. It also allows for other methods of holding the job to the milling table.

JA

Nigel Graham 211/01/2022 12:25:42
2009 forum posts
27 photos

Old laminated chipboard panels (ex-furniture) are good for such work.

They are usually sensibly flat (old shelves though, are likely to have been warped by their loads), and do not raise much dust if cut into only just as deeply as necessary.

Robert Atkinson 211/01/2022 12:54:57
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1195 forum posts
20 photos

I would not use chipboard, old or new. It can have a lot of abrasive material in it. Kitchen worktop routers etc use carbide cutters for good reason.

Robert.

JasonB11/01/2022 13:06:05
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Moderator
22560 forum posts
2634 photos
1 articles

Indeed, even MDF will soon dull HSS. If I'm doing curved work with melamine board I tend to use router cutters with replaceable carbide blades and it does not take long for them to show a distinct wear pattern where firstly the melamine abrades the edge and then the finer chips of the chipboard surface top and bottom. Likewise if on the odd occasion I have to use HSS spindle knives on MDF the edge does not last long

If you were using MDF or MFC for something like Derek's frames then I would suggest cutting it just smaller than the O/A finished size so for most of the milling you miss it and it's only cut outs and drilling that will bring HSS into contact with it. Not so bad if using carbide cutters.

Derek Lane11/01/2022 13:15:31
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719 forum posts
164 photos
Posted by JasonB on 11/01/2022 13:06:05:

Indeed, even MDF will soon dull HSS. If I'm doing curved work with melamine board I tend to use router cutters with replaceable carbide blades and it does not take long for them to show a distinct wear pattern where firstly the melamine abrades the edge and then the finer chips of the chipboard surface top and bottom. Likewise if on the odd occasion I have to use HSS spindle knives on MDF the edge does not last long

If you were using MDF or MFC for something like Derek's frames then I would suggest cutting it just smaller than the O/A finished size so for most of the milling you miss it and it's only cut outs and drilling that will bring HSS into contact with it. Not so bad if using carbide cutters.

Yes Jason that is what I will be doing making the spacer smaller than the final frame size but close enough for a good support. Most of the the things that will be penetrating through into the board will be drills for the holes.

David George 111/01/2022 22:19:01
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1808 forum posts
503 photos

Hi Derek I have a set of washers about 20mm OD X 12MM ID X 8MM long, the length is identical on the set, I put them under the part I am machining under the clamp area and move them as nessesary without removing the job and clamp where nessesary.

 

20200123_091528.jpg

 

David

Edited By David George 1 on 11/01/2022 22:20:15

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