Weekend update for 6-15-15

A quick update for this last weekend. The slab was finished at the cast area. Here are a couple of views. I still need to get the gantry system up, but I am going to wait for my good friend Mac to help me with that one. He is a much better welder and fabricator then I am.


DSC_5749sOn the subject of metal casting. I was at a school that was being destroyed last week. As the building were being crushed I looked in the last one and to my surprise the shops were still equipped. The maintenance personnel were still there standing around and actually putting in stuff. The major tools had been taken out for auction, but all the support equipment was being left to be mixed in the building demo stuff and hauled away as trash. Asking if it would be okay to disappear this trash in my truck and the okay was given. It was a wood and metal shop. So off went all the casting flasks and any thing else that was useful. I also filled the back of my little truck with wood, cherry,maple,walnut and several other types.


DSC_5753sI really hate waste and all of this will now go to a good home.

Another 20′ of trench and conduit was laid for the new phone line to the shop.

The new batteries came in for the wire EDM. They are now installed and the machine is up and running in the testing mode.I have a post coming up showing it in operation later this week.

The rest of the weekend was spent doing solid works and working on the cnc router trying to get a couple of patterns made.

Until next time.


Finishing machining the safety for the AR-180B

We have finally finished machining the last part for the AR-180B safety. This is the master cam video showing the steps that were performed to complete this task.

With this last installment we have now completed machining the safety for the AR-180B.  This picture shows all the steps that we took to make the safety selector. The bottom on is an original.

DSC_5739csA close up of our safety to the original AR version.

DSC_5718csWe installed the newly made parts on my AR-180B rifle to verify proper fit.

DSC_5741csYou can see that both the pivot pin and safety fit properly.

DSC_5742csOur next step is waiting for the medium to come in to de-bur everything them off to heat treat on the shafts and start parkerizing the parts


AR-180B bolt hold open device

Short post for today, to much work yesterday and to little sleep. We finally received in the laser cur blanks for the bolt hold open lever. It looks good. We will need to finish machining it and then make a press tool to bend it properly.DSC_5728cs

Finished machining the pivot pin

This post will conclude the machining part of the AR-180B pivot pin for the bolt hold open. We have finally completed the machining portion of this project for this part. Here are the pictures.

This is the process from start to finish.

DSC_5714sOur copy compared to the original. I will start parkerizing this next week end.

DSC_5719cThey are all complete.



Weekend update for 6-7-15

Most of the day Saturday was spent making parts for the AR-180b. The last op on the selector lever was completed,a post is coming up. The pivot buttons were almost completed, one more bar to finish. I spent a great deal of time with the Japax wire edm getting it up and running a post, more on that in the future. Some other work was also accomplished as well.

The dirt was compacted for the new foundry area. It is now ready for concrete, all most any way.



I started on the trench for the new communication lines going out to the shop, 20′ was more then enough digging and back filling.

DSC_5699csEnough for one fun filled week end.


Our Government at it again

I generally do not write about political or government garbage but this one is important. It seems that this government has a thing against guns and free speech. It seems to bother them and they are trying everything to stop it.

This is from the NRA web site concerning the current move by this administration to ban site such as this. This is being done by presidential directive and not by law. I guess someone forgot to tell this administration about the Constitution and how this government works. No King has been elected here.

“Also regulated under ITAR are so-called “technical data” about defense articles. These include, among other things, “detailed design, development, production or manufacturing information” about firearms or ammunition. Specific examples of technical data are blueprints, drawings, photographs, plans, instructions or documentation.”

Please call your Representative.

Part Two of the Japax wire EDM

Today after making parts for the Ar-180B was completed I started back trying to get the Japax wire edm to work. When 9pm came about I finally stopped. A great deal was accomplished today. Starting with getting the upper head to move to being able to write, post and run a basic program. This post is the start up of the machine and how to move the table and the upper head of the machine.


I started this series because there is not much written or on video out there about operating the Japax wire EDM. These EDM’s are not the most modern of machines, but there are becoming available to small shops at a price that allows use to purchase them.

My goal with this series of video’s is to allow someone that happens to come across one of these machine be able to learn how to operate it.

I once again have to thank the guys over at McWillams sales and service ( for their help in getting my machine up and running.

In the next post we will write and down load a progrem and run it in dry run.

Making the AR-180B bolt hold open button

This post is about making the pivot button for the bolt hold open device for the AR-180B.


With no engineered drawings to work from the first item of business to take care of was making a drawing of the part with all the dimensions. To do this we used micrometers, feeler gauges and an optical comparator.


Using these measurement devices we were able to accurately measure the  the complete button. We also used references from parts suppliers to verify correct dimensions for matching components.

Side-Mount External Retaining Ring (E-Style)

Black-Finish Steel, for 7/32″ Shaft Diameter

For Shaft Diameter 7/32
Fits Groove
Diameter 0.188″
Width 0.029″
Ring Size
(A) 0.437″
Thickness 0.025″
Additional Specifications Black-Finish Steel
RoHS Compliant

Snap rings into the groove from the side of the shaft. Their three prongs make contact with the shaft and provide a wider shoulder than other external retaining rings for a larger retaining surface. They are magnetic.

Black-finish and zinc and yellow chromate-plated steel rings have a minimum Rockwell hardness of C47.

Next came a solid model of the part.


2sA program was written with master cam to run on the cnc lathe.

This is the video of machining the part on the lathe.

This is an picture of the part as it comes off the lathe when the first op is completed.


A comparison of the original part to the newly machined one.

DSC_5689csWhat has been done so far with still more to be made.

DSC_5691csThe second op to come

Saturday’s post

Today is a shop day as I am trying to get the pivot buttons completed for the AR-180B and finish the third op on the selector knob. I will post a video later today on time in the shop. I also chatted with Todd at McWilliams company and he was a great help on the Japax wire edm. I hope to have another video on the Japax this weekend as well. Later for now.

Machining the safety shaft for the AR-180B

This is the video of the actual machining of the AR-180B shaft. This is the first op in making this part. From here it will nest go to the mill to have the various flats, slots and holes drilled. Now on to the first op.

With the first op complete the next step is to write and set up for  milling the part.

DSC_5667csAll the safety shafts turned.