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What is your opinion of this Bridgeport? Buying Advice

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JetMech

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#1
Hello, I posted here about a year ago asking advice about some benchtop mills. I got a really good response with lots of hlepful info from many kind people. Ultimately, I did not buy a benchtop mill or any mill. Essentially I was convinced by you guys that it was a better deal to get a larger used mill like a Bridgeport, and just figure out some way to cram it in my garage. The hobby size import mills are simply too expensive for what they are, and a used BP is more mill for less money, potentially.

Well, one finally came up on CL, and the price isn't completely ridiculous like it is on most stuff that gets listed around here. You can see the ad itself here.

It is a 1982 Series 1, with what I believe is the 2J2 head, 2HP, Vari-SPeed. The guy bought it at auction and just doesn't use it much or know much about it, and is ready to part with it.

It seems like it might be an OK mill, but I don't have much experience and would appreciate any advice or thoughts on the value of this mill.

I will repost some of the pics from the ad here with my concerns:

mill 1.jpg
Here is the mill in question. It seems in ok shape for being 36 years old. It does have some rust on the table and the vise.

mill 2.jpg
It has a BP power feed, but the owner tells me it works in one direction but only sometimes works in the other direction. He did send short video showing that it can be made to work in both directions, so it probably (maybe) isn't a serious issue.


mill 3.jpg
These next two pictures sort of flummox me- to my untrained eye, those scrapings look perfect, and I can't see any wear. However, the top of the dovetail ways are really dinged up and have lots of marks, and basically the whole mill has lots of rash and dings. It looks like it was used roughly.



mill 4.jpg
Like here- the scrapings look great, but the egde of the dovetail part has a huge ding 2/3 of the way up- is this normal for machines to have this level of marks?


mill 5.jpg
It comes with a functional but very basic Fagor DRO readout. I'm not sure how much I really need features but all modern DROs have many buttons and features. I mean, this has a zero button and nothing else. . . I might like the bolt hole pattern feature or ceter finding or anything the newer ones can do. Might not be a deal breaker thoughk, and perhaps I can get a more modern head without having to buy new scales, but I'm not sure if that will work or not.


mill 6.jpg
This pic is indicative of the overall condition- every single part is covered in little dings, like the handwheel above. The guy did send a cellphone vid with it running, and demonstrated that the vari-speed and power downfeeed worked. However, the head sounds loud and rackety on the video. I looked around an rebuild parts for the vari-speed are $300 or so.



mill 7.jpg
The powerfeeed mostly works as described above. I know some guys like these original ones, but again, on the video, the thing sounded really loud and it sticks out and is heavy. I might end up needing to get a more modern one. I've heard these are so heavy they can actually bend the table, hope that isn't the case here.


mill 8.jpg
I'm not familiar with this ty pe of phase converter, and I'd really hoped to get a belt drive BP and convert it to VFD drive for variable speed because it is easier and quieter. Web research makes it seem like I can make this vari-speed work with a vfd also.


mill 9.jpg
I can't see a brand on this rusty vise but assume it is of import quality. I'd have to get a better vise for sure.


mill 10.jpg

Anyway, this BP would definately be better than no BP, but it certainly isn't cherry. If the price were right I could work around some of the issues, and I bet that rust will clean up.

He has a set of collets, a handful of mills, a set of reamers, and a few hold-down items that will come with it.

I feel like the guy wants too much for it with all its little issues, but the thing is, these don't come up on CL around here often and when they do, they are WAY overpriced. In fact, this one isn't that local, I'd have to drive 3 hours one way to get it, and am not entirely sure how I'm going to get it off a trailer and in my garage if I do buy it.

But there isn't much better on offer, and I've been watching CL for over a year- this mill isn't quite what I'd hoped to find, but it would certainly do fine. I'm a hobbyist that just wants to noodle with it, no serious goals. I also have a Grizz G4003G 12x36 lathe.

So guys, what value would you put on this mill? Intersted in any opinions on either side- is it a hard pass, or are the issues perhaps not as serious as they might seem? Any advice will be helpful as I make my determination of how mcuh to offer, or whether to wait for the next one.
 

Cooter Brown

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#2
This is a very nice machine!

That is a Static phase converter, its just a start or run capacitor and maybe a relay. Its very easy to rewire these machines to a VFD.
 

