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Learning to run the mill, machinist help please

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Replies

  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    I’ve been practicing on some pipe. And I have some smooth round to practice cutting dovetails.
    should have all the goodies CPJ recommended in tomorrow, the new vise and collets will help get better cuts. My Glock 26 project parts should be in by the end of the week. But I don’t know if I’ll be ready to dive into it just yet.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    FedEx brought me a pallet full of goodies today for the mill. Learned how to square the head and vice today. It was pretty easy, worked just like the videos I watched. It will take me a little while to learn how to use everything, more videos to watch and more practice before I go to whacking on a real gun. Starting to get pumped, I might actually be able to learn this.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    Tim, that 'Machinery's Handbook' will give you feeds and speeds for most anything you'll ever encounter running a lathe or mill. I really, REALLY recommend you get a CD or hard copy of it. There is more info in that book than you will EVER use, and will have you doing stuff, like MAKING COIL SPRINGS RIGHT THE FIRST TIME ON A LATHE! That right there is some super fun! Even has the annealing, hardening, and tempering info for just about anything you'll ever run into, too. Grind your own tools; the info not only shows HOW, but explains WHY and is VERY detailed. And lots of info on making your own tools and jigs for machining. I've used that jig making info a LOT over the years.

    If you need speeds for machining that your mill doesn't support, then look at making your own pulleys for doing it. With a lathe, you can make your own easily, and since most are aluminum, easily turned out on the lathe. Don't let a little thing like 'I need a different speed' hold you back; you have tools to make that speed you need happen. And anything you make like that will teach you a lot. The lathe and a boring bar will cut keyways in that aluminum just fine, too. Slow, but it works and doesn't cost an arm and a leg to ge
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
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  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    timc said:
    FedEx brought me a pallet full of goodies today for the mill. Learned how to square the head and vice today. It was pretty easy, worked just like the videos I watched. It will take me a little while to learn how to use everything, more videos to watch and more practice before I go to whacking on a real gun. Starting to get pumped, I might actually be able to learn this.
    Oh, there's no doubt you can learn this! Watch lots of youtube videos, practice on stuff that doesn't matter, and get some experience. It's one heck of a fun hobby, not really difficult to learn if you pay attention to detail, and really is one of the MOST rewarding hobbies out there. Making your own stuff rocks, and when it works a LOT better than what you can buy, IT REALLY ROCKS!
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    tennmike said:
    Tim, that 'Machinery's Handbook' will give you feeds and speeds for most anything you'll ever encounter running a lathe or mill. I really, REALLY recommend you get a CD or hard copy of it. There is more info in that book than you will EVER use, and will have you doing stuff, like MAKING COIL SPRINGS RIGHT THE FIRST TIME ON A LATHE! That right there is some super fun! Even has the annealing, hardening, and tempering info for just about anything you'll ever run into, too. Grind your own tools; the info not only shows HOW, but explains WHY and is VERY detailed. And lots of info on making your own tools and jigs for machining. I've used that jig making info a LOT over the years.

    If you need speeds for machining that your mill doesn't support, then look at making your own pulleys for doing it. With a lathe, you can make your own easily, and since most are aluminum, easily turned out on the lathe. Don't let a little thing like 'I need a different speed' hold you back; you have tools to make that speed you need happen. And anything you make like that will teach you a lot. The lathe and a boring bar will cut keyways in that aluminum just fine, too. Slow, but it works and doesn't cost an arm and a leg to ge
    Thanks for the info, ordered the book this morning. I found a used one at less than half the price of new which is always cool!
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    You stick  your head in that book and we won't be hearing from you for a couple of months! :D The material it contains really is that interesting! And good snag on half price, too!
    Shooting is fun, and shooting with stuff you've made yourself to fit you to a 'T' is all gravy! That first little .38-55 I put together on and old NEF 20 gauge single shot shotgun frame is still my favorite. Doesn't look like much, but it's taken deer, and shot a lot of paper, cans, and targets of opportunity. And with the powderpuff Trail Boss loads, it's like shooting a .22 WMR!
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    tennmike said:
    You stick  your head in that book and we won't be hearing from you for a couple of months! :D The material it contains really is that interesting! And good snag on half price, too!
    Shooting is fun, and shooting with stuff you've made yourself to fit you to a 'T' is all gravy! That first little .38-55 I put together on and old NEF 20 gauge single shot shotgun frame is still my favorite. Doesn't look like much, but it's taken deer, and shot a lot of paper, cans, and targets of opportunity. And with the powderpuff Trail Boss loads, it's like shooting a .22 WMR!
    That’s the kinda stuff I’m looking for, making my own parts, building my own gun and it actually runs well and is a tack driver.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    The more guys that are doing what you're doing, getting into gunsmith type machining, is good to see. It IS a kind of steep $$$ curve to get started, but there are lots of used machines out there that with a little TLC can be brought back to life and last for decades. And it builds a skill set that will always have use, and not just for firearms stuff. Everyone can't be a master machinist ( I'll never be that) but we can at least be competent ones that build stuff that makes us happy, and there's a lot going for that in and of itself.
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 7,026 Senior Member
    True 'dat.....I'm not a machinist and will never be a toolmaker, but..........

