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  • Axminster AWFS18

    Yay!

    Axminster delivered a nice new AWFS18 to me today, after I finally got some cash together. It looks real nice sitting on its stand. And I like that the manual has a full exploded diagram of all the parts of this supposed Hegner clone. I can use that to help with the Meccano Mk III...

    First question...how should I get rid of all the greasy gunk on the saw table? I have never had a tool that came covered in golden syrup before. What's the solvent of choice for these things?

    Chris
    "If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg."

    Saws: AWSF18, Meccano Mk II

  • #2
    Mineral spirits should remove it...or Goo Gone...

    Bob
    www.GrobetUSA.com

    Comment


    • #3
      You should also be able to remove the gunk with methylated spirits, Chris.

      I'm dying to hear how you get on with your new saw - you're the first person I know who's got one and they look to be an absolute bargain.

      Gill
      There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
      (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)

      Comment


      • #4
        Kerosene will also remove it.
        Gary from Ohio
        Delta P-20

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        • #5
          White spirit did the job, thanks guys.

          Gill - thought you might be interested First impressions are that it is very solid, very heavy, the arms as well as the base. The instructions are in oriental-english which are hard to puzzle out but I have it set up now and cutting.

          The clamping seems complex, I'll post close-up photographs of the clamping system later if you like. I have left the starter blade in it for now - the instructions for changing a blade are in Taiwenglish and not exactly easy to follow. In fact it was hard enough working out how to switch it on - there is a circuit breaker unit which has to be opened and switched on first. ("Switch on the machine with the power switch M by the switch jack down" is the inscrutable instruction).

          I am not accustomed to listening to scrollsaws humming, but my impression is that it is a pretty quiet machine. The manual suggests 73dB which is about conversation level. My partner could not hear it downstairs while watching TV.

          Very little vibration at all from 400-800spm and then I began to feel a tingle in my legs from the floorboards. I guess the sense of vibration peaked about 1200spm and then lessened at 1400spm. The machine itself was vibrating but hardly moving at all, nearly all the vibration seemed to be transmitting to the floor. I have the machine bolted to the Axminster stand (it doesn't quite fit, you can't use the holes in the stand both fore and aft) which seems a very basic stand.

          Some of the peripheral facilities are plasticky. The tilt is basic, with a sticker (position out by 2 degrees) to show the angle. ("Turn knob S approx 1 revolution against the clockwise direction. Bend the working table into the desired angle...") - in other words the knob loosens the table tilt and then you move the table with your hands, rather than using a lever or a geared movement to a precise angle. So if you wanted to repeat angles you had better be very precise and make notes.

          However the saw itself seems very solid, very quiet, and with little vibration - at least, I don't know how much vibration other saws have, but I think when you feel it in your thighs before you see the table move it is probably a good sign?

          Chris
          "If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg."

          Saws: AWSF18, Meccano Mk II

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by chrispuzzle
            I think when you feel it in your thighs before you see the table move it is probably a good sign?
            I'd say so, especially if you're operating a fret saw at the time .

            Seriously, it sounds as if the stand you've got your saw mounted on might not be up to the task and that's why you can feel vibration. I usually find the best test of a saw for vibration is to plonk it on a concrete floor and operate it there for a few seconds. You might find that adding Carl's sandbox will do a lot to reduce vibration, or if you've got a marble slab lying around you could mount the saw on that. The trick is to add as much mass as possible to the saw. Just don't use so-called anti-vibration matting.

            When this saw first appeared I expressed reservations about the blade changing mechanism so I'm not surprised you've identified this early on as a weakness. Have you considered fitting a proper Hegner Quick Release blade clamp? They don't cost much and looking at the manual they should fit the Axminster...

            Repeat angles can be a problem. Probably the best bet here is to make a cut into a block of wood at least 18mm thick whenever you set your table at an angle. Then you can refer to it if you ever need to repeat the angle.

            Thanks for the report - it sounds as if AWFS18 is very good value for money .

            Gill
            There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
            (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Gill
              Have you considered fitting a proper Hegner Quick Release blade clamp? They don't cost much and looking at the manual they should fit the Axminster...
              Yes, they look like a good idea as long as they fit. Do you know what the dimensions of Hegner clamps are? I don't see why they wouldn't work if they are the same size. The Axminster clamps look very like standard Hegner clamps. I wonder how well they will cope with 2/0 blades. I assume the Hegner Quick Release clamps have no problem with very thin blades?

              The clamping instructions in the manual have some wonderful phrases. "Removing your cuts if necessary and remainder stucco from the protection hood" is very expressive.

              Chris
              "If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg."

              Saws: AWSF18, Meccano Mk II

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by chrispuzzle
                Do you know what the dimensions of Hegner clamps are?
                Not off the top of my head. I'm about to go out for the evening but I'll measure mine tomorrow and let you know. If I forget, give me a nudge.

                Gill
                There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
                (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Gill - Have a great evening. There's no hurry on the clamp data, since I'll want to be giving these ones a thorough workout before I go and splash out on Hegners.

                  Chris
                  "If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg."

                  Saws: AWSF18, Meccano Mk II

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    changing blades

                    The blade change, once I figured it out, isn't as bad as I had thought it might be. Don't know if other saws do this, but the Axminster 18" has a jig at the side of the table where you can lay the V-clamps to get the correct spacing for the blade.

