Here you can see my fancy wiring job along with the
wing-nut, which makes removing the wire nice and easy. Also, note the
burned area around the hole. I found out that once the wire was hot it
also became loose. I tried tightening the wire as much as I could while
it was cold but no
matter how tight I made it, the wire came loose when heated so this wasn't going to
work. On a side note, I enlarged the hole in the base to 1/4" once I found out it was touching the wood
just to be on the safe side. But I'll need to fix this loose wire
|To address the loose cutting wire problem I decided to
make the Nichrome wire spring loaded. The first order of business would
is to make the
screw hole that holds the wire into a slot. This way when I
have it under spring pressure it can move up and down. To make this slot
I removed the arm and used a 3/16" end mill to make a slot using my
For the spring part, I bent some sheet metal into a 'C' shape
to fit over the arm. Once I had this made I then started experimenting
with different size springs that I had and placed them between the
and my new 'C' shaped piece. The one that you see in the picture worked
I placed the C shaped piece over the wooden arm, then started
applying pressure to the top of my new device and marked a few spots.
The two small red marks represent the light and heavy amounts of spring
pressure that I thought would work so I made a third mark that would be
used for my starting point.
Here is what it looks like installed. I didn't bend the 'C' shaped piece
very well and as you can see I needed to add some washers to the inside as
spacers. No big deal because it worked so I was happy.
On the other hand, I did discover something that I didn't expect.
When I tried the foam wire cutter again with my new spring arrangement,
I could hear an eerie sound coming from the Nichrome wire while it was
being heated. Now the spring tension on this cutting wire is about as
tight as a guitar string and makes a sound like one when you pluck it.
Yes I plucked it a few times because that's what guys do. What can I
say...we're easily amused....
Anyways, as the cutting wire gets heated, the wire would loosen like I
said before. But as this Nichrome wire looses tension the spring is
applying pressure making the wire tight again, which makes it change
pitch a few times until it stabilizes. This change in pitch makes a
sound like you're tightening and loosening the wire while plucking it at the same
time (yes I did that too so that's how I know what it sounded like. What
can I say...I was having fun).
Now that it works, it's time to try my hand at cutting out some foam
for my new rifle case. Speaking of my new case, let's take a look at
what I'll be working on.
The Rifle Case
My new rifle case is
made by Pelican, model 1750. This case is 53" long x 6 1/8" thick x 16"
inches wide and weighs 25 1/2 pounds empty. Pelican claims this case is
unbreakable, watertight, airtight, dustproof, chemical resistant and
corrosion proof and offers total protection for your equipment. It's
made of Ultra High Impact structural copolymer that makes it strong and
durable and it comes with a three piece foam set. This means that your
equipment can fit into the high density foam of the case for total
protection against impact, vibration or shock, which I'll talk more about
This case has a large 1/4" neoprene waterproof O-ring seal and an automatic purge valve for
quick equalization after changes in atmospheric pressure to make it easy
to open. Pelican also offers a personalized nameplate service if you
want it. This case is NATO codified and tested to MIL C-4150J (Military
Standard), IP-67 (Ingress Protection) and ATA (Air Transportation
Association). One of the best features of the Pelican company is this case
is unconditionally guaranteed, FOREVER!!
Colors: black, Military green, or desert tan
Watertight, crushproof, and dust proof
Easy open Double Throw latches
Open cell core with solid wall design - strong and light weight
Automatic Pressure Equalization Valve
Fold down handles
Strong polyurethane wheels with stainless steel bearings
Stainless steel hardware and padlock protectors
3-piece foam set
Personalized nameplate service available
Dimensions Inside: 50.50" x 13.50" x 5.25"
Dimensions Outside: 53.00" x 16.00" x 6.12"
Lid Depth: 1.75"
Bottom Depth: 3.50"
Total Depth: 5.25"
Interior Cubic Volume: 2.07 cubic feet
Weight with foam: 25.57 lbs.
Weight without foam: 23.59 lbs.
Buoyancy: 187.39 lbs.
Temperature Range: -40 / 210° F
With large fold down handles this case is really easy to
double-throw latches are strong and easy to open: it's the classic "C"
clamp design with a secondary movement that works like a pry bar to
start the release and offers plenty of leverage to open with a light
On the bottom side are two strong polyurethane wheels with
stainless steel bearings. This should help me get from one spot to
another if I don't want to carry it.
To aid in pulling the case is a fold down handle on the opposite end of the
wheels. This is good news because the rifle/case
combo will weigh close to 40 pounds.
These cases have a stainless steel hasp and padlock protectors
to provide added strength, extra security against cutting and theft at both ends,
which are a Pelican exclusive. And with four easy to use latches it seals up quick and easy.
This should give you an idea of how large the center
fold down handle is. And all
of the edges have a nice radius so it's easy to carry. Pelican cases are
made with a proprietary combination of copolymers, using an open
cell core and solid wall construction, which is stronger and lighter
than a solid core wall. Stainless steel pins are used in hinges and