    My wife had a part on her car break. "Dealer item", $38 and 7 days to ship. The car couldn't run without it, and we needed her car.

    WTH???? It's a washer with a boss. 

    $2.00 worth of material, 1/2 hour of my time, and I made 3. That's been 4 years ago. I still have the 2 backups.

    Mike


    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    tennmike said:
    The more guys that are doing what you're doing, getting into gunsmith type machining, is good to see. It IS a kind of steep $$$ curve to get started, but there are lots of used machines out there that with a little TLC can be brought back to life and last for decades. And it builds a skill set that will always have use, and not just for firearms stuff. Everyone can't be a master machinist ( I'll never be that) but we can at least be competent ones that build stuff that makes us happy, and there's a lot going for that in and of itself.
    It is expensive, I have to admit quite a bit more than I first thought
    to get started. But once I get into something there is no turning back.
    my long term plan to get my shop outfitted is what drives me through each phase. Some might think I’m silly to spend this much embarking on something I know nothing about. I only had the desire to learn. I’ll be the same with the lathe I’m sure but like you say it’s all about having fun.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • MichakavMichakav Senior Member Posts: 2,726 Senior Member
    timc said:

    It is expensive, I have to admit quite a bit more than I first thought
    to get started. But once I get into something there is no turning back.
    my long term plan to get my shop outfitted is what drives me through each phase. Some might think I’m silly to spend this much embarking on something I know nothing about. I only had the desire to learn. I’ll be the same with the lathe I’m sure but like you say it’s all about having fun.
    Thats exactly how I got started on firearms. Not knowing something about a passion is only grounds to seek knowledge!
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    True 'dat.....I'm not a machinist and will never be a toolmaker, but..........

    My wife had a part on her car break. "Dealer item", $38 and 7 days to ship. The car couldn't run without it, and we needed her car.

    WTH???? It's a washer with a boss. 

    $2.00 worth of material, 1/2 hour of my time, and I made 3. That's been 4 years ago. I still have the 2 backups.

    Mike


    Wife opened the garage door one morning and ripped the screws out of the mounting brackets for the door drive. Took about an hour or so to make another one, no issues since.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    Michakav said:
    timc said:

    It is expensive, I have to admit quite a bit more than I first thought
    to get started. But once I get into something there is no turning back.
    my long term plan to get my shop outfitted is what drives me through each phase. Some might think I’m silly to spend this much embarking on something I know nothing about. I only had the desire to learn. I’ll be the same with the lathe I’m sure but like you say it’s all about having fun.
    Thats exactly how I got started on firearms. Not knowing something about a passion is only grounds to seek knowledge!
    Scares the snot out of my wife when I decide to jump into something like this but she stays pretty supportive overall.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    True 'dat.....I'm not a machinist and will never be a toolmaker, but..........

    My wife had a part on her car break. "Dealer item", $38 and 7 days to ship. The car couldn't run without it, and we needed her car.

    WTH???? It's a washer with a boss. 

    $2.00 worth of material, 1/2 hour of my time, and I made 3. That's been 4 years ago. I still have the 2 backups.

    Mike


    Now THAT is what I'm talking about. "I need it NOW! I have the skill set and the tools and material to make it. It has to be done NOW, so I do it. Might not look factory original, but if it works and works well, then it's all good!"

    I've made parts like that which I needed on the farm that are no longer available due to age and/or design changes. I've made some other farm folk happy with that, too. Fixing otherwise very serviceable equipment with cheap and fast to make parts makes the kinds of friends you want, and they'll be glad to help you out and lend a hand when you're in a tight spot. That's the kind of living that makes life worthwhile.
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    Started working on the Glock 26 project today. Completing the lower was nothing, I would have done a couple of these a long time ago if I would have known how easy it was. Still waiting on the rest of the parts to come in, slide will be here Saturday and the rest on Monday/Tuesday. Still haven’t decided what I want to do to the slide, I thought about cutting some ports in the slide and porting the barrel. Any suggestions?
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    Ports in the slide are lint pockets to hang up the slide unless your holster is really good at keeping that stuff out. Porting the barrel; I'd pass on that. That is one area where you can start getting lead/brass spitting back in your face. It isn't just an angle cut; the front of each of those ports has to be relieved to prevent shaving bullets as they pass the ports. Diamond files and at least a 5X and preferably 10X jewler's loupe is gonna be your best friend doing that. It's one of those jobs that isn't really intuitive as to what goes on, and can bite ya in the butt!
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    edited May 2019 #78
    Good to know, I’ll have to give porting more thought. I do have a nice jewelers loop already.

    cutting the slide is not a worry, I’ve got plenty of handguns to carry so lint doesn’t worry me.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 7,026 Senior Member
    What TennMike said. Relieving the interior edges where the angled ports meet the bore will be a blue blooded witch.

