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Posts posted by deker

  1. John,


     I haven't been around here in quite a while, but saw this and figured I'd chime in. That looks like the baby brother to my Buffalo rolling mill. I have a bit of history on mine. It was bought by a jewelry manufacturer in VA and electrified in ~1947 (Not pictured is the enormous 5HP motor that sits on top of the platform above the gearbox on the right). Following that, it was maybe briefly used and then put into storage until I bought it a few years ago. I found a few stamps that include "13", so I'm guessing it was originally made in 1913.


    Mine has a clutch mechanism to disconnect power to the rollers which would be actuated via a large handle that attaches to a shaft at the end of the table by the rolling head (you can see some of the linkage under the table). That handle is broken off on mine and the movement of that clutch assembly is very stiff. I assume that's how the handle got broken. :) I do intend to fix that eventually so I have a better mechanical power disengagement in the even something wedges. Right now, the "safety" consists of a switch mounted on the rolling head (again, not pictured since I had the motor, etc, removed to move the mill when it was taken) that is connected to a kind of bizarre phase switching matrix that will reverse 2 phases of the motor to shift the rolls into reverse when it's thrown. This is less than ideal, but was at least relatively well thought out. There are buffer coils of some kind that help dissipate the voltage spike when you do this, though I was warned to shut it down before reset since they're only on one side of the switch matrix. :mellow: 


    Once I put a new flat belt on it, it does a tremendous amount of work. I usually stop forging stock on the press/hammer at about 1/2"-5/8" thick and just roll from there. I tend to move the adjustment handle 1/4-1/2 turn per pass (depending on stock width), and can usually get 3-4 passes per heat. I seem to recall when I measured the adjustment screw that it was .020" per revolution, but don't quote me on that...


    I've been doing fine with the stock rolls, but I've been considering taking the head apart to blueprint the rolls in case I ever need to remake them (or in case I come across a piece of H13 or 4140 big enough to just cut new ones on principal and retire the originals with the original leather belt.


    I'd never seen another one like it, so I'm glad to know that there's more out there! 




    • Like 1
  2. Cal,

     I remember seeing that mill years ago. It's a really nice design, and a lot more compact than mine. I had come back here several times trying to find the pictures you posted before and couldn't. Thanks for reposting them, I'm saving them this time for future reference ;)


    Of course, I practically stole mine, and love the fact that it's giant, and old. :) The motor is a MASSIVE, old, 5HP 3ph that mounts on the stand on the right (it was off in this picture since I was moving it in). It was originally built in 1913 I think, and was electrified in 1947 by the previous owner (a jewelry factory). They resurfaced the rolls, used it for a couple of months, and then it sat until I got it at auction. One of these days I'd like to build something that will do wider than the 5" or so I can handle now, but that's down the road a ways.




    • Like 1
  3. David,

     I've heard good things about the Black Fox grinders from Bruce Bump. I definitely trust Bruce's opinion on tools. He also worked with the Black Fox folks on the design, so you know it's had input and testing from somebody who knows how a knifemaker uses a grinder.

  4. Nice score! Whatever you do for a contact wheel will cost more than the machine, but be well worth it. If you need something custom made, or if the parts from the manufacturer are too pricey, call Sunray. I had them do the contact wheel for my surface grinder conversion and they price was less than half of what Contact Rubber Corp. wanted to charge me. The 1100RPM motor seems a bit slow unless it's got a monster drive pulley.


    Oh, and Alan, if you look at the fact that the Space Saver was intended to replace huge backstand grinders, it IS a lot smaller. :)

    • Thanks 1
  5. 18 hours ago, Jeremy Blohm said:

    Wow.....how did I miss this thread. About a week ago me and a buddy of mine were talking about making Damascus for an AR 15. This is straight up inspiring!!!!!!!!

    If you know an outfit that would make them, I can make the steel! :)

  6. Just now, AndyB said:

    Ah ok.  Wasn't sure some of them ones I've seen at least had an extra safety on it.  How ever I do like the looks of this one.  I could only assume that you may offer different assortments of patterns on this?

