Drafting machine arm

Drafting machine arm DEFAULT

Introduction: Drafting Machine

This is an instructable on making your own drafting machine. This is a drawing aid that mounts to any desk, and will give you a moving set of rulers that will keep to a right angle in relation to your board. It's not hard to make one, and it's a huge help for hand drafting. These can be made from any material, and since I'm going to add CNC capability to mine I used metal and I have space on the elbow piece for servo motors. I hope to post another instructable soon on how to make one of these draw or cut on its own from vector files. I made this all at the TechShop, and so can you.

Step 1:

Get the dimensions of the board you plan to mount this to.
The length of each of your four arm bars should be an inch longer than half the diagonal length of the board. The shape of your pieces makes no difference so long as your joint holes are exactly as shown. Also, keeping the arms straight gives a wider range of motion.

Step 2:

Decide beforehand whether you want your arms to be perpendicular to one another or angled. You can make the angle of the top two bars different so long as you also make the shoulder joints at the corresponding angle in relation to the board. Either design will still allow your square to remain perpendicular to the top of the board itself. The reason one might choose diagonal is to give the arm a greater range of motion.

Step 3:

Cut your arms, elbow, hand and shoulder parts. Precision is very important here, and remember to have each pair of holes the same distance apart. Secure each piece tightly, but with some ability to move. I recommend lock washers, or the short two-piece wide head screws I used on the shoulder and elbow. Of critical importance is eliminating any slippage from your joints. If they have any room to move, the angle of your square will not be 90 degrees.

Step 4:

You can cut two pieces for the shoulder, with a larger hole at the top so that you can use them to clamp onto a table or board by fastening them together with a nut and bolt.

Step 5:

You can mount different tools on the hand, rulers, a square, or a different drawing accessory.

Now go ahead and draft your next project!

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  1. 05-21-2017, 03:22 AM#1
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  2. 05-21-2017, 07:45 AM#2
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    Not sure what you mean by "not stable"?

    Do you mean the clutch slips in certain positions but not in others? That would be kind of odd.

    I have several drafting machines though none of your brand.
    Generally the detent and the 2 clutches are separate functions. There will be a clutch to set the scales. Basically, rotate the big knob to free the index and rotate to put the scale in a detent, say -0-. Probably every 15 deg. but it could be other. Then with the index solidly in a detent, find the clutch lever that lets you rotate the scale head so the scales are horizontal and vertical. Set the scales, lock that clutch.

    next, try rotating the detent out of -0-, (H/V) to say 7° using the scale, now find the clutch that will lock and hold this.

    (Note: If the clutch that locks the head to the scale instead of letting it detent is currently engaged, you will have to find and release it to do the above steps.)

    Once you have identified those 3 functions, you can determine which clutch to adjust and probably start to get an inkling of "how" to do it from inspection.

    Another thought - if what you meant by "not stable" is that the detent does not engage fully at some points, then you probably have to clean the fuzz out of it, or give it a shot of penetrating oil to loosen some gum in that area? Usually just wiggling the knob will cure it, though.

    smt

  3. 05-21-2017, 08:00 AM#3
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    its sad but i have seen a lot of drafting tables go in the scrap lugger. engineer would be embarrassed to use as everything is CAD now. even if engineer did a drawing that way he would get criticism from other engineers for using it

  4. 05-21-2017, 08:12 AM#4
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    I'm not a professional CAD person or engineer so I find it much faster to noodle away sketching designs on paper first before CADing em. Personally, I'd like to have a vertical drafts table like the OP's friends. Old fashioned? Yup!

    Lucky7

  5. 05-21-2017, 08:17 AM#5
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7View Post
    I'm not a professional CAD person or engineer so I find it much faster to noodle away sketching designs on paper first before CADing em. Personally, I'd like to have a vertical drafts table like the OP's friends. Old fashioned? Yup!

