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Old 03-31-2009, 04:17 PM
pwr pwr is offline
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Seattle
Posts: 6
Default Re: The Classic for channel and pave setting?

I do much the same. However, I do find the heavier piston useful for one aspect of what I do, and that is driving millgrain tools. The line my employer manufactures often has millgrain applied to sometimes rather blunt/heavy edges, and it's a larger size tool (#8), in 18K white gold. That takes a surprising amount of force, in part because the handpiece is pushing in line with the tool shank, while the force needed to drive into the metal is at an angle to that, so much of the hammer force is wasted, unlike with a graver. I could do it with the standard piston, but the carbide one makes it a breeze, and I seldom need to swap out for the original lighter one. By the way, a useful hint if you wish to do millgraining this way. Driving a millgrain tool with a power handpiece is rather more force than the manufacturers of the millgrain tools had in mind, I think. The little axles that the millgrain wheels spin on are mild steel, and they quickly fail/shear when used this way. My fix, so I don't have to keep replacing the tools, is to lightly sand away a bit of the sides of the tip, which not only allows the wheel to get into tighter areas, but removes the peened over ends of those axle pins. So then I can drive them right out. I replace them with a bit of the appropriate size (I think it's a #72, but I'm not sure at the moment) high speed drill bit shank. That, of course, can't be peened over. But we've got a laser welder, so I use that to secure the ends of that new more durable axle to the shank of the tool. Modified this way, these things now only wear out when the wheel itself gets too mucked up over time. If you don't have a laser, a PUK welder would do it too, or you might have to get creative. Don't solder it, I think, unless you can figure a way not only to not freeze up the wheel with solder, but to not mess up the temper of that little wheel. Possible, no doubt, but a pain in the backside. Anyway, hope that helps.
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