"Dusting The Screws"

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I was affixing a brass plaque the other day and, as is my practice when installing hardware with slotted screws, I "dusted" them.
To me, this means that the slots are vertical and that they all match.
I've used this term for years and I've been asked where the term came from.
My poor memory seems to recall that it is a term from motorheads who trick out old cars for shows but I'm not at all clear on that.
Has anyone else heard this term?
Does anyone else bother to do this?
Is this a sign of OCD?
Regards,
Tom Watson http://home.comcast.net/~tjwatson1 /
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Tom Watson wrote:

Never heard that term for it but have always taken the trouble to "just neaten-up things a little" as my grandad usta' call it...
The correct orientation is horizontal, however, not vertical... :)
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They collect more dust in the horizontal position. Also, when outside, the vertical will allow for water to run off more easily. Now I'm all out of nits till I raise a few more.
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Robatoy wrote:

I was just pullin' Tom's chain a little for the heckuvit; in reality I don't have a fixed orientation, what I actually do w/ orientation depends on the piece and what appears to look best to my eye at the time. On affixing a plate such as that mentioned, particularly if the corners were cut off, placing them so they slots parallel the adjacent edge might be more attractive rather than either h-al or v-al...
The most important facet is simply the symmetry that echoes the care; in general the actual choice is less important.
Again, of course, $0.01, ymmv, etc., etc., ...
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And I was pulling yours....and I was trying to stave off the more anal membership here. All in all, orientate the slots so it compliments the shape of the object. An oval would create a different zen than a rhomboid. As the French say: . . . . . . ...well...whatever it is they say....
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On Thu, 9 Jul 2009 14:59:19 -0700 (PDT), Robatoy

Let me know how you make out with that.
Regards,
Tom Watson http://home.comcast.net/~tjwatson1 /
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On Thu, 09 Jul 2009 15:01:35 -0400, Tom Watson wrote:

No.
Always.

Probably. Although I put it down to doing a decent engineering apprenticeship, where I had it drummed into me that small details *mattered*.
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PCPaul wrote:

On the other hand, if the torque on the screws matters then this is absolutely the wrong thing to do. I know I've run into one instance (electrical switchplate) where lining up a screw with the others made it either too tight or too loose--I was worried about cracking the faceplate or having the screw unwind itself.
Chris
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You're supposed to use screws with thick heads and a temporary slot... after determining where the slot needs to be, by screwing them in to proper torque, create the final head and slot. At least that's the way we did it with hand filed wood screws when I worked in the gunsmith shop at Colonial Williamsburg. ;~)
John
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John Grossbohlin wrote:

Ah...that makes sense.
Chris
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Wow! A tip o' the hat to you.
I was snot-nosed punk working at a govt lab machine shop when our forman came out to the floor and told everyone to knock off. He wheeled out a old B&H 16mm projector and proceeded to show a two hour film on how a gun was made in colonial times as recreated at the Williamsburg gunshop. As a machinist, gun nut, and previous visitor to Williamsburg ('64), I can truly say that was one of the most fascinating and instructive films I've ever viewed.
I think the making of the screws, springs, and boring bit was the most interesting. It was almost unthinkable to us, who had walls of fasteners of every kind, that in those times, each screw was handmade. And who knew file technology was developed as early as the 16th century. Great film. I think it's still available as VHS.
Did you learn how to make the whole gun?
nb
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That movie is titled "The Gunsmith of Williamsburg" and features Wallace Gusler... It's on DVD now! As far as I know the rifle made in the movie still hangs in the gunsmith shop.
Files were old by the 16th century. ;~)
I learned a lot while there but wasn't there long enough to learn it all. Like any place else with a budget they have their bad times... They laid off about 30 people around the time I left.
John
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Sorry to hear you had to leave, John. I left my machine shop, one of my best memories, under similar circumstances, it being a govt thing and a prez admin change, so I know how that works.
I recall Williamsburg back in '64, before the electronic cash registers were installed. Great experience. It was "real" back then.
Thanks for the exact title name. I may jes buy a copy. It would be great to show to my firearm friendly friends.
nb
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It's pretty cheap..... http://www.williamsburgmarketplace.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductView?catalogId 119&storeId001&langId=-1&categoryId%873&parentCategoryId377&start=1&end&sortByatured
I like the cabinet maker movie too.
http://www.williamsburgmarketplace.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductView?catalogId 119&storeId001&langId=-1&categoryId%880&parentCategoryId377&start=1&end&sortByatured
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I didn't know that.

Nope.
Every single time

Most certainly. Of course, I'm pretty sure being a wooddorker is a sign of OCD as well.
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I think that some folks actually have screws that have doubly thick heads. They put them in and tighten them up, then they file them flush and re-cut the slot in the exact alignment that they desire. I'd worry about over or under-torquing them the other way maybe.
JP
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While I find your premise intriguing, I also find it mostly unbelievable. Who would do this? Where would they get these fasteners? How would they cut the new slot? What discipline would require it?
I used to spend hours working with fastener reps and never heard of such a thing. I've made specialized screws, but never this. I even know jewelers that have no need of such an item.
I'm not being dismissive, just very curious. We've heard one fellow mention gunsmithing. I guess I can see handmade custom guns that cost in the tens of thousands of dollars doing this. I've not seen this in Concours de Elegance or aircraft. Is being anal a craft? ;)
nb
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I visited the Colonial Williamsburg gunshop a few years back and they showed me a built-from-scratch Kentucky flintlock that they had just completed on commission of $20,000. Back when those flintlocks were new technology people felt strongly enough about personal firearms to write the Second Amendment to our U.S. Constitution.
David Merrill
wrote:

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For example, see this one (link may outdate when rifle is sold)and note the close-ups of the patch box and the barrel tang. http://www.trackofthewolf.com /(S(rzsmpnaza0for0nh1mb3a345))/categories/partDetail.aspx?catId&subId&styleId(0&partNumG-482 Or here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:DoubleRifleBreech.jpg Not every firearm is crafted to this level of quality: http://www.trackofthewolf.com /(S(rzsmpnaza0for0nh1mb3a345))/categories/partList.aspx?catID&subID&styleID(0 but screw slot alignment has been long considered as a key indicator of quality gunsmithing as have special, narrow slots that have the practical purpose of resisting attacks with wedge shaped hardware store screwdrivers. Conversely buggered-up screw slots and over-tightened screws are indicators of insensitivity, incompetence and neglect by previous owners of a used firearm.
Finally, you're not likely to see socket head cap screws or hex bolts on a fine sporting firearm (though maybe on some specialized military or competition rifle where performance trumps appearance).
David Merrill
wrote:

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Jay Pique wrote:

How did they get them out after filing them flush?
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dadiOH
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