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[4]

My Next Project - A Metal Brake

January Project of the Month [3]
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mark_f

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#31
This project is starting to be a little more exciting for me as I start to get more parts mde. Today ,, I finished roughing out the hinges as in the photo below.
Hinges roughed out.JPG

I also made the brackets for the thickness adjusters.
Thickness adjuster brackets.JPG
 

ogberi

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#32
Excellent job so far! I know what you mean about having to reposition the workpiece several times to get the whole length cut. I am contemplating a project that would require the same thing, only I would be milling a keyway. Biggest issue I am trying to figure out is how to secure the workpiece. Looking forward to more progress. And you nailed it when you said that most purchased finger breaks are wimpy. Heck, I could use a hella-stout ring roller, will probably have to build it.
 

mark_f

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#33
Excellent job so far! I know what you mean about having to reposition the workpiece several times to get the whole length cut. I am contemplating a project that would require the same thing, only I would be milling a keyway. Biggest issue I am trying to figure out is how to secure the workpiece. Looking forward to more progress. And you nailed it when you said that most purchased finger breaks are wimpy. Heck, I could use a hella-stout ring roller, will probably have to build it.
I cut a keyway in a long bar once and to hold it , I set it in the table slot and held it down with milling clamps. To move it, I slid it in the slot and reclamped it. I made a small block that fit in the table slot with a keyway in it and put a key in it and the end of the bar before sliding it. that way the alignment stayed perfect. This works great as long as the bar is bigger then the slot.
 

wrmiller

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#34
Doing large pieces on small(er) machines has always been a bit of a brain teaser for me sometimes. But when it goes well, there's the sense of accomplishment that comes with 'thinking outside the box'. :)
 

mark_f

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#35
Since the clamping plate edge must be located on the center of the hinge pin axis, I had to figure an easy way to be sure the location was correct before drilling the large amount of bolt holes that hold the hinge to the end plate.
hinge locator.JPG
IMG_0482.JPG
I milled a half flat in two directions on a piece of precision .750" drill rod. If you look closely in the two photos, the pin is inserted in the hinge and rotated 90 degrees to check alignment in both directions. when the pin rotates easily and fits flush on the surfaces in both directions, the hinge is aligned and clamped in place. Now I can transfer punch all the bolt holes to the end plates knowing everything will be in alignment. Then drill and tap the 16 holes.
image.jpeg
This is the alignment plug I made to use in the above photos to get the hinge on center.
 
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mark_f

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#36
Today I finished the ends with hinges and this completes the base of the brake. I am thinking to go ahead and paint these parts as I hate to assemble and disassemble it again just to paint it.
IMG_0486.JPG As soon as these are painted and the clamp plate is painted, The base will be complete and next will be the bending leaf and handles. I will be changing the handle design somewhat to have longer handles and I want them round. So they will be 7/8" diameter round cold roll for handles. In the photo you can see the blocks that support the ends of the clamping plate. I made them much larger and longer than the prints because my clamping bed is 6 inches deep instead of 4 inches. These interfered with two hinge bolt holes so I plugged the two holes and drilled new ones slightly off original location. Doo-Doo like that happens when you change things or beef them up a little, but it is a minor fix and wont be noticeable in the end.

Note:
If you notice in this photo, the hinge pin areas have been rounded off. Most machinist's would do this on a rotary table, taking a couple hours getting everything set up and dialed in and slowly machining the excess material off. While I could have done this, I did here as I have on many projects. There were layout lines on the parts , so I just milled off most of the material by clamping the part on the table and moving it and milling close to the lines. I then take the part to my belt sander with a course belt and grind to the line turning the part. With a small amount of practice you can get results that few could tell whether or not you used a rotary table. And the job was done on both pieces in 30 minutes instead of hours of making fixtures and setting up.
 
