The Sherline Miniature Machinist's Newsletter
Sherline Workshop Project of the Month
Miniature Classic Woodworking Tools/John Maki
The first photo shows a selection of the tools made by John Maki arrayed in front of a full-size plane. The second photo shows a miniature bow saw on a $2 bill for size reference.
A few weeks ago John Maki and his wife came by to tour both Sherline and the Craftsmanship Museum. He left us a CD containing photos of some of his work. We will soon be adding more detailed photos of these fine pieces to the Workshop section on the Sherline web site, but for now here is a preview. You can also see and learn more about his work at his own site at http://minitool.blogspot.com/.
John usually starts with a full-size vintage tool purchased on eBay or at a show that he uses as a model. From that he does detailed CAD drawings of each piece. The fit and function of each piece can also be observed so it can be duplicated in miniature. Some of the parts are then milled using CNC, and some are made manually using hand tools plus a manual Sherline lathe and mill. Because Johnís main concern is the collection of miniature tools, the full-size tool is often re-sold on eBay or elsewhere once it has served its purpose, but he has saved a few of his favorites so that they can be displayed with the miniature for comparison. He makes many of the tools in small runs of 30 or so which are offered for sale on his site.
An engraverís ball is seen full size and in miniature. The second photo shows a selection of miniature planes and a handsome display box.
John uses an assortment of fine hardwoods, ivory, steel and brass in his miniature creations. They are complete down to the miniature engraved numbers and makerís marks or logos. He has done all sorts of tools including planes, saws, measuring tools and engraving tools. While many collectors spend their time searching for pieces that others have made, John prefers to create his own slice of tool history in miniature by making each piece in his collection himself while also making them available to a select few collectors.
Shop Tip of the month
Accordion way covers for your Sherline CNC mill/iXen-CNC.com
The first photo shows the completed way cover on top of the set of plans along with the patterns for the end plate. The second photo shows the cover installed on the Y-axis.
Sherline mills do not have a tendency to get chips on the Z or X-axis leadscrew, because the design of the mill keeps them shielded. However, the Y-axis leadscrew and ways are exposed to chips, and many users have offered solutions to keeping this leadscrew clean during milling operations. The simplest way it to just place a piece of shirtback cardboard or plastic over the leadscrew area while working and dump the chips off periodically. The solution shown here, however, looks much more professional. The web site http://www.ixen-cnc.com/ features plans for making this simple folded paper cover as well as the metal end pieces to attach it to the saddle and base.
A Plexiglas enclosure keeps chips contained. Plans for this attractive enclosure can also be found on the iXen-CNC.com web site.
All About End Mill Holders
An end mill holder and one in use cutting a chamfer with a 3/8" shank end mill.
End mill holders or collets are how end mills are held in a milling machine. The end mill holder offers several advantages over using collets. First, the end mill holder allows you to use either single-ended or double-ended end mills, while collets work best only with single-ended end mills. Secondly, once the tool is secured in the holder by tightening the set screw against the flat in the end mill, the tool length doesnít change as long as the cutter is not removed from the holder. This comes in handy in CNC use, where the tool length is measured and set into the tools table in your program. Each time that tool is returned to the machine for an operation, the tool length is the same as it was before, meaning the table need not be updated. Each tool holder can be numbered, and because they simply thread onto the Sherline spindle, changing tools can be done quickly when a tool change is called for in the program. Having several end mill holders pre-set with different tools is, in effect, an inexpensive quick-change tool holder set for your mill.
Sherline end mills are turned from steel in a single CNC operation, and the threads are single-pointed while the part is still on-center, assuring the perfect alignment between the external spindle thread and the center hole of the end mill holder. If threads are tapped, or if the shoulder of the end mill holder is not perfectly flat, seating accuracy cannot be assured. Shortcutting some of these processes is how some other manufacturers make less expensive end mill holders, but Sherline felt cutter centering accuracy was too important to make any compromises in the process.
Sizes Available ($30.00 ea.):
1/4" óP/N 6079
10.0 mmóP/N 3078
8.0 mmóP/N 3077
6.0 mmóP/N 3076
Did you know?
ï A CNC Sherline cam grinder designed by Joe Martin is now featured on a YouTube video at (Part 1) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIWyGtXEgR4 and (Part 2) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PlZDg0rpIi8. Joe is shown grinding the cam for the Howell V-4 engine. The video runs about 17 minutes, so it had to be split into two parts to fit YouTubeís 10-minute length requirement. The video has been receiving a lot of hits.
ï Searching Sherlineís web site is easy. If you donít find a direct link to the section you are looking for on the black navigation bar at the top of the home page, you can scroll down to the Google Search Feature bar. Type in the part number or name you are looking for and hit ìSearch.î Googleís search engine will search just the Sherline site for your topic.
ï Sherline started importing tools from
ï The Cabin Fever Expo in
ï The North American Model Engineering Society (NAMES) will host its next
major exposition in
Joe Martin Craftsmanship Foundation News
ï Three people were added to the on-line museum this past month. They are:
11/24óSunia ReznikóWooden model vehicles in a wide variety
12/2óLee RootóEveryoneís favorite engine builder (Youíll love his Corvette!)
12/22óJim HastingsóClassic plank-on-frame wooden ship models
ï A Solar #4 engine
with parabolic reflector was donated to the
ï Both web traffic and visitors to the museum in
ï Our new Saturday hours are now in effect. We will be open on any non-holiday Saturday by appointment only. Any group of 8 or more that wishes to visit on Saturday should contact the museum at least one week in advance, and we will make arrangements to open up and host a personal tour for your group.