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  1. Roger is right about aluminum, if you want to use that you have to machine the U, which means removing a fair amount of metal, although with aluminum it goes quickly. I made some very small ones once that got lost in a move and haven't had call to remake them yet, but I did machine the U on the mill into a bar, and then used a slitting saw to split them off into four clamps. If you just have a lathe, you can put the end mill in the chuck and clamp the bar to the cross slide and machine the U that way. But I think Mike's solution is probably best combo of cost + difficulty of making the clamps.
  2. T5 or T6 (hardness) 2024 (alloy) aluminum should work fine in a small clamp, as does brass as Mike has shown. My only suggestion with Mike's clamps is to cross-drill the knurled knob so you can slide a 3/16 steel rod through for extra torque when needed.
  3. Keyway Key stock as I recall is not tool steel but it has been hardened, and it's not a good idea to try to machine hardened steel. If nothing else the tools required are quite expensive.
  4. Since Roger beat me to the punch, and while we're at it, if you're looking for ground stock (or anything else having to do with machining), you can get it at Victor Machinery Exchange. I've been buying from them for 10 years or so.
  5. Another good one is Online Metals, I order from them sometimes.
  6. I've yet to try it, but will at some point- most jewelers use thermoplastic for clamping operations when soldering. Heat the plastic with a torch, embed your pieces into it, let it cool, then solder, as long as you don't use excessive heat the plastic is supposed to hold fine.
  7. vossiewulf

    Model Shipways Constitution

    That pretty much describes me, Larry. I recommend you start with something similar to what I did, a cutter model or a longboat, or something else with a single mast. There is a tremendous amount to learn just building something like that before you step up to the plate for the Constitution. I have that kit in my closet but it will stay there for a while yet before I feel like I'm ready to do it justice.
  8. I'm not sure what else you expect them to be doing, at least on small ships. Here is the anchor windlass I made for my LN, after studying contemporary models. Its size and positioning and method of function can be seen on contemporary cutters. And by ratchet mechanism, I mean a mechanism which can selectively be set to turn only one direction - a pawl is part of a ratchet mechanism. As the barrel turned, the pawl dropped into each tooth and they could stop at any position without losing control of the anchor. With a small crew and small space (you can see they can at most do 90 degree cranks on the windlass) with heavy anchors, they did the best they could, with hands on each bar, turning as far as they could manage in the space.
  9. Windlasses had ratchet mechanisms of some kind, there wasn't any need to move the bars quickly- haul, let the ratchet take the load, remove bar, insert in next hole, repeat.
  10. There is nothing special about the Kunz plane, the steps you take to make it operate well are the same for all planes of all sizes: 1) Bottom of plane is dead flat, 2) bed for the iron is dead flat, 3) back of the plane iron dead flat. The biggest problem with the Kunz is the large, fixed throat opening, this is optimally much smaller but the only way you could really fix it is by welding or silver soldering a piece of cast iron/steel/brass into the throat, and then filing it to the narrow opening that you want. Any of these books will help with setting up any plane you purchase.
  11. vossiewulf

    Hola desde Toledo spain

    Hola Isidro, bienvenido a MSW! Google Translate se está volviendo bastante bueno en estos días, su mensaje fue comprendido fácilmente. Muchos constructores que no hablan inglés lo usan para sus registros de compilación todo el tiempo. Teniendo en cuenta que aproximadamente 4/5 de todos los libros en inglés de Age of Sail podrían ser retitulados. Sin embargo, otro libro sobre la Royal Navy, me complace ver que traiga más libros de historia naval en español al mundo de habla inglesa. Me gusta el RN muy bien, pero es más interesante un libro sobre un tema sobre el que sé poco (diseño del barco español).
  12. vossiewulf

    Surgical Scalpel Blades

    Mark should know what I would say about blades and knives That (un)said, if disposables are a must, then scalpels are generally somewhat sharper and better steel than X-acto blades. However with the shallower taper angle and back bevel on the point, I've also found them more likely to twist in my hand when bearing down with force. I switched back to X-acto after a while because of that, but everyone holds a knife differently so your mileage may vary.
  13. I lost my dear friend Takita this past year, who spent most of the previous 16 years attached to me in some way and disapproving of me whenever I left for any reason. Still can't really talk about it. I'm sorry to hear of your loss, Keith, I know how it feels.
  14. Can you not drill the hole down the center? Because you're right, it looks a whole lot easier to make an 8-sided replacement from a piece of maple or boxwood. If you can't drill a hole that deep, you could make the 8 sided piece and then cut it in half and drill a hole down each piece, then reassemble. Since your pieces came from the same stock, that fit should be fine. My pumps:

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