"One Perfect Part at a Time"

casting

Armchair Machinist

That is a term I used to read or hear a lot. Substitute whatever hobby or profession you like after armchair. They all mean the same. It refers to that fact that there are people who go out and “do” and then go publish about their real experience. Then there is whole bunches more folks that enjoy reading a book or magazine in a comfortable armchair about those active folks who are doing the doing, and then the reader lives that activity vicariously.

I cater to that armchair adventurer with my workshop web sites and blogs. That makes me a… Continue reading

Milling Wax Adventure

The year is running out fast. I will soon have to say good-bye to 2011. This is the year (last Saturday actually) that I became 65 years old. Time enough for pondering that event, now to keep moving. Ha!

I did some machining of wax on the Taig CNC mill Saturday. I love machining wax (the hard blue kind). The wax is not good for creating real finished useful items but it makes excellent models for making molds and doing casting.

I spent the morning doing the design work in VECTRIC Aspire software. I was creating a Christmas… Continue reading

Looking Ahead 2012

I offer a little machine shop rambling today. It’s getting close to the end of another year so I have been taking stock of what I have accomplished this year and what I need to be thinking about for the next year.

One big item is my operation of the “The Hobbyist Machine Store” website store. I already have written that I dropped one of the “me too” product lines. The store is too small to be a good income producing venture. I would have to say it financially compares to being slightly better than leaving my money… Continue reading

“Proofs” of Concept

I was doing some product research today. This is something I made in about five to six hours. I had been thinking of how I was going to make these all week. I just needed a good Saturday to give it a shot.

As the title indicates this is a proof of concept not a real project. I didn’t want to slow myself down doing all the pictures of the process. The process is still experimental so  full disclosure can wait until a better time. I have my camera at the ready.

Long time readers know I… Continue reading

…and a cast of thousands.


That’s a famous movie intro tag from when I was a kid. (Ben Hur, Moses and The Ten Commandments, etc.) In this case the “cast” is a bit different. No Charleston Heston. Yes, a pun.

The process here is casting pewter into a mold. Perhaps thousands could be made given enough time. What I find interesting is the use of a rubber mold. When I was much younger I remember toy soldiers cast in metal molds. (The metal ones are still available.)

The mold shown here looks like it was made with hot vulcanized rubber but hot… Continue reading

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