Question for a machinist: - Page 2 - Chevelle Tech
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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old May 1st, 19, 10:12 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Tom,
How much can you buy the correct switch for ?? I cant imagine doing a job like that for much less than $100 and that would be giving you a deal. And there is still no assurance that it can even be done without measuring both switches.
No doubt that a machinist would charge a lot to do this. But honestly, I like to tinker and wouldnt mind buying a cheap lathe if I thought I could successfully modify the cheap switch. The biggest issue is that the early switch is obsolete and Ive only seen one NOS for sale. Next time someone needs one it may not be available at all. Id love to be able to modify the new style switches to work and just give them away to whoever might need one in the future.
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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old May 1st, 19, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Question for a machinist:

When I bought my 68 I knew some dash parts would be hard to come by since much of it is one-year-only. Little did I know that my early 68 was even more unique due to the early ignition switch/mounting plate change. The vast majority of 68s use the later style switch. Lucky me....
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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old May 1st, 19, 11:49 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Sure it can be done, I suspect it would take me 4 hours to set that up in my lathe get everything figured including setting the gears for the threads and like Bill said I would prefer to have both to measure from.

The cheapest lathes you can buy would be the bigger Harbor freight ones for $600 plus dollars but tooling will run you more than a machine real fast.

If you can find a die nut then you will only be asking for the housing to be cut down so that could be done cheap.


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post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 2:19 AM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

At $13.00 each, if you can remove the lock cylinder easily, it becomes a fairly simple job.
Make an arbor to hold the housing properly and have at it.
At shop rates you might want to do a dozen to recover set-up cost.

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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 7:48 AM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

I am a Machinist, I own a shop, and I could chuck that switch up and "make it look like" the older model.

The problem with any operation like that is getting it chucked up and running true without damaging anything.
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post #21 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Thank you all again for your responses. A special thank-you to the professional machinists. I know this is a very small project but that setup and overhead make this expensive for a real machine shop. This is something I hope to do myself. Im not the guy who wants to make $$$ off of it. Im always looking for something to tinker with and Ive passed up so many reasons to buy a small lathe or mill in the past. This might be the excuse I need to dive into one. If I do it, Id feel great having extras in case anyone else here ever runs into this same issue.

At least I now feel confident that this is at least possible.
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post #22 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 1:45 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Quote:
Originally Posted by jackie schmidt View Post
I am a Machinist, I own a shop, and I could chuck that switch up and "make it look like" the older model.

The problem with any operation like that is getting it chucked up and running true without damaging anything.
Can you put 1 1/4" threads on a 1" part?

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post #23 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 3:12 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean View Post
Can you put 1 1/4" threads on a 1" part?
I don't know where your getting that the part dia. is too small to thread. Look at it. The top of the threads that are there already are a smaller dia. than the area that would get threaded.
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post #24 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 6:33 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Quote:
Originally Posted by HKalin View Post
I don't know where your getting that the part dia. is too small to thread. Look at it. The top of the threads that are there already are a smaller dia. than the area that would get threaded.
Unless there is some type of optical illusion going on, the threads look to be the same size.

It's not worth arguing over.
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post #25 of 30 (permalink) Old May 2nd, 19, 7:48 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Id probably modify my dash to accept the later ignition switch.

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post #26 of 30 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 19, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan F View Post
Id probably modify my dash to accept the later ignition switch.
I did consider that, but I honestly cant figure out how the later switch was ever made to work. The cup on both my original and aftermarket dash bezels are the same depth and the metal plate that holds the switch in place sits flat against the back of the plastic bezel. Maybe later cars had that metal backing plate cupped so that it protrudes farther forward into the plastic bezel.

But the metal backing plates arent reproduced and Im only guessing that they changed the plate when they changed the switch. AND... I had the dash out for several weeks and now that its all back together Im not inclined to pull it all out again. Much easier to just replace the switch.
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post #27 of 30 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 19, 2:16 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

did you notice the adapter I posted from an OPGI statement? post 11


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post #28 of 30 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 19, 2:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Question for a machinist:

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Originally Posted by 2cool View Post
did you notice the adapter I posted from an OPGI statement? post 11
Yes. I have that piece. Still not right, but I do appreciate your taking the time to research it.
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post #29 of 30 (permalink) Old May 10th, 19, 10:26 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Question for a machinist:

Soooo... I sucked it up and bought the way-overpriced switch from the Ebay seller. I put it in yesterday and the lock face now sits nicely out where I can reach it.

BUT... It dawned on me that this switch sat properly in the old dash. I dug through my old stuff and discovered that the original switch bezel was much more shallow than the new reproduction bezel. So apparently when the switch was changed mid-year, the dash itself didn't change to accommodate the newer switch, but the mounting bezel changed. Here are pictures of my new setup with the reproduction bezel/nut and the way-too-expensive early-style switch and the original bezel nut with the late style switch.

Bottom line is that the new reproduction bezel/nut matches the other three , but has to use the early-style switch.

After studying both designs, it looks like one can use the newer-style switch with the reproduction bezel/nut if you first cut about 1/4" off of the front part of the nut then cut about 1/4" off the back of the plastic bezel before pressing them together. I did not try this, but I see no reason why it wouldn't work. And it'd sure be much easier than turning down and threading the body of the newer-style switch.

The picture with the lettering faded out is what I started with. The picture with the newer looking lettering is what I now have with the early-style switch.

Hopefully this will help someone who searches for this solution in the future.
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post #30 of 30 (permalink) Old May 10th, 19, 12:44 PM
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Re: Question for a machinist:

I have bought plenty of stuff that later I decided I did not like or just wanted something else, I'm getting ready to order my 4th set of valve covers.


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