Saturday, March 31, 2012

A Mini Sandblaster -- Princess Auto Cat. No. 8059966



Princess Auto had this item on for $12.99 -- I couldn't resist. I just have to install an air connector, and I can try it out.

My instincts tell me that I've wasted $12.99 on a toy, but if this works out I'll be happy as a clam. My sandblasting needs are not large; this may do what I need it to. Here's a view of what I'll be trying it out on.

It's an ornamental, cast iron bird bath bowl, about six inches in diameter. I've emptied and vacuumed the sawdust bin from under my table saw to use as a 'containment' area for working in. We'll see how it goes. (And by the way, I'm entirely new to this -- I know virtually nothing about sandblasting. I'll share what I learn as I go along.)

- - -

Here it is after about 2/3 of the tank's supply of abrasive.

It does work, after a fashion, but I've learned one lesson already; you can't fake a sandblast cabinet with an open box. The particles bounce and ricochet and fly about everywhere. I'll have to do this outside, and be resigned to losing the abrasive as I use it.

Anyway, the tool shows some limited promise of doing what I need it to. Tomorrow, I'll arrange to work outside and at least get this item paint-ready. To be continued.

- - -

FRIDAY, APRIL 6, 2012

It turned out that I didn't get back to it 'tomorrow'; I got back to it today.

Anyway, here's the bowl after nearly two tankfuls of abrasive.

The tool did do what little I needed it to. The edges and the underside I can get at easily with wire brush wheels. I'll likely be reserving use of the sandblaster strictly for those situations that defy wire wheel brushing.

The Tool's Behaviour

For what I paid for the thing, I really can't complain, but I can't say that I'm really impressed by it, either. The trigger can be difficult to pull at times, and abrasive delivery is inconsistent -- it stops at times until you shake the thing.

I partially disassembled the tool to get a look at its innards; there's not much to it.

Abrasive just leaks down from the tank by gravity, and falls into the airstream to be hurled out the nozzle. It doesn't look to me like the design employs any Venturi effect to coax the abrasive into the airstream -- it's strictly gravity fed. (I imagine that the air rushing by has some tendency to draw down particles, but I don't see that there's what I think of as a 'venturi'.) I guess the abrasive tends to pack in its feed orifice at times; that would explain the interruptions in delivery I experienced. (The small hole behind the abrasive delivery hole is for a fastening screw.)

Air Consumption

Air consumption is considerable -- the nozzle's inside diameter is 5.2 mm. What that tells us is that to a compressor, a sandblaster is just an open-ended pipe. The tool's consumption specs are:
  • 4 CFM @ 90 PSI average.
  • 15 CFM @ 90 PSI continuous.
They don't explain what's meant by 'average'.

My 11 U.S. gallon, 115V compressor claims to deliver 6.1 CFM @ 90 PSI, and it seemed to be able to supply the sandblaster adequately for my purpose. Permit me a brief digression here, concerning compressor specifications.

Air compressor manufacturers have a well-deserved reputation for playing fast and loose with specifications, especially with 'horsepower'. On the side of the motor on my Campbell-Hausfeld machine, there's a big decal that says "3.5 HP". That figure is all but meaningless; it's a 'peak air power' figure that's based on what the machine's full tank of compressed air can momentarily deliver. My compressor runs off a standard household 115V, 15 Amp circuit. On a good day with a favourable tail wind, such a circuit can deliver a continuous 2 HP. 3.5 HP can never be realized from a 15 Amp household circuit. There's an interesting article here that tells a good deal more about the subject.

Should you be shopping for an air compressor, choosing one is easy -- get the biggest machine you can afford and have space for. If I had the wherewithal, I'd have a compressor the size of a small vehicle.

Abrasives

Here's the abrasive I bought along with the sandblaster.

Here's what a little heap of the stuff on the workbench looks like.

It's a remarkably 'clean' material; using it doesn't result in clouds of noxious dust.

There's quite a variety of abrasives available; crushed glass appears to be the cheapest -- that 50 lb. bag in the photo was $9.99. Aluminum oxide is probably more effective, but it's almost five times the price.

The manufacturer, Opta Minerals Inc., has a fine website with lots of information. This page summarizes all the types of abrasive. As with everything, one could make a career of learning all there is to know.

