The subject of this article is the adjustable angle plate seen in Photograph 1, and
made from the castings supplied by The College Engineering Supply. With there being
just two castings, Photograph 2, that required to be machined on their main faces
together with the four edges and the sides of the lugs it would appear a relatively
quick and easy task. This though is not the case, largely due to the size of the
castings being beyond what most workshops will be able to secure easily for machining.
Also, the position of the holes in the lugs relative to the faces and edges of the
casting is critical and not straight forward.
The castings did have some rather large areas of excess metal that needed removing
and for me this is best done outside the workshop using an angle grinder. The main
ones can be seen on the near edge of the two rear slots of the right hand casting.
In addition to removing any excess metal, grind a small chamfer on all edges where
the cutter will eventually have to run into, making it easier for it to get passed
any hard spots that may be present. For the viewer who would like more help with
the process of preparing and machining castings read my pages on the subject.
However, the castings I had machined well with no obvious hard spots. All the important
faces were free of major defects that may not have been removed in the machining
process, except that is for one corner that did have a piece missing and the fault
did not get fully removed I carried out. Of course, I could have machine more from
the adjacent faces but chose not to. The rear faces that I intended to paint were
though rather pitted, but more about that later.
First, set one of the castings upright on an angle plate and machine the first edge,
Photograph 3. Being a large face, it is improbable that the casting will sit on the
angle plate without rocking so some packing will be necessary, thin hard card works
well but you may need more than one thickness. I should add here that the machining
taking place is just the roughing stage as finishing will be carried out later.
I do realise that non UK viewers may find the transport costs for the castings that
make up this angle plate prohibitive, as a result, making this project a non starter.
However, I would though suggest that the project is worth studying as some of the
methods, may be of interest. Particularly, the methods for getting the
hinge pin holes in the correct position relative to the angle plates faces, something
that it vital for a tilting angle plate or a tilting vice. Also, the methods of
dealing with such large castings that would normally be beyond what could be secured
with the equipment normally available in the home workshop.
All pictures can be clicked on to provide a larger view