Now any self-respecting workshop (Or, in my case, any shameful workshop) has a stash of Things That Will Come In Handy. I have one or two - or maybe four - plastic tubs of the assorted small "You Never Knows" of this variety, but Tobacco Tins of Things is the classic Old School method. I know this because I have several of those too. Tool chests are rich pickings for these, and as a couple of contents of tool chests have darkened these doors, the tobacco tins have stacked up. So I was fairly confident of finding something bead-like.
I hunted amongst the shirt collar stiffeners, the razor blades, the Blakeys, the uncut Yale keys, the Vacant/Occupied door bolt, and so forth, but no beads or bead-like objects. Okay then, how about a suitable nut of the "and bolt" variety? Not zinc plated, methinks, but something in stainless steel or, ooo, brass? Just as I was about to dig out my box o'brass bits, my eye fell on something in amongst the upholstery tacks and fibre washers.
Something with a hole in it that otherwise looked kinda like a straw boater. Or a train wheel.
If the Reader will cast his or her mind back to, um, last January (Really? Gosh, how time does insist on flying) and my acquisition of an older Millers Falls #2 hand drill. Missing the Little Rail Road Car Wheel that bears on the main gear wheel, wasn't it? Have I done anything about it yet? Have I heck. But would this fortunate find fit?
Well yeah, it does. Kinda. It's not the clever cam adjustment design of the original, and I think it's going to need some tweaking once I've tried it under load, but it's definitely a start and 100% better than nothing at all.
Maybe sometimes the tool gods do give us suckers an even break. Just once in a while, to keep us guessing.
Yes, you'll have noticed I found the box o'brass bits too - a couple of M4 nuts seemed just the ticket to fulfil my original quest. Next, the O-rings to go with them.