Making rubber feet pt1



As we all know, over time, rubber feet become less rubbery and less foot-ish.  There are a variety of services offered by a ton of amazing people out there to restore your rubber parts, or to make new ones.  I, however, am not one of their patrons due to my foolhearty and somewhat unrealistic urge to do everything on a zero dollar budget.
So here is my $0 way to make new feet.  Poorly documented, yes, but this was more of a test run to see how it would work out.  I’ll document it better once I can do it better.  I don’t like documenting my failures.

I got this machine three years ago, and have used it every day since.  It needed a fair bit of work to get it going, and I’ve written about that in past pages.  Up until now, it has had these foam pads glued to the base to keep the frame from scratching up the desk.  A mistake I made with my first machine many years ago.  Recently, I decided it was time to make new feet.  I accomplished this with a few things I had around the house, tap water, old ink, expired corn starch, a tube of silicone caulk I dug out of the trash, and some scrap steel from an old microwave (also from the trash).
100% silicone has an interesting reaction with water, in that it solidified into a hard rubber relatively fast.  I mixed the ink with the water to form some sort of black dye, and globed a bunch of the caulk in along with it.  The caulk was old, hence why it was thrown out, and actually broke my caulk gun as I was extracting it.  Anyway, the two things were mixed until they were somewhat homogenous, or of one color, similar to the way I make my meals.  This unusable gloppy mixture got transferred to some corn starch and kneaded until it resembled putty, rather than glue.  It was then pressed into a shaped mould I had made from scrap metal, and left to set for about a half hour.  Repeat four times, and them trim them down with a razor blade, and cut the holes.

Below are before and after shots.

My burnt and abused workbench with ink mixture, caulk, and starch.
Make sure it’s 100% silicon.

Feet before.  Just craft foam.  It does work, but can’t be
screwed into the base.


New feet!

The screw holes are open to be screwed...wow that sounds bad, but you know what I mean. 
Speaking in strictly mechanical terms people.... 

Comments

  1. Nice idea, thanks! I’ll have to try that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hopefully you’re a better craftsman than I am!

      Delete

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