Topics

Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig


Craig Bisgeier
 

Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale, and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model. 
 
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work. 
 
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of the tool when the project is completed.
 
Any ideas? Please share them with me!
 
Craig Bisgeier
 
cbisgeier -at- AmesvilleShops.com


mark_landgraf
 

Craig

You didn't state whether your intent was to create straight, 2 bend, 4 bend or 6 bend grabs, nor if you were going to round wire. 

Then there is the end treatment process. In the wire world it's referred to as heading up. Basically there isn't enough metal in the ends to create the end, so you heat up the end crunch in some extra steel and then hot form and punch the ends. 

I work in 1.5 inch scale and have produced these by the hundreds using mostly sheet metal equipment and 3/32 Dia steel wire. 

Tool and die work and 3D are not words I normally use in the same sentence. 

Mark Landgraf
Albany NY




On Fri, Mar 1, 2019 at 9:43 AM, Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io
<cbisgeier@...> wrote:
Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale, and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model. 
 
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work. 
 
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of the tool when the project is completed.
 
Any ideas? Please share them with me!
 
Craig Bisgeier
 
cbisgeier -at- AmesvilleShops.com


Spen Kellogg <spninetynine@...>
 

On 3/1/2019 7:42 AM, Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io wrote:
Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons
that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale,
and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open
this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on
designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model.
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that
allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It
should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size
with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against
and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work.
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others
can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead
to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of
the tool when the project is completed.
Any ideas? Please share them with me!
Craig,

A plastic or metal spiral with a hole in the center and a series of Vs
cut in around the edge at various redii (that's the plural of radius).
The center hole should be deep enough to produce a good right angle.
Although more complex, it could have a series of tubes (sleeves) with
the ID the correct size for various wire sizes. The outside diameter 
would be the same for each sleeve. To do it you put the wire in the
center hole, bend it toward the desired side (whichever V is for the
length of grab iron you want. Then place the tool with the wire inserted
and bent (the first 90 degree bend) on a flat surface and bend the wire
up into the appropriate V. Cut the wire where desired to give two legs
of the desired length. It also could have a slot as long as the longest
grab and deep enough for the drop grab bends so that the ends could be
bent down to form a drop grab. I would guess that the Vs should be
positioned and notched for 14", 16", 18", 20", 22" and 24". If there is
not enough room on the spiral for all those, then a pair of tools might
be needed. And the length of grabs should be researched to include all
the common length. I wouldn't bother with lengths for diesels, although
passenger car grabs might make sense. I am thinking that t he tools
should probably be metal, rather than plastic, as constant use will wear
out plastic.

Spen


Bruce Smith
 

Gang,

Sounds like you mean this:

Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."




On Mar 1, 2019, at 10:13 AM, Spen Kellogg <spninetynine@...> wrote:

On 3/1/2019 7:42 AM, Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io wrote:
Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons
that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale,
and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open
this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on
designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model.
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that
allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It
should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size
with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against
and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work.
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others
can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead
to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of
the tool when the project is completed.
Any ideas? Please share them with me!

Craig,

A plastic or metal spiral with a hole in the center and a series of Vs
cut in around the edge at various redii (that's the plural of radius).
The center hole should be deep enough to produce a good right angle.
Although more complex, it could have a series of tubes (sleeves) with
the ID the correct size for various wire sizes. The outside diameter 
would be the same for each sleeve. To do it you put the wire in the
center hole, bend it toward the desired side (whichever V is for the
length of grab iron you want. Then place the tool with the wire inserted
and bent (the first 90 degree bend) on a flat surface and bend the wire
up into the appropriate V. Cut the wire where desired to give two legs
of the desired length. It also could have a slot as long as the longest
grab and deep enough for the drop grab bends so that the ends could be
bent down to form a drop grab. I would guess that the Vs should be
positioned and notched for 14", 16", 18", 20", 22" and 24". If there is
not enough room on the spiral for all those, then a pair of tools might
be needed. And the length of grabs should be researched to include all
the common length. I wouldn't bother with lengths for diesels, although
passenger car grabs might make sense. I am thinking that t he tools
should probably be metal, rather than plastic, as constant use will wear
out plastic.

Spen







Jack Burgess
 

I bought one of those tools decades ago and it doesn’t work for our needs since the spacing of the jaws is too wide. One set of jaws is too short but the next set is too long.

 

Jack Burgess

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Bruce Smith
Sent: Friday, March 1, 2019 8:42 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig

 

Gang,

 

Sounds like you mean this:

 

Regards

Bruce

 

Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."

 

 



On Mar 1, 2019, at 10:13 AM, Spen Kellogg <spninetynine@...> wrote:

 

On 3/1/2019 7:42 AM, Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io wrote:

Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons
that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale,
and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open
this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on
designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model.
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that
allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It
should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size
with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against
and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work.
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others
can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead
to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of
the tool when the project is completed.
Any ideas? Please share them with me!

