Success!

One down. three to go! This shot shows the jig I completed today. It is not only finished but the inner faces of the central jig, the part that actually have to be accurate to set the distance between the rails, are surprisingly the correct dimension. At 16.57mm it is close enough for me! 🙂 I included it’s big SG brother to provide a comparison.

Strike up the band, crack open a  bottle of champagne, I’m now an expert machinist who can answer all your metal turning questions and inquiries. NOT! I managed to get one of the gauges finished today, that’s the first of four I have planned. I never should have dropped Metalwork for Music as an elective subject in high school. The other three gauges have the two outer caps finished for each of them and they’re all strung together on their cap bolts. All they need is the centre gauge section completed. However I’m so slow and my metal turning skills so decrepit that it took me 1 1/2 hours to do the centre gauge for this one today. I tend to speed up as I go along and work out a method: a couple of steps really had me stumped today as I worked on this one. At one point I had to work out how to turn the face of the centre section down on the right hand end. As my cutting tool has its cutting face on the left had side this forced me to take another tool with a face cut on the opposite side and grind this to a shape that I needed. This process was well outside my comfort zone but it worked and I now have a slightly rough, but serviceable gauge. Oh and it does grip the head of the code 83 rail it’s designed to hold in place, I tested it! 🙂

I’m sure in the years to come I’ll have the satisfaction of knowing I made these gauges myself, and the twinge at the back of my neck will remind of how sore it got from bending over my lathe peering at the twirling end of the brass 🙂

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