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PostPosted: Sat Nov 21, 2015 10:15 am 
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Hi,

Many thanks Thewindowguy for taking the time to add your interesting story. :salute:

I think many of us have had to diversify from our chosen path. When I was in the pit a number of my chums were on better money than me doing much easier jobs outside the pit and eventually I decided to leave the pit which wasn't an easy choice given the top guys I worked with and the outstanding training I had received through our then National Coal Board. I then went from job to job which was easy in those days earning a crust wherever I could; I worked for years in the mill the biggest mill being Wormald's & Walker blanket manufacturers who were known and respected the world over; I started as a weftman feeding the huge weaving shed. Hang on whilst I stoke the spell checker up because it can't spell? I progressed in the same mill to become "Operator" in the top secret weaving shed where two revolutionary fibre looms had been installed; myself and two assistants used to turn out a mile of blanket per shift; two of these looms were running flat out for five days a week then the day shift would have to go in on Saturday mornings for maintenance duties; me being single I worked many weekends including Sunday together with the engineer in charge doing the more complicated repairs; I'm thin as a rail so could go right inside the loom to de-grease using carbon tetrachloride then applying very heavy fibreglass cloth over cracks in the needle-board beam/arms; how the H&S lot would love these activities now.

I've worked as a fibreglass laminator on bonus earning top money until I suffered mild dermatitis in my hands so quit before it got too late; bus conductor both in Wakefield and Dewsbury. Dye-house operative on loose material; pattern warper on fine worsted's; I used to drive heavy goods vehicles during my holidays; lathe turner at Rag Machine & Swift. Sole employee at a waste paper/cardboard company owned and run by two feuding brothers; I owned my own garage in Batley. When the mill went on short time I took a part time job at the waste company that's how I ended up full time there and at the same time I was collecting money for March the Tailor's so I was doing three jobs a week just to pay our mortgage and Bron was also working full time in the plastics industry at this time Thatcher was destroying our country with short time working and most of the country on strikes. When I married Bron we bought a semi with a huge mortgage and I started work at Brook Motors headquarters as a wagon loader loading electric motors. Bron's father was a driver at Brooks so got me the job in No5 Despatch Home Trade; I remained with the company for 24 years until I fully retired by which time I was in charge of three departments. I've never forgotten my excellent training in the pit which set me up for life teaching me to think for myself and to use both my head and hands which appears to be lacking these days? Hands now used to hold cigarette and mobile phone?

Your industry too has changed Thewindowguy with the introduction of plastic windows which I confess I dislike. I prefer wooden window frames and doors; our bungalow still retains the original softwood window frames and front door whilst I had to make the new rear door when we moved it because the original door was sticking so the moron who lived here forced the door open breaking it. I just like wooden things so I'm totally biased and admit it. I replaced the sealed double glazing units last year to the bungalow front still retaining the original frames these units finally starting to fail after giving over 50 years service.

Gone are the days when son's followed father's into jobs learning the many skills from their fathers; my late father and grandfather were coal miners hence I followed them into the pit but to be trained as an engineer. It's surprising these days that so few father's have real skills; yes they are skilled in their particular job but mostly trained like robots doing mundane work day in day out requiring little thought; turn up do the job go home then watch TV mostly sport and knock a few lagers back; hardly a role model? Good on you Thewindowguy in gaining both knowledge and tools from your father and grandfather; I hope you are using the knowledge and tools to good effect?

I'm just an ordinary guy without any special skills other than my pit training and training in other jobs but what makes me quite different is the way I look at things. I was taught to think for myself so never accept anything on face value; I think the smallest job through looking at ways for improvement; this is how I ended up in charge of three departments. I dislike any sport and hate to see any animal suffer in the name of sport; I never ever drink alcohol and I don't smoke; I don't kneel to pray to a God that is a lousy role model who let his son be born in a dirty stable then let the same son be nailed to a cross hence I don't believe in God. No offence intended to anyone who does believe in God. I try to help rather than hinder. Bron and I have very few friends whom we call friends and can trust; we know many people and many visit us but these are generally acquaintances; decent enough people but not what we would regard as close friends.

You are so right about forums Thewindowguy; there are now forums covering just about any topic and these forums are valuable on a few levels in bringing like minded people together to share and exchange knowledge and information; some forums are very specialized whereas as others like UHM cover a vast range of subjects. I like UHM because I can ramble on whilst going miles off topic without Chez or the moderators jumping on me for my sins; I like to add my stories and in turn like to encourage others to add their stories because although the actual thread is about something in particular it doesn't have to resemble a workshop manual; much better with a bit of personal interest added?