    Lucky7
    most CAD you have to do a tutorial following a book or ebook. then it is 100x easier to do CAD. literally not do tutorial and you can be bad and slow at CAD for decades. i have also done tutorial and after a few days i could do CAD on my own. many different programs i have done each having to do or learn the tutorials first. if i had no tutorial literally many programs i could not figure out how to use software ever. too many hidden features

  6. 05-21-2017, 08:50 AM#6
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    Making a living with a generic one

  7. 05-21-2017, 09:10 AM#7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DMF_TomBView Post
    engineer would be embarrassed to use as everything is CAD now.
    I'm in the middle of engineering school right now, got "certified" in AutoCAD in highschool and last semster had a 3D modeling class with Creo.

    I'd love to have that drafting machine myself. Really should practice my engineering/architerual handwriting. Never quite got the hang of it unfortunately.

  8. 05-21-2017, 05:47 PM#8
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    Quote Originally Posted by alskdjfhgView Post
    I'd love to have that drafting machine myself. Really should practice my engineering/architerual handwriting. Never quite got the hang of it unfortunately.
    Matt -

    The OP machine is a beauty. I'm one of the last of the slide rule engineers - graduated in 1970. And I actually did much more complex drawings in the 2 years of drafting I took in high school than I did in college. I was never great at lettering - and arrow heads gave me fits - but then I had a very demanding high school teacher. But it paid off later. And I was always amazed at the engineers I ran into over the years who could not draw at all - nor read a print. Not many, but they do exist.

    I just enjoy using a board - have a 60s vintage in the shop that is a refugee from the IR plant that used to be here years ago, surplussed when they went CAD. I'm technically literate on a computer but just seem to enjoy it more on a board and for me it helps the thinking/designing process.

    But then a retired engineer does not have to make rate anymore, nor please anyone but myself when it comes to the drawings.

    Dale

  9. 05-21-2017, 06:09 PM#9
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    I sold my A0 drawing board - parallel motion only, but still have my Rotring Rapid A3 Rotring Rapid Drafting Board A3 52243 + Drawing Head 522345 | What's it worth

    I can't recall how much but I know it was a lot of money when I bought it, around about 1972, virtually ''had'' to have it for my apprenticeship Tech College homework, .....along with the Rotring pens.

    alskdfhg I wouldn't worry about the lettering too much, .....there used to be a saying (and not without foundation) along the lines of ''good neat clear lettering and numerals? - this drawing will be rubbish.''


    Anyone notice how the tracing girls in the drawing offices always used to be a bit broad in the beam
    Last edited by Limy Sami; 05-22-2017 at 05:54 AM. Reason: tyx fipo

  10. 05-22-2017, 04:32 AM#10
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    Quote Originally Posted by stephen thomasView Post
    Not sure what you mean by "not stable"?

    Do you mean the clutch slips in certain positions but not in others? That would be kind of odd.

    I have several drafting machines though none of your brand.
    Generally the detent and the 2 clutches are separate functions. There will be a clutch to set the scales. Basically, rotate the big knob to free the index and rotate to put the scale in a detent, say -0-. Probably every 15 deg. but it could be other. Then with the index solidly in a detent, find the clutch lever that lets you rotate the scale head so the scales are horizontal and vertical. Set the scales, lock that clutch.

    next, try rotating the detent out of -0-, (H/V) to say 7° using the scale, now find the clutch that will lock and hold this.

    (Note: If the clutch that locks the head to the scale instead of letting it detent is currently engaged, you will have to find and release it to do the above steps.)

    Once you have identified those 3 functions, you can determine which clutch to adjust and probably start to get an inkling of "how" to do it from inspection.

    Another thought - if what you meant by "not stable" is that the detent does not engage fully at some points, then you probably have to clean the fuzz out of it, or give it a shot of penetrating oil to loosen some gum in that area? Usually just wiggling the knob will cure it, though.

    smt
    ok thanks for your feedback

    I am not familar with usage of the drafting machine, its a fantastic item and hope an engineer or architect may end up with it

    just to discuss further, the machine is stable/solid

    so the black knob with rulers attached to it should rotate which puts pressure against the board and holds it in a position or do you do work with it all over the board and just leave it sitting in a position like in the photo's?

    any video links on how they operate would be of a great help

    thnks again
    sapphire120

  11. 05-22-2017, 08:02 AM#11
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    It sounds like I totally misunderstood what you meant by "not stable"

    It sounds like what you really mean is that you want to place the arm in any position, remove your hands, and it will stay there, balanced?

