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Group Description

Doing something for the world with machine-tool making techniques from the 1830s to the 1960s.

Your developing world school needs almost-free machine tools?

Your developing world factory needs unavailable spare parts?

You need a complex part that is too expensive to have made?

Need to bootstrap a factory but only have a few bucks?

No problem!

First came the Multimachine, a home-built milling machine that could be used as an all purpose machine tool. It was a 2007 Popular Mechanics DIY project of the year and the centerpiece of Maker Faire Africa in 2009. It could be be built using only automotive scrap and steel bar. IT CAN PERFORM ALMOST EVERY METAL MACHINING OPERATION!

Our latest project comes from a forgotten but prize winning design for a 1915 cannon shell making machine that was made from concrete. It is a general purpose screw cutting metal lathe (the basis of all industrial production) that is built using only concrete mix and scrap.

Alternative methods of construction will be shown including one that needs no outside machining and one that uses no metal fasteners for the concrete form and very few screws, bolts or nuts.

Every technique we use has been proven for over 95 years.

Only a very small amount of welding, regular carpenter's and mechanic's tools and a $10 dial test indicator are needed.

A current "mini" project is the adaptation of an Asian "long tail" boat design for use in Lake Victoria (a lathe builder there needed a way to make a few bucks to buy tools and materials).


THE UPDATED "HOW TO BUILD MANUAL" IS AT http://blog.makezine.com/projects/the-multimachine-150-12-swing-metal-lathemilldrill/ (now 65,000 hits)


BE SURE TO READ the "How to Build a MultiMachine" booklet at the top of the list in the "Files" folder.

See a 75 minute long (but very amateurish!) video of the machine at http://opensourcemachine.org/the-multimachine/multimachine-video

Group Information

  • 7409
  • Crafts
  • Aug 17, 2004
  • English

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