Help with Foley Retoother

Discussion in 'Saw Makers Forum' started by Dylan, Sep 3, 2015.

  1. Dylan

    Dylan Member

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    Hey all,

    I had it in my mind to build a backsaw for my father and I recently purchased a 385 retoother, well too actually, and a few other foley machines that were in the package. I broke it down and cleaned it up and oiled it, it seems to run well.

    I'm having difficulty producing uniform sized teeth with the higher ppi ratchets (14/15). I'm using .020" 1095 spring steel, I've tried lengths between 10"-14". Strangely, it look like every other tooth or every third tooth is a bit larger or smaller. I check the troubleshooting in the manual and tried making their suggestions. One I was confused about was increasing the drag on the feed pawl screw. I have it set to that it goes halfway back to the next ridge, which I read is the proper setting when trying to hit every ridge. Any advice would really help.

    Also, can anyone speak to how cleanly the teeth should be cut? I get a bit a an edge around the cut on the down side of the plate.

    Anyway, I've enjoyed reading through a lot of the older posts, there is a wealth of information here and some truly talented craftsman.

    Thanks,
    Dylan
     
  2. Dusty Shed Dweller

    Dusty Shed Dweller Most Valued Member

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    On one of the American sites (woodnet?) there is a very long treatise on this particular gadget. I believe that the condition of the die that punches the teeth is very important for a clean cut. You'll need to file after toothing anyway and I suggest that you will also need to tap the plate with a hammer on the reverse side above the gullets to straighten the plate.
     
  3. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Hi Dylan,
    Having just recently picked up a 385 retoother, I'm not able to help directly, but seeing how the machine works, I'd suspect that the depth of the tooth is varying on you machine, giving you a variation in tooth size, that might not be the ratchet bar, but some thing else moving in and out relative to the die. When I get mine up and running ( waiting on ratchet and carrier bars ) I'll be able to compare notes.

    Ray
     
  4. Dylan

    Dylan Member

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    Thanks Dusty and Ray.

    I think it must be the punch, it was pretty worn and I read elsewhere it should have some degree of a taper to it but mine is dead flat. I'm working on cleaning it up now.

    Ray, what size motor do you have on the retoother? I bought a set of Foley equipment and it actually had two retoothers in it, one with a 1/4hp and another with 1/6 hp. I purchased a new friction drive wheel but I think I'm gonna switch that out for a belt and pulley set up. I've got a few extra carriers and ratchets if you're looking for them.

    Dylan
     
  5. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Hi Dylan,
    I did some searching on line for the punch and die sharpening instructions. I found the following on a Canadian forum. https://forum.canadianwoodworking.com/showthread.php?60276-Foley-Saw-Retoother-Query

    The directions for sharpening are in the manual and say:
    Die
    Sharpening of the die is best done on a surface grinder by removing .005 to .015 material from top of die. Note, never grind in the "V" of the die. A makeshift job of grinding the die can be done by holding the top side of the die against the flat side of a grinding wheel.
    The grinding wheel must be in good condition and should be 46 to 60 grit. Lightly stone cutting edges to remove butt. After sharpening the die, check overall height by placing the die on a flat surface. The die should be maintained at a height of 1-5/32 inch by placing shims as necessary under the die.


    Punch

    Sharpening of the punch is best done on a tool grinder by grinding .005 to .020 from end of the punch. Note, shear angle on end of punch should be maintained. A makeshift job of grinding the punch can be done by holding the end of the punch against the side of a grinding wheel. The wheel should be 46 to 60 grit. Lightly stone cutting edges to remove burr."
    Elsewhere I noted that the shear angle on the end of the punch is 3 degrees.


    Summarizing the above.
    So the punch has a slight shearing action, caused by the 3 degree angle on the Punch, The Die is ground straight across removing material on the top only. After grinding the die is shimmed to 1 5/32"

    Do you have access to a surface grinder? If not I would be happy grind them for you.
     
  6. Dylan

    Dylan Member

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    5
    Hey Ray,

    Thanks for the information.
    Before you posted this I tried sharpening the die and punch myself, I just checked and my shear angle is about 4.5 degrees. Do you this the extra 1.5 degrees will prove problematic? My thought is it might dull faster, but nothing catastrophic. I'm gonna try it out tomorrow.

    If it doesn't work I will probably send the extra die and punch out to you.

    Thanks again,

    Oh, newest issue of the day, after running the plate through the retoother there is a bend/curve along the tooth line. The spring steel i bought come coiled so that may have contributed as well. I've read about this issue, and that it requires a bit of smithing to get it flat. Do you think a slip roll would work? I see that grizzly makes a small 12" model for about $100 that is rated for 20 gauge mild steel, which is thicker than the steel I am using .020" so 24/26 gauge. I just don't know how spring steel acts in a slip roll. Any thoughts?
     