    If that is all you mean, it probably is not going to happen "everywhere". Just the nature of things. (Menaing someone could have designed one such, but the extra cost would be more than what a "normal" machine cost at the time.)

    No, don't press on the black/dk brown knob. You can use that for a hand grip fo moving. On all 3 of my different syle and brand machines, the hand knob is rotated to release the angle detent, to rotate the scale head without losing the -0- position for return. I assume it is the same on yours. On all of mine, there is a clutch release or other facility to adjust the scales to horizontal/vertical when the detent is in any position, presumably -0-. There is a separate clutch mechanism to lock the rotating head with the knob to any degree other than the detent positions.

    I thought you must be having a problem with one of those. On re-reading, I get the impression that is not what you were asking. Apologies.

    Beautiful machine, BTW. My 2 big board machines (a K & E, and a Vemco) are parallel track machines with the same style scale head as yours, running up and down (& lockable) on the vertical track. The smaller machine (Universal "Boardmaster") that I grew up with in grade and HS is a broken arm style very similar to yours. Except mine is based on steel bands inside the arms tensioned around wheels at the joints and scale head (you can't see them, just describing the principle). Yours is based on the parallelogram/pantographic principle.

    smt

  12. 05-22-2017, 08:12 AM#12
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    Like some others I prefer the board and drafting machine to CAD. We had earlier versions of different CAD programs where I worked. Our original was Auto Trol. It was a great program but relied on a mainframe. When the mainframe went away we switched to Auto-Cad. In reality the early versions had less features than the old mainframe based program, and were not user friendly.

    At work I had a PC based version of Auto Cad for several years. I also bought a drafting table and return for use at home. At that time everyone was switching to CAD so boards and machines were a dime a dozen. I purchased a 72" Mayline board with an adjustable base, and a desk return, a Mutoh drafting machine, over a dozen different scales, a drafting light, and all the tools and supplies I could fit into my truck for $50.00. At the time just the table and desk were still listing for over $3,700.00 in the Mayline catalog. Today the only ones in the catalog are a few stand alone boards meant for artists and layout work.

    When I retired the Auto-Cad couldn't be updated because it needed to be connected to the corporate network. After a while I went back to using the board. Fortunately for me drafting classes were a requirement as a freshman engineering student. It was a skill that was left dormant for many years. However just like riding a bicycle it all comes back quickly. I still love the board and still use it today. Now that the shop is getting over crowded I sometimes think I should have purchased a smaller board.

  13. 05-22-2017, 08:38 AM#13
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    A little off topic but I was taught to call that a drafting arm. A drafting machine,at least I in my local was the type that has a rail on top and a vertical rail that slides on it. The head / scales slide in the vertical rail.

    JR

  14. 05-22-2017, 11:35 AM#14
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    that is a beautiful piece, I still use my Vemco with the Vemco lamp and prefer to work out designs on paper and then pass it onto Solidworks guy. about 6 years ago I had a large counterweighted Hamilton Standard drawing table with the machine but no scales that I got 450 bucks for. But that was a very long shot.
    this may be more salable as restaurant art than a functional drafting machine,

  15. 05-22-2017, 01:57 PM#15
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    Quote Originally Posted by alskdjfhgView Post
    I'm in the middle of engineering school right now, got "certified" in AutoCAD in highschool and last semster had a 3D modeling class with Creo.

    I'd love to have that drafting machine myself. Really should practice my engineering/architerual handwriting. Never quite got the hang of it unfortunately.
    I have a drafting arm you are welcome to.. It's been in the shop for years might need some cleaning up.. Just the arm, no table, have to make your own.

  16. 05-22-2017, 06:31 PM#16
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    Quote Originally Posted by swatkinsView Post
    I have a drafting arm you are welcome to..
    Cool, thanks.

    No idea when id be able to get it. Getting wisdom teeth pulled Wendsday and then summer classes start June 6th.

