Frame POC

I sure hope my tools really are somewhere in Mt Flood. This business of modelling by candlelight without a square, or even a straight edge is wearing thin after only one evening.

At least I managed to find some syringes and a bottle of MEK that Kyle Gardiner kindly passed my way a few years ago. I’ve been a big fan of MekPak ever since I lived in England, and I thought the raw chemical would be just as good. It turns out, it is quite a bit thinner and therefore harder to control with a syringe. I also seem to be more sensitive to it, and found I was starting to float around the chandelier after only a few minutes.

Even with the makeshift arrangements, however, I threw together the parts from the Cricut in less than an hour. It makes a bijoux frame, with the appropriate recesses through the frame members to accept the springy compensating beams.

The spring design (below) is the particular technical risk that I want to explore with this proof of concept. Sadly, I was unable to find any fine phosphor bronze sheet for the experiment, and so, I will have to use brass to play the part of springs. How I form the shapes in that, given my reduced tool chest, remains as a problem for another day!



8 thoughts on “Frame POC

  1. Hi René,

    Mekpak isn’t actually MEK, but a proprietary blend of solvents. Originally it was indeed the chemical for which it is named, but that was found to be too volatile and aggressive for frequent use.

    That said, I use MEK, but sparingly.


      1. I use a small paintbrush. The thing with MEK is to work with the volatility, as it means you don’t need much to effect a good joint. For detail work, a 000 sized brush is fine. For anything bigger, I use an 00 or 1. For larger laminations I have recently bought some di-limonene, but have yet to try it. This does require good, close-fitting joints: just like soldering metal!

      2. Thanks Simon. Do you have one of those cunning bottle tops that makes a tiny puddle when you dab it with your brush, or do you just live in a cloud of fumes?

  2. Hi Rene…I wonder if the styrene sheet will provide a large enough, and slippery enough, surface so the sprung hex nuts don’t bind? Do you have any depth in that area so you could “build” the surface areas up with a bit of Delrin sheet if needed?

    1. It’s a good question Mark. I believe there is at least a quarter millimetre of clearance designed in; so I think the POC should work as much as I want it to. On the real model, the clearance will be taken up later by a fitted bearing guide, positioned using the connecting rods.

  3. Rene,
    I use MEK exclusively as my model “glue’. I buy in the quart from my local hardware store. The way I keep from smelling the fumes is to pour a small amount into a needle bottle. Squeeze the bottle just slightly and MEK comes out. If the needle gets clogged with styrene, a quick pass with a flame clears the clog. I’ve also tried a paint brush dipped in MEK, but I find I reach needle 10 times out of 10…

    Something along the lines of this.


    I have the bottom one, and the shape makes for a nice controlled squeeze.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.