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Building a FM 118 crankshaft?


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  #21  
Old 11-04-2013, 12:40:54 AM
Jason W Jason W is offline
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

I'm watching this thread with keen interest as we have an issue with a crank. This particular crank is not one you're gonna find anywhere. We tossed around several options and talked to a lot of people. The material is just mild steel apparently and I welded it very slowly with 7018 rod. It turns true when I got done but I'm not totally sure I trust it. As I said, finding a replacement would be impossible. The only other option we would have is to make one but that in itself would be very difficult as well due to the output and front end of the crank.



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Old 11-04-2013, 09:07:10 AM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

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Originally Posted by Gary Reif View Post
Reed Engine we must be talking about two different types of cranks because we rebuilt ours with a wire welder and recut the flywheel ends on the lathe, and keyways with HSS cutters. I'm sure they weren't any kind of cast because the first cast iron one I rebuilt I couldn't cut so we quit rebuilding the Arrow cranks. Of course that was over 15 years ago and I don't know what's going on in that type of stuff now. The cranks we rebuilt were from the 40's 50's and 60's era engines. We also rebuilt a lot of C46, C66 and C96 Continentals (sp) before they became Arrow engines. Gary

The engines we work on daily are from the late 50's on. By now most have had the cranks replaced so maybe the "old" ones are long gone now but to my knowledge they were all either grey cast or ductile iron. Reguardless of the material they were made of and the method used we stopped repairing FM crankshafts decades ago. We had too high of a failure rate. When an engine leaves my shop I want it to make the longest run possible and my customers agree. A few dollars saved today followed by a failure and more dollars spent in the near future is not what they want. They get what they want (and pay for).

Arrow bought the C series from Waukesha in 1955. Again, to my knowledge C series cranks were cast steel. I'll ask some of the guys at Arrow about this. Arrow told me their self the FM cranks they sold (to me anyway) were cast iron. I've done business with them since 1978. The last Fairbanks Bell imported from Mexico was in the late 70's or early 80's (I could call one of the Yarbroughs and ask) but those hecho in mexico engines were some sorry quality. From 1980 on I know of only four people who made 118 cranks, Arrow, Bell, Crow and me.

To determine if a crank was a forging you'd have to cut it in two sideways and look for grain disruption. To my knowledge. To forge one from the side would be what I'd call a stamped steel. No grain disruption but it would at least be steel.

and... it could be some of you know more about this than I do. That aside, I am going to build a 118 crankshaft in the method I mentioned and I intend on sharing that as it progresses.
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Last edited by Reed Engine; 11-04-2013 at 10:25:15 AM.
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  #23  
Old 11-04-2013, 10:40:32 AM
Jack Innes Jack Innes is offline
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

Jason,
I just replaced the crankshaft in a 1912 Buick that had broken for the second time. Someone had done a wonderful job of welding a complete break at the end of a rod journal. It broke again at a different journal but in the same way. It would be wise to have your crank magnifluxed or x-rayed to be sure there are not other cracks. That T head case would be harder to replace than the crank. What kind of engine is it? One never knows what is out there. I just found a crankshaft for a 1911 Cadillac about 12,000 miles from home! It was here within a week by air freight.
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Old 11-04-2013, 12:09:10 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

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Originally Posted by froelich View Post
That's a forged crank.
And it's also a broke crank.
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Old 11-04-2013, 12:59:59 PM
J.B. Castagnos J.B. Castagnos is offline
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

A forged crank will have a wide area, usually dressed by grinding, at the parting line as the one in the Buick picture, a cast crank will have a narrow sharp parting line from the sand casting.
Some of you may have seen the article, here's a link to a 3 cylinder crank I made.

http://www.smokstak.com/forum/showth...t=lawrence+cyl
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  #26  
Old 11-04-2013, 05:07:27 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

Now that was crafty. I've came close to having a blank cut out like what you've done. I'm trying to keep this at a certain dollar amount. Now if I fail I'll go back to the square blank. I can machine the whole thing. I just don't want to.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:20:49 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

I love the ingenuity used to craft a crankshaft and perform repairs. Ya gotta admire the stakkers, their dedication and innovation.

