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Setup and Continuing Saga of the Charter Oak 12Z

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wrmiller

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Coolidge: If we ever get the chance to meet face-to-face, I owe you several Adult Beverages. Again, a big thanks. (love this forum)

So I got everything mounted then the spindle wouldn't retract all the way up into the head. :panic:David has a o-ring in there that is too fat for my spindle. Have you ever tried shaving the inside of a o-ring with an Exacto knive? Glad no one was there watching.

Finally got that fixed, wired it up and turned it on. I had the pot turned down to zero when I flipped the FWD switch then watched the VFD remote as I started bringing up the frequency while looking for a fault. By the time I got to 20hz I was starting to worry because I couldn't hear anything other than the constant speed fan on the motor and the VFD (which is fairly noisy). Got to 30hz and I look over at the belt drive and it's spinning merrily AND NOT MAKING A SOUND. Seriously? This is too cool.

Once I started cranking it up I could start hearing the motor a little but that belt drive is spooky quiet. Oh and a big thanks to David for making a very high quality kit. Everything fits perfectly. No wobble on the drive motor pulley (I was careful to evenly torque the bolts on the drive pulley and never had it go out of kilter). This thing is leagues above my other belt drive kit I bought for the PM25.

So here's what it looks like up there.

DSCN4300.JPG

I have to fab a mounting bracket for the FWD/REV/OFF switch as the motor now sits higher and the factory was very skimpy with their cabling. Other than that, it's done. :))

DSCN4300.JPG
 

brav65

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Nice work Bill, I have a little bit of Machine envy even though I just got my machine, and have not even explored all of it's capabilities. I guess it is a guy thing. Congrats on this well executed upgrade!
 

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You probably don't have to put any oil back in the head since the gears are out? I noticed the oil froths out the vent more now that the oil is cold.
 

wrmiller

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You probably don't have to put any oil back in the head since the gears are out? I noticed the oil froths out the vent more now that the oil is cold.
Nope. Dry head from now on. No gears, no oil.

This gets rid of my seeping out the hi/low lever onto my vise leak too. :))
 

GA Gyro

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I do not know much about vertical head bed mills...
However a curiosity question: I realize the gears are gone, so no more oil needed for them.
What about the spindle bearings inside the head? Curious... THX!
 

wrmiller

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The spindle bearings are greased per design. The oil is only for the power transmission gearing and kept out of the spindle itself. So when you remove the gears there is no longer any need to have oil in the head.
 

GA Gyro

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The spindle bearings are greased per design. The oil is only for the power transmission gearing and kept out of the spindle itself. So when you remove the gears there is no longer any need to have oil in the head.
THX, did not know that.
 

zr8cnc

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I understand the belt drive kit will raise the motor higher. Do you how many inches the kit actually raised the motor?
 

wrmiller

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I understand the belt drive kit will raise the motor higher. Do you how many inches the kit actually raised the motor?
About 4.1".
 

wrmiller

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I honestly don't know. After removal of the spindle oil seal and it's housing, you can see the top spindle bearing and preload nut. But I didn't really look at it to see what it would take to go any further. I don't know if you could remove the spindle from the quill without removing it from the head first or not. Once you get all the gears out of the head there really isn't anything else in there except the quill/spindle assy. :)

Oh, and I screwed up the original height number. I was measuring from the bottom of the top plate to the bottom of the motor plate. The original top plate looks to also be about 1" thick, so I would guesstimate that the overall net gain in height is more like 3", not 4". Sorry.
 
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zr8cnc

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Thanks for the quick reply. Also I am happy to know its 3" and not 4" as I have a height constraint and could use every inch. I live about an hour away from CO and could always have them swap the bearings.

