Author Topic: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress  (Read 15981 times)

Offline Chowmi

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First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc - updated with progress
« Reply #25 on: January 12, 2017, 03:42:42 AM »
I finally got some time to work on this patch box today. 
I was Mr. Mom over the holidays because the missus was away taking care of her parents.  Needless to say, I've only had about 4 or 5 hours to work on guns for the last month.
Man, it was nice to spend the morning in the shop! 

I gouged out a mold in a piece of semi-hard wood (need to use harder wood next time)  and scraped it to pretty close to the profile of the stock.  I annealed the patch box finial and pounded it into shape on the mold. 

I ended up with almost the opposite of what Alexander says in Grenville, in that I have a pretty good bend in the middle, and not much on the edges.  I may have another look at it and do a little more bending. 

Here is a photo of it laying in position on the stock.  I have bent the sides just a tiny bit more, but they still don't touch the wood.  I'm thinking that it will turn out alright with the inlet, but I may let it sit for a day and re-think it.

IMG_3632 by chowmif16, on Flickr

After that, I trimmed the patch box lid to the right width and bent it as well.  It seems to match pretty well at the hinge.

I then cut the knuckles with a jewelers saw and a hack saw.  They came out alright as well, although some of the cuts aren't as straight as I'd like. 
I did a bit of filing to get them to fit, but ran out of time for the day. 

Here's a pic showing the hinge.

IMG_3635 by chowmif16, on Flickr

The hinge almost fits together, just a bit more filing needed on the center knuckle.  After that, I'll work with it to see how it well it opens/closes. 

Cheers,
Norm
« Last Edit: January 12, 2017, 03:43:38 AM by Chowmi »
Cheers,
Chowmi

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Offline Mark Elliott

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc
« Reply #26 on: January 12, 2017, 04:00:11 AM »
That bend seems pretty close to what I normally get.  Sometimes I will punch the edges down a little if they don't lay relatively flat once you screw the whole thing down.    I do screw it down before I start the inletting.    That way, the screw holes keep everything lined up as you inlet it down.

Offline Chowmi

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc
« Reply #27 on: January 12, 2017, 04:03:39 AM »
That bend seems pretty close to what I normally get.  Sometimes I will punch the edges down a little if they don't lay relatively flat once you screw the whole thing down.    I do screw it down before I start the inletting.    That way, the screw holes keep everything lined up as you inlet it down.

Mark,
thanks for the reply and letting me know I am on the right track.
As you mentioned, I had intended to screw it down for inletting and thought that would give me a good idea how it was going. 

I like the idea of punching them down if required, thank you.

Might be a few days before I get to work on it.  Also need to clean up the edges of the finial and file a draft in them.

Cheers,
Norm
Cheers,
Chowmi

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Offline Paddlefoot

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #28 on: January 12, 2017, 06:28:08 AM »
You guys mentioned the "Illusion of a bend"  I was wondering if you get it too straight do you get an illusion that the hinge is concaved. Some of my friends are luthiers and I have noticed that if they make a classical guitar fingerboard without a crown or radius, the flat fingerboard will have the appearance of being concaved. Certainly not what you would want for a patchbox. Just a random thought.
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Offline Chowmi

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #29 on: January 12, 2017, 06:39:00 AM »
You guys mentioned the "Illusion of a bend"  I was wondering if you get it too straight do you get an illusion that the hinge is concaved. Some of my friends are luthiers and I have noticed that if they make a classical guitar fingerboard without a crown or radius, the flat fingerboard will have the appearance of being concaved. Certainly not what you would want for a patchbox. Just a random thought.

I think you are probably right.  The mention of an Illusion of bend was from Gunsmiths of Grenville County, and his point was that the hinge on the patch box doesn't need to exactly match the contour of the stock at that point.  He says that a little bit of a bend will create the illusion that the patch box is bent to the contour of the stock.  In essence, a little bend will cause your eye to assume it is the correct (larger) bend.  It's probably a similar illusion to the fretboard issue on the guitar you mentioned, but in reverse. 