I was involved in a few crankshaft projects myself at the manufacturing level. A couple projects for auto cranks with Honda, and a couple for Caterpillar. The Honda projects were the heat and forge, then quickly twist them for offset before it cools down.

The fun one was for container ship engines. Like reaaaaly big stuff! I concepted and sold two systems for bending raw stock for pin throws prior to machining and one for crank pin and mains hardening to Hyundai Marine in Korea.

The scope of the project was enormous both in machine size as well as the capital investment. Iíd say the project value was around 100 million usd, with my portion being a paltry 6 mil. From conception to production it was a pretty short gestation being only 3 Ĺ years.

So hereís what we did.
System 1 Crank pin throw forming
To build a container ship crank (or Ĺ of it if two are bolted together) you simply start with a chunk of 40 inch diameter round stock about 40 feet long. Yeah, that slug weighs about 171,000 pounds. Itís clamped down in a rather large bending press. Then my part comes in. I induction heat a zone 4 to 6 feet long to 2200F and maintain a surface to core temperature of only 15 degrees. It uses an 800 kW power source and the heat times are approximately 4 hours.

The induction heating coil is then removed and a press ram moves in and pushes approximately 2 feet of the heated zone outward to form the crank throw.
The part is allowed to slow cool in place and clamped for 2 days then itís indexed and rotated for the next pin forming. The process is repeated for as many pins as the crank will have.

They wanted to form all the pins on the same axis to simplify the machine but I cited the complexity and cost of adding a second machine to heat and twist the material. Remember that the workload is 40 inches in diameter and 171,000 pounds and twisting that mass even heated to a semi plastic state would require an ungodly amount of torque. Besides, doing the initial heat and bend with clocking each crank pin without twisting eliminates any potential for stresses from a secondary twist and clock operation.

Once the crank is rough formed, it goes into a furnace at between 1500 to 1700F for a week for several stress relieving/normalizing cycles, then a slow cool for a week before the initial sand blasting and machining operations.

System 2 heat treating
We did an induction machine to harden the throws which is pretty straightforward as this has been done since the 1950ís for automotive, truck, and off road engines. But, the scope is the amazing part. The machine is about 30 feet tall as we used what are called the walking coil design. The induction coil is pneumatically clamped around the rough machined pin or main and the crank is rotated at about 50 rpm to insure the heat pattern is even around the diameter. When doing the rod pins, the coils move up and down with the stroke as the part rotates. Quenching for hardening is in situ within the induction coils.

Once the hardening has been completed, the part goes back in the furnace for a few days for the tempering of the hardened areas.

Iíd say to complete one crankshaft from raw stock to finished part takes at least a month.

We couldnít test the things here as the building isnít big enough, and we couldnít handle a 170,000 pound part, so we processed round stock segments for proof of process and to verify the case hardness depths and the correct microstructure after hardening.

I made 4 trips to Korea for that job. I have a fondness for Korean food now for some reason.
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  #28  
Old 11-04-2013, 09:48:46 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

Interesting. I'd liked to have seen all that done. I'm completely on the opposite side of the spectrum here, I'm doing a 6" stroke on as low a tech approach as I can. Trying to keep this to about $200.00.

On another topic, what about preheat before welding? Right now my plan is to machine counterbores for the wlelds. They will be 3/8" deep on each side. The journals are 1 1/2 thick so that's 3/4" total weld on each side making 1/2 of the thickness of the journal. I'm going to use 7018. We will fan up a small furnace to do the preheat in. Am I on track on the preheat temp?

---------- Post added at 07:48 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:41 PM ----------

What happened to the edit button?

I omitted the preheat temp, which is 1000 degrees. Then welded with 7018. Then cooled in the sand box till room temp before machining the mains and flywheel surfaces. The pin will be done before it's welded in that way I won't have to offset swing the crank keeping time (and cost) down.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:06:22 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

I can certainly understand why having failures is unacceptable, and casting out of grey or ductile iron is undesired.

Machining, however, is very costly, particularly in individual part state.

Now, if you could waterjet cut the blanks, and then attach the counterweights to the blanks as separate pieces, it would be much lower in cost. My contention would be that if one were to do this, especially on a single-cylinder, cutting the crankshaft to recieve the counterweights as 'shrunk on', and then somehow lightly pinned or key'd, followed by machining and balancing, would be the most durable combination.

