Good news, I recently added some anti-spam measures to the Stagecraft Wiki, and as a result have re-enabled anonymous editing.  This means you don’t need to login to share your brilliant ideas!  (Hint, hint)

I’ve also added a few more pages.  Our upcoming show has a grand piano, so I’ve thrown some research up at piano dimensions.  I’ll add some cad blocks for the various sizes in a bit.

# Littlest Track Dog (mark II)

This is the mark II design for the tiny track dog I posted earlier.   This version features a sandwich style construction, which has several benifits over the mark I design.

Securing the aircraft cable through this dog should be vastly easier than the first version.  It’s as simple as two set screws, a few copper inserts, and four flat head machine screws.  Machining the cable path in the first version wasn’t too hard, but cleaning meeting two small, blind holes 135 degrees apart did prove a challenge.  As a result, threading the cable through dog #1 was an exercise in aggravation, something I do not care to repeat.

You’ll notice the top part of the sandwich is steel, which allows us to weld the knife in place through a milled slot.  Since we’re still waiting on details of the tracking furniture, we can build the dog now and leave the knife design for later.  Also, dog #1 featured a removable knife, which is nifty, but seriously impractical at such a small size.

Speaking of size, this dog will be the same as the last one – 15/32″ x 3/4″ x 3 1/2″.

The shop should get one of these built within the next few weeks.  Perhaps I’ll find enough time to slink away from the office and do it myself.  In either case, I’ll post an update, and let you know if all my wishful thinking was for naught.

# Littlest Dog Evar?

Is this the littlest track dog ever?  Perhaps.  Either way, it’s sooo cute!  This prototype track dog measures in at 3/4″ x 15/32″ x 3.5″ and is milled from a solid chunk of UHMW.  (Ignore the oily grime, its fresh off the bridgeport.) The 1/8″ aircraft cable is secured with two set screws in the opposite face of the dog.  I’m thinking the mark 2 will feature a sandwich style construction with a fixed knife.  Stay tuned for later revisions to this project.

# Weld-Bearings

You need small, ad hoc, weld-on bearings?  Check this out.  Use a plastic bushing, a shaft collar and a cone-point socket set screw.  Weld the shaft collar over a hole, and keep the plastic bushing in place with the set screw (the cone point is key).  Feel free to add a little threadlocker if you’re paranoid.  Works like a charm.

# Roll Bender Wheels

Danger Will Robinson! The cast iron wheels pictured below are the ones that were spec’ed in Keith Cornelius’s 1997 Tech Expo articleAn Inexpensive, Human-Powered Roll-Former. (Grainer part numbers are #3G262 and #3G263.)

Obviously they’ve changed a little bit since 1997; the new “feature” is a crown to the surface of the wheel. Unless you’re looking to mangle your steel whilst bending, I suggest you find flatter wheels.

I suggest finding flatter iron wheels through Mcmaster-Carr. Their 4” wheels are comparable in price, though Mcmaster’s 5” wheels are around $30 while Grainger’s 5” are around$13.

# Pivoting Success!

Update for “Pivot Puck” post. — We installed the pivoting masking wall today, and it was a smashing success. Pivot pucks are definitely going into our stock inventory.

# More Pivoting…

Continuing in the pivoting vein, these are the pivot points we are using for the top of the masking walls I mentioned above. If you haven’t seen the half cheesebouroughs before, they are hard to beat when attaching stuff to pipe.

edit: Oh yeah, you can find them at BMI.

# Pivot Puck

We need to pivot a few masking walls for our upcoming production of Hughie. So this little UHMW bugger was born; I like to call it a pivot puck. Screw the puck to a surface and place a shaft in it (our shaft is welded to plate steel that bears on the top surface of the puck) and you’ve got an instant pivot point! (Just make sure the screw heads are countersunk below the surface.) It’s so sexy that it may become a regular stock item in our inventory. I will post an update after we use them for the show.