Matthew Gregory

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About Matthew Gregory

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  1. Hey Brian, did you manage to get in touch with the guys at Apple Rubber?
  2. Hi Brian - I finally responded to your PM. Sorry it took so long! From what I've been told, you should separate the anvil from the body of the hammer any time you move it - the mass and weight is apparently responsible for breaking the castings of the body on all too many occasions. HOLY COW does it look great all primer-ed up! What did you use to remove the helve husk assembly? That's one of the sticking points I've got although I'm going to guess you've got access to all sorts of heavy equipment at the museum...
  3. Finally got my xxx out to fiddle with this thing again. Many of the problems I'm facing with it are beyond my skill level, so I decided (only after exhausting myself after five hours of wrestling with it) that it's time to call in a heavy gun. He's agreed to stop by and assess the situation in the near future, so hopefully some REAL progress will be made!!!! Nonetheless, I removed the helve height adjusting bolts, cleaned 'em up and re-assembled them. Using the jamb nut as a 'knob', you can raise or lower the entire helve assembly with the twist of a wrist!!!!! I can only guess at it's actual weight, but I certainly think no less than 400 pounds. All of the bolts run in their threads nice and smooth. Awesome. Anyway, after finding that I wasn't getting any further, I cleaned up and grabbed the camera and took a couple glamor photos - here's my favorite:
  4. Last year was a seriously suck year for me, so this project got back-burnered in a bad way. Hopefully things will be different this coming year - I feel bad that things just got left hanging, but I guess that's just how it rolls some times! Someone on another forum mentioned that they didn't know what the heck I was working on, as all my shots don't really show what it's supposed to look like:
  5. Finally, something to update!! Cool story first... The guy I buy my firewood from decided to retire this year. He stopped by the house early this summer to tell me, and also to refer a friend of his as a new source. "You'll get along swell - he collects antique tractors and stuff". So the long, hot summer goes by, with nary a thought passing through my brain regarding firewood. Sure as you're born, the mercury finally starts to drop and I manage to crawl out from under my rock and commence prepping my wood shelter for the next batch. I remember to call the new guy, and Joe (the new guy) says that five cords won't be an issue. "It's all cherry, though..." (you can just sense my heartbreak after hearing this) "...and it's cut a bit oversize. I have a big fireplace. Is this okay?" (you've gotta be kidding me - is this guy for real?) Cut to his delivery. Overlooking that the wood is nothing short of superb (really - almost a shame it ended up as firewood rather than a piece of furniture. THAT good!). I remember to ask him about his old tractors, and that leads to his obsession with all sorts of old machinery. Lathes, mills, drills - you name it. Of course, I have to show him my own monstrosity, and I mention to him that I'm in a bit of a quandary. After examining the machine, he asks to see the sheared bolt. "How soon do you need it?" says Joe. Here it is, just a few days later. How's it look? Now to finally start to disassemble the helve husk, clean everything up, and remove the broken stub for the pivot!!!!!
  6. Hey Phil! Aside from being out of money, and yet too busy at work, everything is fine! This project has kind of been back-burnered until I can amass a bit more dough to buy the stuff I need fixed, and I've still got plans to build a legitimate building for my forge area, as the tarp I used to shelter me got obliterated this winter. Heck, I don't even have my forge running, as there's no where to put it!!!! Pretty sad, really... I can't remember ever saying this was going to be a six week project, and I guess it's a good thing I didn't, eh?
  7. It's funny, Phil... I had posted earlier on a different forum that I needed to find a way to make a cradle or something to pull the entire helve assembly out - it'll make extracting the sheared bolt easier, too. Your words are the one I was hearing in my head, even before you said them! How much do you reckon that assembly weighs? I'm guessing around 400 pounds or so...
  8. Well, I got a bit of time to work on the ol' girl today. I power washed it to get the crud off, loosened the helve husk to see if I could work it free so when I have a helve I can spread it open... then had it slip off the pivot on the left side! Thought for sure the entire upper half of the hammer was coming down. I managed to jury rig a platform and got my floor jack under it, propped it back into place, and tried to tighten it in place with the fulcrum pivot screw. The bolt moved freely, but I can see the threads next to the husk, and they ain't budging. Removed the bolt to find that it's sheared, with the pivot point of it in place. Now I gotta find a bolt, and find a way to get the sheared end out. I'm guessing I'll to have to build a chainfall cradle in order to keep the upper assembly from collapsing. Oh well, she's over 100 years old. I guess this stuff is bound to happen! Phil, you got any more of these old bolts laying around? ;)
  9. Once again Phil has come to the rescue!! Here's a shot of the nuts and tensioning bolt I received from Mr. Cox - perfect!! ...now if it'll just warm up for a while and let me get to the darn contraption I can get fiddling with it again. It hasn't risen above the high twenties here yet in weeks - cold even for us this time of year.
  10. Hey Phil! I need one! I'm missing the bolt as well as the nuts on both ends... that's why I was going to pay a machine shop to make me a complete set. In fact, I was going to have all four made new so that the wrench required would match. If you have a bolt and 2 nuts, I'd be thrilled to buy them from you!!
  11. I've been thinking abut this project all winter, and have even started feeling around for someone to make me these: I'm missing one of the helve husk screws, and need to get a machinist to make me one. Thought about have 4 made, that way they could all be the same and I could change the nut size to a more common size (preferably one I already own!). My forge area was nothing more than a tarp covered spot next to the garage, and a massive snowfall early this winter decided it needed to eat my forge and stuff, so I can't even go out and bang on stuff! No biggie, it'll force me to make a commitment to a REAL forging station, complete with a pad for this pig!
  12. No chance of my enthusiasm waning, Phil - just got a bit thick and nippy here! We're expecting another 6 inches tonight, and it's been a balmy 15 or 20 degrees for a while now. Spring will commence this project once again, although I hope to have a chance to get the helve started before then. Time has been in short supply of late...
  13. WOOHOO!!!! Look what I got: My friend finally got the chance to turn the cushions to the taper I needed, and here's a picture of one! He made 5 of them for me (one spare), and now I've really got to get moving on the helve - man, I wish it wasn't so busy at work! The notches are due to the fact that they had an existing mould that they used for this project, and I can't imagine it affecting the performance of the hammer. If these work out for this project, I'll find out if they'd be willing to manufacture these for other folks. MANY MANY thanks to Joe Divissich and the crew at Apple Rubber products - this project would likely have been permanently hung up if it wasn't for these guys!