Mike M

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Posts posted by Mike M

  1. When I first got into the business (50 years ago) it was CADD - Computer Aided Design and Drafting. The original companies in the field were startups such as Calma, Computervision and Gerber Scientific. The technology was basically built around digitizers connected to CRT's to provide an interactive environment. Some of the larger companies such as IBM and Control Data had internal development programs using large interactive CRT's, but the small startup companies ruled the roost.

    The equipment was applied to a variety of disciplines such as Electrical Schematic Drafting, Printed Circuit Layout, Mechanical Drafting, Architecture, etc. The systems were primarily drafting systems and had the ability to drive numerically controlled machines for creating parts and for creating the masks for etching printed circuit boards. 

    This was before the days of PC's and the systems were supported by time shared mainframe computers by mini computers sold by Data General, Digital Equipment or Hewlett Packard. System prices were tens of thousands of dollars per workstation.

    Over the years the drafting part of the name was dropped and the industry adopted CAD as it's identifier.

     

     

  2. I have a home made vacuum chucking system. I use three chucks for a variety of applications.

    1. A 14" diameter flat chuck made from two layers of BB plywood covered in craft foam. I use this any time I have a bowl or platter with a smooth rim. 

    2. A 4" diameter deep chuck made from a 4" to 2" PVC reducer with the edge covered in craft foam. I use this if I have a bowl or platter that does not have a rim that will seal such as natural edge or square rim. I also use this chuck if I have to mount a bowl to work on the inside.

    3. A 3" diameter deep chuck made from a 3" to 2" PVC reducer. I use this for smaller projects.

    I find with porous woods I do better if I use a coat or two of finish to seal the grain. In most cases, doing the inside of the bowl is sufficient. I generally use a shellac and oil blend or a lacquer based sanding sealer.

    I tried a 2" deep chuck but found that I didn't get enough holding power to do much beyond sanding. Smaller pieces haven't seemed to be a problem since the foot is also smaller,hence less force.

  3. Sides of a butt joint will move unevenly. Long grain doesn't move much but cross grain will ! Both sides of a miter should move about the same. 

    Tite- Joint fasteners are easy to install. Drill 2 holes in each half of the counter. They even sell a jig to help drill them. Tighten with a steel rod which should come w the drill jig.

    You can cut a wide miter with a track saw if you are very meticulous when laying out the cuts.

    Pretty reasonable price too. Made by KV, sold on Amazon.

    I agree that the sides of the miter will move together - but - as the wood expands or contracts across the width, the angle of the joint will change. Depending on humidity changes and type of wood, this could be significant enough to cause a problem if both legs of the joint are fixed against the walls. If one leg is a peninsula, it could be allowed to float as needed. You can figure the amount of movement and build it into the design.

     

  4. I have tried the cole jaws, then built a longworth chuck. Both worked well (the cole jaws were limited size).

    Then I built a vacuum chucking system and haven't used the mechanical jaws since.Vacuum is faster, easier and can hold natural rim bowls with ease. I bought the pump on ebay, made my own coupler and made an assortment of heads from a mixture of PVC and plywood. Total cost of the system was about $200.

    If you are interested, the cole jaws are for Nova chucks and the longworth fits on a 1 1/4" spindle. I'd be happy to sell either or both.

  5. I agree on using horizontal grain on all 5 pieces. Center piece glued into a shallow dado will be more than adequate. Corner joints may be a little weak if just butt joints. Some options could be mitered joints with splines, box joints or dovetails. You could even go with the Greene & Greene look.

  6. First of all let's agree on how the gouges are measured. A gouge can be measured across the flutes or as the diameter of the bar. Spindle gouges are typically measured as the diameter of the bar and bowl gouges across the flutes.

     

    That being said, I find that I use my 3/8 (1/2" diameter bar) with a swept back grind most frequently.

  7. Drilling freehand won't work. You can't align or space the holse with enough accuracy to look even. You need to find a way to mechanically position the block for each hole. Also, as mentioned above, drill first and glue up later. Here's how I would approach the problem.

     

    1. Determine the center to center distance between holes and rip a scrap of mdf to that size. Cut the strip into blocks. Now you have spacers for positioning the holes side to side.

    2. Rip a strip the width of the stagger pattern. This strip against a fence will give you the front to back stagger spacing.

    3. Clamp a fence to the drill press table. Align so the fence is set to the back hole in the stagger pattern. Place the strip (#2) between the fence and piece to align to the front hole if necessary.

    4. Clamp a stop block to the fence to align the bit with the hole furthest from the block. (use strip if hole is in front row)

    5. Drill every other hole adding two of the index blocks between the piece and the stop block

    6. Insert (or remove the strip) and start with one index block. Repeat #5 to drill the second row of holes in the pattern.

    7  Repeat 5 and 6 for each of the tiers.

     

    notes;

    a. Be sure to lock the drill press table to the column. If the table moves, the pattern will shift both sided to side and front to back.

    b. Use the depth stop to get even depth holes

    c. Clear chips after each hole. Even one chip in the wrong place will cause a problem. I would use an air hose and clear the chips after each hole before moving the piece or index blocks.

    d. Cut an extra top shelf to use as a spacer to align the steps. Start with the top two layers and use brads from the bottom to keep the layers from slipping as the clamps are applied.

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  8. Whatever you do you will have to design the pivot point to be at or near the front edge of the cabinet.  This translates into making the main cabinet deep enough so that the door boxes are inside the cabinet and not in front.  If the outside width of the cabinet is 24", the door boxes will be about 11" wide. Deduct 1 1/2" for the thickness of the box and another inch off the corner in the center to provide swing clearance and you are left with about 8 1/2" +- of usable shelf in each door box.  You would also want to use piano hinges to support the weight of the door loaded up with paint cans.