I honestly don't know. After removal of the spindle oil seal and it's housing, you can see the top spindle bearing and preload nut. But I didn't really look at it to see what it would take to go any further. I don't know if you could remove the spindle from the quill without removing it from the head first or not. Once you get all the gears out of the head there really isn't anything else in there except the quill/spindle assy. :)

Oh, and I screwed up the original height number. I was measuring from the bottom of the top plate to the bottom of the motor plate. The original top plate looks to also be about 1" thick, so I would guesstimate that the overall net gain in height is more lie 3", not 4". Sorry.
 

wrmiller

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They put my upgraded bearings in when they did the 3hp motor install. Probably because it's a 3600 rpm motor and the stock one is 1800.

Keep in mind that unless you are using really tall fixturing or working on really big parts the motor is likely to not go much over the top of the column. I spend most of my time working down on a 5" vise and seldom get the head very high on the column. But you have to put it up there at least once, just to see what all that Z-axis travel looks like. :)

My friend's BP clone didn't have this much travel in Z. Pretty certain I won't be using all of this any time soon, unless I'm decking a small v-8 block or something.
 

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looks great, only thing you have to do is engrave the front plate now .
 

coolidge

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looks great, only thing you have to do is engrave the front plate now .
If you want a ultra cool front plate the company to contact is Front Panel Express here in Washington State. You can order a precision CNC machined front panel drilled, machined, engraved in a variety of thicknesses. Materials include and anodized aluminum in a variety of colors, powder coated, Acrylic, plus they will infill the engraving with contrasting colors.

No wait, it gets cooler. They developed their own easy to use CAD software you can download for free to design your panel. The damn quoting for price and ordering is built in, as a software engineer let me tell you this is pretty cool stuff. Its not Mastercam or anything but they really make this easy.

http://www.frontpanelexpress.com/

panel.jpg

panel.jpg
 

wrmiller

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Ok, so a friend here is threatening to embarrass me if I don't report on how this new belt drive actually works (probably don't need to mention his name... ;)

So I clamped a piece of HRS I had laying around and took a 50 thou swipe. Not even sure the mill knew it was cutting anything. My apologies everyone, as I've gotten used to using smaller machines over the last decade and am used to the machine being the limiter of my cuts instead of the material and cutter.

So I took a .25 DOC full-width pass with a 1/2" fine carbide rougher at a fairly moderate pace on the power feed. I think El Hefe knew he was cutting something, but it barely registered. Chips were coming out a little blue so I backed off the spindle speed and the feed rate a bit and the mill just hummed along smooth as butter. No muss, no fuss. And hardly any noise at all. This thing is almost TOO quiet.

I am going to go through a phase here where I am going to toast a few cutters here and there, as I am not used to having a machine that can overpower a cutter in very short order. (prior to the belt change I took a 3/8" carbide rougher and buried it full depth in 1" thick steel like I was profiling a piece of wood on a jigsaw. Dark blue chips, and could have used a bit of coolant to protect the cutter, but the mill wasn't even straining a bit. I'm really liking this mill...)

So anyway, here's a few 'action shots' to appease Charles (oops...) :rofl:

DSCN4303.JPG
DSCN4304.JPG
DSCN4305.JPG
DSCN4306.JPG

Here's a quartering shot of El Hefe wearing his new belt drive. I think he looks pretty good. But then I'm probably biased a bit.

DSCN4302.JPG

I need to come clean on something though: I screwed up the reinstall of the electrical somehow (well...I know what I did, just not sure how). The motor now spins opposite of what it used to. So...I promptly ruined a brand new 1/2" carbide end mill before I realized what had happened. :angry: Lets just say there were plenty of 'bad words' flying around the shop for a bit as I examined three chipped flutes out of four.

But rather than ruin the moment, I just put the fwd/rev switch in reverse and took the cuts and pictures. But after stopping and starting the machine a few times I decided I liked the fact that you turn the switch clockwise to get the motor spinning clockwise and counterclockwise to spin the motor counterclockwise. So I took a sharpie and lined out the words 'Forward' and 'Reverse' on the switch and put a big 'F' and 'R' in the top corners of the switch label. It just makes sense to me this way (OK, I'm left-handed/right-brained but so what...) Those of you who are machine purists can gasp if you want but I'm going to leave it like this. :lmao:

Nobody's perfect. Least of all me.