  7. Dusty Shed Dweller

    Dusty Shed Dweller Most Valued Member

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    I doubt that 1.5 degrees shear angle is going to do much other than maybe hasten dulling, but others will be able to speak more authoritively on the subject.

    As for the bow imparted by the retoother, I'd use a hammer to gently take the bow out. The beauty of the hammer is that the skill can work in plates of al thicknesses.

    Place the reverse side down over a very hard, flat, heavy chunk of wood. Apply light machine oil and then gently tap the plate about 1/4" above each gullet with a light hammer that has a very slightly rounded face - not a pein and not flat. Light taps, not hammer of Vulcan stuff. Keep the hammer strike square and you won't mark up the plate. You'll probably butcher a couple at first but practice makes perfect.
     
  8. Dylan

    Dylan Member

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    5
    Thanks Dusty,

    When you say reverse side you mean the concave side facing downward?

    Dylan
     
  9. Dusty Shed Dweller

    Dusty Shed Dweller Most Valued Member

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    120
    Correct... the concave side should be on the block... the humped (convex) side is up and that is the side that you will be tapping.
     
  10. Dylan

    Dylan Member

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    Ok, I have finally tried the retoother with the newly sharpened punch and die and the teeth are cut to uniform size and clean, only the flywheel now slips off the shaft after 3 or 4 inches of punches. It doesn't look like any flats are ground into the shaft for the set screws. Not quite sure how I am going to fix this issue.

    Thanks for the replies and advice,

    Dylan
     
  11. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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  12. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    I have been trying to post but am a new member so I hope this gets through. I have a model 32 Foley and need a ratchet bar I have none at all Help
     
  13. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Your post is all good, but I fear that ratchet bars can be hard to come by. I bought one off Ron Bontz, he may still have some?
     
  14. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    Thanks Ray. I just have to figure out how to navigate the site in order to contact Ron. Keep you posted.
     
  15. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

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    651
    Hi Bobby,
    You could try and contact him here. http://www.bontzsawworks.net/ But be aware he might not have any ratchet bars left. I think he just had a batch made as a one off thing.
    I have plans to make some for myself, but that might not be for quite a while.

    Ray
     
  16. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    Thanks Ray for your help. I will try and make contact with bontz. If you should decide to make in the future please let me know. Regards Bobby
     
  17. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    Thanks Alan. I have located some of the original set of bars (4) but have to pass on these for now. I am still trying to get my 61 up and running as it needs a vise. I have a model 200 set up on its way and will attempt to retrofit the saw tension assembly to do the job. Between what I have and what is coming I should also be able to file circular saw blades. If anyone has some close up pictures of a model 32 toother set up with ratchet bars and carriers installed I would like to see them so as to be able to recognize a complete package if I come across one. thanks for the help.
     
  18. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    I would be interested in bars that were not part of the original set as I have located some of those. The filer I have will only set me back $75 and I that includes the new steel gear I have replaced the fiber drive gear with. I have already passed on a 387 with a saw set for $100 as I was advised to due to the fact that a partially broken tooth can cause the machine to go off and start cutting in the wrong place. I intend to do most of my good saws by hand anyway. Thanks for your help and let me know if you make or wish to sell something other than a bar that would have been part of the original set. Bobby
     
  19. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    Alan great pictures. thanks I just got found a set of gages so I can use them for the filer. Don't know if they are the same for the toother or how to set up the filer yet as they are in the mail. At least now I have some idea. Bobby
     
  20. Bobby

    Bobby Member

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    I do know what bars were in the original set. I have a set waiting on me that is a complete original set and one that has one original bar missing. Neither include the two extra bars. Some of us are not cheap just on social security and looking for a project that is interesting. We have a lot of time but extra money if there is any can be better spent. Personally I have the ability and the equipment to manufacture these bar for myself if I should choose to do so. I did not buy this equipment to sharpen circular saws it comes with the package I am getting for $20. I would only sharpen a circular saw blade that I use on my cord wood saw. It is not carbide and 24" in diameter. I would not want to try and replace it with a carbide blade. It would be cheaper to have firewood delivered. Some people just enjoy playing with mechanical things that they would never consider making a living with. When you get to a certain age, if you get the wisdom you are supposed to get while you are here, it's no longer all about the money. Do you ever go to a restaurant for a sandwich or only patronize fine expensive places that employ a chef? Some of us enjoy a sandwich on occasion. It does not necessarily make us whores, just capable of having a good time without having to impress anyone. We can find satisfaction in knowing that we do not know everything, and that there is always something to learn. As far as the case being made for carbide blades over HSS others who buy only tempered throw away hand saws would probably make a case against hand sharpening a saw also. I would not nor would I use just carbide for cutting all wood projects.