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View Full Version : Mystery Tool is for Honing Reamers



jep24601
06-18-2011, 09:30 AM
The Mystery tool which I posted is a tool for honing reamers. Forum memeber Optics Curmudgeon found the patent. Here is the patent drawing followed by my original pic:

http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w23/jep24601/Shop/StilesTool.gif

http://i172.photobucket.com/albums/w23/jep24601/Shop/Stiles.gif

aostling
06-18-2011, 09:47 AM
It's a strange patent. There is nothing clever about this tool, nothing that seems patentable.

jep24601
06-18-2011, 10:01 AM
It's a strange patent. There is nothing clever about this tool, nothing that seems patentable.
Yes, it's amazing what seems to be patentable. All it does is hold the reamer in position for honing.

J Tiers
06-18-2011, 10:53 AM
Yes, it's amazing what seems to be patentable. All it does is hold the reamer in position for honing.

And it provides a guide for the honing tool, which has in one option a contour (see number 28) apparently for guiding the hone angle in a specific path or locating it. I have not looked up the patent to see the exact plan.

if you think it is not useful or patentable, I recommend that you hand-hone a reamer without a guide. See what happens.

alanganes
06-18-2011, 11:24 AM
It is funny to me how obvious it is that this is a fixture for honing reamers, now that someone told me what it was!

jep24601
06-18-2011, 12:23 PM
.....if you think it is not useful or patentable, I recommend that you hand-hone a reamer without a guide. See what happens.
Useful and patentable are different issues Jerry.

I would have thought that by 1923 someone would have already thought up a way to hone a reamer with a guide.

J Tiers
06-18-2011, 12:34 PM
Useful and patentable are different issues Jerry.

I would have thought that by 1923 someone would have already thought up a way to hone a reamer with a guide.

Of course....

"a way" no doubt was found.

But many many patents are for *different* ways to do the same thing..... often to get around an existing patent.

It's still going on. I know of patents which are clearly "anticipated" by prior patents, but they issued a just the same. Not just my opinion, our patent attorneys said the same thing, but they also said it would cost us a couple million to prove it, and even then the applicable court district *never* invalidates patents, so we'd likely get nothing for our money.

strokersix
06-18-2011, 01:16 PM
My name is on nearly 20 patents. Some are clever, some obvious, some seem like they are not worth patenting. All are paid for by my current and previous employers. Without exception they are intended to block competition.

I am proud to have my name on these patents. However, I recognize that they are not a direct reflection on my skill as an engineer. I just happened to be working on something the company wished to protect.

Patents are about business, not engineering.

TGTool
06-18-2011, 03:53 PM
I'm a little puzzled by one feature of the patent drawing shown. In Fig 3 he shows a holder for the stone with a concave under surface. That will change the angle of the stone on the reamer depending on how far it's extended, but I can't see why that would be wanted. The tooth angle will ordinarily be determined by the tooth rest, and if you wanted a secondary angle you'd set it by moving the tooth rest. So what does that feature do for honing reamers?

form_change
06-18-2011, 05:55 PM
Sometimes patent attorneys get a bit tricky, and try to anticipate challenges. In the case of the curved underside it doesn't necessarily make sense from a use point of view (fig 2 is much more straightforward), but to block someone who comes up with the same thing but has a concave under surface (the old "It's not the same - mine invention is better because it's curved" defense), they may have included it, hence as an add on (figure 3). I once had a PA suggest all sorts of things to me for this reason.
Having said that provided things were properly positioned it could give a curved profile on the back of the reamer edge. At the time of invention this may have been seen as desirable (better strength, smoother cut, what ever)

Michael

Doc Nickel
06-18-2011, 09:13 PM
I would have thought that by 1923 someone would have already thought up a way to hone a reamer with a guide.

-For those that think it's "obvious" or that 1923 seems "late" to have patented such a thing, keep in mind the O-ring was patented in 1939 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niels_Christensen). Yes, as in the ubiquitous round rubber seal. Wasn't patented 'til just before WW2.

Doc.

J Tiers
06-19-2011, 12:07 AM
-For those that think it's "obvious" or that 1923 seems "late" to have patented such a thing, keep in mind the O-ring was patented in 1939 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niels_Christensen). Yes, as in the ubiquitous round rubber seal. Wasn't patented 'til just before WW2.

Doc.


And you'd a thunk that it would be "obvious to one skilled in the art" if they had ever seen piston rod gland packing...... or valve packing......

But there is an argument with a good deal of force that the o-ring is fundamentally different from a material and production standpoint.

Arguing the merits of a patent has more sides and varieties of claims than you can imagine..... "new" or "novel" can be broad, or narrow.

An improvement, such as the idea of a curved surface, is perhaps patentable, but not useful unless you can either make the original patented machine that you have improved, OR you can sell the patent for a nice sum to the owners of the original patent.

