View Full Version : actually made my first useful item today

03-23-2005, 10:14 PM
remember, i'm just a newbie hobbyist here. one of my projects is the old B&S Omniversal mill. the operating rod to shift the table feed was glued in place with old grease and oil, and some fool tried to hammer it loose. in the process they broke a brass shift dog and the operating pin on the shift lever. today i made up a new pin (it has a .370" shaft that sticks into the shift lever and a .45" head on it that moves the shift rod). okay, it was a pretty simple project, but it is the first thing i've made that actually has a purpose, and wasn't just a piece of scrap i was making test cuts on.

i know this thing was no big deal, but i was just happy to finally make something that solved a problem. and i did it myself in my own shop. next i have to make the brass shift dog. i did the lathe work on it and now i'm off to the milling operations. i'll get a pic of it as it isn't as simple as a stepped diameter pin.

andy b.

03-23-2005, 10:26 PM
It's not about the size or complexity of the project that matters, it's the sense of accomplishment, empowerment, and experience you receive!

[This message has been edited by egpace (edited 03-23-2005).]

03-23-2005, 10:48 PM
Now you're HOOKED! Next thing you know, you'll be spending the grocery $$$ on tooling and depriving the wife & kids of the necessities of life.

They'll get used to it.

03-23-2005, 11:12 PM
Welcome to the dark side. Just kidding. Congrats! It won't be long and you'll be making your own divider head. We all started small. Post the pix when you can, I would like to see your handy work. Have fun with it.

03-24-2005, 12:30 AM
First 'useful' thing I made on the lathe was a big flat nut to clamp the deck of my push mower, I made it so I use my angle grinder spanner to tighten it. I was so proud of myself.

As egpace said, size and complexity don't matter, its all satisfaction with making something that serves its intended purpose.

Just wait until you are making useless stuff on the lathe, I do that all the time!!

03-24-2005, 12:39 AM
Your right it is a GREAT feeling to acomnplish something in the machining world especially when it's useful, it's like you have access to fabricating things that you can't get comercially, especially when done at your own home shop.
Keep up the good work...

03-24-2005, 08:54 AM
I'ts is a big deal. You changed a piece of junk into a working machine again. That's always a big deal.

Paul Gauthier
03-24-2005, 11:56 AM
Be careful, making your own stuff is a disease that is very enjoyable. Another word of caution, making something for your significant other can cause a cascade of projects called a honey-do-list, that can adversly affect your own important to do list.

Paul G.

03-24-2005, 01:02 PM
If you're like me you'll find yourself making things that can be acquired fairly easily. I needed a metric mounting bolt for the alternator in one of my vehicles awhile back.

Rather than drive the 14 mile round trip to buy one, I turned and rethreaded a 3/8 bolt. The feeling of accomplishment is always worth the effort.

03-24-2005, 01:08 PM
Cool deal on your part.

I agree with Carl,expedience is often more important than price.

Cecil Walker
03-24-2005, 04:23 PM
congradulations and condolences: congrats on the first part being made and condolences because your life is now forever changed.

03-24-2005, 07:27 PM
Good deal Andy! I agree with the previous posts. You make a shaft, knurl part of it and whakc some threads on there, not a big deal but when you do it in your own shop without any outside assistance it gives you a good feeling. That's why we do it http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif
And thanks to the internet we can share it with other like minded folk.
Show a part to a non-machinist and they go, "Yea, it's a bolt"...
You are on a slippery slope my friend...

Hoffman in Warner Robins Ga

03-24-2005, 10:28 PM
thanks for all the words of encouragement! or were they words of warning????

andy b.

03-24-2005, 11:19 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by andy_b:
thanks for all the words of encouragement! or were they words of warning????

andy b.</font>

Actually we were encouraging you to take heed of the warning. If you find yourself condidering making 10d nails because the nails you have are 15 feet away and the lathe is only 7 feet away, it's time for a reassessment. Now 11 1/2d nails are a completely different story! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

[This message has been edited by egpace (edited 03-24-2005).]

03-25-2005, 01:17 AM
Only another 10,000 projects and the tooling costs will be paid for!

Congratulations on your first project completion, be carefull not to run around the house saying "look at what I have made" nothing less than making a new car will usually excite people that have never made things themselves. They will look at it and say things like "isn't that nice" or perhaps the dreaded "why does it have that little nick in it" (people will always find the flaw in your work..expect it)

Now go back and get started on that four year project to make a $1200 little engine and get it to run almost as well as your $40 weedeater does.

Truly all kidding aside there is loads of pride in having actually made your first usefull object, there is likely many great projects in your future.

03-25-2005, 09:26 AM
Hey Andy,

Good for you. Even if it is a bolt or something simple you can buy, that store might not be open at 2am, when you realy need the part.

Now why you are up at 2am...that is another story. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

Rob http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif