Journal of the

Home Metal Shop Club of Houston

Volume 6, Number 6 - June 2001

President - Vance Burns

Vice President - Dennis Cranston

Treasurer - Tom Moore

Secretary - Dick Kostelnicek

Newsletter Editors - Keith Mitchell, David Whittaker, and Jan Rowland


Membership Information: Membership is open to all those interested in machining metal and tinkering with machines. The purpose of the club is to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas and information. This includes, to a large degree, education in the art of machine tools and practices. There is a severe shortage of written information that a beginning hobbyist can use. This makes an organization such as this even more important.

Chips Meeting

1:00 P.M. May 19, 2001, Collier Library

By Dick Kostelnicek - Secretary

Vance Burns - President presiding

Attendance: 28 members. Visitors: Owen Morgan, Hal Borland


Activities during the Chips Meeting

Vance Burns showed a video titled "Locks, Keys, and Files" filmed by Industrial Archeological Reporting. The video had no narration but showed various punch press operations various production manufacturing processes and file cutting techniques.

Vance Burns thanked the Houston Area Live Steamers "HALS" for hosting our meeting at their Zube park facility for the April meeting.

Tom Moore invited all HMSC members as his guests for the HALS Live Steam Congregation May 26 27 to be held at Zube park near Hockey, TX.

Vance Burns mentioned two upcoming activities: IronFest, the blacksmithing conference held at Grapevine, TX; June 1- 3. Miniature gun show, to be held in Houston, TX.

John Korman has a lot of surplus stuff that he would like to pass on to club members. Contact him for specifics.

Vance Burns brought in some of his all time favorite books: "Tool Steel" by Frank Palmer and G. Luerssen and "Hardening Tempering and Heat Treating" by Tubal Cain.

Joe Williams demonstrated the use of a "growler" to test an armature from a recently burned out dc motor.

Bill Swann brought some thermoelectric devices like those used in Iglo coolers for sale.

Rich Pichler showed a video that featured Triple S Dynamics method for transporting granular material by shaking the conveyed belt with a fast velocity in one direction and a slow one in the other.

Show and Tell

Vance Burns showed a 2x72 inch vertical belt sander that he purchased for $385.

Joe Scott showed some machine belting and a method of gluing it together. He also demonstrated a holddown fixture for mass-producing gun parts on a mill.

Dick Kostelnicek showed an unconventional drill press vice that he built in another life and has used extensively over the past 30 years.

Joe Williams demonstrates a large Geneva Mechanism that he milled together with the numerical control code used to produce it. Also, he demonstrated the use of a lathe spring winding fixture that fits in an Aloris type tool holder.

Dennis Cranston showed the casting set from Allen Models that he is machining for a 7-1/2 inch gauge locomotive engine.

Gordon Stranton passed out a list of shop equipment that he has for sale.

Ed Gladkowski showed the fixture that he made for holding and shortening machine screws in the lathe.

This Month's Photo Gallery 


Feature Presentation 

The Norton Products rep. canceled for this month's presentation. 

Dick Kostelnicek and Fred Muear discussed their experiences at the recent NAMES convention held in Wyandotte, Ml.  Fred and Dick both passed out photographs of selected model examples that were displayed. Dick Kostelnicek described his visit to the Ford Museum and Greenfield Village near Detroit MI.

President's Notes

by Vance Burnes
This June we will be electing new officers to lead the club into the upcoming year. We all get so much from the club - it makes good sense to "put something back. When the nominating comity member speaks to you about service for the club, don't lose your nerve. It's too simple to say no, but it means so much to say yes. If you've ever thought of something you'd like to change, or had a good idea for the club, this is your opportunity to make your voice heard.

Remember when you were given your first major responsibility, and it seemed like a larger task than you were comfortable with - or perhaps even larger than you could handle? Remember that you fought through your apprehensions and struggled through those difficult moments, finally realizing it was within you to complete the task?

None of us think we have the time to do these elected tasks, but we have the time to attend meetings Friend, it takes little more time that what you've committed to already. Be ready to help, be read to stand when called upon, be ready to serve. .

