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Brown & Sharpe 2B surface grinder - questions

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Technical Ted

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#1
This is the latest addition to my hobby shop. Serial # 11732 which I'm guessing might put it around 1936 or so? Anyways, it needs a lot of TLC, but I'm hoping it will make an adequate addition to my shop for the work I will be doing with it. The ways don't look like they are in too bad of shape especially for its' age. I haven't got much to lose since I think I hardly paid much more than scrap price for it and it cost me nothing to get it home (other than gas).

The guy I got it from said he bought it to fix up and use, but never found the time to work on it so he wanted it gone and have the room in his garage shop back. He said when he got it it had a 3-phase motor in the base that was bolted down, but was not connected physically to anything (no shafts, belts, etc). I'm speculating that this machine was originally a base motor version, but then was retrofitted with the direct drive spindle motor??? Does that make sense? He sold that motor for $30 scrap so I don't have that.

The spindle feels to me while spinning by hand like it has ball or roller bearings, not plain bearings. The disappointing thing so far is that the motor is only 440 volt 3-phase (1HP). It's looking like there are no VFDs that convert 220 V single phase to 440 V 3-phase available??? It has Acme transformers on it that were wired to bump up the 3-phase 220 volt input to 440 volt for the motor so I have them, but I don't think you can use those to step up the output of a VFD because nothing should be wired between the VFD's output and the motor. So, maybe I can replace the motor with a single phase one or buy a static phase converter so I can use the transformers? I'm looking for input from those of you who have run into this situation before and would love to hear what you might have successfully done.

I'll be tearing this thing down for a complete cleaning and going over before firing it up. I'll paint it, but only with a brush.

I also got a couple of 1/2" x 7" Norton wheels and a smaller manual magnetic chuck with it.

I found a manual on-line to download for free, but it's for a 1940's version and I don't think it covers this spindle. So if anyone has any suggestions and/or information to share I'm all ears!

Ted

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benmychree

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#2
It appears that the machine never had power traverse or automatic cross feed, it is strictly a manual machine, I have owned two of them, one with a original ball bearing spindle and one with the plain bearing spindle. If it is possible to separate the motor from the spindle, which I think is doubtful, but not being able to see how the spindle and motor are attached, who knows? A possibility would be to take it to a motor shop and see if the leads can be brought out from the windings for reconnection to low volts.
That spindle is not an original for that machine, it is a replacement.
 

Bob Korves

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#3
Ted, I have a B & S model 2L, that I bought from benmychree (John York.) John's information is in the post above. The 2L is the version with with power feeds. The 2B did not have power feeds, and was a manual machine. They were available with belt drive plain bearing spindles or with self contained motor/spindles from the factory, though that may have been different with older model 2 machines (I have found #2 grinders in a 1904 B & S catalog!) If yours had a motor in the base, then it likely originally had a plain bearing spindle, which was changed out for the Ex-cell-o spindle that is on there now. That is a modification to the machine. It is a retrofit of a spindle with a built in motor. That does not really make sense because the grinder has a 2B label and 2B was a manual machine from the factory. Since there are no power feeds, and the replacement motor/spindle is self contained, any and all of the original spindle drive components can be ignored and/or removed. There is nothing for them to do...

Look here for basic information: http://vintagemachinery.org/mfgIndex/detail.aspx?id=2185
Also click on each of the tabs below the manufacturer's name near the top of the page for lots more good stuff.
Under "publication reprints" you will find this manual:
http://vintagemachinery.org/pubs/detail.aspx?id=16323
and a lot more. That manual exactly covers my 1946 2L grinder, s/n 17047, and 2B grinders as well. Have fun and let me know if I can be of more assistance.
 
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Technical Ted

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#4
Thanks for the info guys. I've done a little research and am a little smarter about this unit now than I was when I bought it! :)

My biggest question right now (I'll most likely start a new thread on this) is how to power this thing. It's a single voltage 440 3-phase motor (no connections for low voltage). I'm not going to put the money into it to have the motor rewired, etc.. It's not worth it to me.

I've read some VFDs can be used, but it doesn't look like you can order a single phase to 3 phase VFD other than 110 volt to 220 volt. I think I'll call some distributors and see what they can offer. Buying either a static or rotary ($$$) phase converter is an option and use this with the transformers I got with the machine, but I'll like to keep the cost down. Static converter would be cheaper, but then you lose HP and maybe even RPM?

Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Ted
 

Joe in Oz

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#5
Hi.
I have a B&S 2B of similar age. And I too retro-fitted a direct drive. Seemed pointless to me to waste all the power in a belt and 6 pulleys just to drive the spindle. They DID come out with a direct drive version!
The motor and spindle are almost certainly joined with a Lovejoy type coupling to separate vibrations. So you should be able to remove the motor and see the other end bearing arrangement. As was already mentioned, the spindle you have is NOT original, but again, a cartridge spindle like yours was available at some stage. So my guess is that your spindle housing/block may be original and was fitted with a replacement spindle at some stage.
I have a manual of sorts for this model (in PDF). More of a parts list and brochure/accessory catalogue really. PM me your email address and I'll shoot it over to you.
Cheers,
Joe
 

Technical Ted

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#6
Got the spindle assembly out. One double set screw is all that holds it in. A lot easier to see once you get all the covers and guards off. Removed the screws, sprayed some Liquid Wrench and just a little tug on a strap wrench to break it free and it pulled right out.

Newest question: There is a threaded piece holding in a fine brass screen (see picture). I removed it and cleaned the crud that was laying on top of the screen out. Can't see anything through the hole except the shaft inside. When installed in the machine, this hole lines up with the piping shown in the bottom two pictures. The pipes swivel on that unthreaded stem that sticks up and there is no seal. It just pulls right off. My question: is this an air vent or meant for spindle oil? I don't want to fill it with oil if the bearings are sealed, but I also don't want to not oil it if it is meant to be oiled! o_O

Next move is to remove the socket head cap screws holding the spindle to the motor to see how the motor connects. Maybe I can see more when I do this and be able to tell if the bearings are sealed or not. I don't want to mess with those bearings though...

Ted
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Technical Ted

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#7
Another update. I disassembled the motor end of the spindle unit. Man, I don't know if the motor could have lasted long with 440 or not! It was loaded with crap and oil and I've seen some pretty dirty motors before! The insulation on the wires broke off every time I moved them.

So, as you can see in the pictures the motor armature and spindle shaft appear to be one in the same, long shaft. There were two screw covers on the end of the spindle housing with a felt washer between and when I removed them I could see that the bearing on the end was open so between that and the felt washer being there I think it's safe to assume that the piping in my earlier post is, in fact, for spindle oil.

So, for now, I'm going to work on the rest of the machine and get everything up to snuff. Then, my plan is now after seeing how this is made is to put the spindle assembly in my lathe chucking up on the end where the grinding wheel goes. Then holding the assembly body in my steady rest (and/or whatever I have to come up with to hold it), cut off most of the shaft and either machine a diameter for most likely a Lovejoy coupling or bore the end to insert a motor shaft if there is enough meat using the spindle bearings for shaft rotation while doing this. The lathe will just provide rotation and carriage feed.

I'll have to do some design work in Fusion 360 first, but I'll draw up an adapter plate and mount a single phase 3450 RPM 1 HP motor on it (probably a C face motor).

The 440 motor is in pretty ruff shape with the insulation being so bad and the 440 volt 3-phase is also an issue so I think this might very well be my best route.

I'll have some time to think about it while I'm working on the rest of the machine.

Ted

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Bob Korves

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#8
I am not so sharp on motorized ball bearing SG spindles, to say the least, but I will give my thoughts, which are worth what you paid for them. The "oiling system" makes no sense whatsoever to me. There should be a means of maintaining a constant level of clean oil in the spindle. Maybe the spindle is not completely sealed, and the excess oil poured in the tube is currently draining out into the motor. Just a guess, and I think there is a good chance that the motor/spindle is not meant to be oiled in the manner it seems to be now. It also looks like there is plenty of grit in the motor as well. A SG cannot have oil collecting grit in the motor or the spindle. It will eat them alive. Also, if the standpipe/filler whatever aftermarket lashup is meant to be left on the machine during operation, it would get contaminated by the grit dust in the air, and the screen would not stop it all.

I would try to learn from people smarter than me how that model spindle is intended to be lubricated, and I would not run the spindle until it is flushed out and refilled with the proper oil(?) to the proper level(?) and with a way of maintaining the oil level as it was intended(?). I would purchase a TEFC (totally enclosed, fan cooled) balanced motor with a good shaft coupler like a Lovejoy, and make sure the entire assembly is in balance to a high standard. Does the spindle turn nice and smooth with zero runout? If not, I think I would just start over with another likely candidate spindle and motor off another grinder being scrapped.

The spud sticking up out of the top of the spindle mounting flange, does it have a open hole in the top, or what? The photo is a bit blurry, so I cannot tell... What it goes into/onto is not the spindle, but rather is the slide that the lead screw moves up and down. The spindle assembly mounts to it. Makes no sense to me...

Pope Machinery Corp., who rebuilt the spindle at some point, is no longer in business.

Edit: Maybe the spindle is intended to be greased.
 
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Dabbler

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#9
On high speed spindles, such as in surface grinders, one should use caution in using greases. The lube system you describe sounds weird in my experience, but I haven't seen everything by a long shot. Maybe someone here has the same system or has seen this type of spindle in operation?

My B & S is a Valuemaster, and uses 6 (yes six!) belts to drive the spindle from a 2HP 3PH 240V motor. My spindle bearings are sealed, so I assume permanently lubricated....
 
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