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Old 02-09-2018, 04:00 PM
Pete VanderLaan's Avatar
Pete VanderLaan Pete VanderLaan is offline
The Old Gaffer
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Chocorua New Hampshire
Posts: 22,270
Pete VanderLaan is on a distinguished road
Then by all means get a copy of the hot glass information exchange and built the grinder Nick illustrated so well in the book. I mean really illustrated. There will be no doubt in you mind what you need to do. What an incredible draftsman.
You could get a wheel turned at a competent machine shop in the SE. Most good shops have "Drops" from bridge abuttments and you can get a very nice 1.5 inch thick head made. Have them "clear face "it both sides, chamfer the edge and have a 1.29 inch hole bored in the dead center. Building the arbor is the next step. It's a 1.25" shaft with a keyway. number 13 coarse thread on the top 2.5 inches of the shaft going through your wheelhead. Two big thrust bearings, more steel, then 1 -18 inch double sheave Browning pulleys ( accept no substitutes) , buy some grit and step back in time.

I wrote this up extensively a number of years back and believe it's still in the archives. Use a 1.5 HP motor minimum. That machine can be built for about $800 bucks in todays dollars. Buying it would get you a disappointing machine, underpowered and would run well over 3K alone, more likely four.

Jim Clark had a full polishing shop for sale in Boulder Co. He quit glass a long time ago but had a decent set up. For some time, the Rocky Mts was ground zero for polishing tools, mostly through Bingham's pack rat efforts. A lot is still around Santa Fe as well but may be in use.

By 1990, all the old Somer and Maca and Lange machines were gone. So now, you need to weld what we used to pay almost nothing for, although in those days, 50 bucks didn't feel like nothing. Don't skimp on the steel. This stand should weigh two hundred pounds.

Denver Glass machinery was not something we had a high opinion of. Those multi function machines were sort of perpetual cross contamination tools. Our approaches were anal enough that you scrubbed down between stages. I confess I miss my upright felt and cork, sold in Santa Fe. I have no room for it here but it was grand machine.
Those were heady days.
Where are we going and why am I in this basket?
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