Chesapeake Area Metalworking Society

Museum Machine Shop Restoration Project

Tuckahoe is best known for it annual show held west of Easton, MD on rt.50. In 1999 it was held July 9 - 11. There was a pavilion devoted to modelers, with a live steam manifold. There was also a flea market cover at least ten acres with machine tools, engines, etc. and also an auction of machinery of all kinds.

Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association - Club collects, restores, and displays antique industrial and agricultural machinery. This is a very active club with a permanent facility located just north of Easton, MD where they house the exhibits and host an annual show. More information is available on the association's page HERE.

In late 1999 the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association contacted CAMS about the possibility of working with them to move an antique machine shop and set up a new museum at Tuckahoe. What follows is a chronicle of this project.

Photos of some of the restored machines at Tuckahoe can be seen HERE.

A gallery of photos from early Tuckahoe restoration efforts can be seen HERE.

Pictures from the year 2000 Tuckahoe Steam show can be seen HERE.

 History and work reports from prior years:

        The year 2002.

        The year 2001.

        The year 2000.

Current work reports from Tuckahoe restoration efforts, in reverse chronological order.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #105, Saturday, December 10, 2005

Seven of us, including Jeff Greenblatt, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich, made further progress on the machine tool restoration project.

We were happy to welcome back one of our "long gone" members, John McCalla. John has been busy recently building a baronial estate in Orange County, Virginia, so we haven't seen much of him at Tuckahoe for the past few months. We are informed that the plans for the dependencies include a sizable shop building, perhaps roomy enough for him to drive his tractor into for cold-weather maintenance. (A building project of this scope requires woodworking tools, so Jerry let his dark side show by stroking John's interest in wood butchering.) John is well up to his task, but concedes that it is a lot of work.

At long last, we took care of a vexing problem that arose back in the spring on the long-bed F. E. Reed lathe. One of our number had wrenched the square head off of one of the two setscrews which secure the headstock bushings for the eccentrics that carry the back gear into and out of engagement. The event occurred while trying to tighten the grip on the bearings to prevent the backgear from "walking" out of engagement. We applied numerous broken-screw-removal technologies without success (due in large part to our initial reluctance to move the lathe or the headstock away from the false wall it was displayed near--some of us spent the better part of at least three pre-show work sessions attacking the broken screw by leaning through a window in the false wall). Finally, good sense prevailed, and we removed the headstock, muscled it to the workbench (thanks, John and Dave!), finished drilling out the screw, then picked out the thread remnants. We then chased both of the tapped holes with a tap and the remaining original setscrew with a die. We did note that the original holes must have been tapped with an undersized tap! Fortunately, our earlier efforts did not completely destroy the tapped hole the screw broke in--the threads were still usable. We returned the headstock to the lathe (thanks again, John and Dave!) and reassembled the unit.

Jeff connected the new keyboard to the computer, and attempted to get us going on the inventory database project. Jeff has developed a format that will allow us to keep detailed information on the tools and share portions of it with the website. Unfortunately, the computer did not want to cooperate (the machine froze whenever we attempted to use the CD-ROM drive), so further applied maintenance (including more memory and a new CD-ROM drive) will be necessary.

Jerry and Dick continued to evaluate the back gear problem on the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. They determined that both end faces of the gear assembly are deformed out of square; the end near the small gear is about 0.010 off; the other end less so. It is probable that this damage occurred when the center shaft was also bent. (The back gear assembly shows evidence of abuse - principally what appear to be pipe wrench jaw marks--by an unqualified operator.) Consequently, the gears may be toed in, rather than parallel. A plan for repair and rehabilitation is a-forming.

Some of the crew worked on the Rhodes shaper/slotter, figuring out the parts needed to reactivate the feed mechanism. (We are coming closer to having an in-house capability for this kind of work.) One of the feed screws for the Rhodes was straightened.

We also took a look at the large Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe to evaluate the work remaining to be done before that machine can be made operational.

In an earlier work report, we noted the presence of quite a bit of surplus railroad rail, mostly in small sizes, and in varying grades of condition on the Tuckahoe grounds. We pondered the possibility of cutting lengths of this rail for sale as do-it-yourself anvil kits, a prospect that excited a remarkable response from our fellow CAMS-ers. Well, upon arriving onsite for this work session, we noted that one of the piles of rail had been carted off. We had known that the club was disposing of a lot of the dead iron on the grounds, but were not aware that the rail pile in question was targeted for elimination in so summary a manner. There is still rail on the property, so we may still be able to pursue the anvil project - further exploration and evaluation will be necessary.

We continue to develop our ideas for conducting a permanent inventory of the machine tool collection. Jeff has been spearheading this project offsite, and he has done a remarkable job of producing a sort of "draft website" of selected collection items. We plan to have a brainstorming session at our next work date (Saturday, January 28) to move this project forward a little further.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #104, Saturday, November 12, 2005

Six of us, including Vince Iorio, Jeff Greenblatt, Jerry Tuwiner, Dave Welser, Luther Dietrich, made modest progress on the machine tool restoration project.

During the course of tidying up the exhibit area for the annual show back in July, we placed bits and pieces of our works-in-project into storage until we could resume our regular work sessions. One lot of such bits and pieces included an index plate and the sector arms for the Garvin dividing head (acquired separately from the Garvin horizontal milling machine, but intended for use on it). We are still unable to find these parts. Accordingly, we devoted what seemed like an inordinate amount of time searching all of the likely hiding spots, with no success. As a result, our work session was less productive overall than we would have liked. This parts misplacement underscores the need for an improved inventory/checkout system.

Our overall lack of productivity notwithstanding, we did complete one "heavy lifting" project. We had hastily assembled the major parts of the Garvin horizontal mill shortly before the show, knowing that there were some small parts remaining that would need to be installed when we had more time. Two such parts were a pair of plungers and coil springs found in a plastic medicine bottle labeled "detents and springs for Garvin table drive". An examination of the Garvin table drive revealed that (a) the installation locations for the plungers and springs were not obvious, and (b) the table had to be removed to access the table drive. Accordingly, we unlimbered the engine hoist, rigged it to the table, disconnected the lead screw, and slid/lifted the table free of the mill. With the drive mechanism exposed, we were able to determine where the parts went and insert them. With the usual amount of jimmying, the drive mechanism was remounted to the saddle, and the table was re-installed. It turns out that the plungers and springs apply a fairly strong downward force to the (pivoted) drive mechanism, allowing it to disengage vigorously when the adjustable stop on the bottom of the table engages the release plunger. (It wasn't obvious that the springs were missing before because the mechanism disengages fairly sharply due to gravity. Doubtless the springs will be helpful if grease and gunk accumulate in the drive mechanism, inhibiting the effectiveness of gravity action.)

In our last work report, we promised Jerry continued opportunities to "buzz" some rusty old parts with the rotary wire wheel. Jerry pursued these opportunities by cleaning some jaws for the three-jaw vertical turret lathe table.

We staged a mid-afternoon scavenging operation after we noted that someone deposited a number of wood pallets on a woodpile at the north end of the property. One of our veterans, Frank Rabbit, had suggested (two or three years ago!) that we use pallets to organize the components when we disassemble a machine tool. So, in an effort to put this plan into action, we retrieved three of the better-looking pallets for project purposes.

We investigated the "new" computer in the library room with an eye towards starting a computerized inventory project. Although the machine came to life perfectly when we plugged it in and turned it on, the project rapidly stalled when we discovered that there was no keyboard present. Dave subsequently contributed a keyboard.

Finally, Dave brought some more books from the John Webb collection, which Jeff shelved in the library.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #103, Saturday, October 1, 2005

Six members of the machine tool restoration crew, including Jeff Greenblatt, Vince Iorio, Richard McBirney, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich, pushed the project ahead a little farther at the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association's Rural Life Museum.

The Tuckahoe forklift was brought out of storage again to help get things organized in the newest trailer. We moved the "no-name" cylindrical grinder out of the trailer in which the bulk of our acquisitions from the Suydam property are stored. Now we can get into the Suydam trailer much easier. We went in with the oil spray can and put some more oil on things. There was a little surface rust on a couple of items but nothing serious.

We also moved some of those machines around in the trailers. While we were thus occupied we discovered a pile of vertical turret lathe jaws for the older vertical turret lathe with the three jaw chuck. We may be able to use sets of three and make a fourth to outfit the Bullard's four-jaw chuck. If so, some modification will be required. Many of these have have already been modified to hold material from the inside and we can probably reclaim some of those also. We cleaned up several of these jaws and some of the other vertical turret lathe tooling as well. (Special note to Jerry: There is still more wire wheel brushing to do, so don't panic! We wouldn't dream of excluding you from this process.)

We examined yet again the back gear components from the Garvin horizontal mill and formulated a plan to correct the abuse that these unfortunate parts had received during their career. We will be machining a new shaft and boring out the carrier for new sintered bronze Oilite-style bearings. Although this approach will deviate from the original cast-iron-running-on-steel-shaft scheme, the new bearings will be completely concealed from view when the machine is assembled.

We replaced the chuck jaws that Dave had reground in his home shop for the F. E. Reed long-bed lathe four-jaw chuck. The jaws work much better now. There was no noticeable rocking of the test shaft when Dick clamped it in the reworked jaws. We found, though, that with one problem corrected, another surfaced. Surely this must be a first in the annals of Western Civilization!) A certain amount of play was noted in the F. E. Reed spindle bearings. We inserted shims and corrected a good deal of the problem, but more thorough checking for runout awaits another work session.

Dave brought several boxes of manuals, texts, reference works, and trade literature donated by John Webb's family. This material is greatly appreciated, as it will provide a quantum leap in our on-site reference and research capabilities. Jeff arranged all of this literature on shelves in the Tuckahoe library in one of the secure rooms in the Rural Life Museum. Eventually we will have to inventory the literature collection (as well as the machine tool collection currently sprawling over the museum, three trailers, and a container). Happily, there is a new computer intended for that purpose in the library.

The uncertainty over the whereabouts of the Garvin dividing head components showed us that we need to do better at taking pictures of our machines before we disassemble them. It would be great if these could be attached to an inventory record in the computer. We should also take pictures of everything we have restored and anything that is in the museum awaiting restoration.

Although we did not reach any firm conclusions, we continued to consider what machine(s) we should work on next. Some suggested a surface grinder, which we have two of, and which we will certainly need in the new machine shop. Also under consideration are an unrestored cutter-grinder that is currently in the museum building, the partially-restored drill grinder also currently in the museum, or one of the power hacksaws. There is also sentiment to not undertake any new projects in the near future, concentrating our efforts instead on completing restoration and repair of the machines currently receiving our attention. Dick, ever the soul of reasoned moderation, suggested consulting with others at Tuckahoe to see what type of additional machining capabilities would best support the club's mission. The discussion continues on this issue.

Current projects underway include the small Rhodes shaper/slotter, the Garvin horizontal milling machine, the long-bed 14-inch F. E. Reed lathe, and the 24-inch Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe. Of these, the machine that has received the least attention from us is the big lathe. The back gear (currently "outsourced" to George Cohen for repair/replacement due to a broken tooth) should not hold up the large number of other things we need to do there.

In mid-afternoon, several us us took a walking tour to the rear of the Tuckhoe club property on Longwood Road to feed a hoard of woefully-emaciated Eastern Shore mosquitoes and to investigate the prospect of opening a new vehicular entrance to the show grounds. We found that, by and large, the route is fairly clear. There is a lot of brush to be cleared, some piles of gravel to be moved, and some grading to be done in order to move portions of some dirt piles that have drifted our way from the neighboring lumber yard. While this isn't intimately connected to the machine tool restoration project, it is a legitimate club project, and one that we could contribute some person-power to. In fact Dave and Jerry have volunteered to run a loader and dump truck to move 20 loads of gravel so we can get to the actual job site. This would take place during the week and not interfere with our work sessions.

Dave reported after the work session that the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association voted to move $15,000 into the machine shop building fund. This brings our overall total to about $26,000 (or roughly a quarter of the total funds that will be needed for the building).

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #N, Saturday, August 27, 2005

Special Note: This work report is numbered "N" because we have observed a sabbatical year of sorts from issuing work reports on the project and have lost count of the work reports that should have been issued. The absence of work reports, though, does not imply inactivity on our part. During that period, we had two quite successful annual shows, a number of productive work sessions, and a significant subsidiary project in the acquisition, dismantling, and moving of the contents of an overhead-belt-driven machine shop on Maryland's upper Eastern Shore. (An illustrated account of that sub-project may be found in the June-July 2005 issue of "Engineers and Engines" magazine.)

In addition to these activities, we were saddened to experience the passing of one of our members, John Webb of Annapolis, on Sunday, August 14. A visitation and memorial service was held for John on Saturday, August 20. Following the service, a number of us gathered at Dave's house for a shop tour and quiet afternoon of hospitality, reminisces, and "shop talk".

Our restoration project story resumes on Saturday, August 27, 2005, when Jeff Greenblatt, Dick McBirney, Jerry Tuwiner, Dave Welser, Luther Dietrich and others assembled at the Tuckahoe Rural Life Museum. We were happy to welcome new members of the crew.

Dave fired up the large Tuckahoe forklift for the day's first project: moving our heavy contractors' cabinets from their temporary storage location in one of our trailers back into the museum. We also retrieved our work tables and tool boxes from around the museum and moved them back adjacent to the exhibit area to re-establish our work space. It looks much homier now with most of our stuff strewn throughout the aisle in the museum.

While the forklift was available, we took the opportunity to move the overhead-belt-drive LeBlond lathe that we had been donated for sale (to support the building fund) inside one of the freshly-vacated trailers. It had been stored in the open, on pallets, under tarps. The inside storage is much better.

Although we succeeded in restoring the Garvin horizontal milling machine to presentable appearance for the annual show on July 7-10, we were painfully aware that there was unacceptable binding in the back gear assembly that simply has to be corrected. After disassembling the back gear, we determined that the back gear carrier shaft is bent at least a few thousandths, so Dick took it home for some TLC. Dick subsequently reported that the shaft was bent equally (and probably simultaneously) in two places, about 3" from each end (approximately where the bearing surface terminates). These simultaneous bends have offset the center section of the shaft about 5.5 mils. [Speculation - How did the shaft get this much force applied to it? Where could such large and equal forces come from? Dick suspects that the eccentrics at the end of the shaft were the source; someone pounded on the taper pin handle, attempting to rotate the shaft in a direction it was not supposed to go.] We were aware that the shaft had been abused--the eccentric on the end that is drilled for a handle, consisting of a large taper pin, is missing a large "chunk" of original steel that has been replaced by poured lead. The sad part is that the shaft may be the least-abused element of the back gear assembly. Our plans call for examining the back gear itself (consisting of two spur gears of different diameters on opposite ends of a cast-iron tube), as well as the support brackets cast into the column, to determine all of the problem areas.

