Cutting out metal sections

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tom_tom_go
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Cutting out metal sections

Post by tom_tom_go » Sun May 19, 2019 11:07 am

I want to cut out the imitation radiator grill and replace it with some mesh I have:

IMG_20190519_110151-01.jpeg

What's the best way to go about this as I only have one chance!

Thanks,

Tom

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Busted Bricks
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Re: Cutting out metal sections

Post by Busted Bricks » Sun May 19, 2019 12:15 pm

Laser ;)

Seriously though, I'd drill some holes and use a scroll saw.

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Re: Cutting out metal sections

Post by GTB » Sun May 19, 2019 3:14 pm

Busted Bricks wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 12:15 pm
Laser ;)

Seriously though, I'd drill some holes and use a scroll saw.
Actually a laser might be the easiest method, but the precision required would cost a fortune at commercial rates.........

A scroll saw is out, as their depth of cut is only 50mm and what the photo doesn't show is the engine cover soldered behind the visible radiator cover. I doubt a piercing saw would work either, as the blades are the same length as scroll saw blades and both saws are designed for cutting fairly thin wood or metal sheet.

Do you want to open up just the rectangular slots, or make a single large opening and fit mesh behind it, so it looks like the Baguley radiator?

For the single opening the bonnet assembly will be very fragile when handling, so would need to be clamped over a wooden plug made to be a neat fit to reinforce it, or just drilling the holes would likely damage it. Once reinforced, you could chain drill a single large opening and file it to size.

The only way I can think of opening up each narrow rectangle would be to unsolder the radiator cover, clamp it to a piece of plywood, drill the starting holes, start sawing (and sawing and sawing......), then file to final size. Unsoldering would mean a repaint though, as the paint on both engine cover and radiator cover would need the paint stripped to get a decent soldered joint on reassembly.

Personally I'd just paint the rectangular recesses matt black and leave it at that. Not all loco builders used mesh, some just fitted bars to protect the radiator core.

Regards,
Graeme

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Re: Cutting out metal sections

Post by Busted Bricks » Sun May 19, 2019 6:06 pm

Ah, I thought it was just the grill with no bonnet attached to it. I could laser cut a whole new grill/bonnet but of course it would still need to be folded and painted.

Cutting most of it out with a Dremel type tool and some thin cutting discs might be an option. Then clean up with files.

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Re: Cutting out metal sections

Post by tom_tom_go » Mon May 20, 2019 9:13 pm

I think removing the front grill or getting a new one made is the best option (the paint job I don't like anyway so not an issue).

Trouble is I suspect it's been silver soldered so removing it successfully without damage to the body could be an issue.

Thanks for the posts, I shall ponder on it some more...

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