from Lathe to Production Machine

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by royinidaho, Sep 10, 2011.

  1. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    Admittedly I know jack squat about the machining trade. But what I do know, I really know..:rolleyes:

    I have my process down to where after truing and converting the bench lathe to pseudo CNC the part I desire can be turned in a minute or so.

    The problem is that the machine has to be attended every minute. Driving costs to dramatic levels.

    I can create and install an automatic feed capability fairly simply. However ya still gotta loosen the chuck for each piece.

    There are such things a pneumatic and hydraulic chucks and collet chucks. I know nothing about them other than they seem to be expensive.

    These devices are the only thing that I've come across that will do away with the baby sitting. I think.......

    If by switching a switch the collet chuck opens and closes, the feed mechanism will feed the round stock (3/16" and a bit larger) without a problem, I think.......

    The three jaw chuck on the machine is a 4" thing.

    The process is cut and part the part. Slide the stock against a stop and repeat over and over and over.

    Any hints or helps.

    Roy
     
  2. kiwi3006

    kiwi3006 Well-Known Member

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    Sorry Roy I can't really help you but I sure an interested as to what you are up to. My guess is a high BC .277 projectile:rolleyes:.

    Stu.
     

  3. shortgrass

    shortgrass Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like instead of making an expensive conversion , you should have looked aroud for a Brown & Sharps single spindle automatic!
     
  4. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    Stu,

    Yep, you're spot on.

    Shortgrass,

    Too funny. You definitely don't know me very well! Me and expensive aren't compatible. :D Being a nuub with ziltch machining background, knowledge or skills how was I supposed to know there was a gizmo such as a gizmo. If I wouldn't have seen the name in this context I would have tho't that a Brown & Sharps single spindle automatic was some kind of a weapon.:rolleyes:

    I now know more about Brown and Sharpe than I need to:
    Brown & Sharpe Manufacturing Co. -- Company History

    Thanks for the pointer. This is just another reason I hang around this place.

    I can only imagine that the first fella that simply wanted a bunch of "holes" had to first have the need, then had to invent or innovate a "bit" of some sort that didn't work very well then continue until he had a rotary bit then something to turn it. Thus the brace and bit. Wanting more holes faster the drill motor was developed. For more accuracy along came the drill press and on and on and all. Hell, all that was wanted was a hole!

    Now I'm gonna have to learn how to select a decent Brown & Sharps single spindle automatic gizmo. There is one in Edmonton Alberta. The prices are well under what a single run on a Citizen costs by an order of magnitude. (100,000*.15 = 15,000 smackeroos!)

    My approach for the prototype process is simple, inexpensive (fairly), and way out of the box. Harbor Freight bench lathe - trued chuck to zero run out or as close as humanly possible (ruined sever jaws learning how to do this), LEGOs Mindstorms brick and motors, any materials scrounged around the apartment building that looked like it could me made to work, several trips to Ace Hardware for odds and ends. I've been able to "program" to compensate for the weakness of the inexpensive (cheap) equipment I'm using. Can hold tolerances under what my 29 buck digital calipers can measure. When I 'mike' them they are 'close enough' for me.:rolleyes: until testing shows greater consistency is necessary.

    Hopefully nearing production. Will know better when tester results come in. I can't shoot until next spring when I'll run these things through the 270 AM which turns out to be one hell of a stress test for bullets.

    Thanks again for the heads up on the B&S machine. If you know of any lemme know. Have truck will travel.:)
     
  5. lazylabs

    lazylabs Well-Known Member

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    Do you plan any sort of swaging or sorting operation to account for those tiny variations you get? I would worry that with a stout load in such a big case and you get one bullet this is a heavy .0001 off and being a solid you get into pressure trouble in a hurry. If you used a carbide sizing die or gauge it might save ya??? Sorry for jumping in but there is a reason those machines with tolerances tight enough to make bullets are BIG money.
     
  6. T3-OleMan

    T3-OleMan Well-Known Member

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    :DRoy,
    Is this another attempt to use “ THE GLUE”????? :D
    Are you still doing the N.R.O. (Nipple Replacement Operation):cool: or are you going for the Whole 9 yards???
    Seeing how you once said how you “(being cheap and all:rolleyes:)
    I sure hope you don't waste $15,000 more trying not to throw away that one tube of $3.00 Super Glue!:rolleyes:


    Good luck which ever.:)

    ....and above all , Be SAFE.
     