Our attempt to chuck the Garvin back gear carrier shaft into the F. E. Reed long-bed lathe for runout evaluation ended in failure when we determined that the lathe chuck jaws were badly worn in the classic "trumpet" configuration. Dave took the four chuck jaws to his home shop to grind their working faces back into usefulness. Hopefully the "ways" they operate in the chuck body are not in such bad condition that the grinding will be a useless activity.

Jerry cleaned some arbors that appeared from somewhere and busied himself on a variety of other jobs. In particular, he rigged Vince's small hand planer (which had been displayed in front of the large Rockford planer during the July show), placed it on a dolly and wheeled it out of harms way until Show time next year.

Reassembly of the Garvin indexing head was started. It was like doing a puzzle without a picture of the final product. A couple of issues surfaced. Dick McBirney will be making a new special bolt to replace one that had been put in place after the chuck was dropped sometime in its history. It was a poor job and we know that Dick will provide us with a first class replacement. Luther did some fitting (with a file) of one of the two new Woodruff keys.

Dick and Dave examined the vertical elevation mechanism on the Rockford planer and determined that the "clamps" that hold the bridge to the vertical ways were too tight to allow any movement. A little loosening allows the bridge to move up and down, and they felt that we should be able to take our show cuts like that. Then, if we are ever hogging some steel, we may want to "tighten up." Our veteran planer hand, Frank Rabbit, subsequently demurred, averring that the vertical elevation is to roughly position the cutter with respect to the workpiece, and that all subsequent movement of the cutting tool should be effected by the compound. To quote Frank, "UNCLAMPING THE BRIDGE ASSEMBLY WHILE IN OPERATION IS DANGEROUS ... MACHINE RIGIDITY AND FINISH QUALITY ARE GONE ... plus... ??? Where do all the stresses go???" (Emphasis in original.)

New member Jeff Greenblatt lent a hand in several areas, beginning with the restoration of the museum to its "normal" condition. His participation in our small group is much appreciated and most welcome. Dave proposed/sponsored him for membership at the September Membership Meeting of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association.

Luther brought up some possible fund raising ideas that are in context with what we do. Briefly summarized, they are: (1)Follow up on an offer by Jerry to produce a printed T-shirt with a design publicizing the project. (Jerry's son does such T-shirts, and has offered to help us. The big stumbling block is coming up with a design and artwork.) (2)Develop a machine tool calendar (similar to one offered by a source in North Carolina back in the 1980's). This would require considerable thought and planning, since we would probably have to develop a national marketing campaign, and calendars "spoil" if they are not sold promptly. (3)Offer for sale a line of publications that we have been offered a trade discount on by a South Carolina publisher. (4)Produce publications for sale from our private collections of trade literature on some of the machines in the collection. (5)Produce a poster or post cards featuring machining/machine shop/machine tool subjects. Additionally, Dick Mcbirney has offered to serve as chief master anvilwright if we decide to implement his suggestion to turn a pile of railroad rail currently rusting outside the museum into do-it-yourself anvil kits for sale.

Dick, who has experience in his shop with rail anvils believes that for this purpose the largest rail might be best. Some of it is over 6" tall; a 12" section of it would make a nice improvised anvil. He feels that we could attach this to a vertical stand made of some more rail (6" or smaller) to put it at a convenient height. A lot of the rail is too light (no more than two or three inches high, and some of it has bad rust on the base flange, so not all of the stock is suitable for anvil-making. (Perhaps some fairly thin cross-sectional slices could be made, which, with suitable finishing, could make serviceable paperweights for rail fans.)

Dave collected the money (contributions from attendees and proceeds from the sale of the "Omnium Gatherum" posters provided by Ben Clark) from the show and will pass it on to Tom Booze for deposit in the Machine Shop Building Fund account.

We missed our two Johns and look forward to seeing John McCalla, who is busy building a new house in Central Virginia, at least occasionally in the future.

Tuckahoe caretaker David "Bullet" Wooters came by in the afternoon and gave a tour of the main buildings for first timers at Tuckahoe.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #102, Saturday, July 3, 2004

The final work session before show time (July 8-11) found "Sarge" Adams, Vince Iorio, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich present for a day of cleaning and tidying up.

The crew manfully accomplished its labors this day without doughnuts.

The crew mounted the countershaft for the F. E. Reed 14-inch swing, long-bed lathe to the rafters of the watch factory substructure. It took a good deal of time to install the assembly safely in proper alignment, with the result that the motor installation could not be completed. Hence, the lathe will not be in motion during the show.

We put some of our machine tool restoration talents to use for the Rural Life Museum in a new way, by cleaning for painting a cast-iron, coal-fired home water heater for the kitchen exhibit. Although it cannot be described as a machine tool, it was made of the same stuff, and was just as heavy!

At the end of the day, the exhibit wasn't quite ready, but the consensus was that the Thursday-morning show crew shouldn't have too much work to do. A contractor's cart and a rolling tool cabinet will have to be moved out of the exhibit, and a couple of work tables will have to be mounted outside. (Unfortunately, one of the work tables is currently covered with parts for the Rhodes shaper/slotter.)

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #101, Saturday, June 26, 2004

A good-sized crew, consisting of Pearson "Sarge" Adams, Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich pushed the machine tool restoration project a little bit farther toward completion. (Does anyone have any idea of what "completion" means in this context?)

A dozen assorted doughnuts made a brief appearance. (Some traditions die hard.)

As sharp-eyed readers have noted, we have occasion to welcome a new volunteer--"Sarge"--to the crew. Sarge is a machinist by trade and a coworker of Vince's. He has attended Tuckahoe's annual tractor and engine shows and has succumbed to the siren song of aged, oxidized iron. Welcome aboard, Sarge!

We enjoyed yet another day of heavy lifting, this time liberally assisted with the Tuckahoe forklift (crewed by Eric Harvey and Art Lyman). (An unnamed CAMS-er also took the forklift controls briefly. About this performance, the less said, the better.)

We swept out the container, then set about moving the machine tools not in line for restoration in the near future inside. Into the deep end went the short 14-inch swing F. E. Reed engine lathe, the small New Haven planer, the "no-name" surface grinder, the "Fluharty" lathe, and the overhead belt-driven buffer. They joined the Brown & Sharpe surface grinder and the Gould & Eberhardt shaper, roughly in the order in which we hope to restore them. We also moved a considerable number of pallet loads of small parts, restoration supplies, and tools. Included in this effort were two of the three contractor's carts that we use for tooling and electrical supplies storage. Miraculously, by the end of the day we had moved pretty much everything that we had wanted to get out of the museum to tidy up the place for Tuckahoe's annual show on July 8-11.

Inside the museum, the crew began tidying up the exhibit area, and moved some of the tools and supplies into the museum office/storeroom. Somehow they also managed to clean two or three parts for the Garvin milling machine. The Garvin was moved to the back wall beside the West Haven power hacksaw and the unrestored Brown & Sharpe tool grinder. We also moved the countershaft of the 24-inch swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye engine lathe to this area. Hopefully, these items will be out of the way while we demonstrate the Rockford planer during the show.

Special Supplement to Work Report #101

On another midweek trip to Tilghman Island, John Webb and Frank Rabbit removed and transported to Tuckahoe the motor and countershaft (and related overhead drive components) for the "Fluharty" lathe. The donor, Mr. Chris Faranetta, assisted in dismantling and loading the components from his shed on Tilghman Island.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #100, Saturday, June 19, 2004

The CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project's "centennial" work session was attended by Vince Iorio, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner (and grandson Jordan), John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich. Rather than observing the auspicious occasion with speeches, awards, ice cream, and various ceremonies, we put in another hot day of heavy lifting.

Again, our labors were fueled by a dozen assorted doughnuts and a bag of holes.

The sensible members of the crew--Jerry and Jordan--painted the column and knee of the Garvin horizontal milling machine. We want to evaluate some of the parts of this machine with some care before we attempt to reassemble it; hence it won't be ready in time for the annual show. It still looks pretty good in its fresh, new paint, though.

The crew members most lacking in good sense--we're talking about Vince, Dave, and Luther here--completed the hot-weather move of "stuff" from the container to the trailer. This entailed disassembling, moving, and reassembling the remaining two heavy shelving units, a task that was complicated by the fact that the shelving units were filled with pulleys and shaft hangars. Thankfully, we had assistance from Tuckahoer Eric Harvey on the forklift.

Special Supplement to Work Report #100

As members of the CAMS email list noted from a posting on June 14, Mr. Chris Faranetta, of Alexandria, Virginia, offered to donate an engine lathe of unknown manufacture from a shed on property that he had recently purchased on Tilghman Island. This lathe belonged to the late Charles James Fluharty, of Tilghman Island, who is said to have used it in his work designing and manufacturing many innovative pieces of oyster and crab harvesting equipment.

On a midweek trip to a site on Tilghman Island, John Webb and Mr. Faranetta loaded the lathe for a move to the machinery pavilion at the Tuckahoe grounds. The lathe is of 12- to 14-inch swing (currently equipped with riser blocks) and is about six feet long. (More detailed measurements pending.)

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #99, Saturday, June 12, 2004

A hot-weather crew, consisting of Pierre Huggins, Vince Iorio, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich, reported for a day of heavy lifting on the CAMS/Tuckahoe machine tool restoration project.

The group's labors were fueled by a dozen mixed doughnuts, plus a bag of holes. Arguably they weren't as necessary as they might have been on a cold day, but they did replenish a lot of calories that we burned on the job.

We finished preparing the storage trailer by installing the plywood vent panel where the refrigeration unit had previously been mounted. We then installed some built-in shelves at the front of the trailer (where there was a steel-angle rack left over from its previous life). These shelves are light-duty, so we used them for items such as wooden casting patterns donated by the Holland Manufacturing Co. factory in Baltimore.

Next, we set about unloading a great deal of small stuff (small in size, not in weight!) from the container. After a good deal of grunting, we managed to remove a couple of the heavy storage shelf units from the container and reassemble them in the trailer. By the end of the day, we had managed to transfer about half of the pulleys, line shaft and countershaft hangars, and other miscellaneous parts from the container to the trailer. We also attempted to organize materials that are to be disposed of (possibly during Tuckahoe's annual show July 8-11), items that may be brought out for restoration soon, and items that we want to keep, but don't need readily at hand.

Finally, Dave and Pierre braved not only the heat, but also a nest of hornets, to remove several dozen tack cans (also from the Holland Manufacturing Co.) that had been stored atop the container.

It was reported that no one had any difficulty sleeping that night.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #98, Saturday, June 5, 2004

The usual suspects--Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser--were on hand to tackle whatever came their way, including a dozen or so mixed doughnuts.

John McCalla and Dave worked on preparing the trailer body for application as a storage unit. When in service, the trailer had been equipped with a refrigeration unit mounted on a panel on its "nose". The refrigeration unit had been removed, so John and Dave took measurements and prepared a plywood panel to replace it. The panel is to be equipped with two vents. The two trailer hands also assembled some light shelving units. John Webb contributed to the trailer project by making up a string of lights (essential if you're doing heavy lifting in a dark place).

The "inside" group mixed and tested several shades of red paint on the accessory storage compartment door of the Garvin milling machine. The mill came to us in a circus-wagon scheme of red, yellow, and gray, but the current experiments were directed toward developing something a little more dignified. (The color the group ultimately settled on vaguely resembles a glossy Tuscan red.) In addition to the color essays, Jerry applied a coat of primer to the Garvin's knee.

Vince made a flanged sleeve to which Jerry will attach a laminated plywood cone pulley that he is making for a temporary working overhead drive for the long-bed, 14-inch swing F. E. Reed engine lathe. (The lathe was missing its original countershaft.) Because this is a temporary drive, we will be using some V-belt pulleys donated by Robert Vogel to take power from a one-horsepower motor mounted atop the exhibit ceiling (the old watch factory substructure). Vince mounted a couple of countershaft hangars from the Tuckahoe collection to a board to serve as the heart of the overhead drive.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #97, Saturday, May 29, 2004

Vince Iorio, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser reported for duty on the CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project.

There were no reports last week or this week from the field on doughnut consumption. Has the group truly reformed its ways?

Dave completed the painting of the Rhodes shaper/slotter parts (except for a couple of parts that John McCalla is working on in his home shop), and test fitted the parts on hand. The machine is reported to be ready for assembly.

Dave also returned an accumulation of machine tool name plates, manufacturer's plates, etc., that he had taken home for cleaning. They are arranged on a board as a trial essay in an exhibit mounting.

Frank and Jerry disassembled and cleaned the knee of the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. They then scraped the column of the mill and applied primer and body putty.

John Webb continued his work of sorting and filing the accumulation of nuts and bolts in the Tuckahoe fire house.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #96, Saturday, May 22, 2004

Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser kept up the good work of the CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project.

The crew put the immediate restoration project aside for a portion of the day and assisted other Tuckahoe volunteers in cleaning out the office of the Rural Life Museum. The two-room office has been significantly underutilized in its intended role, and has served largely as a storeroom. It is unlikely that the facility can ever escape the storage role completely, but good progress was made towards restoring much of the square footage to office use. This is good from our standpoint, because we are slowly accumulating a collection of work records, photographs, original and reprint trade literature, etc., that will benefit from having a clean, secure storage place away from the restoration work area.

Dave rounded up, organized, and laid out the parts of the Rhodes shaper/slotter on the metal work table preparatory to reassembling the machine. (John McCalla has the ram and a rack from the bottom of the ram in his home shop for some rehabilitation work.)

The crew received a treat in the form of a visit from George Cohen, one of our truest supporters and the donor of the big Rockford planer. George had a hankering to see what the crew (and the exhibit) looked like when everyone and everything wasn't spruced up for the annual show. George took the spindle back gear with the broken/missing teeth from the 24-inch swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye engine lathe to his shop, C. and L. Machining Co., Inc., in Brooklawn, New Jersey, to see if a new one can be made.