Craig,

A plastic or metal spiral with a hole in the center and a series of Vs
cut in around the edge at various redii (that's the plural of radius).
The center hole should be deep enough to produce a good right angle.
Although more complex, it could have a series of tubes (sleeves) with
the ID the correct size for various wire sizes. The outside diameter 
would be the same for each sleeve. To do it you put the wire in the
center hole, bend it toward the desired side (whichever V is for the
length of grab iron you want. Then place the tool with the wire inserted
and bent (the first 90 degree bend) on a flat surface and bend the wire
up into the appropriate V. Cut the wire where desired to give two legs
of the desired length. It also could have a slot as long as the longest
grab and deep enough for the drop grab bends so that the ends could be
bent down to form a drop grab. I would guess that the Vs should be
positioned and notched for 14", 16", 18", 20", 22" and 24". If there is
not enough room on the spiral for all those, then a pair of tools might
be needed. And the length of grabs should be researched to include all
the common length. I wouldn't bother with lengths for diesels, although
passenger car grabs might make sense. I am thinking that t he tools
should probably be metal, rather than plastic, as constant use will wear
out plastic.

Spen




 


Bruce Smith
 

Jack,

I solved that issue by canting the thing to be bent, using say the set 3 in on one end and 2 in on the other.  Not always perfect, I agree. I have contemplated adding styrene spacers to make it “perfect”, but with a stockpile of 18” grabs, a few other sizes, all commercially produced, most of the rest of the grabs I need are odd sizes and I bend them free hand anyway ;)


Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."




On Mar 1, 2019, at 10:53 AM, Jack Burgess <jack@...> wrote:

I bought one of those tools decades ago and it doesn’t work for our needs since the spacing of the jaws is too wide. One set of jaws is too short but the next set is too long.
 
Jack Burgess
 
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Bruce Smith
Sent: Friday, March 1, 2019 8:42 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig
 
Gang, 
 
Sounds like you mean this:
 
Regards
Bruce
 
Bruce F. Smith            
Auburn, AL
"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."
 

 



On Mar 1, 2019, at 10:13 AM, Spen Kellogg <spninetynine@...> wrote:
 
On 3/1/2019 7:42 AM, Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io wrote:

Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons
that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale,
and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open
this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on
designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model.
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that
allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It
should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size
with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against
and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work.
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others
can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead
to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of
the tool when the project is completed.
Any ideas? Please share them with me!

Craig,

A plastic or metal spiral with a hole in the center and a series of Vs
cut in around the edge at various redii (that's the plural of radius).
The center hole should be deep enough to produce a good right angle.
Although more complex, it could have a series of tubes (sleeves) with
the ID the correct size for various wire sizes. The outside diameter 
would be the same for each sleeve. To do it you put the wire in the
center hole, bend it toward the desired side (whichever V is for the
length of grab iron you want. Then place the tool with the wire inserted
and bent (the first 90 degree bend) on a flat surface and bend the wire
up into the appropriate V. Cut the wire where desired to give two legs
of the desired length. It also could have a slot as long as the longest
grab and deep enough for the drop grab bends so that the ends could be
bent down to form a drop grab. I would guess that the Vs should be
positioned and notched for 14", 16", 18", 20", 22" and 24". If there is
not enough room on the spiral for all those, then a pair of tools might
be needed. And the length of grabs should be researched to include all
the common length. I wouldn't bother with lengths for diesels, although
passenger car grabs might make sense. I am thinking that t he tools
should probably be metal, rather than plastic, as constant use will wear
out plastic.

Spen




 



Almufti Hishman
 

Hi,
Here is what I am using. .040 styrene base.
I snip the wire ends from the back, the base thickness provides sufficient length to insert into body side holes.
No end bends or bolt detail obviously.

Regards,
Jeff Oliver


Eric Hansmann
 

Here’s a recent tip from the MRH forum.

https://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/34779?page=1

 

 

Maybe this can inspire something different yet versatile.

 

 

Eric Hansmann

Murfreesboro, TN

 

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io
Sent: Friday, March 1, 2019 8:43 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: [RealSTMFC] Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig

 

Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale, and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model. 

 

What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work. 

 

I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of the tool when the project is completed.

 

Any ideas? Please share them with me!

 

Craig Bisgeier

 

cbisgeier -at- AmesvilleShops.com


jerryglow2
 

I wish I could find them because years ago Terry Weigman engraved a pair of "duckbill" pliers to bend grabs for the Proto 2000 gondola. You bent wire to proper width then used the pliers to get the drop.

Here's a link to one I so equipped:
https://web.archive.org/web/20151002172808/http://home.comcast.net/~jerryglow/modeling/RI_gon.html


Almufti Hishman
 

Maybe I should explain about the drop grabs.
I make straight ones with a bit longer legs.
I jam the grab into the drop jig, to the stop, and use the divot in the top to hold the wire while I bend the legs down.
Then I clip the wire from the bottom.

Regards,
Jeff Oliver


Almufti Hishman
 

Here is a P2K gondola with grabs I made using my jig.

