JV Puleo

My 1910 Mitchell "parts car" project

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I threaded the 2nd cap...

 

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And then got on to making the ends. This is about twice as much brass bar as I really need but I don't have a good way of cutting or holding small pieces. The first step was to drill and ream a 5/8 hole in the center. One end will be threaded 3/4-16 and the other 1-20 but I needed to be able to hold them in the lathe to turn the diameters and thread them and I wanted the hole to be as large as it could be but smaller than the finished size.

 

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Then I cut a piece off... again, about twice as thick as it will be but otherwise it wouldn't grip well on the little expanding arbor. This is the end that will be threaded 1-20. Finished it has to be about 1/4" thick because a banjo bolt will be screwed into it.

 

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After it was threaded, I tried the cap on. These threads can be a tiny bit loose because I will lube them with soldering flux and solder the cap in place. A little extra space for the solder will not be wasted.

 

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This is what it looks like assembled. There is a lot of extra material here that will come off in the finishing steps.

 

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Hi Joe, I am pleased to see that your threading has gone a lot better than the threading of the oil pump parts on my Humberette! I realised that I hadn't done any threading on my Myford lathe for a while and needed to read up about it again. My first problem was that my thread dial indicator wasn't turning. As it was a fine BSF 32 TPI  thread I was machining I could not see that the seized dial indicator was driving the lathe apron forward. This confused me for some time before I 'twigged'.. After a few hours of trying to free off the thread dial, I gave up and left the thread dial indicator off the lathe. I then tried cutting the thread without the indicator by keeping the apron connected to the leadscrew,  reversing the lathe and powering the lathe tool back after winding the cross slide away from the brass. After inspecting the cut it appeared that the thread pitch was about 64 TPI! Looking at the instructions for the gear cutting gearbox last night it seems that I have, in the past, reversed one of the gears that to obtain fine feeds. I had forgotten all about this. Hopefully, today I can try again and be more successful. To date I have made a few bits of scrap metal and wasted about a week!

 

Looking at the last photo of yours - What is the razor blade for?

 

The expanding mandrels you use, are they readily available? I have looked on eBay and the only ones that have found are a set available from India! Should I be searching using a different name for them?

 

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Until about a year ago I'd never used the threading dial. I did exactly what you are doing. I think that threading is one of those jobs that definitely gets easier the more you do it. The instruction plate attached to the apron of my lathe actually has an error in it that thoroughly confused me. It says "use any line for even numbers" when it should say "use any line for even numbers divisible by four". I was cutting 6 tpi and got a double start thread. I'd always wondered how those were made and managed to find out entirely by accident.

 

The razor blade is just lying there.  The wood background is the cover on my surface plate and it tends to attract little bits around the shop.

 

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Joe, thanks for the information. I have had another wasted day and a bit more scrap! I am going to take your advice and use some round bar to start with, and try just cutting some simple male threads first, rather than trying to cut the 32 TPI internal thread in the brass tube.

 

Was there another name for the 'expanding arbour'?

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1 hour ago, Mike Macartney said:

Was there another name for the 'expanding arbour'?

Expanding collet, I believe.

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Expanding collets are slightly different but work in about the same way. I'll photograph the set of arbors and some collets to show the difference.

 

Threading brass tube can be a headache. The alloy used for making tubing is not as easily machined as the "free machining" C360 brass. The extremely fine threads were used because they are shallow, an important point when working with tubing.

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)

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The expanding arbors are on the right. The 1" and bigger sizes are intended to be held in a 1" collet. On the left are two expanding collets.

 

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This is the cap end for the side that will hold a spring to push the filter screen.

 

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Here are the two caps. The spring is centered by the projection. I made a trip to the local hardware store to see if I could find a spring that will work - without any luck so I picked a spring from McMaster Carr and turned the OD of the projection to fit..

 

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And, I made a holding fixture for the caps so I can machine them. Ordinarily, I'd make this out of steel but it is only going to be used twice but this time I got lazy.

 

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Turned down and threaded to receive the caps. I will knurl these caps and knurling puts a tremendous amount of pressure on the workpiece so I have to be able to grip it in my big chuck.

 

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Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)

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Thanks for the details of the expanding arbors. I contacted the 'Breakheart Tool Company' to see if they have a UK agent. Unfortunately, they don't, and the shipping costs are more than the cost of the arbors!

I sorted the problem with the screw threading. Basically, I was being an idiot! (or perhaps a senior moment) It took Jane to sort out what I was doing wrong. I will explain what I did wrong on my next Humberette post.

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You might try RDG TOOLS. I think they are in Yorkshire. I bought some involute cutters from them and their service was outstanding. Actually, the shipping was less than the VAT so I actually got them for less than a UK resident would have to pay (which don't think is very fair, but I don't make the laws).