John Webb undertook the Herculean task of sorting a large accumulation of fasteners and filing them in storage drawers in the Tuckahoe fire house.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #95, Saturday, May 15, 2004

The crew of Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, and John Webb enjoyed yet another work session on the CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project.

In a nod toward clean living and clear thinking, no doughnuts were in evidence. The going was rough, but the crew managed to maintain its morale and get some things accomplished anyway.

The F. E. Reed lathe that was placed on rollers last week was rolled the length of the museum building to await transfer by forklift to the storage container. (The contents of the container need to be transferred to the new former Giant Food semi-trailer that Giant donated to the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association.) (Although the trailer is empty, it is not the optimum storage location for the machine tools. These ultimately will be more easily and safely stored in the container, the deck of which is closer to the ground and easier to access by forklift.)

John Webb, the group's electrical wizard, thrashed away (his phraseology) at the three-phase "dummy" motor and the electronics control box for the Rockford planer. John replaced some capacitors that needed to be upgraded for reliability. Repackaging everything inside the electrical box was difficult--it definitely is packed. In contrast to our efforts last year, the planer motor worked perfectly the first time the big red button was pushed.

John also brought his Kawasaki "Mule" all-terrain utility vehicle. Part people transporter, part mini-pickup truck, it eases a number of our transportation tasks.

The group removed the knee assembly from the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. They then moved the Garvin column outdoors (on the small concrete slab at the opposite end of the museum) for some concerted paint removal. They also cleaned the Garvin's table and power feed components.

As a final measure, the group made a concentrated effort to gather the various pieces of the several projects that have somehow gotten themselves started over the Winter. (The annual show is just around the corner in July!)

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #94, Saturday, May 8, 2004

The grimly determined crew of Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser maintained the momentum of the CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project.

The crew cleaned some more parts of the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. They also moved the Garvin out of the cluttered area that it has occupied for the last two or three years.

Later, the crew undertook preparations for another moving project by jacking and cribbing the short (but heavy) 14-inch swing F. E. Reed lathe onto rollers and starting it on its way out of the exhibit area. (Although this lathe was reputedly used in a local boatyard, and thus has an intimate Eastern Shore connection, it occupies a relatively low level of priority in the current restoration effort simply because we have enough lathes in the exhibit without it.) The unrestored West Haven power hacksaw, the unrestored Brown & Sharpe tool grinder, and the Garvin horizontal mill are slated to replace the Reed lathe along the back wall of the exhibit.

The crew removed right-hand headstock bearing from the 24" swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye engine lathe. Dick took it home for machining to correct for wear.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #93, Saturday, May 1, 2004

A crew of hard-core restorationists, consisting of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich, attempted to score a modest yardage gain on the machine tool restoration project.

An all-too-bountiful supply of doughnuts was again present, to the detriment of our once-svelte, boyish waistlines. There is a possibility that the crew may break with one of our strongest traditions and taper off somewhat on our doughnut consumption.

Dave took advantage of the hot, sunny day and applied glazing putty filler to the block of the Rhodes shaper/slotter. "Advantage" in the sense that the putty baked nicely in the sun. So did Dave.

We cleaned and did some mild rehabilitation work to some of the parts from the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. On something of an impulse, we removed the table and power feed linkage. We really didn't intend to undertake a major restoration of this machine this spring, but the spirit of the moment overcame us, and we got a little carried away.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #92, Saturday, April 17, 2004

Vince Iorio, John McCalla, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich formed the team for the 92nd work session of the CAMS/Tuckahoe machine tool restoration project.

We indulged in our usual doughnut pig-out. In consideration of the coming of warmer weather (and the reduced need for warmth-retaining layers of body fat), we cut back on the creme-filled varieties. It didn't really help our waistlines all that much, but it was a start.

No major projects were attempted. Instead we focused on more basic activities, such as further cleaning of the Rhodes shaper/slotter parts. Some of these parts, including the column, were given a coat of primer or paint. (The column merits a note on its construction. The machine, which dates from about the early 1920's, does not have the cast-iron column to which we are accustomed. Instead, the column is welded up from sections of heavy sheet steel or light steel plate. At first glance, it appears a little light, but apparently it worked.) In addition to the Rhodes parts, we also wire-brushed the rust from a double handful of old wrenches someone left after the show last July.

We also proceeded with our partial disassembly of the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. (It is unlikely that we will attempt to completely dismantle, clean, paint, and reassemble the machine before the annual show.) During this session, our principal accomplishment was removing the spindle/cone pulley assembly. We found that the spindle bearing nearest the table shows signs of serious wear on its inboard (cone pulley) side. It may be suitable for display and demonstrations, but will likely not be capable of working reliably and accurately on heavy work. Our tentative plan is to shelve any replacement or rehabilitation of this bearing until we complete a great deal more restoration work on this and other machines. (In other words, while we would like to have the Garvin's bearings in first-class order, such a sub-project is lower in priority than, for example, completing our restoration of the Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye 24" swing engine lathe.)

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #91, Saturday, April 3, 2004

The mildly abbreviated team of John McCalla, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich resumed work on the machine tool restoration project at the Tuckahoe Rural Life Museum.

Plenty of doughnuts were present; however some of them were inaccessible until after lunch because one team member hit upon a novel way to pace us in our doughnut consumption. (For reasons that would be perfectly obvious if you were the guilty party, we will say no more about this episode forever.)

The shop wiring project is finished! The last remaining length of cable was pulled from the rafters and connected to the Museum circuit breaker panel. We now have abundant 110-volt electrical service to the machine tool exhibit area without spinning a tangled web of extension cords.

Our accomplishments on the actual restoration work may be summed briefly: We cleaned some of the Rhodes shaper/slotter and Garvin horizontal milling machine parts. We also applied primer to some of the Rhodes parts.

In addition to restoration work, we started removing gears and other small parts from the incomplete Pratt & Whitney horizontal production milling machine that has languished for over a year under a tarp behind the museum building. The machine failed to find a buyer, or any interest, at the annual show last July, and it does not fit into the Tuckahoe collection. (We already have a Pratt & Whitney #10 horizontal production milling machine. One is enough.) Hence, with scrap prices at relatively high levels these days, the surplus machine is being readied for scraping. (For truly ambitious rebuilders, it isn't too late to claim the machine for your collection. Contact Dave Welser for details.)

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #90, Saturday, March 20, 2004

An enthusiastic work crew consisting of Vince Iorio, John McCalla, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich made yet more progress on the machine tool restoration project at the Tuckahoe Rural Life Museum.

Doughnuts were made available in quantities far greater than the size of the crew would warrant. At least two dozen assorted specimens, plus a bag of something (doughnut holes?) were in evidence. For once, we are not ashamed to confess that we were not equal to the task of consuming them all on the premises--several went home with us at the end of the day.

While no truly big projects were tackled, we did make considerable progress on a number of smaller tasks.

The electrical crew continued work on the shop wiring project, knocking off only when they exhausted our on-site supply of cable. Tuckahoe-er Tom Booze dropped off a fresh supply afterwards, so John Webb put in an additional workday laying out cable for pulling into place when we have a team on-site again.

An impromptu team took on the disassembly of the small Rhodes shaper/slotter. Dave and the Johns took pieces home to clean and prep for the next work session. Dave learned that the leadscrews (which need to be replaced) are 9/16" by 8 tpi--not a common size, in our experience. He and Vince plan to replace two of them them with more common 5/8" screws. One screw, however, drives a threaded boss on the side of the casting that will be more difficult to re-engineer. Needless to say, that screw is in worse condition than the other.

Dave believes that we are also missing a large gib of dimensions 8" by 1" by 1" (on the fat end). Does anyone out there in CAMS-land have a 5-gallon lard bucket filled with castoff gibs that they would allow responsible machine tool restorers cast an acquisitive eye over? How about a 5-gallon roofing cement bucket filled with shaper/slotter (or similar machine) lead screws?

Anyone who is unfamiliar with Rhodes shaper/slotters may view trade catalog pictures of the beast that Vince uploaded to:

or other illustrations and information at:

After expending great effort, we liberated the back gear from the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. This should have been an easy task, but as we were to learn, it was complicated by an unusual measure of doofusness on the part of an earlier operator. The heart of the back gear is an assembly of two spur gears (one small, one large) mounted close to permanently on the ends of a hollow tube. The assembly turns freely on a steel axle that may be swung about two pinned and keyed eccentrics to engage or disengage the back gears. The eccentrics turn in two brackets that are cast integrally with the machine column. After removing everything that could be removed (taper pins, woodruff keys, eccentrics, locking screw, and two oil hole plug screws), we found that the axle could not be readily removed from the gear assembly; i.e., it would go about nine inches out of the assembly, then stick fast. Complicating the removal was the fact that the gear and axle were trapped between the brackets, and we were afraid that too much force might break the brackets from the column (which would definitely NOT be good). Finally, we decided to marinate the assembly in penetrating oil and go for broke. Three of us took turns at hammering the axle (using a heavy brass punch, of course) until it came free. We discovered that the root problem was two hellish burrs that had been kicked up on the axle when an earlier operator had tightened the oil plug screws as if they were setscrews! (Possibly this also explains the pipe wrench marks in the gear tube.) Some remedial action may be in store for the bearing surfaces involved.

We also did a modest bit of housekeeping by cleaning some of our tool storage spaces. (In doing this, we made the happy discovery of a partial pack of Prince Albert cigarette papers hidden in the bottom of our small Gerstner tool chest.) We inventoried our drill bit racks and made arrangements to procure the small handful of bits that were missing.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #89, Saturday, February 14, 2004

A crew of the usual suspects--John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich--continued the machine tool restoration project at the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association's Rural Life Museum.

Although the weather was a little milder, we took no chances--doughnuts in some quantity were consumed in order to provide us with an adequate reservoir of caloric or phlogiston or whatever it is that keeps us going.

The major accomplishment of the session was the successful removal of the "driving" back gear from the headstock spindle of the 24-inch-swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye engine lathe. (Our faithful readers may note that we have flailed away unsuccessfully at this off and on for several work sessions.) John McCalla made a screw-type custom gear puller for this application that involved the use of one 10-pound barbell weight (unmodified) and one 10-pound barbell weight turned down into a ring. (Both weights were from his son's barbell set--hope Kevin wasn't relying on using the 10-pound weights in his personal physical culture program!) The puller also utilized a section of thick wall pipe supplied by Vince Iorio. John also machined a heavy one-inch-thread nut out of a special bronze alloy called "unmachineableum". So tough was this alloy that John only had time to machine two opposing flats for the end wrench to engage. (He has subsequently machined the end into a full hex.) Even with the custom puller it took three men and a lot of muscle power to wrench that gear out of the cone pulley. It was very HARD work requiring team work, and of course an extra doughnut!

Dave took the gear home to clean it thoroughly and evaluate our repair options.

The electrical crew decided to strengthen and improve the interior layout of the rolling electrical storage cart by adding some new shelves.

Speaking of flailing away, we succeeded in dismembering the remainder of the four-foot length of #80 roller chain (erroneously reported as #100 chain in our last report--it seemed a lot bigger when we were pounding on it) that we started work on during our last session. Our sense of victory was short-lived (nonexistant, in fact)--John Webb brought another 10 feet or so of the same chain. We broke it down into four shorter lengths and left it to soak in a bath of used motor oil until our next work session.

We attempted to put the small Excelsior drill press to application by drilling four 3/8" holes for casters in each corner of a three-layer plywood sandwich measuring about 24" by 30" by 1 1/2". Unfortunately, the Excelsior wasn't up to the task--the leather final drive pulley repeatedly popped off of its pulleys (probably a little too long). Rather than futz with the Excelsior, we moved the project to the larger 20" Barnes drill press. (We had operated this machine under power downfeed during the annual show back in July.) It took a while to adjust the machine and learn the sequence of steps to use the manual downfeed, but the Barnes nevertheless made relatively short work of the job. The finished product is to serve as a machinery-moving dolly.

Special Addendum to Work Report #89

The following account has been prepared by Special Guest Reporter John Webb to relate the progress he and Dave Welser made during a supplemental two-man work session on Saturday, February 21, 2004:

It's four weeks to spring, a mild day, and lots of work to do before the "big show" in July. The team of Welser and Webb took on the electrical department determined to finish up the wiring of the ol' watch shop. The goal was to complete the upper illumination loop and the lower motor power loop with a modest amount of extra outlets in order to avoid opening this can of worms any time soon.

Well, it's about 98 percent complete. All of the wire( armored BX) has been run and secured. Surface mount boxes with duplex outlets are installed near the ceiling so as to be mostly hidden from view. The power connections for the small motors replacing the conventional line shaft system of old is hidden from view as they are behind the wall. There is a small horizontal slot where the base board molding used to reside. The motor plugs are passed through this slot to the receptacles on the outside perimeter wall.

All of this is connected to dedicated circuits to be independent of the rest of the facility.

Only a few doughnuts were consumed until the stalwart of Tuckahoe (Bullet) appeared later in the afternoon.

Our next work session is scheduled for Saturday, March 20, 2004. form to begin with.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #88, Saturday, January 31, 2004

A hardy crew consisting of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich braved another frigid January day to press forward the work on the machine tool restoration project.

As is our wont, we fueled ourselves against the oppressive climate with a bountiful supply of doughnuts, two dozen all told, of a mixed variety, plus a bag of holes. At the end of the day, there were perhaps three left, plus a few holes.

The rolling contractor's cart that we painted during our last work session was loaded with electrical "stuff" and placed into service as our electrical supply cart.

Vince succeeded in belting up the small Rivett lathe and briefly testing it under power. With a little tweaking and tuning, we'll finally have a working lathe at Tuckahoe!

Other crew members continued their efforts on disassembling the 24-inch swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe. The apron, lead screw, and carriage drive rod were all successfully removed.

We painted the Rockford planer parts (for the cutting tool crossfeed mechanism) that had been primed during an earlier work session.

John Webb contributed a four-foot length of well-rusted former sawmill roller chain (#100). Two of the crew holding impeccable qualifications of strong backs and weak minds set about disassembling it in order to make the links available for use in our shop-made machinery "skates" project. By the day's end, following liberal application of penetrating oil, hammer, drift punch, and cold chisel, we had succeeded in undoing about one-half to two-thirds of the chain's pin links. (The roller links proved unsuitable for the project.) It was good, wholesome, manly fun, but we were still moved to wonder what the links would have cost us if we had just purchased them in unassembled form to begin with.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #87, Saturday, January 10, 2004

The machine tool restoration team of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich
braved a cold January morning to continue work on the project. (The
weather for our last work session was merely chilly--today was cold!)