I certainly wouldn't consider making it in multiple pieces, as the time and tool-wear investment would be phenominal with respect to per-unit output... just making ONE is a high-labor cost.

I would still think that submitting the pattern for a forging would be much less expensive. About six months ago, I took a call from a nice gal from Milwaukee Forge (http://www.milwaukeeforge.com/index.html), she was looking for production opportunities for my company. Alas, we don't use forgings, but I did take a few minutes to find out what they were capable of, and how the cost of forgings compared to casting nowdays... and I was suprised at how inexpensive the forging operation could be done.

In any case, feasibility assessment isn't based solely on any one given point...

unless the concept being assessed is simply not possible...

(i.e., if the part you need to manufacture, must be manufactured from some material that does not exist... like... if you need a crankshaft manufactured from Valium 384 !).

(I wouldn't recommend making a crankshaft out of any flavor of Valium... you wouldn't need to heat it up, to make it twist... )

Anyway, if you have a facility that can waterjet, or laser, or plasma, have at it. I use laser for materials up to about 3/8" with good results. Plasma to a little over an inch. Waterjet will do it very nicely, but with ANY of the methods, the cut speed (inches per minute) drop dramatically with material thickness.

Waterjet has an advantage over laser and plasma, that there is no Heat Affected Zone.... but the cost to cut something very thick, is very, very high... and most shops I've worked with, won't re-use garnet (abrasive) because recycling it eventually contaminates and damages the machine... and oftentimes, they'll not allow it, because it can transfer contaminants from some other cut, to the next job.

Anyway, economic feasiblity nowdays, is all based on the circumstances onto which you place the need. That includes manufacturing volume AND... manufacturing timing... how quickly you need parts, greatly determines how much things COST. I get my best prices on stuff by making it so that my suppliers can do work on an as-convenient-for-them basis... they 'work it in' when other like operations occur... that makes it very easy, and very cheap for them, and that makes the cost at MY end much lower.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:16:19 PM
Jason W Jason W is offline
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Innes View Post
Jason,
I just replaced the crankshaft in a 1912 Buick that had broken for the second time. Someone had done a wonderful job of welding a complete break at the end of a rod journal. It broke again at a different journal but in the same way. It would be wise to have your crank magnifluxed or x-rayed to be sure there are not other cracks. That T head case would be harder to replace than the crank. What kind of engine is it? One never knows what is out there. I just found a crankshaft for a 1911 Cadillac about 12,000 miles from home! It was here within a week by air freight.
It's from about a 1912 Pierce Racine (JI Case) car (a 35 or 40hp engine). It was repurposed as part of the initial run of 10-20 Case tractors. They must have modified the crank a little as we've compared it to another crank and the journals on the tractor crank are bigger and it is a bit shorter. Funny since where it broke is right in that journal. The opposite side from the pics I posted looked like a human hip joint. It was a very odd failure.

It might be possible to find one but considering how hard it is to find any parts for this engine at all I'd be amazed if one of the tractor ones existed. But if you had a lead on one I'd be all ears.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:26:31 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

I did several of the castings 100% and it took me 8 hrs to finish one. Arrow gave me their print and hooked me up with Jack Swearingen, he had CNCs and the fixture to offset swing them etc. His cost to do them was the same as mine so I let him do them. He ran them in 10s. If I did them again I'd have to do at least 50 to get one. Jack went out of business so I'd have to find another shop so I'd expect that cost to be up too. I can see $400-500.00 in a crank x 50 that's $20,000.00. And then have to set on them till they sell. That's my motivation to do what I'm doing. A $200-300 crank that can be fabbed up on demand. I can sell them at a good profit margin. A win win for me and the customer.

I also realize this may not work. Again, I'm out about $200-300, no killer. If it doesn't work I can hang it on the wall.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:30:54 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

Jason, it might be worth wasting a call to Sturgeons Corner tractor salvage. I've found several odd things there. Pm me and I'll give you thier phone number.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:50:13 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

1000 is overkill for preheat, but the higher the better. It's unlikely we know the alloy it's made from, so lots O preheat is a good thing. Hope you got all the way to the center of the material with your weld passes as I'd hate to see voids that can cause internal stress risers and propagate another crack. Heck, the crank is weak in its original form as we know because it has broken before so perhaps your welds are stronger than the parent material. On the other hand, perhaps the aluminum block is too flexible in that it won't support the crank and harmonics occur and eventually snap it. Oh well, it is what it is.

