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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am getting pretty much retired. Or at least tired :)

My son just got a very nice HAAS VF3 with full 4rth axis and high speed spindle. It is going in his all new machine shop. He has worked full time in this industry 20 years now, where I'm just a hobbyist hack.

So, I gave him the CAD models for the FN series of browning machine guns. He is currently making several 70% complete side plates. Good project to see how well stuff I've made will transfer to him.

PM me if you have an interest in any of these parts.

Karl
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
OK here is part 1 off the brand new HAAS VF3 with 4rth axis. It is a 70% side plate for the FN38. To finish the part, band saw all the extra stock around the perimeter and file to a nice finish. Then hack out the rest of the charge handle slot and file to a nice finish, the outline is evident and it has been chain drilled. About the same work on the return spring slot. On the inside the back plate slot has not been done. We have learned THE HARD WAY that not all weapons are the exact same length and slot location. this feature will need a manual milling machine to do the slot. Also all holes are drilled under size. They should be match drilled to finish.

The kid plans on FN30 model 52 and FN30 next. Help him pay for his new machine.

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The kid is on a roll. While running FN38s he finished the model for FN30, plans to run the first one this evening.

He REALLY LIKES his new Haas VF3. The Matsuura lost pa
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
he did not get enough commitments to make a second run. sold out first run right away.

The kid decided to become an owner operator of a semi truck and is now pursuing that gig. great money in this right now. We both agree that machining for firearm rebuilding is never going to pay the bills.
 

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he did not get enough commitments to make a second run. sold out first run right away.

The kid decided to become an owner operator of a semi truck and is now pursuing that gig. great money in this right now. We both agree that machining for firearm rebuilding is never going to pay the bills.
Wow I thought that machining anything was great business these days.
 

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Plus gun people are fundamentally cheap- Machining stuff is NOT cheap, an making precision parts is expensive. Machine cost. run time, your time, programming, materials - Folks want a part for $50, and the cost of materials and tooling alone for something like a plate ( made out of the right material) will be double that- When I had the first batch of MG08 feed arms made long ago - it took me almost 20 years to sell enough to break even. I had 1919 plates made for post guns and materials and machine time on CNC production machinery was expensive - I don't know how many plates you would sell, but the cost per plate including the 4140 oil quenched steel, will be over that $50 mark easily. Tooling wear on the material is significant. Now, if you want an aluminum plate- no problem.... and it is probably cheaper to make a 100% plate than a 70% plate .
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
"the kid" got "F"ed over at his factory job. If you work for a large corporation, sooner or later everybody gets sh*t on. he's at mid life and due for a career change anyway.

For $60K he got a decent semi tractor and flat bed trailer. Got his CDL and insurance all set. Right now, the job boards for trucking just go a begging for drivers to haul a load. All the work you can do is just sitting there. The opportunity to run your own trucking business has never been better.

I will still hire him for $20K a year to make parts for my belt fed addiction.

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Sweet. Good point on trucking being super good business right now. I know some guys that are making great money just as drivers in their first year. Add in the fact that Ohios unemployment office will pay you to go through the CDL course if you ask.
 
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