Cheers,
Norm
Cheers,
Chowmi

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Offline Chowmi

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #30 on: January 13, 2017, 01:09:39 AM »
I spent a bit more time filing on the knuckles, and opened up the holes a little bit, and it works!

I can get it to bend about 90 degrees, which is good enough for me. 

I filed the draft in the finial and will drill screw holes and start inletting it when I have some more time.

Thanks again for all the help.

Cheers,
Norm
Cheers,
Chowmi

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Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #31 on: January 13, 2017, 01:50:54 AM »
Told you it would work. ;)
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Offline Bill-52

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #32 on: January 13, 2017, 02:44:35 AM »
Well done!  My first rifle had a curved patchbox hinge. I recall being absolutely delighted when it worked!

Offline Chowmi

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #33 on: January 13, 2017, 03:34:57 AM »
Told you it would work. ;)

Yes you did! 

Now to exercise my dreadfully bad inletting skills!

Norm
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Offline jerrywh

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #34 on: January 13, 2017, 09:01:47 AM »
 the only way a curved hinge can open is if it is sloppy where the pin goes through. The more bent the hinge id the sloppier it has to be to open. If it is curved to extreme it won't open at all. Think about it.
 The ideal hinge is straight where the lid knuckles are and the curve in the lid begins just behind the hinge.  Anybody can say differently but it is impossible for a curved hinge to work properly. Some originals were curved because frankly they didn't know any better. Never assume that an original is correct. Many of the "old Masters"weren't so masterful. Dave Crisalli's copy of the Chambers rifle is the proper way to construct a hinge of that type. The Guy is an engineer.
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Offline Joe S.

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #35 on: January 13, 2017, 01:52:51 PM »
Hmmmm.If your trying to recreate an "old masters work" don't you do it his way,warts and all?right or wrong you offer that gun up for critique by those that know you will get called on it.Sure looks like his patch box will turn out just fine and hope to see the final result.

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #36 on: January 13, 2017, 06:32:24 PM »
the only way a curved hinge can open is if it is sloppy where the pin goes through. The more bent the hinge id the sloppier it has to be to open. If it is curved to extreme it won't open at all. Think about it.
 The ideal hinge is straight where the lid knuckles are and the curve in the lid begins just behind the hinge.  Anybody can say differently but it is impossible for a curved hinge to work properly. Some originals were curved because frankly they didn't know any better. Never assume that an original is correct. Many of the "old Masters"weren't so masterful. Dave Crisalli's copy of the Chambers rifle is the proper way to construct a hinge of that type. The Guy is an engineer.

  that's my take on the subject, also. I see no reason to build something mechanically incorrect, just because that's the way they did it years ago. there's no reason that hinge can't be made straight with the cover being curved, so why build it so it is destined to bind and not fully open ?.  after all, these guns aren't original, they are modern representations of a an original style, styles aren't always mechanically or architecturally correct in every aspect, just because a sample exists. a better (more properly operating) hinge is surely not going to detract from the representation of the style. I would much more have a rifle that exhibits a style but is mechanically better is such a small aspect. of course one could extend that premise to include all sorts of details, but some of them should be corrected if possible without completely negating the representation.

Offline Joe S.

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #37 on: January 13, 2017, 07:05:50 PM »
a slight radius and some careful file work it should work fine,not like it's being bent in a half circle.Everything old,antique has been replaced with better technology, better ways of doing ect.but old and antique has its charm,look about it and is what most often drives folks to collect it in the first place,value part aside.IMHO

Offline Chowmi

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #38 on: January 13, 2017, 07:43:19 PM »
the only way a curved hinge can open is if it is sloppy where the pin goes through. The more bent the hinge id the sloppier it has to be to open. If it is curved to extreme it won't open at all. Think about it.
 The ideal hinge is straight where the lid knuckles are and the curve in the lid begins just behind the hinge.  Anybody can say differently but it is impossible for a curved hinge to work properly. Some originals were curved because frankly they didn't know any better. Never assume that an original is correct. Many of the "old Masters"weren't so masterful. Dave Crisalli's copy of the Chambers rifle is the proper way to construct a hinge of that type. The Guy is an engineer.

