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Gorton Mastermil variable speed head repair

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Gortonguy

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#1
I wanted to see if anyone has some experience with the variable speed head on the Gorton Mastermil 1-22. Mine is stuck on one speed so the variable speed pulley system must be seized up. I bought the mill cheap because it was not able to be powered up and it had been sitting for some time so I am not surprised the variable speed adjustment is frozen. When the spindle is powered up and I try to adjust the speed, the adjusting hand wheel only turns maybe 1/2 a turn in either direction and then drive belt starts slipping the more I try to change the speed. I have the maintenance manual for this mill, but it only describes taking the head apart to replace the drive belt and bearings. Before I take it that far apart, I wanted to know if there is an easier way to free up the pulley halves because there is nothing wrong with anything else in the head and I would rather not disassemble the whole thing if I don't have to.
 

Gortonguy

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I just wanted to post a follow up. I decided to apply some AeroKroil penetrant lube on the brass sleeve bearing that slides on the shaft for the driven pulley halves and let it sit to see if that would loosen anything up. Well, after a week of daily applications of the AeroKroil the pulley halves started moving more and more so now I have complete speed adjustment except I still have a problem with the fastest spindle speed settings. When the settings for the fastest speeds are dialed in, the drive belt starts to slip so either the belt is worn or the drives pulley halves on the motor are sticking or worn so it looks like I will have to pull the motor out of the head to find out what is wrong. It appears I fixed part of the problem, but if anyone has a suggestion on the best way to tackle the problem with pulley halves on the motor and/or drive belt, I am all ears.
 
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#3
You need to tear it down and clean out all of the crud that the Kroil has loosen up.

I've never tore down the head on a Mastermill, but it shouldn't be too hard to do. The biggest issue is handling the motor, up in the air, makes it difficult to get off unless you have a over head hoist to help you. The belt should be available from Motion Industries or your local bearing/ power transmission supplier. I think even Grainger has them, too.
 

Gortonguy

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Thanks Ken. I have pretty much come to the same conclusion as you on how to deal with this. Like you said, the biggest problem is going to be trying to safely pull the motor off of this beast. When I stand next to this mill, I can barely touch the top of the motor with my arm fully extended and I am 6'3" tall! It wont be easy raising the motor up either seeing as it is about the size of a 5 gallon bucket with no lifting eye and according to the maintenance manual must be tipped to get the belt off the pulley as it is raised up. I am hoping to use a beam on my garage ceiling with a chain fall hoist to pull the motor, but I will probably have to brace the beam if I don't want the garage roof to come crashing down on me!

I was worried the drive belt might be something proprietary to Gorton which if it was, means I would be relying on getting parts from Famco and generally they no longer stock any parts for these mills. Thanks for letting me know that purchasing a new belt should to be easy and not a concern.

Dan
 
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#5
Dan,

One thing you might want to do to help you out, if your ceiling has exposed joists, which it sounds like it does, use a couple of 2x6's or 2x8's for up rights to support the cross beam so you are not loading up the ceiling joists. Tie off the support beams to the ceiling rafters with c-clamps to keep the beams from shifting. tie off the beam to the support beams, too. What ever you do, work safely!

BTW- on the drive belt, I don't believe Gorton would ever specify a special drive belt for this when they were radially available back when this drive was developed. Of course on the paragraph's they built then, the belt was specially made for them, and they are still available today.
 

Gortonguy

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#6
Yes, this es exactly what I am intending to do as far as shoring up the ceiling. Some 2 X 6 boards under the beam in compression should work just fine.

Thanks again for the info on the belt!
 
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