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Johansson & his gauge blocks *big slow pics*

gar

Stainless
Joined
Feb 17, 2005
Location
Ann Arbor, Michigan USA
060621-1948 EST USA

WoodburnBob:

I stopped at the Henry Ford Centennial Library (Dearborn Public Library), and the Benson Ford Research Center today.

The earliest city directory was 1926. Neither Charlie Anderson or my Dad were listed. City directory information seems to have a slight delay. At this time the directories were spaced about 2 years apart.

The 1928-29 directory Shows Chas Anderson (Hilma) Blackstone Apts., 241 Monroe St., Dearborn, Ford Motor Co. My dad shows at the same address. So I was mistaken that my dad rented from Charlie. Note in all the city directories Anderson was spelled with one s. However, in the Ford archives I found it with ss. These apartments were in easy walking distance of the Ford Engineering Labs.

The 1932 directory puts Anderson at 22416 Beech. This is about a 5 block walk to the Labs. I am sure Charlie always walked to work. In the 1948 directory he was listed at 1327 Monroe which is 2 blocks from the lab.

At the Ford Archieves I found a wealth of information. I only looked at accession 214 box 7 and 8 as the most likely to show what I was looking for. Namely a picture or description of the gage for production testing of gage blocks. This I did not find.

In the Dearborn library I did not find C. E Johansson, but from the archives it appears he lived at a Belcrest Hotel, 544 Cass Ave., Detroit. This address showed up at several different dates. A 1919 address is 245 W. 55th St. NY.

A 1934 newspaper refers to 4/1,000,000" accuracy. A 1926 NBS letter mentions 0.000,002" accuracy. April 30, 1930 letter from NBS on measurement of 11 gage blocks from 0.100,000 to 0.100,010 were within 0.000,000,3" of nominal value. And parallel with within I believe 0.000,000,03", I forgot to write it down. Astonishing! I do not believe there was a decimal point error in the letter.

Nov 20, 1931 a letter from NBS on not able to change definition of inch to meter without act of congress. This change took place maybe 30 years later.

Ford Engineering labs opened Jan 10, 1925.

All sorts of different accessories were made.

List of men in Johansson Dept for 12-16-25 includes Charlie in the adjustment group.

In the Henry Ford Museum are a set of original gage blocks from 1899. It would be interesting to have these checked and see what their values are.

No date --- a description of heat treatment for Swedish Steel, and a separate column American Vulcan Steel.

First Ford car made after WWII was July 3, 1945. Mr. Ford was almost 82 at this time.

.
 

j king

Stainless
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Location
ohio
I have a old set of Johansson blocks.Part of them are labled as Johansson and part are B&S I think.It looks to be a correct set and not made up of 2 different brands.Any explanation for this?
 

gar

Stainless
Joined
Feb 17, 2005
Location
Ann Arbor, Michigan USA
060625-1816 EST USA

j king:

It is quite likely that when Ford sold the gage division that it was to B & S. This would have occured in the late 40s or early 50s when the "wiz kids" were reorganizing Ford and selling many of Mr. Ford's pet industries.

In Google I did the following search:
"ford motor company" sale of the johansson gauge division

I did not find what I was looking for but came across the following interesting site:
www.storydomain.com/lincoln/lbch3.htm

.
 

inspector5

Plastic
Joined
Feb 12, 2014
Location
Waterford MI
The First Group at CEJ's Home

060616-1931 EST USA

WoodburnBob:

In 1917 Johansson started manufacture of gage blocks in the United States. The economy was not good in the early 1920s so Johansson contacted Henry Ford in 1923 and started work for him later that year. Prior to joining Ford the blocks were labeled CEJ. At some point the labeling was changed to Ford instead of CEJ.

Where these frist Ford block were made I do not know. The Ford Engineering Labs were not completed until 1925. It should be noted this building was cooled by expanding steam from the adjacent power plant. A picture of the front of the lab is shown at
http://www.hfha.org/homestour02.htm
Henry Ford Heritage Association Celebrates Henry Ford Accomplishments

At some time after the lab was completed the final gage block operations were performed in a temperature controlled room in the basement of the Ford Engineering Labs in Dearborn Michigan.

When Johansson came to the United States he brought along a number of his employees from Sweden.

One of these men was Charlie Anderson. When my dad came to Dearborn in 1926 he found a room to rent at the Anderson home. From then on they were life long friends, and I can remember visiting the Andersons a number of times.

One time in the mid 1940s, probably about 1945, Charlie Anderson invited me to see his work space and how he did the final lapping of a gage block. I saw the comparator he used for checking the blocks. It was totally mechanical and could probably display increments less than 10/1,000,000". I was amazed that such resolution was possible with a mechanical device. For some reason my memory seems to tell me that there was some spiral mechanism that provided the mechanical amplification. Whether a microscope was needed to view the pointer I do not remember.

