Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

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NewcastleFalcon
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Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

..or alternatively what could I make out of this....
Original Photography (how can you tell!!!) by N.Falcon
Original Photography (how can you tell!!!) by N.Falcon
goldbar.jpg (9.87 KiB) Viewed 1557 times
Its a piece of Key Steel about a foot long 8mm x 8mm and by hook or by crook its going to turn into the perfect timing belt tensioner adjuster for a 2.0hdi 8 valve engine, as fitted to my Citroen Xsara Picasso.

Suggestions welcome...with the restricted space, and air conditioning pipes between the tensioner and the bodywork its going to as a whole have to adopt an "L-shape" although being key steel its going to be hard as nails and maybe not possible to achieve the sharp bend required.

I have used a number of improvised tools over the years some of which I have posted in the past but it may be nice to have a thread to fill up with "tales of the toolbag"

Regards Neil
Last edited by NewcastleFalcon on 28 Aug 2019, 09:15, edited 2 times in total.

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hirsty
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by hirsty »

Would you believe the C5 BOL actually suggests using the square bar from door handles to do the same job? :shock: :shock:

hirsty

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Timmo
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by Timmo »

If you have a blow torch I'd be tempted to work out the length needed, pop it in a vice and heat it up then bend it to shape?? I'm guessing it would need to be allen key shape?

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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Timmo wrote:If you have a blow torch I'd be tempted to work out the length needed, pop it in a vice and heat it up then bend it to shape?? I'm guessing it would need to be allen key shape?
You wouldn't believe my lack of "Forging" equipment. I have a normal gas cooker with four gas rings, and a "shoemakers last", plenty hammers though! I may be wrong but I imagine my "key steel" may need more heat than my gas rings can supply! I did imagine making an Allen key shape when I got it, but may have to resort to a simple cut it to the right length approach in a short stumpy bit and clag the largest mole grips I can get into the space onto the square profile and use that to set the tension.

I will probably give the forging a go though for pure entertainment value!
hirsty wrote:Would you believe the C5 BOL actually suggests using the square bar from door handles to do the same job? :shock: :shock: hirsty
Yes the BOL does come up with the odd useful "tool-tip".

Regards Neil

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Timmo
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by Timmo »

I picked up a blow torch from the local wholesalers as I really wanted to try a bit of brazing as an alternative to welding when mangineering in the shed! ;-)

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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Well I'm quite pleased with myself, stage 1 of the 2.0HDi Timing Belt Tensioner tool has been completed.

Here is the evidence....
Original (SOOF) Photography by N.Falcpn
Original (SOOF) Photography by N.Falcpn
tool.jpg (24.44 KiB) Viewed 1524 times
Method:-
Get the inner bit from an axle stand and place it upside down on a flat surface.
Drop your 1 foot long 8mm x 8mm piece of key steel into the open-end.
Find a hammer and have it ready.

Select an old 3/8ths ring spanner which you haven't used since 1978 from your toolbox.
Grab with molegrips, switch on gas ring no 4, poke the ring end of the spanner into the flame and let it lie while you have a cup of tea.

Return to the cooker and see if the ring end of the spanner has turned a dull cherry red.

Move swiftly from the cooker to the "forge" and hammer the ring end over the square section key-steel.
Abracadabra! Works a treat.

Stage 2 hardly worth documenting saw the key steel to the appropriate length.

Can I claim my "FCF home blacksmithing with limited equipment" badge?

Regards Neil

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Timmo
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by Timmo »

What stage does the shovel get used?
Is it, when adjusting the tensioner and it slips, get the shovel and go all Basil Fawlty on its Ass! :shock: :-D ;-)

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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Timmo wrote:What stage does the shovel get used?
Is it, when adjusting the tensioner and it slips, get the shovel and go all Basil Fawlty on its Ass! :shock: :-D ;-)
:-D very likely....just basking in the glory of completion of stage one with a little bit of creativity at the moment. I think a decent 90 degree sharp/short bend in that key steel would have been difficult to achieve at my "blacksmith's shop".

