Is anyone able/willing to make two thin stainless plates?

  1. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    Let me add I'm not asking for a freebie - I'm very happy and would expect to pay for any fabrication. I'm currently restoring an old Startrite Mercury pillar drill and one plate is missing and the other is in a pretty poor state. The plates in question are the one that holds the on/off switch to the main body of the drill and the decorative one that should bear the 'Startrite Mercury' emblem on the front section of the drill; this is the missing one.

    Originally it seems that all the plates on the drill were made out of thin gauge aluminium (less than 1mm). The thinness of the metal has caused the on/off switch plate to suffer somewhat, as it has had to support the switch and endure countless power cycles over the years. A plate in stainless should have a lot more resistance to wear and tear, especially if the sheet gauge was slightly heavier. Here's a picture of the original plate and the relevant measurements.
    Startrite_Mercury_01.JPG

    The overall diameter of the plate is 3 inches, but this could profitably be increased a little to 80mm or so. Apologies for the mix of metric and imperial. Dimensions between fixing centres would obviously have used Imperial measurements when the drill was made, but hole dimensions are (for me) more easily expressed in metric.

    The other plate would (as far as I can tell) be essentially egg-shaped; i.e. an oval of some description. It would bolt onto the front of the cast piece that sits ahead of the front spindle. Hopefully the photo makes it easier to understand.

    Startrite_Mercury_02.JPG

    What isn't evident from the photo is that the front of the cast piece is slightly curved. It curves slightly inward from the centre to the sides, and so here thin gauge sheet would be an advantage, as that would conform better to the slight bend. This piece is purely decorative and only has to support its own weight.

    Any help with this is greatly appreciated.

    Graham
     
  2. Agroshield Member

    Messages:
    1,366
    Are you not able to do it through lack of material or lack or tools?

    Print out what you want on a sheet of paper, stick it onto the sheet, centre punch and drill by hand.

    I could send you an A4 sheet of 0.9mm stainless for the cost of postage.

    I would strongly recommend you print out an ellipse of the dimensions you show and do a trial fit to see if it looks right. That is the only shape that someone can make you knowing the major and minor axis dimensions. If it does not fit, then you will have to make a good looking template and send it to your fabricator.
     
    mangocrazy likes this.
  3. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    Lack of tools, mainly. I could acquire the stainless sheet off ebay, but have no means of making a true circle of that size or even a convincing ellipse. Take your point about printing out an ellipse and doing a trial fit. I'll get that done.
     
  4. hotponyshoes Member

    Messages:
    3,377
    Location:
    Somerset. Uk
    You could try having them 3d printed then you could recess the lettering and infill it with paint/resin afterwards.
    Not sure how it will hold up compared to a bit of stainless but it would be easy enough to make it a lot thicker than that.
     
  5. Parm

    Parm Oh how I’ve missed my play pen this year

    Messages:
    13,057
    Location:
    Towcester
    Compass, hacksaw and a couple of files should do the trick. Bit of marking out and drill hole holes

    Other techniques are available subject to what machinery may be available
     
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  6. Brad93

    Brad93 M J B Engineering

    Messages:
    10,386
    Location:
    Essex
    Could do this on the plasma for you. So you want 1.0mm thick stainless the same as the aluminium?

    I have probably got that here somewhere

    I’d cut the circle on the plasma and centre mark the holes with the arc. Then drill through.
     
  7. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    @Agroshield - Good work getting me to print out a working copy. As a result I've modified the sizes for the ellipse. This is what works when offered up:
    Startrite_Mercury_02.jpg
    @Parm - I can just imagine the monstrosity that would emerge if I tried that... :laughing:

    @Brad93 - That sounds great. For the ellipse above the thinnest stainless you have (within reason) would be ideal. For the motor off/on switch plate 1mm would be fine, but slightly thicker (anything up to 2mm) would probably be preferable. But to be honest whatever you have will be absolutely fine. The above drawing was done in TurboCad (although the b is often substituted for a d) and it maintains it can export in different formats if needed.
     
  8. Seadog

    Seadog Forum Supporter

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    6,970
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    The switch plate would seem to be a nice little exercise in laser marking for someone.
     
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  9. Agroshield Member

    Messages:
    1,366
    How do you surmise they were done originally? His is a variation on a theme. All the Santon switches were very similar. I wonder if it was screen printed cf julianf's stuff). Is it possible to selectively black anodise something?
     
  10. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    Screen printing sounds favourite - it's definitely an ink-based medium. A light whiff of alcohol and the ink comes off. A wipe of acetone would leave you with plain ali.
     
  11. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    And here is a Turbocad drawing of the switch plate. God, I hate working in Imperial units.
    Startrite_Mercury_03.JPG
     
  12. Seadog

    Seadog Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    6,970
    Location:
    NE London - UK

    I would think screen printing.
     
  13. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    The more I think about it, all I need are the outline shapes (3 inch round and a 106mm x 62mm ellipse). I can easily drill the required holes myself. Ideally round in 1.5 - 2mm stainless, ellipse in 0.9mm stainless. Does that make it easier?
     
    Brad93 likes this.
  14. Brad93

    Brad93 M J B Engineering

    Messages:
    10,386
    Location:
    Essex
    Turns out I’ve only got the smallest little bit of stainless sheet left.

    Everything else is around 3mm thick.

    can order a bit if you still want it - it’s about £7.00 for a bit of stainless big enough from eBay. But obviously I don’t know how soon it would arrive.
     
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  15. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    Hi Brad, thanks for that offer. Everything is going at a snail's pace at the moment so a few extra days isn't going to hurt. Would it be easier for me to buy the stainless sheet off ebay and get it sent to you? Very happy to do that.
     
  16. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    This morning a chunky jiffy bag popped through my letter box, containing 4 metal profiles - two in stainless and two in mild steel (templates). Cheers Brad! Hugely appreciated. Once I've got them fixed in place I'll post up photos. But I have one question for Brad - where did you get that military/industrial grade masking tape from? You could use that stuff intead of stitches for major surgery...
     
  17. Brad93

    Brad93 M J B Engineering

    Messages:
    10,386
    Location:
    Essex
    It’s 3M car body tape.

    sorry I put so much on I’ve got issues haha!

    saying that I’ve had two drills through the post I was lucky to receive because they’ve broken through! One was a 42mm Dormer!
     
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  18. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    42mm Dormer? Jeez. How many minutes per revolution would that need on stainless? :) No probs with the layers. Must get hold of some of that tape.
     
    Brad93 likes this.
  19. Screwdriver

    Screwdriver Forum Supporter

    Messages:
    6,899
    UK London
    Hi mangocrazy, sorry have no idea of your level of talent so thought I'd warn you just in case; drilling holes in sheet stainless is a non trivial task. If you're not careful you can work harden it before you're halfway through, burn up a drill bit or tear a ragged hole and leave a bump/crater. Not that I've ever done that of course :whistle: but y'know, I've heard it can be tricky. Especially if you only get one shot at a unique part.
     
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  20. mangocrazy

    mangocrazy Italian V-twin nutjob

    Messages:
    954
    Location:
    Sheffield, UK
    Yes, appreciate that stainless is tricky stuff. I'll be clamping the parts to a wooden backing and then drilling the holes in a drill press that the parts are destined for, using the slowest speed available (530 rpm). For a 3mm hole, that should be close enough to the recommended speed for that size drill in stainless (485 rpm). And using firm pressure to get the drill to 'bite'.
     
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