Two Infinities

Sat, 05 Mar 2011

Primitive Melt Cutter
Last year one of our suppliers sent us a simple tool to cut the webbing we buy into the canvas belts we sell. A cartridge heater is fixed in the blade which, when hot, will cut and seal webbing made from synthetic fiber like polyester or nylon.

To work properly, the cartridge needed a 220 volt power source. The diameter being metric seems to narrow the market in cartridges to 220 volts, but no matter, I found a 110 V to 220 V transformer on-line--cheap and a lot easier than wiring in two out-of-phase circuits! A little bit of grease and the arm brings the blade down to the anvil quite easily. A strong spring pushes the blade back up.

Automated cutting machines are comparatively inexpensive, $3000 plus ex factory in China or Taiwan. I don't know how long it will last, but this hand tool tickles my fancy and cost less than $100.
melt cutter
melt cutter close-up

There was only one glitch. The head of the bolt that fixes the hot blade in its socket snapped off. Luckily, I had the right tool, a bolt extractor. It had lain unused in my tool box since the time M. Carpentier helped me rebuild the engine of my 1959 Volkswagen some thirty years ago.
bolt extractor with bolt

posted at: 23:02 | path: | permanent link to this entry