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New-to-me project Rockwell Horizontal Mill

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wolfsburged

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#1
Picked this up Rockwell 21-120 Horizontal Mill today and drug it home to the garage. Eventually will be stripping it down to clean, paint, and move to the basement shop. Previous owner didn't really know what it was, used it as a horizontal drill press. Came with a ton of cutters, arbors, etc. Still cataloging what I have.

It runs and spindle seems to be good. A few bruises that need to be remedied:
  • Motor capacitor just hanging, need to replace and find cover
  • Right hand of table missing handwheel and support - was told it had a power feed at one time, now missing
  • X-axis lead screw has a slight bend at the end, will need to disassemble and see if I can straighten in the lathe
  • Z-axis hand wheel broken and repaired poorly
Otherwise the spindle seems tight with no run out, and Z and Y axis move very smoothly. X runs good until very end due to the lead screw.

Ultimately I want to fit a vertical head on this machine. Either original Rockwell, or aftermarket (Bridgeport M head or Rusnok / etc).

If anyone has leads on parts I would be interested in bits to replace or repair the issues listed above, as well as any or all parts to convert to vertical operation.

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KIMG1004%20(Small).jpg


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kd4gij

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#2
Nice score. :dancing banana:
 

Silverbullet

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#3
Santa dropped that at the wrong address , ill be sending him back .
Rockwell made a wide variety of machines .I like the ones I own , my pop owned several in the woodworking line. YUPP I still have them too.
Good save nice lot of cutters too.
 

polyfractal

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#4
Nice haul! Looks to be in great condition? How big is that monster cutter in the back?

Someone added a power feed to my Rockwell, on the right side. It looks like they fabricated a custom end-piece out of aluminum to attach between the table and the power feed. You could probably do the same, it doesn't look like too difficult of a component to mill (essentially just a mirror of the left side).

The z-axis handle made me laugh though. "Ehh... this'll work" :) Shame they welded to the original handle rather than just building a new one.
 

wolfsburged

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#5
I've been busy cleaning, stripping, and painting the mill after basic disassembly.

After a gallon of Simple Green and a few passes of CitriStrip I was able to mask and paint the parts on an opportunistic warm day.

KIMG1066-800x600.JPG

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I was lucky enough to snag a full set of X and Y leadscrews and nut from someone converting to CNC ballscrews, which will solve my bent and cut off X axis screw.

I also have located a Bridgeport M Head with a round column adapter for a reasonable sum which is underway. I also procured a generic X axis power feed which I will mount on reassembly.

While everything is apart I am replacing bearings in the motor and leadscrew handles.

Main issues remaining are missing or broken parts:

1. Missing all of the right hand x-axis parts still. Handle, graduated dial, and bearing holder/cast support. Photo of left hand mostly identical parts for reference:
KIMG1035-800x600.JPG

2. After closer inspection I found that the overarm support is cracked. Not sure that this can be repaired due to the location and stress on the area when clamped:
KIMG1041-800x600.JPG

Working also on prepping the final location in the basement and figuring out logistics to move it.
 

Silverbullet

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#6
Is it cast iron? If it is I'd braze it up or tig it with silicon bronze . It shouldn't be a problem , heat it up after grinding a vee around the break , then do your braze , after wrap in an old blanket and put in an oven to Kool down slowly. Or by looking closely it would be an easy build , just make a new one , upgrade the bearing while building. You can do it we will help if needed.
 

eeler1

Dang, buggered that up too!!
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#7
yes, brazing or tig is worth a try, but that’s a tough spot for a crack in cast iron, stressed every time you tighten the overarm. Get it brazed, but be on the lookout for a replacement.
 

easttex

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#8
Could you turn a replacement out of a slab of cold rolled?

I ask this because I saw a fellow on YouTube make an overarm support for a smaller Atlas horizontal miller a while back.
 
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FOMOGO

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#9
If you haven't already seen it Keith Fenner has a very good Youtube video on screw straightening. Nice work on the cleanup and paint. Mike
 

brino

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#10

wolfsburged

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#11
Making progress!

More parts and progress for the Rockwell horizontal milling machine. Bought an M series Bridgeport head with round column adapter to fit onto the horizontal mill. This will give me options to do either horizontal or vertical milling. Found a replacement knee crank handle, and got the cracked cast iron overarm support welded and reinforced. New bearings for the horizontal motor and the crank handles have arrived, as well as new start capacitor.

M head will be checked out, cleaned and painted. Will need to make a reducing bushing from the 3.5" of the round column adapter to the 3-1/8" overarm on the mill. The M head has a 1/2HP single phase motor. I have a few VFDs and would love to find a 3 phase motor so I can do variable speed. Otherwise for now the single phase motor will be checked out, new bearings if needed, etc.

Next will be doing some concrete prep for the mill. Have a 26" square 3/8" steel plate which will be mounted with threaded rod into concrete for leveling, then grouted underneath.

KIMG1135 (Small).JPG KIMG1138 (Small).JPG KIMG1141~2 (Small).JPG
 
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