Before I wrap this up, I should mention safety considerations. Take a look at the photograph of the bag of abrasive above. Note how the guy with a sandblaster is suited up. I can understand the outfit. The bounce-back you get of abrasive particles is wicked. Eye protection is essential; a full face shield would be better. Add leather work gloves, and a hat to keep the stuff out of your hair. I didn't feel like I needed a respirator for what I was doing, but it wouldn't hurt to use one. Depending on the abrasive being used, and the type of work being done, a respirator might be essential at times.

Anyway, there's my introduction to sandblasting. The $12.99 tool is useful as a 'spot' sandblaster. One can do some useful work with it. Don't expect more of it than it can deliver. For serious sandblasting, I'd want to acquire that vehicle-sized compressor I mentioned, and a fully-grown sandblaster to match.

- - -

Addendum -- FRIDAY, JULY 11, 2014

Be careful where and how you store an opened bag of abrasive. I made the mistake of leaving a bag open near my drill press, and that's an invitation to contaminants such as this.


That little curlycue of aluminum swarf found its way directly into the sandblaster's abrasive feed orifice, and clogged it. I had to take apart the tool to extract the curlycue.

Keep bags of abrasive closed, and away from where you do machining work.

- - -

Service Note: Valve Stuck Part Way Open -- SUNDAY, August 14, 2016

I had an incident today where the sandblaster's valve stuck part way open -- it would not close. I think I've found the cause.

To gain access to the valve, first remove the blue rear cover on the handle. It's held in place by two claws that are just visible inside two small, rectangular openings.


You'll encounter a hexagonal plug at the upper rear of the handle. Unscrew that with a 5/8" socket wrench. 'Careful -- there's a spring inside.

Now you can unscrew the valve from the trigger with a plain slot screwdriver.

With the trigger unfastened from the valve stem, you can extract the valve stem with its spring and two o-rings.


Note the larger o-ring. If that o-ring escapes from its groove, you'll get a valve that sticks part way open. Reseat the o-ring and reassemble the sandblaster. (Note: When reinstalling the plug, do not use a wrench; use only the socket itself and your fingers.)

Princess Auto doesn't appear to make the o-ring available as a service replacement part. They really ought to.






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Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Storm Door Broken Window Repair

It would be worth my life to tell how this happened.

Suffice to say that it happened, and needs to be dealt with.

This shabby old door is slated for replacement anyway, but that could be a ways off yet. For the time being, it will have to get an opaque 'window'. It's a good thing I have some salvaged sheet material on hand that I won't mind wasting on this.

That window is secured on the inside by four of these screw-fastened clamps.

A bit of paint digging in the screw recesses with a scribe tip and the window should come out easily.

As I expected, it pries out from the top. Only the bottom edge resides in a channel. The paint the door had gotten long ago made the window frame a little balky, but with a bit of persuasion it came out.

And here it is all done up, and with the outside pre-painted even.

'Looks good to me. I don't know what my wife's complaining about.

- - -

SATURDAY, MARCH 10, 2012

Addendum -- Dealing with the Broken Window

If nothing else, I need to dispose of all the glass shards safely. If I could get a pane of glass cut for it, I wouldn't mind repairing it and getting the door back to normal. When I was a boy, every hardware store had a rack of window glass and a machine for cutting it squarely and precisely, but that's gone the way of typewriters and sock darning. I must look into it.

Anyway, it looks like the window frame can be disassembled fairly easily -- there's one screw at each corner, like so.

If I do this carefully, I can get the pane's exact width x height dimensions.

- - -

Here's a view of how the frame is constructed.

It took a bit of persuasion to get it apart that far. I'm impressed with how deeply the glass is seated and sealed in its frame-channels. That's quite a nice bit of engineering. Each of those 'L' brackets is spot-welded to the ends of the upper and lower channels, then screw-fastened to the side channels. At reassembly, the side channels will have to go in place first, followed by the upper and lower channels.

Some further persuasion got the entire upper channel off, and from there it was easy to remove all the shards and the seal.

I got the dimensions -- 24 5/8" x 18 1/8" x 0.085" thick. I may as well make a proper job of this. I'll strip off that wretched paint and find where I can either get glass, or get the window professionally reglazed. To be continued.

- - -

SATURDAY, MARCH 17, 2012

Replacing the Glass

I found a glass place and got a piece of glass cut to size. It's a good idea to take a sample of what you need with you when you go for glass, so you have the answer to the thickness question[1] right in hand. On a window frame of this construction, glass thickness is critical -- too thick and it won't fit the gasket/channel arrangement.

