2014 CAMS Yard Sale

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Another Chesapeake Area Metalworking Society Yard Sale is in the can, we were blessed with beautiful weather, and a good time was had by all. Thanks go out to all Steve’s minions, who do the behind-the-scenes work to make it happen for the past 15 years (as of today).
I arrived about an hour late, and found some very brisk trading going on in the vendor area. A very helpful gentleman in suspenders found me a nice spot to set up my table and within ten minutes everything of real value on my table was gone, and I got an opportunity to make a quick run around and see what the other guys had brought. I shot a few pics, but seemed to only get shots of one side of the mall (I get distracted easily). I did manage to get myself some of the items on my shopping list (but not all), and a few freebies. I had also promised to deliver a few items to the Yard Sale, and had arranged to take delivery of a few pre-sale items. I suspect that my truck weighed about the same going out as it did coming in. Here are some pics, for those who could not attend.

 

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Shaper Attachment for the USMT Horizontal Mill

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(Another Craigslist score)………..

 

About a year ago I got an Email from my friend Steve (the guy who sold me the United States Machine Tool Milling Machine) that a shaper head was posted on C-list that would fit the mill. I snatched it and (as usual) it sat around for a year or so, until I got around to adapting it to my mill. Its funny how nothing ever REALLY fits without some modification. Well, I finally got around to working on it a few weeks ago (got tired of tripping over it is more like it).

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Optimizing Shop Space (or: A Corner Shelf From Scrap)

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There is a corner in my shop that is more or less dead space. For some reason its too small to fit any machines in, and all kind of Use-it-once-a-month stuff finds it’s way there. I don’t have enough room in my shop to waste any space, and this space was crying to get filled with something for quite a while. I can’t put a filing cabinet or any conventional kind of shelf in there; its just too small an area.

About a month ago, one of the contractors at work sold me a small pile of plate steel for what amounts to beer money. I have been sitting on about 600 LBS of 7/16″ fish plate in varying shapes. I had one 36″ round that looked like it would be a good candidate  for a corner shelf, if it was quartered.

 

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Milling Machine Vise Overhaul – Garvin #13 for United States Machine Tool Horizontal Milling Machine

Sometimes you get a machine and start using it, and it just ain’t right. I have been using the USMT #1 for a while, and have found the mill to be very versatile, I hadn’t been real pleased with either of the two vises I’ve had on it. Theres nothing better than busting your knuckles on a vise thats too big, or having a part fly out of a vise thats too small.  The first vise I had on the mill was a Palmgren which was nice, but I didn’t trust it to hold big pieces when I was taking big cuts. I got a 6 inch Bridgeport vise which held my work much more securely, but stuck out far enough towards the operator, that you had to be careful or you would lose skin off your knuckles when operating the hand lever. This really got bad when I put the handwheel adapter on the machine, so the big vise had to go. TRY to find a 5 inch vise for a milling machine!

 

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Luckily, the CAMS Yard Sale was just around the corner. This is a place where you can trade your surplus machine tool stuff for new surplus stuff from somebody else. Every year I come back home with the same amount of “stuff” as I left home with, its just new stuff. I brought the Palmgren down with me, sold that and bought this beauty.

 

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Hand Wheel Modification to United States Machine Tool #1 Horizontal Milling Machine

I was feeling a little depressed today about my lack of real “work” in the shop lately. Its not that I’m not doing anything, but that I’m always sidetracked by some essential task. This week it was getting the brakes on my truck to pass inspection, tomorrow it will be something else. Between my “real job”, and keeping up with all the site orders and the associated Emails; it gets a little overwhelming sometimes. The blog has been inactive lately, and its getting me down. I decided to dig out some pics I had taken of some old jobs and get them up, just to feel like I’ve been doing something.

I had to do a run of some lathe T slot nuts a while back, and found that the lever on my USMT mill just didn’t have enough travel to get the job in one pass, so I decided to make a hand wheel attachment for the mill. It needed to be large enough to have adequate torque to make a tandem 1/2′ deep cut in one pass (I’m lazy). I had a pretty good size hand wheel off some piece of equipment I pulled out of the dumpster at work that looked like a good candidate.

 

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This is a blank I cut off some  surplus stock from work. I left it long so I could trim it once I had it sized to fit the rack spindle later. I wasn’t working off a drawing, as I tend to just wing it when I build stuff.

 

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