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Way Repairs To A Large Mill

Discussion in 'MACHINE RESTORATION & WAY SCRAPING' started by Str8jacket, Jun 14, 2016.

  1. Str8jacket

    Str8jacket H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I am currently in the throws of a complete gear box / knee rebuild of my universal. I have had to completely remove the bed and cross saddle and the pivot saddle, if thats the correct terminology. I never wanted to strip it but in its previous life it has had some not so good repairs and in all honesty im lucky it didnt launch the entire gear box out the side. So after repairing some shafts and replacing the bearings im going to put this giant rubix cube back together.
    But in the process of stripping it i have found some damage to the ways from blocked oil holes and it has picked up and gouged the bed. I have a not so precision straight edge and it looks good, i am waiting on 2 new proper precision straight edges to arrive to check thoroughly. I have also ordered a 400mm x 400mm cast iron surface plate. My question is what is the best way to repair the gouges and remove any high spots with out affecting the accuracy of the mill? I have no scraping experience and tbo i have no immediate desire to start, i want to use the mill not work on it. If the ways arent worn badly other than the gouge marks, any suggestions on a repair?

    Thanks Str8
     
  2. Bob Korves

    Bob Korves H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    You are not going to learn how to repair and recondition a milling machine from a couple paragraphs on this forum. It really takes an apprenticeship and lots of practice under the supervision of experts. The book Machine Tool Reconditioning, by Connelly, is a great place to start. It is considered to be the bible on scraping. The book sells for about $100, but is a free download on this forum:
    http://www.hobby-machinist.com/threads/connelly-on-machine-tool-reconditioning.41802/

    I don't know what type of straightedges and CI surface plate you have coming, but to be usable for spotting the ways and other surfaces of your mill they need to be the correct type, and will need to be scraped in to a very high tolerance, not something you will be able to do on your first or tenth scraping job.

    In my opinion, the first rule of working on old machines is "First cause no harm." A poor approach from misunderstanding the job and not having the skills and tools to do it correctly will quite possibly make the machine scrap metal for all practical purposes. Don't be in a big hurry, and educate yourself well before you start.

    Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to be a downer here, and I would really love to see your machine put back to it's former glory, but please first make sure you know what you are getting yourself into before attacking the machine with a scraper and straightedge...
     
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  3. 4gsr

    4gsr Global Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Can you post some pictures of the damaged areas for a start?

    My immediate response is to get you a oilstone, like a 2 x 6 size one, and some mineral spirits. Get you a shallow pan to pour some mineral spirits into and submerge the oil stone. Take this oil stone and start honing the damaged areas to remove any high spots. You will find out quickly how worn the ways are. Don't get aggressive, just enough to remove high spots. Take your time and pay attention how the honing stone reacts. Keep the stone saturated with mineral spirits. If it's a smooth action once the high spots are removed, you got it done. And probably don't have much wear. If the action continues to be rough and does not smooth out over a short period of time of honing, might as well stop. You have to decide if you want to recondition the ways at this point or just go back together and leave it as is.

    Straight edges will help, if they are of the "camel back" type. If it's just a precision ground type, its not going to help you in re-scraping your ways. About all they will help with is determining how much wear you have by using feeler gages. Get you a assortment of feelers from .001" all the way up to around .015" in thickness. My popular one is a .001" thick. If you cannot work it under the straight edge, I call it good. If it goes in certain areas, then start increasing the feeler thickness until you get one that will not go. The one before the last one tried will be the amount of wear you have. Then from that you can determine the method of repairing the ways. Map out the locations of the most wear, this will determine a approach to take to repair. Report back to us and we'll try to help you out.
     
