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Got a gripe or complaint about something or somebody? Throw your two cents in here. We want to hear what you have to say. No politics, keep it clean.
Post Tue Nov 28, 2006 10:24 pm

Posts: 42
Location: houston, texas
The other night I got disgusted watching the Discovery Channel show, American Hot Rod. It showed a young beginner guy and a supposed older experienced mechanic trying to drill an existing hole to 5/8" diameter. They went into the machine shop (very nice looking but almost too clean to be "real") and proceeded to clamp the part into a drill vise but failed to clamp the vise to the drill table. The drill "grabbed" and flung the vise and part across the floor. Somebody was lucky they didn't get their fingers broke or their teeth knocked out.

A 5/8" end mill should have been used to open the first 1/4" as a "pilot guide hole" and then a 5/8" drill bit to finish it.

Rather than show the mistake of not clamping the vise to the table they proceeded to make each other look stupid. It seemed real flaky to me like after the mishap they quickly shot a "beginning scene" stating "don't break the drill bit".

Stupid is forever but ignorance can be fixed. I have worked in and around machine shops all of my adult life and motorcycle shops too. I once saw somebody severly injure themselves (SEVERED HAND) because they had a pair of gloves on. They were ignorant, nobody told them to not wear gloves around machiney, band saws included. Jesus forgives, machines don't.

Somewhere out there is a good hearted beginner that probably wanted a drill press for Christmas. A good imported one isn't that expensive and they are a very handy addition for any do it yourselfers garage. Guys wife is now thinking of how dangerous one is, hubby won't get one for Christmas.

Discovery Channel could do better with the reality TV concept, mistakes are part of life but they should have shown how to prevent them, how to learn from them.

End of sermon,
-little stan

Post Wed Nov 29, 2006 5:28 am
Pa Site Admin

Posts: 5843
Location: Ohio USA

They definately should have pointed out their mistake. Machines can kill. I know this to well from my decades of machine shop experience. An aquaintance of mines' brother was wearing gloves while operating a large horizonal boring mill. Why he put his hand on the rotating quil is anyones guess. The quil grabbed the glove, and instantly yanked and pulled him into the large cutters path between the table and the cutter. He wasn't recognizable and the mess was sickening.

Another fella was leaning out over the rotating table of a large vertical boring mill. Apparently he leaned out a bit to far, maybe to view the on going cut. No one will ever know the real reason for his carelessness. He slipped off his footing and fell onto the rotating table. Before the table could make even a 1/4 turn, the force threw him off to the side edge of the table between the machines uprights were he remained pinned for the next few rotations of the table. It only took the next few rotations to chew him up into chunks. Another repulsive sickening mess and loss of life.

I have more horror stories but I will tell only one more. In this story the fella lives. I am operating a large lathe and across from me is this young fella operating a smaller lathe. He was polishing a shaft journal at the time and the spindle was spinning at around 650 rpm in reverse direction. His selected polishing tool was emery cloth. To begin with, he chose to long a length of the cloth. Long lengths of emery cloth tend to lasso itself in a choking fashion if you are not extremely careful. Then I witnessed him put a pair of gloves on to do this polishing. I yelled at him and said he could get himself hurt wearing those. He snubbed me off and did it his way anyhow. Not a moment went by when he began to polish when I saw his body [this was a big boy of around 280 lbs. x 6'3'' tall] lift straight up off the floor, over the machine, and down onto his back. His back was broken in several places. He had many lascerations and cuts to boot. Yeah....the fella lived but his family feeds, bathes, and relieves him to this day. Pa

Post Wed Nov 29, 2006 8:03 am

Posts: 42
Location: houston, texas

Pretty hard stories if you ask me, I actually didn't see Linda (a very pretty young hispanic girl in her early 20's) actually sever her hand, I looked up from my machine as she started to scream. Guy next to her vomited and passed out, a young Vietnemese guy and I put floor dry on the blood as the leadman, Kenneth put his arm around her and quickly walked her to the first aid room. This was in 1978 in Houston.

We were lucky in the fact that the severed hand was re-attached due to the oddest reasons, it happened at 1st/2nd shift change. The dayshift foreman, Harold, had a inspector buddy who worked 2nd, they were both heavy drinkers. Gus would always come to work with a hot six-pack, a bag of ice and a Igloo cooler since stores would be closed when he got off. Harold went out into the parking lot, got the cooler and ice, packed the hand down in it. Life flight was in its infacy at the time but they did a commendable job in flying Linda to Herman hospital where they re-attached her hand. Since it was severed at her wrist she lost 1/2 of the coaxial action and it was 1.00" shorter.