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    Aren't barrel ports usually done with an EDM mill?  That's several thousand dollars' worth of professional-grade equipment with a pretty sophisticated computer program to run it.
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    Teach said:
    Aren't barrel ports usually done with an EDM mill?  That's several thousand dollars' worth of professional-grade equipment with a pretty sophisticated computer program to run it.
    I don’t know but I wouldn’t doubt it.
    too bad, it would be fun to try.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    I have two slides coming, one is already done with serrations cut and edges beveled. The other is a blank squared slide with no markings that I can get creative with. Maybe just some simple cut outs, crop the corners and cut straight serrations on the back end.
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    Teach said:
    Aren't barrel ports usually done with an EDM mill?  That's several thousand dollars' worth of professional-grade equipment with a pretty sophisticated computer program to run it.
    The best ported barrels use EDM just because it is super precision and makes nice 'slicker 'n' snail snot' porting. Before EDM it was a very expensive proposition due to the required long time of hand working to make the ports pass a bullet without shaving it.

    And porting can introduce another phenomenon. The 'gaps' created by porting can cause an otherwise very accurate barrel to spit bullets like tobacco juice all over the place. Bullet tilt from the base would be my best guess given the forces involved, so a LONG bullet would presumably have less problems than short pistol bullets regarding base tilting. But I'm just guessing and thinking about uneven forces. Uneven forces acting at the end of barrel dwell time can make for strange bedfellows, I suspect.
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    Tim, don't know why I missed posting this link to a machinist website, but I did. Getting old and forgetful, I guess. :)  Anyway, I suggest strongly that you join it. It has LOTS of threads on building firearms and accessories, isn't filled with know-it-all knotheads, and the guys have been great with me over a lot of years answering questions. They're good folk to know, and home machining enthusiasts of the best kind. Give them a look-see and join these machinist freaks if you're of a mind to. They're good!


      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    tennmike said:
    Tim, don't know why I missed posting this link to a machinist website, but I did. Getting old and forgetful, I guess. :)  Anyway, I suggest strongly that you join it. It has LOTS of threads on building firearms and accessories, isn't filled with know-it-all knotheads, and the guys have been great with me over a lot of years answering questions. They're good folk to know, and home machining enthusiasts of the best kind. Give them a look-see and join these machinist freaks if you're of a mind to. They're good!


    Thanks for the link, looks like a pretty good forum, I signed up, I need all the help I can get!
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 27,395 Senior Member
    Get started in some of their non gun projects and you'll become a 'machine shop hermit'! :D
      I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer”
    ― Douglas Adams
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    tennmike said:
    Get started in some of their non gun projects and you'll become a 'machine shop hermit'! :D
    The wife will probably like me better if I do!
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    Getting close to making a real cut. This afternoon’s practice is about the size cut I want to make in the top of the slide.the cut came out square and smooth, my best yet. The top and the slides along with the serrations on the back end of the slide I’m about ready for, Still iffy on bevels on the edges and front of the slide. I was using a 1/4” end mill, is this about right or should I go smaller?


    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 7,026 Senior Member
    There comes a point in life that regardless of equipment, hardware , software, etc...

    you're gonna need an assortment of polishing stones. Down to 1200 grit. No kidding.  "Fine" edge radius in tight quarters is tough , and square corners from a "facing" direction ain't happening.

    Gerschwinn (?spelling) is a good brand of polishing stone, available in various grits.

    I'm not convinced that firearm work requires the same finesse as injection mold work, but they're related somewhat. You need a good set of polishing stones. And patience....always patience.

    Mike


    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • timctimc Senior Member Posts: 6,684 Senior Member
    Definitely some hand finishing I have some good files, didn’t think about polishing stones. I’m just happy cuts are looking good.

    I ordered some 45 degree chamfer end mills to cut the corners this new hobby is getting expensive...
    timc - formerly known as timc on the last G&A forum and timc on the G&A forum before that and the G&A forum before that.....
    AKA: Former Founding Member
  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 7,026 Senior Member
    Files are the workhorses. My day ,today, was spent deburring parts  with a polishing stone  that I'd already filed. That I'd already spent a day CNC milling. I'll be doing the same thing tomorrow.

    "In the body" medical devices are usually hand finished. And that's a trial in concentration and patience.

    I'd love to build auto parts for a few days.............

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
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