A cold workday demands proper fuel, and we were well-provisioned.  We met a force of some two dozen doughnuts--Boston Cremes, Chocolate Cremes, cake-types, dunking sticks, and sweet rolls--and after a fierce hand-to-hand struggle, they were ours.

John McCalla had custom-fabricated a slide hammer to use to try to dislodge the small back gear from the spindle cone pulley of the Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe.  Despite our best efforts, the gear refused to budge. The need is clearly indicated for further research into methods for separating shrink-fit parts.

We had more success in removing the leadscrew from the Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe, and in preparing the apron for future removal.

The electrical crew (John Webb and John McCalla) completed their disassembly of the rotary phase converter capacitor box.  The capacitor array is made up of some oil-filled capacitors, plus an assortment of electrolytic caps of dubious ratings and vintage.  John McCalla will attempt to rework the mix so that only electrolytic capacitors of known ratings will be included.  It should cut down on the excitement factor of starting the Rockford planer, but it should
result in more consistently reliable operation, especially at show time.

The electrical crew also mounted an on-off switch to the column of the small Excelsior drill press.  (The lack of such a switch inhibited us from demonstrating this machine during our annual show this past July.)

We continued work on the third contractor's cart by ap plying primer to the metal parts, then "Dark Bronze" paint (just like the other two carts) to the body.  We also painted the external parts for the Rockford planer's crossfeed mechanism.

Vince mounted the countershaft for the Rivett lathe to the ceiling of the watch factory substructure, then mounted a motor and belt tensioner above the ceiling.  Only a little more grunting remains before we have our first operational lathe in the exhibit area.

We managed to remove two more parts from the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine:  the arbor (difficult to remove because it is apparently incorrect for the machine) and the spur gear mounted on the rear of the spindle that drives the power table feed (covered with shop gunk, but otherwise not difficult to remove).

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #86, Saturday, December 13, 2003

It was a chilly December morning that welcomed the machine tool restoration crew of Vince Iorio, Charles Keeney, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich.

For fuel against the chill, we consumed six Boston Creme, three chocolate creme, and three sugar-glazed doughnuts.

We started work on rebuilding the cross feed mechanism for the cutting head of the Rockford planer.  The machine's donor, George Cohen, had his shop, C. and L. Machining Co., Inc., in Brooklawn, New Jersey, machine a replacement harp-shaped clutch element to replace the broken original.  Hence, we disassembled the rest of the mechanism, did some cleaning, and applied primer to the external parts.

Some work on the spindle cone pulley for the Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe failed to separate the back gear from the rest of the pulley assembly.  Clearly, this will be more than a penetrating oil and hammer job.

We started rehabilitating (sanding and wire-brushing) the third of our rolling contractor's carts to serve as storage for electrical supplies.  This cart, the scruffiest of the three, was basically being used for junque storage.

Our electrical crew started disassembly of the rotary phase converter for the Rockford planer to determine what needs to be done to rebuild it for truly reliable operation.

Vince made the happy discovery that in a pile of shop literature that had been donated some time ago, we have original catalogs for our "new" Rhodes shaper/slotter, as well as for our "no-name" pedestal-type drill grinder.  (It is a "no-name" machine no more:  henceforth it shall be known as a Wilmarth and Morman Co. "New Yankee" Style "J" Point Grinder (capacity 3/32 to 1 1/4 inch drills).  (For the Terminally Curious:  The "Point" designation refers to the fact that it was designed and shipped with "...the extended spindle, point thinning wheel, tool rest, etc., for thinning the points of drills.")

We extended our lunch break for a field trip to Eric Harvey's (E R Harvey Metalworking) new shop facility on Black Dog Alley near Dover Road.  Eric still has a considerable amount of work to do to settle in properly, but he has some impressive machinery there--especially his overhead-belt-driven, heavy-duty metal brake.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #85, Saturday, November 22, 2003

The crew of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich convened another work session on the CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project at the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association's Rural Life Museum.

It wouldn't be an honest-to-Pete work session without doughnuts, so we did rough justice to a dozen mixed Boston Cremes and sugar glazeds.

We removed the back gear guards from the 24-inch-swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe.  We noted that the front spindle bearings gave evidence of some play.  (The exact extent is yet to be determined.)   More ominously, the "driving" back gear was found to have three teeth sheared off.  Because this gear abuts the small end of the spindle cone pulley, it will have to be removed from the assembly for repair.

John Webb continued work on the shop wiring project.

We ground some excess weld from the vicinity of one of the bushing bores in the overarm support bracket of the Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine.  The weld was evidently intended to fill an area from which a piece of cast iron had been broken.  The repair was to little avail--we discovered a crack in the weld itself.  We also freed the overarm shaft, which was stuck in place, largely with excess paint.  After a little head-scratching (and scraping away of accumulated crud), we removed the back gear guards.

Vince returned the countershaft for the small Rivett lathe from a rehab trip to his home shop.  He also brought a motor to power the lathe.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #84, Saturday, November 1, 2003

After a relatively long absence from the Rural Life Museum, Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich put in another session on the machine tool restoration project.

We slipped back into our old work habits with a dozen doughnuts, half Boston Cremes, half good old yeast-raised sugar-glazeds.

John Webb is spearheading a project to install more professional wiring in the exhibit area. Objectives will include installation of concealed overhead wiring for a number of "period" industrial light fixtures, inspecting and properly wiring our shop-built contrivances (a certain air compressor comes to mind), and cleaning up the jumble of extension cords that normally characterize our project. In furtherance of this effort, we did a considerable amount of crawling and scampering around the rafters and elsewhere to trace existing electrical outlets to the switches that control them.

We continued work on cleaning countershaft pulley assembly for the Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe. At the risk of seeming indecisive, we are not attacking these parts with our usual powered wire brushes. Overall, the countershaft parts are in good condition, with more of a patina than serious rust. In addition, the lathe appears to retain a good deal of what may be its original (green) paint. Because the machine has not been glopped over with an "aftermarket" circus wagon paint job, we may not strip and repaint it. We succeeded in locating the clutch shifter yoke, as well as a couple of other parts that had been missing for the last couple of work sessions or so. We also dismantled, cleaned, and reassembled the compound rest.

We disassembled and cleaned the overarm support casting for Garvin #13 1/2 horizontal milling machine. We probably will not undertake a complete restoration of this machine during this season, but we thought it would be a good idea to clean and paint the occasional odd part from it--it has been sitting unrestored in the middle of the exhibit area for three years now. Disassembly revealed that the dead center (the outboard part that steadies the arbor) has been abused and needs replacement or serious regrinding.

Dick worked further on his engineering analysis and calculations for the interim overhead structure for the Dietz, Schumacher, & Boye lathe countershaft and motor. Unlike the Smith and Mills shaper, and the Barnes drill press, the lathe must receive its drive from above. (The shape of the headstock casting does not permit a belt to enter from the rear or bottom.) The countershaft and motor will be quite heavy (at least 200-300 pounds), so a well-designed support structure is essential. (We learned that the structural steel that we were evaluating during our last work session is largely unavailable for the project, except for the 1 1/2 inch angle stock.)

Vince brought two drill press vises from the Tuckahoe collection that he had rehabilitated in his home shop. They may not be true to "period," strictly speaking, but they now work great, and they look good enough to please all but the most persnickety nitpickers.

Special addendum to Work Report #84:

On Saturday, November 8, John Webb returned for a solo work session that was evidently a productive one. He corrected the wiring on one of the shop-built air compressors. The compressor could use a better heat exchanger, but it is now serviceable.

John also rounded up the clutch assembly for the crossfeed of the Rockford planer and shipped them to the planer's donor, George Cohen. George had offered to use his foundry and machine shop facility to make a new harp (driven element) to replace the current one, which is broken in two places.

John also made considerable progress on wiring the shop for lights. This project is mostly done, except for final installation of three outlets and covers in their boxes. Future plans include separating the exhibit/work area lighting from the rest of the museum.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #83, Saturday, October 11, 2003

The team of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser pressed forward with the machine tool restoration project at the Tuckahoe Rural Life Museum.

The "big lathe" crew decided to set up the cone pulley from the 24-inch-swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe so that it might possibly be powered for cleaning; i.e., as the pulley revolves, appropriate abrasives or other cleaning materials are to be brought to bear against it. Toward that end, the countershaft was hoisted onto the table of the Rockford planer and made fast. Initial experiments were carried out by turning the pulley manually, but if this proves inadequate, the plan calls for the motor currently in use on the Barnes drill press to be belted to the lathe countershaft.

The "big lathe" crew also surveyed an accumulation of structural steel stored by the railroad tracks with an eye towards using several lengths of 6-inch "C" channel, some 6-inch by 6-inch I-beam, and some 2.5" steel angle to form the basis of a structure to support the motor and countershaft overhead to power the lathe for demonstrations.

Turning its attention to smaller matters, the team rescued a couple hundred pounds of small hardware--nuts, screws, and the like--from temporary outdoor storage to the Tuckahoe Fire House, where they will someday be dispensed into the parts cabinet there.

The team's lead electrician, John Webb, wired in the 220 volt outlet on the left side of the old "clock factory" wall. During the wiring project, one of the more agile workers discovered a "new" 110 volt outlet located above the exhibit. Efforts will be made to press it into service for shop lighting.

The "small drill press" crew inspected the Excelsior drill press with an eye toward devising an operator-friendly electrical switch for the unit. (The current method of turning the machine on by plugging it into the electrical outlet is too amateurish, even by our standards.)

The team undertook some sorely-needed housekeeping measures, including organizing the clamping furniture for the planer and milling machines, and vacuuming some of the chips we produced during the annual show back in July. (Earlier efforts at vacuuming were thwarted by a misplaced vacuum cleaner hose. Dave skirted this problem by bringing a vacuum cleaner from home to substitute for the aging, and currently incomplete, Tuckahoe shop vac.)

The team performed an evaluation of one of the small air compressors and was concerned about the safety of its air tank. A test pump is reported to be somewhere on the grounds at Tuckahoe. If so, it may be used to test the compressor tank. Additionally, it was reported that there may be some larger (and hopefully safer) tanks available.

Some flooring material that Dave brought on a non-regular work day was hoisted overhead for storage.

The team noted some mold growing on some of the flat belts and other organic surfaces. Plans are underway to use the on-site dehumidifiers more aggressively.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #82, Saturday, August 16, 2003

It was a small crew, consisting of Dick McBirney, Jerry Tuwiner, and Luther Dietrich (with occasional cameo appearances of Dave Welser, who was working elsewhere on the grounds), that attempted to overcome a month's worth of lethargy and regain momentum on the machine tool restoration project.

We knew in advance that we were going to muster a small crew, so we mustered a small stock of doughnuts--four Boston Kremes and two Chocolate Kremes. Needless to say, they disappeared quickly.

This work session was conducted under what proved to be unusual circumstances; i.e., during the annual Talbot County Dog Show, which was held on the Tuckahoe show grounds. To our mild surprise, the participants of the dog show covered the grounds even more effectively than the exhibitors at the annual engine show. As a consequence, our mobility was slightly reduced, especially in the morning.

During the process of moving our toolboxes, carts, etc., back into place, a caster buckled on our red rolling toolbox. Fortunately, the box did not topple over, but we had to spend the greater part of an hour making a repair.

We had done a fair job of tidying up the exhibit area at the end of the engine show in July, but a little more housekeeping remained to be accomplished. We removed the workpieces that had been set up for demonstrations in the Rockford planer and the Barnes drill press, along with the associated clamping furniture. Efforts to thoroughly clean the cast iron chips from the planer table were thwarted by our inability to locate the hose for the shop vacuum cleaner. (We know--in the good old days, they didn't use vacuum cleaners for such purposes.) We also cleaned the John T. Burr & Son portable keyseat cutter before storing it in the combination storage box/display pedestal that Jerry had made for it.

Dick removed the ratchet wheel advance assembly from the Smith & Mills shaper table feed mechanism. The assembly had performed somewhat erratically during the show, when we were calling on it to advance the ratchet wheel one notch at a time. Dick plans to reason with it in his home shop and remove some offending play from the linkage.

Although we have not formally selected a major restoration project for the new season, we assumed that the 24-inch swing Dietz, Schumacher, & Boye lathe would be a prime contender, so we made a tentative beginning at restoring the countershaft. We started by making several "before" photographs. (Experience has taught us that we can't have too many of them.) We then cleaned the ends of the shaft enough to permit each of the bearings to be removed in turn to allow internal inspection. We were happy to discover that the oil channels in each bearing were free and clear--a marked contrast with what we have found in other bearings over the last three years. We were also pleased to note that there was no abnormal wear on the shafts where they had run in the bearings. This countershaft uses a clutch to engage forward, neutral, and reverse. Because this was the first countershaft we have encountered at Tuckahoe with this arrangement, we proceeded to hand-clean the components somewhat gingerly, testing the ease with which the clutch performed at each step. We did not attempt complete disassembly of the countershaft during this session.

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #81, Thursday, July 10, through Sunday, July 13, 2003

The CAMS/Tuckahoe machine tool restoration team put in an action-packed four days staffing the machine tool exhibit during the 30th annual show of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association. A total of eight volunteers were present: Dick McBirney (all four days!); John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser (Thursday through Saturday); and Vince Iorio and Luther Dietrich (Saturday and Sunday). In addition, we had some help from our fellow CAMS-ers. Steve Stallings transported to the site a compound feed handle for one of the F. E. Reed lathes for which Tex Rubinowitz had made a new waisted crank handle (to replace one that was missing). Fred Shirrmacher and Steve Barmash rendered invaluable assistance in helping to fit a gear guard to the Champion Blower & Forge post drill press. An encouraging number of other CAMS-ers paid us a visit, often with spouses, parents, children, grandchildren, in-laws, and friends in tow.

This year the exhibit received an unprecedented publicity blitz. The tabloid-sized insert printed by the Easton Star-Democrat, and distributed as a guide to the show, featured a half-page article on the restoration project on the front page. In addition, announcements were made on the public address system urging folks to visit the machine tool exhibit. They did--so many that we were unable to keep count. We handed out over 300 of the flyers that we had prepared telling about CAMS and the restoration project, but we know that quite a few visitors missed receiving a flyer at times because we were all busy demonstrating the machinery. (Several visitors made repeat visits to the exhibit.)