Otherwise you can't do much since you can't make the machine, although you can make replacement parts with the curve, assuming the rest of the holder is not in the original claims. And they can't use your improvement without buying you out. It's a standoff, , one they probably win if you can't make the holder due to their claims.

TGTool
06-19-2011, 10:59 AM
I'm a little puzzled by one feature of the patent drawing shown. In Fig 3 he shows a holder for the stone with a concave under surface. That will change the angle of the stone on the reamer depending on how far it's extended, but I can't see why that would be wanted. The tooth angle will ordinarily be determined by the tooth rest, and if you wanted a secondary angle you'd set it by moving the tooth rest. So what does that feature do for honing reamers?

Well, some more rumination I think has clarified it for me. If the stone holder with the concave depression in it is set up using the straight section and tooth rest to establish the cutting edge with its slight clearance, the concavity will automatically generate a clearance.

I was first envisioning that if it was setup using the depression as shown in the figure it would start to created a negative angle at the cutting edge as the back end of the stone was raised. Which is true, but it needs to be envisioned (and set up) the opposite way and it all works out.

Duffy
06-19-2011, 11:42 AM
It is my understanding that a reamer is intended to slightly enlarge a hole EXACTLY true to size. If this is so, then would not honing the reamer make it cut somewhat, (albeit only a little,) undersize? Therefore, what is the benefit of the tool? It clearly is not intended as a production tool, since it is hand-operated.
In 1923, most reamers would have been high carbon steel, and not kept an edge as long as HSS, but it seems to me that this was a "patentable device" that served no REALLY useful purpose except to produce sharp, undersize reamers.

J Tiers
06-19-2011, 12:25 PM
It is my understanding that a reamer is intended to slightly enlarge a hole EXACTLY true to size. If this is so, then would not honing the reamer make it cut somewhat, (albeit only a little,) undersize? Therefore, what is the benefit of the tool? It clearly is not intended as a production tool, since it is hand-operated.
In 1923, most reamers would have been high carbon steel, and not kept an edge as long as HSS, but it seems to me that this was a "patentable device" that served no REALLY useful purpose except to produce sharp, undersize reamers.

Most reamers cut on the front edge.... Either a sharp angle, as with machine reamers, OR a long angle as with hand reamers.

If honed on the front only, they would remain the same size. Wear will reduce the OD.

If a newly made reamer is cut and/or rough ground, they could be honed to size with this device.....

An existing reamer can be honed to an exact undersize for press fit as with dowel pins.

I would not say it is useless.

Mcostello
06-19-2011, 09:55 PM
In 1923 maybe most shops made reamers, Msc and Enco might not have been widely known then, and people just did not pick up the phone for them.

fixerdave
06-19-2011, 09:56 PM
-For those that think it's "obvious" or that 1923 seems "late" to have patented such a thing, keep in mind the O-ring was patented in 1939 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niels_Christensen). Yes, as in the ubiquitous round rubber seal. Wasn't patented 'til just before WW2.

Doc.

Going from memory here but I was under the impression that the O-ring solution was all about the properly over-sized groove that it rides in. By being over-sized, it allows the O-ring to rock back and forth, thus greatly extending its life. A brilliant (or fortuitous, I don't know) solution to a vexing problem at the time. Sealing was/is fairly easy... it's having the seals last a reasonable amount of time that is difficult.

But, getting this back on topic... just how did someone find this patent in a search? I mean, going from the visual element and not even knowing what it's designed to do has got to make keyword searches difficult. I've tried looking at those patent databases... all I manage to find are endless pages of drivel. The idea of being able to get useful ideas out of the databases seems great, but I always seem to wind up buried under, well, less than useful search results. I guess my patent-fu is a little less polished than my google-fu.

And, going slightly off-topic again. I just had an idea - hoping it's already been done, actually. Is there a WIKI that links to a stable patent database? Now, that would be useful. Letting people categorise, comment on, and clarify interesting patents. Imagine people convert those typically-lousy patent prints into 3D models loaded up in the Google warehouse for SketchUp. Hmmm, I just might do one or two for fun... would be a good learning experience.

edit: 600 or so entries that match 'patent' in the SketchUp warehouse. Not a lot, but some. Still needs a way of user-commenting on them though.

J Tiers
06-19-2011, 11:33 PM
In 1923 maybe most shops made reamers, Msc and Enco might not have been widely known then, and people just did not pick up the phone for them.

Very possibly so. Most old toolmaking books have a section on making reamers.

Tools were expensive, and a "just good enough" tool made locally was often much cheaper than a "really nice" tool bought from a manufacturer, while working just as well for the purpose.

it's not like anyone here knows about that, right? ......... We're all about making it if we can, possibly just for the experience, possibly because wer'e cheap.