     

    I would build a standard cabinet with a flat door that was deep enough to hold a gallon behind a pint can and keep it simple. I would use the cup hinges that open within the frame of the cabinet so I could have adjacent cabinets.  I could then use the back of the door to hang brushes, scrapers, etc.

  9. Looks nice, keep it as decoration, but don't try cooking with it.

     

    1. The steam will warp it.

    2. The internal heat could ignite it

    3. The heat coming up around the edges of the pan will char the rim and probably ignite it.

    4. The smoke will stink up the house.

     

    There is a reason that pot lids are made of metal, tempered glass or high temp plastics.

  10. I have this saw in my shop for about 7 years and I have never had a problem. The only negative is the depth required behind the saw (I would like to place it closer to the wal)l. This has been a common problem with SCMS's until recently when the Kapex and Bosch saws hit the market.

     

    I use it mostly for crosscutting hardwood and find the accuracy excellent. Make sure you have a quality blade designed for SCMS.

     

    As I recall, I paid about $400 for my saw in 2007. I don't know the current price, but if it is in good shape, $225 sounds like a good buy

  11. I know it isn't "pure" but there is no reason you can't use the narrow offcuts for the top. If you joined a couple of 2 - 2.5 inch strips to make one of the boards for the top you can save a solid board. Just use the joined board in an interior position and don't put two of them adjacent. The glue joints will be hidden and are stronger than the wood. You can even go to the extreme of making the bottom half of the board from two short pieces.

  12. That's really nice - and more along the lines of what I was thinking in terms of a recessed box vs. a lifting mech. As I look at that and contemplate building it, I have so many questions. I hope you don't mind...

     

    Did you laminate the table top yourself?

     

    When you said you screwed the box into the top, did you drill up through holes in the apron into the bottom of the table top?

     

    My plan was to not use legs but rest the table on four of those organizer shelves (3 x 3 cubbies you can get at Big Box place). So I wasn't going to have an apron (or do I still need something to stiffen up the table top?) Could I just make a box like yours except that the apron sides were only as long as the box, and just screw the sides to the top?

     

    How do you cut the insert to precisely match the opening? I assume you use the piece you cut out with the plunge router and trim it to fit the opening but how about the corners?

     

    Do you stain/finish the oak before or after it's all put together?

     

    Thanks in advance.

    I laminated the table myself. I started with 1" MDF, cut it to size and routed the hole. I then used contact cement to glue a sheet of formica to the top and a sheet of formica backing to the bottom. I used a flush trim bit to cut the formica to match the edges of the top and the hole. I then glued the oak trim on and planed it flush with the top. Finally I rounded over the outside edges and cut the rabbet on the hole, sanded and finished with a couple of coats of wiping varnish. Masking tape kept the varnish off the formica.

     

    If you look at the third picture you can see two holes in the apron and two in the extra board. These are drilled halfway thru at 3/8" and the rest of the way at 3/16".

     

    Sewing machines vibrate as the needle goes up and down. The aprons and divider board might be overkill, but friend wife appreciates the fact that the top is rock steady and doesn't shake when she sews.  If you use the cubbies, you could just extend the apron to each cubby so it has a finished look.  You could even paint it to match the cubbies so it looks like it all belongs together.

     

    I didn't use the cutout, mainly because it was too heavy. The solid insert I made with a piece of 3/4" MDF trimmed out with oak.  I cut it to fit the recess and rounded the corners on a disc/belt sander. I then routed a 3/8" rabbet around the edge to match the one in the table top.  The plexiglas insert was cut on the table saw to fit the rabbet and on the band saw to fit the throat of the machine.  Since the hole is a rectangle, it is easy to get the sides to fit. The ends took a bit of cut and try on the sander, but that wasn't too hard either.

     

    As an aside, I haven't seen the solid inserts since I made the tables (about 12 years ago).  My wife leaves her machines in the tables and the inserts are buried or lost.

     

    Any other questions?  I'll look forward to your posting some pictures.

     

    Mike

  13. I made a few tables for my wife's sewing machines. I used the same basic design each time. In each case I used an oak base with aprons to support the legs and top and a formica covered top with oak trim around the inside edge of the cutout and outside edge of the table top.

     

    The trim around the inside of the hole is 3/4" thick oak and I used a 3/8" rabbet bit in my router to create a ledge for the insert. I made a solid insert as well as a 3/8" plexiglas top cut to fit the machine. (pic 2)

     

    I made a support shelf by adding a board parallel to the front apron and a couple of short boards serving as the ends of a box for the machine. A 1/2" plywood bottom is dado'ed into the sides of the box to support the machine. You can either make it exactly the right depth or make it slightly deeper and adjust the depth with a drop in shim. This will allow for a new machine to replace the current model.

     

    I drilled a few screw holes to snug the top against the top of the box.  I also added an access hole in the end for the wires

     

    I cut the hole in the top using a plunge router. I framed the hole with 1/2" thick strips and used a 1/4" spiral bit with 3/8" template guide to cut the hole. After adding the trim strips I cut the rabbet. BTW, the resulting corners will have a radius matching the rabbet bit.

     

    If I was using a solid wood top, I wouldn't need the additional trim strips. I could then make the corners of the hole rounded instead of square. If you are still interested in rounded corners, I'll be happy to describe the process.

     

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