Indiscriminate photos #7

Some shots of Jillian and I’s quick trip to Washington D.C. early last week.

Posted in: Photography

Making A Better Lathe Banjo Pt. 4

This past weekend I was able to finish of the gear bushings. The bushings are an interesting part to make, because they require what most would consider tight tolerances for a home machine shop. As you can see in the print below, the bushing bore, and outside diameter had tolerances of only a few tenths. Thankfully extreme concentricity wasn’t required so a simple jig/mandrel could be used to hold the parts.

Overall it went pretty well, because while it was repetitive all the steps where pretty simple. I did however scrap the very first part because I was overzealous. I was trying to turn down the outside diameter to close to the final dimension, and ended up undersized and out of tolerance. After my initial mistake, I made sure to leave a little extra material on the remaining parts, so I could bring them within tolerance with wet dry paper.


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Posted in: Machining, Videos
Part of the Project

Making A Better Lathe Banjo Pt. 3

Friday night I finished up machining the banjos, and I have to say I’m very pleased with the results. Initially, I was concerned that the jig wouldn’t be rigid enough, but it ended up working perfectly fine. I had one minor machining related issue, and that was that the hot rolled 4140 I used to make one of the pins, machines very poorly. It was east enough to work around, it’s just one of those things that annoys me.

This is the first video I’ve done with the new mic, and I had some interference issues in a few clips. I wasn’t able to correct them in post this time around, but thanks to my buddy Doug and some testing on my part, we where able to figure out the cause so I won’t have any issues in the future. As a side note I’ve been playing with post processing audio with the Auphonic web service, and desktop application. It does an amazing job of automatically cleaning up the audio, with not real work on my part.


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Posted in: Machining, Videos
Part of the Project

Making A Better Lathe Banjo Pt. 2

Part two of the series starts off with drilling and boring the banjo mounting hole. Boring with a quality boring head is easy to do, but it can be laborious if you have to remove a lot of material like I did. After finishing the mounting hole, I show drilling and tapping for the clamping bolt. The video finishes up with one of my personal bugaboos, slitting the banjo. If you stick around to the end of the video, you’ll see me point out a dumb mistake I made.


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Posted in: Machining, Videos
Part of the Project

Making A Better Lathe Banjo Pt. 1

I’ve never really been happy with the change gears set-up for my Harbor Freight 8×14. Don’t get me wrong it works exactly as it’s supposed to, it’s just finicky to the point that I never want to change it. Now that I have a mill and the appropriate tooling, I’ve decided it’s time do do something about it. This video is the first in a series that will document the changes I’m making in the hope of improving the change gear system. As unusual, I’ll post plans and relevant photos.


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Posted in: Machining, Videos
Part of the Project