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Walter
11-19-2009, 02:38 AM
Well, a few weeks back a problem was dropped on my bench. Pretty straightforward, how to drill a hole .076 directly centered on a ledge on a radius-ed part. The part being nickel silver that had been hot formed. Usually we put these parts in a press and mark them (make a punch mark for the drill to ride in) but this time the ledge created by the line made the drills wander off every time.

Our first thought was to pop them with an endmill... lets just say that wasn't the best of ideas.

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177295.jpg

So, we decided to try something a bit different. We took some old aluminum barstock and squared it up in the mill. Then we marked out a pocket to clear the ends of the parts placed upside down on the blocks. Pins were added to allow us to locate the parts reliably. below you'll see the bottom side of the block, pins installed and locked in heightwise with setscrews.

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177311.jpg

Next the parts were put on the blocks with the "caps and bolsters", as they're called, facing down. We then poured babbit into the pockets to act as a support and locatiing for the odd shapes. This gave us a reasonably secure way to hold the parts for drilling from the backside. Clearance holes were popped in for the drill.

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177310.jpg

These are matching but opposed parts, 4 fixture points. So for each "scale" side this was done twice on a single block.

Continued in next post.

Walter
11-19-2009, 02:44 AM
We then added a swinging lock that could be reversed for either side of the part and the blocks were clamped in a mill drill and finished. 1200 of them. It wasn't one of the prettiest jobs, but it made for a great way to work around an unusual problem for us. Oddly we found that this process actually proved to be faster than our normal way of doing things, and we've taken to using babbitt for more fixturing to do similar projects.

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177301.jpg

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177299.jpg

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177305.jpg

http://pic100.picturetrail.com:80/VOL1167/4323122/22626082/376177294.jpg

Walter
11-19-2009, 02:57 AM
In terms of machine work this project was really minimal. It was however one of those "were counting on you to fix this problem" jobs, and worse it was a time sensitive issue. We support a production facility with approximately 40 people performing over 200 operations per finished item. Most of the time "Lead time" is pretty much non existent. This idea and the execution of it was thought up and put into operation in about a 4 hour space with the parts themselves being finished about 8 hours later.

Greg Parent
11-19-2009, 08:36 AM
They look like bolsters and side plates for a pocket knife.

I like the brass and nickel silver knives. Can you say what brand?

Ken_Shea
11-19-2009, 08:45 AM
Excellent Walter,
I have always completely enjoyed seeing how others come up with unique methods of fixturing parts, this is another classic example of the complexity of the fixturing over a very simple machining process, in this case drilling.

lynnl
11-19-2009, 04:05 PM
Very interesting writeup.

Though that ridge near the edge of the bolster is not where I'd want to see a pin. But I assume there were some compelling reason(s) for that choice. A manufacturing 'Ooops' I guess.

MrSleepy
11-19-2009, 04:21 PM
nice walter..

im also in need of some inspiration for some fixture i need to make to face mill and regroove some golf clubs I've got..

vokey wedges ...notsure what the factory uses when they make them..

so thanks
Rob

tattoomike68
11-19-2009, 04:33 PM
nice walter..

im also in need of some inspiration for some fixture i need to make to face mill and regroove some golf clubs I've got..

vokey wedges ...notsure what the factory uses when they make them..

so thanks
Rob

I would bet your golf clubs where made in 5 axis high speed horizontal mills with tombstone fixtures.

Not a cheap market to get into at all. If you want to reface your clubs I say do it by hand. a sander and die grinder.

Walter
11-19-2009, 05:10 PM
They look like bolsters and side plates for a pocket knife.

I like the brass and nickel silver knives. Can you say what brand?
Greg,

Dead on =) I work for Queen Cutlery / Schatt & Morgan. (http://www.queencutlery.com)


Very interesting writeup.

Though that ridge near the edge of the bolster is not where I'd want to see a pin. But I assume there were some compelling reason(s) for that choice. A manufacturing 'Ooops' I guess.
Lynnl,

This is a reverse engineering situation, literally building a knife that hasn't been made for near on 100 years. Working from pictures of an original, and some old die parts. Sometimes it isn't perfect. It's definately a pain in the butt, but there's no functional detraction. The reverse engineering is a common thing for us as some of the knives we do aren't available as samples anymore, and some of the samples we do have/get cannot be altered or damaged in any way as they are collectors items.

I should say though, as these are working knives, we do focus on functionality just as much as fit and finish.

MrSleepy
11-19-2009, 05:17 PM
I'll end up doing them in my syil x3...chop the shafts out and make a similar fixture to walters.....as a learning exercise if nothing else..

I've worked in the pro shop since I was 13...still do all the trolleys and buggies...so I get pretty good deals on equipment and if a foobar em it wont matter.

learn something every day...... tombstone fixtures ..never heard that before so thanks..

Rob

bob ward
11-19-2009, 06:43 PM
Thanks for that Walter, there are some good ideas there to store away for future use.