    The current plan is for a single production run set up like this one, so they will all be random for the frame, etched deeply and blued, and twist for the slide etched not quite as deep and left "au naturale"

  7. 3 minutes ago, AndyB said:

    I don't own guns any more for good measure, how ever with the way the damacus steel is and the pattern with the steel.  Holy crap.  What a beauty.  I do have a fondness for the 45.  I gotta ask though that particular 1911.  Do you have a safety switch next to the slide by the hammer on that model?  I've only seen the WW2 military issue variety of 45.  But nah I love the way it looks.  


    As far as I know it's the standard design M1911, so it's got the thumb safety, the grip safety, and an internal disconnector.

  8. Thanks everybody! Alan is right, it's Desert Ironwood on the grip panels.

    Unfortunately, I can't say who's producing them or anything yet. This picture is the first completed prototype, so we've gotten past that major hurdle. There's still a lot of steps to go to get to production (not least of which is me buying a ton and a half of steel and burning a LOT of propane :) ). It will likely be some number of months until more info is available, but as soon as I got the OK to say "Look! We're making 1911s!", I did. :-D

    It's been about a year and a half of shop upgrades, work, machine building, testing different steel mixes, getting the HT right, etc. and it's been REALLY hard to keep my damned mouth shut about it!

  9. For well over a year now, I've been working on a "Secret Project" I will be making steel for. It's been the cause of a lot of new stuff in the shop, and a lot of learning and hard work as well.

    Well, I'm finally at a point where I'm allowed to let the cat peek out of the proverbial bag. There's still a long way to go, and I won't be able to divulge much in the way of specific details for a while, but I'm proud to say that the steel in the attached picture is from my shop and that there will be a LOT more of it coming over the next year or so that will be made into more gorgeous 1911 pistols like the one shown here.

    I'll post more details over the next several months as things progress, but it feels great to finally be able to tell you all what I've been working on!

    This is something that I've wanted to see made from my steel for YEARS, and I'm honored and overwhelmed that instead of just a few, we'll be doing a whole production run.



    • Like 5
  10. On 5/18/2018 at 3:09 PM, Raymond Richard said:

    deker, you know I just can't find any decent forging sandals in this day and age. As much as I loved to hand forge those days are behind me now. Old has taken over........

    I can certainly understand that. It's a shame though, you have always been one of a few 'smiths I'd have been willing to actually BUY a knife from. Life just never got around to my being able to afford it...

  11. When I needed a custom contact wheel for my surface grinder conversion, I checked first with Contact Rubber Corp. They wanted $1k for the wheel I specified. Sunray did it for less than half that, and then when I screed up and tore up the tire, they recovered it for me for about $150. Devin Carswell has been the rep I've dealt with and he's fantastic. 


    Add another thumbs up for Sunray from me!

  12. Ok, so I didn't get more video. I got on a roll and the GoPro wasn't in the shop. It got drawn to 2-1/4" square, then the section to be twisted was octagoned, and into Screwcifer it went!


    Drawn out to ~1.75"x1.625"x23"


    The untwisted ends were trimmed, and onto the surface grinder to get cleaned up. Came out to 1.695"x1.365"x19". Customer spec was for 1.5"x1.25"x16", but they're fine rough machining it down.20180114_120152.jpg

    And a bit of a closeup. The 3 colors of steel in this one are going to make it look really nice. Also, once the customer's final machining is done, it will be a good bit more narrow, so there should be a good bit more of the fun bits on the inside.


    The other size needed for this order is a slab 1"x5"x10.5". Here's a picture of the matching slab to go with this bar. It gives a better idea of the color contrast this steel mix gives. Ignore the big funky looking smudge across this billet, that's just a remnant from where I used paracord to hang it in the etching tank. (Note: This picture was taken with a flash, but it shows the color contrast much better)




    • Like 1
  13. 2 hours ago, owen bush said:

    thats interesting. makes me wonder what my hydraulic rig would do?



     The press is around 45ton and it seems to handle it fine. Or did you mean a twisting rig?

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