There is at least one thread (or what's left of one due to hijacks) now going on about making end mill holders. And another about good materials for that.

We've had threads on making taps, but I don't recall any on making reamers, other than "D-bits". It's probably time for a reamer-making thread......We now have an idea for a hone, so that problem is solved..... Who's game for it?

JCHannum
06-20-2011, 09:32 AM
While I have not personally made a reamer, I have seen lots of information on making them. Gunsmithing and cartridge chambering brings out the need to make reamers in the shop. Many of the gunsmithing forums and better reference books have the information available.

The D bit is the simplest and works well if slowly. The multi flute is a bit trickier in fluting, but it is simple enough to machine. The tricky part comes in hardening and finish honing. The simple fixture in the photo or a copy will do, and manufactures of chambering reamers use a refined version of that to hone their reamers.

If you have the luxury of owning a T&C grinder, the blank is prepared and hardened and finished as you would sharpen any other reamer.

jep24601
06-20-2011, 11:15 AM
...But, getting this back on topic... just how did someone find this patent in a search? I mean, going from the visual element and not even knowing what it's designed to do has got to make keyword searches difficult. I've tried looking at those patent databases... all I manage to find are endless pages of drivel....

Couldn't agree more. I searched on everything I could think of and couldn't understand why nothing came up if I mentioned "centers" in the search as very obviously the tool holds something between centers. Well, the patent describes holding the reamer but it calls the center a "pointed device or substantially cone-shaped device".

Rosco-P
06-20-2011, 12:38 PM
A shopmade fixture of this type and it's use is described in one volume of the Machinist's Bedside Reader.

deltaenterprizes
06-20-2011, 06:55 PM
I would love to see a thread on sharpening reamers to a specific diameter and how to measure as you are sharpening. I made a small version of the jig in "The Machinist Bedside Reader" and it works OK but I need help with taking readings and measurements to get the final diameter dead on.
I am making "cherries" to cut bullet molds and reamers to cut bullet swaging dies.

JCHannum
06-20-2011, 08:46 PM
In a nutshell, a reamer is cylindrically ground. It is sharpened by grinding the face of the blade.

http://www.brownells.com/userdocs/learn/Inst-161.pdf

Paul Alciatore
06-21-2011, 01:15 AM
.....

But, getting this back on topic... just how did someone find this patent in a search? I mean, going from the visual element and not even knowing what it's designed to do has got to make keyword searches difficult. I've tried looking at those patent databases... all I manage to find are endless pages of drivel. The idea of being able to get useful ideas out of the databases seems great, but I always seem to wind up buried under, well, less than useful search results. I guess my patent-fu is a little less polished than my google-fu.

And, going slightly off-topic again. I just had an idea - hoping it's already been done, actually. Is there a WIKI that links to a stable patent database? Now, that would be useful. Letting people categorise, comment on, and clarify interesting patents. Imagine people convert those typically-lousy patent prints into 3D models loaded up in the Google warehouse for SketchUp. Hmmm, I just might do one or two for fun... would be a good learning experience.

.....

I have to second this question. Just HOW was this search performed to find the exact match in a patent? Surely not brute force. But what?

jep24601
06-21-2011, 09:31 AM
Optics Curmudgeon says he just started searching all the patents with that date and looking at the patent drawing and after about 600 he found it!

fixerdave
06-21-2011, 11:23 AM
Optics Curmudgeon says he just started searching all the patents with that date and looking at the patent drawing and after about 600 he found it!

Well, I guess that's where my problem with patent searching is... I always give up around the 280 mark ;)

So, putting a wee bit of effort where my mouth is, I came up with this:

Patents Wiki (http://patents.wikia.com/wiki/Patents_Wiki)

It appears to be a decent Wiki host, editable via the public with no account required, and it's hosted by the people that made Wikipedia. Seems add-sponsored, but seems to work well enough.

I have no idea if it will fly, or even if it's redoing what's already been done some place I can't find. But, it can't hurt to try. I created a page for the topic mystery tool just as a start (stole the picture for it too - delete it if it's a problem... it's a Wiki, you can do that.) Someday, maybe I'll actually make a SketchUp model of some interesting patent, or two.

Optics Curmudgeon
06-21-2011, 11:25 AM
Yes, for pre-1976 patents it's absolutely brute force. There are few search options available, and none are content based. If you know the patent number you can go straight to it, but here we only had the issue date. A search for an issue date of 12/25/1923 gives 706 hits, and they are saved as images. It's a matter of opening them one at a time, this one had a drawing on the first page that was the item in the photo.

deltaenterprizes
06-23-2011, 02:52 PM
In a nutshell, a reamer is cylindrically ground. It is sharpened by grinding the face of the blade.

http://www.brownells.com/userdocs/learn/Inst-161.pdf

I think the Brownells instruction sheet is to resharpen, I am making them from scratch.