A newlt-discovered hand-operated shaper
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  1. #1
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    Oct 2009
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    Default A newlt-discovered hand-operated shaper

    An "interesting" little hand-operated shaper has just emerged: http://www.lathes.co.uk/alexander-shaper/ ... and something rather more prosaic: http://www.lathes.co.uk/rapidor/ and http://www.lathes.co.uk/oldak/

    My best wishes, Tony.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Sussex, England
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    That Alexander shaper is an interesting device although its questionable how useful the ability to swivel the operating axis would be in practice. Sounds good on the specification sheet tho'.

    Looking at the brochure pages in the section on the morphologically similar, and presumably ancestral, Rapide-Lime shaper its clear that the Rapide-Lime machine was designed so the head could be removed from the base and re-mounted more appropriately for in-situ machining and special purpose jobs. Sort of like a shaper equivalent to a Versa-Mill. Assuming the machine was not primarily designed to do all its work on the standard baseplate the restricted vertical envelope becomes much less of a problem. With an easily demountable head more vertical space can easily be got with suitable spacers and longer bolts. The standard baseplate looks well suited to producing suitable spacers and the limited vertical envelope is of no great moment for that particular job. Lifting the head via spacers may well be more rigid than the angle plate at the front arrangement but the maximum depth that can be easily cut is clearly restricted to the tool slide travel. The common slide up and down angle plate theoretically allows deeper work to be tackled but as most such machines lacked a controlled screw feed for the vertical movement this isn't the easiest of tasks to do accurately.

    I wonder if the Alexander, and Robblak, were also intended to be capable of use with the shaper proper removed from the base? The fixings employed on the Alexander look to make re-location a relatively simple matter. I'm surprised that there is no provision to mount the head further forward on the base so that work located by the vertical slots on the front falls usefully within the ram stroke. Given such re-location an angle plate on the front would be an easy way of getting more vertical envelope.


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