Topics

Source for brass channel

Russ Norris
 

Bill, during my tour of the Sacramento Locomotive Shops during the National Narrow Gauge Convention, we were shown the remnants of an SP narrow gauge tender that has been converted into a hazardous waste deposit.  Don't know if it was from SP #1 but here is a photo of it sitting quietly in the parking lot, continuing to serve the railroad today as it has for many years. only in a different capacity.
--
Russ Norris, MMR
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
http://blacklogvalleyrailroad.blogspot.com/

Bill Lugg
 

I got an answer back from K&S about their custom work. Apparently, all they can do is vary the leg lengths on their standard size channel.  They can't bend up a channel with a different web size.

I've tried bending up a piece out of 0.006 brass and the etchmate tool, but it wants to warp a bit during the bending process too, so I don't get consistent flanges.  Unfortunately I don't have a shear to cut the metal with which contributes to the problem I think.

I've ordered some 3 mm square tube to see if I can slit it to get what I want.  IF that doesn't work, I'm going to bit the bullet and buy some from Albion in the UK.

Thanks for all your great ideas.
Bill Lugg

 

When you work in HOn3 the laws of physics are on your side.  The highest stresses, those that take the material past the yield threshold, come from only few sources:
1.  Handling by outsized giant beings (1:1 humans)
2.  Thermal stresses from dissimilar metal expansion and contraction due to exposure to hot (summer sun) or cold (parked car on a Minnesota winter night) environments.  If the whole structure is brass that's no issue.  Note here: work hardening of materials has no effect on their thermal expansion properties.
3. Over tightening screws with not enough threads to support the load. Engineering rule of thumb here is thread depth at least the diameter of the screw; better 1-1/2 times the diameter.  Not the same for plastics.  They vary.  Most likely source of problems is with coupler pocket screws into short threads in thin brass.
Best bet here is to anneal the brass before machining, if you can, and learn how to get clean cuts in the gummy soft brass.  That's another subject.
FWIW -- Ed Weldon

Bill Lugg
 

Yes, I've experienced a similar issue on an unrelated part.  It was a verrrrry long time ago in a college shop class I took related to my ME degree.  We were tasked with fabricating a small C clamp from 0.5 inch steel plate among other things.  The shop teacher pointed out to us that when we cut the block out of the cold rolled steel plate, we'd be relieving the stress on that side of the material and the C would tend to pull together a bit.  IF it was a precision part, we'd have to take it to the mill to true it up (we cut it on a band saw), but for our purposes, it was simply important to drill the hole through the leg AFTER cutting so it would be straight and not affected by the warpage.

The moral of the story seemed to be there's no way to prevent this problem.  Especially when you're working on something as small as a piece of brass bar stock for an HOn3 loco.

Bill Lugg

On 10/7/19 3:58 AM, Dale Buxton wrote:
Long ago (about 25 plus years now) I was working on the same type of project, channel iron for a tender frame. I made some very small channels out of brass bar stock. Using first a slotting saw in my lathe and then a milling machine. Along the way,  I encountered a problem that I still don't know how to overcome. It has to do with longitudinal stress relief. When Brass bar stock is extruded, it develops (so I am told) an annealing stress along its length. I my case, the bar stock I was working kept warping away from the slotting saw or milling head as I worked down its length. Every time I finished a cut and I went to reposition the stock in the vise to continue the slot. The stock had developed a springy warp in it that curved away from the cut in it. I tried several times to eliminate warping effect but I never figured it out.

I realized some time later that I was annealing the brass and adding hardness to one side but not the other. I thought about heating the brass to relieve the new annealing that I had created, But I didn't want to soften the brass too much and make it useless. I was really on unsure ground here and had no one to ask what to do to fix the problem. (I still don't) At the time, I had to resort to bending it back the the other way from the warpage. This of coarse made the brass even harder! I eventually got enough channel to complete the the tender frame members so I never investigated how to eliminate the warping that I got. After that I discovered "Special Shapes"  and never attempted to make my own channels again. With Special Shapes gone, I will either have to find a new vender or workout the stress relief problem.

D Buxton

On Sun, Oct 6, 2019 at 5:08 PM Mike Van Hove <vanhovem22@... <mailto:vanhovem22@...>> wrote:

If I understand the problem, I would say this is not for a saw,
but for a small milling machine.

