Reducing axle diameter

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Winander
Posts: 112
Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2014 12:19 pm

Reducing axle diameter

Postby Winander » Tue Jun 14, 2016 11:54 am

I have started this thread by quoting a post from the one on "Getting the wheels square" here viewtopic.php?f=19&t=4911&start=25#p46243

Paul Townsend wrote:If starting from raw material > 1/8th " then turn to about 3 thou under 1/8"
If starting with a 1/8th axle or silver steel, as I did, it is best done by grinding....
You don't even need a lathe:

Don eye protector goggles,
Hold axle in dremel etc and approach the ends with a slip stone...just tickle it at very slight angle for a taper.
Test fit.
repeat until axle just slips gently into wheel and a bit beyond B2B
If wheel wobbles a lot you have overdone it.

Or if you have access to a lathe use a proper tool post grinder.

Some axle material will be soft enough to do it with a fine file.


I received my reamer this morning and tried it out on a High Level hornblock. Unfortunately the tubing I purchased from Eileens for split axles still will not fit. So I need to reduce its diameter as I'm not going to buy a slightly bigger reamer.

I have a few questions:
Why not use a lathe if reducing from an 1/8" axle when you would for one that it slightly over that size?
Is a slip stone the thing you would use for sharpening chisels/knives etc - I would call it an oil stone?

Thanks for the tip Paul, producing a special undersize axle sounds an excellent solution.

regards
Richard

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Tim V
Posts: 2109
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2008 4:40 pm

Re: Reducing axle diameter

Postby Tim V » Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:36 pm

What does the tube measure out at? Is it 0.125"?
Tim V

Winander
Posts: 112
Joined: Thu Mar 20, 2014 12:19 pm

Re: Reducing axle diameter

Postby Winander » Tue Jun 14, 2016 8:01 pm

3.195mm measured with a micrometer = 0.1257874"

I have two tubes and they are consistent.

thanks
Richard

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Paul Townsend
Posts: 650
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:09 pm

Re: Reducing axle diameter

Postby Paul Townsend » Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:25 am

Winander wrote:I have started this thread by quoting a post from the one on "Getting the wheels square" here viewtopic.php?f=19&t=4911&start=25#p46243

Paul Townsend wrote:If starting from raw material > 1/8th " then turn to about 3 thou under 1/8"
If starting with a 1/8th axle or silver steel, as I did, it is best done by grinding....
You don't even need a lathe:

Don eye protector goggles,
Hold axle in dremel etc and approach the ends with a slip stone...just tickle it at very slight angle for a taper.
Test fit.
repeat until axle just slips gently into wheel and a bit beyond B2B
If wheel wobbles a lot you have overdone it.

Or if you have access to a lathe use a proper tool post grinder.

Some axle material will be soft enough to do it with a fine file.


I received my reamer this morning and tried it out on a High Level hornblock. Unfortunately the tubing I purchased from Eileens for split axles still will not fit. So I need to reduce its diameter as I'm not going to buy a slightly bigger reamer.

I have a few questions:
Why not use a lathe if reducing from an 1/8" axle when you would for one that it slightly over that size?
Is a slip stone the thing you would use for sharpening chisels/knives etc - I would call it an oil stone?

Thanks for the tip Paul, producing a special undersize axle sounds an excellent solution.

regards

If you start with a 1/8" axle and try to turn a smidgeon off in a lathe with normal cutting tools it will be VERY hard to take a small enough amount off. This requires more skill and sharper tools than I have anyway.

Grinding gives better control for the smidgeon required.

Yes oilstone is it but a small finger sized one not the big one in a box from hardware shops that you use for chisels. Readily available as Arkansas and others from model engineer suppliers like Chronos et al. Eileens do some emery sticks that would do it.
Strips of emery paper or "wet & dry" also viable but require you to get up close and personal with spinning chuck so hazardous although a standard technique. Lubricate with thin oil.

Regarding Eileens stainless steel axle tube.
Derek started stocking this about 4 years ago arising from a comment I made about the difficulty of getting accurate ground 1/8" material nowadays rod OR tube...the rod in carbon steel used to be commonly available, now only as silver steel which is a bu%$^r to drill through for split axles! When he first had some of the tube I bought a lifetimes supply and have used some successfully in High Level axleboxes. I wonder if he has restocked with a less accurate product.

