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Engine Turning, A new Spin (Waa Waaahh)

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by cactus1, Mar 9, 2010.

  1. FlamedChevy
    Joined: Oct 28, 2008
    Posts: 684

    FlamedChevy
    Member

    Very nice job on the panel...I love engine turned items. I have the gauge panel in my wife's 37 chevy and the glove box door turned.
    We use elevator bolts for many things in auto manufacturing ( Hard stops on small machines, Proxy switch accuators and you can put a rubber pad on for rough locators).
     
  2. Ha! Sorry. I'm pretty, but dumb. Ron Howard's brother right?:rolleyes:
     
  3. Chaz
    Joined: Feb 24, 2004
    Posts: 5,016

    Chaz
    Member Emeritus

  4. Those bolts are also used to bolt the hinges on wood garage door panels...
     
  5. Moonglow2
    Joined: Feb 4, 2007
    Posts: 658

    Moonglow2
    Member

    When I did mine I secured my metal sheet to a board and carefully laid out the spacing with a fine point pen (on the wood). Then turning the board on edge I took a large knife and lightly whacked the edge of the board at each mark to put a small crease every swirl width. Then I took a piece of 5/8" thick x 1" board and whacked a groove near the middle of it and then , turning the 1" board on edge, tacked it to a piece of plywood base. I found the smallest diameter of finishing nail I had and nailed it in the upright 1" board right in the knifed groove. The object is to recess the nail enough to leave only a small amount of it above the surface.

    With the nailed guide clamped securely to the drill press and centered behind the burnishing tool I took the first board containing the metal workpiece and aligned the far left knife cut with the nailed guide.

    As I finished the first swirl, I simply slid it to the next knife groove and repeated the next swirl. After completing the first row of swirls you then have to reposition and measure the clamped nail guide further away from the burnishing tool and start the next row.

    If you want to stagger alternate rows adjust left or right of the first row. It's tedious work especially if you do small diameter swirls like I did but the results are worth it. I used 1/2" cratex rods filed down to 3/8" diameter.
     
  6. SinisterCustom
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 8,269

    SinisterCustom
    Member

    Simple tech is always the best....
    Nice work.
     
  7. scootermcrad
    Joined: Sep 20, 2005
    Posts: 12,375

    scootermcrad
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Yep! Done it this way also! Works very well! Lookin' good! Shows the finished results when you're done.
     
  8. rusty_bits
    Joined: Feb 10, 2010
    Posts: 50

    rusty_bits
    Member

    I used a scotch brite pad in a socket and indexed it on my milling machine, it took quite a while. I did some test patches on some scrap before doing the final parts.
     

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  9. spot
    Joined: Jun 10, 2009
    Posts: 204

    spot
    Member
    from usa

    Wow great idea, When i worked my way through college in a machine shop we called this swirl polishing. I did a couple dashes for friends on a CNC after work. I used a short piece of micarta (spelling?) and polishing compound. Usually did 3/8" swirls. Program the cnc, clamp the stainless down paint it with polishing compound and turn the machine loose.
    I can use this method at home. thanks for the tech!!!!
     
  10. -Brent-
    Joined: Nov 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,501

    -Brent-
    Member

    What's the secret for keeping the rows and columns straight?
     
  11. rusty_bits
    Joined: Feb 10, 2010
    Posts: 50

    rusty_bits
    Member

    On the milling machine it is easy, because you have an X,Y table all you have to do is keep track of the distance you are moving in each direction which is read right off the dials. regards,
     
  12. -Brent-
    Joined: Nov 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,501

    -Brent-
    Member

    It looks like he's using a drill press though.
     
  13. I was thinking along those same lines except I was going to use an old valve from a 3 hp Briggs and Stratton engine and glue some 3-M scotch brite pad to it. Same principal different ptocess I guess. Thanks , Mike.
     
  14. rusty_bits
    Joined: Feb 10, 2010
    Posts: 50

    rusty_bits
    Member

    Brent if you are talking about my photos, it is a small Clausing vertical knee mill.
     
  15. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 35,150

    Tman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I have some rather large pieces to do, stll trying to figure out an easy/fast way to index the sheet.
     
  16. SinisterCustom
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 8,269

    SinisterCustom
    Member

    Couldn't a simple grid be laid out right on it....with a scribe? Then as the "swirls" were made, each scribe line would "disappear" from the turning process?
     
  17. Mark H
    Joined: May 18, 2009
    Posts: 1,461

    Mark H
    Member
    from Scotland

    That's how I did it but using a black marker pen instead of a scribe.
    Engine Turning Stainless;
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=364114
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2010
  18. renrob5000
    Joined: Jun 5, 2007
    Posts: 41

    renrob5000
    Member

    When doing it with the mill, using a 1" pattern, I not only overlap by half on the next row down, I index back 1/4". That way the finished pattern has the cool diagonals as well...
     
