Re-purposing Old Screwdrivers

middle.road

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I ended up with a bucket full of screwdrivers at an auction early last year.
Odd batch, new items as well as beat up - well used pieces.
Picked out the cherry pieces and still had a bunch left over.
Dale gave me a bunch of files from the auction where the Bridgeport came from back in May,
and I finally figured out what to do with the screwdrivers.
P1080321r.jpg P1080320r.jpg
I chuck up the handle in the lathe, heat the shaft and then, if it's willing tug it out.
A couple of step drill ops, and then finish with the reamer.
Interestingly enough the 'T' handle general type reamer shown, has about the same taper as a file.
I then heat up the tang on the file gently knock the handle on.
So far the 'Hex' style handles have worked out well. 4-sided handles are going to require a chuck change.
 
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great white

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Cool idea. I'm always looking for file handles, might just use your idea!

:)
 

Terrywerm

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And most of the old screwdriver shanks are probably O-1 tool steel or similar. They could be heated and annealed without too much effort, if you have a need for any such material, of course.
 

hman

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Great idea!

Lacking extra screwdriver handles, dollar store paint scrapers also have pretty good adaptable handles. Just pull the blade out, optionally heat the file's tang, and shove it in. They even have holes in the end for hanging!
 

middle.road

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After checking prices on file handles on Ebay and some supply stores - for sure.
Terry - I totally forgot about that. I'll save you some of the older ones from the Stanley's and such. :grin:
 

Terrywerm

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You don't need to save them for me, Dan, as I've got plenty of drill rod here. I was merely making mention of it because you might want to keep back a few pieces for your own use. Granted, you are trying to get rid of stuff, so maybe I should keep my mouth shut!
 

middle.road

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You don't need to save them for me, Dan, as I've got plenty of drill rod here. I was merely making mention of it because you might want to keep back a few pieces for your own use. Granted, you are trying to get rid of stuff, so maybe I should keep my mouth shut!
Nope, nada, DON'T do that! It always helps to have input from others. I hadn't even thought of the shanks being tool steel.
So I thank you for pointing that out. I'm going to keep a few back for use later.
 

gjmontll

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I successfully ground an old screwdriver shank into a knife-like cutting tool for shaping/broaching a keyway into an aluminum pulley.
 

RJSakowski

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Another old screwdriver modification that I have found very useful: handled socket extensions for 1/4 and 3/8 and " socket drives. You can quickly spin a nut or bolt down and then insert a ratchet to finish torquing.

I bought some cheap screwdrivers and removed the blades as described above. I then bored a through hole and counterbored the end of the handle to receive the socket end of a 5" extension. The extension was then heated just above the melting point of the plastic handle and pressed into place. Socket Extension .JPG
 

RJSakowski

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Old screwdrivers can be reground to make awls, ice picks, and scribes as well. Cut the blade to the desired length and grind, chilling frequently in water to prevent drawing the temper. If you do draw the temper, the blade can be rehardened by heating with a torch to a red-orange (until it loses magnetism) and then quenched. Polish the tip and heat slowly to a dark straw color to temper. If you bend the point into a hook while at a red heat, it will make an excellent cotter key puller.
 

hman

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Another old screwdriver modification that I have found very useful: handled socket extensions for 1/4 and 3/8 and " socket drives. You can quickly spin a nut or bolt down and then insert a ratchet to finish torquing.

I bought some cheap screwdrivers and removed the blades as described above. I then bored a through hole and counterbored the end of the handle to receive the socket end of a 5" extension. The extension was then heated just above the melting point of the plastic handle and pressed into place.
Wowsers!!! I LOVE it!!!!
Best suggestion of the year (so far) ;~) Thanks!
 

cathead

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IMG_0734.JPG IMG_0732.JPG When making castings, it is sometimes handy to have an easy way to pull a mold out of green sand. These screwdrivers
got a new lease on life by cutting them off square and silver soldering on some wood screws.
The screw type screwdriver then can screw into a mold and allow CAREFUL removal from the
green sand.


Also lately I repurposed a tree into a wooden finger box to hold my 5C home made collet blocks and accesories. That way all the parts remain together and can be stowed on the shelf until a use arrives. The box was made from a poplar tree, a poor wood as far as dimensional stability is
concerned. Even so with a coat of water based floor varnish, the box turned out fine.
I will use basswood on my next box project as I have lots of basswood trees it and it is very stable when dry.
 
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RJSakowski

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View attachment 118873 View attachment 118874 When making castings, it is sometimes handy to have an easy way to pull a mold out of green sand. These screwdrivers
got a new lease on life by cutting them off square and silver soldering on some wood screws.
The screw type screwdriver then can screw into a mold and allow CAREFUL removal from the
green sand.
Cathead,

Is this tool your invention? I ask because I picked up a similar tool somewhere, probably an auction, and never knew what its purpose was. I use it for a paper towel holder in the shop.
Unknown Tool .JPG
 

ogberi

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The pattern extractors I made were from cheap yard sale screwdrivers, but I didn't bother cutting the end off. I just brazed the wood screws in place. Another tool I made, but can't find, is a rapping tool. Just a piece of 3/8 steel strap shaped like a tuning fork. Screw in the extractor to the pattern, and rattle the heck out of it with the rapper. I also usually rap directly on the pattern in areas where I know it's likely to try to tear out. Love foundry work. :)
 

cathead

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Cathead,

Is this tool your invention? I ask because I picked up a similar tool somewhere, probably an auction, and never knew what its purpose was. I use it for a paper towel holder in the shop.
View attachment 118877
Pebbleworm has yours figured out I think because it gets continuously wider to start various screw sizes.
 

RJSakowski

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Thanks Cathead and thanks Pebbleworm,

It makes sense. I just use a plain awl for starting screws in wood.
 
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