 

j

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The next step was to solder the ends into the caps. I do this on a little propane camping stove. The idea it to heat everything up together so the temperature is uniform and the solder will flow into the threads.

 

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Then back to the lathe to face off the ends and turn the finished outside diameter.

 

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With that done, I knurled the cap.

 

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I also bored the center hole and threaded it 1"-20. This is the cap that will be attached to one of the banjo fittings so the top plate has to be unusually thick to receive the threads of the banjo bolt. None of that will show from the outside.

 

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I lapped the top of the cap to make sure it is perfectly flat and I'll use fiber washers between both surfaces of the banjo fitting. I still have to put in the grooves for a hook spanner so they can be tightened a bit more than hand-tight when I assemble the pieces.

 

You can just make out the solder line between the two pieces ... but I'm not worried about that. While I was doing this one of my friends was working on something he's making ... he's one of my two local friends that know old cars and likes to kid me about my sometimes "over the top" productions. Even he agreed that you'd never see the solder line unless you knew where to look for it.

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
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Looks great Joe!

 

I was soldering too.... but mine wasn't as fun - broken fitting in the basement which left

about 6" of water.

 

T.

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Hello Joe, How much solder bleed through did you get on your threads (on the inside)?  What a nice job you have done!  Did you use silver solder?  If  yes, what flavor of silver solder did you use?  Now Terry, what you suggest for solder practice is not fun even a little bit!  That flood issue is something that anyone with a basement absolutely dreads!  Are you back together or just getting started?  Do you use your basement as living space or as storage?  Of course, there is always more to the story when it comes to catastrophes.  Good luck in anyway or form, I feel your pain!

Al

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I used ordinary 50/50 lead solder. I don't think something like this needs the strength of silver solder and the lead stuff is so much easier to work with. In this case, I purposely made the threads a little loose in order to give the solder room to flow. I'm not certain that was the right thing to do... at least I should not have done it exactly as I did. By soldering from the outside of the cap I got some run-through to the inside. In both cases, more than I wanted so I flipped the cap over and heated it again so that the solder flowed down. Were I to do it again, I would solder from the inside since run-through to the surface I am going to machine is meaningless. Both caps will come out fine but I'm learning a technique as I do them.

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All taken care of! I had to re-install the water meter. One of the fittings on the pipe that comes in from the street service failed.  Most of  the water went to one end of the basement

Fortunately no damage to speak of we keep the food storage, pellets etc. all up on pallets. Joys of a 125 year old home!

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Mine is 300 years old...but I have to admit that a lot of it, especially the plumbing, is a lot newer!

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Well I'll be!!!  I thought I lived in an old home, but out of us three, I live in the new home as my home is only 120 years young! I will post a front shot of my home as it is now.  But if you can conjure up in your mind this picture; in 1983 a dam broke up river of us about 15 miles.  Now as you look at the front of my house, imagine water up to and just lapping at the top of my front door threshold.  Water was about 4' high around my house.  I didn't have a good 1983, at all!  I was just lucky that my great-grand-dad had lived here since the 1860's and had survived several dam breaks so when he built this house he put it up on a full standing foundation, unusual in our area as most early homes were flat on the ground.  In our small town, we now only have two old homes standing, mine and one other up the street, the flood of '83 destroyed 22 homes total.  It was several years before we got back to some form of normality in my little town.  OK, Joe, sorry to detract from the talk of solder and brass and threads, (my story was brought back to my memory by Terry's water issue).  Back to the rebuilding of the Mitchell.

Al

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Edited by alsfarms
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I like it... and everything is relative. A good friend of mine lives in Salt Lake City. Years ago he was asked to donate to a fund to save a local "historic" home... OK he said, "when was it built?" "1915" was the answer... his response was: "1915! practically every house in my neighborhood was that old or a lot older!"

 

Here's mine, taken last summer when a dead ash tree had just fallen over, missing the house by inches. I was in the middle of installing the windows I'd made which is why the last two on the right are "blank" - I hadn't gotten to those when the tree came down.

 

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Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
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You might try RDG TOOLS.

Thank you Joe. I will give them a try.

Your house looks very interesting and unusual.

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Joe, is the design of your house some form of a "Dutch" style?  Seems that I have seen or heard reference to your roof style as something "Dutch", maybe I am dreaming?  Nice old home you have.  I bet it could tell more stories than the Mitchell you are working on.

Al

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13 hours ago, alsfarms said:

Well I'll be!!!  I thought I lived in an old home, but out of us three, I live in the new home as my home is only 120 years young! I will post a front shot of my home as it is now.  But if you can conjure up in your mind this picture; in 1983 a dam broke up river of us about 15 miles.  Now as you look at the front of my house, imagine water up to and just lapping at the top of my front door threshold.  Water was about 4' high around my house.  I didn't have a good 1983, at all!  I was just lucky that my great-grand-dad had lived here since the 1860's and had survived several dam breaks so when he built this house he put it up on a full standing foundation, unusual in our area as most early homes were flat on the ground.  In our small town, we now only have two old homes standing, mine and one other up the street, the flood of '83 destroyed 22 homes total.  It was several years before we got back to some form of normality in my little town.  OK, Joe, sorry to detract from the talk of solder and brass and threads, (my story was brought back to my memory by Terry's water issue).  Back to the rebuilding of the Mitchell.

