Lumps and bumps

November fog is my favourite flavour. As a kid, I loved the rapid progression from school start, to dark nights, then Halloween and bonfire night. Throw in a few pea-soup problems and Autumn is the funnest season.

Got a lump on my head from colliding with the lowered Smithy roller door. I was lubing up the new machines and had to block the bright, low-angled sun when I forgot to duck. M said, “Did Frys Hill teach you nothing?”. We had a very low kitchen doorway in Bristol.

The big lathe has been worrying me, hence the urgency for lubrication. Ken Dodde warned me to shorten the new drive belt and even provided connectors and pins but his admission that the machine hadn’t been used for a year sowed a seed. The first lump of cherry was rotating happily, though I could feel the belt slipping, when a sweet burning smell arose. The worry mounted until I realised that the old-fashioned fixed centre in the tailstock was burning the workpiece, as it should. In any case, I swapped in a live centre from Al’s one-year-old lathe and carried on turning for a while. Then, yesterday, when I was showing off the monster to Kevin, I noticed him wince as I engaged warp speed and a bearing started complaining. Rats! So today, having translated all the quarter-century old lubricant recommendations into just a couple of modern equivalents, I worked my way around the lube points: about eighteen on the metalwork lathe, half a dozen on the milling machine which aren’t addressed by its automatic pump, and about a dozen oil caps and nipples on the Wadkin. Chris arrived and, having not learnt the lesson yet, I engaged top speed and there was the same noise. Buggered? Nope: the Warland little folk had made the live centre’s bearing pack up, just to freak me out. There’s a reason such devices weren’t trusted by those old-timers. Back to the sweet smell of cherry, charring in the morning.

It looks like I might have to build a drum sander because Monica has ordered un-sanded oak floorboards; and it makes sense to finish them before they go down. Floor sanders are horrid. I have a 1 ½ hp, German saw motor and I can now make any arrangement of rollers, gears and pulleys. A two-foot drum sander with a 30″ disc sander on the end is in my mind.

I also envisage making my own router table with a crank height adjustment. 

Back to the shed; must learn to duck at the door! =:D

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