Regards,
Jeff Oliver


Scott
 

I got the one from UMM Usa that has a smooth side on it.  I measure the holes using a caliper then find where it matches up on jig and put a couple of pencil makes thrn bend as many ad I need.  One cut to ho scale sizes would be extremely helpful though.

http://umm-usa.com/onlinestore/product_info.php?cPath=21_225&products_id=6597

Scott McDonald


Charlie Vlk
 

All-

If there were a way to provide for Ladder Rests in the forming tool that would be useful for locomotive and passenger cars.  Maybe one size for the rests would be okay as they were likely sized for a ladder which would be independent on the spacing of the grab mounting.

I don’t know if the L-shaped grabs on cabooses and house car roofs were standard size but that might be another style to consider in the tool.

If anyone is going to do one don’t forget N Scale…I think 0.08 would be a reasonable size wire….oversize but practical.  Any list members that have experience should chime in.  

Other scale guys can also throw their hat in the ring…

Charlie Vlk


Nelson Moyer
 

I’ve made styrene jigs for straight, drop, half drop, and corner grab irons as well as straight top mounted uncoupling levers, but I haven’t figured out a jig design for bending bottom mounted uncoupling levers like those from Detail Associates. I’ve bent several pairs by hand, but it’s hard to bend two that are exactly alike. I’ve read Lester’s post on bending grabs where he uses measurements marked on an index card as a pattern. Has anybody figured out a styrene gig arrangement that works?

 

Nelson Moyer

 

From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Eric Hansmann
Sent: Friday, March 01, 2019 11:42 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig

 

Here’s a recent tip from the MRH forum.

https://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/34779?page=1

 

 

Maybe this can inspire something different yet versatile.

 

 

Eric Hansmann

Murfreesboro, TN

 


jerryglow2
 

When I did my P2K P&LE gon I found pics showing it with ladders instead of grabs.

My model  https://web.archive.org/web/20151002172808/http://home.comcast.net/~jerryglow/modeling/PLE_gon.html


jerryglow2
 

Nelson Moyer inquired has anybody figured out a styrene gig arrangement that works?

I make marks on my pliers at appropriate portions for each bend


Curt Fortenberry
 


My homemade styrene jig is a copy of the type found in PBL Sn3 kits.  just holes drilled at various length from the edge.  The edge has a 45 degree bevel to overbend slightly so the wire rebounds to a 90 degree angle.  I use a thickness suitable for me that when I flush cut the wire from the backside, it's the right length I need.

Curt Fortenberry


Gatwood, Elden J SAD
 

Guys;

I have a couple cheap needlenose pliers I carved grooves into the jaws, to do perfect "18"" straight and drop grabs by the dozen. Unlike styrene or resin jigs, they last forever. See attached, for example.

Elden Gatwood

-----Original Message-----
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Nelson Moyer
Sent: Friday, March 1, 2019 1:39 PM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: [Non-DoD Source] Re: [RealSTMFC] Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig

I’ve made styrene jigs for straight, drop, half drop, and corner grab irons as well as straight top mounted uncoupling levers, but I haven’t figured out a jig design for bending bottom mounted uncoupling levers like those from Detail Associates. I’ve bent several pairs by hand, but it’s hard to bend two that are exactly alike. I’ve read Lester’s post on bending grabs where he uses measurements marked on an index card as a pattern. Has anybody figured out a styrene gig arrangement that works?



Nelson Moyer



From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Eric Hansmann
Sent: Friday, March 01, 2019 11:42 AM
To: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Help me design a new Grab Iron Bending Jig



Here’s a recent tip from the MRH forum.

Blockedhttps://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/34779?page=1





Maybe this can inspire something different yet versatile.





Eric Hansmann

Murfreesboro, TN


Tim O'Connor
 

AMB makes a multi-purpose grab iron bending jig in acrylic. And Tichy includes wire bending
jigs in some freight car kits.

Tim O'

On 3/1/2019 9:42 AM, Craig Bisgeier via Groups.Io wrote:
Hey folks - I'm thinking about designing a tool for bending grab irons that can be 3D printed. I know that Micro-Mark has a tool for sale, and I could use that as a starting point. But I thought I would open this up to the braintrust and see if there are any thoughts on designing such a tool that doesn't necessarily follow that model.
What I'm looking for is something adjustable and repeatable that allows grabs to be sized to any length, or at least many lengths. It should have a feature that alows the user to set a particular size with a groove, stop or fence that the user can place the wire against and bend many grabs to the same size without guess work.
I have some ideas on this of my own but I'd like to see what others can come up with. If someone can help provide useful ideas that lead to a workable tool I'll gladly provide them with a finished copy of the tool when the project is completed.
Any ideas? Please share them with me!
Craig Bisgeier
cbisgeier -at- AmesvilleShops.com
--
*Tim O'Connor*
*Sterling, Massachusetts*


Tim O'Connor
 


LOL. Bruce, read the comment on that page - "useless" for HO scale.

But like I said, AMB and Tichy already make them specifically for HO scale.

And, well, it ain't exactly rocket science to make one for ourselves. :-)

If I recall correctly, the others also provide for corner grabs.



On 3/1/2019 11:42 AM, Bruce Smith wrote:
Gang,

Sounds like you mean this:

Regards

Bruce



--
Tim O'Connor
Sterling, Massachusetts