DSCN4303.JPG DSCN4304.JPG DSCN4305.JPG DSCN4306.JPG DSCN4302.JPG
 

zr8cnc

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AWESOME FEEDBACK!

Ok, so a friend here is threatening to embarrass me if I don't report on how this new belt drive actually works (probably don't need to mention his name... ;)

So I clamped a piece of HRS I had laying around and took a 50 thou swipe. Not even sure the mill knew it was cutting anything. My apologies everyone, as I've gotten used to using smaller machines over the last decade and am used to the machine being the limiter of my cuts instead of the material and cutter.

So I took a .25 DOC full-width pass with a 1/2" fine carbide rougher at a fairly moderate pace on the power feed. I think El Hefe knew he was cutting something, but it barely registered. Chips were coming out a little blue so I backed off the spindle speed and the feed rate a bit and the mill just hummed along smooth as butter. No muss, no fuss. And hardly any noise at all. This thing is almost TOO quiet.

I am going to go through a phase here where I am going to toast a few cutters here and there, as I am not used to having a machine that can overpower a cutter in very short order. (prior to the belt change I took a 3/8" carbide rougher and buried it full depth in 1" thick steel like I was profiling a piece of wood on a jigsaw. Dark blue chips, and could have used a bit of coolant to protect the cutter, but the mill wasn't even straining a bit. I'm really liking this mill...)

So anyway, here's a few 'action shots' to appease Charles (oops...) :rofl:

View attachment 93859
View attachment 93860
View attachment 93861
View attachment 93863

Here's a quartering shot of El Hefe wearing his new belt drive. I think he looks pretty good. But then I'm probably biased a bit.

View attachment 93864

I need to come clean on something though: I screwed up the reinstall of the electrical somehow (well...I know what I did, just not sure how). The motor now spins opposite of what it used to. So...I promptly ruined a brand new 1/2" carbide end mill before I realized what had happened. :angry: Lets just say there were plenty of 'bad words' flying around the shop for a bit as I examined three chipped flutes out of four.

But rather than ruin the moment, I just put the fwd/rev switch in reverse and took the cuts and pictures. But after stopping and starting the machine a few times I decided I liked the fact that you turn the switch clockwise to get the motor spinning clockwise and counterclockwise to spin the motor counterclockwise. So I took a sharpie and lined out the words 'Forward' and 'Reverse' on the switch and put a big 'F' and 'R' in the top corners of the switch label. It just makes sense to me this way (OK, I'm left-handed/right-brained but so what...) Those of you who are machine purists can gasp if you want but I'm going to leave it like this. :lmao:

Nobody's perfect. Least of all me.
 

arizonavideo

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Its nice to see it all working so well.

With smaller bits often you can talk just fine while milling.
 

wrmiller

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wrmiller

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Ok, now I'm not sure I did anything wrong when I re-connected the wiring. Looking at the front of the motor, there's a big red arrow indicating the direction of spin to be counter-clockwise (looking down on the motor). This is the normal direction of rotation when the fwd/off/rev switch is in the 'fwd' position.

But with the belt drive installed, a counter-clockwise spinning motor also has the spindle turning counter-clockwise which is the WRONG direction for a regular end mill. WTF?!?

When I gutted the head, I removed four shafts: one on the motor, two intermediate, and one on the spindle. So if the motor is spinning CCW, the spindle will spin CW given that arrangement.

Maybe I didn't wire the motor backwards... :thinking:

David?
 

arizonavideo

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To change the rotation of a three phase motor you just switch any two wires and it will run the other way.

I have not heard of people running backwards but it is so easy to change rotation perhaps no one said anything.

If your used to the switch flipping one way to go one way then stay with that and flip the wires.
 

wrmiller

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Does it hurt the motor to leave it the way it is, i.e. does the motor have a preferred rotation? Thanks.
 

