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  • Beginners Project Book

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    Last edited by JackD; 10-11-2014, 12:04 PM.
    I'm Happy because I am retired

  • #2
    Perhaps a bit ambitious, none the less, its the reason why I got into machining to begin with. Building a Live steam locomotive.
    Check out Kozo Hiraoko's book on building the Pennsy A3 switcher. First few steps are written so a rank beginner can understand how to do some things, later on, more advanced stuff is shown after you practiced making the easier parts. Be warned, you'll need a mill, but hey, thats going to happen sooner or later anyhow!

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    • #3
      The "Projects in Metal" books sold by the sponsors of this BBS have some beginners projects. Enough to keep you busy until you want to try something more advanced. Then they have some more advanced projects that will keep you busy until.....................well you know.
      To invent, you need a good imagination - and a pile of junk. Thomas A. Edison

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      • #4
        Machinists Workshop and Home Shop Machinist magazines are a good source of projects and they offer books as well. Books are offered from many of the major contributors articles acumulated over the years and Prjects books 1-7 of articles are also offered. They are a good source of prodjects for beginners and some old timers can often pick up a new technique also. Be Safe!!

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        • #5
          The paperback book "Machine Shop Projects" originally done by South Bend Lathe Works and reproduced by Lindsay Publication may be just what you have in mind. Try www.lindsaybks.com, it has 34 small projects of tools and accessories to make for your lathe and shop. Such items as a machinists clamp, small hammer, boring bar, milling arbor, etc. ISBN 1-55918-248-2

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          • #6
            There is no end to the Web sites that have projects to build. My first project was a small (very small) stationary steam engine that I run on compressed air. I can't recall the web address right now but will find it let you know. Another great site that I found is : http://homepage3.nifty.com/amigos/index-e.html This guy has made some very usefull things and has shared them on his site and has the photos and drawings there also, check him out. Enjoy and have fun, Mel
            _____________________________________________

            I would rather have tools that I never use, than not have a tool I need.

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            • #7
              Hi, I am new to the group but would like to chime in. Assuming that you are a beginner,I would suggest that you find small projects that interest you and that can be used in your shop. There are many plans or just photos on the web of small tooling items that are not too difficult and will be useful when building more difficult projects. I built a quick change tool holder from plans at Metalwebnews that worked out well. I find that I have challenge my abilities just enough to keep a project interesting without going too far over my head and getting bogged down. I get so many good ideas for solving my problems on a couple of forums like this one. Thanks guys for all of the info!
              Rick

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              • #8
                Start small. There are all kinds of simple steam engines you can make out of barstock. Doing a good job -- a really good job -- on one of those will give you more than enough headaches when you're first starting out.
                And being made from barstock, it won't matter as much when you have to make the same part 7 times before you get it right. Be prepared to do that, by the way. It's a normal part of the learning process. I imagine all of us have a box of "learning experiences" under the bench, somewhere.
                ----------
                Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
                Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
                Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
                There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
                Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
                Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

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                • #9
                  Start small. Simple projects that get progressively tougher to accomplish. Unfortunately we aren't going to go out and build that scale lathe or P&W R2800 right out of the box. At first it doesn't really even matter if you make scrap. #1 you are getting used to running machines and you will learn more from what went wrong than you ever will if you make no mistakes at all. The point is don't get frustrated when you screw up (and you will, I did as an apprentice often enough at first).And if you have question ask. That is what we are for those of us who have been around the block a couple of times. I've got a job waiting for me Monday at work I am not going to enjoy. 58MM x 12MM ISO Acme nuts made out of Ampco 18 (Aluminum Bronze Cu 80%, AL and Fe the balance in a 2 to 1 ratio forget which way) makes me wonder why I enjoy doing stuff for my own enjoyment.
                  Forty plus years and I still have ten toes, ten fingers and both eyes. I must be doing something right.

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                  • #10
                    Jack,
                    A few months back, i got my first cnc lathe, and while i was trying to learn how to program i made myself some chess pieces to practice tapers and radii and such.
                    Maybe you could do something like that?
                    p.s. a very good name, indeed.
                    jack

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                    • #11
                      I was in your shoes not long ago; I started out with steam engines and tooling. There is quite a lot of lathe tooling that is useful and easy to build; an example is a tool center height gauge. This is made on the lathe, a cylinder flat on the bottom, and the other end being right at lathe center. I made mine have the lathe center height part be an overhang, so that the tool tip would come up to meet the overhanging part. Think of a mushroom shape.

                      If you can find them, the Ed Warren steam engine books are great; I built several of his designs. Search on "Ed Warren" in this site.
                      www.powells.com may have them.

                      Also, Phil Duclos and others have really nice steam engine designs, and these books are offered in the store on the HSM site.

                      Lastly, there is a Yahoo group where all of Elmer Verburg's engines are available; about 50 steam engines of varying degrees of difficuly. Go to www.groups.yahoo.com
                      and search for "Elmer's Engines". You'll need to join the groups to see the plans, but that's painless.

                      Have fun!

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                      • #12
                        The first Rudy Kouhoupt book is a very good first book of projects. It starts with simple child's tops and works through several steam engines to a pretty complex compound unit. It is well written, as only Rudy could, and does not require anything more than a lathe to start with.
                        It is titled "The Shop Wisdom of Rudy Kouhoupt". It can keep you busy for a year or two.
                        Jim H.

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                        • #13
                          Searches have not located the mysterious Ed Warren.(this site, powell's books, abebooks, google,etc)

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                          • #14
                            Here is one of the projects out of the South Bend book that I made.

                            http://home.comcast.net/~tarum/hammer_pictures.html


                            I enjoyed making it and found it to be about the right level of difficulty for a beginner.

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                            • #15
                              Just to reinforce...

                              Look at this guys work as posted by lugnut - http://homepage3.nifty.com/amigos/index-e.html he does some very very nice work and also shows a lot of the different and varied setups required to get a job done.

                              Ben

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