Thoughts on Building a Steam Car

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  December 1, 2006 I want to build a steam car or perhaps a steam motorcycle.  Why?  you ask.  Oh, just for fun, I reply. The first step in a big project is research.  I ordered the Essential Steam Power Library from  International Correspondence Schools, circa 1906.  Lindsay Books

Copper Plating and Etching Altoids Tins

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UPDATE: There's some great information on this page and it's comments, but I've recently published a far more comprehensive article here: Etching Tins with Salt Water and Electricity  With this project I wanted to try a number of new things: Magazine pages as cheap toner transfer media Copper electroplating Etching

Electrolytic Machining of Brass – Part II:

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After the perhaps overly optimistic attempt at electrolytic machining in Part I, I decided to try etching parts from thinner sheets of brass.  Sheet with thicknesses of .010 and .015" were chosen and I used the advanced image search feature of Google to search for black and white appropriately steampunk images.

Electrolytic Machining of Brass, a Clockwork Trilobite

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I have been having great success etching brass plate with a solution of copper sulfate and an electrical current.  The depth, quality, and speed of the etchings have been quite controllable and it seemed to me that I might be able to etch completely through a piece of brass.  This capability

Electrolytic Etching of Brass

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  Update: I'm often asked about the thickness, type, and source of brass I used for these journals.  I am very lucky to have a local place, Metal Source, were I buy most of my supplies.  I used 22 ga. (.025") brass and any alloy will do.  In a

A Clockwork Guitar, the Steampunk Stratocaster

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I have a Fender US Highway One series Stratocaster, which is a half decent guitar, but looks just like a million other Strats.  I had been planning to replace the pick guard with a black mother of pearl guard but my experiments in electrolytic etching made me think I'd

Halloween Decorations 2006

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Well, we haven't done a Steampunk Hallowe'en yet – maybe next year.  This year's the theme is "Pirates" of course.  It's a big year for Pirates. This is Geoffrey, he's a version of the Phantasmechanics Flying Crank Ghost .  Click to view the movie. There's a bit more tweaking to

Kerosene Lamp and Lantern Workshop

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Making and Repairing Kerosene Lamps: Wall Sconce Table Lamp Mae West Lamp Angle Lamp Repair Putting an electrified Angle Lamp back "in oil" Swing-arm Lamp     When I was about 14 I purchased a brass boatman's lantern at a narrow boat chandlery in Nantwich England while on a

Angle Lamp Repair

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The Angle Company of New York manufactured these unique lamps from the early 1890's until 1929. In my opinion the Angle Lamp is the pinnacle of kerosene wick lamp design. This is a two burner version. They also commonly came in 3, 4 and (much rarer) 6 and 8

Putting an Angle Lamp Back in Oil

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One of the tragic realities of Angle Lamps is that many have been electrified in a crude and destructive manner. Below is such a lamp. I bought this lamp on eBay thinking that it was solid brass. I intended to move the burners from a tin plate Angle Lamp