Anyway, I've stripped the paint off the frame channels and scrubbed them clean along with the gasket. Before dismantling the frame, I marked the corners with an electric engraver so I could put it back together exactly as it was. That's a good precaution to take, even on things that appear to be made of interchangeable pieces; it can save you save some surprises. Here's the glass rectangle with the gasket installed.

Now I have to get the frame channels in place and fastened back together. Needless to say, this is a bit fraught with peril. I'll smear WD-40 in the channels so they go onto the gasket easily.

- - -

That went remarkably easily and well. The only flaw is that I was unable to get the ends of the gasket to meet, so there's a void at one corner, like so.

I have some grey silicone gasket maker that I can stuff in there to seal that and give it a better appearance.

Tomorrow, I can reinstall the window, and the cat can get back his afternoon sunny spot in the vestibule to lounge in.

- - -

The grey silicone (Permatex ULTRA GREY) worked out well. Here's a shot of the filled corner of the gasket from the exterior of the reinstalled window.

And the landlord has his sunny spot back.

All's right with the world again.

- - -

Note:

[1] I had miked the glass and found that it was 0.085" thick. I also took a sample of the glass with me to the somewhat 'boutiquey' glass outfit that I'd found in the Yellow Pages. (The showroom was something of a hall of mirrors -- lots of really expensive, arty-looking items.)

I handed the guy the dimensions I needed and told him the thickness was "eighty-five thou." He said, "I've got two mil and three mil." I was glad I had the sample with me.

When I hear "mil" used as an abbreviation for "millimetre", it sets my teeth on edge. It's a slovenly usage of "mil" that's just flat out wrong, and doesn't inspire confidence in the user's knowledgeability.

Anyway, the guy cut my piece of glass and for $15.00 I went home with it. (I was a bit surprised that he didn't have a cutting apparatus like the ones I remember from long-ago hardware stores. He did it with tape measure, framing square and hand-held cutting tool, like I would at home.)

My point in all this is simply to advise that empirical means of conveying information (e.g. a sample of something) can be very helpful for avoiding error and miscommunication. The glass guy no doubt knows his stuff in his way, but I suspect that "eighty-five thou" meant nothing to him. And his "two millimetre" thickness dimension was nominal; the glass was actually 2.2 mm thick (just shy of 0.087" -- a tiny bit thicker than my sample).

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

Lexicon -- 'Mil'

'Mil' ought not to be used as an abbreviation for 'millimetre'. The word 'mil' was long ago taken by inch measure to mean one one-thousandth of an inch (0.001").

The use of 'mil' is mostly confined to wire measure, as in 'circular mil'; i.e. a wire having a diameter of one mil (0.001") would represent one circular mil. Any wire diameter can be expressed as an equivalent bundle of circular mils. The unit is useful for establishing and expressing characteristics of electrical wiring material.

There really is no good abbreviation for 'millimetre' in speech. Just say 'millimetre' out in full when you mean to say 'millimetre', and no one will misinterpret. In writing, 'mm' is the universally accepted abbreviation for millimetre, never 'MM'.

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

A Closet Bi-Fold Door Installation

Our house has a spare bedroom with a doorless closet. A bi-fold door installation is in order.

Bi-fold doors aren't too difficult to do. Take your dimensions[4] to the Home Depot or wherever, and they'll order you up a custom-sized door ready to install. But there's one thing that must be squared away first off, and that's how the 'jamb bracket' (the pivot-point at the floor) is to be installed. Jamb bracket installation must be solid and flawless -- nothing less will do. The jamb bracket is the most crucial element of a bi-fold door installation.

I've installed a bi-fold closet door before with no trouble to speak of. In that installation, the 'threshold' was a ceramic tiled floor. The only complication to that was the need to drill a hole through the ceramic tile, and a proper glass/tile drill bit makes that remarkably easy to do. That job went pretty smoothly and turned out well.

The bedroom's floor is fully carpeted, and the door's 'threshold' is simply carpeting. That won't do for a jamb bracket installation -- there needs to be a solid wood threshold. I could just install a wood threshold over the carpet. That would work adequately, but it strikes me as an unsound practice at bottom.

So, the thing to do is to cut away a strip of carpet and attach a threshold directly to the sub-floor. I can see a way to do that such that the threshold will inherently conceal the cut edges of the carpet. Now I need to round up material and look more closely at what all will be involved. To be continued.