The point of this background is that to make very accurate blocks one had to have temperature control and the appropriate measurement equipment as well as having techniques to make parallel flat surfaces. To adjust parallelism I believe this was accomplished by the point of pressure while lapping. Measuring equipment was just as important as the other operations. To rebuild worn blocks these would be chrome plated and re-lapped.

.


Hi Bob where did your dad come from. My family came over from Sweden with CEJ to work with Mr. Ford. I know a person in Sweden that is writing the second version of the CEJ Biography. I'm helping him do a little research.
cej.jpg

I attached a picture. I know the man in the middle is Ellstrom, the one on the far right is My Great Great Grandfather Sven Lundquist. Sven's brother is Victor with is second from the left. Abraham Anderson is the farthest to the left. However I don't know who is the person second from the right. Do you have any idea who it might be? I know this is an old thread on this group. Hopefully someone might know who it is. If you stay in touch with the Anderson family maybe they might know.
 

RayJohns

Aluminum
Joined
Sep 13, 2009
Location
West Coast
I attached a picture. I know the man in the middle is Ellstrom, the one on the far right is My Great Great Grandfather Sven Lundquist. Sven's brother is Victor with is second from the left. Abraham Anderson is the farthest to the left. However I don't know who is the person second from the right. Do you have any idea who it might be? I know this is an old thread on this group. Hopefully someone might know who it is. If you stay in touch with the Anderson family maybe they might know.

That's pretty cool that your great, great grandfather was Sven. I was just reading about him here:

A.A Jansson - About / History

I recently purchased a set of vintage Gauge Blocks made by Jansson Gage Co.

Ray
 

neanderthal mach

Cast Iron
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Location
princeton b.c.
Another source of information is the small book "Accurate Tool Work" by C.L. Goodrich and F.A. Stanley, originally copyright 1908 by Hill Publishing, publishers of American Machinist Magazine. Now available as a Lindsay Publications paperback reprint, which is what I have.

Chapters 18 and 19, titled respectively "A new Swedish Combination Gaging System,""Setting, laying out and testing work with the swedish gages" are apparently articles from American Machinist.

The first article states the gages were manufactured by CE Johansson, Eskilstuna, Sweden and sent to American Machinist for inspection by the Gronkvist Drill Chuck Company.

Very happy to see this thread pop back up as I didn't know of it before. Another excellent book by Goodrich & Stanley, Tool and Gauge work copyrighted in 1907 and mines a 1920 edition, but copies don't seem hard to find on Ebay. They have a whole chapter devoted to what I'd assume is the very first set of CEJ gauge blocks in North America at the time. Interesting reading about there speculations of how they might be used in the future once they became more widely available. I'd say they nailed it with there predictions since there now just about an industry wide calibration check for everything else in a shop. At the time of that books writing they had no way of knowing if industry would even start using them. And while I've yet to see prices for gauge block sets from that time period, one can assume they had to be quite expensive.

They also weight tested them to prove there was far more holding them together than just atmospheric air pressure. Although not with 100 kilos, that's impressive. I questioned Mitutoyo about the stability of my standard steel gauge blocks and they said they found that the blocks can and do change up to + - 1um per inch of length per year. For most of us we can't even measure to that level, but it's at least worth knowing about. Since CEJ was so secretive about his finish lapping to final size and flatness I've always wondered just how true that story was of his use of a modified sewing machine is. Yes it's possible, but since his complete process still seems to be unknown then it could have been a story to lead any future competitors in the wrong direction. However it was first done, it was a more than impressive feat of inventiveness.
 

DonnyJ

Plastic
Joined
Apr 17, 2020
"Tool and Gauge work" First Edition was copyrighted in 1922, it includes all the unedited chapters in "Accurate Tool Work" 1908 plus several new added chapters.
 

neanderthal mach

Cast Iron
Joined
Dec 18, 2008
Location
princeton b.c.
Wow, much higher than I'd thought Johansen, thanks. That does make it a bit surprising they got adopted and became more common as quickly as they did. A semi logical guess would be that sales might have been much lower between there invention and the depression and then took off with WW II starting.

And your quite correct DoonyJ, instead of relying on memory I re-checked the copyright date of my copy. 1923 and not 1920 as I said. :(
 

Larry Dickman

Titanium
Joined
Jan 30, 2014
Location
Temecula, Ca
i've noticed over the years most people refer to them as "Joe" blocks.
However, since Carl was Swedish, his name would have been pronounced "Yo-hanson"
So shouldn't they be Yo bocks?
 








 
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