The way forward.
|John McNamara||20/05/2011 07:40:24|
1289 forum posts
New technology in Model Engineers Workshop
If the magazine is to satisfy the needs of both the Publisher and the readers it must cater for a wide audience for the publisher to succeed ; from beginners to advanced metal working experts. This should also attract a wide range of advertisers.
It must also balance the reader’s needs.
Beginner’s projects: simple articles on tools and the use of machines.
Advanced articles: There is clearly a need for that cover a specialisation such as the recent articles on gear cutting, Tool and cutter grinders, and CAD among many others.
A little history…
In 1930 Electricity was still not widely available to households. You would have to say the electrical articles at that time were certainly new technology.
But what of new technology now?
CNC 2 axis to at least 5 axes; closely intertwined with CAD.
Carbon fibre and fibre glass composite materials. These days if you hop on a plane or sit in your car a lot of it is composite materials. Again it is easy to make the moulds needed at home.
Epoxy Concrete (Now often referred to as “Mineral casting” Search “Epoxy bearing material” and “Epoxy concrete CNC” at this site. Of note the German Machine tool maker HERMLE Easily found on Google. Almost every machine they make has an epoxy concrete frame. The number of machine makers doing this would now number near 100. They use it for High damping and stability. To make machines that work down to .00000x inches. Extraordinary accuracy
In 1930 the experimenters of the day were abuzz with new technology. For the magazine to prosper it must accept generational change; the readership certainly will change over time.
I guess many of the readers are baby boomers…I am an early one. If you embrace new technology and study up suddenly new doors will open. I put the following at the beginning of a recent PowerPoint I wrote, I hope it conveys a little of the spirit that pervades every true Metal working Artist.
This is the beginning of a journey, a journey without a known end. Not knowing the exact destination makes the trip exciting. We are seeking an ideal that in reality can never be reached. If we persevere we will however come close. Persistence is omnipotent. This document is written to those that like to travel unknown paths. If you have never undertaken such a trip I encourage you to do so, your spirit will be uplifted.
MEW needs to think positively of the future of Engineering and Model Engineering Although I would prefer simply say we are all Engineers.
Edited By John McNamara on 20/05/2011 07:52:43
111 forum posts
Interesting post.... I would like to think I am a Trainee Amateur Engineer.
I am definitely at the start of a new, (and currently expensive) journey for which there can be no financial payback, but I hope will be significant enjoyment and learning to be had, and I do not know where this journey will lead.
Oh and I love new technology.
Edited By EtheAv8r on 20/05/2011 09:16:00
|3088 forum posts|
|Hi John, when is your first article written by you to become available?|
59 forum posts
I am certainly no Luddite when it comes to 'new technology'. However I spend my working life sat in front of a computer screen, 9 or 10 hours a day, 5 days a week.
In my leisure time I have no intention of doing the same, therefore the articles on 3D modelling and CNC programming are of no interest to me.
I appreciate that the situation is different for the many retired people among MEW's readership, who may welcome the opportunity to use their computers for something constructive.
|Ian S C||20/05/2011 11:06:30|
7390 forum posts
I think that back in1898 (vol 1 ME), there seemed to be more adventurest articals, covering aeroplanes, electric motors / generators, or how to build a gas engine, this engine was big enough to power a small lathe. Also such things as making batteries, or producing your own acetylene. I can't just think of things currently that would be as futuristic as some of the thing were back then, ie., an electric motor was pretty advanced technoligy in 1898. Ian S C
|Paul Boscott||20/05/2011 11:20:40|
99 forum posts
Looking at it like that the old issues of model engineer were much closer to the cutting edje of what was going on at the time.
|Stephen Benson||20/05/2011 11:27:41|
198 forum posts
I am not sure these modern "new technology" features are in the same league as the content that filled the older magazines,take CNC for example mostly they seem to take something already built that was never designed for CNC and bolt on some commercial motors and software. This does not seem to be in the spirit of the old time amateur modellers at all I suppose that now most ME/MEW readers are cash rich and time poor this new approach makes some sense, but for me the balance is wrong.
Edited By Stephen Benson on 20/05/2011 11:39:33
|John Coates||20/05/2011 12:19:45|
553 forum posts
John McNamara: thanks for some thought provoking words
pcb1962: I'm only a couple of years behind you and spend my daytime working at a computer producing contract documentation. Leisure computer activity is restricted to website wandering, emailing and ebaying!
I think my general response to John's points is that I am a newbie but am not doing model sized work, I am making tooling to use my lathe and mill to work on my full size motorcycles to maintain or adapt them. I am still learning how to mill, turn and hold work pieces to meet tolerances and produce to a good finish. My beef with the CNC route is that I will have to replace my two machines and possibly my non-Windows computers. This adds cost to a budget which is small to begin with and as a mid-40 year old new dad with 6 and 2 year olds who, together with SWMBO, has claims upon all my money for the long term, that budget has to be well spent. That's why both machines and a lot of tooling have been purchased second hand to help control costs.