  17. 05-23-2017, 04:55 AM#17
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    thanks for info on this, i know it has been well maintained over the years and I have the confidence to sell it knowing everything is fine

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New Professional Drafting Machine! With Protractor And Articulated Arm!

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In this era of advanced workstation PCs and computer aided drafting and manufacturing (CAD-CAM), a traditional mechanical drafting machine is still a very useful tool in technical drawing used in many engineering offices and drafting rooms.

Using an Indusrial Drawing Board

A drafting machine consists of an articulated protractor head that allows an angular rotation and a pair of scales attached at a right angle for rotation of the table. Drafting machine work is achieved with some combination of other instruments including a drafting compass, T-square, triangle, and drafting mechanical pencils. These tools are used to measure all angles and to draw horizontal and vertical lines.

Standard drafting machines are the universal type and the track type. Both have multiple, different graduation scales. They are rigidly built machines and can accurately hold layout projects. They also provide a visible view of the drawing beneath. Graduations and numbers are on the underside of a scale, which helps to avoid parallax distortion. The graduation scales are protected by raising the rib to prevent capillary action when inking. Scales are provided from 32 and 50 parts to the inch. A standard drafting machine has a universal chuck to accommodate other drafting machines, available in 12" and 18 " lengths, with the graduation parts to the inch. Standard drafting machines come in different sizes, with many having full protective plastic dust covers large enough for both the machine and drawing surfaces.

Track-type drafting machines are complete with a drawing board that features a modern compact, precision design. Functional drawing boards with a precision ball bearing, vertical sliding track drafting system and a brake lever on vertical sliding track offer three positions. Double action hinged system allows the head and scales to be tilled vertically from the broad surface. It will also compensate for any broad irregularities. 150 degree drawing head with two sets of Plexiglas scales is included- one set is metric and the other is in full and half inch graduations. The tracking drafting machines are designed to have an easy rotation of the protractor head with a quick release mechanism when depressed by a thumb. They also have index settings at comfortable 15 degree with intermediate lock and good adjustment

Drafting Work Station - Components

A standard mechanical drafting station will comprise some fluorescent lights, a locking desk with a see-through pull-up top, a built in lock with key, a power strip, drafting board mat, board riser, steel backstop, top support, and laminated work surfaces. These work stations are designed for typical technical drafting operations. Components are available for different configurations of the stations.

Helpful Tips for Users

Mechanical drafting is highly skillful. New users will have the important task of developing drawings needed to manufacture a wide array of mechanical devices and machineries. The occupation is a good choice for individuals who are mechanically inclined and detailed oriented or new users wanting to make careers in mechanical drafting. Drafting is a specialist career in technical drawing that solely concentrates on defining blue print of machines and components used by engineers on a daily basis.

It can help users develop solid drafting techniques, skills, both knowledge of machine components, manufacturing processes and applications. Users can also develop basic drafting skills and learn the different terminologies used in the drafting processes, including projections and geometrical methods. This core mechanical drafting will teach new users how to draw, interpret, and present orthographic and isometric designs of mechanical products and their individual components.

Mechanical drafting focuses on dimensioning and tolerances, sectioning, fastenings, and pictorial drawings. Mechanical drafting goes into further instruction regarding areas like mechanical and structural detailing, contour mapping, electrical-piping-fluid power schematics and kinematics.

To help and support new users in a mechanical drafting career, new users will learn how to operate the drafting machine, identify drafting tools, be able to set square paper, understand the use of scales (like horizontal and vertical types), and arrange title blocks. The user must also be familiar with protractor dial/arm adjustment and use the mechanical drafting machine to produce technical drawings and other conditions in force relating to the job description.

Conclusion

The mechanical drafting machine has long been a conventional (table) method used in many industries to produce technical drawings of mechanical parts and components of mechanical system. They evolved to use a predictable, combined set of specific tools so any draftsman would know what to expect to have available when using one. Today employers and drafters are looking for computer aided design because it is both versatile and fast in drafting production. However, there are still many of these machines around, and they still find use. Both the CNC/CAD/CAM technician and the draftsperson today provide a company with manufacturing support.