We were actually making chips with four machines: the Smith & Mills shaper, the Rockford planer, the W. F. & J. Barnes drill press, and the John T. Burr and Son hand-cranked portable keyway cutter. We also had the Pratt & Whitney #10 horizontal milling machine turning, but without a workpiece mounted. We had hoped to have the Excelsior drill press running, but were not able to do so because we have not yet fitted an on-off switch. (Turning the machine on by plugging it in to the electrical outlet generates a certain level of excitement, but it is not something you would want to do in front of company very often. We did fire it up once on Sunday afternoon, more for our edification than for the viewing public's.)

One of the more gratifying facets of demonstrating our machinery before the public is that the educational aspect of the process works in both directions. Several attendees offered pointers on how to improve our machining or general shop techniques (Goodness knows we need all the help that we can get!), and quite a few shared their reminisces about seeing in operation or using machine tools like ours. (We were particularly surprised by the number of people who had seen portable keyway cutters in action.) Although we have no way of keeping records of such things, we could swear that we were Kodaked and videotaped far more than during past shows.

Although all of the machines performed before an appreciative audience, probably the most dramatic of the lot was the Rockford planer. The multi-step starting process brought the big Fairbanks-Morse five-horsepower motor to life with a roar like the forge fan of Hell. The belts squealed mightily as they were automatically shifted to change table direction, and the drive train made appropriate mechanical noise as the table moved back and forth. It pretty well captured the attention of everyone in the museum when we operated it.

It wouldn't truly be a show if we didn't acquire at least one new piece of equipment--this year Robert Hunteman of Annapolis donated a Rhodes Manufacturing Co. belt-driven vertical slotter. Mr. Hunteman also claims to have a line on a belt-driven vertical milling machine (probably a production machine, from the description we were given). His shop is close to Vince's home, so Vince volunteered to check it out.

Before we left the show grounds on Sunday, we moved most of the materials that had been moved outside back into the Rural Life Museum building. This included the rolling plywood tool carts, the New Haven planer, and the tool cutter-grinder. We still have some more things to move back to the exhibit area to re-establish our workplace for the next restoration season, but at least most of the heavy tugging and shoving has been done.

As a final note, no doughnuts are known to have been consumed on the premises by any of the machine tool restoration crew (although at least one of our spouses did make some available). The normal show fare (especially the plump ice cream sandwiches) seems to have kept our sugar lust at bay.

We worked hard before and during the show, so now we're going to relax hard. No date has yet been set for our next work session. To be advised of that date when it is set, please contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #80, Saturday, July 5, 2003

The heat and pressure were on as the machine tool restoration crew of Vince Iorio, Frank Rabbit, Ed Smigocki, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich gathered for the last regular work session before the annual show of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association.

We started the day with the usual and customary assortment of doughnuts. The pressures of the occasion apparently took their toll on our consumption, as there were several of the pastries left over at the end of the day.

We took a couple of opportunities to conduct proving runs on the Rockford planer, once with only the restoration crew present, and once, feeling cocky, with a general audience of other Tuckahoe workers. It helps to spin the large drive pulley manually when the motor is initially engaged, but the machine soon roars to life and powers its table forward (slowly) and backward (quickly). Watching the big machine run after the months of hard work that the crew has put in is, in the words of more than one crew member, "Awesome."

A motor mount has been devised for the Excelsior drill press and it was placed under power for the first time. The motor powers the lower cone pulley through spur gears, motion is transferred by a simple flat belt from the lower cone pulley to the upper cone pulley, then another flat belt transfers motion from the upper cone pulley shaft over a pair of bend pulleys to a pulley on the spindle. That is a considerable amount of monkey motion for a small drill press! Yet to be accomplished is the installation of an on-off switch.

We mounted the electric motor that will power the W. F. & J. Barnes drill press to a nearby timber post with lag screws and load binding straps. We also cut a belt for the primary drive, but were missing the belt joiner for completing the joint. (The joint should be completed before or during the early part of the show.)

We prioritized our arrangements for moving tool carts, etc., out of the museum for the four-day show. Some of the tools and supplies have been moved inside the museum office. Others are to be moved onto a temporary plywood-and-pallet "pad" just outside the back door of the museum. Others may be moved to the small concrete apron outside the garage door at the end of the museum opposite the machine tool exhibit. All carts, machine tools, containers, etc., that are to be stored outside will be covered with tarpaulins during the show.

We had a look at the tabloid-sized newspaper insert that forms the show directory given to attendees and were pleased to note that a write-up of the machine tool restoration project occupies half of the front page. Hopefully, that will encourage more visitors to seek out our exhibit.

The 30th annual show of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association will take place from Thursday, July 10, through Sunday, July 13, at the Association's show grounds about five miles north of Easton, Maryland, on U.S. Route 50. There are still ample opportunities for volunteers to help out during the show. For more information, please contact Vince Iorio at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #79, Saturday, June 28, 2003

Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich held yet another machine tool restoration project work session in the Rural Life Museum of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association near Easton, Maryland.

In the absence of regular doughnut provider Dave Welser, the group had to make do with one dozen creme-filled specimens. Fortunately, the intensity with which the crew worked acted to reduce doughnut consumption--there were actually two or three left at day's end.

John McCalla brought components that he had been working on to build a rotary phase converter based on a 7.5 horsepower three-phase motor. He and John Webb worked for the better part of the day to wire and assemble the device. At the end of the day, the device did not function satisfactorily (i.e., the motor turned, but too slowly). Subsequently, Frank sought trouble-shooting assistance from Jamie Hall, one of Tuckahoe's near-resident electricians. We have been told that the unit was lacking startup capacitors. Jamie patched some in temporarily to get the converter running until he could install permanent ones on Thursday.

When we arrived, we found that Frank had removed the temporary cribbing from beneath the Rockford planer and had used a railroad jack to lower the machine onto polyurethane isolator blocks. The blocks are a neutral gray in color, so there is no "culture clash" between early 20th century machine tool technology and early 21st century plastics technology.

Vince, Jerry, and Frank installed new belting on the Rockford planer (six-ply fiber) and the Excelsior drill press (leather). Vince brought a Clipper lacing clamp, that, when mounted in the vise, permitted us to install metal lacing (resembling a series of staples) to connect the two ends of each belt.

We completed the assembly of the final small parts on to the "no-name" drill grinder. During the afternoon, Bill Engle, the machine's donor, stopped by to visit. He seemed pleased with our progress to date. We still need to undertake some research to determine if the machine originally had an adjustable idler pulley or other means of disconnecting power from the spindle.

Dave Welser had reported that he believes he is close to closing a deal for our remaining unsold inventory of tack cans donated by the Holland Manufacturing Co. Accordingly, we culled out twenty cans from the pile to assure that we would have a supply of cans for our future storage needs.

Vince reports that attempts to ream the repaired (by welding) clapper for the Smith and Mills shaper have met with frustration due to differences in hardness in the weld material and the cast iron body. He plans to bore out the hole, press in a bushing, and ream to fit. Vince is also working to fabricate motor mounts for both the Excelsior and Barnes drill presses. (The mount for the Barnes is to incorporate a step-down pulley arrangement.)

As the foregoing indicates, we are getting close to the wire (show time) with much remaining to do. Some of the crew plans to have a work session on Thursday, July 3. There will be a regular Saturday work session on July 5. The Saturday session offers us an opportunity to express our creativity in yet another fashion--the Tuckahoe ladies who have been preparing the communal lunches for the past several Saturdays have decreed July 5 to be "covered dish day." It will be interesting to see what the CAMS crew comes up with. (Shades of Steve Stallings' machine tool yard sales!) For further information on our work sessions, or on the annual show, please contact Vince at:

Special Addendum: Dave Welser reports that he, John Webb, and Frank Rabbit turned out for a long work session on Thursday, July 3. With some electrical trouble shooting help from Jamie Hall, they were successful in getting the Rockford planer to run. We were told that the sight was impressive!

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #78, Saturday, June 21, 2003

The work team of Vince Iorio, Eric Stefan, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich reported for duty on the machine tool restoration project.

As usual, our labors were fueled by a bountiful supply of doughnuts, mostly creme-filled.

Frank Rabbit and John Webb came on Thursday, June 19, and removed the old timber skids from under the Rockford planer. They left the machine supported by timber blocking about six inches off the floor in anticipation of its receiving polyurethane isolator mounts (to be fabricated and installed by Frank).

Frank adjusted the shift arms in the linkage for table travel direction of the Rockford planer and replaced a broken oiler tube on the shift arm actuator pivot shaft. He discovered that a retractable pin to block the linkage in the neutral position has been sheared, and that its pin hole is badly worn. (He has a plan for its repair.) The team discovered that the keyseat in the driveshaft and the keyway in the aluminum driven pulley are slightly worn, allowing approximately 1/8 inch of play between the shaft and pulley. Working in his home shop, John made an oversize key (which needs to be hand-fitted) to remedy the problem.

John wired controls for the Rockford planer consisting of a start-stop switch mounted inside one of the upright supports for the motor and a remote on-off switch for the operator mounted on the outside of the upright nearest the operator position. John wired the connection from the start-stop switchbox to the motor and to the on-off switch, leaving the magnetic contactor to be installed in the switchbox. All wiring for the planer is shielded in BX cable. The unit is awaiting delivery of a rotary phase converter (under construction by John McCalla). Electricity for the planer is to be carried through a 60-amp disconnect switch for 220 volt/single phase current. There is one outlet wired to this switch. The 12-gauge 220 volt/single phase wiring that was installed earlier will not be used for the planer, but will be made available for the smaller machine tools.

We assembled most of the parts to the "no-name" pedestal-type drill grinder. We have subsequently received a batch of "before" photos from the film processor. Locations for the remaining parts have been determined, so that completion of assembly should be a very short project during the next work session. (This experience has left us believers in the value of  "before" photos.)

Vince brought a spur gear, of composite material, for the motor shaft to be used to power the Excelsior drill press. The hole in the gear is too large for the shaft, so an adapter will need to be made. Vince also procured some belting for the Excelsior drill press, as well as some clipper lacing for all of the belt driven machinery. (Some questions had been raised about the alligator lacing we were thinking about using.)

There is a great deal of work yet to be done before the annual show on July 10-13, with abundant volunteer opportunities. We will be meeting for work sessions on Saturday, June 28, Saturday, July 5, and probably on Thursdays (or other weekdays). For information on Saturday work sessions, please contact Vince at: For information on weekday work sessions, please contact Dave at: welserda@WORLDNET.ATT.NET

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #77, Saturday, June 14, 2003

A work crew consisting of Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich gathered for another productive session on the machine tool restoration project.

Doughnuts of several varieties (including at least three different types of cream-filled ones!) were once again on hand in some quantities. There were several remaining at the end of the day, despite the fact that we have come to rely on our doughnut supply for breakfast, mid-morning snacks, pre-lunch appetizers, and afternoon snacks on Tuckahoe Saturdays.

The June weather was hot and sticky, but the rain held off until late afternoon, allowing us to do some grinding, parts cleaning, and painting outside. Jerry took on the roughest task, using an angle grinder to reduce the excess welded material on the table from the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press. The replacement material that had been welded into the holes on the table was truly hard and nasty. Jerry's careful work brought the table back close to its original dimensions, although it could still benefit from surface grinding or other finish machining.

There was concern that the 220-volt electrical line was not capable of handling enough amperage to permit the planer motor to power any serious cuts, so the crew ran a second 220-volt line to the exhibit area, this one with 8-gauge wire, capable of 40 amps. This wire needs to be connected to a switch box and outlets.

Vince brought a stock of six-ply, fabric-based belting for the Rockford planer. When we have the electrical issues resolved, we will be able to belt up the machine for operation.

We connected a 1-horsepower motor to the Barnes drill press, applied oil to all the bearings, and gave the machine a test run. After resolving a few issues of belt alignment, we were rewarded with the sight of the spindle turning after who knows how many years. The primary drive belt we used was of cracked, well-worn, fabric composition of some antiquity. The resistance it offered the hard rubber drive pulley on the motor shaft produced a burning rubber smell that was distinctly unpleasant. We will almost certainly have to come up with a replacement belt or pulley by show time.

We finished cleaning and preparing for painting all of the parts on hand for the "no-name" pedestal drill grinder. (Dave had taken all of the parts that actually carry the drill bit during grinding to his home shop for cleaning and painting. He returned them finished and ready for application.) We painted all of the parts pertaining to the column and final drive. The unit should be ready for assembly during our next work session, after which it will be placed on static display. In the meantime, we are attempting to learn more about these grinders. There is an illustration (with some significant details obscured) of a Worcester brand drill grinder in the Lindsay Publications reprint of the 1890's Chas A. Strelinger & Co. tool catalog, but we have not yet succeeded in coming up with any other source material. Does anyone out there have any information (especially illustrations) of overhead-belt-driven, pedestal-type (i.e., floor mounted) drill bit grinders that you would consider sharing with us?

Vince had undertaken some preliminary work towards cleaning up the repaired cast iron clapper for the Smith and Mills shaper. He reports that the filler material, while hard, is not in quite the same league as that of the Barnes drill press table. He is attempting to finish reaming the taper pin hole in the clapper and clapper box in his home shop.

Towards the end of the day, we started to remove the old timbers that the feet of the Rockford planer were lag-screwed to. In fairly short order, we became concerned that we were about to paint ourselves into a corner, i.e., we were in danger of taking out the easy-to-remove timbers first, while leaving critical, harder-to-remove ones in place. Because our thinking abilities were not at their peak, we decided to defer action on this project until our next work session.

