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When I was sitting in my motel room in Boulder Co. last week, I had an idea for a candleabra, my wife has been asking for one, so I started puttering, and I came up with this, The only problem I see is the curved flat bar that I will have to punch oblong holes into, also I think I will likely dress up the ends of the flat portions, question-- do you guys do this? just scribble something and go for it, or are you much more technical, and measure everything out?

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That candleabra should look pretty neat when its done.
If its just a project for my self or a gift i just start with a general idea and let all the details develop them self while I am forging.

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Looks like it has potential, perhaps a mixed media project so you can develop interesting light effects.

Dad was a machinist so I can be really anal about accurately measuring things only to find out it frequently doesn't matter that much.

I've been considering to engraving Starret on one of my hammers. Maybe it'll help.

Frosty

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I just winged it, got the top and bottom plates done, the rods have been tennoned and the flat bar curved, then I realized it may have been smarter to punch the holes first doh!! at that point my back was screamin at me, so I decided to call it a day. But I did make a fishtail roll on the ends of the plates, and got the candle cups almost finished, so about 2 more hours of fiddlin, then a couple hours of wire brushing etc.. the wife aughta be pretty happy. Pics will post when assembled.

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Frosty,
just wonderin, is your shop organized and clean (sic)?


I suppose that depends on your definition. I can see the floor some places, can even walk around reasonably well. I haven't had it up long enough to really get it dirty but it's getting a mite smudged. I'm currently trying to regain my sanity.

Organized? Is that like turned into a liver or spleen or something? :rolleyes:

Frosty
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For most commissioned projects I will draw the design. The smaller simpler ones I will just eyeball with my past experience as the guide. For larger projects i sit down and figure the lengths and order of assembly. If I am working on an idea for myself I'll often just make it up as I go and by doing that I sometimes stumble onto wonderful new ideas and techniques.

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Alwin

That method of working things out as you go si what I call thinking with your hands.:rolleyes: I find that it works quite well for me as the idea formed in my mind takes shape in the real world and I can make adjustments as I go. You are also correct in that a new idea or method of doing it comes to realization as you work. The only thing I make sure to do is make notes and maybe a sketch of what I' done for future reference. Sometimes the mind just gets too cluttered up and things get forgotten.:o

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  • 1 month later...

Hey Mike,
I can't wait to see the finished piece. Nice design. I am by no means new to metalwork, however I am pretty new to forging. The idea of passing one element through another is just too cool! (especially when they are that close together). Keep us Posted.

Mike K.

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Nice looking Mike, looking forward to the finished product.
As for me, I usually scetch it to some degree unless it a simple and I mean simple product. Helps me work out proportions and steps. Bigger stuff, I'll do full scale drawings of a section that contains all elements or enough to do the project without forgetting something:rolleyes:

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great comments guys, thanks, I have most of the pieces done, just have not come to a conclusion on assembly means, I may need to make a jig to hold it while peening the ends of the uprights, and I think I might elevate 2 of the candles, or maybe just the one in the center, dunno, but I did fishtail the ends of the horizontals, pics to follow soon.

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  • 1 month later...

Mike I usually draw my pattern out on a bench top, preferably the one I am working on. then I can use a measuring tool to work out the lengths of each piece of stock material I need to start off with. Then calculate how much I draw out and deduct that from the length. It also acts as a template to lay my worked piece over to ensure it is the required shape.
Chris

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Good luck with the double pass through. Easier said than done. I recently passed 20 mm (3/4") round bar through another 20 mm round bar. Slitting and drifting into round bar at right angles by hand is hard enough but I had to get it through at varying angles and align with the other multiple pass throughs to complete the arcs. Never want to do that again. Must make a note to remind me never to accept a job like that again. Although it did pay well.
Chris

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The pass throughs went well, now it is up to me to be able to compress the springs, hold everything in alignment and then heat and peen the ends, Mark Aspery gave me an idea of tapping and threading some points to hold, then working one by one, but I've done very little tap and die work, so I'm kinda chicken!!

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Taps are expensive to replace. Go slow turn them in a bit approximately 1/4 turn then back em out til U hear a click where it sheers the thread swarf. then wind in a bit more. repeating the stups til you reach the desired depth. keep the tap very straight and use cutting oil / fluid or paste like Trefolex of similar. Post pics when U finish I'd love to see them.
Chris

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for starters, check out this drilling and tapping chart to work out what size hole you need to drill to accommodate the tap you choose.
http://www.sutton.com.au/uploads/downloads/Industrial_Products/Taps/TechnicalInfo/IPD05TapDrillSize_tap.pdf
Any tap you buy should do the trick but P & N or Sutton Brands are by far the best and will last a lifetime if used correctly.
Take care when drilling (use lots of coolant) to avoid work hardening and use ample cutting paste or fluid when tapping (Trefolex or similar). Work slowly and back off at the slightest resistance. Check out ebay for taps and die, they have reasonably good sets of about 100 taps / dies for around $100 AUD which includes the holding tools. P&N or sutton will set you back $30 AUD Each tap.

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got any tips on where and what to buy? I have not gotten any yet, and fathers day is just around the corner!!


MSC Industrial supply has nearly every tap and and die commonly available.
Just reading through their catalogue is an education in its self.
www1.mscdirect.com. The big thing, as mentioned in the other thread is not the tap or die it is the sizing. They do carry all the stuff needed.

Sears sells decent tap and die sets. My problem with them is that they don't carry the drill bits to go with them. Some really top flight hardware stores carry letter drill bits but most are just so so and you get looks a lot.

You may be better off in the long run to buy the taps, dies, and drill bits as you need them than to invest in a set.
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