Lots of new members join forums for a specific question they require an answer to and this is fine but do they then lose out by not joining in more fully; I realize there are many reasons that can prevent them joining in but we all have stories to tell?

Keep your thumb well out of the way for a while Thewindowguy because now you've hurt it your thumb will be front line to get knocked around until it heals fully; we all make silly mistakes from time to time but as long as the same mistake isn't made then we learn. This is the time of year that test vehicle batteries?

Looking across the street I can see a car with snow on it and it's perishing outside hence I'm here rambling on; sleet and snow are forecast for today so the car remains in the garage; I advertised the redundant 5 x fluorescent fittings on Gumtree last weekend and very quickly a person called Maria contacted me saying she wanted them if still for sale but could only collect on Saturday (today); I've had these fittings in my way all week and I think it possible I'll end up with them longer; I hope I'm wrong but I've been let down so many times on promises from other people?

Kind regards, Col.

Because I've been a while composing this story when I clicked on "Preview" once again I was asked to log in so I hit the back arrow and again the request to log in appeared; next time I hit the back button my story was lost but tuff; I saved it so have now pasted it.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 21, 2015 1:17 pm 
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Sounds like you have had a varied enjoyable career Colin.
Unlike most young people I have been at the same place for 16 years since I left school.
I have seen lots of changes in that time altho I do fit upvc I do tell people if it's not right for there house! I mainly specialise in steel Windows repairing these making custom fittings and bringing them back to life which I enjoy and have been all over the country doing these, another thing I enjoy is fitting shop fronts again travelled all over doing these.
I still use my grandads tools one of them is a more and Wright combination square that was passed to me from my dad it still has all the attachment and the wooden box .

Good luck shifting them lights!



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PostPosted: Sat Nov 21, 2015 3:10 pm 
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Hi,

You must be quite rare these days Thewindowguy in that you do a lot of steel frame window work which sounds interesting but I don't envy you having to work outside most of the time in this climate? How do you treat steel windows to prevent rust or corrosion and can old steel window frames be adapted to accept sealed double glazing units?

My faith in human nature has just been restored; Maria turned up with a friend and the lights have now gone; it's interesting who I meet; these two young ladies were very pleasant both being bikers; Maria's friend is a biking instructor having a number of bikes up to 1,250cc so we had a good natter as they were very interested in my workshop especially the lathes. I'm more pleased about getting rid of the lights rather than the money they went for; it's nice to have my benches clear again because I've been worried about breaking the tubes already having broken one tube.

I've just checked the car tires to find all five a bit down on pressure which I expected now the bitterly cold weather is here; warm sunshine makes quite a bit of difference to tyre pressures; all were down by 4 psi.

Kind regards, Col.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 21, 2015 4:13 pm 
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Retired wrote:
Hi,

You must be quite rare these days Thewindowguy in that you do a lot of steel frame window work which sounds interesting but I don't envy you having to work outside most of the time in this climate? How do you treat steel windows to prevent rust or corrosion and can old steel window frames be adapted to accept sealed double glazing units?

hi col yes we're rare there are 2 of us at our company. if we fit new frames these days they come galvinized so no rust issues ,old frames pre galvinized before 1950 ish we scrape them back to bare metal using a carbide scraper if the paint is thick we use a cross pien hammer to chip paint off, we call the process " chip scrape ease and adjust". rust is treated with rust solution frames can be filled with body filler or new sections welded in these frames are removed after either way the frames are painted with johnstones high build zinc primer not cheap but best paint we have found dries in 5 mins. We get asked all the time to put double glazed units in old steel frames why you can you shouldn't and we don't reasons being the rebates arent deep enough to get a unit in some bedding compound and to face it off, also there are no drainage water being the enemy of glass units also another enemy is sunlight on the seal in a steel window this is always exposed. There are some companies that make new windows to except double glazed units but these are massively expensive.being as steel windows don't meet themal standards they are mainly used in restoration projects and most will go back as single glazed as they would have been to keep the conservation officer happy. Condensation is the thing that kills steel windows in houses that have them as people seal there houses fit central heating we get many phone calls about this the simple answer is ventilation.