And right now at my point on the road away from newbieness, turning the hand wheels and watching the action of the cutting tool on the metal is giving me immense pleasure and satisfaction knowing it is ME that is achieving what is before my eyes.
111 forum posts
I too sit in front of a computer all day, 5 days a week. I too do not wish to sit in front of a compuiter in my workshop. I too have no interest in 3D modlling nor programming CNC machines.
However for me the term 'New Technology' is not just about PCs or Computer Technology, it has a wider scope; such as new or different materials or new and innovative ways of using older materials, DRO's with carbon fibre encoders rather than the delicate glass scales, brushless motors, digital and laser measuring or aligning tools, LED lamps, simpler fasteners.
For instance I fly R/C model aircraft, and helicopters, all electric and the helicopters are a wonder of new technology and engineering (LiPo batteries, specialist chargers, small very powerful motors and their controllers, 2.4 gig radio, servos, carbon fibre and aluminim frames - much of which can be produced/improved in the home workshop with lathe and mill), etc etc etc. I also fly a home made, self built light aircraft made largly of epoxy plasitcs and steel and aluminium, and when I built it this was definitly 'new technology'. My point is (that my view is) that New Technology is not just about computers or sitting at a screen.
|612 forum posts|
I think that health and safety stuff and the risk of getting sued is the overriding issue nowadays, so the magazine has to tone down what it espouses.
If you burnt yourself to a crisp back then or skewered yourself then that was Darwinism.
Darwinism has been superseded by Lawyers and Government Regulations.
So experimental stuff which blows up or carries big wodges of electricity or cancer risks or risks to third parties or risk of noise or risk of clouds of noxious smoke etc etc etc is living in a modern age which don't like 'dem things no more.
Was it not the famous Mr Edgar T Westbury who received Britains first ever noise abatement order from a Local Council?
So things looked and were a lot more exciting back then because you could simply "go for it!" and tell the world if you pulled it off.
Nowadays the first thing we say is: "are we allowed to do that?"
25 forum posts
But would most of todays innovation fall into this catagory?
Plus I do seem to recall an article suggesting the use of mains leads to plug into batteries for portable tools!
As often is quoted is it not that the editor can only print the articles that he is presented with. More likely the contributors are not that forward thinking. There are a number of contributors to this forum who believe that if they are not controlling their machine tools themselves then there is no skill in it. Perhap this country has lost its innovators, hence we are going down hill!
|John Coates||20/05/2011 13:40:42|
553 forum posts
I do hope I'm not in that list. I am still learning the basics hence my pleasure in the manual methods and I'm afraid CNC is just out of my budget league. The Law of cold hard reality of accessible cash determines that one I'm afraid!
|Andrew Johnston||20/05/2011 14:26:23|
4699 forum posts
I do hope that said contributors (if they exist) do not stoop so low as to use power feeds; definitely not cricket.
|John Stevenson||20/05/2011 15:56:40|
5068 forum posts
I have always wondered why one needs a power cross slide feed on something like a Myford?
From one end to the other is only a spit and hawk away.
All my manual lathes being a lot bigger have this feature as standard but I must admit I hardly ever use it, much preferring to feed by hand to get the best out as regards finish or speed.
I had to smile at the remark about Edgar T getting a Noise Abatement order. Perhaps in the search of advanced technology someone will get an ASBO for chucking lumps of " Epoxy Concrete" thru someone's front window ?
|David Clark 1||20/05/2011 16:17:05|
3357 forum posts
I did not need a power crossfeed on a Myford but it was very useful when facing the large 9in. diameter faceplate.
The previous owner had messed it up and it was like a ploughed field.
Four skims later it was great.
I would not want to do that manually.
I have faced off a standard Myford 7in. faceplate manually and although it cleaned up in one pass, it still took a while to cut across.
543 forum posts
Apologies to the OP for the OT post but wasn't that Lawrence Sparey that had the noise abatement judgement?
|John Stevenson||20/05/2011 17:14:31|
5068 forum posts
Edited By John Stevenson on 20/05/2011 17:16:07
|Chris Trice||20/05/2011 19:16:43|
1362 forum posts
I've got power crossfeed on my Myford and although I don't use it often, at the right time, it's a godsend. Think of it as a luxury attachment that's built in. If it's on bigger lathes, why not a Myford? For facing large castings bolted to the faceplate, it can't be bettered.
|Chris Trice||20/05/2011 19:28:14|
1362 forum posts
I've often thought how interesting it would be to see how things are done in industry and compare them with amateur methods. Industry obviously leads the`way as far as establishing the best way to do something and the type of cutters used. For example, (and I'm ignoring automated production lines because they bear no resemblance to amateur tooling), which collet system has been most widely adopted? What type of lathe tooling (HSS, tipped, solid carbide?) etc. People in the engineering enviroment take this sort of knowledge for granted but the keen amateur has no exposure to it. The new epoxy concrete idea I can see being applied to amateur tooling like the relatively recent articles in the magazine doing this to a milling machine.
394 forum posts
What have you done now John S,? This is now going to turn into another AINT MYFORDS WONDERFULL thread
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