JCHannum
11-19-2009, 07:46 PM
Thanks for the tip and link. It is good to see a line of quality knives made in the USA. I was not familiar with the manufacturer.

The use of babbit for fixturing an odd shape is a good use of materials at hand. There are low temperature melting alloys made by Cerro that are made for this and other applications. JB Weld and Bondo are also castable materials that can be used for the same purpose.

Walter
11-20-2009, 04:54 AM
JC,

I'm familiar with the low temp alloys, good stuff there.

You got it exactly right, we used what we had on hand. The Babbitt we had lying around in bars. We do use Bondo for some grinding fixtures.


It is good to see a line of quality knives made in the USA.
Yup, I'm proud to still be part of making good stuff here in the USA. And the knives really are workers, I carry and use the one below daily.

Little chunk of history,

The first nickel-chromium steel produced in America was made in Titusville at the Cyclops Steel Company under the leadership of Cyclops’ chief metallurgist Charles Evans in 1917. This was done specifically for Schatt & Morgan.
http://www.queencutlery.com/images/Schatt%20&%20Morgan%202008/042297%202008%20S&M%20Horiculturists%20Knife.jpg

lynnl
11-20-2009, 10:34 AM
I've been familiar with Queen as far back as I can remember..
But I've never heard of Schatt & Morgan before.

I don't know if I've just forgotten how to sharpen knives in my adult years, but I've never been able to get any stainless blades nearly as sharp as I'd like.
The old plain carbon steel just seemed to sharpen so much better. ...and stay sharp longer.

BobWarfield
11-20-2009, 11:12 AM
Lynn, I've heard the same about carbon steel. I remember my grandmother's old knives were always razor sharp, but they didn't look pretty. Even got a little rust here and there.

Not acceptible in our modern lives, even if we give up a little sharpness!

Cheers,

BW

Walter
11-20-2009, 11:48 AM
I've been familiar with Queen as far back as I can remember..
But I've never heard of Schatt & Morgan before.

I don't know if I've just forgotten how to sharpen knives in my adult years, but I've never been able to get any stainless blades nearly as sharp as I'd like.
The old plain carbon steel just seemed to sharpen so much better. ...and stay sharp longer. Today 09:54 AM

Stainless is grumpy about taking an edge at times, Hollow grinds seem to improve this some. The folks that sharpen our knives do an outstanding job, heck I take my personal knife up and have them sharpen it for me. They never fail to give me a razor sharp edge. And I do mean Razor sharp.

We run a variety of steels, 420 HC, ATS 34 for the Schatt & Morgan, Mostly D2 for the queen stuff. The Schatt and Morgan line is really a collectors series of knives, but beautiful working knives just the same. The fit and finish in the S&M line is higher than in the Queen knives. The S&M stuff is also handled with very expensive stuff, no plastic or micarta etc. The Mother of Pearl is real as are the other materials and it's all presentation grade stuff.

D2 is a great knife steel in our opinion, very tuff stuff, that holds an edge. It can be a bear to sharpen also but definately holds up better than the stainless. D2 however will not polish out a nicely as the stainless so it's not used for the glitzy stuff. The Queen Knives are definately built as functional everyday knives with a keen edge twards fit and finish. And yes, the 1095 Carbon is nice stuff, but no one wants knives that rust. But I'd bet on the D2 holding an edge alot better ;)

One thing I don't know if many realize is that unlike many cutlery companies, we still make our knives near on the same way as they were made in the beginning. Mostly all hand operations to make and assemble these knives.

There is, lurking here somewhere, another fellow from Queen. He's the other tool and die guy. He handles more on the knives than I do and he might be able to say things better than I. So IF he sees this and can be tempted to speak up... :D


Lynnl, you might get a kick out of reading the Queen Cutlery / Schatt & Morgan history (http://www.allaboutpocketknives.com/queen/index.php)

Scishopguy
11-20-2009, 02:54 PM
Lynnl...The nicest pocket knife I ever owned was a Queen, 3 blade, about 3 1/2" long. It was so nice that one of my coworkers borrowed it...permantly! :( I miss that old knife. Now, I carry a Schrade second, with a plastic handle. Nobody wants to steal that one. :D

Evan
11-20-2009, 04:00 PM
I don't know if I've just forgotten how to sharpen knives in my adult years, but I've never been able to get any stainless blades nearly as sharp as I'd like.


It depends on the grade of stainless steel. I carry a Victorinox Swiss Officers Grade knife, no longer offered. It has SS blades. I use it to distinguish ordinary mild steel from T1 or AR plate at the local fabricator when I am buying drops. It will shave off a sliver of ordinary structural steel no problem but I have to work to make a cut in the harder stuff.

lynnl
11-20-2009, 05:41 PM
Interesting reading Walter. In fact it's always interesting to learn of the evolutionary process of an old mfg co.
So now, as I understand it, the name Schatt & Morgan represents just a 'series' made by the Queen brand.

My current pocket knife is a Hen & Rooster (or Rooster & Hen, whichever), and it's a real pretty knife, but again, I can never get an edge that'll shave my arm cleanly, like years ago.