Now, you have an excuse for buying one of those.

Mike Van Hove
Columbia, MO

> On Oct 6, 2019, at 11:06 AM, Bill Lugg <@luggw1
<mailto:@luggw1>> wrote:
>
> Yes, I was wondering that too, I've got one of those Microlux
table saws, but I'm not sure I've got the right blade for this
task.  I'll have to look.  It would take just the right plate
around the blade too to prevent the material from slipping into
the machinery.
>
> Bill Lugg
>
>
> On 10/6/19 9:52 AM, Brian Kopp wrote:
>> Bill for ripping tube like that I wonder if there is a smallish
table saw out there in the hobby market.....
>>
>> That might be nice for other ripping tasks too like wood or
brass sheet stock.....
>>
>> Its always a good time to buy tools.... =)
>>
>> Brian
>>
>> --
>> Brian Kopp
>> Jacksonville, FL
>
>
>




Dale Buxton
 

Long ago (about 25 plus years now) I was working on the same type of project, channel iron for a tender frame. I made some very small channels out of brass bar stock. Using first a slotting saw in my lathe and then a milling machine. Along the way,  I encountered a problem that I still don't know how to overcome. It has to do with longitudinal stress relief. When Brass bar stock is extruded, it develops (so I am told) an annealing stress along its length. I my case, the bar stock I was working kept warping away from the slotting saw or milling head as I worked down its length. Every time I finished a cut and I went to reposition the stock in the vise to continue the slot. The stock had developed a springy warp in it that curved away from the cut in it. I tried several times to eliminate warping effect but I never figured it out. 

I realized some time later that I was annealing the brass and adding hardness to one side but not the other. I thought about heating the brass to relieve the new annealing that I had created, But I didn't want to soften the brass too much and make it useless. I was really on unsure ground here and had no one to ask what to do to fix the problem. (I still don't) At the time, I had to resort to bending it back the the other way from the warpage. This of coarse made the brass even harder! I eventually got enough channel to complete the the tender frame members so I never investigated how to eliminate the warping that I got. After that I discovered "Special Shapes"  and never attempted to make my own channels again. With Special Shapes gone, I will either have to find a new vender or workout the stress relief problem.

D Buxton

On Sun, Oct 6, 2019 at 5:08 PM Mike Van Hove <vanhovem22@...> wrote:
If I understand the problem, I would say this is not for a saw, but for a small milling machine.

Now, you have an excuse for buying one of those.

Mike Van Hove
Columbia, MO

> On Oct 6, 2019, at 11:06 AM, Bill Lugg <luggw1@...> wrote:
>
> Yes, I was wondering that too, I've got one of those Microlux table saws, but I'm not sure I've got the right blade for this task.  I'll have to look.  It would take just the right plate around the blade too to prevent the material from slipping into the machinery.
>
> Bill Lugg
>
>
> On 10/6/19 9:52 AM, Brian Kopp wrote:
>> Bill for ripping tube like that I wonder if there is a smallish table saw out there in the hobby market.....
>>
>> That might be nice for other ripping tasks too like wood or brass sheet stock.....
>>
>> Its always a good time to buy tools.... =)
>>
>> Brian
>>
>> --
>> Brian Kopp
>> Jacksonville, FL
>
>
>




Mike Van Hove
 

If I understand the problem, I would say this is not for a saw, but for a small milling machine.

Now, you have an excuse for buying one of those.

Mike Van Hove
Columbia, MO

On Oct 6, 2019, at 11:06 AM, Bill Lugg <@luggw1> wrote:

Yes, I was wondering that too, I've got one of those Microlux table saws, but I'm not sure I've got the right blade for this task. I'll have to look. It would take just the right plate around the blade too to prevent the material from slipping into the machinery.

Bill Lugg


On 10/6/19 9:52 AM, Brian Kopp wrote:
Bill for ripping tube like that I wonder if there is a smallish table saw out there in the hobby market.....

That might be nice for other ripping tasks too like wood or brass sheet stock.....

