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Alright - so I was drawing out this multibar damascus billet today, I turn from the gas forge to the hammer - and what do ya know - the hammer is already out - even though I haven't even touched the damn thing... Next thing - the hammer slowly keep sliding further and further down until it eventually hits the anvil surface. I turn it off and open the cover over the rear piston - and test it by putting in some oil directly - and starting it again. It performs better - but still can't pull the hammer all the way up into it's chamber - and still slowly keeps falling down closer and closer towards the anvil. Is this a gasket problem - or has the piston become so worn - it is no longer able to keep sufficielt vacuum / pressure or whatnot to keep the hammer all they way up? I did a quick check of the lever that lets in air and stuff in order to make the hammer go - but nothing seemed loose or anything... everything solid and tight as usual. I've attached links to a couple of short clips of the hammer in action onto YouTube so that the problem can be seen visually: From distance: Closeup: Any help and input is greatly appreciated! I have this guy waiting patiently for his knife - and I need to resolve this problem ASAP. Sincerely, Alveprins.
Now that my power hammer is sitting on its new home and securely bolted to the new foundation, I am working on fixing the other minor issues that it has. Originally it has been setup with the motor hanging off the side, going to a countershaft mounted above the hammer, and then to the rear pulley, to slow down the speed of rotation. This is a bit janky and unwieldly, and the jurryrigged idler pulley for the slackbelt clutch isnt the most responsive. In order to fix this I will be making a new motor mount to mount the motor down low and behind the hammer, building a new idler arm for the slack belt clutch, and fabricating a mount for it, and re-building the treadle linkage. I first found myself a proper 900 RPM motor, as the original spec called for in motorized fairbanks power hammers as opposed to lineshaft driven. This motor is ginormous, over 100lbs and easily twice the size of the motor that was on it, but it's still actually only a 2hp motor. I've got a large angle bracket which I will drill and tap the rear column of the power hammer in order to bolt down, and then due to the size and weight of the motor, I will probably have a rear leg at the back of the shelf going down to the floor as well. I already have a 3 inch pulley with lips on the edge which will be used as the tensioner / idler pulley. The rear pulley is 13 inches in diameter, which means that the motor pulley should be 5 inches in diameter to get the specified 350 BPM. Herein lies my first challenge. I have looked everywhere, and can not find a 5 inch crowned drive pulley for a 2.5 inch wide flat belt which will fit on a 1 1/8 motor shaft. Thus my first bit of work is to make a new drive pulley. I bought an aluminum round 5 inches in diameter and 6 inches long to be my pulley blank. In order to turn the face of the pulley concentric to the motor shaft, the first thing I had to do was create myself a mandrel the same diameter as the motor shaft to mount the pulley on once I have the center bored and reamed to 1.125 inches. I chose to make the mandrel first. For the mandrel, I have a piece of 2 inch round stock which has already been drilled and tapped for half inch 13 on the end (and had part of it turned down for some other job, but that can be ignored) I've done very little machining, even though I've had my lathe for 9 months now. Getting objects perfectly centered is still a bit of a chore, but I got the 2 inch round almost perfect, so I felt that I was off to a good evening in the shop =) My lathe is an 1890 Prentice Brother's lathe and has no gradations on any of the dials, and only horizontal feed, no traverse. I run it nice and slow and take my time, and a lot of measurements. Once I got really close to the final dimension I was barely skimming a thousandth off the top to zero in on 1.125. After this cut it read 1.126 on my digital caliper, and 1.124 on my old brown and sharpe vernier scale caliper. Not bad for an ancient hunk of iron, although it took me a large number of passes. Good thing I dont have to make money doing this !