As to preheat for bearing weld up this is also good. As to a rod to be used, I'd look at one that exhibits a low hardness level when cooled to mitigate compressive stresses at the weld/base material zone. Dunno if you need a 70,000 pound rod tensile, but if it's worked before I can't fault your usage. Donít forget reheats between passes if the thing cools down. Iíd stay away from the shoulder if possible as welding into it causes a stress riser at the cheek which is something you donít want. Also induces more warpage. If you have to weld into it, be sure to machine a nice soft radius at the transition point.

Make an appointment with a local heat treater if there is one very close to you to do a stress relieve cycle on it as soon as possible perhaps within an hour after you perform your welding. It's unlikely the crank is made of a high carbon alloy but if it was, the faster it gets into a furnace the better.

You might want to discuss with Mr. heat treat if he has a flat plate furnace to place it on so it won't warp and sag. You might want to make a fixture to support the crank in several areas which will go along for the ride in the furnace. Once stress relieving is done I'd have it magnafluxed before machining to show any cracks. Maybe even magnaflux it prior to all your weldups.

*Just a side note if you work with higher carbon alloys: I've done heat treating systems for large and small gears, crane wheels, shafts, bearings, rail road stuff, small engines etc. Some of them were spec'd in chrome molys like 4130-4140. These alloys must be immediately oven heated to get rid of hydrogen and stresses after case hardening. One gear job about 30 inches in diameter with a face width around 8Ēwas tested on our floor for heating and hardening below the tooth root. A part was hardened to determine the heat and quench cycle, then set aside to cool prior to cutting it up for a metallurgical evaluation and microhardness test. Well it seems the tech doing machine setup didn't include a temper cycle.

I was in the office when I heard a loud bang in the shop. I walk out there and the tech was spooked and looking at the gear. It went bang he said. I had another guy immediately flip a forging bucket over the gear. I asked the setup tech if he did the temper cycle and he said no. There was so much compressive stresses between the hardened tooth mass versus the unaffected base material that the whole hardened tooth perimeter cracked circumferentially all the way around the gear and completely across the face width about ľ inch below the tooth roots. Once it cooled the heated outer ring containing the teeth was loose as it completely separated! Why tip the forging bucket over it? In case it cracked more during cooldown and wanted to send pieces flying.

And thatís a lesson in pre and post heating for all of us!
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Old 11-04-2013, 11:08:38 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

I think my project and the picture of the broken crank might be getting mixed together. There's actually several topics being discussed here at the same time but they all have to do with each other.

My crank will be a new crank. You mention 1000 is too much but don't suggest a lower temp. Care to give me a guess as to a range?

I do not have access to a heat treating falcility. I will throw the welded crank in the box of sand and that will have to do.

As far as my costs, I'll keep track of that and will see but I'm thinking I won't be in too deep on this. If it goes way over I can simply pull the plug, something I couldn't do if I had a foundry do a run.
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Old 11-05-2013, 12:30:12 AM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

I'm sure the cranks we rebuilt were steel forgings they had the flashing seams ground down as previously stated on a forging. I guess we either got very lucky or we did everything right because in the 25 years I worked in this shop I could probably count on one hand the number of cranks that broke. We had some of our customers through all those years to. We are in central Kansas and we had customers all the way from north to the Nebraska line and south to Blackwell Oklahoma.

As far as the multi cylinder crankshaft that has been discussed on this thread. My thoughts on this. Have the mains been reground after the welding? If not they certainly aren't running true. Also the block may need to be line bored to produce perfectly aligned mains. If non of this is done the crank will be constantly flexing and will break again in short order. Just my .02. Gary
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Old 11-05-2013, 09:10:54 AM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

What was the name of the shop? I was always aware of a shop in Great Bend but we never did any business back and forth. I have done business with Dick's in Ellinwood (sp?).

---------- Post added at 07:08 AM ---------- Previous post was at 06:39 AM ----------

What I refer to as a forged crank is one with grain disruption



The FM cranks may have been steel and they may have been formed by a forge but the seem is not where it should be to bend to steels grain as in the picture. That's what I called a stamped steel crank.