Why not a reality custom show that doesn't show people to be stupid or careless, more hands on showing and explaining how custom cars and bikes are done. Show somebody on a lathe and mill explaining each process of the operation, stress safety glasses, shoes, etc. "OK to do this at home but be careful, find a buddy who's done it before to help".

Who of us want to see "Mikey" at OCC getting a manicure or a facial when there are other channels to watch with far better looking clients? I watched of few episodes of a show called Milwaukee Steel I think, and thought it was better.

-little stan
"your not riding unless your gliding"

Post Wed Nov 29, 2006 8:09 pm

Posts: 27
Location: NJ

It's true, the shop is a serious place. Tv shows don't show the realities of the shop. How many times do you see people on tv without safety glasses, etc? I've seen some bad accidents over the years. The worst I've seen was a coworker who got sucked into an engine lathe. He was turning a rough shaft that was about 2 feet long. He was wearing a long sleeve thermal and a long sleeve work shirt. He used a thin piece of flat stock on the cross slide to prevent coolant from going everywhere. He was adjusting the coolant hose, which was near the back of machine, when the rough shaft grabbed his shirts. Before he knew it both shirts were ripped off of him and wrapped around the shaft sucking him into the shaft. His neck went right into the thin piece of stock and cut him pretty badly. Fortunately he hit the brake. We heard him screaming and had to cut his shirts off the shaft to free him. We called 911 and he went and got sewn up. Something like 130 stiches on the outside and 60 on the inside. He was shaken up and thanked me and the other guy who helped him. Ever since then I've never worn a long sleeve shirt in the shop. You always have to have your thinking cap on in the shop. Machines have no emotion and need to be respected.

Post Wed Nov 29, 2006 9:40 pm
Pa Site Admin

Posts: 5843
Location: Ohio USA

Right On !! Serious Respect !!!!! Pa

Post Wed Nov 29, 2006 10:05 pm

Posts: 42
Location: houston, texas
Pa and HD:

I was fortunate to have a good shop teacher in high school, no rings, no long sleeves, no watches, no neckties, no nothing left anywhere for a machine to grab you. Hippie kids had to tuck their hair under their collar. Maybe this is why I'm now middle aged, got all of my fingers but I do have one little scar on my face from running a Warner Swassey 4A, big hot number six chip (about .020" feed, 1/4" doc on steel) burned into my skin before I could get it off.

The metal shop at my high school had a legend of a kid (back in the early 60's) who allegedly sleeved down a flare gun to 12 gauge! Made the sleeve on a little logan lathe! One year of typing, two years of metal shop, one year of drafting set my career for the next 30 years! I made more money than a lot of degreed people, now I'm on my own in my own shop.

High schools no longer offer the woodshop, metalshop, auto mechanics or FFA anymore. Its no wonder why our kids are so ignorant, though not stupid.

-little stan

You can eat with false teeth,
you can walk with a wooden leg,
but you can't see with a glass eye.

Post Fri Dec 01, 2006 9:09 am

Posts: 325
Location: Viola, WI

i think you guys are right on with how the tv shows fail to show the reality of what can happen to people when they work around rotating machinery or cut up and act stupid in a shop enviorment. they seem to glorify all these losers who are supposed to be professional craftsman and such who couldn't wrench their way out of a wet paper bag.

i know myself only too well what happens with carelessness in the shop enviorment. back in 1978 i was injured in a machine shop accident myself. here where i live on the water in south louisiana, everything is geared to the oilfield way of life. i was 20 and working in a marine machine shop that specialized in large propeller shafts, rudders and boat hardware. my main work was machining the larger shafts about 8 or 9 inches in diameter and up to 40 feet long. these shafts weighed anywhere from 8-10 thousand pounds each.

i was taking a new blank off the top of the stack in the storage area when one of the ones on the end spit out the side and rolled on me and crushed my feet. that particular one was about 9500 pounds. luckily for me i was wearing tennis shoes as steel toe boots with that kind of weight would have cut off my toes regardless of what people might say about that issue. to make a long story short, after surgery, a couple weeks in the hospital and taking over a year to be able to get around half ass decent, i take shop safety very seriously but i see lots of people that think it cant happen to them and they really have no idea what can happen.

its funny how people will go to all lengths to keep you from smoking or drinking or something like that but it doesn't matter if network tv promotes being stupid around equipment or enviorments that will kill you in the blink of an eye.

