Beginner to the fold #1

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Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 5:41 am

Well the deed has been done.
Had a very enjoyable visit to STW last Thursday (28/02/19).

Walked(?) away with a slightly dented bank account, two vulcanised front wheel rims and a box full of random bits (if I do the typical man thing and ignore the instructions).
The quality of the stuff I saw at the factory, plus what I brought home with me, makes me think that this will be worth every penny spent.

Not sure how you build a half tonne traction engine in a first floor flat though. Oh, you don't. You use your sons garage!

So thanks to Dean et al. Hope your house move is continuing well mate!

A little conversation that occurred on the day and just hit my funny bone:
ME: "So how do you change gear Dean?"
DEAN: "You stop, remove the locking screw, move lever, put locking screw back in, start moving again".
Absolutely brilliant! It was all I could do to not roll around on the floor laughing. Kept me amused all the way back to Cheltenham!


Last edited by John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 10:13 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Changed title to reflect the possible number of questions I may be asking!)
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  lynnr on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 11:30 am

Hi and welcome aboard John

Yes traction engines are strange "beasties" indeed. You will be able to build all the component parts, wheels, smoke box, tender, cylinder block with fittings etc and do a lot of fettling in the first floor flat. It is only when the boiler comes that the sub assemblies can finally come together.

When I built Crystal 4" showman. She was stored in sub assembly form in my bedroom. Rear wheels and axle under the bed, Smokebox and front wheels under the window, tender and belly tank under the telly. You get the idea.

Yes some say it is expensive buying a fully machined kit but you do not need the space and the expense of a mill, a lathe etc.

You get use to looking ahead and thinking what gear should be used. With the showman having 3. I stick in 2nd on the rally field. This allows a very easy walking pace to be held with the engine not working very hard and turning over quite slowly. 3rd only really being used on the open road. Giving the engine a purposeful speed without over revving the engine. But watch those hills!

And again. Welcome
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  bazzer on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 2:53 pm

Hi John,
As Lynn said welcome aboard.
You will enjoy the build most of the time, but just to warn you, there will be some things that will frustrate, best thing to do is walk away and consult the forum.
There will definitely be someone here who can help, as found with my build.

Good luck and enjoy.
Barry
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  LiveSteam on Wed 06 Mar 2019, 10:22 pm

Welcome to the nutty world of steam John.

I am the black sheep here as I'm not a builder, just owner driver for the past 5yrs as I just wouldnt have the patience or an understanding wife to have bits of engine around the house for two years. I enjoy the tinkering and playing, although we have built a 5" Polly loco kit engine before so we know how these things go together, just its about 13 times heavier Laughing
However as Lynn says the fact you dont need a work shop with 1000's of pounds of kit to build it is a big plus and allows me to run mine as when I need the odd spare they are normally just a phone call away Cool

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 7:59 pm

bazzer wrote:....
You will enjoy the build most of the time, but just to warn you, there will be some things that will frustrate, best thing to do is walk away....
Good luck and enjoy.
Barry
Well, we hit the first issue just trying to build the front wheels! Took the kit from Cheltenham to "the middle of nowhere" Ilchester, fettled everything, then when trying to do the dry assembly discovered that the 1/4" UNF or 6mm rivet bolts wouldn't fit through the spokes as they hadn't been drilled! Size was something like 5.5mm dia flame cut I'm assuming? You ever tried to buy a 6mm drill in Ilchester?

Once bitten twice shy they say. The annoying bit is that the Kit 1 box had been sat in my front room in Cheltenham for 10 days, opened and looked (drooled?) over but not closely inspected. And no more than 12ft. from a multitude of drill bits I have here, including an array of 6mm!

Hey Ho! I'll learn!

(So what size are the rivet bolts for the rear wheels, just to be prepared?!?)
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  Midwest Steam on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 8:22 pm

The rears are the same as from front if I remember correctly (1/4 is what I used). I think Ive also burned up about 3-4 titanium drill bits in the process. Some cutting oil will help the bits to last longer as well, but be cautious because the metal will heat up and burns are no fun. Itll get so hot the metal will turn into smoke, on second thought maybe a reamer bit would work better.