Jerry,
you are indeed correct about a curved hinge not working unless there is some slop in there.  And that is exactly what I ended up with.  There is room in the ID of the hinge so that it will work. 

I really don't want this thread to develop into a debate about  whether we should improve upon the techniques of the old masters or not.  I think that is absolutely a worthy debate, and I'd love to see it.

To explain my own approach, I like to attempt to build the ways those guys did, warts and all.  That is driven by two factors:  I like the historical nature of building as they did to the best of my ability.  Secondly, my skills simply haven't developed to where I can be better than them.   

I greatly appreciate seeing contemporary guns that are improvements on what the old guys could do, and greatly admire the skills that allow that.  I don't have those skills yet (or maybe ever), and may change my approach in future.  For now, I am content to build guns with realistic mistakes. 

That being said, I am absolutely happy to take criticism.  Without honest feedback, we will never improve. 
It could be that my solution to this patch box is neither historically correct, nor mechanically correct in the modern sense.  It's my first one, and I will take all lessons learned and apply it to my second, third and subsequent ones! 

This is not a rebuke of any criticism I have received.  I welcome and appreciate all of it, and will learn from it. 

Thanks again,
Norm
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Chowmi

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Offline oldtravler61

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #39 on: January 13, 2017, 09:00:39 PM »
   Norm I to struggle with the gun building. My first patch box was a real learning curve also. Do agree that each gun we make we learn or should. Also I believe that in the day. There we're good builders an not so good. As comparing between now an then. It's a world of difference between the materials used an how we do thing's now.  I like what you said. Warts an all it adds character to the gun. Mike

Offline jerrywh

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #40 on: January 13, 2017, 10:18:19 PM »
 There 's no debate. Facts are facts.  I never created the laws of physics.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2017, 10:20:15 PM by jerrywh »
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Offline Joe S.

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #41 on: January 13, 2017, 10:43:52 PM »
Without question,but of if you where to make a bench copy of an original by a well know maker and his hinge had a bend in it and you chose to make yours "right".You enter it say Dixon's to be judged they start looking your hinge over but you say ya but look it opens better,they might hand it back to you and give you the you need to handle more originals line ;)
« Last Edit: January 13, 2017, 10:45:01 PM by Joe S. »

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #42 on: January 13, 2017, 11:35:51 PM »
a slight radius and some careful file work it should work fine,not like it's being bent in a half circle.Everything old,antique has been replaced with better technology, better ways of doing ect.but old and antique has its charm,look about it and is what most often drives folks to collect it in the first place,value part aside.IMHO

       the problem with that train of thought is that we don't have an old or antique gun here. we have a brand new modern representation, and that is all it will ever be. I would rather have it work "correctly" and look decently similar as a gun that was built many years ago and let that old gun have it's place under the limelight, keeping my representation decently close, as a tribute to that old gun, but somewhat better working, due to improved technology and/or correct mechanics..

Offline davec2

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #43 on: January 14, 2017, 02:16:54 AM »
My personal take is that the guys who built these things 200 years ago were....a) very clever.....and b) made their guns the best way they knew how.  I try to do the same while keeping within the framework of building an 18th century rifle.  As for patch box hinges, I have bent them, but only at the edges....I always keep the center / working part of the hinge straight.  The following has become my favorite way to do this after seeing a photo of an original with a separate riveted on hinge.

I make the hinge (as wide as the patch box door) from two pieces of 1/16 inch thick brass plate and two lengths of 3/16 inch (or even smaller) diameter brass rod, each the full width of the hinge.  I put both pieces of brass rod in the lathe in turn and drill a 1/16 inch hole through them lengthwise for the hinge pin.  I then silver solder the two rods to the two pieces of brass plate.  Then I cut away alternate pieces of the brass rod to form the hinge knuckles.  All of these parts are nice and straight, so this work is easy to do.

Independently, I bend both the patch box finial and the door to match the contour of the stock as closely as I can.  Now, I file the plates on the hinge sides to match the contour of the underside of the door and the finial.  The hinge looks like this at that point......





