Tool, Have you used one?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2014: Tool, Have you used one?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Pat Kelly on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 11:05 am:

Got this in a box of treasures. Have any of you used one? It's a commutator cutter. PK


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 11:51 am:

I've been looking at the pics a lot but I'm not sure exactly how it works.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Pat Kelly on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:10 pm:

Here are some drawings. I'm missing a few small parts. PK


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Ken Todd on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:18 pm:

When you said commutator cutter I thought you were talking about timers, being that Ford called them commutators.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:36 pm:

Lol maybe that's part of what is throwing me off. I still saw the drawings and thought "What in the world does this have to do with the timer?" Lol, I had never heard the "commutator" before until I started fooling with Ts. So if it isn't a Ford Roller Timer, what else can "commutator" refer to?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:37 pm:

Ah ha! Google is my friend. I'm tracking now. =)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Dewey, N. California on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:38 pm:

There are different versions of this tool. They are pretty clever, a way to center the armature and turn it, with a very fine thread to advance the cutting tool, and some come with an under cutter feature (to cut the insulating material below the contact surface). I think I used one decades ago, but now I have a lathe, so it's just a "curiosity" in my garage now. Mine is made to clamp in a vise, which I think all the different versions do too. Most folks had vices (workshop ones, not personality ones!) but few had lathes, and some folks didn't have electricity!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman - Sumner,WA on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:39 pm:

Generator commutator.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Pat Kelly on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 12:52 pm:

Sorry for the confusion. I always call the Ford commutator a timer. The earliest drawings I can find of this tool is 1939. The brass lever swings out and releases the thread so the cutter can be pulled back for another cut. Interesting tool. PK


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Stan Howe Helena, Montana on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 01:30 pm:

Cool! I have a similar one in a box with the original instructions from about the same era.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Harold Schwendeman - Sumner,WA on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 01:50 pm:

I've never seen one of those tools before, but from looking at the drawings, I think I have a basic idea how it must work.

The generator armature is supported in a stationary position and the "tool" is clamped onto the "commutator" end of the shaft by the part of the tool that looks like a collett. The "brass lever" is then pulled out to engage a "follower" to follow the screw thread portion of the tool as the tool is rotated around the stationary armature, and the cutting tool is adjusted so as to take a light cut off of the commutator segments, slowly advancing across the full width of the commutator until all segments have been "resurfaced". I guess you could say that it works opposite of the way a lathe works. Instead of the lathe being stationary and "the work" being turned, this tool is like a lathe and cutting tool being rotated around the stationary work while the screw thread portion of the tool advances the cutting tool across the commutator segments.

It appears to me that the "missing small parts" are used to clean out the spaces between the commutator segments after the tool has been used to "clean up" the surface of the commutator. To do this, I would presume that the cutting tool is replaced with a slightly different type of tool, that is lined up with each "space" between commutator segments, and as the lever (missing) is actuated, the tool makes a pass through the space between two commutator segments to clean it out, and the tool is then slightly rotated to the next space, and so on until all spaces have been cleaned out.

Anyway, that's the way it looks to me! Neat tool! For what it's worth,.......harold


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Spaziano, Bellflower, CA. on Wednesday, November 05, 2014 - 02:49 pm:

From what I can see, it uses a standard 5C collet to clamp the tool to the armature shaft.

These are readily available in a wide variety of I.D. sizes in both standard and metric thus making it useable on any diameter armature shaft that fits within the 5C collet range.

5C collets can be purchased at most machinist supply outlets like Enco.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James Michael Rogers on Thursday, November 06, 2014 - 07:29 am:

Mike, according to the patent drawings, the collet is an R8 style. 5C collets are threaded externally but, R8 collets are threaded internally, like this shows. Everything you say about the 5C is applicable to the R8.


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