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Bill Gruby

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#37
I sincerely hope ALL the new people to machining are watching this build. Take a good look, no Bridgeport or any other large machines. Mark does not need them. He coaxes the max out of what he has. Kudos to you Mark, you are living proof that it is not the machine but the operator that gets the job done. Super work so far buddy.

"Billy G"
 

mark_f

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#38
I sincerely hope ALL the new people to machining are watching this build. Take a good look, no Bridgeport or any other large machines. Mark does not need them. He coaxes the max out of what he has. Kudos to you Mark, you are living proof that it is not the machine but the operator that gets the job done. Super work so far buddy.

"Billy G"
Thank you , Bill. It is my hope building the projects I build that I can show the hobbyist that he can make almost anything without a lot of expensive equipment, and make quality tooling for himself without forking out a ton of money. By making most of my own machine accessories ( and some machines themselves) I save much money, but even more , it is very satisfying to use equipment you can look at and say " I made that". Doing this really hones your skills and provides a great sense of satisfaction. I often wonder if anyone ever gets the point I try so hard to make and you just gave me that satisfaction that someone does. I thank you for that.
 

wrmiller

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#39
Mark, I consider you and Bill G both to be shining examples of true 'hobby machinists', and cornerstones of what this site is supposed to be. I will never be as good as either of you, but continue to learn from you both, as well as others here. My hat's off to both of you gentlemen. :)

And Mark, your description of how you rounded the area around the hinge pin support is exactly how I would do it. My machines are here to support me, not the other way around. I spend more time hand making/fitting parts than using my machines. My pistolsmith mentor had to use machine setups to fit 1911 barrels because he had so many to do. I spent over an hour last Sat. hand fitting one with files and stones and it came out perfect. Guess I'll never be much of a machinist. Maybe more of a craftsman. :)
 

Eddyde

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#40
It is my hope building the projects I build that I can show the hobbyist that he can make almost anything without a lot of expensive equipment, and make quality tooling for himself without forking out a ton of money.
Thats a great philosophy, truly something to aspire to.
Thank You
 

mark_f

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#41
Mark, I consider you and Bill G both to be shining examples of true 'hobby machinists', and cornerstones of what this site is supposed to be. I will never be as good as either of you, but continue to learn from you both, as well as others here. My hat's off to both of you gentlemen. :)

And Mark, your description of how you rounded the area around the hinge pin support is exactly how I would do it. My machines are here to support me, not the other way around. I spend more time hand making/fitting parts than using my machines. My pistolsmith mentor had to use machine setups to fit 1911 barrels because he had so many to do. I spent over an hour last Sat. hand fitting one with files and stones and it came out perfect. Guess I'll never be much of a machinist. Maybe more of a craftsman. :)
Being a "craftsman" at your chosen pastime is better than anything and you can be proud of that.
 

mark_f

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#42
The bending brake is starting to be a lot of fun to build now that it is starting to look like something.

I drilled and tapped the holes to mount the thickness adjuster brackets on the base ends. I also machined the micro adjusters that mount on the clamp ends. The following photos show the parts and how they fit on the base ends. The bolt will be replaced with a knob for adjusting.
IMG_0489.JPG
IMG_0488.JPG



I want to take a moment here to explain how I locate holes in parts. I am not blessed with a big mill and DRO systems to accurately locate holes, so I do it “ old school”. A good example is drilling and tapping the holes for the micro adjusters. I laid out the first hole with layout dye and a scribe. It is drilled and tapped and the part bolted in place as shown in the photo.
IMG_0490.JPG
Since this is a ¼” hole, I use a ¼” bit to go in the hole and “sot drill the start of the hole for tapping. Next, loosen the part and move it out of the way. Use a tap drill and drill the hole. It will be perfectly located. I do this anytime I need perfectly matched hole locations.
Now , on to more building. This completes the base unit for the bending brake. The next photo shows the completed assembly.
IMG_0492.JPG

