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  1. #1
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    Default White metal casting for restoration

    While working on my Pajero restoration project I ran into an issue where there is a white metal bush found in the extension housing of the transfer case. In my case, this bush is well worn and I need to replace it.

    Unfortunately the agents only sell the whole extension housing and not the loose bush. I simply cannot afford the price they are asking as I would rather spend this money on an aircraft ticket and fly somewhere overseas!

    Here you can see that the bush is formed by casting a white metal lining in a steel casing and cutting slots for oil distribution in the bush.












    I have searched high and low and I can obtain a new bush which, when installed will have a too large ID and not match the splined sleeve to go through it. The only option I therefore have is to cast a new white metal lining for the bush. Yeah, you are correct it is also know as casting a Babbit bearing!


    The first step for me was to find all the materials I needed to cast a new white metal lining.

    Here are most of the things I will need.






    I fortunately was able to source some white metal from an engineering shop. Flux I got from a dear friend, uncle Brian, the stainless steel brush required to clean the inside of the steel casing, bought for a small fortune from Pferd. The tinning solder was an issue as nobody sold 100% tin anymore. I was steered into the right direction on a FB group for metal workers and managed to source 97/3 plumbing solder. This contains 97% tin and 3% copper which is ideal for what I want to do.

    The ladle I got on loan from @ghouwens and the tooth brush I had in my stash in the garage.

    The next step was to get a flame thrower ...

    Many moons ago I bought a job lot of gas torches and amongst this was a vintage Cadac gas torch. I dug it out from storage and set out to restore it. It took two evenings as some wise crack decided to fill the valve section with solder ....

    Here it is all cleaned up and fully restored. Why do you always require so many tools for such a small job?







    Also required was a new LPG regulator and 3m of LPG hose. This was bought and I assembled the whole setup during the past few days.

    The very last outstanding part was the steel casing holder so that I can cast the white metal into a stable and well clamped casing.

    It was time to stand back and let Brain do some thinking! I will support him with some coffee!


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  3. #2
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Traveling a bit forward in time we get to the date of 17-01-2021 ... which is today ...

    Brain has had quite a few ideas after we watched quite a few white metal casting (or Babbit casting) videos on DaTjoep.

    Here is the draft design done in FreeSketch.





    Since I have donated all my bits and bobs of metal, I was stuck with nothing to work with. "Greenhouse ..." Brain mumbled.

    Then I remembered. In the greenhouse I built for my one son many moons back was an old builders bucket with some rusty pieces of iron in. I scratched away and returned with this.






    The flatbar was from a geyser I removed in Stellenbosch more than 36 years ago! Time flies does it not?!

    First step was to give the two pieces some love and brush it clean.






    Measuring and cutting the one piece of flat bar I will need as the one holding plate.





    Both pieces cut, ready for use.






    And I measured against the wrong piece of channel iron ....






    Oh well, "Boer makes a plan" and I will use it as it is.

    Finding the center line and marking out the half circle section I want to cut out.










    Marking the center of the circle and punching it so that the compass can get some grip in life.






    With the center marked, I looked at all my hole saws for the correct size. You guessed correctly. I did not have a 44mm diameter hole saw ....

    Oh well, I went through the same issue and steps to make a bearing puller for the Pajero's gearbox. So by know I know what to do. At least this is not spring steel!!

    Do it by hand, the old fashioned way. I scratched out a curve with a compass I restored and which is at least 90 years old.






    Next step was to cut many slots up to the scratched line. Let's play a game for not trespassing over the line!








    And some more ...






    Then cutting the teeth away ...






    And finally breaking the last bits off with a draadtang. I have no idea what a draadtang is in Ingils. Fencing pliers?? You fight and stab each other with pliers?






    Repeat the process for the locking bar and there we are!






    Onto drum sanding. The only way I can do this is to stick a sanding drum into my drill press and jack the RPMs up a bit.






    I clamped the steel piece in a small plank which secures it and allows me very good control.






    And ... off we go! Sanding away.






    Starting to shape!






    Some more sanding and some more sanding and some more sanding and some more sanding ... and first fitting.






    Take away a bit here and a tad there and siedaar,






    The clamping plate fits perfectly!


    Next step was to drill the fastening holes for the holding plate.






    And reaming the holes.







    There we are, ready to be mounted and sanded.






