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8520 - New to me, a few thoughts/questions

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jung4g

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#1
I've posted a touch about this in the Tool Junkies area, but figured it deserves it's own thread as well.

To preface this, I know more than the normal citizen about machining, but I've never run a lathe/mill before. I've been a mechanic and welder on my own projects for 15+ years, and I'm mechanically minded, but I've got more to learn than I know.

I recently inherited a full shop worth of stuff that was my uncle's. Included in that was a 12x37 Enco Lathe and a Clausing (Atlas) 8520 Mill.

I just moved them home over the weekend and got them into position, or at least close to last night.

Here she is as I found her at my uncle's (now my aunt's) shop:
IMG_1902.jpg

I pulled the top assembly off and covered the bed with painters's tape for the move:
IMG_2295.jpg

And got it into position last night:
IMG_2318.jpg

The garage is a work in progress, but I've got 3 kids, ages 5 and under including a 3 month old, so if I get one or two studs worth of insulation up each night, I'm doing pretty good. By the end of winter, it'll be insulated, drywalled, taped, and painted. That's easy compared to the electrical and plumbing fun I've had in there getting gas/water/air, and 45 more outlets added.

Ok so first, a list of the accessories I got for it (just the ones more tied to the mill):
Palmgren ~8" Rotary Table
Nice set of Clamps
Simple Collet Set
Several chucks, including a nice Albrecht
100s of Endmills, literally I kept 60 brand new 1/2" Double Ended, 4 flute endmills of a box of 100+ (I left the ones with chips or wear)
100s of Reamers
A box of taps/dies
A couple fly-cutters
Various work holders (v-blocks, angle plates, etc)

Vise
So something you'll see right away is that I don't have a vise. My cousin kept the vises from my uncle for his shop (more of a car garage) and to go with the drill press he took. That's fine as they we very old and of unknown make/model.
That said, from what I can see and have read online, a 4" vise would be a good size for the mill. I'm leaning towards a Kurt D40 for a few reasons:
Made in USA (actually in Minnesota about 30 miles from where I'm at)
Seems like their stuff is quality
The right size for the mill.
Is that a worthy purchase? Or should I get a cheaper version (like this 4" vise with swivel base from Grizzly) to start with and learn on?
I'd hate to ruin a Kurt as I'm learning how to run this machine or if I grab the wrong handle as I'm milling something, the grizzly seems like a sacrificial piece, but if it's going to be so bad that it makes learning a pain, I'll go straight for the Kurt.
I don't mind spending the money as I was going to buy machines anyway and ended up inheriting way more than I need to get started.

VFD
Is a VFD and new motor worthwhile for this? Maybe for down the road or if the motor doesn't seem very healthy. I saw someone on YouTube who put a DC motor with speed controller on an 8520 and the variable speed seams like it would be nice and you can still adjust range using various pulley positions.
If I do a VFD, what size motor? Is 1.5HP enough? The stock motor is a 3/4hp, but I know you don't get full power when using a VFD for a 3ph motor.

DRO
Again, I was looking at buying new machines to get into this hobby, specifically stuff from Precision Matthew's. One of the things I'm very interested in is a DRO to help increase accuracy, especially for someone like me who may start drilling a 6 hole bolt pattern and it could take 3 days to drill all 6 holes because of my limited free time. If I can rely on a computer to get me in the right spot again instead of spending half my time measuring things out and getting back in the mindset, I could see that being worthwhile. I'd prefer something that could connect to a computer or a tablet for better display and more options. Any recommendations for a modern DRO setup with scales that wouldn't take forever to install, that wouldn't hinder operation, and can be flexible with connectivity?

Foot Control
Anyone ever used a foot switch instead of a lever switch to control either the mill motor, or maybe a dual position foot switch for a power drive?
Something like this for the power drive I'm going to build: https://www.ebay.com/itm/-/370769670545,
I'd wire it where the left switch moves the table left, and the right switch moves it to the right.
Or the single foot version for the spindle motor.
As a TIG welder, I'm used to foot control where if you need to stop the operation, you lift your and everything stops.
Maybe bad ideas, but I like the idea of having both hands free and not needing to reach back to the column to turn it on/off.