The hinges are to have bronze bushings in them. I found a scrap piece of bearing bronze big enough to make them. I put it in the lathe and turned the OD .0005 larger than the bore for a “light” press fit into the hinge. The ID is a slip fit for a .625” dowel pin. After turning , I simply parted off two .510” long bushings as shown in the next two photos.
IMG_0503.JPG
IMG_0504.JPG


To begin the clamping assembly. I cut two pieces of .500 thick steel plate to size and also sawed a 45 degree angle on the ends. The edges were then squared and cut to size on the mill. The next step I s some holes. There is a .625” hole and a .500” hole that has to be identical in both plates so I clamped the plates on my drill press. Again, not being blessed with a large vertical mill ( I could go and use a friend’s mill, but I want to show another way for those who don’t have access to big fancy equipment.)
IMG_0495.JPG
I laid out the two holes on one plate, center punched the locations, and clamped the two together on my drill press table. I put a pointed stylus in the drill press and lined up the center punch mark, keeping the edges of the plates aligned also, and then tighten the clamp. I drill a .250” pilot hole . The next drills and reamer are longer, So I put the end of the .250 drill bit in the hole I just drilled and lower the table and the drill with it. Then tighten the table clamp. This keeps my part aligned with the chuck and lets me get the clearance needed for the next longer drills. The hole is then drilled larger in steps and finally reamed to size with a .625” reamer. Next I move to the location of the .500” hole ad repeat the process. I stuck the .625 reamer in the hole to keep the plates aligned while drilling the second hole, as shown in the next photo.
IMG_0496.JPG
IMG_0497.JPG


The next photo is the plates two plates stacked with matching holes. I slipped a piece of drill rod in each of the holes to keep the parts aligned while drilling several bolt holes which have been laid out on the top plate and center punched.
IMG_0498.JPG
IMG_0499.JPG
After drilling the eight holes with a tap drill , I end up with identical plates. A right and a left. These holes are frilled to be tapped ¼-20, but that will be done later, as these holes first will be transferred to the corresponding parts.

After machining the step pins the plates are installed to check the fit. IMG_0501.JPG IMG_0494.JPG IMG_0500.JPG
 

FOMOGO

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#43
Coming along nicely. Thanks for taking the time to outline all the steps. Mike
 

mark_f

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#44
Coming along nicely. Thanks for taking the time to outline all the steps. Mike
When I am finished the complete write up with photos will be available in a PDF file. I can't include the prints on here as it may be a copyright issue. However, if anyone wants they can email me privately and I can share my revised prints with all my changes with the PDF file
 

mark_f

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#45
I worked on making the eccentric cams and handles. I hate doing eccentrics because I always screw up the offset amount, but these came out ok after a lot of work.

I turned the handles from 1/2 cold roll bar stock and the eccentrics from some mystery metal that is supposed to be CRS bar stock.
image.jpeg
This photo is turning the handles.

image.jpeg
I turned the eccentrics and broached the keyway. A friend has some broaches so I did that at his shop. ( I got to get a set of those. That is definitely the way to make keyways. It only took a few minutes.) Those neat tapered vinyl handle grips came from McMaster Carr. They really add a nice touch.

image.jpeg
The eccentrics and handles are complete. Notice there is a right one and a left one.
 

mark_f

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#46
I made the reach shaft. It is a piece of 5/8" drill rod , 28.200 inches long. it gets a 3/16" key way in each end but they must be clocked to the same position on each end.How to do this took some thought. I put the drill rod in my vice on my little horizontal mill and cut the first key way. Now I need to flip it around and do the same on the other end but need a way to keep them aligned. So I drilled a hole in a small aluminum block, put it on the end with the key way cut and set it at 90 degrees with my digital angle indicator. Now , I can turn it around and align the block to 90 degrees and my next key way will match the other end perfectly.
leveling key way.JPG
reach shaft key way.JPG This is the finished key way. There is another just like it on the other end. :grin:

I found a scrap piece of bronze just long enough to make the reach shaft bearings.
reach shaft bushings.JPG One bearing complete and turning the second one. There was only about a quarter inch of material left after making the bushings.