John Hasler

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Does it hurt the motor to leave it the way it is, i.e. does the motor have a preferred rotation? Thanks.
The motor will be perfectly happy running either way.
 

wrmiller

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Thanks John! :)
 

zmotorsports

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Looks like a very nice setup you have there Bill. Congrats.

Mike.
 

wrmiller

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zr8cnc

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Wrmiller19,

How heavy was the gear head when you removed it from the column? Is this something that can be done without a hoist or overhead crane?
 

zr8cnc

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I am getting excited to add a belt conversion to my pm45 CNC. I ordered a nice baldor 3hp motor last night and I am now I am looking for a good easy replacement for my delta 2hp vfd for a 3hp vfd.
 

wrmiller

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Wrmiller19,

How heavy was the gear head when you removed it from the column? Is this something that can be done without a hoist or overhead crane?
I didn't remove the head to do the belt drive conversion. Paul at Charter Oak suggested I just lower the head to the table and use a step stool (wife had one handy that she uses in the kitchen) to get high enough to work. Wasn't sure that was possible as I had CO add 4" of height to the stand when they built it. Actually though, I did most of the diss-assembly while standing on the floor. It wasn't until I had to lift the top plate clear of the spindle that I climbed up on the little step ladder.

If you want to remove the head though, I suggest something similar to the method Paul described to do the one-shot oiling mod for the head carrier:

Stack two 4x4s on either side of the quill and lower the head until all load is taken off the Z-axis screw. Strap the head down to the table using two eye bolts with 1/2" threads to a couple of t-slot nuts. Unbolt the head from the column and use the Y-axis screw to walk the head away from the column. Reverse the process to re-install. This is what they do when putting the one-shot oiling system on their CNC and manual machines.

According to Paul the head of the CO mill weighs about 300 lbs. At that point I decided I didn't want to even think about removing that puppy. ;)

I will mention however that to reinstall the top plate with the belt drive and motor already installed and aligned I ended up literally standing on the mill's chip pan to do this. The assy weighed about 60 lbs or so and trying to balance it while getting it over the splines of the quill required that I get high enough to have some leverage/control. I'm not sure if your mill's stand will permit this but the CO stand is wide enough that I can get my 13EEEs on either side of the mill base and right over the legs of the stand. It was comforting to note that even with my largess up there, the mill and stand was as stable as if I was standing on the concrete floor of my garage. :))
 

zr8cnc

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thank you for the detailed response. I will just lower the head to the table and start my disassembly.

I didn't remove the head to do the belt drive conversion. Paul at Charter Oak suggested I just lower the head to the table and use a step stool (wife had one handy that she uses in the kitchen) to get high enough to work. Wasn't sure that was possible as I had CO add 4" of height to the stand when they built it. Actually though, I did most of the diss-assembly while standing on the floor. It wasn't until I had to lift the top plate clear of the spindle that I climbed up on the little step ladder.

If you want to remove the head though, I suggest something similar to the method Paul described to do the one-shot oiling mod for the head carrier:

Stack two 4x4s on either side of the quill and lower the head until all load is taken off the Z-axis screw. Strap the head down to the table using two eye bolts with 1/2" threads to a couple of t-slot nuts. Unbolt the head from the column and use the Y-axis screw to walk the head away from the column. Reverse the process to re-install. This is what they do when putting the one-shot oiling system on their CNC and manual machines.

According to Paul the head of the CO mill weighs about 300 lbs. At that point I decided I didn't want to even think about removing that puppy. ;)

I will mention however that to reinstall the top plate with the belt drive and motor already installed and aligned I ended up literally standing on the mill's chip pan to do this. The assy weighed about 60 lbs or so and trying to balance it while getting it over the splines of the quill required that I get high enough to have some leverage/control. I'm not sure if your mill's stand will permit this but the CO stand is wide enough that I can get my 13EEEs on either side of the mill base and right over the legs of the stand. It was comforting to note that even with my largess up there, the mill and stand was as stable as if I was standing on the concrete floor of my garage. :))
 
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