Tuesday, February 14, 2006

two weeks to go

The gear tooth cutter is working well, although so far I've only had a chance to use the full process on plywood blanks which splinter quite a bit. It doesn't look like I'll have enough time to make a complete working model of the ice clock, but I will at least make a model of the escapement.

A matter of much debate at the moment is the method we will use for putting the axle assemblies together. The two main techniques under consideration are the sandwich method, two separate axle pieces bonded to either side of a solid gear, and the through-axle method, a single axle piece inserted through a hole in the middle of a gear. Until this week, I had been leaning toward the sandwich method because I thought it would be much easier to get a good waterglue (Lars's term) bond between flat surfaces than between cylindrical surfaces. The biggest drawback of the sandwich method is probably the difficulty of getting the parts aligned correctly.

Now I'm leaning toward the through-axle method, mostly because of Lars's plans to build a mobile drill press and an ice lathe. Those tools should make it much easier to get good cylindrical waterglue bonds, eliminating the only major drawback of the through-axle method.

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