Last edited by Midwest Steam on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 10:59 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  lynnr on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 8:41 pm

Hi

As will all issues. If there is a problem best talk with STW and if you are not happy re-drilling yourself the option is always there to return the parts and they will be sorted and sent back or replaced.

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  elwood-59 on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 9:27 pm

Hi,

Found out the same thing, rivet threads M6, shank 1/4. My idea was to use a reamer, dry assembled the wheels with off- the-shelf M6 allen head bolts and nuts in two of the three holes per rivet for preassembly. After all was set I reamed the untouched bore to a bit under 1/4, inserted the rivet bolt and normal
hex head nut all around then went back and did the other ones one at a time. Finally I replaced all
hex head nuts by the special rivet nuts one by one. After a bit of cleaning, all was painted.

Same for rear wheels only there you have 4 rivet bolts per spoke, so 2+2 was how it was done.

Cheers

Elwood
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  Mark the spark on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 9:56 pm

The rivet shank is 1/4 and I used a reamer with no problem

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 10:38 pm

Mark the spark wrote:The rivet shank is 1/4 and I used a reamer with no problem
And I've just checked them and yes! They are 1/4".

Imagine my angst if in 2 weeks time I'd gone back to Ilchester with 6mm drilled holes and they still wouldn't bloody fit?? Evil or Very Mad Very Happy

Anyway, the box of bits from Kit 1 are back in Cheltenham for 2 weeks where I can open up the spoke holes, chamfer the spokes with air tools, possibly shot blast the bits that need to be de-scaled, at my employers leisure, at work, obviously during my lunch breaks of course.


Last edited by John Bull on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 10:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Sun 10 Mar 2019, 10:49 pm

lynnr wrote:As will all issues. If there is a problem best talk with STW and if you are not happy re-drilling yourself the option is always there to return the parts and they will be sorted and sent back or replaced.
Hi lynnr,
Not a problem at all, just a bit of finishing off I wasn't expecting that arose and bit me on my nether region just because I'd not thought about it. I forgot that you should always be prepared for the unexpected.

Regards John
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  bazzer on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 7:21 pm

Hi John,
Re removing mill scale, I took the advice of other builders on here and use patio/brick cleaner.
A 15 minute dip and the scale falls off, but rinse really well with clean water after or the rust will appear before your eyes.


Barry
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  Mark the spark on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 8:16 pm

I had all my bit blasted with powdered glass and it gives a lovely finish for painting

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 8:44 pm

Mark the spark wrote:The rivet shank is 1/4 and I used a reamer with no problem
Would that have been a hand reamer in a tap holder or set up onto a pedestal drill?
If a hand reamer I'm prepared to borrow, I mean, buy one! (but only because I love tools!!)
Thinking multi spiral or straight fluted from Tracy Tools.


Last edited by John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 8:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 8:52 pm

bazzer wrote:Re removing mill scale, I took the advice of other builders on here and use patio/brick cleaner.
Stoopid question #2 (and there will be loads of them!!) When you're talking scale, do you mean the "black" finish on the un-machined edges/faces?
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  Mark the spark on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 8:57 pm

Hi John
it was a machine reamer in a pillar drill on the slowest setting

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 8:59 pm

Cheers Mark.
Where's the Thanks button when you need one! Embarassed
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  Mark the spark on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 9:12 pm

No problem John
If you want to see pics of my engine have a look on my facebook page

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  bazzer on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 10:01 pm

John,
Yes black deposit, it's a pain to get off with flap wheels etc.

Barry
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 10:14 pm

Mark the spark wrote:No problem John
If you want to see pics of my engine have a look on my facebook page
Do you have a link? Though I'm not a facebook lover.
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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  Mark the spark on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 10:20 pm

Hi John
I have no idea how to do that I am not that great on computers That's why my pics are not on here
Just do a friends search for Mark Steven in Edinburgh

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Re: Beginner to the fold #1

Post  John Bull on Mon 11 Mar 2019, 10:21 pm

Mark the spark wrote:Just do a friends search for Mark Steven in Edinburgh
Will do that. Thanks
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