Dream Garage / workshop.

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Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby geofff » Tue Jul 30, 2019 10:56 am

Hi,

Ok so the IT systems at work are down, what do you do...............

What does the dream garage / workshop look like for building your 750 racer?

thanks

Geoff
:)
geofff
 
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Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby Martin Kemp » Tue Jul 30, 2019 4:51 pm

If you are building it from scratch with GRP bodywork then there are 3 distinct processes that you need to carry out.

1. Build the metalwork, chassis, suspension, loads and loads and loads of brackety things.
A chassis jig is really helpful. 4x2 RSJs levelled and solidly mounted on lightweight concrete blocks is sufficient and easy to clamp to.

2. Make a bodybuck, take moulds and then make the mouldings.
This is carpentry with a lot of bodyfiller most of which you turn to dust.

3. Overhaul components and assemble the car.
A nice clean and well organised work space is probably what you need but I haven't actually managed to achieve that myself.

Lots of people have manged all of that in a single garage but a double would be much better.
It is difficult to do the chassis and body buck concurrently in the same workspace because the body produces so much dust. So my ideal is to have a separate shed for the bodywork. In my case a 1934 20ft x 10ft seaside chalet from Westward Ho!

My most useful tools are 1930s Grimston Mill/drill with an XY table, a 1964 Colchester Bantam lathe which is a sturdy lathe with a similar plan area to a Myford and a horizontal bandsaw. I also have a 1954 Herbert vertical milling machine - a bit like a small Bridgeport. These old machines are usually 3 phase which makes them cheap secondhand, but you can run them off a modern phase converter and since I can only use one machine at a time I have one converter that is switched between them. To fit these and a chassis in you need a garage about 14ft wide.
I have also made a small gantry crane with an electric hoist and castors that can just lift the Falcon. This is particularly useful when it returns with only 3 wheels.

A big improvement to the workshop has been to install LED daylight lighting. It is more expensive to buy but has low running costs and the light is superb and much more pleasant than strip lights which I hate.

Martin

PS I have reviewed this post for compliance with the new Jacob Rees Mogg rules, so it is fit for purpose...oh bugger!
Martin Kemp
 
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Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby geofff » Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:51 am

Hi Martin,

I had to look at the news to find out the latest on Rees-Mogg…….. err no comment.

I used a Colchester student and Bridgeport type milling machine at Chippenham College on a model engineering course. Knocked up bushes, top hat spacers, fuel pump bracket and a gearknob - apprentice level stuff but fun. I've seen a few on Ebay / Facebook but always been worried about buying a dog, any tips?

Currently without garage but have just purchased two acres fifteen minutes walk from the house. I feel a barn planning application coming on...…

I've worked on the Westfield GRP, post a similar incident at Cadwell to you (I was the car who stalled though) and dust was an issue, although I had good weather so did most of the sanding in the garden. I was looking at 3D printing either bucks or bodywork for the future 750 car, what do you reckon?

Thanks

Geoff
:)
geofff
 
Posts: 64
Joined: Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:43 pm

Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby Martin Kemp » Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:30 pm

Colchester Lathes are so robust that they are quite hard to wear out. Schools or tech colleges quite often sell of machines that haven't seen much use.
There is a pin in the drive system that shears if someone does something silly like running the tool into the chuck. These are often replaced with something like an old screw or a paper clip and break soon after you get home. It isn't really a problem it just needs replacing but it can very disheartening if you don't know about it

The important thing to check is how worn the bed is close to the chuck where it sees most use. If you cannot find any play with the saddle close to the chuck then wind the saddle back to the other end of the bed. If it runs smoothly all the way then it is good. The play is adjustable so if someone has tightened it up close to the chuck then the saddle will get stuck before it gets to the other end of the bed. Mine does this but I rarely make long parts and I can slacken off the adjustment if I need to. It just means that the lathe is not worth as much.
Take the chuck off and check that the mounting taper is not damaged by some erg hitting it or failing to clean off any swarf before refitting the chuck.

There are various tests you can do to check the accuracy and alignment of a lathe and you should be able to find them on line. Basically you need about a 6 in length of ground bar and a dial gauge and you can check out a lathes accuracy without having to run it.
A lathe is a lot more useful if it comes with a face plate(you can use it to skim discs) and a set of collets for accurate turning.

Colchester bantams can have a single or dual speed motor - the dual speed motor needs a more expensive phase converter. Drives Direct have all the info you need.
If you have a 2 acre workshop you can get an even larger lathe such as a Colchester Student or Chipmaster which may be cheaper because they too big for most people. You might even be able to get 3 Phase laid on but I bet it is expensive.