JetMech

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Here are 3 videos demonstrating operation. I'm not sure if the sounds I'm hearing are normal or noisy- the Vari-Speed seems like it's making some racket. Everything seems to work, though.
 

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JetMech

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#4
This is a very nice machine!

That is a Static phase converter, its just a start or run capacitor and maybe a relay. Its very easy to rewire these machines to a VFD.
Hey Cooter, thanks for your reply.

What aspects of this machine make you classify it as "very nice"? Are you saying the wear is typical or maybe even better than typical for this vintage of machine?

Thanks for looking!
 

Cooter Brown

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#5
It still has the oil scraping on the ways still visible, its a 2HP Series 2 and its a 2J comes with a DRO and power feed are kidding me you better go buy it!

Your next post better be a picture of it on your truck.....
 

ttabbal

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#6
The wear doesn't look bad to me. I'm still a new mill user though. I wouldn't worry about the power feed. It's probably a iffy switch. You can run it on a VFD if you want to.

I think the vari-speed heads tend to be louder. So long as everything moves without binding or similar, I'd go for it if it's a good price for your area. Don't worry about age, mine is a early 1960s vintage and it's solid. The rust looks like light surface rust. I removed worse on mine with evaporust.
 

Winegrower

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#7
I expect it will be gone by the time you decide you are looking at a good deal.
 

Janderso

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#8
Buy it!!!!!
 

markba633csi

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#9
Looks too good to be true to me- those scrape marks look too fresh- may be lipstick on a pig- be careful. Those vari-speed heads can be a bear to rebuild too, I personally would hold out for a step-pulley model.
I would be surprised if that mill is not badly worn
mark
ps just a bit of cynicism to offset the optimism
 

JetMech

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It still has the oil scraping on the ways still visible, its a 2HP Series 2 and its a 2J comes with a DRO and power feed are kidding me you better go buy it!

Your next post better be a picture of it on your truck.....
Yes, I like the idea that the machine has nice scrapings visible. Thanks for the advice!


The wear doesn't look bad to me. I'm still a new mill user though. I wouldn't worry about the power feed. It's probably a iffy switch. You can run it on a VFD if you want to.

I think the vari-speed heads tend to be louder. So long as everything moves without binding or similar, I'd go for it if it's a good price for your area. Don't worry about age, mine is a early 1960s vintage and it's solid. The rust looks like light surface rust. I removed worse on mine with evaporust.
I agree with that, thanks for the confirmation.


I expect it will be gone by the time you decide you are looking at a good deal.
That might well be, so I'm trying to make up my mind, and figure out where to get a drop deck trailer and all that.

I defnitely think this mill has potential and most folks so far don't seem too worried about the conditionof the machine, but the question is, how much to offer? He's indicated a willingness to go a little below his asked price of $3250.

Would everyone still say this is a great deal at approximately 3 grand?
 

JetMech

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Looks too good to be true to me- those scrape marks look too fresh- may be lipstick on a pig- be careful. Those vari-speed heads can be a bear to rebuild too, I personally would hold out for a step-pulley model.
I would be surprised if that mill is not badly worn
mark
ps just a bit of cynicism to offset the optimism
No problem I'm happy to hear all opinions. I will of course run the table back and forth, in and out and all that before I commit to buy. I"m looking into the vari-speed rebuild right now, there are some vids on it. If I buy this I will be prepared for it to need the $300 rebuild kit for that, I'm sort of figuring that into the value.

Heh heh, one more vote for "go for it!" Thanks.
 

markba633csi

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#12
You may have to budget more to rebuild the head depending on condition of bearings and shafts, etc. Just sayin'
Like the scouts say "be prepared"
 

projectnut

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#13
I have a 1 1/2 hp series 1 built in 1972. This one looks to be in similar shape to mine. I did not view the videos in that I am out of town and have a very poor internet connection. BP's are good machines and are probably the cheapest of any to tool up.

If you're interested I would offer something in the neighborhood of $2,200.00 to $2,500.00. Both the DRO and power feed are ancient. The DRO likely will cost more to fix (if parts are even available) than it would to replace should it fail. The same is true of the power feed. There are several companies that sell parts, but by in large it's more cost effective to replace them with a more modern unit.