Post Fri Dec 01, 2006 1:57 pm

Posts: 42
Location: houston, texas
Maybe its time that we either send the past post's that I started to Discovery Channel (if they aren't already reading it) or start our own reality show called This Old Bike. Instead of a fancy squeaky clean shop show some real old school by working out of a residential garage, one that just has the basic tools. Get an old Shovelhead, tear it down to the frame, follow the builder to the chrome shop, the motorshop, the painters. Show some basic building with basic tools, no fat tired chopper stuff, just show how a bike is torn down and rebuilt. Show young people of how to take a really ragged out bike (one that is bought cheap) and just show how thousands of people like us build one from used stuff we find at the shops or thru our friends. End the series with the builder heading out of town on his handiwork.

What ya'll think about that?

-little stanley

Post Fri Dec 01, 2006 8:16 pm
Pa Site Admin

Posts: 5843
Location: Ohio USA

I like the idea but who will air it for us ? Who will sponsor us ? Sponsorship puts the shows on the air. At best...we might get a one night airing on PBS. I think it all comes down to sponsors. Great idea though !! Pa

Post Sat Dec 02, 2006 5:02 am

Posts: 42
Location: houston, texas

Sponsors would be the do it yourself companies, Harbor Frieght, Northern Tool, Sears and Roebuck (Craftsman). J&P would be a good sponsor, show each end of a phone conversation ordering parts.

The residential shop would have nothing more than a basic set of hand tools, a bench grinder, a vise mounted on the necessary workbench and maybe even a drill press which started this thread.

A good episode would show tanks and fenders being stripped with strip-ease, wire brush, water hose and rubber gloves. Send the frame out to the sand blasters but try and do as much as possible yourself with spray cans.

Try and find somebody young, poor and enthusiastic that wants a scooter. Have some old skoolers like us in the background coaching, this way we could show off the restored stockers and bobbers that all of us so dearly love and cherish.

-little stan

Post Sat Dec 02, 2006 7:48 am

Posts: 125
Location: Southeast AZ
I think it's a great idea. There are many of us without mentors who still have so much to learn. I have many co workers who ride and wrench but we are all in the same boat. Many a time we have dicussed the BBO series as well as OCC (gag) and have all said the same thing- wish there was a series that REALLY showed how to do things properly and in detail. Southern Steel came the closest but it seems to be gone forever. A program as you propose would have MANY dedicated viewers in my area and I know we can't be the only ones.

As has been prviously stated, these things take money and know how- of which I have neither. Perhaps if the Discovery channel were made aware of what folks REALLY want to see they would produce something more along these lines?

Yeah, right. And Jesus is going to hop down from heaven and have breakfast with me too.
Aries51 (AKA Graybeard)

"Get on your bad motor scooter and ride"-Sammy Hagar

Post Sat Dec 02, 2006 8:00 am

Posts: 630
Location: belgium
Graybeard I'll gladly join in for the breakfast 8)

Post Thu Dec 07, 2006 6:49 pm

Posts: 270
Location: Grand Marais,Minnesota USA
:shock: I'm amazed every time I watch those shows at how unsafe they all are,especially the Tuetles...those all in one cone shaped drill bits,cutting things off with a die grinder without the aid of a vise or safety glasses and nobody I've EVER seen on any of these programs use a torque wrench or really tightens anything up....I've also NEVER seen any of these guys tear a motor apart and put it back together....they look like bolt on heros to me...anybody can follow a diagram and bolt something together(even me)...the best learning tool a young fellow (or girl)can have is a big old pile of American Iron mags,who in every issue the guy tears something down,improves it,then puts it back together....all in photographic and text detail....and always expressing how dangerous these tools and machines are....yeah I saw a guy chop off a part of his hand on a punch press trying to set a record for parts per hour,and he beat the safety gate...just once is all it takes,machines don't care what they cut...metal or hand, all the same to them! the sad thing about this was that this guy beat the record alot because he was 64 and 7/8ths years old and he was a month and a half away from retirement...lets all be safe out there......peace,Paul

Post Fri Dec 08, 2006 1:55 pm

Posts: 304
Location: oklahoma usa
Shows like Amer. Hot Rod, Amer. Chopper, etc really set me off. What's really sad is to go their website discussion boards and see how many groupies are fawning all over these people on the misguided assumption that any of them know what they're doing.

With AHR it appears that none of them have a mechanical clue. Every engine install it's the same old thing; backfiring, coughing, call in the "outside experts" at times all for nothing more than no one there seems to realize No. 1 cylinder should be brought up first and the distributor timed accordingly. As basic as it gets and they have no idea.

OCC is also just as ridiculous. Friend of mine, biker of 35 years and has run a farm implement shop for near as many, had a chance to see some of OCCs work up close and go over it. Total junk.
There was a farm show at the fairgrounds here and he had to attend it due to his position in the company, which is a multi-line tractor, combine dealer, along with being a Dixie Chopper franchise.