Al

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You got all that water but look at that perfect lawn! 

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It's called a gambrel roof and was very common here in New England in the 18th century. I suspect the Dutch used it to and it may be associated with them in a popular American context but it is actually English in New England. Only the lower part of the first floor dates from 1703. The right side of the house is an addition done, I believe, in 1752. I built the roof and the 2nd floor. It was very difficult to replicate the proper angles for the roof and meet the building code which required 8' ceilings. Downstairs, the clearance under the beams in the kitchen and dining room is only about 6'3". Officially, it is the Joseph Olney House. Olney was a prominent name around here in the 18th century. One of RI's Revolutionary War heroes was Capt. Stephen Olney who was, I think, a nephew of Joseph. Stephen Olney's house is also still standing and on the same road although the name of my part of the road was changed in the late 30s. It's now Ridge Road but my deed says it is Smithfield Road. This followed the English practice of naming a road for the town it went to... in this case Smithfield which was one of the 5 towns that originally made up RI. The road dates from the 1670s which is why the house is so close to it. It has been widened and, of course, there wasn't much traffic in the early 18th-century.

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42 minutes ago, alsfarms said:

Joe, is the design of your house some form of a "Dutch" style?  Seems that I have seen or heard reference to your roof style as something "Dutch", maybe I am dreaming?  Nice old home you have.  I bet it could tell more stories than the Mitchell you are working on.

Al

That style of home is popular here in the older villages of New England. My town, Dartmouth, was incorporated in 1664 and there  are still a few homes like that and a fair amount of Quaker meeting houses all spread out in town. I have heard houses of that style called “garrison gambrels” , just gambrels, or barn roofs. I believe the true garrison gambrel homes have at least a story and a half side wall before the roof starts. Joe’s house just screams old New England when I look at it. My sisters house in town is well over 200 years old but is the more traditional two story farm house type. Lots of granite foundations around here.

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A garrison house has an overhanging 2nd floor. It's an early 17th-century style. They get the name because in each village one house would be designated the "garrison house". It often had thick walls and the overhang. When attacked, the local people would retreat to the garrison house. The overhang allowed the defenders to fire down at the doors and windows... or such is the lore associated with it. Actually, overhanging 2nd and 3rd stories were common in Europe at the time so I'm not all that convinced. There are a few remaining true garrison houses. One I'm familiar with looks quite conventional but the walls are about 8" thick and made of hewn logs. They would be impossible to penetrate with the weapons available in the 17th century. If you are curious about what NE was like in the period just before my house was built, look up King Philips War...

 

Edit... I think Dartmouth was one of the towns abandoned during King Philips War. Smithfield was... the oldest houses all post-date the war when the town was effectively wiped out. Mine is the 2nd or 3rd oldest house in town. The oldest house is just down the street from me and is the headquarters of the local historical society. Like mine, only part of it is very early.

Edited by JV Puleo (see edit history)
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This is a very interesting thread you have us on Joe.  I do thoroughly enjoy antique automobiles, but also history.  Of course old machinery and houses are also a serious interest for me.  From a historical aspect, I do have one family line that is 16th century American and originated in the general area of New Jersey, Rhode Island and the other near surrounding states.  That family line is western European being German, Belgian and Dutch.  "Conk" is that family name.  I still have many long distance relatives in that area.  I will post a picture of probably the oldest structure in my home town.  It was originally the abode of my double great-grand-dad (father of the builder of my home).  Back in the 1860's-70's, when my town was settled, my family like most other families owned near a city block for a home site and that was so with my double great grand dad.  Property holdings were broken up as the family evolved and now I own the original home site and in the back of my 1 acre lot still stands the original log home that my family lived in until a newer adobe home was constructed, (now long gone) then the next home is my 1899 home.  It must have been a labor of hard work to build the log cabin as the nearest trees and mountain range to get trees was 25 miles away.  The log cabin originally had an upper floor and loft to serve a a sleeping area for children, (roof and loft was modified in the 1920's).  My garden surrounds this log structure and we can grow some great tomatoes!  I now use the log cabin as storage for several car projects parts.  It is my desire to renovate and make useful again, this log cabin, specific  to the era that it was first built.  You guys, on the east coast, have the rich early Colonial history.  We in the West only have the "Wild West" (newer heritage from the mid 1800's).  This chat is a fun diversion while we get back up to steam on the car stuff.

Al

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