Its always a good time to buy tools.... =)

Brian

--
Brian Kopp
Jacksonville, FL

Bill Lugg
 

We'll find out.  I emailed them this morning to find out the minimum quantity and cost.  Their web site does state they do custom work.

Bill Lugg

On 10/6/19 12:20 PM, Mike Chamberlain wrote:
This was discussed on The Railwire not long ago . IIRC someone posted that if you call them they would make the shapes you need as a special order ......Mike

Mike Chamberlain
 

This was discussed on The Railwire not long ago . IIRC someone posted that if you call them they would make the shapes you need as a special order ......Mike

Brian Kopp
 

Me too!

--
Brian Kopp
Jacksonville, FL

kevin b
 

I think I just might order one of those.
thanks.
Kevin.

Etch Buddy Photo-Etch Bending Fixture

Item #: 86143

Bill Lugg
 

Yes, I have one of those.  Maybe you're on to something here.  I could bend up my own had have channel that's closer to the right thickness that what I could buy.  I'll have to try that.  Thanks for the idea.

Bill Lugg

On 10/6/19 11:24 AM, Bruce wrote:
I bought this tool from Micro-Mark.


Etch Buddy Photo-Etch Bending Fixture

Item #: 86143

I don't do too much with flat metal but believe this would make nice channels in any size needed if the metal is not too thick (which it wouldn't be if made to scale).

At $50 list I believe it is well worth it.

Bruce Bowie

On Sun, Oct 6, 2019, 1:20 PM kevin b via Groups.Io <arcatruck13=yahoo.com@groups.io <mailto:yahoo.com@groups.io>> wrote:

so, I would like to suggest something.
maybe you could use some brass strip and "brake" it like sheet metal.
might take some effort to make a micro brake, but you'd have the
problem solved from then on.
just an idea, hope it helps you.
Kevin.

Bruce
 

I bought this tool from Micro-Mark.

Etch Buddy Photo-Etch Bending Fixture

Item #: 86143

I don't do too much with flat metal but believe this would make nice channels in any size needed if the metal is not too thick (which it wouldn't be if made to scale).

At $50 list I believe it is well worth it.

Bruce Bowie


On Sun, Oct 6, 2019, 1:20 PM kevin b via Groups.Io <arcatruck13=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
so, I would like to suggest something.
maybe you could use some brass strip and "brake" it like sheet metal.
might take some effort to make a micro brake, but you'd have the problem solved from then on.
just an idea, hope it helps you.
Kevin.

kevin b
 

so, I would like to suggest something.
maybe you could use some brass strip and "brake" it like sheet metal.
might take some effort to make a micro brake, but you'd have the problem solved from then on.
just an idea, hope it helps you.
Kevin.

 

Think about building a cutoff "saw" using  3” x .03” x 3/8” Cut-Off Wheels by Black Hawk Abrasives driven by a 25,000 rpm die grinder instead of low speed metal blades that can't cut hardened steel and can "grab" brass with bad results. 
Hack a small power tool like a hobby saw or a disk sander for its slotted table and miter gauge. Add a fence and maybe a "swing arm mount" to raise and lower the cutting wheel. .........Eye protection is a must.
This won't do much for plastic or wood; but if your model making skills are still in that arena you'll be working that issue first.
Ed W
   

Bill Lugg
 

Yes, I was wondering that too, I've got one of those Microlux table saws, but I'm not sure I've got the right blade for this task.  I'll have to look.  It would take just the right plate around the blade too to prevent the material from slipping into the machinery.

Bill Lugg

On 10/6/19 9:52 AM, Brian Kopp wrote:
Bill for ripping tube like that I wonder if there is a smallish table saw out there in the hobby market.....

That might be nice for other ripping tasks too like wood or brass sheet stock.....

Its always a good time to buy tools.... =)

Brian

--
Brian Kopp
Jacksonville, FL

Brian Kopp
 

Bill for ripping tube like that I wonder if there is a smallish table saw out there in the hobby market.....

That might be nice for other ripping tasks too like wood or brass sheet stock.....