    Mounted and ready to be sanded. Oh yeah, you are right I did mention that did I not?






    Sanding ... and fitting







    Sanding ....... and fitting







    Sanding ................... and fitting






    Sanding .......................................... and fitting







    Yeah, all done and first check if it will work.










    Looks like it will work so onto drilling the mounting holes in the channel iron.






    And it is here where I realised that both the flat bar and the channel iron do not have flat surfaces.











    So onto some more grinding and sanding until I achieved a level surface no light could ever think of penetrating below the straight edge.








    Same for the two plate's underbellies ... underbellies should be the underside of the belly which therefore should be the top??








    A second "let's see if it will work" looksee








    Me thinks it wills works. Brain nods and gives a thumbs up!

    Onto marking out the locking plate and the center dowel's fastening holes.






    Drilled and tapped to M8 ...






    And a third "let's see if it will work" looksee.








    A test run shows that it will work very well and can actually hold the steel casing solidly in place. ooooops ... sorry ....

    To prevent the clamp from rusting in future I added some phosphoric acid and kept it in place with a cloth. It will now stand overnight and hopefully will be sealed and ready for use tomorrow!






    Brain is happy, I am happy and so is the quality inspector. The Chow Chow if you do not follow my lathe thread!





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  5. #3
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Interesting, the cutting and filling bit.

    I would have cain drilled it and then file it.

    Nice work.
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by jfh View Post
    Interesting, the cutting and filling bit.

    I would have cain drilled it and then file it.

    Nice work.
    About all the knife makers do that when they start cutting the profile from the flat bar.
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    Question Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by Spiceman View Post
    About all the knife makers do that when they start cutting the profile from the flat bar.
    Okay, thanks. Just a new thing I learned.

    I was taught to chain drill by a A/C sheet metal worker.
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  10. #6
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    On your first post I thought to myself "boetie jy vat'n laaang kans"

    Then I saw the rest, you are not a boetie anymore rather a toppie and one that has the necessary skill and patience to pull this off. Please continue sharing I think you might jus pull this impossible task off. Keeping fingers crossed for you
    Henk
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Maybe you can first pickle the piece of pipe to remove most of the contamination, or is that only done on non-ferrous metals?

  13. #8
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    I am so glad you got it right although I'm quite upset that tappitalk didn't tell me this thread is cooking. I was lucky to get the link again on the lathe thread.
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  14. #9
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Theres nothing in my workshop that can measure to 0.0025mm..I wonder if this couldnt be done in a lathe using a very course thread.Or how is rifling done in a rifle barrel.?

  15. #10
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    Theres nothing in my workshop that can measure to 0.0025mm..I wonder if this couldnt be done in a lathe using a very course thread.Or how is rifling done in a rifle barrel.?
    The correct way is in a lathe with a thread cutting clutch mechanism. Uncle Brian tried to explain to me how it works, which is interesting. Alas I have never seen something like this so I can only imagine what it looks like!

  16. #11
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by plunger View Post
    Theres nothing in my workshop that can measure to 0.0025mm..I wonder if this couldnt be done in a lathe using a very course thread.Or how is rifling done in a rifle barrel.?
    Mygoggie, sorry for deliberately taking your thread off topic.

    Plunger, rifling is don in one of three ways. It can be cut, buttoned or hammer forged.
    Hammer forging uses a former which looks somewhat like a very long bullet would look at the moment it comes out of the barrel and before it runs into a concrete wall. This is inserted into a thick-walled tube with a inside diameter slightly larger than the final size, and this tube is then hammered down onto the former. Clearly not suitable for this purpose.
    Button rifling is formed by using a similar former to hammer-forging (but typically ground from Tungsten Carbide) which is forced through a slightly smaller ID tube, often by hydraulic pressure. Again, not going to help here.

    The above two methods are currently the most common as although the machines are expensive, they are the most suited to mass production.

    Lastly, there is cut rifling, which can be divided into two sub-methods, the first being broaching and the second single-point cutting.
    This final one is the only one which can conceivably be used for this purpose, but even that is unlikely. I actually own a single-point rifling machine (the first machine used in this country to manufacture barrels). Imagine a lathe with the head and tail stocks fixed, and a chuck mounted on the carriage in such a way that it is rotated by a rack which is connected to the taper-turning attachment. The carriage is hand-powered, and when it moves, the chuck turns at a speed proportional to the movement. The tool (shown in the attached picture) is stationary, held in the headstock via a long rod and is guided by the barrel, the cutting depth can be adjusted by a hand-wheel on the tail stock.
    As you can imagine though, such a machine cannot achieve the angle/pitch required for this job.

