Wednesday, March 9, 2016

New Leach Treadle Wheel

I had started to make a treadle wheel using scrap maple as a frame, but discovered that the finger jointed and laminated pieces of maple I was using were very susceptible to splitting if exposed to moisture (of which there is plenty in a pottery studio), so I scraped it.

Coming around full circle, I have now made a Leach style treadle wheel almost entirely from steel. It is composed mainly of 3" square tubing and 1.5"x3" rectangular tubing. When finished it will be powder coated, making moisture almost and non-issue.

Here is the initial framework:
Here is the frame with diagonal support added and temporary shaft with bearings aligned:
The shaft was fabricated from two pieces of 1" solid bar stock and two pieces of 1/2" plate. I tack welded the plates together to drill the 1" holes in them so that they are perfectly aligned. Once the two shafts are welded in place the center section of the main shaft is cut out. Doing it this way keeps everything perfectly straight and aligned. You don't want a wobbly oscillating wheel head!
More to come...

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