I decided a ¼” pivot pin would work just fine (since I have ¼” drill rod) so I could start working on the lever cap. I wasn’t getting anywhere sketching out a cap design on paper so I did it on the blank. Having all the parts in place and a physical object seems to help quite a bit. I seem to be too impatient for 3D CAD.
I like circles, which makes cutout easy. Here are three cuts with two hole saws (7/8″ & 1½”). Two drawbacks to hole saws: they deflect a lot (the body flexes as the teeth bite and pulls the cutter off center) and the surface finish is grim. So, even though big cutouts were started on the same center line, one cut deflected up, the other down (effectively, the cutter rotation reversed between cuts). I should use a smaller saw and a boring head to do the final cut but that takes too long and these are somewhat exploratory cuts anyway (ie I’m not really sure of the final shape).
I wanted to do a cut out for this cap, just ’cause; the four corners were drilled with a 1/8″ drill and I mowed out most of the hole with an small endmill. Then lots and lots of tedious filing with lots of different files (that is a box of files and a box of file handles). I used a knife file (named for the shape, not the use) to create the sharp corners. I’d suggest gloves, my hands get pretty chewed up.
Cleaning up the curve on the bottom of the cap is an extra special pain in the butt because cut was so rough. I should have cleaned it up with a boring head but I’m using sandpaper on a dowel. Why? You really can’t see it but it just bugs me.