All I can say is there was/is no one in Tulsa that could weld/regrind one. Maybe you guys had it figured out and I never tried your work as I never really knew who that shop was. We just never had any luck so we quit many years ago.

---------- Post added at 07:10 AM ---------- Previous post was at 07:08 AM ----------

added.. weld/regrind without them having a horrible failure rate.

what happened to the edit button?
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Old 11-05-2013, 05:14:12 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

One of my first jobs working in a machine shop was welding crankshafts, we used a Storm Vulcan crank welder. It was a wire feed type machine only instead of gas it had a big hopper full of flux that flowed over the welding tip to submerge the arc in flux. You started at the radius and welded to the center of the journal, then reversed the tip and did the other half. I remember we did something different depending on if it was a cast crank or a forged crank, I think used a different wire, but its been so long I just don't remember. No preheating, just weld, cool, grind, and straighten.

I remember doing a bunch of single cylinder cranks for oilfield engines, but I'd be lying if I said any were for an FM. Whether it was the right way, or wrong way, or how many broke, I don't know, I was young, it was a job, I did what the boss said
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Old 11-05-2013, 10:09:18 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

The name of our shop was Scranton Machine and Supply. That was a NAPA machine shop. I worked there from 1973 to 1998. We rebuilt a lot of cranks and resleeved a lot of cylinders for FM, Ajax and CD Wittes. We also did a lot of automotive and industrial engine machine work. We were still rebuilding 503 FM cranks and resleeving 503 cylinders at the time I left.
As far as the type of steel cranks I assume they were forged some way. It's been a few years since I've had one in front of me. I just know they looked the same as the cranks in my
1 1/2, 2 and 3 HP FM engines I have in my shop and we straightened a lot of them in a crankshaft straightening press and if they were going to break that is where it would happen. We always magnafluxed them before we did anything to them. That NAPA store is still there but the shop closed in 1999. It was getting pretty outdated at that time and they couldn't find anyone who wanted to learn to run all that old machinery.
Dick's Engine Service is still in business and still rebuilding cranks and doing oilfield machine work.
I moved on and am now a maintenance machinist in a manufacturing plant. I just play in my home shop now on my antique engines, and do misc. machine work and engine work for a few friends. Have a 13" SB lathe and a 10x49 Beaver vertical mill and valve grinder and cylinder boring bar so I can still do machine work for my own stuff.
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Old 11-05-2013, 10:57:58 PM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

This stuff is getting to be a lost art. I've done business with Andy at Dicks for years. What you said is true, seems young guys don't want to learn this stuff and don't realize they are passing on not only preserving the past but passing on making a very good living. For years it was preached a good job was only for the white collar group. There are so many of them now and most of them can't change their spark plugs let alone figure out how to bore and sleeve a 8 1/2 x 20 Ajax. It's a shame.

At my shop I bore and sleeve 118-503 (over 200 to date) and I've done several Ajax but my area there isn't really any Ajax any more.

---------- Post added at 08:52 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:49 PM ----------

Any way, white collar guys need things done and it is becoming more true every day the blue collar guy is now calling the shots and telling the white collar guy what the price will be and not the other way around.

Sure wish someone would fix the edit button.

---------- Post added at 08:57 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:52 PM ----------

Edit. That's should read 8 1/2 x 10 Ajax. And I've bored and sleeved over 2000 fm 118-503.
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Old 11-06-2013, 08:47:00 AM
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Default Re: Building a FM 118 crankshaft?

A bit off-topic here but as far as I'm concerned, a College degree is, for most people, overkill for a career.

In fact, a degree may qualify you as "over qualified" for a job.

We need to go back to the system of the turn of the 20th Century where, in High School, you could opt for either College prep or go the technical route.

Some of our finest machinists (and engineers) came out of High School shop classes and Vocational schools.

It's hard to find a High School that has shop classes. The "educators" think that the technical trades are beneath their students and that condemns a lot of kids to careers they really don't like and don't do well at.

We need more well trained machinists, plumbers, electricians, etc. today! The knowledge of the traditional trades is being lost to "parts changers".
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