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  • A Small Production Job

    In the course of building prototype parts at work, we needed some 800 terminals. These were intended to crimp onto the end of a stranded leadwire, and then be soldered onto a coil terminal pin. It fell to me to design the connector, but jobbing the limited production out in the timeframe we needed was a problem, so I tooled up and made them myself in my home shop.

    .

    Blanking out the parts was a simple parting operation. The 3mm tubing was held in a collet and fed to a spacer block, temporarily held in between the part and a piece of rod held in a fixed position in the tailstock chuck.

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    The spacer was removed and the parting tool (from A.R.Warner, HSSMike on this BBS) was advanced on the cross slide.

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    Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
    ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

  • #2
    Where we were using the connector, a clearance issue arose near where it soldered onto the coil pin, so I needed to round the end of the connector. I did this with a simple forming die. The die was made by plunging a ball nose endmill to the required depth into a steel block. A small hole was drilled through to the bottom to allow a pin to eject the formed part. The forming operation amounted to pushing the brass tube with an arbor press into the hole, flush with the top surface.

    .

    The proof-of-concept parts didn’t have this rolled feature and would have been easier to produce. My original plan was to cross drill the small holes and then part off. I tried forming after drilling, but the forming operation just closed up the holes.


    Cross drilling was done on the lathe with a drilling spindle I built for the project. The spindle quill was patterned after a Dremel quill, accepting Dremel collets and chucks. The DC motor came out of a scrapped electric Jeep made for children. (An improved version of this spindle is planned as an article in one of the magazines)

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    The drilling spindle was mounted 90° to the lathe spindle. A block, mounted on the tool post, in proper relationship with the drill, served as a feed stop.
    Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
    ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

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    • #3
      Drilling the part involved chucking the part in a drill chuck mounted in the lathe spindle and rotating the spindle to align the pulley with an index mark, bringing the feed stop into contact with the part, then advancing the drill with the cross slide. The drill was returned, and the lathe spindle was rotated 180° to another index mark and the drilling process was repeated.

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      .

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      I used the pilot of a center drill for drilling the hole as it was stubby and rigid and did not deflect.
      Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
      ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

      Comment


      • #4
        Interesting project Weston. Thanks for the post and pics. How long did it take you to make 800?
        - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
        Thank you to our families of soldiers, many of whom have given so much more then the rest of us for the Freedom we enjoy.

        It is true, there is nothing free about freedom, don't be so quick to give it away.

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        • #5
          I agree, very interesting.

          Also wondering how long it took, and um, were you compensated for all your extra work? I only ask because I have done widget work on the weekend for my day job, but since I was salaried, nothing was ever said about additional compensation or even a simple "Good job, thanks". Soon it kind of came to be expected. As soon as I could, I left that company, went on hourly pay, and never looked back. Now if I do "extra" work, it's on the clock. Even if it's at home.

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          • #6
            Actual production time amounted to about 16 hours. there was probably another 4-5 hours of setup and cleanup, etc. I worked at home during business hours.

            I am on salary. I try to do the work during business hours, but do occasionally work an evening or weekend. Things tend to balance out pretty well, as my boss is pretty good about time off for doctor appointments and such.
            Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
            ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Weston Bye
              Actual production time amounted to about 16 hours. there was probably another 4-5 hours of setup and cleanup, etc. I worked at home during business hours.

              I am on salary. I try to do the work during business hours, but do occasionally work an evening or weekend. Things tend to balance out pretty well, as my boss is pretty good about time off for doctor appointments and such.
              I didn't think there were any good bosses left in this area Nice project appreciate the write up!

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              • #8
                I like your drill. I have the same thing only it was made by Browne & Sharpe. It is a common attachment for a screw machine, and can be used for milling as well. Set 90* to the spindle and it can be used as a cut off saw.

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                • #9
                  Nice job and story. I had not seen the use of a spacer block on an end stop - good tip right there.

                  When did the job stop getting exciting - around piece 87 or so?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Cool job Weston!
                    Peter - novice home machinist, modern motorcycle enthusiast.

                    Denford Viceroy 280 Synchro (11 x 24)
                    Herbert 0V adapted to R8 by 'Sir John'.
                    Monarch 10EE 1942

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                    • #11
                      Nice job Wes!

                      I gather you couldn't find a commercial equivalent, or you couldn't get them in time?
                      "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did."

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                      • #12
                        Just stumbled on this thread Weston...nice job.

                        BTW did you every get your filing machine up and running?
                        Bob
                        Pics of shop and some projects
                        http://s2.photobucket.com/albums/y39...achine%20Shop/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          gda- I was surprised, it went OK. I don't enjoy repetitive work, but I set things up with a comfortable chair, proper working height, and talk radio to listen to (some would say: to numb my mind) while I worked and got through it.

                          Lazlo- No indeed, there were no commercial or off-the-shelf equivalents available, and nothing that could have been adapted any easier than building from scratch. After I finished them we sent them out for tin over nickel plating.

                          Bob- The die filer still waits. work on magazine articles, projects like this, and a few others have crowded it out.

                          I will try to post some pictures of the terminals in the application in a day or two.
                          Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
                          ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Robo
                            I didn't think there were any good bosses left in this area Nice project appreciate the write up!

                            They are all being trained not to be. First the company promotes or hires the worst possible candidates for managers. Then they hear all the complaints so they hire a training firm to come in and give classes in "good management" or some buzz word that is currently in vogue. Of course, the company (upper management and owners) never monitors what they are being taught. The result is a bunch of zombie managers who are convinced that they are doing what the company wants. What the company demands.

                            Actually they are ruining the company from within. They destroy innovation. They punish any attempt at improvement from below. They crush any deviation from the norm.

                            Then the company (and those managers also) wonders why they are always beat out by the competition.

                            I know that the company I am presently working for would think I was only describing them in this rant. But the truth is, even though they are guilty, they are perhaps one of the better ones in this insanity. I have seen this in company after company. I have to wonder how does a person, who is so stupid as to fall for this, ever get to be a CEO?
                            Paul A.
                            SE Texas

                            Make it fit.
                            You can't win and there IS a penalty for trying!

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                            • #15
                              I also have done small production runs of parts for my company. I am salaried and "not permitted to work at home" so there is no way I can do it on company time. Therefore, I don't do it unless I have a signed purchase order in my hand that is made out to my company. This works great. They pay my price.
                              Paul A.
                              SE Texas

                              Make it fit.
                              You can't win and there IS a penalty for trying!

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