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My ACWEECO (AVO) Douglas No. 6 Coil Winder

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  • My ACWEECO (AVO) Douglas No. 6 Coil Winder

    Hey folks,

    I joined a while back and have read a lot of the content on the forum. Iíve especially enjoyed the posts about old winding gear, so thought Iíd introduce myself by posting my old winder:

    Click image for larger version

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    Obviously not set up here.

    It's a Made in London ACWEECo No. 6 automatic coil winder. I guesstimate its date of manufacture to a 17-year period between 1936 - 1953.

    This was preceded by two earlier models; the No. 1 (hand powered) and No. 3 (motorised). The model numbers seem to correspond to the year in the 1930s when it was introduced, so No. 3 = 1933, No. 6 = 1936.

    My No. 6 canít be any older than 1953 as there was a slight design change, while the company name was changed from ACWEECo to AVO after the famous multimeters invented by the companyís founder.

  • #2
    The auto traverse works via a gear box on the right hand side of the winder. Different wire gauges require different combinations of change gears to ensure correct wire spacing - these change gears are now impossible to find!

    An old manual I found online has tables explaining which gear combinations are needed for different wire gauges. By studying the gears that came with the winder, I was able to write some OpenSCAD code that can reconstruct any of these gears based on their number of teeth. Using this code, I've had some new change gears 3D-printed in a strong nylon-type material. Time will tell how long these replacement gears will last, but now I've figured the code out I can always re-print in different materials if needed.


    • #3
      Lovely little winder there Timmy!, congratulations on finding it. I would mention that no company in their right mind would want to spend their time hobbing their own gears, especially if they need lots of different tooth counts and they could buy what they needed off the shelf. Boston Gear has a pretty formidable catalogue. There are probably other sources in the UK as well but I'm impressed that your printed gears are working out so well. Not a lot of torque probably and they will undoubtedly "wear-in" over time and a little backlash shouldn't affect operations in the slightest.


      • #4
        That is a very nice winder. I agree with David about the gears; have you checked with model engineering sources? Perhaps something for a small lathe such as Myford could be used or adapted. Years ago I was amazed at the resources available in England for small-scale machining, although I wouldn't be surprised if that hobby was dwindling as the older generations disappear.

        Good luck.


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