- - -

A Threshold Complication

And wouldn't you just know that a wrinkle would crop up to complicate things.

The door was framed by someone who knew enough to be dangerous. The casing at the right side is not as far out into the room as it is at the left side. The difference is at least half-an-inch. A full-width threshold will just accentuate that. No matter how I do a full-width threshold, it will end up looking odd. (And 'looking odd' is being charitable.)

I'll make the 'threshold' just a 3 1/2" square 'stub' at the left side where the jamb bracket must go. To be continued.

- - -

SUNDAY, MARCH 18, 2012

A Stub Threshold

I'm starting with a 3 1/2" square of 1" nominal softwood. I mean to have three of its upper edges rounded over 3/8" radius, and the same three of its lower edges rabbeted 3/8" x 3/8".

That's a simple enough proposition, but the order of operations needs to be thought through beforehand. Every machining operation has its requirements and limitations, and those need to be taken into account before beginning.

In this case, I have to do the rounding over prior to the rabbeting. Were I to do the rabbeting first, I'd be left with no reference edge for the pilot bearing of the router bit. After the rounding over, I can do the rabbeting on the table saw. The saw's rip fence will work fine with the rounded over edges as reference edges.

Here's a view of the rounding over just completed on the router table.

You can see what I was on about regarding the pilot bearing and its need for a reference edge. Next up is to to install the dado cutter in the table saw and do the rabbeting.

Anyway, it's getting late in the day here, and the union[1] doesn't like me working overtime, so I'll pack it in for now. To be continued.

- - -

SATURDAY, MARCH 24, 2012

The Rabetting Done

And here's the rabetting just completed on the table saw.

Referencing a rounded over edge to a rip fence presents no problem. Now I have to go cut the carpeting to accept this, and do a complete trial installation.

- - -

Trial Installation

Masking tape is a great layout aid for many things, even carpeting.

And here's the cutout done.

And here's the stub threshold set in place.

Now I'll add the screws, and I'll have my solid reference surface for the door opening's height dimension.

To get a guaranteed perfect result on an installation like this, I drill pilot hole diameter through the thing to be installed, then use that as a drilling template for the mounting screw pilot holes.

There's a bit of a wrinkle here, though; I want two of the screws to be quite close to the door casing -- too close to use a drill. For those two pilot holes, I'll drive finishing nails. Here's all the pilot hole work done.

I'll pull those two nails straight out with Vise-Grips so I don't mar anything. Then I can bore out and countersink the stub threshold's screw holes on the drill press, and I'll have a flawless installation.

- - -

And here's the trial installation fully completed.

Those countersinks need to be deepened a bit, but I've got my reference surface for door opening height. I'll make a simple, unambiguous sketch for my wife to take to the Home Depot, and nothing can possibly go wrong. [We'll see if I end up having to take that back.] While I'm waiting for the door to be made, I can prime and paint the stub threshold.

- - -

SATURDAY, APRIL 7, 2012
Update

The door's been ordered. My wife wasn't keen on doing it on her own, so I went with her.

One little snag did arise. We wanted the same, 'six panel' style of door that we'd gotten previously, but that style couldn't be made to our shorter-than-normal height dimension (73 3/8"). We had to go with a plain slab style of door to get our height dimension.

My sketch dimensions were in inches only, and the manufacturer's ordering software wanted feet and inches. I thought that a bit odd; it seems to me that just introduces another place for error to creep in.

Anyway, for a pre-tax price of $91.26, we'll get our door in a week or two.

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SUNDAY, APRIL 21, 2012

It's Arrived

The door comes shrink-wrapped, with its hardware attached in a cardboard container.


The factory makes the door 1/2" narrower than the opening's width, and 1 11/16" shorter than the opening's height to allow for the track and the pivot. I'll install it next weekend, circumstances permitting

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SUNDAY, APRIL 29, 2012

The Installation

Here's a view of what comes in the box of hardware.


At the top of the photo is the track with its adjustable pivot-point in place. (The lock screw has a 5/16" A/F hex head.) Then, viewing from left to right, we have:

a) The jamb bracket. That's the item that I needed the solid stub threshold for.

b) The bottom pivot. Its splined/tapered metal stud-end plugs into the notched slot in the jamb bracket. The shank of it is threaded 1/4"-20, so it also provides some height adjustability.

c) The top pivot. Its spring-loaded stud plugs into the steel pivot-point in the track.

d) The top guide roller for the lead end of the door.

e) The closure bumper spring. That goes in the end of the track for the roller to bump up against. The force provided by the spring acts on the geometry of the hinges to hold the door in its closed position.

f) A motley assortment of Phillips recess screws. I'll likely substitute square recess screws for some of those.

g) An unfinished wooden knob; it's quite finely made.

h) A closure alignment guide. That won't be needed for this installation. Were this to be a double door installation, that guide would go at the lead end of one of the doors to guide the lead end of the opposite door into place as it closes.

Items 'b)', 'c)' and 'd)' plug into holes already drilled in the door. They're a force fit -- installed with a mallet -- so you want to be absolutely certain that you have their place assignments visualized correctly before installing them. They'd be a devil of a thing to get out once installed. Sketchy installation instructions are printed on the bag the hardware was in.

Plumbing the Track and the Jamb Bracket

Ordinarily, you'd install the track first, then use a plumb bob[2] to locate the centre line of the jamb bracket. I have to reverse that order here because I want to ensure that the jamb bracket is centred on the stub threshold. An anti-gravity plumb bob would be nice to have, but as far as I know, no such thing exists.[3] I'll have to come up with an adjustable hanging point for my plumb bob's cord, and do it by trial and error.

And here we are with the plumb bob's cord correctly positioned on the head jamb; I've gotten the plumb bob centred over the stub threshold.


Here's how I suspended the plumb bob, so I could fiddle with the cord's location.




Now I just have to project that pencil mark I made the whole length of the head jamb, and I'll have the track's centre line established, plumb with the jamb bracket.

That's the critical part of the job done. What's left is spotting and drilling screw holes, and attaching the track and the jamb bracket.

And here's the jamb bracket solidly in place.


Once I attach the track, the installation will be all but complete. The door with its three hardware items installed can go into place and be adjusted.

With all that done, I'll dismantle everything so the door and the door casing can be painted. When I have the final, painted installation done, I'll return to this and point out a few details


- - -

A Couple Of Final Details -- SATURDAY, JANUARY 26, 2013

The door's been painted, and final installation has been done. It works fine, and the spare bedroom finally looks completed.

The turned hardwood knob supplied with the door is smooth enough that it takes a spray paint job very nicely. Here it is in place on the door.


The factory doesn't pre-drill a hole for the knob's fastening screw -- they leave it for the installer to choose where he wants the knob located.

- - -

Because the factory supplies a door and track that are 1/2" narrower than the specified opening, the closure bumper spring ends up having a little more rightward travel than it needs to have. That reduces the spring's effective tension a bit. To improve on that, I made and installed a little wooden shim rectangle to take up the lost space. Here's a view of that.


Here's a neat method for setting up a table saw to rip odd thicknesses of shim stock. It's the method I used to obtain that little rectangle pictured. The shim is held in place with double-sided tape.

Anyway, there's the whole story of my bi-fold door installation; it really wasn't a difficult job. About the only thing that would make such an installation problematic would be a very poorly constructed, out-of-plumb/level door frame. Installing a perfectly rectangular door in such a frame would really reveal the flaws, and might end up looking awful. The only solution would be to start from scratch by reconstructing the door frame first

- - -

Notes:

[1] The IBBW (International Brotherhood of Basement Workshoppers). And they're not some lame 'company union'; they're a right proper union with muscle. One doesn't flout their rules.

[2] There is surely no more elegant tool in the known universe than the plumb bob. Consider -- the tool tells perfect verticality from one point to another by way of a fundamental force of nature acting on a length of cord and an exquisite bit of machined metal. Batteries not included. No microprocessor is involved. It's unpatentable -- there's no 'owning' the principle of it; one could fabricate a passable version of a plumb bob from damn near anything.

I nominate the plumb bob as the crowning achievement of humanity's toolmakers.

[3] I stand corrected. It dawned on me that a laser pointer could be adapted to function as an 'anti-gravity plumb bob', and sure enough, such things can be had, but they're not cheap.

[4] A word of caution is in order. Your door's opening may appear to be a rectangle, but depending on how carefully it was constructed, it may actually be a trapezoid, or even an irregular quadrilateral (i.e. a four-sided figure with no parallel sides). Check the levelness of the floor and the head jamb, and the plumb of the side jambs to get a 'picture' of how flawed/perfect your door's opening really is. Bear in mind that installing a perfectly rectangular bi-fold door will dramatically reveal every flaw in levelness and plumb of the surrounding door casing.