  7. shortgrass

    shortgrass Well-Known Member

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    The B&S single spindle is probably considered obsolete, should be an easy find. Probably been thousands sold for scrap, by now. I 've not had nearly the experience with them as I have with multiple spindle automatics (Acme-Gridley). At production speeds we were able to hold tolerances of +.001/-.000. That was 30 years ago using high speed tooling and massive amounts of cutting oil under alot of pressure (close the guards before starting, or take an oil bath). By slowing feed rates a bit, one my hold closer tolerances. The key is in the tooling and the set-up. High quality material plays a part, too. Much of the 'tight tolerence' stuff we did then was made using material from "Latrobe Steel Specialties", don't even know if they're still in business or not. Depends on what parts you are making, and tolerances required whether an 'old fashioned screw machine' will meet your requirements. They were the mass producer of their day. But, there's no doubt about it, extensive knowledge of tooling, speeds & feeds, and the mechanics of the machine are required! There is no computer to do your thinking for you!
     
  8. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    Will I ever live the super glue thing down......:rolleyes: I'm finding that there is something called, I suppose tension, which when cut properly eliminates the need for space age adhesive.:rolleyes: That was quite hard to come to grips with. I had no idea of how much a thou really is.:D

    I've also, in the last few minutes, learned that something called a "form" cutting tool exists. I've had that tho't in the ol' knoggin for a while. Will contact the company that makes them next week.

    My advantage is that I want a machine that makes only one thing very well. Not a machine that can make different things.

    All I want is to be able to hit a woof every once in awhile regardless of how far away it is. That's about all the motivation I need.:D
     
  9. T3-OleMan

    T3-OleMan Well-Known Member

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    :cool:....I bees wit ya BRO!

    You help make my old day! Keep up the good work. I won't AX you any more about the glue if you promise never to use it again to hold the bolt together, the primer in place and to hold the bullet in place with equal neck tension by using only one silly MM of brass to do this with.:)

    U are a GOOD man Charlie Brown!

    Get -R- Done.
     
  10. shortgrass

    shortgrass Well-Known Member

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    It seems to me the first patent for a multiple spindle machine was in the 1890's! Form tools were already used then on single spindle machines. You really are 'crawling around in the dark' , aren't you. You'll have to get rid of the chuck and go to collets. You'll probably have to build a pneumatic opening/closing system for the collet(s) or find an existing device that can be made to work with your machine. On a W&S #3 Electro-Cycle (turrent lathe), that I did set-up work on, there was a pneumatic 'bar feeder. It would handle up to 1 3/4" material, yours should be much easier to build (because of its small size and lesser air requirements). You'll need an adjustable bar stop, of sorts, too. One that works automatically.
     
  11. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    Crawling around in the dark is an understatement! But, Hey, may as well spend the ol' life doing somethin'.:)

    I've know about the collet issue for quite awhile. Not quite ready to jump in yet. The one that would fit the lathe, was about the right size was closer to $7k than $6k.

    I've found several options since then but will have to learn more before jumping.

    It's quite interesting to crawl through the unknown without a guide.

    I can see what I want in my head. No one else seem to understand.

    I'll feel pretty dumb when I get it as best I can and isn't good enough for prime time. :rolleyes:

    There is a reason Berger and others don't tackle this! Bet I'm gonna learn why.


    Several of my other ideas were tackled by Elmer Keith and another famous gun fella, can't recall his name at the moment at the Ogden Utah armory back in the day. It had to do with flash tubes and forward ignition. I think it is still used on the 20mm cannon cartridge??

    Needless to say I've launched several small copper tubes down range from time to time. The concept greatly improves ES numbers, reduces felt recoil and launches copper down range from time to time.:D So far no flash tube impact on target.....yet....
     
  12. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    my same thoughts! Perfect job for a # one or an Ought
    gary
     
  13. royinidaho

    royinidaho Writers Guild

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    I'm thinkin' an 00 or a variant. Max material diameter will be .3 and usually 3/16".

    I'll be doing so serious scrounging around.
     
  14. Trickymissfit

    Trickymissfit Well-Known Member

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    Double Ought!! I saw one once. Ever see an Ought Warner Swasey chucker? I don't think the B&S machines are built anymore, and they can be a nightmare to put back together. I personally would look for a Traube or a Davenport. Greenlee would be too expensive.

    Another interesting little bar feed lathe you might find is a Swiss Pattern. I think the max they'll handle is .50 steel. The spindle head will neeed a rebuild every year with hard usage in steel, and even then it's not hard to do. Still I hate them! A Davenport or a Traube is a much better machine, but you can buy five or six of them for the price of a good screw machine
    gary