Saturday, April 30, 2016

Assembly and Setup of the Argonaut Kraken

Assembly and setup of the Argonaut Kraken

These posts are not meant to be a service/repair guide by any stretch.  I had a few requests to post assembly pictures so I thought while I had a little time before they arrive I'd show some of the process of putting them together.

This is what the cans look like when they arrive from the manufacturer

Pretty boring stuff. Looks kinda like a burrito waiting to go in the microwave.
First step is to punch in the 6 threaded inserts into the body side cans.  This is my least favorite and usually the most frustrating of the whole process.  The outer diameter of the insert and the hole in the can form an interference fit when they are punched in.  But when doing this the sharp edge of the insert often shaves off bits of the plastic and this gets caught in the threads and is tough to get out completely.  So to help minimize this I use short pieces of threaded rod in the inserts and then remove them after the inserts are punched down.
you can see all the HIGH TECH equipment used in the process....brass hammer, block of wood, and a special brass punch that Herman made for me. 

After all 6 inserts are punched in I remove the threaded rod sections and blow out all the holes with compressed air. Next using another specialty tool that Herman made for me I go back though one more time and chase all the threads again.  In 2014 on the first run I ruined many can halves during final assembly due to tiny pieces of plastic in the threads and a little too much torque which twisted the hex head in the can and ruined it.  I have worn the threads off of the tool in the picture below and it's rusty from the sweat from my hands from holding it so long.  I figure I've chased the threads in over a thousand inserts......Did I mention I HATE this part!
Next we move on to the exhaust side can.

I use a little alcohol based hand sanitizer on the exhaust valve for lubricant when I push it into place in the can. 
Dave make the can labels for me and it's a very painstaking process so I don't have extras around to spare. Forming them is not a time to be Mr Bumblefingers!

First the label is placed upside down in a special die that Herman made for me.  Next the cap goes on it and it's pressed though the form using the amazing Argonaut multipurpose bench press....Another tool that Herman made for me.

The tabs on the label come out of the form in a C shape and when I go to attach them to the can I want the tabs at as close to a 90 degree angle as I can get.  So I place them on the edge of the press and give them a couple of strikes with a brass hammer where the label and the tab meet to get the angle I'm looking for. 
After that they get set aside and wait for a body to be matched up with. 

Next main body assembly!