It bears repeating that the time is drawing near for the annual show of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association on July 10-13. This is our primary "meet the public" event, and one for which a good deal of work remains to be done. We would like to encourage prospective volunteers to come forward during the next three Saturdays (June 21 and 28, and July 5) and be part of this effort. We would also welcome volunteer participation during the show itself. The machine tool exhibit receives a refreshingly high rate of visitation, and we would be happy to welcome additional "meeters and greeters" to our ranks. For additional information, please contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #76(a), (b), and (c), Thursday, June 5, Saturday, June 7, and Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Work Report #76(a): John Webb and Dave Welser formed an extremely abbreviated work crew for another Thursday session on the machine tool restoration project. Dave delivered some lumber for mounting a motor to the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press. We still have to settle on a final site within the exhibit area for the Barnes for the annual show, so no work was undertaken towards constructing a mount. (The location of the drill press will determine where the motor should be mounted. Since we don't have overhead lineshafting--yet--we will probably mount the motor on an elevated bench to be secured to 2x6 boards placed under the column base casting. The mounting scheme will be similar to what we have done for the Smith and Mills shaper, except for the need to elevate the motor so that the belt will run properly through the belt shifter of the drill press.) John and Dave also noted some places on the Barnes drill press that would benefit from having some spacers installed. (When we disassembled the machine, we noted that spacers and shims of various sorts were used to modify the fit of some parts. We chose not to save some of them because we assumed that in the restoration process, some of the relationships between reassembled parts would be altered slightly. In this, we were partly right and partly wrong. The relationships were indeed altered--some parts now fit more loosely than ever.) One critical area that calls out for shims is the catch that secures the manual downfeed lever. Improving the action of the catch will confer the dual benefits of keeping John from being clobbered every time he works on the machine, while improving the alignment of the downfeed drive gears.

John did some additional work to the 220 volt wiring that is being installed in the exhibit area. He also corralled some of our miscellaneous supplies and organized them. (This is a task that we do not undertake nearly often enough. Thanks, John!)

The Thursday crew applied primer to the column of the "no-name" drill bit grinder that had been cleaned the previous Saturday. Dave experienced difficulty in sanding the cheap (one dollar per 11-ounce can) rattlecan primer that we were using. Further experimentation with this product may be in order.

We note in passing that John and Dave plunged into their work session without laying in a supply of doughnuts. And they wonder why more workers don't turn out to join them!

Work Report #76(b): Saturday found Vince Iorio, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich present with approximately two dozen doughnuts on hand. (We say approximately because the two respective Providers of Pastries started out with two dozen, but some of the plump little critters seem not to have made it all the way to Tuckahoe.)

The weather for Saturday was seriously soggy. Rain fell nearly constantly, varying in its intensity from heavy to torrential. As a result, we were limited in the amount of "dirty" work (outside cleaning of parts and painting) that we were able to do.

The more electrical-minded crew members put the finishing touches to the 220-volt wiring project. Now we only need to mount and connect the motor (probably through a rotary phase converter) and activate the circuit. We did manage to paint the five-horsepower motor for the Rockford planer as well as a smaller motor that may power the Barnes drill press.

We continued our work of fine-tuning some of the parts on the Barnes, and on the drill bit grinder. Vince reported that he had ordered drive belt material for the planer and the Barnes. Pierre Huggins is working offsite to develop a lubrication chart for the Barnes. (It would be a good idea to have one of these for each of the machine tools.)

The "heavy lifting" project of the day consisted of moving several carts and pallets of parts and tools from the exhibit area to the opposite end of the building (the end with the garage door), so that they could be quickly moved outside temporarily to clear the aisleways of the Rural Life Museum during the visit of the Talbot County Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday, June 11.

Work Report #76(c): Dave reports that Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and he moved the parts and tools outside the building for the Chamber of Commerce visit, and that all went well. Afterwards, the crew moved everything back inside and restored the place to its previous work-in-progress ambience. The only hitch came when they attempted to move the palletized New Haven shaper back inside and it caught on the door lip, causing the team leader to seek supplementary muscle power from a couple of Tuckahoe regulars.

We will continue to meet every Saturday from now through the annual show weekend of July 10-13, and we will probably attempt to have more Thursday (or other weekday) work sessions as well. Prospective volunteers wishing to participate on weekdays are urged strongly to contact Dave beforehand at: All others should contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #75, Saturday, May 31, 2003

This Saturday's work crew, consisting of John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Ed Smigocki, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich, moved the machine tool restoration project forward yet another increment.

Unfortunately three of our crew were afflicted with back problems (not arising from the restoration project). We hope that Dave Welser, Tuckahoe-er Art Lyman, and Frank Rabbitt experience rapid healing. On a positive note, we were very pleased to have John Webb return to the crew after having been in the hospital several days recently with a bad infection.

Apparently we had anticipated a larger turnout--doughnuts were available in such prolific abundance that it took two days for some of us to return to our pre-work-session weights.

Several of the crew made significant progress towards completing the 220-volt electrical connection that was started during our last work session on May 24. They routed the cable that had been run to the exhibit area into a switch box on the back wall (just behind the "watch factory" wall) with an outlet just below the switch box, and another connection in the rafters above the Rockford planer. In connection with this effort, John Webb cleaned and primed a number of "period" electrical boxes.

John McCalla brought a three-phase, three-horsepower motor to serve as a backup motor in case the original five-horsepower planer motor does not function properly. Art Lyman ran a simple ohms check on the five-horsepower motor, and it tested as being fine. He promised to bring a larger three-phase motor next week that we can use as a rotary phase converter to drive this original motor. John McCalla prepped the five-horsepower motor for painting and applied a primer coat. It should be ready to receive a finish coat of black at the next work session.

Ed cleaned and reassembled the tailstock on the 24-inch swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe. The handwheel in particular received major rust removal and cleaning.

We disassembled the column, including the spindle and intermediate drive pulley and shaft, for the "no-name" belt-driven drill bit grinder that Tuckahoe-er Bill Engle had donated. (See Work Report #73, Saturday, May 17.) Because we have several drill presses (four, at last count) of varying sizes, we decided that it would be a good idea to have a proper sharpener to exhibit with them. We also stripped the old paint and shop grime from the column. While there appear to be a few pieces missing, it should still work up into a presentable and usable tool. (To give an idea of scale, the column stands about four feet high and weighs roughly a hundred pounds.)

We were happy to receive two cast iron machine tool components that Tuckahoe-er Eric Harvey had repaired by welding--the clapper for the Smith and Mills shaper, and the back gear shift lever for the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press. (Eric also delivered the table for the Barnes a couple of days after the Saturday work session. The holes have been filled; yet to be done is final machining.) After some grinding, reaming, and painting, these parts will allow us to completely assemble these machine tools, hopefully in time for the July 10-13 annual show of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association. More information about the show may be found at the Association's website at:

Several of the machine tool restoration crew have resolved to attempt another Thursday work session on June 5. For more information, please contact Dave Welser at: welserda@WORLDNET.ATT.NET The next Saturday work session will be on June 7. For more information, please contact Vince Iorio at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #74, Saturday, May 24, 2003

Another work session on the Machine Tool Restoration Project was fully staffed, this time by Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, Frank Rabbit, Ed Smigocki, Eric Stefan, Jerry Tuwiner, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich.

The hoped-for work session on Thursday, May 22, failed to materialize, no doubt because the crew that manned the initial Thursday session the week before quickly established an unfortunate reputation of attempting a work session without doughnuts. We did not make that mistake on Saturday; numerous plump, meaty specimens of four varieties were duly consumed.

For most of the day the team labored under simulated 19th-century lighting conditions. Electrical service to the building was disrupted to allow Tuckahoer Tom Booze to revamp some of the main lines to the buildings on the show grounds. CAMS crewmembers Dave and Eric ran a 220 bx line inside the museum from the panel to the area where the planer is so that we will have 30 amps of juice to run any of our bigger machines, or several of the smaller machines simultaneously. During the period of darkness, we used an extension cord from Tuckahoe's "fire station" to supply electricity for a number of drop lights. That lighting was supplemented with natural illumination from the nearby doorway. (But not all that much natural illumination--it was a cloudy, rainy day.) The low lighting level moved Dave to join the Tuckahoe crew for a portion of the day to help repair some snow damage to the roof that the machinery pavilion suffered this past winter.

We made more progress towards fitting, lubricating, and fine-tuning the components of the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press, especially the lever assembly that controls both the power and manual downfeed. A bit more tuning and shimming will be necessary before we will be happy with the machine's operation, but it is beginning to look like our goal of having the Barnes operational by the annual show on July 10-13 will be realized. We are also evaluating a 1/3 horsepower motor for possibly powering the small Excelsior drill press. That machine will need to have a fiber spur gear (which we do not currently have) fitted to the motor, so it may not be serviceable in time for the show.

We also started reassembling the oilers to the Rockford planer. (Each oiler consists of a brass oil cup with hinged cap, plus a 1/4" NPT street ell.) We met with limited success because we failed to bring some pipe dope or Teflon tape to the work session. Hopefully, we'll be better prepared next time.

Dave, who also serves on the Board of Directors of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association, reports that the Association will host the Easton Chamber of Commerce for a tour on Wednesday, June 11, 2003. We will need to have our end of the Rural Life Museum building reasonably presentable for this event, so it is likely that some team members will be recruited to work that Wednesday, possibly to clear our tools, supplies, etc., from the area before the tour and return them afterwards. Dave (email address below) will spearhead this project.

Our next regular work session is scheduled for Saturday, May 31, 2003. For information on Saturday work sessions, please contact Vince at: We may also try to rebuild our momentum for Thursday work sessions, depending on crew member availability. For information on Thursday work sessions, please contact Dave at: welserda@WORLDNET.ATT.NET

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #73(a) and (b), Thursday, May 15, and Saturday, May 17, 2003

Work Report #73(a): A work crew consisting of Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Dave Welser held the first (provisional) Thursday work session of the machine tool restoration project. That this crew was grimly determined to hunker down and do good is evidenced by the fact that the members labored sans doughnuts!

The crew reassembled the Barnes drill press almost completely. For the most part, the only major components not assembled are the device that engages the power downfeed shaft, the back gear shift lever, and the table. (These last two items are currently in the possession of Eric Harvey for rehabilitation.)

After lunch the crew made a field trip to the Harvey metalworking shop in Easton and helped Hans Wendt with the new stack for the Frick Eclipse engine (the same engine that moved the 24-inch swing Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe as we related in Work Report #71). We also picked up a gear for the Champion Forge and Blower Co. post drill table that Eric had added some material to so we can re-cut it. John has that item and the big handle for the drill press which he will work on at home.

The crew felt that the first Thursday work session was so successful that they want to do some more, starting on Thursday, May 22. For more information, please contact Dave at: welserda@WORLDNET.ATT.NET

Work Report #73(b): While the Saturday work crew (consisting of Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Ed Smigocki, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich), were duly impressed with the progress the Thursday crew had made, the members were not about to be stampeded into abandoning their well-established, successful work habits. Accordingly, four varieties of doughnuts were consumed in our customary, team-building rituals.

We devoted a good deal of our attention to fine-tuning the various components of the Barnes drill press. With luck, this machine will be under power for the annual show. John Webb did a great job of rehabilitating the broken spindle downfeed handle. We located and installed the speed control belts. (They are well-used but are probably serviceable for demonstration purposes.)

John Webb also re-cut a number of teeth on the table elevating gear for the Champion Forge and Blower Co. post drill.

We reviewed the current state of the Rockford planer to determine if it was within the realm of possibility to have the machine up and running in time for the annual show in July. We determined that we have a shot at this goal (although perhaps not with working cross-feed for the cutting head), if we have a functional motor. As a preliminary step in assessing the condition of the 3-phase Fairbanks Morse motor that came with the machine, we carted it outside for cleaning. Hopefully, at our next session we will be in a position to test it. If it is functional, we will have to have a line for 220-volt AC power run from the museum's electrical service box to the exhibit area.

Around mid-afternoon, Tuckahoe-er Bill Engle came by with two contributions for the collection or for sale at the show: (1) a floor-mounted drill bit grinder of uncertain manufacturer (it may have been originally belt-driven), and (2) a five-inch Pratt & Whitney horizontal production milling machine. The drill bit grinder was unloaded and temporarily stored inside the museum. Art Lyman brought up the Tuckahoe forklift and unloaded the milling machine. He positioned it on timbers behind the museum, where we applied preservative and covered it with a tarp.

The next Saturday work session is scheduled for May 23. At some danger of growing tedious, we repeat that new volunteers are always welcome to join us. How welcome? Let us know your favorite doughnut flavor, and we'll do our best to provide some. For more information about the project, please contact Vince Iorio at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #72, Saturday, May 10, 2003

A good-sized crew consisting of Frank Rabbit, Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich continued work on the machine tool restoration project.

With both Virginia- and Maryland-sourced doughnuts available, participants maintained their customary high level of consumption.

Most of the day's activity was centered on the Rockford planer. First, the crew cleaned and lubricated the gear train that drives the table. Then we checked the way oilers for clearance and spring tension. (Readers with an agricultural background may wish to note that these oilers are similar in shape and function to hog oilers, although they are considerably smaller.) Next we applied way oil to the ways. Finally, using a heavier chain that Dave had procured, as well as Dave's engine hoist, we hoisted and installed the table back on the bed. This hoisting was actually a multistep process. First, we had to lift the table free of its wooden "rotisserie" cradle onto cribbing. We then had to position the lifting chain on the table's trunnions. (The trunnions could not be used for the initial lift because the table was resting on them in the "rotisserie".) With the chain repositioned, we lifted the table again and swung it over the bed. With the table positioned about halfway onto the bed, we removed the chains and shoved the table home, taking care to properly engage the bull gear and table rack. (Actually, we were able to turn the bull gear manually to help move the table into final position.)

We also did some exterior cleaning of the large Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye engine lathe, with focus on the ways and the four-jaw chuck. Although we do not plan to begin serious restoration of this machine soon, we still would like for it to be presentable during the annual show in July. Because it appeared that water was leaking from the tailstock barrel, we disassembled the tailstock ram. Although it was not clear that what we saw was, in fact, water, there was considerable funkiness inside the tailstock. Further cleaning is in order here. (John McCalla took the tailstock handwheel crank handle, which was pretty clearly an after market part, to his home shop to see if he can come up with a replacement.)

We continued to do detail cleaning and painting of some of the smaller parts to the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press. Two pieces, the table and a link in the back gear engagement mechanism, are in the Easton metalworking shop of Eric Harvey for possible rehabilitation through cast-iron welding.

We are scheduling an experimental work session for Thursday, May 15. (Certain members of the crew, who are retired, desire to flaunt their weekday freedom, presumably to kindle envy in the rest of us.) If a good level of attendance is attained, and if the Thursday work session proves to be a productive one, more weekday work sessions may lie in the offing. The next regular work session is scheduled for Saturday, May 17. Anyone wishing to participate in the Thursday session should contact Dave at: welserda@WORLDNET.ATT.NET Anyone else seeking information on the project should contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #71, Saturday, May 3, 2003

CAMS-ers Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich, were joined by Tuckahoe regulars Eric and Pat Harvey, Andy Koch, Art Lyman, Hans Wendt, and Dave "Bullet" Wooters for one of our most unusual and productive work sessions yet. First-time participant Ed Smigocki, a friend of Dick's and the former supervisor of the NASA/Goddard central machine shop, also joined the crew. (The size of the crew is all the more remarkable in that it wasn't until late Thursday before the work session that we had enough hands signed on to make a bare "quorum" of three or four souls.)

Doughnuts were, of course, in evidence, although with the absence of our Doughnut Procurement Committee Chairman, Dave Welser, the supply was more limited than usual. (Dave acquitted himself for his absence by disassembling and cleaning in his home shop several substantial parts for the Barnes drill press, including the spindle, which he relayed to Jerry for transportation to Tuckahoe.)

The day started slowly. We chomped some doughnuts, gave Ed an introductory tour of the facility, cleaned some parts, chased some screw threads on the Barnes drill press, and reviewed the work that would be needed to prepare a couple of the other machines for the July show. Then, shortly before lunchtime, we learned that a steam power class, to be taught by Eric Harvey, had experienced a severe drop in attendance. Eric had put his 1899 Frick Eclipse single-cylinder, 12-horsepower steam traction engine under power, but was left at loose ends as to what productive thing to do with it. As luck would have it, Andy Koch, director of the Rural Life Museum, was present, so diligent minds worked out a plan.

As our long-time readers may recall, a 16-foot-long, 1898 Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye engine lathe (estimated weight: 2 1/2 tons), has been sitting since November 2001 under tarpaulins just outside the doors of the museum building end opposite the machine tool exhibit area. We had hitherto been unable to move the lathe inside because space was lacking in the exhibit. Andy graciously allowed himself to be persuaded that some of the farm tool exhibit space immediately adjacent to the machine tool area was underutilized, so we were permitted to condense that exhibit and move a large (wall-sized) display case three or four feet to the right. After that, we rotated the Rockford planer (estimated weight: about three tons with the table and motor removed) counterclockwise two or three feet, leaving a space five or six feet wide and about sixteen feet long. (Of course there was more work to be undertaken, such as moving the planer table about four feet to the left, and moving both the small New Haven planer and the Barnes drill press column completely out of the aisleway. In the course of a normal work session, any one of these "small" moves would have been considered a project in itself, but our collective energy level was high enough to make these chores seem a lot less burdensome.)

We removed the tarps from the lathe and undertook a hasty cleaning project. We positioned a railroad jack at the tailstock end of the lathe (the end closest to the building), and lifted the machine so that a couple of pipe rollers could be placed under the wooden skids (to prevent the skids from digging into the dirt when towing force was applied.) Then Eric positioned the Frick steamer at the opposite end of the building. With the doors opened at both ends, a steel cable was run through the building and connected to the tractor and the lathe. When all was in readiness, Eric applied power slowly to the tractor and dragged the lathe from its resting place in the dirt and gravel onto the concrete apron in front of the doors. After determining that all was well, the rollers were removed, and Eric dragged the lathe on its skids about halfway into the building. (The tractor's forward motion was obstructed by a fence.) The cable was unhitched and doubled, the tractor was backed up to the building again, then the cable was reattached to permit completion of the towing job. (Dare we say that there is something verging on the spiritual in using an 1899 steam tractor to move an 1898 lathe.)

At this point, the lathe was in front of the display area perpendicular to its contemplated space. We jacked the tailstock end up again, placed a pipe roller at the lathe's midpoint (to serve as a fulcrum), and placed a steel rod (about 20 feet long and 1 1/2 inches or so in diameter) under the headstock end to serve as a low-friction rail. We then pivoted the headstock end counterclockwise until it was aligned for movement into the display. Using wheeled pry bars, pipe rollers, and middle-aged muscles, we completed the move.

The lathe's outside storage conditions had been a source of vexation to us for nearly three years. (It also had been stored outside under tarps for about a year before it came to Tuckahoe.) Our unexpected good fortune at moving it indoors has therefore lifted a pretty large load from our minds. There is more good news here in that our rustproofing measures and tarpaulin cover resulted in little more than superficial rust, and our cleaning efforts removed a good deal of that. Still, the old girl will need a lot more tender loving care to make her presentable by showtime.

Our next work session is scheduled for Saturday, May 10. As you can imagine, we have plenty of work to occupy ourselves (and anyone else who may wish to join us) if we are to make the machine tool exhibit ready for the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association show on July 10-13. For further information, please contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #70, Saturday, April 26, 2003

A slightly damp April Saturday found the CAMS/Tuckahoe machine tool restoration team of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, Frank Rabbit, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich gathered in the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association's Rural Life Museum for another work session.

As is our wont, we pounded down a considerable number of torroidal glucose delivery systems. We had estimated our rate of consumption better this time, with the result that no specimens were left over at the end of the day.

Dave headed up the big project of the day--installation of the Rockford planer table drive rack with the new, freshly machined tooth. This project was truly a CAMS cooperative effort: Chickenmeister Extraordinaire Dave Bluett loaned a Brown and Sharpe rack cutter, which Vince sharpened, which Dave Welser and John Webb then used to mill the replacement tooth on Dave's horizontal milling machine. Dave used five Grade 8 1/4"-28 hex bolts, installed from below the rack and torqued to 110 in-lbs, to hold the tooth blank in place. After the tooth was cut (quite successfully, we might add--it is hard to tell it from the other teeth), Dave and John used a portable 1/2" hammer drill (and a Dremel tool) to form recesses in the planer table to clear the hex heads.

John and Dick brought the John T. Burr and Son portable keyway cutter to near-completion, including mounting a new cutter. About the only tasks remaining to be accomplished are making a handle for the large hand crank that powers the unit, and making or procuring a small removable crank for the carriage return. With a little luck, we may be able to demonstrate this hand-powered machine at the annual show in July, perhaps cutting simulated keyways in a length of aluminum shafting.

We decided not to apply any more paint to the Barnes drill press at this time. There are still a few small areas of uneven coverage that need to be touched up, but our consensus was that the machine will likely acquire a few nicks and gouges (hopefully small ones) during assembly, so we will do touch-up painting as the last step. We cleaned up some threaded holes and machine screws with taps and dies, as well as clearing dried paint from oil holes. We also cleaned a few parts that had somehow eluded cleaning last fall, or in the case of some screws and pins, received a partial painting during the last few work sessions.

Notice of Special Added Attraction: As regular readers of these reports know, we have frequently appealed for new volunteers to join our ranks. By and large, we have been quite satisfied with the response. We sense, though, that some of our fellow CAMS-ers are well-read, well-traveled, urbane men (and women?) of the world who will require more than just the prospect of working on dirty, rusty, oily machinery to drag them out of a comfortable bed on Saturday mornings. Hence, we announce here a new Tuckahoe feature--Saturday afternoon bluegrass jam sessions! Candy Rabbit, the wife of Frank, member of the group "Plain Brown Wrapper", and star of the widely-popular "Cornbread Corner" program (on WAAI, 100.9 FM, Cambridge, Maryland, on Sundays from Noon-2pm), is the driving force and hostess of these sessions. The invitation is out to bring your instrument ("Even if," as Frank says, "it's only your ear"), and let your musical talent flow. Machine tool restoration in the morning, lunch with the gang at the secret CAMS Eastern Shore eatery, then picking and grinning in the afternoon--who could ask for a better combination?! For further information, pay a visit to the Cornbread Corner website at:

(Purists who want to put in a full day of machine tool restoration work need not be worried about being distracted by the music--the jam sessions are held in the Tuckahoe meeting hall, rather than in the Rural Life Museum building.)

As we mentioned in Work Report #69, we are attempting to assemble a work crew every Saturday from now through the annual show on July 10-13. To receive a more complete (and probably more persuasive) recruitment pitch, please contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #69, Saturday, April 12, 2003

Rather than waste a perfect April Saturday working on their income tax returns, six members of the machine tool restoration project crew--Dick McBirney, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich--gathered once again for a work session on Maryland's Eastern Shore.

Through a minor error in logistics, we were provisioned with a number and variety of doughnuts that far exceeded our requirements. As if to exacerbate the situation, the small handful of Tuckahoe regulars who occasionally stop by for a snack break failed to materialize. Hence, nearly a dozen doughnuts went home with us at the end of the day.

John and Dick continued their work on the John T. Burr and Son portable keyway cutter. John had made an internally-threaded hub that will serve beautifully as the basis for a new crank handle for the device. (The original hand crank is missing.) In addition, to rectify a keyway problem, John reworked the shaft that carries the cutter. A trial assembly was attempted, and other areas that need work were identified. (In particular, some new machine screws will have to be made or procured to replace the two that hold the cutter feed mechanism in place. The existing screws have been abused almost to the point of shearing them.) The machine was then disassembled so that the castings could receive a coat of black paint. (They were primed in an earlier work session.)

Dick returned the table feed adjusting device for the Smith & Mills shaper. He made a new exit bushing for the piston rod and built up the diameter of the piston to remove the slack in the unit that was causing an erratic feed rate of the table advance. Dick also reworked the phase selection mechanism so that the feed adjusting device will be limited in its lateral travel. (This travel also contributed to the erratic table feed problem.) A new spring was installed in the phase selection mechanism to complete the repairs. Work on the shaper was concluded for the day when Dick tested the table feed mechanism under power.

Dave had taken the table for the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press drill press to a machine shop near his home for cleaning in their hot tank in an effort to remove any oil that may have soaked into the iron casting over the years. (This cleaning is necessary before any welding can be attempted to fill the craters in the table that resulted from the inattention of earlier operators.) Dave reports that he has retrieved the table from the shop, and that it is considerably cleaner than before.

Dave, Jerry, and Luther applied a second coat of paint to the column of the Barnes drill press (and related small parts). We noted that after two weeks of drying, the green paint was a bit darker than before, which is not a bad thing. (It's not quite Brunswick Green, but it is at least darker than British Racing Green.) We scruffed the surface with sandpaper, sanding or scraping away any runs, drips, or other high spots we encountered before we painted it a second time.

Our next work session is scheduled for Saturday, April 26. From that date forward, we will most likely be working every Saturday until the annual show of the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association on July 10-13. In addition to restoration work, we will need to do a considerable amount of cleanup and storage in order to have the exhibit area shipshape for the show. Hence, new volunteer participation would be even more welcome than usual. For more information, please contact Vince Iorio at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #68, Saturday, March 29, 2003

A robust crew, consisting of Vince Iorio, Charles Keeney, John McCalla, Eric Stefan, Jerry Tuwiner, John Webb, Dave Welser, and Luther Dietrich, pressed forward with their work on the machine tool restoration project.

We had significantly better luck with eastbound Bay Bridge traffic this time. There were no accidents on the bridge, and no lines at the toll plaza. (Westbound traffic was not quite so light at day's end, but that is another story of which the less said, the better.)

A large crew calls for a large supply of doughnuts. We were generously provisioned with at least two dozen assorted specimens from Maryland and Virginia sources. (The supply was so ample that there were several left over at day's end.)

A large crew also needs to have several projects underway simultaneously to allow progress to be made without having workers getting in each other's way. In this we were successful. First, with some help from Eric and Jerry, Vince assembled a Rivett lathe that he and Dave acquired from a vendor at Cabin Fever. The lathe was missing its countershaft (Where have we heard that before?), but Vince located one on eBay. (Why can't we do that for all of our machines that are missing countershafts? We've tried, but they seem to be scarce to nonexistent.) Our current plan calls for the lathe to be located in the watch factory portion of the exhibit, with the countershaft to be secured to the rafters and powered by an electric motor mounted atop the structure. This lathe will then serve not only as an exhibit piece, but it will also give us turning capability on-site.

Next, John Webb, who has been spearheading the restoration of the John T. Burr & Son portable key seat cutter, applied primer to the tool's cast parts. John undertook an ingenious repair to two broken threaded lugs on the main body casting. Rather than fabricating and attempting to weld cast-iron replacements, John machined two new lugs with a protruding tongue at their base, and then machined the body casting to accept them. The lugs are now secured with screws to the body casting in a way that will be nearly invisible when the unit is assembled.

Charles and John McCalla completed the assembly of all major parts to the small New Haven planer. A few small parts were left off, or removed for rehabilitation. Chief among these was one of the elevating screws that had somehow been abused into a double "crankshaft" bend. John is going to attempt to straighten the screw. If he is not successful, we may have to replace both screws with modern components. This may prove to be difficult and perhaps undesirable, as the original screws are of square form, rather than the more readily-available Acme form.

Jerry brought the die filer that he built last year from a Metal Lathe Accessories kit (the subject of a construction article, "Building an MLA Filing Machine," that Jerry wrote for the September/October 2002 issue of "Home Shop Machinist"), so that he and John McCalla could file aluminum rack tooth templates to be used in the restoration of the missing tooth in the Rockford planer rack.

Eric cleaned and applied primer to a number of the smaller parts for the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press. Luther applied the initial coat of paint to the drill press column, as well as to a few other parts. (Dave wants it known that he pitched in and helped with this towards the end of the day.) After it had dried somewhat, the "manly" shade of green paint turned out to greatly resemble British Racing Green. It will still look good, though, especially in contrast to the turn-of-the-20th-century-basic-machine-tool-black-or-grey paint jobs that the other tools have received.

Dave returned several Barnes parts that he cleaned and primed at his shop. (These were among the small parts that we painted.) Dave also returned the disassembled and cleaned downfeed drive for the Barnes. As he reported earlier (Work Report #66, March 8, 2003), the brass worm gear was quite worn. Because the relevant parts were mostly wet with fresh paint, we did not attempt a partial reassembly to determine if the gear is still serviceable.

(Since this work session, CAMS-er Dave Bluett has loaned us a Brown and Sharpe horizontal milling cutter of the correct form for cutting the replacement planer rack tooth. The cutter is in the custody of Dave Welser, who has been ramrodding the rack tooth replacement project.)

Our next work session is scheduled for Saturday, April 12, 2003, starting around 10:00 a.m. in the Rural Life Museum building of the Tuckahoe Gas and Steam Association. For directions, or for other information on the machine tool restoration project, please contact Vince at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #67, Saturday, March 15, 2003

Another small but industrious crew, this time consisting of Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, and Luther Dietrich, assembled in the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association's Rural Life Museum for another machine tool restoration work session. For the second consecutive Saturday, travel to Maryland's Eastern Shore was hindered by an accident on the Bay Bridge, with crew members reporting delays of from 30 minutes to an hour. To compensate, we suffocated our sorrows with doughnuts (eight Boston Cremes, the rest Sugar-Glazed). (To our credit, all of the doughnuts made it to Tuckahoe before we started taking out our frustrations on them.)

John returned the pinion and related parts for the Manley arbor press that he had been working on at home, so we were able to complete our assembly of the device.

The major project of the day was to disassemble the clapper for the Smith & Mills shaper and thoroughly evaluate the unit for cracks and other causes of looseness. John Webb had procured a Crown Fault Finder (crack detection) kit for this and other projects, so we put it to the test. We had visually observed two cracks in the clapper that originated at one end of the taper pin (pivot) hole. (We also determined that the taper pin, a Number Nine, was bent. The locations of the cracks and the presence of the bent pin lead us to the conclusion that a previous operator had attempted too heavy a cut in some fairly stern stuff.) We wanted to know if we were observing the entire length of the cracks, or if they continued beyond what we took to be their end points. (It was not a frivolous question--the clapper's external surface was unfinished from casting at this point; hence it potentially obscured our visual inspection efforts.) The kit included aerosol cleaner, penetrant (dye), and developer. We followed the instructions closely, and found that the cracks were indeed limited to the lengths visible to the naked eye. While we were glad to learn that the piece was not damaged more than was apparent, we confess to a mild degree of disappointment--we had hopes that the crack detection kit would open up a wondrous realm of information. (Oh well--it was our first time. Perhaps with more operator experience, the detection technology will reveal more to us.) Frank took the clapper to deliver to Eric Harvey (Tuckahoe's cast iron welding guru) to determine if it can be repaired, or if we will have to fabricate a replacement. Some sort of corrective action will be necessary--the location and extent of the cracks are such that the clapper will almost certainly break if we attempt to machine anything much heavier than aluminum.

Also relating to the shaper, Dick removed the backlash adjustment mechanism from the table feed rod. He took it home to make bushings and to take other corrective action to remove the slop from the assembly while it is in motion.

We performed a number of other small chores, including cleaning the teeth of the bull gear on the Rockford planer, and taking measurements of a number of machine parts for which we will have to make replacements or mating parts. We evaluated a section of rack for the planer to determine if it would be feasible to form a tooth on the shaper, or if milling would be preferable. (A final decision has not been made, but we agreed that if the shaper is used, then (1) the clapper should be repaired or replaced first, and (2) if the tooth blank is to be mounted in the rack for shaping, it should receive additional bracing against the lateral force of the shaper.) Dave Welser reported from his home shop that he has completed drilling the holes in the rack section, and has reduced the tooth blank to proper height. Yet to be accomplished is drilling and tapping the bolt holes in the tooth blank, then actually milling or shaping it to the correct profile.

Around midday, we had a surprise visit from Mr. David Ruark, of Pomeroy, Washington (30 miles from Idaho, and 30 miles from Oregon, we are told). Mr. Ruark, who is active in engine and tractor clubs in his home area, happened to be visiting family members in Talbot County, so he dropped by the Tuckahoe grounds to get an idea of how we do things on the East Coast. We get few enough "outside" visitors during the off season, so we enjoyed chatting with him and showing off the fruits of our labors a bit.

Before we left for the day, we checked on the big Dietz, Schumacher, and Boye lathe that has been stored outside under multiple layers of tarpaulins for over a year. We noted that the top layer or two of tarps is growing a little threadbare, so we will have to renew them in the near future. (It probably wouldn't be a bad idea to completely unwrap the machine and check on how well our rust retarding methods have been working.)

The next work session date is set for Saturday, March 29. For directions, or for other information on the project, please contact Vince Iorio at

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #66, Saturday, March 8, 2003

A small but determined work party of Vince Iorio, Eric Stephan, Jerry Tuwiner, and Dave Welser put in a semi-full day in the shop at Tuckahoe today. The group's travel was held up by an accident on the Bay Bridge, but overall the delay was not that significant. A supply of doughnuts was on hand, but such was the group's dedication to the task at hand that the gang only nibbled at the delicacies--most were still on hand at day's end!

There was some storm damage to Tuckahoe's tractor and farm machinery pavilion from the snow load and to the power distribution system in the Gas Engine Building from lightning on the Sunday after our last big snow storm. Lightning struck two large trees near the Gas Engine Building as well. We did not have all the lights in the museum for a while until Eric Harvey showed up with a key to get into the breaker box and reset the tripped breakers.

Jerry and Dave mounted the Manley arbor press (from the Holland Manufacturing Co. tack factory in Baltimore) to the exhibit wall but were not able to completely assemble it. (John McCalla had taken the pinion gear and its shaft to his shop for some applied rehabilitation.)

Jerry did some more finish work on the Barnes drill press main column casting and applied what we hope to be the final coat of primer. Eric cleaned several other pieces of the Barnes which Jerry then coated with primer. Vince brought the paint for the Barnes and mixed it on site. One of our number (perhaps revealing a hitherto-unsuspected flair for the decorative arts) pronounced it to be a very "manly" black with a slight tinge of dark green. (It should look great.) Dave cleaned several other pieces for the Barnes but decided they needed more work, so they went home with him. He has the table, two pulleys, a shaft standoff, the Barnes downfeed mechanism, and the Rockford planer rack section with the missing tooth. The drill press table needs some serious help to fill the numerous pockmarks provided by one or more less-than-attentive previous operators.

Dave reports further that he disassembled the Barnes power downfeed mechanism and placed it in his parts washer. He did some scrubbing in the internal area, but there was so much dried grease that the brass gear would not come out until he manually chipped out some of the crud. To complete the cleaning, he left it in the washer overnight with the pump running, blowing cleaning solution directly on the worst of it.

It is a worm gear set, with the large brass worm gear badly worn. (The crud was yellow, reflecting the quantity of brass worn off the gear over the years that it ran semi-dry.) Without the shaft that holds the brass gear in place it cannot be determined if there is sufficient material remaining at the interface to provide reliable power for feeding. (The assembly will have to be returned to Tuckahoe for test-fitting to make this determination.) The gear is about 4.5 inches in diameter and 1.25 inches wide. John McCalla is exploring the possibility of machining a replacement--not an easy task, because the worm gear will need to be helically-cut to mate properly with the worm.

Dave plans to clean and primecoat the downfeed mechanism housing so that it can be painted as soon as it can be returned. We can fit the shaft then and see how bad it looks at that time.

Dave and John Webb milled a slot into the Rockford planer rack section as a first step in replacing the broken tooth. They also spotted the five holes for the five mounting screws. (They only spotted the holes because at the time of their labors, the crew had not settled on a mounting scheme. There was some initial sentiment for a mix of screws and dowel pins, but the final plan is to rely exclusively on screws.) They bandsawed a slug of 4140 CRS that Vince supplied and dressed it down to fit very snuggly into the slot. Finally, they cut it to the same length as the other teeth. Yet to be done: Drilling and tapping the holes for the mounting screws, cutting recesses in the underside of the table to clear the screw heads (we think that this is preferable to countersinking screw holes in the rack section itself), and shaping or milling the tooth profile.

Vince took a number of measurements of the gears and pulleys on the Excelsior drill press and the planer to figure out how much belting we will need, and to attempt to determine the size of motors we will need. Our best estimate is that we will need a 220v, 2 HP repulsion start motor with a variable speed control, like the one on the Pratt and Whitney horizontal milling machine, to power the planer.

Dave delivered the pieces of the Rivett lathe that had been gathering dust in his basement since Cabin Fever. Vince will bring the rest next time. He also has a set of legs for it, so we may have an operating lathe by May!

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #65, Saturday, February 8, 2003

The crew of Dick McBirney, John McCalla, Frank Rabbit, Jerry Tuwiner, and Luther Dietrich convened for another work session on the machine tool restoration project at the Tuckahoe Rural Life Museum.

The Tuckahoe show grounds were covered with snow and, although the roadways had been plowed, we experienced pretty slippery going getting to the Museum building. A little shovel work helped to clear a path to the entrance. Once inside, we found that the heating system was not functional. Fortunately, we had the foresight to bring along a mixture of Boston Creme and jelly-filled doughnuts to generate a little internal warmth to fuel our labors. (The full truth be told, the building is well-insulated, so working conditions were quite tolerable.)

We spent a good deal of time attempting to improve the surface finish that we were producing with the Smith & Mills shaper. For starters, Dick and John did some work to tame the feed mechanism, getting it to feed about 5 or 10 mils per stroke, instead of the large feed we were getting. They disassembled the adjustable backlash linkage (located midway on the feed rod) and found a handmade spring of dubious purpose in it. Upon analyzing the assembly, Frank felt it would work just as well without the spring. We tried it and he was correct. We all agreed that the link's sliding parts are very worn, to the point that it will occasionally bind up and give a full stroke feed. Even though it seems to work for the present, Dick plans to remove it again at the next work session and rework it with bushings to eliminate the side play.

We also observed a slight looseness in the clapper, which normally might suggest that the tapered pin holding the clapper needs reworking, i.e., either the pin is worn and/or the hole needs to be reamed. As we observed back in Work Report #25 (May 25, 2001), though, the clapper body has a small crack near the pivot pin, so that must be investigated as a possible contributor to the looseness problem.

Also, the finger knob used to change the feed phasing (pull the knob out, rotate the feed eccentric 180 deg, and release the knob) has an inexplicable "feature" in the form of a cylindrical length inboard of the knob that is the same diameter as the shaft that it mates with, thus allowing the feed rod to migrate outwards onto the knob. (As noted above, this causes the backlash linkage to bind and advance the table by far more than the desired amount.) We eliminated this migration by temporarily putting a hose clamp on this diameter. Plans are afoot to either make a replacement knob with a larger base diameter, or to modify the existing knob to eliminate the unnecessary cylindrical length at its base.

Finally, we experimented with reversing the orientation of the Armstrong tool holder and its 5/16" tool bit and found that we were able to further improve the quality of the surface finish (taking shallow cuts in aluminum). Operating the tool holder in a reversed position is not a recommended practice, especially if we want to take heavier cuts in steel or iron, so we are going to rummage through our stock of tooling and see if we can locate some heavier tool bits that can be mounted directly in the clapper.

We also examined critically the broken tooth area on the Rockford planer table's rack, and discussed possible repair methods. At this time, the leading plan involves milling a rectangular slot at the base of the missing tooth, locating a replacement tooth blank by means of a number (to be determined) of screws in holes drilled and tapped from the backside of the rack, then finishing the tooth profile in a milling machine. Largely because some key members of our crew were missing, we refrained from making a final decision.

In addition to our work on the shaper and planer, Jerry gave the low, rough spots on the W. F. and J. Barnes drill press column an application of spot glazing putty. The putty should be thoroughly dry by our next work session, so we will be able to sand it and feather it into the surrounding primed areas. If all goes well, we should be able to apply a final coat of primer before we paint the unit.

Our next work session date will be Saturday, March 8. As everyone knows, though, we have been having an especially rough time with the winter weather this year. Before making the trip, all current and prospective new volunteers should coordinate with Vince Iorio to assure that the session is on. Vince may be contacted at:

CAMS/Tuckahoe Machine Tool Restoration Project

Work Report #64, Saturday, January 11, 2003

The crew of Vince Iorio, Dick McBirney, Frank Rabbit, Eric Stephan, Jerry Tuwiner, Dave Welser, John Webb, and Luther Dietrich launched the first work session of the New Year on the machine tool restoration project at the Tuckahoe Rural Life Museum.

Over a month had passed since our last work session, so we found it necessary to engage in a teamwork-building exercise of demolishing a couple dozen doughnuts (half from Maryland and half from Virginia). In addition to rekindling a deep sense of camaraderie, the tasty little devils provided us with a much-needed burst of calories for a cold-weather outdoor project. CAMS-er Al Haracz showed up with his truck ready to pick up a load of our famed Holland Manufacturing Co. tack cans, for which Al made a generous and much-appreciated contribution to the machine shop building fund. Thank you, Al! (Perhaps it would not be inappropriate to mention that, although our stock of these marvelously useful containers has been reduced, we may still be able to fulfill your requirements. Contact any team member for details as to pricing and pickup/delivery options. Act now!)

Dick took on the task of fitting to the Smith and Mills shaper the replacement table feed ratchet wheel that CAMS-er Rich Kuzmack made. (See Work Report #61, Saturday, October 26, 2002.) If there is any binding in the table, it is easy for the pawl to strip teeth from the wheel, so a good deal of painstaking work was necessary to assure that all was in order before the unit could be placed under power. When the moment came, the table feed mechanism worked as good as new. We still need to do a little tuning to eliminate some chatter from the cutting operation, but for all intents and purposes, we now have a fully-functional shaper. Thanks are again due to Rich for sharing his specialized skills to aid us in completing this project.

For our major heavy-lifting endeavor of the day, we removed the table from the Rockford planer, inverted it, and removed the rack segment with the broken tooth. This chore actually required a good deal of advance preparation. By bringing unimaginably sophisticated woodworking techniques to bear, John made two heavy wooden stands that were grooved and notched to accept the trunions at either end of the table, with sufficient clearance to permit the table to be rotated. Using Dave's engine hoist and a good deal of wood cribbing, we embarked on another of our Towers of Hanoi exercises to move the table from the bed, turn it 90 degrees, and lower it to the stands. We experienced one moment of unwelcome excitement when a lap link failed in the first chain that we were using; fortunately the table had not been lifted clear of the bed, and the chain did not part completely. When the table was secured in its final resting position, Frank made short work of removing the offending rack section.

Jerry applied the first coat of primer to the column of the Barnes drill press. Our immediate goal is to have that machine under power in time for the Tuckahoe Steam and Gas Association's annual show this July. The column is the core of the unit, so when it is fully primed and painted, we expect that the restoration will move fairly quickly.

We acknowledge with deep gratitude CAMS-er Tex Rubinowitz's donation of a period Gerstner tool chest with numerous measuring and layout tools. No proper machine shop is complete without at least one of these chests, so it is a particularly welcome addition to the exhibit. Thank you, Tex!

Our next work session is set for Saturday, February 8. As we all know, the weather can be pretty iffy at this time of year, so if snow or other weather nastiness appears imminent, please confirm that the session is on by contacting Vince at:

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