Author Topic: Machining your own button jags  (Read 8357 times)

Offline Bluesmoke

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Machining your own button jags
« on: May 25, 2015, 02:41:51 PM »
Hi,
I am thinking about machining up some brass button jags. I have made my own stainless steel cleaning rod.

Not having a gun shop handy I would rather make my own and match them to with the cleaning batch thickness.

Is there anyone who has made their own and if so what advice would you offer?

Thanks in advance

Offline Dennis Glazener

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2015, 03:23:52 PM »
I have made a fair number of brass jags. I buy round brass stock a little larger than bore size. I buy 8 X 32 and 10 X 32 threaded rod to make the male ends of the jags. I put the brass stock in the lathe chuck and drill a pilot hole for the threaded stock that I am going to use, then run the proper tap into the blind hole. Flush the hole with some lacquer thinner, clean the threaded rod with the thinner then squirt some Super glue in the hole, let dry then tighten the threaded rod into the jag (I cut the threaded rod a tad long and use vise grips on the very end to put a lot of pressure when tightening. Then I cut off the end damaged by the vise grips). I then cut the threaded rod to proper length, then cut off the brass stock at the length you want it to be, then lay aside the unfinished jag to dry over night. Next day I will put the threaded rod end into the chuck and turn the brass to correct size for the cleaning patch material I am using. Then cut the jag grooves in the brass and I am done. If you are careful the chuck will not have damaged the threads but if necessary run a proper size die on to true the threads.

As far as advice, make them oversize, take it out and try it in the bore with your patch material. If too tight put it back and remove .005" - .010" and try it again until you get it to work like you want it to with your patch material.

Never had one made this way to come apart.
Dennis
 
« Last Edit: May 25, 2015, 08:35:17 PM by Dennis Glazener »
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Offline Dennis Glazener

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2015, 03:26:40 PM »
Oh forgot, if you are using stainless steel rods probably best to do away with the threaded rod and just cut the threads on the end of the steel rod and screw the brass jag on the end of the rods.
Dennis
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Offline Bluesmoke

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2015, 02:46:18 PM »
Thank you Dennis

Offline David Rase

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2015, 05:32:10 PM »
Next day I will put the threaded rod end into the chuck and turn the brass to correct size for the cleaning patch material I am using. Then cut the jag grooves in the brass and I am done. If you are careful the chuck will not have damaged the threads but if necessary run a proper size die on to true the threads.
Dennis
 
Dennis,
Instead of grabbing the threaded rod gingerly by the lathe chuck, you might try taking a piece of round stock 2 - 4" long and 1/4" or 3/8" diameter and  mount it in your 3 jaw chuck.  Center drill, pilot drill and thread the round stock.  You can then thread the jag into the mandrel without worry of damaging the threads.  Use your vise grips and a scrap of leather or brass to protect the jag while tightening or removing from the mandrel.  I have several mandrels in various sizes that I use for anything from jags to screws.  I also stamp a number 1 on the mandrel to correspond with the number 1 jaw in my chuck.  This allows me to repeat alignment each time I mount the mandrel into the chuck.  There is always a slight difference in the jaws of a 3 jaw chuck, at least in my old lathe.
David.

Offline Dennis Glazener

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2015, 05:59:12 PM »
Good set-up Dave, actually I have a 5C drawbar/collet set-up for my lathe and that works real well for making jags but I am usually too lazy to pull the chuck and set-up the drawbar/collet unless I am making a number of jags.

Dennis
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Offline okawbow

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2015, 06:43:02 PM »
I use brass rod, and turn it down about .020" less than bore diameter. I cut 3 grooves in the rod, about .050" deep, 1/8" wide. Center drill, tap drill, and tap a hole about 1/2" deep. Clean out the hole, use locktite or super glue, and thread a 1.000" long, 8-32 or 10-32 Allen screw into the hole until it is tight. Cut off the screw head and file the end smooth, leaving about 1/2" threads. Cut off the brass jag about 5/8" long. I sometimes put the jag back into a collet, and cut a dish in the end so I can use the jag on the end of a ramrod to push the ball down.
As in life; itís the journey, not the destination. How you get there matters most.