    Obviously there are much more modern options, but the only company I know of currently making barrels in SA is Truvelo Manufacturing, who as far as I know use the button method, and possibly also hammer-forging now.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by Peter Connan; 2021/02/19 at 07:57 AM.
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  18. #12
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Mygoggie, were it me, a cerfully-shaped block of wood attached just ahead of the cutting edge...
    Last edited by Peter Connan; 2021/02/19 at 08:30 AM.
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  19. #13
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Connan View Post
    Mygoggie, were it me, a cerfully-shaped block of wood attached just ahead of the cutting edge...
    Great minds think alike. This is exactly what I am planning to do.


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  21. #14
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Connan View Post
    Mygoggie, sorry for deliberately taking your thread off topic.

    Plunger, rifling is don in one of three ways. It can be cut, buttoned or hammer forged.
    Hammer forging uses a former which looks somewhat like a very long bullet would look at the moment it comes out of the barrel and before it runs into a concrete wall. This is inserted into a thick-walled tube with a inside diameter slightly larger than the final size, and this tube is then hammered down onto the former. Clearly not suitable for this purpose.
    Button rifling is formed by using a similar former to hammer-forging (but typically ground from Tungsten Carbide) which is forced through a slightly smaller ID tube, often by hydraulic pressure. Again, not going to help here.

    The above two methods are currently the most common as although the machines are expensive, they are the most suited to mass production.

    Lastly, there is cut rifling, which can be divided into two sub-methods, the first being broaching and the second single-point cutting.
    This final one is the only one which can conceivably be used for this purpose, but even that is unlikely. I actually own a single-point rifling machine (the first machine used in this country to manufacture barrels). Imagine a lathe with the head and tail stocks fixed, and a chuck mounted on the carriage in such a way that it is rotated by a rack which is connected to the taper-turning attachment. The carriage is hand-powered, and when it moves, the chuck turns at a speed proportional to the movement. The tool (shown in the attached picture) is stationary, held in the headstock via a long rod and is guided by the barrel, the cutting depth can be adjusted by a hand-wheel on the tail stock.
    As you can imagine though, such a machine cannot achieve the angle/pitch required for this job.

    Obviously there are much more modern options, but the only company I know of currently making barrels in SA is Truvelo Manufacturing, who as far as I know use the button method, and possibly also hammer-forging now.
    This is very interesting. Thanks for sharing this information @Peter Connan!

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  23. #15
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Ai. Sometimes it pours. Good luck. Aanhouer wen. Ons staan almal agter jou en moedig jou aan.
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    I cleaned everything and made some refinements to the clamping plate to accommodate the smaller diameter casing. Taking my time to seal everything well, resulted in this ...










    A very neat looking casting!

    A bit of filing to remove the excess white metal and we have a very good casting!








    Onto making the second casting. First step is to get all parts to temperature. This takes quite a while and some patience is a virtue here ..







    I had to get the Boss to come and help as the final casting steps cannot be done by only one person. At least she is still smiling!





    That looks purty good!






    A bit of wire brushing to remove all the exhaust sealer and ...







    And another very good casting!






    Ringing of a white metal casting is a test to show that no cracks exists in the casting. A dull thud is the sound you do not want to here, so this casting is all good!

    Click the image to listen!





    Brain is still working on the lathe's wiring design and also the grooving of the bush ...


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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Looks like you've done it before
    There is never a right time to do the wrong thing and never a wrong time to do the right thing!

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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Quote Originally Posted by Francois Theron View Post
    Looks like you've done it before
    Too many times!

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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Good work. Many years ago I had a Datsun P510 that needed a new extension housing bush. I should have known you then.
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  33. #20
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    Default Re: White metal casting for restoration

    Uncle Brian helped me out again today by cutting the newly cast bushes to tad undersize and drill the hole.

    Looking good even if I say so myself!







    Yes Guy, I can also do the double casing shot!






    Tomorrow I will take the transfer case and the bush to Loftie to have installed and machined.






    Slowly getting there!


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