My faith in human nature has just been restored; Maria turned up with a friend and the lights have now gone; it's interesting who I meet; these two young ladies were very pleasant both being bikers; Maria's friend is a biking instructor having a number of bikes up to 1,250cc so we had a good natter as they were very interested in my workshop especially the lathes. I'm more pleased about getting rid of the lights rather than the money they went for; it's nice to have my benches clear again because I've been worried about breaking the tubes already having broken one tube.

I've just checked the car tires to find all five a bit down on pressure which I expected now the bitterly cold weather is here; warm sunshine makes quite a bit of difference to tyre pressures; all were down by 4 psi.
I've been thinking col and you should install a big industrial drying machine at the entrance of your garage bit like at a car wash that will blast the rain off :lol: :lol: :lol:


Also Don't for get the antifreeze at this time of year
Kind regards, Col.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2015 10:18 am 
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Hi,

Many thanks Thewindowguy for adding the interesting information regarding steel framed windows. If I need to protect steel in future I'll use the Johnstone's zinc primer you recommend; not cheap to buy as you say but the cheapest in the long run if it does the job. I can't understand people who spend many hours in perpetration only then to slap on the cheapest materials they can get hold of; it just doesn't make sense? I save a fortune on labour doing the work myself so I never ever skimp on materials insisting on only the best available. Our softwood window frames are originals of over 50 years old and are still like new because I look after them; the last two times I've painted them I've used Johnstone's oil based gloss which I refresh every four or five years; I've burnt off once in the last 28 years; next year I'll be using Johnstone's again. :thumbleft:

Good idea regarding using a big industrial drying machine to blow the car off when the car is wet; many years ago Bron and I visited a surplus store on the outskirts of Oldham and in the store on a stand was a huge aero engine which had been in use on a Sunderland; I'd have loved to get this home and crank it up; I'm sure with a propeller fitted it would make a wonderful drying machine? :scratch:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short_Sunderland

Kind regards, Col.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2015 1:05 pm 
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I agree if you're going to do a job don't skimp!
One of the main thing that bugs me is when I finish a window and get it opening a closing like new is when customers slap the cheapest paint on quickly then shut the windows , calls us back to say the paints come off or the window won't open even tho we give all the advice , the biggest problem is site work when there on a budget and time frame. I won't entertain referring steel windows at this time of year bare steel and moisture just doesn't mix.

That would have dried your car in no time at all although I wouldn't have like to have lived next door when you fired it up!



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PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 5:31 pm 
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Hi,

Thanks Thewindowguy; cheap usually is cheap and cheap paint is usually the most expensive? One tip I picked up years ago to prevent new paint from sticking doors and windows closed was to apply some talcum powder but I've so far never tried this?

I hope your chimney is sparkling clean Noel because Santa is now on his way to squeeze a big box down it. I posted the punch this afternoon using "MyHermes" so hopefully it will arrive safely in the next few days. Please note that there are two items in the box; the mechanical punch and a small package.

Our friends David and Jennifer visited us today and David was interested to see the punch working so he was able to try it out and was most impressed saying how little effort it required. As promised now David has seen the punch I'm happy to let you have it with my compliments for Christmas. :thumbleft:

I'm keeping my head down now because I have lots of my own projects I want to play around with; I need to stitch a flat drive belt onto the Lorch Lathe; I need to sort out a small problem with the Graduate Lathe because it sometimes doesn't start when the start button is pressed possibly due to a loose connection or dirty contacts; it's powered by a VFD to complicate it a bit but I'll sort it then I can play around with woodturning; I'm keen to have a go at making woodturning tools similar to the Robert Sorby Spiraling tools etc; I made a chatter tool and have only ever used this on a test piece.

Good luck with the punch Noel my fingers are crossed that you can settle down and use it to the full; you'll need to practice tool sharpening and find the best way to suit you to use the punch; I've only ensured it punches as near as I could get it and you might have to slightly adjust grinding angles but it is fully working with a tool and die installed to get you up and running; I used the punch mounted in my big engineering vice so it wasn't ideal; secure mounting of the punch at a suitable height whilst seated I'm sure would be the way to go but please experiment with it and you don't need to use excess force; it's well oiled but keeping it oiled is important to prevent wear. I enjoyed designing and making the punch and it kept me fully occupied for a few weeks but I enjoy these types of project making use of my head and hands. :thumbleft:

My thanks also go to you DWD for involving me in this project; if you see anyone needing a nuclear power station making or some other simple job I'm now busy? :lol: :lol: :lol:

Kind regards, Col.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2015 6:18 pm 
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Can't thank you enough Colin. I have been climbing the walls in anticipation. Over the last
few days, I have been mostly just forming rings. It's a hard auld graft, specially with the
Fibromyalgia but hopefully I'll just develop a pain threshold for it after a while.

