So I got the BIG Cavallin mill bolted down to my ancient welded steel pipe table I made back when I was a teenager . It’s perfect for this job and saved a ton of trouble . Next I had to get a big sprocket to reduce the speed of the gearmotor to the ungeared-down rolling mill
to about 25 rpm. This gives it some more mechanical advantage too . I had tried extending the manual handle to about 30″ long but that didn’t make rolling anything heavy easy enough to want to do more than once. It did not facilitate rolling steel to steel
hamer impressions, but the 1/2 hp 245 in. lb. torque gearmotor sure did !. Not quite what Mr. Durston recommended as far as power , but the fact that such a big mill might reasonably be powered by the suggested 3/4 hp tells me that I probably won’t be torturing the mill near it’s capacity like I did my Pepe (now residing in a kitty litter tub awaiting the Big Move.
(ps on that, keep the work comin folks, we need to pay for fixing the new place up . muchas gracias)…((did I mention it’s a beautiful spot on 3.75 acres of prime bosque land down by the Rio Grande south of Albuquerque ? … now I feel a bit like Oliver Douglas of Green Acres , without the farming bit … I will embrace the bugs and train noises ))
Back in mill mode , I’ve hammered some new plates and heat treated them; next will be to try and roll a 2nd generation plate between the hammered plate and a flat plate. This is to create a FLAT , bumpy-textured plate
that will deliver hammer-texture craters on the subject metal, copper in this case. The part that makes me nervous is rolling a sandwich of 3 plates : flat plain, subject 2nd generation steel, and hammered steel, because that’s what killed the Pepe in a few seconds . The reason I want the 2nd generation plate to stay flat is so that I can in turn roll it in a triple sandwich with another flat steel plate and the coper strip TO KEEP THE COPPER PRODUCTION-RUN STRIPS FLAT , so that they load into the
pancake dies easily , and normally , like plain flat strips. Having hundreds of curled textured strips to straighten out by hand is not my idea of efficient . Rolling flat textured strips IS !. Flat , textured on both sides strips, that is . Just call me triple sandwich man down by the Rio Grande…
One day later: the 3-layer sandwich to roll flat steel-to-steel impressions proved to be
close enough to my limit that I backed off and ended up only rolling 2-layer steel-to steel plates, which left the subject plate curved. i will have to flatten 2 of these out as best I can
and use them as the flat plates in a 3- layer production runs with copper being the center, subject layer . There’s something unnerving about rolling heavy impressions in a thick stack that I don’t like, no doubt largely caused by trauma from killing my Pepe that way a few weeks ago. With the new mill, I found out that with thinner stacks the motor will bog down if I ask it to do too much , which doesn’t hurt the mill , and this is a good safety net
for protecting the mill. I found I can roll a 2″ wide stack of two steel plates, transferring the hammer texture from one to the other . It’s very satisfying watching my big , heavy steel table with the new mill & motor setup, spitting out 2nd generation textured steel plates. Very nice, after all the struggle and nailbiting that led up to this .