Beware EBays adverts for 1/8th tube...none are accurate enough for our axles.

As Tim says you need to measure it.

My suggestions for grinding down may help but expect to use loctite as you are unlikely to achieve an tight interference fit into the wheel. The required running fit in bearing should be viable with practice. You dont need to reduce all axle length, just the ends except for the geared one.

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Paul Townsend
Posts: 650
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:09 pm

Re: Reducing axle diameter

Postby Paul Townsend » Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:39 am

Paul Townsend wrote:
Winander wrote:I have started this thread by quoting a post from the one on "Getting the wheels square" here viewtopic.php?f=19&t=4911&start=25#p46243

Paul Townsend wrote:If starting from raw material > 1/8th " then turn to about 3 thou under 1/8"
If starting with a 1/8th axle or silver steel, as I did, it is best done by grinding....
You don't even need a lathe:

Don eye protector goggles,
Hold axle in dremel etc and approach the ends with a slip stone...just tickle it at very slight angle for a taper.
Test fit.
repeat until axle just slips gently into wheel and a bit beyond B2B
If wheel wobbles a lot you have overdone it.

Or if you have access to a lathe use a proper tool post grinder.

Some axle material will be soft enough to do it with a fine file.


I received my reamer this morning and tried it out on a High Level hornblock. Unfortunately the tubing I purchased from Eileens for split axles still will not fit. So I need to reduce its diameter as I'm not going to buy a slightly bigger reamer.

I have a few questions:
Why not use a lathe if reducing from an 1/8" axle when you would for one that it slightly over that size?
Is a slip stone the thing you would use for sharpening chisels/knives etc - I would call it an oil stone?

Thanks for the tip Paul, producing a special undersize axle sounds an excellent solution.

regards

If you start with a 1/8" axle and try to turn a smidgeon off in a lathe with normal cutting tools it will be VERY hard to take a small enough amount off. This requires more skill and sharper tools than I have anyway. The 3 thou I suggested is probably too much in one go. You need to aim for one thou cuts up to 3 times and trial fit at each stage.
What you are actually doing is toolmaking...the top end of turner's skillset.

Grinding gives better control for the smidgeon required.

Yes oilstone is it but a small finger sized one not the big one in a box from hardware shops that you use for chisels. Readily available as Arkansas and others from model engineer suppliers like Chronos et al. Eileens do some emery sticks that would do it.
Strips of emery paper or "wet & dry" also viable but require you to get up close and personal with spinning chuck so hazardous although a standard technique. Lubricate with thin oil.

Regarding Eileens stainless steel axle tube.
Derek started stocking this about 4 years ago arising from a comment I made about the difficulty of getting accurate ground 1/8" material nowadays rod OR tube...the rod in carbon steel used to be commonly available, now only as silver steel which is a bu%$^r to drill through for split axles! When he first had some of the tube I bought a lifetimes supply and have used some successfully in High Level axleboxes. I wonder if he has restocked with a less accurate product.

Beware EBays adverts for 1/8th tube...none are accurate enough for our axles.

As Tim says you need to measure it.

My suggestions for grinding down may help but expect to use loctite or best of all, pin your wheels, as you are unlikely to achieve an tight interference fit into the wheel. The required running fit in bearing should be viable with practice. You dont need to reduce all axle length, just the ends except for the geared one.

User avatar
Paul Townsend
Posts: 650
Joined: Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:09 pm

Re: Reducing axle diameter

Postby Paul Townsend » Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:48 am

Winander wrote:3.195mm measured with a micrometer = 0.1257874"

I have two tubes and they are consistent.

thanks

Sorry but 7 decimal places with any micrometer is meaningless.
However the 4th decimal does suggest they are oversize by a fraction of a thou.

My suggestions re grinding may help but the original thread about getting them on square told you about taper broaches. Get a set of smoothing broaches (Eileens, Chronos, Walsh etc) which cut finest of all and twiddle the 1/8th one through the axle bearing from both sides. Test and fit at every twiddle. The taper will be so small as to just act as an oil reservoir.


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