At this time I wouldn't worry about a VFD. The machine will run perfectly well on the static converter. I have been running mine on a Phase A Matic 3 hp converter for nearly 20 years with no problems. The speed change is easily done with the shift mechanism crank handle. Wait until you become more familiar with the machine and it's current capabilities before making changes. I think you'll find you'll want to spend the money on tooling rather than a fancier control system.

The downside is that you don't know much of the history behind the machine. Ask the current owner who was auctioning off the machine. Was it in a production shop, a repair shop, or possibly a local school? Some history would be helpful to determine how the machine has been treated over the last 30+ years. The serial number should be stamped near the front on top of the knee. Copy it down and go online to find the actual year it was built.

Here's a link to one of the many serial number charts available:
http://northeastprecision.com/calculators-bridgport.html

If it's in good condition, and the tooling you describe isn't all beat up I would say go for it at $2,500.00 or less.

As a side note mine came from a local high school. It didn't come with a DRO, power feed, or much tooling other than an original Bridgeport vise. I added a DRO later. Although it was several years ago the machine was in excellent condition, and I paid less than half what the owner is asking for this machine. So far I've spent less than $200.00 in repairs and upgrades other than the DRO.
 

JetMech

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You may have to budget more to rebuild the head depending on condition of bearings and shafts, etc. Just sayin'
Like the scouts say "be prepared"
I'll keep it in mind.

I have a 1 1/2 hp series 1 built in 1972. This one looks to be in similar shape to mine. I did not view the videos in that I am out of town and have a very poor internet connection. BP's are good machines and are probably the cheapest of any to tool up.

If you're interested I would offer something in the neighborhood of $2,200.00 to $2,500.00. Both the DRO and power feed are ancient. The DRO likely will cost more to fix (if parts are even available) than it would to replace should it fail. The same is true of the power feed. There are several companies that sell parts, but by in large it's more cost effective to replace them with a more modern unit.

At this time I wouldn't worry about a VFD. The machine will run perfectly well on the static converter. I have been running mine on a Phase A Matic 3 hp converter for nearly 20 years with no problems. The speed change is easily done with the shift mechanism crank handle. Wait until you become more familiar with the machine and it's current capabilities before making changes. I think you'll find you'll want to spend the money on tooling rather than a fancier control system.

The downside is that you don't know much of the history behind the machine. Ask the current owner who was auctioning off the machine. Was it in a production shop, a repair shop, or possibly a local school? Some history would be helpful to determine how the machine has been treated over the last 30+ years. The serial number should be stamped near the front on top of the knee. Copy it down and go online to find the actual year it was built.

Here's a link to one of the many serial number charts available:
http://northeastprecision.com/calculators-bridgport.html

If it's in good condition, and the tooling you describe isn't all beat up I would say go for it at $2,500.00 or less.

As a side note mine came from a local high school. It didn't come with a DRO, power feed, or much tooling other than an original Bridgeport vise. I added a DRO later. Although it was several years ago the machine was in excellent condition, and I paid less than half what the owner is asking for this machine. So far I've spent less than $200.00 in repairs and upgrades other than the DRO.

I looked up the serial, it is a 1982 model. Thanks for your detailed advice. I appreciate the pricing information.

I agree I should live with the vari-speed for a while, might not really need any updating. It might be noisy, but I bet it isn't as noisy as my unisaw or routers.
 

JetMech

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#15
I drew a quick sketchup to se how it wold fit in my garage bay. Trying to have woodwroking an d metal working in one oversize bay is a challenge.

lathe mill plan.png

The orange box is the lathe envelope and the red bar is the bore, extended out so I could see that long pieces could fit through if need be. I usually work on really short stuff though.

I saw a guy put his on 3x4 tube, so he could pick it up with a pallet jack which was stored under the mill, I like this idea and will likely copy that when I do get a mill. User Piniongear on PM is who I plan to copy:
millpipes.jpg
 

JimDawson

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#16
The veri-speed sounds a bit noisy, probably the plastic bushing on the motor shaft, or maybe just the belt. A VFD or the static phase converter will run it just fine.

The dings in the top of the V are from chips getting between the saddle and the ways, not a big deal, it's not a wear surface, just clearance. A way cover would eliminate that problem. The ways look good from what I could see.

The power feed is a bit noisy, sounds like it could use some grease. Could also be that the ways are dry and the machine just needs to be cleaned and lubed, or maybe the table lock is snugged up.