References

Mechanical drafting www.draftingzone.com

Vemco Drafting Products www.vemcocorp.com

Drafting Steals www.draftingsteal.com

Image: Courtesy of Vemco

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Drafting Machine Components

Drafting Machine Components

RPMG(Structural)

(OP)

Hey all, this should be a fun one. I have a drafting machine that I intend to repair. Some components work, and some don't:



  1. Probably a horizontal slide stop. Does not work
  2. Embedded metal plate that slides. I believe that 2 locking screws are missing.
  3. Working vertical slide stop.
  4. Dial lettered V at current location, lettered H at 270 degrees.
  5. Working rotation lock.
  6. Some sort of lock.
  7. Some sort of lock.
  8. Toggle switch on the handle.
  9. Dial 5'-5 degrees. I assume this is a memory device.
  10. I can't count. Call this a placeholder.
  11. At the top, there is a working switch to calibrate the vertical angle.
  12. There are strings below, which are probably related to 1 and 2, but are too loose to be effective.
This is an open ended topic. The goal is for better definition and to repair it, but I don't think that should limit the discussion.

I also have acquired an electric eraser, which is awesome.

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New Professional Drafting Machine! With Protractor And Articulated Arm!

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Seller:tooltime_tommy✉️(10,879)99.5%, Location:Camarillo, California, Ships to: US, Item:372303521624New Professional Drafting Machine! With Protractor And Articulated Arm!. This professional drafting machine combines a protractor with an articulated arm for precise layouts. Layout guides stay in place yet move easily when needed. The drafting machine clamps to any drawing board or table up to 1-3/8 in. thick. Protractor arms are made of 1/2 in. steel tubingTable sold separatelyClamps to any drawing board or table up to 1-3/8 in. thick Table sold separately.Condition:New, Restocking Fee:20%, Item must be returned within:30 Days, Refund will be given as:Money Back, Return shipping will be paid by:Buyer, All returns accepted:Returns Accepted, MPN:1815, UPC:792363018159

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Drafting machine

Tool for technical drawing

Drafting machine attached to a drawing board.

A drafting machine is a tool used in technical drawing, consisting of a pair of scales mounted to form a right angle on an articulated protractor head that allows an angular rotation.[1][2]

The protractor head (two scales and protractor mechanism) is able to move freely across the surface of the drawing board, sliding on two guides directly or indirectly anchored to the drawing board. These guides, which act separately, ensure the movement of the set in the horizontal or vertical direction of the drawing board, and can be locked independently of each other.

Drawing board with a parallel rule, a precursor to drafting machines.
Ercole Marelli offices, Sesto San Giovanni. Photo by Paolo Monti, 1963.

The drafting machine was invented by Charles H. Little in 1901 (U.S. Patent No. 1,081,758), and he founded the Universal Drafting Machine Company in Cleveland, Ohio, to manufacture and sell the instrument.[3]

Drafting machines were present in the design offices of European companies since the 1920s. The Encyclopædia Britannica explicitly specifies 1930 as the year this tool was introduced, but an advertisement of "Memorie di architettura pratica" from 1913 places it twenty years before this date—at least in Italy.

In the older design sets, the movement of the protractor head was assured by a pantograph system that could keep the head in the same angular position throughout its range of motion. The arms were balanced by a system of counterweights or springs.

Typically, the machine is mounted on a drawing board with a hard and smooth surface, anchored to a base that allows its tilting and lifting. Thus, the realization of a drawing can be achieved in the most convenient way on a working surface that can be tilted at any angle from horizontal to vertical.

There are special versions for A0 double-sized boards, to make large drawings, or copying-boards with background illumination, which have all that is necessary to provide specific support.

With the drafting machine one can perform a series of drawing operations that otherwise could only be achieved with a much more complex use of the classic rulersquare and protractor, as, for example, drawing parallel lines, orthogonal lines, inclined lines according to a preset angle, measurement of angles, etc.

With the development of computer-aided design (CAD), the use of drafting machines, especially in the professional sector, has drastically declined, supplanted first by pen plotters, and then by large-format inkjet printers.

Notes[edit]

Sours: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drafting_machine


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