Its always a good time to buy tools.... =)

Brian

--
Brian Kopp
Jacksonville, FL

Bill Lugg
 

Yes, the 0.125 channel would work, but the difference in height would be obvious as the side sills are supposed to be narrower than the height of the end beams by a bit.  Your idea to rip a square tube might just be worth considering if I can find one.  If figure I could cut it to rough length first and then rip it.  I'm just not sure I've got the tool to do the job.  Dang, I might have to buy a new tool.  ;o)

Bill Lugg

On 10/6/19 2:51 AM, Brian Kopp wrote:
With 10% error, can you make the K&S 0.125" channel work?
https://www.ebay.com/itm/K-S-Brass-Channel-1-8-300mm-9885/283620158884?hash=item4209142da4:g:t4QAAOSwiNNdhUCI

Two other brass tube sellers are Albion and Trumpeter Tools. I am not sure they make channels though....

However a square tube *carefully* ripped down the center might work (not that I have the skill for such things....)

--
Brian Kopp
Jacksonville, FL

Bill Lugg
 

I looked at the web site, but didn't send a request.  Maybe I should do that.  I really miss all the goodies Special Shapes used to offer.  I'll have to see what they say.


Thanks

Bill Lugg

On 10/5/19 10:43 PM, Richard Johnson wrote:
K&S still makes a bunch of square and rectangular tubing. Also I beams and such. I just bought some a while back.
I bet they will incorporate special shapes as they have owned it for many years.  Wehn I bought a ton of large brass tubing for O scale boilers years ago special shapes was already owned by K&S just kept seperate.
Did you try the website or send a request?
Regards
Rich Johnson

www.RichardSJohnson.net <http://www.richardsjohnson.net/>

"Those who enjoy freedom must endeavor to preserve it."


"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms"
Thomas Jefferson


------------------------------------------------------------------------
*From:* HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io> on behalf of Bill Lugg <@luggw1>
*Sent:* Saturday, October 5, 2019 9:20 PM
*To:* HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io>
*Subject:* [HOn3] Source for brass channel
I'm thinking about building a tender frame from scratch that includes
some brass channel.  I need something that measures a scale 10" by
3.5".  That works out to about 0.114" tall with a 0.040" flange or a 1
mm x 3 mm in the metric world.  I've been looking on the web and found
that K&S seems to be the only US source and they have a rather sparse
selection of sizes. Apparently, K&S acquired Special Shapes so we lost
all the neat stuff they used to produce.  I found one supplier in the UK
that has what I want, but they're expensive.

Can anybody point me to other US sources for brass stock other than K&S
that might meet my needs?

Thanks
Bill Lugg



Brian Kopp
 

With 10% error, can you make the K&S 0.125" channel work?
https://www.ebay.com/itm/K-S-Brass-Channel-1-8-300mm-9885/283620158884?hash=item4209142da4:g:t4QAAOSwiNNdhUCI

Two other brass tube sellers are Albion and Trumpeter Tools. I am not sure they make channels though....

However a square tube *carefully* ripped down the center might work (not that I have the skill for such things....)

--
Brian Kopp
Jacksonville, FL

Richard Johnson
 

K&S still makes a bunch of square and rectangular tubing.  Also I beams and such. I just bought some a while back.
I bet they will incorporate special shapes as they have owned it for many years.  Wehn I bought a ton of large brass tubing for O scale boilers years ago special shapes was already owned by K&S just kept seperate.
Did you try the website or send a request?
Regards
Rich Johnson

www.RichardSJohnson.net 

"Those who enjoy freedom must endeavor to preserve it."


"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms"
Thomas Jefferson




From: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io> on behalf of Bill Lugg <luggw1@...>
Sent: Saturday, October 5, 2019 9:20 PM
To: HOn3@groups.io <HOn3@groups.io>
Subject: [HOn3] Source for brass channel
 
I'm thinking about building a tender frame from scratch that includes
some brass channel.  I need something that measures a scale 10" by
3.5".  That works out to about 0.114" tall with a 0.040" flange or a 1
mm x 3 mm in the metric world.  I've been looking on the web and found
that K&S seems to be the only US source and they have a rather sparse
selection of sizes. Apparently, K&S acquired Special Shapes so we lost
all the neat stuff they used to produce.  I found one supplier in the UK
that has what I want, but they're expensive.

Can anybody point me to other US sources for brass stock other than K&S
that might meet my needs?

Thanks
Bill Lugg