Wednesday, March 01, 2006

at the shop

Back at the shop, much was accomplished. I finished a set of custom spade bits for the drill press, and Lars worked on his slab cutting bandsaw. It took several hours, but I finally finished the gear tooth cutter. The only pieces remaining to be done are a couple of differently sized guide rack and pinions, but those can be made at the site.

I was looking around for a counter-weight for the gear tooth cutter, and Lars had the brilliant idea of using a bowling ball he had in a junk pile somewhere (no, those of you who know Lars, it is not that bowling ball). I attached a big hook to it and hung it on the cable; It worked great! Hanging from the cable, it reminded me of a wrecking ball, so I suggested that we could use it as such, suspended by our hoist, in the event that we declare the project a total failure.

Alas, we had to give up on the bandsaw. The devices presented multiple unsolved challenges, but death was not pronounced until the motor started to smoke. It just didn't have enough power, or maybe it did have enough power but ran the blade too fast. We threw it into a snow bank where it will remain for several days at least. I am confident, however, that it will one day rise again, better, stronger, slower.

Instead of the bandsaw, we modified a (borrowed!) 20 inch bar chainsaw with a custom shoe plate for guiding perpendicular cuts. This will have to do for slab cutting, although it requires cutting from both sides and hoping for good alignment.

No comments: