New machine tools

Oh, the excitement. I’ve ordered a couple of new machines!

A scrollsaw, for one of my ideas, which should be very handy generally, as it allows very precise and fine cutting, with a minimum of kerf and no risk to the fingers – you can touch the moving blade without issue, which is the absolute opposite of the 3 phase bandsaws, disc cutters and chopsaws I am more used to!

Kerf is the term for the material lost when cutting. With a 1mm thick cutting disc, you will lose at least 1mm off a piece of stock. Cutting a 100mm bar in perfectly in half would leave you with two 49.5mm bars, with that 1mm missing. On a 2.5mm or 3mm disc, it can soon add up, or on small parts can make it impossible. With a scrollsaw blades that are as thin as a hair are available, and so, combined with the close control allowed, kerf can be reduced to near zero, and complex cuts and work can be done.

The other tool is a small belt sander, which can be used for fairly fine and also fairly fast material removal. It’s a good bit of kit, though it won’t be in to the supplier until May! That will also help with a couple of ideas I have on the list that forever grows!

The real joy of this is that the belt is partly free, so I will be able to cut on the edge of the belt. Generally a bad idea, it will be useful for a couple of small tasks that currently take a very long time, as well as silly but vital things like re-grinding cuttters and chisels accurately.

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