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Sunday, March 4, 2012

Deleting a Peerless Pop-Up Basin Plug

Pop-up wash basin plugs are something that no one in our household ever uses. In the rare event that anyone did need to fill a basin, the logistics of keeping a discrete plug handy are not too difficult to handle. So, pop-up plugs to me are just a needless complication in the event of a clogged drain. I've already done away with the one that was in the basement bathroom. Now, I have a clogged drain in the main floor bathroom's wash basin, and the pop-up is in the way of clearing the clog. Not only that, but the plug's mechanism is seized from disuse in the open position -- it's quite inoperable. I'm going to delete it altogether. Here's a view of the mechanism underneath the basin.

It's all-plastic, made by Peerless. It looks like it's just a snap-fit on the pipe, and can be pried off.

- - -

Except for getting the rod loosened off, that was easy. The rod is clamped in place by a big plastic nut that's hidden from view behind the basin. I had to get Channellocks on the nut by feel to loosen it. Here's a view of the plug's works all removed.

Needless to say, the plug didn't emerge from the drain looking like that. I scrubbed it for the photo; there are limits to how much reality needs to be presented here.

I really can't fault the design of it. It's well-thought-out and well constructed, but as I said earlier, we never use it, and the lift rod had seized in the faucet body from disuse.

That semicircular piece that clips onto the pipe is called the 'yoke'. I'll reinstall that with only the ball portion of the pivot rod to seal the opening in the pipe, and there's an end to pop-up plug aggravation. Here's what I'll be clipping back onto the pipe, along with some silicone gasket maker for a 'sure-thing' sealant.

That went nicely. That clip-on yoke is a fine piece of engineering, whether for its intended function or as merely a hole-plug holder.

By the way, there's a way to install these plugs so the plug is easily removable. You clip the closed end off the plug's shank, like so.

With that little alteration made, the plug just perches on its pivot rod and can be taken out at any time. The only downside is that the lift rod can't pull the plug firmly closed, you'd have to push down on the plug after letting it drop to seat it firmly. In any event, at this address, I'm just as happy to be rid of the thing entirely.

A further 'by the way' is that a bicycle spoke makes a pretty good tool for fishing hairy clogs out of drains. Whenever possible, fishing out a clog is preferable to dumping chemical muck down the drain.

Two spokes can be coupled together with a spoke nut to make a longer tool.

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Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Motor Find

Some years ago, I had dropped by the city's household hazardous waste depot on my way home from work to offload some old paint and motor oil. I spotted this motor lying on the pavement just outside the big roll-up door to the place.

No one's name was on it aside from the manufacturer's (Franklin), so I put it on the truck and went home with it.

It's 3/4 hp, 3,450 rpm and it runs perfectly. It's just what I need to power an old table saw I want to restore. The only snag is that it has no mount. It's what's known as a 'C-Face' motor -- its output end is a precision flange with four threaded holes in it for bolting the motor directly onto a gearbox, or whatever machine the motor is to be the input to.

So, I'll have to come up with a mount for it that will let me mount it in conventional fashion behind a saw. That's going to be a bit of a challenge. When that's done, I'll tear the motor down and give it a paint job. This may take a while.

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SUNDAY, MARCH 4, 2012

Mount -- C-Face Upright Beginnings

This motor's frame is a NEMA 56 configuration, so I was able to confirm my layout measurements from NEMA data. The ticklish part of this piece of the mount is cutting a 4 1/2" diameter hole in a board to accept the face of the motor. I have a fly-cutter that can do that. Setting the thing up can be a bit of a chore. Here it is ready to go.

I know of no way to accurately preset a fly-cutter for a given absolute dimension. You have to do it by trial and error on scrap material. Down in front you can see where I was doing just that on a piece of trash material.

I got a shot of the cutter in action, just for the heck of it.

And here's the cutter with its prize at the end of the cut.

Note the c-clamps. You don't even think about using a fly-cutter this size on hand-held material. To be safe and successful, a fly-cutting job must be securely clamped up. Use only the drill press' lowest speed and a sharp cutter. Everything must be tight. Slow, easy even feed gets the job done with no untoward events.

Once I got that piece of work free of the drill press table, I drilled the four bolt holes that I'd already laid out and spotted before starting on the big hole. Here it is trial-fitted to the face of the motor.

It's a start. There's much more to be done, but so far, so good.

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