Tag Line

"Built Dam Strong!"

03 June 2012

Gifts and gaffs; crazy day all around.

Yesterday was terribly frustrating at the start. NONE of the LWSs (Local Welding Supply) locales were open. WTF? How the heck is anyone supposed to get stuff to work on a weekend? Blech. I have to go tomorrow to exchange my welding gas bottle, which is going to take up a good bit of time that I really don't have. 

Enough complaining about things I can't change and just have to deal with. Dave and I made a heck of a lot of progress despite lack of welding ability. 

Dave came out and brought something really awesome. As noted in my previous blog post, the motor on my Che-ese (cheap Chinese) drill press really was sucking. Dave poked around his place and found a new motor, and what a motor it is! The old motor was roughly 4.5" in diameter and supposedly 1/2 horsepower. The new motor is 6" in diameter and rated at 3/4hp! 

It took some cobbling together, but, the new motor got hung off the press with a bracket I salvaged from an old bed frame that fit almost too perfectly with some quick trimming on the bandsaw. Everything went together so well it was nearly scary. Check it out:


Dave got some pics of both motors next to each other. I didn't get a whole lot of pics yesterday because I was actually working. heh Still, that motor is just HUGE!


The only complication was that I needed to get a new belt. I took some string and got a measurement on the pulleys, took it to a really awesome local auto parts place that was something the likes of which I haven't seen in years (in a good way). We checked out a few belts, and ended up with that green Gates belt you see. I love being able to just talk to an intelligent person behind the counter. When I answered the question "What is it going on?" with "A drill press," the guy didn't bat an eye, asking a couple good questions to figure out what kind of press it was and what I needed in the belt. It was such a change from the blank stare you normally get from the salesmonkies behind a chain parts store counter since all they know how to do is look stuff up by vehicle (and barely even that at times). 

The last two issues with the motor are that the motor, while being insanely smooth and VERY powerful spins too fast, even with the slowest combo of pulleys. I am actually looking at getting a "router speed control" off of Amazon and actually a non-contact digital optical tachometer (super cheap actually) to see if I can tone the speed down to run bits over 1/4" (which was determined experimentally with some scrap to see what the limits were on mild steel). The other issue is the ghetto-rigged wiring. I'm not proud of it, but for now, it works. It will be rectified as soon as is practically possible. I am aware that it is not "safe" but I have done a lot worse and survived. heh

Being excited about a working drill press is great and all, but it's not magically going to make all my projects get finished up on their own! Time to get work done! 

Box of bits to make a header from:

That is going to be put together ASAP since the team that needs the header needs it this coming weekend! They have a race and are going to be breaking in a newly built engine that is going to be wearing the header I build. I AM going to make that happen, no matter what!

I spent a while getting the final merged pieces matched up:

And also matched up the small end of the megaphone to the secondary diameter (1.75" since this engine will leave above peak torque):

I'm actually really frustrated with all the exhaust expanders I've tried. The one you see in the pic above is super beefy, but . . . I have to figure out how to get enough torque on it to actually expand 16 and 18g mild steel. That particular model is rated for use with an impact gun, but I didn't have one on hand and I don't like to make that much noise if I can avoid it. Anyway, I managed to match up the ID of the megaphone with the ID of the secondary merge tubes. 

As always, the bends are excellent mandrel pieces from Columbia River Mandrel Bends. The cones for the magaphone are actually Cone Engineering pieces that they stock. If you ever need a cone that CRMB doesn't carry, you can order direct from them. 

Dave was busy while I was working! Here is the start of the captive flanges for his header:

That is stainless 1/4" thick by 2" wide flat stock. Once we get the speed on the drill press under control, we'll drill out the center hole (likely 1 3/8") and the mounting holes (about 1/4"). 

Dave also got busy working on a mockup for his gas tanks (that will be hidden by the bodywork) using CAD:


He also brought a spare head that he doesn't care quite so much about for obvious reasons: 


I think that one chamber needs a few more red Xs, though! 

The head is going to get used to shape the flanges that are going to crush the sealing copper gasket. 

He was working on another makeshift "table" that we set up so he could have a nice workspace:


 He even managed to get in some time with a grinder smoothing out his swingarm. Proof of him working:

And of him being a complete goofball:


 Tomorrow is going to start off with exchanging my bottle at the LWS and heading to McMaster-Carr to pick up retaining springs for the headers I am building and some aluminum rod to repair a brake drum for Mike's CB750, which I'll get some pics of soon enough. Welding on cast aluminum deserves it's own blog post. I got really good at it due to having to fix all sorts of nasty stuff in the Army. It should make for an interesting write up. =)