Corrugated zinc for washboard

I have to kinda agree with James. I"ve been following this thread out of curiosity and the first thing I noticed was that not one of the answers supplied (on MY server) had anything to do with the original question.
You could have stopped right here. Concise, to the point, answered the question.
But you continued;
Worded in such a way as to denigrate and disparage James' efforts, and totally OT. And to make it even worse, you went on to say;
I'm glad you and Susan had a good time. But James didnt ask about steel drum bands, brake drums, or tuning brake drums, and he certainly didnt evidence any interest in what you do for recreation. However, since a brake drum played a large part in your enjoyment of your Caribbean cruise, surely you can see how a washboard would be important to James.
I saw nothing in any of the responses to merit any degree of appreciation on James' part. I include this post in that catch all since it has nothing to do with his question.
To be sure, there are a lot of fine people here and their posts command respect. Unfortunately I saw none of that in this thread. One step on the way to commanding that respect is to be gentle with those who dont have your same level of knowledge.
One reason for asking questions of the NG is to remove or reduce the luck element by relying on the expertise and experience of others, and avoid having to reinvent the wheel.
You can chalk this up to my curmudgeon-ness or whatever, but I'm just tired of seeing serious questions answered with stupid pissy off topic answers that provide no enlightenment at all, and make me feel, while reading news groups, that I'm sitting in an out-of-control 3rd grade classroom while the teacher is out.
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James wrote: There is not a soul in the world can tell me anything about playing washboards are where to buy them that I don't already know. Thanks for the advice but that wasn't my question. If anybody knows where I can buy sheets of zinc,I would still like know. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^ I do not feel the least be apologetic about what I posted. It was an attempt to be helpful, while, at the same time, I thought I was offering interesting information to the rest of the group. Many of these threads take on a life of their own, and go well beyond, and far afield from, the original question.
Several people have told you of possible sources for sheet zinc, as well as offering you what I consider useful information about the durability and suitability of zinc for this purpose. A few others have described equipment and techniques which may solve your problem. These are people who know metals and machines.
I think your testiness is out of order.
Reply to
Leo Lichtman
Yep, I sure can, but I also don't recall anyone being critical of the man playing the brake drum, who appeared to be doing his level best to entertain those of us that chose to go ashore on the tenders from the ship. There was no dock available on Granada, not at that time. Perhaps my point was a little vague, but they (the band) were doing the best they could with what they had at hand. Seems to me that those that had responded to this thread were doing likewise. James is so uninformed that he can't tell the difference between zinc and steel. These people, in good faith, sensed that and were offering up suggestions that might help him avoid spending the $15,000, more or less, it would cost for a die that most likely would not solve his particular problem, which was my point. He had already established the ground rules, that we need not be polite, so I was playing his game, his way. He doesn't like it, perhaps you could change his approach.
Then he should post his questions to a manufacturer of goods so he doesn't get the hodge podge of responses so characteristic of this group. Being rude because his specific question wasn't answered is hardly the way to encourage others to try. Why would anyone with a brain look for diamonds in a coal mine? Isn't that what anyone is doing in asking a group of people, with wide and varied knowledge, a question? Shouldn't one expect to get answers that have little to no value, along with perhaps one gem that is the perfect answer to the question? The way I see it, many of these guys are here for the social end of things, just talking to their "friends". Often the subject is completely lost, but they enjoy conversation with one another. Many times the answer to a specific question slowly evolves, thanks to the conversation.
I'm to assume, then, that those asking the questions, expecting others to spend their valuable time with no hopes of gain, to accept the attitude James displayed when he didn't get the exact answer he wished to hear? I've spent the vast majority of my life in manufacturing and I was not privy to the knowledge of where zinc could be purchased in sheet form. Perhaps someone might have the knowledge of where it could be readily obtained, but judging by the responses, it gets down to a search. He's not capable of that? Like I said, perhaps the responses he received were not what he hoped for, perhaps even totally off topic, but he could, at least, show some respect for the fact that folks were trying, and cared enough about their fellow man to do what they could. This entire thing draws a close parallel to something that just happened, during the dark hours yesterday, here in Western Washington. An elderly gentleman was driving the wrong way on the freeway and hit the barrier. He was on a long overpass. Three people, traveling in the opposite lanes, saw the accident happen and immediately stopped their cars and went to lend assistance. In jumping over the barrier to what they thought was the other side, they didn't realize they were on two bridges separated by a gap, so as a result all three of them fell some 30'. Two of them, women, were badly injured, one with a broken back. Each was "fortunate" to fall into wild berry vines, breaking their fall. Sadly, the same could not be said for the third person, a man on his way home to celebrate the Christmas Holiday with his family. He gave his all trying to be helpful, his reward was death. No good deed goes unpunished.