  19. Hey guys, thanks for all the great replies and ideas on registration of the pattern. Up until now i have only done it "by eye", but given my nature, I want something a little more uniform. I do not want it however, to loose the "hand made" flava'. I have been mulling over several methods in my head. The pegboard idea is one that sprang to mind but it is a bit limited due to the 1" spacing I think, but I could be wrong.

    As far as larger pieces for firewalls and the like are concerned, I was thinking of a radial drill press, which is usually used in furniture making. It would have a larger swing so it would be easier to get to the center of those large panels.
    A mill would be nice, but out of my budget.
     
  20. stude54ht
    Joined: Dec 30, 2007
    Posts: 892

    stude54ht
    Member
    from Spokane WA

    I used peg board to index this turning on my Studebakers firewall. I needed a deeper throat than my drill press allowed so I made a long arm to hold the drill, worked out ok.
     

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  21. rfoundit
    Joined: Mar 12, 2003
    Posts: 8

    rfoundit
    Member
    from Kansas

  22. scootermcrad
    Joined: Sep 20, 2005
    Posts: 12,375

    scootermcrad
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Could you please explain how you actually used the pegboard? Was it attached to the back and then moved around dropping the pegboard hole and the piece into a locating pin?
     
  23. wizzard23
    Joined: Dec 12, 2009
    Posts: 733

    wizzard23
    Member

    I remember reading a magizine artical on this years ago (possably Rod Action). Used old time graph paper (is it still available?) for lay out and some kind of abrasive stick in a drill press to do the job. Probably not much help, but thats the best this old mind can do!:eek:
     
  24. garagerods
    Joined: Dec 15, 2006
    Posts: 451

    garagerods
    Member
    from Omaha

    Great tip....I'm sure Ken is proud!
     
  25. storm king
    Joined: Oct 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,990

    storm king
    Member

    Nice tech tip. I've been doing it that way since the early '80's, no fancy mill, just careful application of a drill press and guide bar "C" clamped to the table.
     
  26. i was just thinking that. i looked into engine turning a few years back but didnt get any further with it than reading about it, but i didnt have a garage either. got one now so im going to expierament.
     
  27. As for spacing, lots of good ideas here, but I bet a hand drawn grid is good enough; since they are round shapes, perfect alignment probably isn't necessary. I'd practice on a piece of scrap until I got the hang of it.
     
  28. Elevator bolts work well for F-1 running board bolts and rear fenders also.
     
  29. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 35,150

    Tman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    After spending the week experimenting with The elevator bolt and various abrasives I went and got a Cratex sample to play with.

    I also used the search with teh words engine+turned and got a few dozen threads. Kevin Lee had one of the best (2 actually). His outcome and mine is that the sandpaper does not work that good. Kevins thread

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=107830&highlight=engine+turning

    And another
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=107101&highlight=engine+turning


    I was working with aluminum sheet. The issues I had with various abrasives were:

    220 PSA sandpaper on elevator bolt; too hard, doesn't conform to the flat sheet to even give you a uniform circular swirl.

    220 PSA on double sided tape like Cactus used; works well, pattern is too faint and you get "ghosting" when you overlap swirls. Too much pressure and the paper slides off

    120 PSA, too coarse for Aluminum, may be better on Stainless.

    Fine Scotchbrite Gray; same issues as with 220, not course enough and wears out/balls up fast

    Medium Scotchbrite, Red; Edges too vague. I did a stainless panel in the past with this and it was small so it looked OK.

    160 Sanding Screen wrapped over the elevator bolt, too course, uneven swirls.


    As for locating the work, I talked to a machinist at my tool supply and he loaned me his Cratex to play with. His thoughts on a grid or pegboard was to clamp it solidly to the press and use the holes to locate the piece as you move it around on the board. He says it works really well.

    So, that is my humble findings. I am off to play with my 1/2" Cratex, decide on a good diameter for my dash etc. Between the dash and other parts I figure I have 40 hours worth of work ahead of me:eek:
     
  30. scootermcrad
    Joined: Sep 20, 2005
    Posts: 12,375

    scootermcrad
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Great! Cool! Thanks! I'm anxious to try it like this. I got to thinking that if you took your time and made other hole patterns you could create different turned patterns as well. Like maybe a circular pattern. Would take a ton of time to drill all the guide holes, but if the holes were laid out with CAD first and then transfered to a piece of masonite and drilled, it would probably work pretty awesome.

    Too much thinking... sorry! :p:rolleyes:
     

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