Machine prices vary by region and availability. I would probably not pay $3250 for that machine around here, but there are several similar machines available, including the rather hopeful fellow who wants $8000 for one exactly like we are talking about here. o_O
 

vocatexas

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#17
I recently made a deal on a barely used 1965 Vari-Speed similar to yours. We agreed on $3800. The seller bought the mill new and has hardly used it since. It also came with a pretty nice pile of tooling. If your area is like mine, machinery is not easy to find and I was very lucky to come across this one. Prices are going to tend to be higher in areas where machinery is harder to come by. I'm also getting his 14 1/2x72 South Bend of like vintage with some attachments still in their original boxes.
 

killswitch505

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#18
I recently made a deal on a barely used 1965 Vari-Speed similar to yours. We agreed on $3800. The seller bought the mill new and has hardly used it since. It also came with a pretty nice pile of tooling. If your area is like mine, machinery is not easy to find and I was very lucky to come across this one. Prices are going to tend to be higher in areas where machinery is harder to come by. I'm also getting his 14 1/2x72 South Bend of like vintage with some attachments still in their original boxes.
That’s a score!!!!!
 

FOMOGO

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#19
I have a 1974 version of the same mill, 1.5 hp. I think the power feed would be a fairly easy fix, most likely an electrical contact issue, and the bridgeprt version is IMHO better than the aftermarket versions. There should be a oil level window on the front of the power feed, should be about half full. With the advent of VFD's, everyone seems to want the belt and pulley versions, but I've had no problems with my variable speed head. I paid $2500 for mine 6-7 years ago, and I spent several years actively looking. In the Denver area, the average price is around 4-6k. Anything under that is rarely seen, and gone in a heart beat. If you've been to the supermarket lately, you know nothing is getting cheaper, and that's true of vintage machinery too. Good hunting, Mike
 

Chipper5783

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#20
Get out there an buy it. If you want to buy a mill, then quit dithering and get at it. That is not a "bad" machine. You are buying a used machine off Craig's list - there is no guarantee. Even if the seller is totally genuine, the machine may fail the first time you try it. Even if you buy a new machine, that still does not ensure there is no problem (yes there there will be a warranty, but there may still be problems). That is not a "bad machine" - all used machines need TLC - that is what puts it in your price range. Of course you will need to do some cleaning and fixing.

As others have said, just clean and service it. You will discover a number of things that need repair - so fix them, and start using it. Once you know what you actually have - then you can decide how you want to fancy it up.

That machine is fine. Don't expect it to be perfect. The base machine seems to be fine, so buy it, haul it home and get to work.

Strictly speaking the price does not really matter (a few hundred extra is fine). You can easily blow more than that if the transport is further or if you have to spend much time mucking around. There are lots of other costs in this game, and you are going to own the machine for many years. Within reason, the purchase price does not matter very much. I bought my first lathe 35 years ago for $10,000. I paid about double what I should have - I have long since forgotten about that extra cost. I have since bought about 7 more machines - and all put together they come to about what that first lathe cost (sort of dollar cost averaging). Don't sweat it, just get in the game.
 
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killswitch505

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#21
That’s a killer deal around here (West Texas-New Mexico) looked pretty clean to me... the ways did look a little too clean :/ my Search radius kept expanding and took me almost a year to find “the one” I was hoping to find something like that within 5-6 hour of me to no avail.... my budget went from 3-4K to 5-6k ended up picking one up in Houston (12 hour drive) for 4K with no tooling. So yeah I’d probably buy that in a heartbeat
 

Eddyde

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#22
Looks like a nice mill. Price is at the high end for my location but we're swimming in used machines around here... Offer a little less and see what he says.
 

JetMech

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#23
The veri-speed sounds a bit noisy, probably the plastic bushing on the motor shaft, or maybe just the belt. A VFD or the static phase converter will run it just fine.

The dings in the top of the V are from chips getting between the saddle and the ways, not a big deal, it's not a wear surface, just clearance. A way cover would eliminate that problem. The ways look good from what I could see.

The power feed is a bit noisy, sounds like it could use some grease. Could also be that the ways are dry and the machine just needs to be cleaned and lubed, or maybe the table lock is snugged up.