I don't see how jumping off the overpass was going to help the elderly gentleman, for it had nothing to do with saving him, but the effort put forth by these people, albeit very poorly directed, reminds me a great deal of those that offered their advice for James, which you seem to find off topic. Everyone, at the moment, was doing the best they could. For that, they do not deserve caustic remarks handed to them.
And being rude to those that are trying certainly will require considerable luck if there is any hope of a solution.
I've posted advice here long enough to know that the best advice tendered is going to have, at the least, one detractor, someone who chooses to argue, if for no other reason, the advice does not agree with the reader's personal opinion, be it based on knowledge or guesstimate. How do you sort out the good from the bad when you already don't know?
Oftentimes those asking questions are not really looking for answers, they are posting to boast, hoping to find others that agree with their great creations, to get a pat on the head for their cleverness. For someone to post a better method is not hoped for. They have already reinvented the wheel and seem to like it with nine sides.
LP (if that's who you are), is it mandatory that you read this group? If not, why do you persist? It has been my experience that one rarely gets answers that stay on topic, but there is something to gain even then. I'm overly impressed with the level of intelligence displayed by the vast majority of these folks and learn something from them, even when they have drifted way off topic.
Harold, the guy that signs his name.
Reply to
Harold & Susan Vordos
Let me make a couple of suggestions, based mostly on my review of the other posts, as well as my own knowledge of metal. I deliberately held off posting initially, which was good, since some of the suggestions made were better than my first thought.
1. The washboards are almost certainly made of zinc coated steel, not zinc. Zinc is too expensive and exotic, while zinc coated steel is a very common material. The zinc prevents the steel from rusting, even if there is a pinhole in the zinc coating. A magnet can prove that they are steel. You should probably pick up an inexpensive ($20) Micrometer to measure the thickness of the metal.
2. Given that you want to experiment with various size ripples, I think that the best suggestion would be to use a press brake with a very simple die, and put in the ripples one ripple at a time. I could imagine an upper die which was a round rod, and a lower die made of two round rods, with a press brake you could make the ripple as deep or shallow as you choose, and by doing one ripple at a time, you could get any spacing that you want.
What you need is a sheet metal shop willing to work with you. Realistically, you should probably try to strike a time and material deal, and have them do it while you watch. Shop time could cost perhaps $100 an hour. Call around and find a sheet metal shop with a press brake willing to take on small jobs. If you walk in with a washboard, they may look at you funny, but they will know what you want. A picture is worth a thousand words, but a physical model is worth 10,000 words.
Alternately, you could buy a hydraulic press for a few hundred dollars, and get a local blacksmith or machine shop to make you a simple die. If the first die does not quite do what you want, the second die will probably do the trick, you could bring in the output of the press brake, explain what you need to be different, they could probably make a simple die change to get the desired result. Metal suppliers could cut you rectangular pieces of metal to play with, they are generally happy to shear stock in addition to sell it, for a nominal fee. Then you could experiment in your garage or basement until you were happy with the result.
I assume that you could find someone to do the woodworking, most musical instruments are made of wood, so you should have connections there.
Once you settle on a design, other types of dies would be better for production. At that point, you would be best off dealing with shops with experience with sheet metal forming and manufacturing.
You did not say where you were located, maybe someone could make a specific suggestion if they knew where you were. You need somebody who knows something about metal to work with you.
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James wrote:
Reply to
Richard Ferguson
tired of seeing serious questions answered with stupid pissy off topic
Usenet _is_ rough. Along with getting advice that you find helpful, you have to put up with criticism, off-topic posts, personal anecdotes & sometimes, information that is flat-out incorrect. Oh, the humanity!
If the OP found Harold's post unhelpful, maybe Harold will refund his fee.
R, Tom Q.
Reply to
Tom Quackenbush
You jokers may know a lot about machining, but you know squat about wasboards. The first, and most common wasboard was zinc, followed in later years by glass and Galvanized steel. see:
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Looking at Dave Holt's washboard above, it is DEINITELY Zinc, and not galvanized steel (see how the "ribs" have moved???)
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Don't know where you live, but Zinc was in very common use in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Canner rings (jar lids) were solid zinc. They were made and used by the thousands in that time period. Zinc washboards were used by the hundreds - and yes, they did wear out. Concrete laundry tubs were sold with zink washboards cast right into them. Galvanized steel would have disintegrated in a very short time, while the zinc lasted for decades. For the "dainties" zinc and glass were used. Galvanized boards may have been used by the poor - but fine"dainties" were at serious risk of damage with galvanized boards. Laundry tubs were galvanized, but they did not get the wear a washboard got.
Not 100% sure, but I THINK some of the zinc boards were cast.
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