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  4. Str8jacket

    Str8jacket H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Thanks for the suggestions.
    Bob, i did scraping 20 odd years ago on a 2in x 1in block as an apprentice, i have no intention of going any where near this thing with a scraper! It would be 3 times the size of a bridgeport.
    I bought the straght edges mainly to assess whether or not the mill was stuffed or not. As it happens they arrived yesterday and i had a very quick look with a light behind and it doesnt look terrible, a very small strip just visible on one or 2 sections, i will check properly with feeler guages asap. I did gently stone the high spots on one section as you suggested 4gsr already but got scared!
    Im not looking to bring this back to any former glory, i dont it had any! Its not a collector item its a work horse, any money spent from here on will be lost. So im minimizing my total outlay.
     
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  5. Bob Korves

    Bob Korves H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    OK, good luck with it! A big universal mill can do a lot of heavy work and make a mountain of chips. A year ago I tried to sell an old (1920's-1930's?) K&T 2B for a friend, no takers at any price. It also had a large Gorton vertical head that was adapted to the overarms and a bunch of B&S taper tooling, guessing #12 for the K&T and #10 for the Gorton head.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2016
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  6. Str8jacket

    Str8jacket H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Well I've have fully stripped the knee and table and have started to check with a straight edge and feeler guages.
    The Z dove tail ways look rough but when checked I couldn't get my .002in feeler in anywhere.
    20160624_173924.jpg 20160624_173932.jpg

    Not sure on the best way to clean the rusty mungey bits up?
     
  7. Str8jacket

    Str8jacket H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    The cross slide has some scoured marks but can't fit my feeler guages in anywhere. I don't have one smaller than 2 thou though. I have started to touch up the rough bits with a soft stone
    20160624_173956.jpg 20160624_174030.jpg
     
  8. Str8jacket

    Str8jacket H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    The table slide is the worst. I think it would have .003in of wear on the front right edge. You can see it where the score marks are.
    20160624_174040.jpg 20160624_174045.jpg
    Don't think there is much to be done about it but clean the rough stuff. Can't afford a shop to repair it..
     
  9. FOMOGO

    FOMOGO United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    You may find that by the time you get everything well cleaned, touched up, and adjusted that you will be fine. I've been keeping an eye out for something that size for resurfacing engine blocks. Cheers, Mike
     
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  10. Bob Korves

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    For a big old machine, that does not look too bad at all!
     
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  11. 4gsr

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    I've seen much worse over the years. I think you have a keeper there. The mill has very wide slides/bearings surfaces that have probably kept the wear to a minimum. A lot of water base coolant has taken its toll on the mill. As in any typical rebuild/reconditioning lots of crud and the typical abuse from no maintenance. If you had time to go over the slide bearing surfaces by "fuzzing" the surfaces, in other words, take a scraper and create a "X" pattern over the entire length of the bearing surfaces. This would create high and low places about 2 to 4 tenths deep. This would help in lubrication. Also, if you know how to "flake" or "Spot" the surfaces with those scallop looking figures, that would help too.

    Your table is a good design. It is like the old Gorton mill design where the table is almost fully supported by the saddle. If all you can get is a 3 thousandth feeler in, I wouldn't worry about it. It would be a easy scrape job to recondition, but once cleaned up and honed, probably would be less. Unless you are needing to hold a tenth or two, I wouldn't worry about it.

    But at minimum, hone all of the surfaces as you can with a oil stone and mineral spirits and call it good for now, as I have said earlier, and looks like you are doing. Clean up and flush all of the oil lines and get them pumping fresh oil before going back together. Don't be afraid to over oil with your favorite oil when you go back together. Try to replace all of the way wipers with new. McMaster Carr has way wiper materials available that you can buy and fit to your ways as needed. That where i've bought my last from. Your mill looks to be in good shape for one that has seen a lot of neglect in its past.