                    I did have trouble putting the blade in "perfectly centrically" at first - partly because my eyesight is not so hot - but a bit of lateral thinking (put it in the first clamp approximately, then do the second clamp, then loosen and adjust the first clamp) turned what had been several minutes fiddling and squinting into a much quicker process.

                    Chris
                    "If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg."

                    Saws: AWSF18, Meccano Mk II

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi Chris

                      The Hegner has an identical jig. Once you've had a bit of practice, getting the blades into the V-clamps will be a doddle. I've never had any problems. However, you could make a jig out of plywood with recesses which the V-clamps would rest in while you made whatever adjustments were necessary.

                      Gill
                      There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
                      (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Gill, I also have a Hegner and I didn't understand your instructions for the plywood jig or the need of r it. BTW, the clamps are in two sizes #5 and #7 and they run $19.95 a pair
                        Chris, You will love your new saw if it is anything like the Hegner. When I bought mine I was shopping around the Oregon state fair. There were several booths there selling Scrollsaws. I was carrying a drink with me without a top.. I asked to use the saw and while I did I set the drink on the table. The one with the fewest ripples is the one I bought. Of course I could afford it because a few days earlier four of a kind beat a full house..
                        Chuck D


                        When a work lifts your spirits and inspires bold and noble thoughts in you, do not look for any other standard to judge by: the work is good, the product of a master craftsman.
                        Jean De La Bruyere...

                        l
                        Hegner 18, Delta p-20, Griz 14 inch Band saw

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Hi Chuck

                          Don't worry about the jig - it was such a brief description of an idea floating inside my imagination that I'm not surprised you couldn't envision it. I'm sure Chris will soon learn to handle the blades anyway unless he's got a problem such as arthritis (or if he's as naturally clumsy as someone I've banished from my workshop for safety reasons ). If so, I'll draw a piccy to clarify matters.

                          I swear by the Quick Release clamps; I take it you do as well?

                          Gill
                          There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
                          (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Chuck -

                            That must have been a great hand! I never get four. I just feel I'm doing well to fold the full house when it's beaten...

                            http://www.axminster.co.uk/product-A...tsaw-32495.htm is a picture of the saw if you want to compare it to your Hegner. It cost about 40% of what the Hegner Multicut 2VS would have cost here in the UK. They look very similar and clearly Axminster's oriental manufacturers are copying a number of Hegner features, but I guess the proof of the pudding will be down the road in terms of reliability and wear and tear. But it is a good solid thing - nearly 64lbs weight - and has very little vibration, almost none at all at the slow speeds I'm most likely to use on puzzle work. (Although the more I see of other scrollers' work here, the more I want to try different projects).

                            Gill: I'm sure I'll get better at the clamps. The way the saw is set up in my workroom the light falls from the other side and so it is hard for me, with my incredibly thick spectacles, to see the clamp slot and the blade when they are in the jigs, both being the same dark grey metal.

                            One thing I'm not sure of when changing the clamps is where to apply tension first - the rear or the front? How do you know when to throw the clamp lever back? Or is it just trial and error with each machine?

                            Chris
                            "If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long as all you want is a penguin's egg."

                            Saws: AWSF18, Meccano Mk II

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              What I do probably isn't what other Hegner users do, but it's what the Hegner people from Hailsham told me to do and it seems to work !

                              To set up the saw, all the tension is released from the arms using the black knob over the top of the arms at the rear of the saw. Then the blade is secured in the clamps out of the saw. Next, the lower clamp is fitted into place in the lower clamp holder, followed by the top clamp in the top clamp holder (sorry if this sounds a bit Noddy - it's the way my thought process works ) making sure that the blade hasn't twisted. Twisting the blade during this process isn't easy, but I managed to do it once!

                              Lock the top clamp in place using the black screw at the front of the top arm. Now make sure that the tension release lever on the top arm is not relieving the tension - it should be taut. Finally, tighten the black knob over the arms at the rear so that you get the desired tension. I've been told that if you pluck the blade under tension you should hear something like a middle C; not being particuarly musical, I just like to hear a clear 'ping' and see that the blade doesn't have much sideways movement.

                              At this point, the Hegner manual says you should unscrew the black screw on the top arm at the front of the saw so that the top clamp is free to rock unimpeded. As I said earlier, the verbal advice of Hegner UK was not to do this - having the top clamp rock freely puts stress on the blade where it is gripped by the top clamp and bends it out of shape, causing more breakages.

                              When you want to release the blade, operate the tension release lever on the upper arm and remove the blade from the upper V-clamp without removing the clamp from the arm. To re-insert the blade (or insert a new blade), just put the blade back in place in the V-clamp, operate the tension release lever again so that tension is applied, and that's it.

                              As I mentioned, this isn't how the Hegner manual says you should operate the saw, but I do it this way under advice from Hegner and it seems to work fine. I daresay there'll be others here who do it differently. However, I've had my saw for several years now and there have been no adverse effects using it this way.

                              Gill
                              There is no opinion, however absurd, which men will not readily embrace as soon as they can be brought to the conviction that it is readily adopted.
                              (Schopenhauer, Die Kunst Recht zu Behalten)

                              Comment

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