Evolution of an axle jig, the first one
I've never been that great at preserving my own history. Whether that was stuff I created in grade school, or college, or even well after...I've just never had a good system for archiving stuff.
Sure, I have a decent amount of toys & games that survived my childhood, but much of my personal history is stashed in shoebox's worth of photos and some of the schoolwork my mom decided to save. It's not a lot. I guess I never really thought much about preserving my own past.
That's changed a bit since I've become a parent, and preserving my kid's history has become a challenge in its own right, but every now and then a gem will surface that makes me smile.
The new Forum Grab Bag has been a joy at digging up old articles and remembering what was happening as I wrote about my own journey into diecast racing. And then there's stuff like this:
See that little red axle jig in the middle? That was the very first axle jig I made.
This photo was posted on the MidOhio Diecast Racing group on Facebook by my old cohort Bruno Tabacchi. The jig was a gift for Bruno that he managed to hang on to.
Bruno used to work at a local autobody shop here in Columbus that organized some diecast racing events. Back in late 2019, he found Redline Derby, realized I was local, and invited me to one of the shop's race nights. Up to that point, RLD had been an online-only type of thing so this was my first chance to make Redline Derby more live and local. I was pretty excited to see where it could all lead.
A few months prior to that, I got a 3D printer for my birthday which led to the design and creation of the axle alignment jig. Being new to printing, I just cobbled together some basic shapes with some free software and the first axle jig was born. It was a sad, over-designed little jig but it worked-ish.
To be honest, it was pretty much a prototype but I was so proud to have a) made something with a 3D printer, and b) made something that was fun and functional for people that I just had to show it off and share.
Shortly after that were the RLD Triplemania races and local charity race event with Bruno's crew, all of which turned out great...and then the world turned upside down in Spring 2020. I got a taste of organizing some live racing just in time for it to grind to a halt. It was a bummer but all that time stuck at home gave me the opportunity to evolve the jig into something better that I could make available to the larger racing community.
That all feels like such a long time ago but it's only been 3 years. I remember giving Bruno that jig and all the events that came after but I also just assumed the jig found its way into a drawer and was forgotten. I'm happy to see that baby jig has survived. It's a piece of Redline Derby Racing history.
And for what it's worth, you can own your own part of that history with your very own Axle Alignment Jig. It helps keep your axles parallel when you're making custom racers. You can purchase a jig through our exclusive partner Slanman Customs. All jig purchases support Redline Derby Racing and help keep the lights on around here.
i think the story was cool, too
over the years, I have built tools for auto/fab, and run across'em in the shop,
and the whole story of buildin' it comes right back, makes me smile, think of friends,
taking time to appreciating the small things in life amongst the constant chaos
Cool to see the jig is back! I still have mine from way back when they were originally for sale. Newer model does look a lot nicer!