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Wm. R. Robertson

Miniature Machinist's Tools

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Wm. R. Robertson

I made a 1 1/2" scale machinist's chest and what good would a chest be without the tools to go in it…. so I made the tools. I'll shown some of the tools and tell a little about how they were made, ask questions because this was a pretty complex project.

 

Here is the link to the chest   http://www.fineminiaturesforum.com/index.php?/topic/23-i8th-scale-machinists-tool-chest-c-1880/

 

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Here are the steel rules sitting on a mirror…. they are engraved on both sides! This is not easy. Also the 12" rule which is 1 1/2" long has just shy of 1000 lines engraved on it plus the numbers. I did these on a Deckel Pantograph made in 1928… I am only the 3rd owner of this machine and it is still in fine condition.

 

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Here I am setting up the machine….

 

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Wm. R. Robertson

To engrave these tools first you make a larger scale magnesium pattern, the reason I use magnesium it is slippery and the tracer glides over it smoothly giving a nice line. I this case I'm working on the protractor.

 

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Then you carefully engrave each line raising and lowering the diamond stylus each time...

 

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Once engraved the shape is cut out with a jewelers saw

 

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The steel knobs are turned, threaded and knurled on the lathe…. these really work just like about everything I make.

 

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Here they are next to the original which was made by J. R. Brown & Sharpe in the 1860s

 

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Wm. R. Robertson

The inside and outside calipers were cut out with a jewelers saw and the edges filed to a slight radius…… then riveted with just enough friction to adjust to size…… here they are shown with the originals… the four smallest of each size are the miniatures.

 

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One thing that I just love is beautiful wood on tool handles, so why should my miniatures be any different. This piece of wood came from Denmark and you can see it was perfect for the hammer.

 

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I think that is about enough for now…. ask and I'll post more.

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ElgaKoster

All the tools are so amazing, you sure have a great collection of real tools...I can only dream of owning such tools...if I came across some, I am not even sure I would know what it is and what they can do.

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metalchips

These wee tools have always fascinated me and I wondered how those teeny, tiny lines were put in the metal. Thank you for the explanation.

 

Cheers,

 

Tom

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Catherine Ronan
Bill,

 

I am very curious about the Deckel Pantograph. What what it originally designed for?

 

They sure don't make tools like they used to. I bet it works just as well as it did in 1928.

 

The chest is really beautiful. Did you made a special one for yourself like you did with the carpenters chest?

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Wm. R. Robertson

Deckel made milling machines and pantographs. The pantographs are basically a tracing milling machine. They are made in both 2 D and 3D versions. This model GO is by far the smallest they ever made, many of their others weigh over a ton. It was used for engraving, profiling, graduating small dials, etc.

I once had a engraver come over, he had bought a new Deckel in the 1980's.... He checked out mine and said the spindle was just as tight as his after all these years..... Now that's quality!

I made 6 of these and never finished the one for me...... Got to do that some day, and then do a 4 drawer...... With even more tools.....

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Catherine Ronan

Thank you for telling me about it.

 

I would have loved to own one of those pantographs. I can think of lots of things I would use one for. 

 

I used to have Magnesium plates made for designs I wanted to use for roll printing on metal. You can only use them a couple of times before they flatten out. It was a great way for me to get what looked like a in scale engraving on any type sheet metal.

 

Why do these photos come out so big? This tray is just 1 1/4 inch long in sterling silver.

 

 

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Moderator1

The photos are set to show up big.... We hate little tiny photos that you can't the details.

"I used to have Magnesium plates made for designs I wanted to use for roll printing on metal. You can only use them a couple of times before they flatten out. It was a great way for me to get what looked like a in scale engraving on any type sheet metal." I am not sure what you mean by this? Can you explain or start a topic on roll printing on metal..... Thanks.

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Catherine Ronan

You can think of roll printing metal almost the same as what you do with polymer clay using a pasta machine. The rollers for doing the same in a metal shop are heavier and made of iron. The crank is very long with a handle to turn the rollers. I basically make a metal sandwich, then adjust the rollers and then crank through the copper or sterling silver against the etched Magnesium plate. Now I have the design (in reverse) on the metal.

 

I don't like seeing my miniature pieces twice or 5 times the size they are in real life. :-)

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Moderator1

"I don't like seeing my miniature pieces twice or 5 times the size they are in real life. :-)". I understand what you mean however when they do look good blown up that is really impressive.

Why use magnesium ?..... I know printers used it for plates but I can't see it being very good for roll printing because it is so soft. The reason I use it for panto patterns is it is slippery and doesn't drag the stylist.

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Catherine Ronan
"I understand what you mean however when they do look good blown up that is really impressive." I would be much more impressed, if this software gave me some choices.

 

Any non-ferrous metal would do virtually the same thing, after going through the rolling mill a few times. As I am sure you know you can't run steel through a rolling mill because it will ruin the iron rollers.

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miraclechicken

So fascinating, I've always loved your tool chest with all the incredible tools, now I get go have some info about the procedures   :)

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MissyBoling

I will never tire of seeing your miniature tools, so bring them on!

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