Plastikov rail stock instructions
a guest Jan 14th, 2020 95 in 24 days
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- For making and hardening the rail stock you will need these items, all of which are commonly available in any hardware store:
- 1. 1/4 inch thick (~6.35mm) common bar stock (see picture).
- 2. 3/64" (0.050" decimal, 18 gauge, 1.27mm metric) steel sheet stock.
- 3. A vice, preferably. Some C-clamps would probably work as well as they won't be holding that much pressure.
- I recommend a 2-3 lb hammer, but any hammer or heavy hard object would probably do just fine.
- 5. A sawzall, dremel, hacksaw, or something else to cut the sheet metal.
- 6. A grill, bon/camp fire, or some other way to heat the metal for carborizing and hardening.
- 7. A source of charcoal, such as regular grilling charcoal.
- Cut the sheet stock to at least 190mm (7.5") long by 65mm (2.5") wide, which is a little big to give you some play room for fitment and bending (though if you are still unsure, you can make it a little wider). The purpose of the 1/4" bar stock is to set the gap and to clamp the sheet stock for bending. Clamp the sheet stock between the bar stock, preferably to where you will have about half on each side after bending. Then gradually tap it over, going back and forth lengthwise, until the sheet follows the first bend.
- See pictures: https://i.postimg.cc/bw6hvDmK/rails-1.png and https://i.postimg.cc/mDYptKbt/rails-2.jpg (note: I just used old scrap from shelving, hence the paint and rust.)
- Continue doing the same following the bend around the bar stock.
- See picture: https://i.postimg.cc/V68DQ4j1/rails-3.jpg
- Then do it over again, as you need two. That's it for the stock. Then cut the stock to to Ivan's rail specifications, and fit as necessary. If you need to harden, make sure to drill and tap the rails first.
- Hardening. If you started with a hard enough stainless steel, this will not be necessary. But if you started with a mild (low carbon) or otherwise soft steel, this step is necessary. If you are unsure, test it with a file.
- Case hardening is insufficient, so the rails must be through-hardened (pack carborized). This adds the necessary carbon for hardening. To do this you need to keep the rails glowing hot for 6-12 hours in a carbon-rich environment without oxygen. Any camp fire or bonfire will do.
- Find a pipe or some square stock to fit the rails in (they can touch). I used a length of square stock of approximately: .76" (19mm) OD x .6" (15mm) ID x 10.5" (175mm) length.
- Seal one end with a cap, clay, quickrete, or something else that can take the heat. I used quickrete since I had some handy. Let it harden. Crush your charcoal to where it will fill the gaps.
- Put in your rails and pour in the charcoal around them. Tap to settle. Leave about half an inch at the top so you can seal that end as well. I put a Q-tip in the quickrete at this end just in case, so it could burn out and not build pressure. Let that harden.
- Next, stick in a fire for 8-12 hours to carborize the metal. Periodically check to make sure it is glowing. Then let it cool naturally, then take out the rails.
- Now your steel has sufficient carbon to harden. In general (it has some dependency on the starting alloys), a quench in a saturated brine water solution will work. Prepare the solution and allow it to cool. Heat the ejector section to glowing, then immediately quench the rail in the brine solution while moving it in a figure 8 motion, so as to cool it as fast as you can. Use a file to confirm that it has hardened. If it is, you're all done!
- If this didn't cool it fast enough to harden your ejector, you can re-try with chilled solution, or use this specialized quenching solution (scale the recipe down as desired- you don't need that much):
- Super Quench (by Rob Gunters). (stir before each use)
- 4 1/2 gallons water
- 5 lbs salt
- 32 oz. Dawn Dish soap (blue)
- 8 oz. Shaklee Basic
- This solution allows the metal to cool much faster by allowing the metal to have better contact to the water, without being insulated by bubbling. The rate of cooling is critical to the final hardness.
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