Paint
I've been told by a few people to leave the mill and lathe as is, basically to enjoy the patina. But as I finish the garage, I'd like to make these look nice again, especially considering this 8520 has already been painted over before, so I wouldn't be preserving the original paint/finish anyway, and a late 80s Enco Chinese Lathe isn't anything worth preserving.
That said, I'm considering either just a dark grey or even satin or flat black to match my toolboxes. I've used rustoleum in the past, is that a horrible idea? These aren't going to be show pieces, but I also don't want my wife to moan every time she walks into the garage.



Anything else I should look at as "must have" for this mill or any other advise and I get it cleaned up and ready to go? Types of oil/grease to use, things to watch for/check, stuff that breaks easily, etc?
 

Asm109

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#2
I can relate to your shop progress woes.
I built a workshop many years ago. Some would call it a 3 car garage (24ft by 31 ft)
I paid to have grading and footings dug, concrete poured and exterior stucco done. Everything else was me and a few friends on framing weekend.
I broke ground first weekend in September. On January 10, the stucco guy put the color coat on the day we went to the hospital for my eldest child to be born.
At that point I had a fully enclosed roof on stucco done, doors installed building. It did not have electricity, water or compressed air lines run. No insulation or dry wall.
Two YEARS later, the inside was complete and I moved the shop equipment in from our regular garage. Just in time for a second child :)
Today, one has graduated college the other is a junior and I finally have time to read machining forums and spend time in the workshop.
 

T Bredehoft

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#3
I've worked in machines since 1970, only foot pedal I ever used was TIG welding. I don't think you'd find it advantageous in machine work.

I used a 4 inch vise on my Mill, my mill has a 7" by 27" table. It, the vise, hangs over the back by almost 2 inches, but some of that is taken up with the DRO reader, so I don't loose too much Y travel with the vise, but its something you have to consider. A 6 inch might be too much. Your mill doesn't appear to have power X feed, so you probably won't crash hard enough to do any harm to your vice. Get the best you can afford. It will be worth it in the long haul.
 

richl

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#4
Couple answers that may help...
Vise. A 4" should be OK, glacern makes a nice one for a bit less than Kurt, there are a number of really nice offshore models now too.

DRO: without a doubt the dro is one of the best things you can do for a mill. I map out projects with mine all the time. Poor man's cnc lol

No idea about a foot switch

Vfd, isn't your mill a 110/220 unit? 3/4 hp may sound small, but on mill that light it might be about right.

Have fun with her
 

jung4g

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#5
Vfd, isn't your mill a 110/220 unit? 3/4 hp may sound small, but on mill that light it might be about right.
The motor on my mill is a 110 3/4HP, not a dual voltage.
My thought is that a 220v 3phase 1.5HP motor through a VFD would be about half it's rated power, so back to the 3/4HP I have now, though I know it's not apples to apples because of how ratings have changed over the decades.
 

JimDawson

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#6
Using a VFD would give you full rated power. Using a static phase converter normally gives you about 2/3 rated power.
 

richl

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#7
I'd use her for awhile, get familiar how she works and cuts. You could always go to 1hp 220v single phase affordably... 3phase there are kits you can get on ebay, the motor and a vfd... the 110 to 220 upgrade is about 1/2 the amps.

Whatever you choose it's a nice machine.
 

T Bredehoft

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#8
The motor on my mill is a 110 3/4HP,
Don't concern your self with a larger motor until you've determined that the one you have is inadequate. If you're looking for variable speed control, there are units available for whatever motor you have. Run it for a while, take some almost too heavy cuts. if it bogs down easily then think about a larger motor, or consider being less aggressive.
 

markba633csi

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#9
Shars has some economical good vises too. Perhaps get a beater vise like that first and a Kurt or Glacern later to go with it. Personally I like swivel vises but some folks get along fine without the swivel feature.
Congrats on the goodies you got-
Mark S.
ps don't bother changing the motor, it should be fine.
 

jung4g

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I'm tempted to grab a Kurt D40 they have on their Scratch and Dent (some porosity in the castings), but it's hard to spend $470 on something so small before I've even plugged the machine in where a Shars one to start with is $110 shipped. Heck, wouldn't a cheap mill vise still be a decent vise for my drill press if I step up to a Kurt down the road?