    And good luck! Ken
     
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  12. 4gsr

    4gsr Global Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    As for the rust, there is no easy way to remove it on large pieces as you have there. And there's lots of threads here on rust removal. The easiest I find is to get a couple of wire wheels, the one's with the rope looking bristles on them. They work about as good as anything else. Plus, they don't sling out those wires that you always get stuck with using the common ones. Ken

    BTY- There is a guy over in your neck of the woods that does a little bit of rebuilding and scraping. He has equipment to go in and re grind the ways if you had to. I don't know him personally, I know of him because he hangs out on another forum out. Have no clue his location in respect of yours over there. As far as I know he may be totally on opposite sides from each other. If you are interested in contacting him send me a personal message and I'll try to get contact information for you.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2016
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  13. John Hasler

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    I'd soak them in phosphoric acid or Evaporust. You can make a tank with boards and plasitc sheet. Alternatives are plastic wading pools, tubs for mixing concrete, and plastic stock tanks from the farm store. Gelled phosphoric acid ("naval jelly" or "rust reformer") is a possibilty for stuff that can't be tanked.
     
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  14. Tony Wells

    Tony Wells United States Vice President Staff Member Administrator

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    That's something I need to do with my Zayer 3. I think the ways are all smooth, but the gearbox sounds a little rough and the rapid clutch is shot. One day I'll have time to tear it down. Meanwhile, I'll keep pushing it along when I need the size. Not often, but when I need it, it still gets the job done.
     
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  15. chips&more

    chips&more United States Active User Active Member

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    Using an oil stone or similar is one way to get the high spots/nicks all smooth. I would rather burnish the area in question. I have through the years collected large pieces of flat metal just for this kind of thing. When needed, I apply a little oil and run the chunk of metal over the area and any high spots get leveled and wind up as little shiners. This method does not remove any metal like stoning would…Dave

    Also, if the rusty part is too big. I soak paper towels in Evaporust and then lay the towels over the rust and wrap it up in Saran wrap or something and keep it out of the sun.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2016
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  16. Str8jacket

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    I have had a chat to one very knowledgeable bloke about some stuff but not in relation to this job. I did find another person from the "other" forum who is based "close" to me. He's 4 hours away but hopefully he replies as he has scraping experience and restos too.

    I will try the techniques everyone has suggested to see what I can make work with the least amount of accuracy damage. Thank you everyone it is greatly appreciated.
     
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  17. Andre

    Andre Active User Active Member

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    When I got my mill, I could hardly move the table in the X axis, and milling was just a mess. When I removed the table, I found the table was sliding on a 1/8" thick slab of hardened and dried grease! Your ways look pretty good, maybe you can fill in the gouge marks with Moglice?
     
  18. zipfactor

    zipfactor United States Swarf Registered Member

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    You could also try Devcon plastic steel to fill gouges. It will be significantly less expensive.
     
  19. Str8jacket

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    I thought of using this type of repair but was concerned if the filler didn't adhere properly it may come loose and ball up and cause more issues. I have used Belzona metal repair before but it is so hard I worried it may damage the opposing surface
    I spent hours with a wood chisel in the end to clean the built up grime of the column ways, can still see the fish scale pattern on most areas now. Very happy. All other spots I hit with kero and a stone and come up pretty good. The worst bit is on the table right hand side.
    I'm up to a grand in new bearings, picked up 4 brand new Gorton way slides for 20 dollars each (which with the aussie dollar conversion equalled 2.3million!)
    I have 3 shafts to repair and fit with new needle rollers with inner race assemblies. I spent 12 hours just cleaning the knee gear box housing. Not a fun job at all. Have just started re-assembling the speed change gears for the feed. Made a small error pulling one shaft out not paying attention and the clock mechanism fell out of sync :eek: there are some serious amounts of combinations they can go. Hopefully I got it back in the right way cause I will have to completely disassemble the box to fix it. Still a few weeks away with work and kid commitments.
     
  20. John Hasler

    John Hasler United States Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I wouldn't try to fill gouges in the ways at all. You're only losing a tiny fraction of the bearing area. Think of them as oil pockets.
     
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  21. Str8jacket

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    Yep that's what I was thinking:) stop over thinking it!
     
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