Machine prices vary by region and availability. I would probably not pay $3250 for that machine around here, but there are several similar machines available, including the rather hopeful fellow who wants $8000 for one exactly like we are talking about here. o_O
Right, yeah, there is one on my local CL that is over 8 grand- it's nice but no way!

I appreciate your comments about the pricing, power feed, and condition. I have been reading a lot about all the aspects of the vari-speed drive and I agree that if serviced, it will likely be satisfactory.

One good thing about a machine with a few dings is it makes it hurt a lot less when you make the first good ding of your own. . . Like the first door ding in a brand new car- always the worst!

I recently made a deal on a barely used 1965 Vari-Speed similar to yours. We agreed on $3800. The seller bought the mill new and has hardly used it since. It also came with a pretty nice pile of tooling. If your area is like mine, machinery is not easy to find and I was very lucky to come across this one. Prices are going to tend to be higher in areas where machinery is harder to come by. I'm also getting his 14 1/2x72 South Bend of like vintage with some attachments still in their original boxes.
Wow, I would gladly drop $3800 on a one-owner machine. Great find! Tooling also. . . And yes, this area is sort of a desert for used machines like this. Not many of those out here where farming is the activity rather than manufacturing, I suppose.

Get out there an buy it. If you want to buy a mill, then quit dithering and get at it. That is not a "bad" machine. You are buying a used machine off Craig's list - there is no guarantee. Even if the seller is totally genuine, the machine may fail the first time you try it. Even if you buy a new machine, that still does not ensure there is no problem (yes there there will be a warranty, but there may still be problems). That is not a "bad machine" - all used machines need TLC - that is what puts it in your price range. Of course you will need to do some cleaning and fixing.

As others have said, just clean and service it. You will discover a number of things that need repair - so fix them, and start using it. Once you know what you actually have - then you can decide how you want to fancy it up.

That machine is fine. Don't expect it to be perfect. The base machine seems to be fine, so buy it, haul it home and get to work.

Strictly speaking the price does not really matter (a few hundred extra is fine). You can easily blow more than that if the transport is further or if you have to spend much time mucking around. . . .. Don't sweat it, just get in the game.
Thanks Chipper, that is some really great advice and I'm going to take it. I agree with your assessment of the deal and what to expect. You are totally right to get it going before I make elaborate plans about changing the drive system.

And it's almost like you know me, to tell me to quit expecting perfection and get to making chips. No doubt I should! And I won't worry if I pay a few more dollars than the next guy, every guy has his good deals and his ok deals, it won't kill me. The cash for this is coming from the sale of some absolutely useless pinball machines so really, I can't go wrong.

That’s a killer deal around here (West Texas-New Mexico) looked pretty clean to me... the ways did look a little too clean :/ my Search radius kept expanding and took me almost a year to find “the one” I was hoping to find something like that within 5-6 hour of me to no avail.... my budget went from 3-4K to 5-6k ended up picking one up in Houston (12 hour drive) for 4K with no tooling. So yeah I’d probably buy that in a heartbeat
Yeah, I'll be sure to take a good look, and try everything out- if it appears rescraped I'll reassess- Hopefully I'm just lucky and it's just seen little use. I appreciate your pricing information. I'm not too far from you, and yeah, these don't come up much out here.

Looks like a nice mill. Price is at the high end for my location but we're swimming in used machines around here... Offer a little less and see what he says.
Great advice, and I'm going to take it. Based on some research, some soul search, and of course the great advice you guys helped me with, I made up my mind and made an offer. Dude might dismiss me as a lowballer, I'm completely prepared for that. He might counter. He might accept. If he accepts, I'm committed to rent the trailer, make the drive, and fork the cash.

I hope he does- I offered a price that was just a few hundred more than I wanted to pay, and a few hundred less than what he wanted to get. We'll have to wait and see!

Wish me luck, or at least a "you suck" if I get it, and if I do, a new thread will be born:

"Another Milling Noob Gets a Crusty old Bridgie that he has jack for knowledge about- Watch as he stumbles and blunders his way through overhaul and first cuts!"

Yeah, that sounds about right. You guys will enjoy watching me get in way over my head, which I will do, guaranteed!
 

JetMech

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#24
Well, the offer was accepted, and that mill is coming home with me. Of course, since I'm getting a deal, the guy's next question was, when will you be picking it up, because I won't be holding it long at that price. . .

