Sometimes the opportunity for a new piece of equipment can come from the most unexpected places, I have a friend who is a very skilled leather worker, and his workshop is full of all sorts of interesting bits of leather making kit. He has a Victorian era foot operated stamping press used to stamp out leather shapes, photo 1.
When he first got this press he needed a flat platen making for it, for which he obtained a couple of 150mm diameter by 25mm thick steel blanks, he asked me if I could machine one of them to make the platen, and for my trouble I could keep the spare blank, I took one look at the blank and realised that it would make a small faceplate to compliment the much larger faceplate that came with my lathe.
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