Jon, this sounds like the perfect complement to Machinery's Handbook. I wonder if they have an app for that, though. I tend to use my laptop to view drawings and access the internet while doing projects. One has to be careful. I probably should get a ruggedized one. This might also be a good app for a tablet, or phone with a larger screen.
I don't know if someone has created a Machinery's Handbook app. I love the paper version and refer to it often, The Machinist Calc Pro is quite a nice device. I'm still learning about many capabilities. The instruction manual includes many helpful examples. Happy Holidays.
I have a machine shop too, and also enjoy the cutting oil, machine, metal smells. But, I am starting to wonder if these smells are degrading my lung capacity over time. Those aren't natural scents
Even though my smartphone could run apps that does everything the calculator can, I don't like to take my cell into the shop. Oil and debris gets everywhere, and my phone is the last place I want to see it. This calculator, I would feel more comfortable having in the shop. I already have several small calcs out there covered in grim. However, at $70-80 dollars for the Calc Pro, I may have to pass for now. If it was more like $20, I'd consider it.
My giant, and free, drill chart on the wall has everything needed from tapping. Can't beat that price.
I have one of those wall charts, too, Cabe. A while ago a company called "Small Parts" printed the chart and either sold it or gave it away. Sadly, they no longer offer it but people can find others. I recomment having a local office-supply store or Kinkos/Fedex or the UPS Store nearby laminate such charts. That way they resist oil, dirt, and swarf.
The chart is that coveted when I should laminate it? It's about 3 feet by 2 feet or so. I actually have a few of them. I used to use the printed hand reference ones. I will have to see who made the bigger ones originally.
I rarely ever bother with feed calculations, except for threading. Even then my manual and CNC lathe both have automated options for doing the task. Out of curiosity, how often do you need to make speed calculations?
My chart is about 2 by 3 feet and laminating it at the local UPS Store cost about $3. I make feed calculations for most projects. I have a mini-lathe and a small Unimat. I suggested to the Calculates Industries people that a built-in tachometer might be useful in a new design. My lathe and mill don't have a digital control of RPMs.
If I have enough experience with the tools and materials I am cutting, I can usually guess close enough. However, it is easy to waste a lot of time cutting too slow, and/or burn up tools by missing the surface footage on the high side.
From my experience, people tend to use too low of feeds and speeds on carbide tools, and too high of speeds on high speed steel tools. People who are used to the feeds and speeds for HSS tend to be afraid to run the speeds and feeds that carbide wants to run at. After you run carbide for a while it is easy to accidentally push HSS tools too hard and burn them up.
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