Article on DIN History

The following was edited from a letter by a German member of the CAD_CAM EDM DRO E-group to which a few of us HMSC members belong:

It is a sad matter of fact that many inventions and technical improvements have had origins in wars. And the same goes for industrial standards. Industrial Standards play a very big role in our vocation and hobby; without them we wouldn't be able to do what we do. Did you never wonder why the DIN is so militarily applied?

Only 100 years ago there were nearly no standards, if at all company standards. In a catalog of one tool provider, they put an extract of the first catalog of the company. Around 1905 they claimed: "We proudly announce that all of our bolts and nuts come in perfectly matched pairs!" (would you be able to work having to buy screws and nuts that are matched pair by pair ?)

ID Germany to that time there existed only the REFA "Reichsauschuss fur Arbeitsstudien" (Imperial Committee board for labour studies) which was founded around 1880 to 1895. It is still operating and is dedicated to the elaboration of work preparation, production planning, time and movement studies, etc. There is no German engineer who leaves college without absorbing at least one of those courses. Contrastingly, Henry Ford and the Japanese SHITSUKE simply applied their work in their own way.

Here the story of DIN:

When the first world war started, the German army was equipped with 127 (123?) different kinds of light fire weapons and used 23 (279?) different types of ammunition. Can you imagine the logistic problems? Statistic tells that at least 70.000 German soldiers were gone in the first 5 month of the war because their regiments were supplied with enough ammunition but the wrong kinds ! !

As I understand, something similar happened to the British and French Armies too.

In early 1915 in a great rush, the whole German weapon industry was reorganized, lined up and
standardized. The number of weapons and ammunitions was drastically cut down and production tolerances were prescribed to the factories. It was the first nation wide industrial standard. This was the beginning of DIN (Deutsche Industrie Norm. It possibly had a different name at that outset). Still, during the war it was applied to most of the German industry.

As understandable, the best quality was not necessarily delivered, because the industry was forced to push out maximum production. One of the first results of this standardization that got delivered to the army was the machine gun type "08" from the year 1915. It was rugged, inaccurately made, so the barrel frequently got stuck and a shot blew back. That is why "0815" became the synonymn of "THE STANDARDIZED MEDIOCRITY" in Germany.

Still today, if something is made according to industrial standards it must not necessarily mean that it is made of good quality.

And at the same time the above told story is the one of the reasons why DIN (Valid synonym: DAS IST NORM (that is norm)) is so militarily observed. Actually Germany is so over-regulated that it is very difficult to develop a pew product, because everything has to fulfill all kinds of specifications, standards and laws and may not interfere with patents of someone else.

There are quite a few other things relative to this that it might be interesting to look to some background.

For example did you know that until the mid 80's certain CNC controls were under a U.S. military ban, prohibiting their exportation? The Hillier-mill [the writer] will have to realign next week was once down for 6 months because the owner had to get a special permit from the U.S.-government in order to be able to import one replacement board of the control. It sounds nuts but it is true!

Things like this make me believe that the members of this e-group [CAD_CAM_EDM_DRO] are highly privileged. Because we are living in peace, in relatively stable democracies and are allowed to do what we want, how we want.

Editor's Note

By Jan Rowland

As members who attend meetings or read this newsletter carefully, each month know, there is a trio of us, each of whom "take turns" publishing this newsletter. Surely everyone appreciates that we each "have a life", so this does not always run smoothly! A main problem at the moment is that we each do not have drafts of articles, ready to publish, in each issue. Keith has the second part of a longer article he had already begun, but David and I still need drafts of articles of wisdom from the membership! It has proven so difficult as to be "impossible" for one of us to try to "do the newsletter" while waiting for an article in the hands of another of us, typeset on a different software, part "on-disk" and part "camera-ready", etc. Just doesn't work! That is, each of us should have a stock of articles on our hobby/craft, ready to be set into the next newsletter that "Editorial Committee member" is to do. So... Let's get to writing! Pictures?

NOTICE ! ! ! The Next Meeting will be held a WEEK EARLIER than before. Due to conflicts with the library's scheduling, we will meet at 1:00 PM on the second Saturday of the month, at the Collier Library, 6200 Pinemont (see map!). So, our next meeting is scheduled for 9 June 2001. Bring in a project you've been working on!

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