Table update - pretty much gotten the vice mount done. Some cleaning up to do like closing in the ends with some caps. But funcitonally it done.
The receiver fabricated from 12mm mild steel and MIG welded outside joints.
Tacked up under the table ready to full weld up. After this it got a bit ugly. I spent quite a bit of time practicing and finding the correct settings for uphill welds. I got there ... sort of. Biggest issue was access to these with a mig gun was horrible. Couldn't see what the heck I was doing. The overhead weld ended up being cleaned up with multiple TIG passes.
The mounting frame for the vice tacked up and in place as a proof.
Vice mounted and ready to rock and roll. Of course if its in the way and I need to remove it then just unlock the bolts and pull the whole unit out.
Showing the locking bolts. The plan is to add some T handles to these so they can be snugged up by hand instead of needing a spanner.
Food for thought from one shop dreamer-builder to another: I saw a YouTube video of a shop tour (Sorry, It was about two years ago and I can't remember who it was.) of someone who had a long bench with two vices mounted, one on each end of the bench and lined up with each other for long parts. If I was copying your build, I might put two removable vices in to do the same.
Me: I have brackets and clamps to add holding for long pieces at the "free" end opposite the vise.
By the way, I have been following your projects and I have to comment that your skills have improved over time and that your designs have become more inventive as time has passed.
ShoeShop - interesting idea. Current experience has been that when I’m dealing with long stuff (ie as long or longer than table length I tend to be clamping things direct to the work surface. On this table that would mean a mix of F clamps or home made Fixture Clamps to hold things down.
My usage of a vice has tended to be in holding shorter work that needs to be filed, ground, free hand drilled, buffed etc.
I am intrigued with the dual vice idea and will have a snoop online to see if I can find some discussions on that use case.
Also, thanks for the encouragement re learning and getting a little “better”. I appreciate that. I am rather enjoying myself learning this stuff. It was particularly gratifying to have my neighbor let me loose with his commercial shop and forklift without feeling like he had to supervise me every minute.
Base frame built. I didn't get the welding sequence quite right as after welding up I have about 4mm warp in the frame between opposing corners.
Added in the straps that will stop the slats from falling through. I had a good think about how this would work and the tensions that would be created. I figured if I did this right and had the frame clamped down to the table I should be able to lock things in and get rid of the warp.
Net result is a table that is now dead flat, no warp!
Will post more progress as I make it. Only doing this after dinner in the evenings at the momement so not going to fast until the weekend.
I have found that tack welding both sides eliminates the heat distortion. It's tempting with a jig or table clamps to weld the entire facing surface which introduces heat warping that even the strongest clamps won't prevent. Tack welding, then flipping the piece over and checking for square corners before tack welding the opposite side works best for me.
Finalising the plasma extension as well as adding some handdles to the locking bolts.
Simple addition to the locking bolts. Handles from 10mm round. Cut to length then cleaned up the ends in the lathe. A quick blat with the MIG and done. Really easy to use and large enough to get good torque.
Started putting in the slats. Used 10mm rounds to hold the slats in place but to also allow them to be replaced. The box section is 35mm square. Cut the rounds 30mm long and the slats are 3mm thick by 40mm wide. So they protrude 5mm above the box frame. You can see the spaces I cut. They are 2.75 inch. That spacing with the 3mm thick flats worked out as the best mix without having way more slats that necesary.
All welded up. Next stop is attaching it to a receiver.
The bracket welded to the receiver and supporting the frame. Its made from 6mm steel so should be strong enough for this job.
All done and seems to be sitting nicely.
The current storage spot for it while not in use.
All in all a good little addition. I have used it already. I actually cut the bracket pictured above on the table while I had it clamped in place as part of a test fit-up.
I hate to be the one asking this question but what are your plans once your shop is fully set up? Will you start a welding repair business? Any plans for subcontracting small welding jobs as piece work? Your equipment may have excessive productivity for a home workshop.
As another project suggestion consider lining your shop ceiling and walls with barn tin. The place will be fireproof and easy to clean. When I insulated and lined my shop with tin it was cooler in summer and warmer in winter. That's just what you need for a production welding shop.
It’s very close now I think. The only thing I would really like to have is a small surface grinder. Problem is finding something that is in the small class. There seems to be more options on that front in the northern hemisphere than in NZ.
I have a couple of things I want to upgrade. Like the MIG welder for example. Just Cose I want more options/capability and I can afford it under the “sanity for life” clause I have with SWMBO.
Projects to do include internal combustion engine and larger steam engines (size capable of powering a small wooden boat. CNC the small Mill, portable CNC plasma cutter, eventually some powered model vehicles steam and/or petrol/diesel. But I have a lot of learning still to do before jumping into those.
I might do some small paid work for people wanting stuff done but that the local businesses are not interested in as it’s too small. We shall see how spare time and motivation effects that idea.
While my TIG machine is not a bad little unit one of its annoying limitations is how it treats a pedal. When a pedal is added on unless it is of the dual knob variety the pedal will always do 0 to Max (200) amps. What you really want is to be able to set the max Amps that can be dialed up with the pedal while having the pedal giving you increased resolution across the new amp range. I suspect this circuit does not do that in a linear manner but the simulation does seem to be delivering on the capped amps. Will keep looking into things.
Big call out to Bruce who fixed my previous and very flawed circuit attempt.
So I have implemented the test circuit and checked how it behaves. Looks like its working as expected. This is just a simple test setup. Next step will be to splice the control circuit into the control lead in a more permanent manner.
Finished the max-amps control box on the TIG pedal today and successfully used it this evening.
Finished "soap on a rope" control box. The switch essentially enables/disables the pedal by allowing me to stop the internal pedal switch from activating. So when in the "OFF" position I can push the pedal to max and adjust the peak amp setting that flooring the pedal will give without having the welding activate gas and the HF start. As you can see I managed to rip a bit of plastic out when drilling the switch mounting hole. One of those blistering four letter word moments. But a little superglue and its all sorted and perfectly serviceable. If it ever breaks completely I think I will replace it with the aluminium version.
And the overall look.
Ultimately a very simple mod and for anyone with a Wave 200KD machine well worth the effort. You could probably do the same thing on any machine that has the maxamp limitation.
Well done Joko-nz, I agree that a die cast aluminium box would be a good idea. Those plastic jiffy boxes are not really up to rugged workshop conditions as you have found. If just drilling a hole breaks a chunk out, imagine what a falling piece of steel, like a hammer would do, or even the effect of the box dropping onto the concrete floor.
Ropetangler - I’ll probably move to an Ali box at some point. But given this is 90% of the time hanging in space per pic it’s (fingers crossed) unlikely to get smashed between the floor and a heavy object. In the meantime I’m going to enjoy having the control I’ve seen others just assume exists.