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The apprentice and the motor

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  • The apprentice and the motor

    About a year ago I started helping a 15 year old learn how to use the machines in my shop. Julian AKA "The Apprentice" spends 3 hours each Saturday morning in my shop. For a school project he decided to build a "Steam Engine" as history was part of the assignment. from Steam and Stirling Book 2 he chose an engine.To build the engine he used 2 different lathes, A Bridgeport mill with a DRO, a ProLight CNC mill, and a drill press. He got experiences with heat shrinking a rim on the flywheel, winding coil springs, silver brazing copper, drawing and machining with CAD and CAM. There is also a bit of layout work and some drilling and tapping a number of threads.

    My total hands on part of the project was cutting the wood base, everything else was Julian's work. He started the engine in mid April and finished it this morning. There were several side projects that slowed progress a bit.

    It runs on 2-1/2 to 3 PSI regulated air pressure.

    Last edited by Stepside; 10-11-2015, 08:18 PM. Reason: Book 2 not book1

  • #2
    Nicely done. He is off to a good start on what can
    be a life-long calling if he desires. Has to be very
    gratifying to be playing some not-so-small part in

    Looking forward to seeing future projects of his, be
    they engines like this one, motors like Davenport's
    or whatever takes his fancy.




    • #3
      A 3 cylinder wobbler? Impressive! I hope you can take some video of it running. Should look (and sound) very interesting.
      Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
      USA Maryland 21030


      • #4
        Way cool! I'm impressed by both of you.
        David Kaiser
        “You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.”
        ― Robert A. Heinlein


        • #5
          I like it! (Just finished a V-twin wobbler myself.) Lots of holes to drill in the right place!

          Julian won't have any problems measuring and cutting parts for the rest of his days, fence posts, fine woodworking, machine work, etc.

          I had a mentor back in the day, his name was Alex. I wish I could dig him out of his grave and tell him how much the things he taught me have helped me all these years.

          I cut it off twice; it's still too short
          Oregon, USA


          • #6
            Originally posted by 38_Cal View Post
            Way cool! I'm impressed by both of you.
            Well said and Ditto...

            watch out Brian - kids catching up fast


            • #7
              Lucky kid, to have an interest AND a mentor and access to machinery. He's off to a good start in life. I have one Grandson interested in machining and he has landed an apprentice spot repairing CNC machines. He is happy as a pig in ----! Bob.


              • #8
                You sir are a gentleman and a scholar!!

                And Julian is a lucky fella because of it. It also looks as though he has developed some talent.

                Congrats to both of you.

                Last edited by becksmachine; 10-11-2015, 11:41 AM. Reason: Not quite sure where I got Alex from??


                • #9
                  Well done, you have however passed on the metal bug, once caught there's no cure, heavy iron is the only treatment, and you need to surround yourself with thousands of pounds of shielding iron to gain any relief from it's symptoms, joking?
                  Nice little project, think I need mentoring too!


                  • #10
                    Out of twenty or thirty kids in metal shop each year there is usually one or two that give me that kind of satisfaction at the end. :-)


                    • #11
                      Stepside, my compliments to both you and Julian. You are to be saluted for taking the time and patience to instruct this young man. You may tell Julian, for what it may be worth to him, that a veteran of a half century of machining experience and teacher of machine shop technology at the university graduate level thinks he did an outstanding job.


                      • #12
                        It's a priceless gift that will keep on giving on both sides,

                        Wait till the kid finds out that you can add a combustible mix, put it under compression and then add spark,,,

                        You know something --- those "wobblers" create a unique situation for a potential two stroke - pivot the Jug in the middle and create an intake port ABOVE the piston and directly linked to the crankcase (your guess is as good as mine how to seal the crankcase off with a rocking jug)

                        then have a typical side port down low on the cylinder for the exhaust that also rocks and matches up to the wobbler port timing,

                        now you have a much more efficient two stroke that does not throw the baby out with the bath water as it's intake charge clears from top to bottom,,, instead of just going straight across and some of it going right out the exhaust --- whilst leaving part of the burnt charge (and therefore lack of oxygen) in the upper half...

                        Of course some Diesel two strokes already get this done just in inherent design, and with the up and coming direct injection gas two strokes some of the concern for this will be obsolete - still, could be a cool experiment...

                        sealing off the upper intake pivot against combustion pressure's might also be a bit of a hat trick...


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Stepside View Post
                          My total hands on part of the project was cutting the wood base, ...
                          At least you handled the tricky part for him, and protected him from dangerous activity like sawing and sanding.
                          Nice job, Julian obviously has a very good teacher to guide him.
                          Location: Long Island, N.Y.


                          • #14
                            I'm sure the youngster will get a top reference when he leaves school.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Tim Clarke View Post

                              I had a mentor back in the day, his name was Alex. I wish I could dig him out of his grave and tell him how much the things he taught me have helped me all these years.

                              He knew all along, it just took you a while to realize it as well.