For a motor, I'm not so much concern with the current motor's power as I'm thinking about how nice variable speed would be to have. Again, maybe down the road if the opinion is not "this is the best upgrade ever".

A DRO seems to be a higher priority on the list.
 

Dave Paine

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#11
I have a Shars 5in vise I purchased back in February. It is good for my hobby needs. I did not get the swivel base.

A benefit of a VFD is if your pulley options do not provide the RPM you want to use. My original pulleys went from something like 450 to 950 rpm, nothing in between.

I love having a DRO on my milling machine and lathe. It is a lot easier than having to read the dials and set stops.
 

richl

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#12
https://www.glacern.com/gsv_440
A little less money, but as Mark mentioned the shars is even cheaper. You might even want to consider one of the screwless vises

My mill is stepped pulley also, it does have a nice range of decently Spaced pulleys 130-3470 rpms. For me, I find the range good enough, I'd like variable but I don't have to have it. The dro was a huge step forward, my x and y screws do have a little slip. With igaging dros (much cheaper when I bought them) i can get very close now and repeatable...

Have fun
 

jung4g

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Is there a way to date the mill based on the serial number? Mine is # 003991
Screen Shot 2017-11-02 at 8.52.54 AM.png
 

JPigg55

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#15
I went with the Glacern 5" vise for my 8520. A lot depends on the size of material you think you'll be machining.
Mine came with an original Clausing accessory vice that I believe is a 4" vise. It turned out to be too small for a lot of projects.
DRO ???, here again depends on a lot of factors and price range you want to stay in.
Do you want to use a cheap, capacitive type scale DRO system, glass scales, magnetic ???
Do you want a dedicated manufacturer DRO display or an App based display like Touch DRO like on Yuriy's Toys ??? http://www.yuriystoys.com/
I decided on using Touch DRO. PM me if you are wondering why.
There's a ton of info on this site for your mill, just look and search around.

As far as VFD, my opinion is it's not worth it unless you do a custom change-out of the step pulley system.
Even with VFD, you'd need to perform belt changes on the pulleys to get full range speed control.
 

BGHansen

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#16
I bought an Enco 4" swivel vise for my Jet JVM-830 (similar to your 8520) 30+ years ago. Have never once used the swivel, and the 4" seemed to be a good size. I recently went to a Kurt 6" non-swivel on the mill which looks huge. It doesn't really buy me anything over the 4" other than rigidity as I lose some Y-axis travel because the fixed jaw is so deep and runs into the column.

Probably a 4" or 5" from Shars without a swivel will suit you well. Like you mentioned, if you upgrade some day it'd be a super vise for your drill press. If for some reason you have a custom job that needs a slot milled at a 45 deg. angle bolt the vise to a heavy plate, angle the plate appropriately and tie the plate to the table with a clamping kit.

Bruce
 

jung4g

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#17
Thanks, Bruce. appreciate you sharing your experience, especially with the 6" Kurt. There is one on craigslist nearby for a decent deal with a swivel table, but it really just seems to big.

The note on the clamping kit has me thinking, I have a decent set of clamps that I could probably get a lot of jobs done with alone, just more work that a vise, and may require multiple setups for some jobs where I'd have to mill, move the clamps, re-index, and then mill again. I'll know soon enough, I'm picking up the last parts (mainly new belts) that I need for this over lunch, hopefully I'll be able to fire it up tomorrow.
 

jung4g

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#18
Quick update. Clausing took their time to answer, a full 26 minutes, to tell me this mill is from 1962.
 

jung4g

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#19
Scored a Kurt D40, 4" vise on eBay yesterday for $240 shipped. It's used, but for a 55 year old mill, it'll look more at home anyway. Hopefully it doesn't need too much attention.
 
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