Since the base unit is complete, I will disassemble it and paint it this weekend. I have chosen a bright blue paint in the wrinkle finish. I like this stuff because it is baked on and holds up really well.
 
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wrmiller

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#47
Love the use of the digital indicator. Learn something new every day. Thanks Mark! :)
 

mark_f

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#50
I made the eccentric straps today. Most people would have made these on the rotary table, but I find it much, much faster to do them by hand. It takes me hours to set up the rotary table and dial it in, make a fixture to hold the parts and then there is cutting them. this adds up to hours.
I laid out the part on the pieces of steel and center punched the center hole location. from this location, I used my compass scribe and laid out the lines of the part. I cut the corners off in the band saw, then clamp the piece on the mill table to mill close to the line. i keep turning the part and mill close to the line until i get all the way around. I end up with a roughed out piece as shown in the next photo.
IMG_0515.JPG If you look close you can see the lines. I now take these to my belt sander and grind to the lines while turning the piece. This whole process has taken about 30 minutes. If you are careful you can make them so it is hard to tell they were not milled.
IMG_0516.JPG This photo is the piece after sanding. next will be to chuck the part in the lathe and if all was done correctly, the center punch mark will be in the center when the chuck is spinning. (When I chucked it up and started the lathe, the punch mark was within .010"of center.)
IMG_0519.JPG This is one of the smaller pieces being turned. there are four total. Two large ones and two small ones.
IMG_0518.JPG This is the larger two finished. The next photo is all four pieces finished. From start to finish these four parts took me about two hours. it would have been three times that dragging out the rotary table and setting it up.
IMG_0520.JPG And here are the completed parts for the clamping system.
 

mark_f

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#51
It took me all day to make two little turnbuckles. I started making the. threaded studs first, two left hand and two right hand threaded pieces. I didn't have any 3/4" hex stock to make the nuts and I wasn't about to buy a few feet to get three inches of the stuff. so......I turned some round stock down to .875" diameter. this is the distance across the wide point of 3/4" hex. I drilled and tapped the holes, a right and a left in each one. I had a left hand tap and die so I used those thinking it would be easier than single pointing the threads, but now I not so sure it was any faster or easier. they are done anyway. I used my hex collet block to cut a hex in the center of the round turnbuckle nuts so they can be adjusted with a wrench.
IMG_0521.JPG Cutting the hex on my mill.

IMG_0522.JPG The finished turnbuckles. Each one has three pieces.

My former SWMBO has gone away for two weeks, so I am painting the finished parts and baking them in the kitchen oven. I am using a bright blue wrinkle finish. I hope I like it cause I got three cans for this project.
 

mark_f

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#53
The paint is cured and time to assemble the base of this brake.
IMG_0526.JPG Here the parts are assembled to check the fit.
IMG_0527.JPG Everything seems to fit well with no problems so far.
IMG_0530.JPG Here I made the pins for the clamp.
IMG_0529.JPG If you notice, I have turned down the ends of the turnbuckles. They look much better this way.

IMG_0532.JPG I removed the clamp end plates to make the finger bar brackets. The prints call for a 5/8" X 1 1/2" block for the bracket. I have increased the size to .750" thick X 2" wide. I believe this will help make the assembly more stable under pressure. The bolt holes are on size and have zero clearance. This also will help make the unit more stable.
IMG_0533.JPG I also increased the size of the support block under the bracket. Again I used zero clearance holes, and the set screws are under pressure to keep the blocks tight and stable. With these assemblies beef up, I am also increasing the size of the finger bar from 5/8" X 1 1/2" to 1" X 2" This is more than twice the mass of the finger bar in the prints. I think this will make a more stable clamp and hopefully I won't need the truss assembly. We shall see.
IMG_0536.JPG
IMG_0535.JPG These photos are the ends reassembled to the base. They will get painted soon. I need to make the finger bar first. IMG_0531.JPG IMG_0534.JPG
 

magu

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#54
Looks great as usual Mark.