I have around 200 rings processed, out of which, I expect to discard at least 10, but once
I have a nice patch made, I will post it and show you how it looks. I might be able to send
off a few patches to one of my favourite youtube subscriptions, Skallagrim, I think it would be
splendid to see some impact & ballistic tests with bows, crossbows and various stabbing and
slicing weapons because chainmaile is a highly misunderstood type of armour and seeing
some of the myths surrounding it being debunked is appealing to me. Skallagrim is well
equipped to do so, being sponsered, he has all manner of weapons, but not chainmaile to
date.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC3WIoh ... oMrrWVZZFA

If I can get the chainmaile on his show, I'll be sure to come back again and post about it.

Also, if anyone has any queries regarding chainmaile making, by all means, feel free
to ask and I will try to help you out with it.

Thanks again
Noel



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2015 3:02 pm 
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Hi,

You are most welcome Noel I just hope the punch comes up to your expectations but we'll know pretty soon once you receive it. The status is now collected.

I'd better update you Noel as to what to expect because I mentioned I've posted two items to you. At the beginning of this thread you would have been happy just to get someone willing enough with a lathe to turn you a manual punch and die. I've included two such manual punches and these punches accept the same tooling as the mechanical punch. I've also included a large die base that will accept removable dies the die being secured with a set screw. One manual punch the tool is held with a grub screw the second manual punch the tool is held with a machine screw. The die base is just a lump of steel I had left over from a previous job and for your purpose it looked ideal having already been reduced in diameter at one end; better for you to play with it than have it on my shelf.

A spare bearing is included which I doubt you'll need but I have a number of these so won't miss one. The small plastic bag contains the original die and punch I was experimenting with these are the ones which punch a tiny slot removing metal. The used hacksaw blade is what I ground down to aid making the slots in the dies. Spare tooling is also included; some are drilled at 1.5mm dia just in case you wish to experiment with round rivets. Other tooling are blank 3mm HSS and also dies pre drilled.The experimental bit of tin and galvanized steel are included then you can see what the mechanical punch does in my hands.

2 x 1.5mm and 2 x 2.0mm HSS twist drills are included these are the sizes I used and are new. The punch blanks supplied will need grinding by you to suit your needs; the lettering on the blanks indicate the end not to grind if it makes any difference? The tooling installed in the mechanical punch I'm sure will be very near to what you desire so hopefully you can examine how I've ground the punch and copy this. The corresponding die I originally slotted at 0.3mm then centre popped using the drill shank included; a bit crude but actually worked. Other dies for the manual punches I've centered for you. For your part Noel I wish you the best of luck because you will have to spend time learning how to sharpen the tooling to your taste; it's better that you do this because you understand your own needs and will have the tiny rivets which I lacked. The dies can be adjusted to what I made by either drilling a bit more or if too deep simply file across the surface these being unhardened silver steel but tough enough for your needs.

The end of the mechanical punch plunger I've drilled to accept 3mm tooling for punching the slits but I also drilled alongside to accept 1/4" dia tooling because my initial design was that the punch would also double up as a rivet setting punch but you will have to experiment a bit; it's not difficult to add a dimple into the end of the silver steel. My idea was that you would punch the slits into all your rings then set the machine up for rivet setting but this is untried by me but added as an option because I just like to experiment and if I can make a tool or machine multiple task I'll do so.

I drilled clearance holes in the die base to allow some adjustment; each time tooling is changed the lever is lowered to gently nip the punch and die then the two securing die base set screws can be nipped up but these only require nipping. The punch tooling is released by removing the die and its base the the plunger is brought down; wedge the lever to prevent it rising due to the springs and the grub screws are accessible.

My own thoughts Noel is that I believe the mechanical punch will prove ideal if you can get used to it because the punching tool and die are already in perfect alignment removing guesswork although you will have to position each ring but this should become easier with practice; I used long nosed pliers for positioning the test rings so please don't accept these as perfect; I was standing at the bench in poor lighting feeling unbalanced when I punched these but all I really wanted to do was to test the punch and I was satisfied it worked OK. Tweezers would give more delicate control to aid positioning the rings to be punched.