I don't like to seem curmudgeonly about CAD - bizarrely - I was CADCAM Magazine reader of the year in about 1989.
I have used 3D CAD, FEA, Rapid Protyping, Mould flow analysis and tooling software. All good stuff for mass production or expensive machines, but for an amateur it takes too long to build up sufficiently detailed CAD models and too expensive to manufacture them too make it worth while.
Exceptions would be LASER cut parts and complex 3D machined parts like uprights. But for a one off car there are cheaper and quicker alternatives.
As I am sure you know CAD helps you use your skill and knowledge more effectively but it will also make your mistakes more expensive.

We make the bodywork by making a wooden chassis adding all the sticky-out bits and clothing it with stiff closed cell foam. This can be easily shaped with a long board and sand paper. Then it is covered with body filler and sanded smooth and painted to give a body buck to take moulds from and the mouldings should fit the car. It is a long part of the job but you will be able to see what the full size car is going to look like before you make the moulds,

Martin
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Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby geofff » Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:04 pm

HI Martin,

Not sure about a two acre workshop, I think the wife is thinking horses, lambs and chickens. The "Good Life" and thick wool jumpers :lol:

I was thinking multiple two garage workshops in one corner of the plot, which would be ideal to rent out to local petrol heads. All would have to form part of an agri business proposal for planning. I notice a few rent a garage & tools / ramps businesses cropping up on the net.

I was thinking invertors for correcting the three phase motor possibility same as you. And as my eyesight worsens with age I like an excess of light.

I've looked at Drives Direct and will do some research on lathe accuracy checking. Backup plan is to do another model engineering course in Chippenham and ask one of the instructors if he/she knows of kit going spare.... I can always start my uprights there, I was thinking copy Triumphs as they seem to be popular :)

I'm continuing to plod on with Onshape online learning, and yes it is a bit of a monster.

Hopefully (Rees Mogg) will spectate at Donington.

Thanks

Geoff
:)
geofff
 
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Joined: Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:43 pm

Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby F1300Tony » Mon Aug 05, 2019 3:58 pm

Spot on with the lathe advice, Martin.
The only thing I would add to the ideal workshop concept is to chemically treat and then paint concrete floors white before you move the stuff in. This halves the dust and makes it easier to find things you drop. Watco is the place to go for the paint and if it will stand fork lift truck use it will stand jacks, axle stands, etc. Do it and thank yourself every time you sweep up.
I almost always had out-of-hours access to a very nice machine shop throughout my working life. Once I retired I missed that and I could not afford-- (the budget was not authorised) a 'proper' lathe or a Myford work of art, so I bought an old Chinese hobby lathe with milling attachment very cheaply on Eb-y. There are all sorts of makes but they are really all the same. On paper this has it all, plenty of diameter through the headstock for trailing arms, swing diameter for flywheels. In practise the tiny drive belts probably do not allow turning large diameters, however that makes it very safe. The machining quality of the less important parts is quite amusing, but the serious parts like the headstock bearings are fine. It is awkward to use, especially changing from milling to turning. Handles seem to be in the way all the time and the stroke of the tailstock and the milling head vertical movement is too small. Having said all that I have done quite a bit on it and I think it would be a reasonable choice for a home constructor on a tight budget. The older ones have steel change gears, but the newer ones plastic. For one car you could consider farming out all the machining and save the cost of the lathe but where would the fun be in that?
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Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby Martin Kemp » Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:51 pm

Warco Tools sell a very complete range of branded imported machines and lots small tools, as do Axminster.
Warco who are near Chiddingford also have open days where all sorts of old machines are sold off to a waiting crowd of old codgers, like chickens fighting over a wheelbarrow load of weeds or old ladies at a jumble sale.
Too right with the floor Tony - how I regret using cheap floor paint in my garage.

Martin
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Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby geofff » Mon Aug 05, 2019 8:59 pm

My second last garage got a B&Q special green paint covering followed by floor tiles - god send for the knees working on the Westfield. I think I'm going to switch to a movable sofa cushion when I get this next garage up and running.

What about hiring a polisher for the concrete?

Just spoke to my bodywork guy and there's an 'old' boy in the houses next to his workshop with his own lathe & mill. Just happy to run things up apparently - I might see if I can pop along and get some help / training / advice for grateful beer tokens. I'm definitely looking to make as much as I can myself.

I'm on the Axminster email subscribe list already but buying new is expensive and every person you talk to mentions the lack of quality in the modern kit compared to the old. Plus you don't get the extras which often comes with second hand kit.

Thanks

Geoff
:)
geofff
 
Posts: 64
Joined: Thu Mar 14, 2019 8:43 pm

Re: Dream Garage / workshop.

Postby Martin Kemp » Tue Aug 06, 2019 6:47 am

Older stuff is definitely better but you need to consider transport - a decent sized older machine will weigh about 400 kg

Martin
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