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Hot Rods Form a Gasket

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Fortunateson, May 20, 2019.

  1. Fortunateson
    Joined: Apr 30, 2012
    Posts: 3,218

    Fortunateson
    Member

    My son is restoring a mid sixties era Harrison lathe. Generally cleaning it up etc. He bought some gasket, paper, material and made a gasket for the head stock (box with all the gears?). It's only bolted down in two locations so it doesn't seal worth a darn. He asked me about different materials and I told him to double check that both surfaces are indeed flat. How they would b come warped I have no idea. I also suggested that he could use something like FormaGasket. He said that on a machinists forum he frequents that that kind of thing was viewed as a no no as it supposedly dries out and flakes off into the gearbox. I thought that stuff was supposed to stay flexible? I'm hoping he will be able to make up some parts for my HAMB friendly projects so I think this should be ok to post. Thanks...
     
  2. Regular silicon gasket sealer stays pliable.
     
  3. Fortunateson
    Joined: Apr 30, 2012
    Posts: 3,218

    Fortunateson
    Member

    Hanks, but I think he needs something a little thicker than just a sealer though.
     
  4. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 46,345

    squirrel
    Member

    Silicone isn't really a gasket sealer. It can be used in place of gaskets, and will dry and form a rubber seal between the metal parts, that will stay flexible and not leak (if you do it right). Without seeing what he's working on, we can't say for sure if it will work, but from the description, it sounds like it would. Get everything clean (use brake cleaner or something to get rid of the oil film) before applying the stuff, and let it dry through before filling with oil.
     
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  5. Casey Riley
    Joined: Jun 27, 2018
    Posts: 453

    Casey Riley
    Member
    from Minnesota

    My grandpa made gaskets for certain applications with multiple layers of paper grocery bag cut to size sandwiched between multiple layers of blue RTV.
     
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  6. 41rodderz
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 5,007

    41rodderz
    Member
    from Oregon

    Good old ingenuity.
     
    lothiandon1940 and Deuces like this.
  7. I don't see why that would be a big deal. We're not talking watch gears here, and aren't most gearboxes of that type splash lubricated anyway, so no worries about blocking lubrication.
     
  8. If it's too thick for sealant then maybe rubber, but even that will eventually dry out.
     
  9. brasscarguy
    Joined: Jun 12, 2010
    Posts: 180

    brasscarguy
    Member
    from seattle

    I too have a Harrison Lathe. Mine is quite large 15' long with a 20" swing and nearly 5000 pounds. I have a cast aluminum gear cover also held on by allen head bolts. Mine also leaked a bit when turning at higher speeds. I removed my cover and used my cylinder head surfacer to true the casting. Only needed to take a couple of thou off. The main housing was dead nuts on so I just lightly used a very fine file and touched up a couple of burrs from someone using a screwdriver to loosen up the cover. There was a rather thick factory gasket which I cleaned with brake clean and reused it. I then replaced the cover and torqued the Allen Head bolts down and no more leak. I would not use FormAgasket to glue the cover down. It make a hard job to remove it in the future. As stated mine came with a rather thick gasket and I would suggest you make a suitable replacement out of thick gasket material. This makes an easy job out of removal in the future.

    I'm sure you know the Harrison Lathe was the finest machine tool available in England. These are super accurate and have adjustments for everything to keep it in spec. Mine came from a newspaper printer and had almost zero use. The reason for the extra long centers was to be able to turn and true the press rollers. I have 9' between centers with a 4" head stock bore. A bit overkill but must say sure is nice making drivelines and axle shafts.

    What size is your Harrison and do you know the age? The serial number and model should be stamped on the bed at the end of the lathe same side where you stand to operate. Go online there is listings of serial numbers and approx. manufacture dates. Congratulations on obtaining a fine quality tool.

    Just sayin'

    brasscarguy
     
  10. 03GMCSonoma
    Joined: Jan 15, 2011
    Posts: 225

    03GMCSonoma
    Member

    My dad used the cardboard in pads of paper for gaskets. He used the peen of a ball peen hammer to make the bolt/screw holes. The edges were cut by either using the hammer to pound it against the edge to cut it or trace it and cut it with scissors. Sometimes he did both.
     
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  11. Fortunateson
    Joined: Apr 30, 2012
    Posts: 3,218

    Fortunateson
    Member

    Well it is my son's lathe. The FormaGasket was just thinking out loud really. He has the old gasket and made a duplicate as well. But as I said in my original post I suggested that he check the flatness of the cover as I don't think the main body could ever get warped. I'll get him to reply to the questions you asked. He got the lathe from a tool supply shop that took it in trade from a school. I think he got a good deal on it and I believe he is planning to set it up for CNC work; he's a Mechatronics tech so he definitely has the smarts!
     
    lothiandon1940 likes this.
  12. Fortunateson
    Joined: Apr 30, 2012
    Posts: 3,218

    Fortunateson
    Member

    FA7DF5BE-54B0-470E-A9E2-28BB71B07576.jpeg Pp
     

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