This thread has dragged on somewhat partly due to terrible weather and poor lighting but also because at times I've been unwell with my skin flare up as a reaction to my food intolerance; I've since upgraded all the garage lighting to big LED panels and at last I'm feeling better on myself. Ideally a couple of months later would have suited me because I wasn't set up in the garage for this type of job because I've been woodworking for so long; anyway I've enjoyed this project immensely even if I've lost a lot of sleep in the design stages.

I think I've achieved what I set out to do and in the end everything I've thus far done can be done entirely without the use of a lathe. Not my best work but certainly my best given my working conditions so I'm happy so far; the final verdict will be yours Noel. Good luck with the punches and also good luck for your future. Sometimes a helping hand is all you need. :thumbleft:

Kind regards, Col.


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Hi Colin, the items arrived today :cheers:

Having just used it briefly, it's really about as good as it is ever likely
to get as far as drifting chainmaile rings go. I'll need to bolt it down,
ideally at my computer desk. I'm also going to fashion a magnifying
glass onto the side of it, to assist with accuracy and I'll need to position
a lamp on it too, such is the fine scale of everything involved.

I won't be able to get cracking with it today, I'll be buying some
coal tomorrow for annealing wire, which I'll flatten out and cut
to make wedge rivets. That process alone is going to require
a bit of development on my part as obviously I will be seeking
wire of as uniform a thickness as is reasonably possible without
using a machine.

Once I have all those little details sorted out, I'll report back
but quite honestly, it's looking exceptionally good. Having
examined the drifting tool you made for it, I must say, that's
amazing! replicating that work is going to require some time
but I think I can manage it with a bit of patience.

Thanks again
Noel.



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Hi,

I'm pleased the items arrived safely Noel and you are most welcome to them.

You'll have seen the chain maille rings I added the rivet slits to and although positioning of the slits isn't very accurate it proved to me the punch will do the job required of it. I think Noel that you will struggle at first trying to copy grinding the tool tip because this is difficult to do freehand and requires deep concentration and patience; I found using the angle grinder set up as shown in a previous post was the easiest way I could dream up; I could have designed grinding jigs but I wanted to do this whole project using very basic kit then others who are like minded could easily copy. Grinding the tool tip needs to be done with a light touch and with fingers positioned near the tip then heat can be felt whilst grinding indicating a dip in cold water is needed otherwise the tip will quickly turn blue and lose its temper?

The tool tip as supplied is very near the specification you requested Noel but can be adjusted to suit as the job progresses and you have made some rivets to experiment with; I ground the tip by firstly reducing the end of the tool to 0.3mm thickness using a digital vernier caliper; as the size nears then there is a lot less metal at the tip so extra care is required not to blue and draw the tip temper. Next the two angles are added by grinding followed by the four chamfers; I know it's not easy to do this but I did it so can recommend using the same method. It's difficult trying to imagine a tool tip which goes from a single point to 2mm wide x 0.3mm thick x 0.8mm long with four chamfers let alone grinding such a tip but now everyone knows how to do it? :scratch:

Eye protection is a must whilst using any grinder especially an angle grinder and ear protection is also advised. My notes are they way I work and may prove dangerous to others so please always exercise common sense. If it doesn't feel safe then it isn't safe.

Please keep the punch lubricated for long trouble free service and given the punches robustness to should last many years to come.

It's all over to you now Noel I think I've kept my promise in that I said I would do my best to help with this request so I can now bow out and resume my own projects having put this project to bed. Wishing you the very best of luck Noel. :thumbleft:

Kind regards, Col.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2015 3:56 pm 
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Well done Colin :thumbright:

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Said I would come back and post an image of how the maile looks
with Colin's drifting tool and hitches anvil.
Attachment:
nb1.jpg
nb1.jpg [ 419.53 KiB | Viewed 194 times ]




It's not a great amount, this is it at a more accurate scale
Attachment:
nb2.jpg
nb2.jpg [ 28.88 KiB | Viewed 194 times ]




Very pleased with all the work you guys did, so thanks again.

Noel.



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Hi,

Thanks DWD and thanks Noel for the update; I'm pleased you are making progress Noel; good luck. :thumbleft:

Kind regards, Col.

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