Sunday, March 8, 2015

A pipe tool and a pantograph

A strange mixture of topics. But bear with me. I got so exicted about using the graver on the Taig that I decided to make something useful on it. The result is a pipe tool. This is the thing us pipe smokers use to tamp down the pipe, clean out the bore, and scrape out the pipe bowl.

The handle was turned on the Taig out of Aluminum. Freehand, with the graver. I am not yet in the brass-turning league, I am working my way up to it. The wire stem cleaner is "music wire" from Lowe's. It says "easily bent for school projects." Hah! Easily bent  by Superman, yes. I had to anneal it to forge the loop. The blade is an ex-hacksaw blade ground to shape and moderately sharpened. There is a slot milled in it, and a brass rivet to hold it all together. It works like a charm. Note the taper at the end of the handle; all by hand. It acts as the tamper. Altogether an extension of the Taig lathe.

The above pic will give you and idea of scale.

So the next thing for this week is that I got all exited about Stefan Gottteswinter's YouTube channel (q.g.) because he has a marvellous precision engraving machine. It is based on the pantograph principle. So what is a panotgraph? It is a device that allows you to reduce, or expand,  a basic pattern in a given ratio. If you are trying to make something very small, it is an advantage to make it twice (or more) times larger and then reduce it via pantograph. So what is a pantograph?

A simple paralleogram. The corners can all pivot. Across the bottom bar are a row of holes,   into which I stick a Sharpie. The midpoint gives me a 2:1 redusction. 1/3 of the way across gives me 3:1. To the right of the midpoint, I get magnification. Not too interested in that.

This is a crude mockup. I am using Sharpies in the holes and tracing the image of a crude letter O on the paper; I did the O freehand. The pin next to the big wood O is the tracer end. The whole thing is a flimsy contraption, built in a few hours, but I got the principle of the thing down with it.

Next thing to do is to rebuild this thing out of metal and adapt it to take a Dremel tool. Then I can do some serious stuff. Stay tuned.

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