Yeah, regarding the SS issue, it's puzzling because I know the SS blades, many at least, are capable of taking a sharp edge when ground. Two or three Xmas'es ago my daughter gave us a nice kitchen knife set, with the tilted wooden storage block. Henckels I believe they are. And those were extremely sharp right out of the box. However, the most used ones, once they lost that initial edge, I've never been able to get them that sharp again, PLUS, the edge I put on them just doesn't last as long as that initial, factory edge.

I've always used Schick razors, and years ago, before the days of these 2 or 3 blade cartridges, I used the Schick injector blades. There was a period of time, in the '70s I think, when the Schick blades were described as "chromium ...." something or other. They were great! Then there was some sort of political upheaval or such in Rhodesia or somewhere in Africa, and chromium became scarcer or more expensive, and those Schick blades became unavailable. Or rather, the Schick blades were no longer described as chromium, and those were NOTICEABLY inferior.
Bottom line: I don't, for a minute, think SS just inherently makes for a poor edge alloy.

Scishopguy
11-20-2009, 08:16 PM
For those who are having trouble establishing a good, sharp edge, I can recommend a couple of sharpeners. I have a "Gatco" fixture but the "Lansky" does equally well. They are a clamp that holds the back edge of the blade. The clamp has guide slots that hold the stones (which have a rod protruding from the back end) at one of several angles. I got a set of the diamond hones and they keep my blades sharp enough to shave with. My cheap little Schrade second has a stainless blade and I can shave with it. Once you establish the primary angle it only takes a touch up every once in a while to keep it right.

Greg Parent
11-20-2009, 09:06 PM
Greg,
Dead on =) I work for Queen Cutlery / Schatt & Morgan. (http://www.queencutlery.com)


Walter,
I collect pocket knives and have had a few Schatt & Morgan and Queen Cutlery in my collection at various times. One of the nicest knives I have ever carried was a S&M Worked-back Senator with mother of pearl scales, cut swedge blades and French pulls. I lost it somehow and have never found as nice a replacement.
I am envious of your profession.
Thanks for posting.
Greg

Walter
11-22-2009, 02:00 AM
Interesting reading Walter. In fact it's always interesting to learn of the evolutionary process of an old mfg co.
So now, as I understand it, the name Schatt & Morgan represents just a 'series' made by the Queen brand.

My current pocket knife is a Hen & Rooster (or Rooster & Hen, whichever), and it's a real pretty knife, but again, I can never get an edge that'll shave my arm cleanly, like years ago.

Yeah, regarding the SS issue, it's puzzling because I know the SS blades, many at least, are capable of taking a sharp edge when ground. Two or three Xmas'es ago my daughter gave us a nice kitchen knife set, with the tilted wooden storage block. Henckels I believe they are. And those were extremely sharp right out of the box. However, the most used ones, once they lost that initial edge, I've never been able to get them that sharp again, PLUS, the edge I put on them just doesn't last as long as that initial, factory edge.

I've always used Schick razors, and years ago, before the days of these 2 or 3 blade cartridges, I used the Schick injector blades. There was a period of time, in the '70s I think, when the Schick blades were described as "chromium ...." something or other. They were great! Then there was some sort of political upheaval or such in Rhodesia or somewhere in Africa, and chromium became scarcer or more expensive, and those Schick blades became unavailable. Or rather, the Schick blades were no longer described as chromium, and those were NOTICEABLY inferior.
Bottom line: I don't, for a minute, think SS just inherently makes for a poor edge alloy.

Lynnl,

On the S&M name, I'd have to say it's more than just a line. Considering QCC was founded by S&M People, then bought out by those same folks, effectively merging the companies under one name. Were still in the original Titusville S&M building, still using the same methods, patterns, setups, and many times the original dies :)

Were I to use an analogy I'd have to call Queen, GM; and S&M, Cadillac...

Those Henckel knifes are very very nice kitchen knives. Professional grade knives for sure. An old friend that was a chef used to be touchy about his Henckles the way you or I would be about a nice set of mics. For my kitchen knives I use a carbide sharpener for the initial edge, then I stick to using a "steel". Nothing from the small paring knife to the cleaver will hesitate to shave arm hair off instantly. The steels take a bit to get used to but I've had nary a problem with them.

Walter
11-22-2009, 02:11 AM
Walter,
I collect pocket knives and have had a few Schatt & Morgan and Queen Cutlery in my collection at various times. One of the nicest knives I have ever carried was a S&M Worked-back Senator with mother of pearl scales, cut swedge blades and French pulls. I lost it somehow and have never found as nice a replacement.
I am envious of your profession.
Thanks for posting.
Greg

Greg,

Glad you enjoyed this, Very cool to know you carried an S&M also. I actually have had folks say to me "Wow, you actually use one... everyone just displays them". :D

Wasteland16354
11-22-2009, 06:53 PM
That was a great idea that Walter had for doing that.

BRAVO!!:cool: