Saturday, February 11, 2012

Machining Friday, Part 3

Adventures in machining continues!

Friday was not the best of days.  I woke up late, for starters.  Not good.

Then, I was put to work on a Mazak VTC-20, a bigger brother to the VTC-16 I started on two weeks ago.  I was machining aftermarket brake brackets.  The milling operation entailed putting three bolts into a part to index it (orienting to where the machine expects it to be when the cutting starts).  After the three indexing bolts are in, the part is held down by a clamp that is clear of the machining path.  After the clamp is in place, then the three indexing bolts are removed.

Well, guess what I did on the second part of the day...

Yup.  Left the indexing bolts in.

The normal hum of an aluminum cutting bit cutting through aluminum was suddenly replaced by the low, dull roar of an aluminum cutting bit up against a grade 8 steel bolt.

I caught the machine before it went through the second bolt, but the first one's head was shaved clean off.


It was easy enough to replace the cutting inserts on the cutting tool, reorient everything, and start the process over again on the same piece of stock (the part wasn't harmed).

The shop owner said there's two types of machinists:  those that have already "crashed" a machine, and those that will in the future.
Overall, nothing caught on fire, no explosions, no money out of pocket, and I got a free souvenir!

That's supposed to have an allen head on it.  Bolt haircuts, courtesy of JBR.

Back to sculpting.

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