At this point, the hinge halves can either be soldered to the door and the finial or they can be riveted.  Both are traditional methods.  Now I have a door and a finial that are curved to the stock but a perfectly straight hinge.  But it looks like its curved somewhat because the surrounding brass is.  If you want the hinge to look even more like it is curved, file off a little of the brass hinge knuckles on both ends.  Here it is just before assembly......



And here is the finished patch box......

« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 12:14:52 PM by davec2 »
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Offline jerrywh

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #44 on: January 14, 2017, 02:43:59 AM »
All the real good old time makers constantly tried to be better. Competition drove them to do so. Basically that is the cause of the golden age firearms. After the Revolution there were an excess of gun makers and in an effort to survive in business they each tried to out do the others in quality and decoration. The same thing is occurring today to some extent.  The other option is to go cheaper and cheaper. Now however the lower priced guns must compete with machine made. That makes it almost  impossible to survive if one is trying to make a living of gun making.  If it's for fun there is no competition except for ego sake. As for me, it's more fun when I make money, then I can sell a wall hanger and go buy a dozen hunting guns and maybe a 4 wheeler besides.
 Dave's patch box design is pure genius.  Like I said "the guy's an engineer". I never would have thought of that.
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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #45 on: January 14, 2017, 04:47:24 AM »
davec2,  yes that hinge looks correct. the center of the hinge would be sunk in comparison to the curve of the stock.  harder to make, but much better and mechanically correct yet still looking perfectly right. I think that although many of the rifle builders of that era were not necessarily engineers and machinists, they did know what was mechanically correct and what wasn't.  beautiful patchbox. also, by the way !.

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #46 on: January 15, 2017, 03:06:40 AM »
There 's no debate. Facts are facts.  I never created the laws of physics.
Well, surprisingly I did create the laws of physics, although few people realize it.  Did by shaking my woo woo stick three times while saying the word of the day. Works every time. You just have to know how to hold your tongue. :P
« Last Edit: January 15, 2017, 04:56:55 PM by Mike Brooks »
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Offline oldtravler61

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #47 on: January 15, 2017, 04:08:22 AM »
  All I can say is jerrywh an Dave2c are true master's at gun building!!!  Always impressed. Oldtravler

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #48 on: January 15, 2017, 07:23:08 AM »
I fully understand the value in making a "bench copy" of a historic article, I have a couple bench copies of well known all wooden clocks that I built, just to build them as they were originally built 150 or so years ago. I also have an appreciation of the precision that can be accomplished with proper hand tools, as I have used them my entire life. that said, this (a gun) is one area where really feel a deviation from "historically correct", is warranted by substitution of "mechanically correct, simply because we are able to achieve it in an are that can only make a firearm better. each to their own,...I wasn't trying to stir the pot, just offering opinion and conversation. we are all adults here, we should be able to discuss different view points with out resorting to argument. this is a great forum, that I have lurked on since it's inception. I have seen that the people here are much more open to discussion of different ideas compared to most of the varied forums I have been on....it is satisfyingly refreshing and I look forward to contributing my knowledge of wood, woodwork and hand tools as much a I can as well as learning what is available from all the authorative members here..

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: First Patchbox, need some help re: bending etc updated with progress
« Reply #49 on: January 15, 2017, 04:58:51 PM »
I fully understand the value in making a "bench copy" of a historic article, I have a couple bench copies of well known all wooden clocks that I built, just to build them as they were originally built 150 or so years ago. I also have an appreciation of the precision that can be accomplished with proper hand tools, as I have used them my entire life. that said, this (a gun) is one area where really feel a deviation from "historically correct", is warranted by substitution of "mechanically correct, simply because we are able to achieve it in an are that can only make a firearm better. each to their own,...I wasn't trying to stir the pot, just offering opinion and conversation. we are all adults here, we should be able to discuss different view points with out resorting to argument. this is a great forum, that I have lurked on since it's inception. I have seen that the people here are much more open to discussion of different ideas compared to most of the varied forums I have been on....it is satisfyingly refreshing and I look forward to contributing my knowledge of wood, woodwork and hand tools as much a I can as well as learning what is available from all the authorative members here..
I can tell you are new here....... :o
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Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?