Regards Neil

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CitroJim
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by CitroJim »

Neil, I like it :D Very resourceful!

I have made up no end of special tools over the years for may jobs on Xantias, including a full set of special tools needed to overhaul HP20 gearboxes and repair Activa rams...

They occupy a whole drawer in my workshop..

Some are as simple as a bent spanner to get at the exhaust flange nuts on a V6 and others are a little more complex - like a puller to remove aircon compressor pulleys.

Many have ben knocked up on the lathe... A most useful tool in any workshop...

Timmo, brazing is a good skill to have... With it you are then well-placed to build a sphere tester ;)

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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by lexi »

What kind of lathe do you have Jim? Serious money in those little Myford type. If you have no oxy for heating metal, you can use charcoal. A calor gas bottle cut down to 100mm does nicely for a forge. You can feed it with hairdryer. If you are heating with a gas torch, use some breeze block to keep the heat in. I often stick things in the log burner that I want to forge.
Along with Jim's lathe, a welder is the most useful thing in a workshop. Even a cheap stick machine will get your tools made up.

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CitroJim
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by CitroJim »

lexi wrote:What kind of lathe do you have Jim?
A Myford ML7 dating from 1953 Lexi. Complete with virtually all period accessories too :)

It's been in our family since new and I inherited it from my dad. It was originally bought new by his brother - my uncle Ken - who was a blacksmith and farrier as well as a very skilled engineer. He let dad have the ML7 when he upgraded...

My uncle Ken was very deeply into the stationary engine preservation movement and had a collection of early engines including a few gas engines with 'hotspot' ignition and atmospheric inlet valves... A bit like a diesel they needed pre-heating to start them - with a paraffin blowlamp...

He had massive 2-stroke stationary engine at one time. A Petter I think it was.

He was an interesting character...

I think you may see where I get it from now - runs in the family...

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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by electronmirror »

"A Myford ML7"
You lucky man Jim. :-)

In the metalwork class when I was at school there were 5 ML7s and 3 Boxford lathes. A large forge about 4' square, wet tuyere, sat in one corner of the workshop. All long since gone 'cos of 'elth & safety. Can you imagine 14 year old kids these days being allowed to wield a large hammer beating hell out of red hot metal bars to make pokers, wrought iron gates etc. :-D
There was also a shaping machine that fascinated me because of the slow forward stroke and quick return of the ram and the repetitive clacking of the clapper box on the return stroke.

Happy days :-)

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white exec
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by white exec »

Happy days at school, and then whilst teaching, with Harrison, Boxford and Myford.
All I can boast now is a Ferm FHB-940 6-speed woodlathe - although I have added 3-jaw and 4-jaw chucks and chuck-centres. Pressed into use to work with plastic and the odd bit of non-precision metal (like those blanking-off bleed screws for the EVs).

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CitroJim
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by CitroJim »

electronmirror wrote:In the metalwork class when I was at school there were 5 ML7s and 3 Boxford lathes. A large forge about 4' square, wet tuyere, sat in one corner of the workshop.
Just like ours except we only had three ML7s...

Happy days indeed.. It was where I learned a lot of my early metal-bashing skills.. I agree, A real shame it's all gone now and we're doing a severe injustice to our kids as a result.

When my kids were at school it was called "Resistant Materials Tech" or some such and they were forbidden to do anything remotely risky...

Hence they have no skills...

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van ordinaire
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Re: Toolbag Tales-Homemade and improvised tools

Post by van ordinaire »

My favourite special tool, which according to the workshop manual, you need to change the clutch in a MkII Consul/Zephyr/Zodiac is - a 23" 1/2-drive extension! (also, almost certainly, the easiest to do without)
Last edited by van ordinaire on 29 Dec 2018, 00:14, edited 1 time in total.