I love the paint you are you using, any chance you could post some specifics on it?

One word of caution, I would try to keep paint of the bolting surfaces, at lest at final assembly. You don't want the paint to undermine your bolt preload or shear resistance.
 

cjtoombs

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#55
I was planning on building this brake at one point and I modeled it in CAD, as I was going to CNC some of the parts, and I would need the models done anyway. One issue that I found is that it's ability to make boxes and pans is fairly limmited because brace that holds the fingers is fairly close to the frame. I'll be interested in how it works out once you have it completed, as it looks quite heavy duty. I'm interested in what capacity it will bend, as well. Take care.
 

mark_f

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#56
Looks great as usual Mark.

I love the paint you are you using, any chance you could post some specifics on it?

One word of caution, I would try to keep paint of the bolting surfaces, at lest at final assembly. You don't want the paint to undermine your bolt preload or shear resistance.
I have used wrinkle paint for years. It used to be easily available but is harder to find now. The brand is "VHT" (very high temperature). It is available in black at AutoZone stores, but the other few colors available, I order from amazon. It is kind of costly, around $11 per large rattle can. In order to get the best results and a good "wrinkle" finish, it needs to be applied in at least three good coats letting "tack up" between coats. Then bake in an oven ( I use my kitchen oven) for about 20 minutes at 225 to 250 degrees. the paint will harden as it cools. I like it because it is a durable finish and adds a "rich" look to a project.

Getting paint on the surfaces is not a problem , but the main surfaces where stress is a factor , I mask that area. I have put parts together with this finish in the past and the paint "compresses" if clamped to a very thin film, but critical surfaces, I mask off.
 

mark_f

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#57
I was planning on building this brake at one point and I modeled it in CAD, as I was going to CNC some of the parts, and I would need the models done anyway. One issue that I found is that it's ability to make boxes and pans is fairly limmited because brace that holds the fingers is fairly close to the frame. I'll be interested in how it works out once you have it completed, as it looks quite heavy duty. I'm interested in what capacity it will bend, as well. Take care.
The limit to making a box or pan will depend on its size. The only way to get the most versatility would be to have the fingers mounted vertically. I believe this brake will serve most of my needs. I did take this subject into consideration before deciding and this is the heaviest brake I found plans for. I have beefed up the finger area to help prevent "flexing" I will test it to find its limits when finished. :grin:. I have some samples of sheet steel and aluminum waiting.
 

mark_f

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#58
I made two feet to hold the brake. I used two pieces of 1/4" thick angle iron to make them.
image.jpeg
You may notice I also have installed the finger bar. It is a piece of 1" X 2" steel bar stock. This is an upgrade from the prints. The prints cal for 5/8"X 1 1/2". This one has twice the mass so I am hoping I won't need the truss as it should solve the flexing problem.
image.jpeg

Everything is coming together nicely. I have made some , I feel ,improvements by beefing up a couple areas. I tried to stick close to the prints but I may have to re make the micro adjusters because it looks like the fingers will be too far forward by almost .200". It will be an easy fix but I will wait until I get the fingers made to be sure. I believe this problem arose from the fact that the dimensions for the pivot pin hole were mising from the prints and I calculated it from some of the other prints. I may have made a boo boo in my figuring. New adjusters will fix it though if needed. The steel for the fingers will be here Saturday or Monday. I ordered cold roll for these as I don't want to fight machining the hot roll .
 

Bill Gruby

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#59
One of these days Mark all that stuff is gonna fall on your head while you take the picture. Lookin good my friend.

"Billy G"
 

mark_f

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#60
image.jpeg
I think I forgot to put in the photo of the feet I added.
Thanks Bill, it's hard taking those upside down photos.

I have no idea why the photos post upside down or sideways.
 
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