Offline David Rase

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2015, 08:12:51 PM »
I am usually too lazy to pull the chuck and set-up the drawbar/collet
Dennis
I hear you on that Dennis.  Even though it takes less than 5 minutes to change from my 3 jaw to my 4 jaw chuck, I always spend at least that amount of time thinking about it. ::)
David

Offline FlintFan

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2015, 05:25:53 PM »
Reading this thread makes the $4 or less I pay for nice jags from TOW seem that much cheaper.  Then again my wife is always asking me why I'm messing around tinkering with things to fill my time as well. 

Offline Bluesmoke

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2015, 01:35:31 AM »
Thanks fellas for your excellent advice ,so far.

Yes, I will be machining the male thread on to the range rod.Also looking at a separate rod for ball pulling after watching a pair of inept know- it -alls,  break off a ball tool in another blokes barrel in a misguided effort to help this fellow shooter remove a stuck ball.

It stood out clearly to me that the  penetrating screw thread was not centered on the ball and the 125 kg gorilla was bending the rod.He had the rod handle hooked on the shed roof bearer and there was at least an inch deflection in the rod as he could not pull down squarely on it. I am betting the pull jag entered the ball at the side near the rifling. I was a first time visitor to this a particular range so I felt out of place making a fuss..

My way of thinking is that I would employ a delrin centering disc quite near the screw and make the rod say 3/8" in diameter allow a larger connection thread.I don't feel it overly big for a .54cal.

I am also toying with a slide hammer arrangement to provide an even  axial pull on the rod. A cast sliding hammer with a U slot should provide enough "encouragement" to dislodge  any stuck ball.

Another thought was to use a much bigger  coarser screw with deeper flutes for more engagement in the ball say around the size of a 1/4" coach screw.I saw the same pair of gents pull the center out of a ball.

Thanks
« Last Edit: June 01, 2015, 02:22:42 PM by Bluesmoke »

Online davec2

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2015, 04:34:41 AM »
Bluesmoke,

I made my own tool to do this sort of thing and, what I consider the best part, is the inclusion of a ball drill that is applied before the ball screw is used.  Without drilling out some of the lead, getting a solid purchase on the ball wedges the ball even tighter into the bore as the lead is expanded by the screw.  I am not trying to sell anything here, but this is the tool and the explanation.  If you have the equipment, you can make your own similar devices.

http://www.luckybag.us/GunnersMate.html
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Offline Daryl

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #11 on: June 17, 2015, 06:22:18 PM »
Don't know if anyone mentioned this yet - but if turning jags of brass- drill, tap and install steel threaded section for the rod - in either 8x32 or 10x32 depending on the needs.
Daryl

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Offline Bluesmoke

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2015, 01:09:26 AM »
Sorry I had,nt got back to this thread.
We do the threads a little different in that the male 10/32 Unf is threaded on the range rod and utilises a stepped shoulder of 6.35mm (1/4" to you blokes) The shoulder fits into a short socket machined in the end of the jag.

The result is that the jag pulls really well down on to the range rod.
The club cancelled our last calendared day for another event and we have not shot since so, the jags were not used.

The chap concerned brought his rifle over to trial it and as the jag , machined as per Dennis's suggestion  was a bit tight. It went back on the mandrel I made for the lathe and in no time at all we had a happy camper.

The suspect chamber was also dealt with by dropping the barrel out of the stock and letting it soak in a Ballistol mix for half an hour. I had made a adapter to fit a stiff nylon bore brush to our range rod and  we had a tool to clean the chamber.

We managed to remove a small  gel like lump of fouling and followed it up with a sluicing out until we saw clear water. I have no doubts the gun will perform well on the first cold shot at the next outing.
Thanks for the help everyone

Offline Bluesmoke

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Re: Machining your own button jags
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2015, 08:42:15 AM »
Reading this thread makes the $4 or less I pay for nice jags from TOW seem that much cheaper.  Then again my wife is always asking me why I'm messing around tinkering with things to fill my time as well. 

I would be happy to be in your position.I would love to live close by TOTW, however I am half a world away.When I get an order from TOTW I make sure its a darn substantial one as $4 does not sound much but add $17.25 postage to that $4 and the exchange rate, that $4 then becomes $30 when it hits Australia.

My muzzle loading buddy  showed me a tweak on the jag machining layout. He showed me how to drill a fraction out of the back of the jag out to the diameter of the rod so a short length snugs inside.The  fitted shoulder makes it an  extra strong connection.