Luggage rack screw


Somehow the button which connects the luggage rack to the bike frame has come off, I couldn’t find a replacement, so I made a new one.

I turned a bar of steel, which is fairly free cutting and has a high shine to 5 mm, I also turned the outside diameter to match the one on the other side.


I then drilled and tapped a steel bar to act as an arbour, then turned it to the right length, and filed the right form in.


I then polished the part using a polishing wheel



Here it is, next to the original part from the other side.


And here it is in situ.



Mill pulley repair

A while ago, I used the soft blow hammer to remove  a collet chuck from the spindle, I missed and damaged the step V Belt pulley.










As you can see there is a substantial break in the top pulley.










The Pulley was turned to 30mm and a depth of 3.5 mm.











I turned a bit of scrap aluminium to 29.9 mm and parted it off at a thickness of 5mm.










After pressing the new part onto the pulley, I faced it then turned a matching taper.










Its quite a good blend don’t you think.










Back in situ on the mill.

Bed repair.

I managed to break the bed last night.

The two legs that support the central support bar which runs down the length of the middle of the bed broke.

Each leg was a hollow tube, with the 6mm insert which was tapped M6. On one of the supports, this insert had come out entirely. On the second it twisted in the tube. img_5686

I decided that I would cut the tubes and insert a 3-4 ish cm shouldered steel bush.

Bed repair




Mill vice work stop.

I’ve been browsing various websites for a while now looking for things to buy. I stumbled across a mill vice stop but wasn’t willing to pay for it.
I looked at a few designs online and decided on my plan.
I chose some stock from the shelf some 30×16 bar stock mild steel. I then cut a bit off on the bandsaw and cleaned one edge.

Milling one side

Milling one side

I then reamed three 6mm holes into the part holding the middle one short which was drilled for an M6 nut. I then milled a groove into the underside of the part.

Reamed holes 6mm

Reamed holes 6mm

Groove milled

Groove milled










Ignore the messy bench.
Once that was done, I sawed the part in half along the length of the groove then cleaned up the faces.
I pressed some pins into the outermost holes and tapped the central hole M6.
I then turned a thumbscrew on the lathe (sorry no pic of that happening).

Here is the assembled part. Once I was happy with the fit, I heated it to a bright red and dropped it into a can of old diesel engine oil. Word to the wise. Be careful doing this in a well ventilated area as oil burns when introduced to hot metal… Well hot anything tbh. Luckily it was only singed hair.







Bottle stopper

Here is a basic project for the lathe, a nicely turned bottle stopper.

I wanted it to have these features:
1, 90mm length
2, Three ‘o’ rings
3, A matching nub at the end, minus the o rings
4, A good surface finish

There are several techniques required.
Turning a taper via the compound rest method, parting, drilling, tapping, grooving.

On to the project!

Firstly I put a bit of one inch diameter aluminium in the chuck then centre drilled it, I then drilled it 4mm and tapped it M5. I drilled it 4mm however the correct tapping drill size is 4.2mm but my 4.2 mm drill was hiding somewhere.

Drilling 4mm

Drilling 4mm

Tapping M5

Tapping M5

After that was done I put a live centre in and turned the outside diameter to 24.5mm


Once I’d done that, I cut a groove into the “thin” end. I did this so that I wouldn’t have to worry about having to really keep an eye on where the tool was. I then marked a line approx 10mm from the “thick” end to show where I would end the taper.

cutting a groove

cutting a groove

marked line

marked line

I then set the compound rest using my protractor set to 4 degrees.

Setting the angle

Setting the angle

I was ready to start cutting the taper. I did the first few passes by hand, and once i was happy I used my cordless drill (set on low-speed) with a 5mm hex bit in the compound rest hand wheel.

first few cuts

first few cuts

I finished the taper by keeping the saddle in the same place, using the compound slide to cut the length of the taper, and cross slide for the in feed.

Finished taper.

Finished taper.

I then parted it off at the thin end making sure that i had taken the revolving centre off.

I flipped the part in the chuck and grooved the part for the o rings.

Groovy man

Groovy man

That was the main part done.

Next came the nub.

I drilled and tapped two half-inch aluminium rods M5, then screwed them together and put them in the chuck.
I parted off the excess then I turned the outside using a slow feed, then started to cut the taper.

screwing the rod on

screwing the rod on

first cut

first cut



I then screwed it in to the hole in the main body to finish it.



a sadly empty bottle.

a sadly empty bottle.

Slitting saw arbor

I’ve been meaning to make a new slitting saw arbor, I do own one already but it is a universal one which isn’t very accurate. Here is my attempt.


I started with some mild steel and then drilled and tapped it M12.

Once I had done this I put some 12.7MM steel in the chuck and threaded it M12.
I then screwed on the other part and turned it down to 26MM then I parted off about 8MM off the end which will act as the locking ring. I then made a shoulder so that the saw blade would be a tight fit. My blade is 3MM thick so I made the shoulder 2.5MM deep.

Once that was done I just had to fit the blade.

This was a very quick and easy project. It also works really well.


I’ve been working on this on and off for three years. I’ve got the engine finished and a base made I just need one more thing to get it fully completed. I’m sorry that there is no pics of the build. Because it has been a scattered effort I’ve not been taking pics etc. More to follow soon.
Also have a look on my YouTube channel where I have several other videos.

A form tool

I was asked to make some candle holders and to make it easier to get the inside dimensions the same I decided to make a form tool.

I started with a huge chunk of mystery steel which had been given to me a while back. Tool steel would have maybe been a better choice but I didn’t have any.
I placed the steel in the chuck and it needed truing up so I centred it to support it fully then started to true it.


The smoke is coming off the chips.

So I got the metal nicely turned then set to work in making the tool. I got the basic outline of the part turned slightly oversized then finished it to size.


I made grooves in the parts to provide space for the wood “swarf”to go


Once this was done I parted the part (with difficulty) then flipped it in the chuck and drilled and tapped the rear face to take an M8x1.25 cap screw to act as the shank.

I took the part to the dividing head on the mill to cut the cutting faces.

I did this for the smaller bore then ground them sharp.
I then cut the larger bore at a different angle to get better relief.
I then ground them sharp.


Here is a picture of three identical candle holders.


Range of autofeeds possible

Whilst I was making my thumbscrews yesterday I discovered that by configuring the gears on the lathe as normal but changing one gear it was possible to have a variety of feeds, thus speeding up lathe work.
Below is a table of the available feeds.

Table of feeds possible by replacing the “C” gear on the lathe
Size of gear (teeth) Feed given per revolution, to 3DP Gear ratio (spindle rotations:”D” gear rotations)
60* 0.281 5.333:1
50 0.234 6.4:1
45 0.211 7.111:1
40 0.188 8:1
35 0.164 9.143:1
30 0.141 10.6:1
20 0.094 16:1
* This gear wont fit, it interferes with part of the gear assembly.

Below is a picture showing which gear the “c” gear is.


As there was no mention of this in the handbook I guess it isn’t recommended. Use this information at your own risk.