He got to view a few films of the DC construction, much of what was not shown on TV and he said they were actually pounding axles in with 25 pound sledges and the OCC people who attended were real evasive when he asked WTF that was all about.
He said that DC bike is a real heap and OCC values it at "1 million". HA!
Surely with all of that money floating around OCC can afford a set of drill bits instead of using that one cone bit for every hole.

Another one of his chores at this farm show was to "disable" the Snap-On Tools bike so it would not start. He was also not given an answer as to why they wanted this done. Simply removed the starter solenoid and when some bystander wanted to hear it run they were told "well, we had a part failure and no can do".
Pretty damned pathetic IMHO. Enough ranting I guess. :x

Post Sat Dec 09, 2006 9:27 am

Posts: 42
Location: houston, texas

Makes me wonder about OCC, have they ever been busted down a long way from home wondering how to fix a bike long out of production with few or no resources? Have they ever been in an accident or saw your life flash in front of you on a bike because something was overlooked and put together wrong? Money? Have they ever been poor and was given some parts from friends who cared? Have they ever been caught up in bad weather (like snow), no chase truck, no place to run, no place to hide? Have they ever had a wonderful and memorable evening with their friends, sleeping under a bridge while it rained all night? Have they ever been refused admittance at a bar because you wore a black tee-shirt and were considered "un-cool"? Have they ever held a buddies wife while she cried after her husband got killed from a motorcycle wreck?

I've been thru all of this, I feel that all of us are "real bikers" but do they dare call themselves that? Being a biker can't be bought which is what so many TV shows seeming show - you have to earn the title of "biker" . No matter what we see on TV we know who we are and we'll be around long after they and the ignorant people they influence are long gone.

-little stan

[i]Pills are running low,
and so is the grass.
Gonna stop my hog
and drink the gas

Post Sat Dec 09, 2006 5:50 pm

Posts: 1050
Location: Greenbackville, Virginia, USA
Yeah, i've done a lot of stupid things (one time each only) and been very, very lucky, just a few scars. Used to wash engine parts in an open bucket of gasoline, and throw lit cigarettes into it, after an "incident" it was a real hot topic at the dinner table. Lost a sleeve to a drill press. Set my pants on fire using a cutting torch. Didn't use jack stands because i was in a hurry, once. I got out with just bruises, not like one of my friends-9 months in an out of the hospital while they put his chest back together. And the list goes on.
Ive only watched the occ guys on tv twice, once because i was curious, once because my son was curious. I looked over one of their "production" bikes, piece of crap with wires hanging, cables rubbing on paint, ect.
I got a problem with the "biker build off" series also. Even though they have real builders doing them, they don't (usually) show all the blood, sweat, tears and temper tantrums getting things to fit properly.
Bah, just venting. It IS a very dangerous world out there. G :(

Post Sat Jun 16, 2007 9:55 am

Posts: 148
Location: Dorothy, NJ. USA

In my life I had the opertunity to work in a small production shop, Good Automatic Windlass, making anchor picker uppers. The guys working there showed the young hippie kid how to do things SAFE! 30 years later I am still using that knowledge and mentally thanking them. They are not responsible for me burning a hole thru my wallet into my ass being careless with an acetelene torch. That was a lesson learned all on my own. Honest

Post Tue Apr 29, 2008 8:16 pm

Posts: 74
Location: Wichita, KS
First I'ld like to say "There is no such thing as being to safe". I was union safety committeeman out in San Diego building Aircraft. So many ac`cidents can be prevented "JUST FROM NOT BEING STUPID OR PIGHEADED). Never disable the safety on air tools or machinery. My partner took the end of his thumb off with a rivet squeeze cause the safety had been by-passed and, while holding it in his lap, bent forward reaching for another tool. Another BIG thing for me is safety glasses. You only get 2 eye balls and they're unrepairable. While eye injuries are infrequent (which seems to be the excuse for not wearing safety equipment at any time) when it does happen it can be devastating.

Love the "This Old Bike" idea. There is something similar in context called "Yankee Workshop", or something like that on PBS. Yea, sponsorship would be key to getting it on broadcast TV. Who knows, maybe with all the old and antique parts S&S offers, they could sponsor.

Post Tue Apr 29, 2008 9:51 pm

Posts: 1538
1 question: If the occrapper guys build such fantastic bikes.

Why is it that their personal bikes are from HARLEY DAVIDSON ???
That really speakes volumes for them.

I still laugh when I am reminded about when Jr & some other guy drilled thru a fender on the bike & run the bit right thru the back tire !!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:


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