So now it's time to:

-Rent a trailer
-Get some dunnage, 4x4 posts
-Buy a pinch bar
-Buy a pallet jack
-Learn whether the tie downs I have are sufficient, possibly buy more

I plan to get drop deck trailer that lowers for easy loading, and have the guy let me install some 4x4 wood blocks under the base, so when he sets it down with his forklift, I can later use the pallet jack to lift it and roll it off the trailer into my garage. I hope.

Trump is flying in to the airport where I work on Tuesday, so the place will be on lockdown. That might be a great day to just skip showing up althogether, and make a road trip. . .
 

projectnut

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#26
If you rent a drop bed trailer you won't need a pallet jack or much dunnage. I would lower the knee far enough to turn the head upside down then place a 6x6 block on the table and raise it to put a little pressure on the head. Then use a couple tie downs to make sure everything is solid. Using a pinch bar I would raise the base of the machine just enough to slip a few 1" diameter lengths of rod or pipe under it. Then use the bar to advance the machine on the rollers.

When going up or down the slight incline on the ramp I would attach a come along to the front of the trailer and to a lifting strap wrapped around the column of the machine. I use this system to load and unload both my Bridgeport mill and Sheldon Lathe. Attached are a couple pictures of loading and unloading the lathe. I never thought to take any pictures when doing the mill.

I had some help loading the lathe on the trailer, but I was on my own unloading it. I disassembled both machines by myself and carried most of the parts through the house down to the basement shop. The dolly wasn't tough enough to move the 1,000 lb. mill column, or the 800 lb. headstock end of the base of the lathe. I had to hire a local moving company to do those parts. It took 4 guys and a 1,700 lb. capable stair climber dolly 20 minutes to move each of those parts. I reassembled everything myself once the parts were in the shop.

DSC01010.JPG DSC01032.JPG DSC01034.JPG DSC01035.JPG
 

Chipper5783

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#27
Great job, way to go. Machines like this are very tippy (top heavy). Whether you flip the head, or not - I don't think it matters very much. Lower the knee and put a block of wood between the knee and the head (raise the knee enough to take some weight off the head). Lock all the slides. Yes, get more tie downs (heavy ones) and tie it at least 3x more than seems reasonable.
 

ttabbal

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#28
And take it slow. Getting in a rush will get someone hurt. Moving these things is a pain for someone who has never done it before.

Use a come-a-long or winch for any slopes, if it gets some speed you won't stop it yourself.

Congrats on the purchase and good luck with the move. It's worth the work.
 

JetMech

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#29
Congratulations !

If you're interested, here is how I moved a mill just about like your new BP. https://www.hobby-machinist.com/thr...load-on-your-truck-trailer.49747/#post-418695
I took a look, thanks for that link. I can't wait for pickup day, hopefully Tuesday! Hopefully I can get a trailer just like that one you used.

Great job, way to go. Machines like this are very tippy (top heavy). Whether you flip the head, or not - I don't think it matters very much. Lower the knee and put a block of wood between the knee and the head (raise the knee enough to take some weight off the head). Lock all the slides. Yes, get more tie downs (heavy ones) and tie it at least 3x more than seems reasonable.
Thanks! I wll be sure to bring wood for the head and remeber to lock the slides and tighten bolts. I got 4 of the heaviest rated 2 inchers I could find and I already have some other ones, and will get even more probably- they are cheap compared to really needing one or two more!

And take it slow. Getting in a rush will get someone hurt. Moving these things is a pain for someone who has never done it before.

Use a come-a-long or winch for any slopes, if it gets some speed you won't stop it yourself.

Congrats on the purchase and good luck with the move. It's worth the work.
I'm picking up a come along today, I would have yeterday but I used my 25% coupon on the pallet jack I purchased. I will go very slow. I got my 12x36 lathe out of a pickup bed and into this grarage myself, and yes, super slow going and checking 3 times for sanity before attempting any move.

The hardest part for me will be staying slow on the highway, but I will creep along if need be to get home safe!


I drew up a simple pallet for it and will build it tonight and get all the stuff together. If I can get a rental, I plan to get up super early on Tuesday and make the run.

Fellas, I appreciate all your encouragement and advice and I'll keep this updated throughout the move.
 

projectnut

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#30
Here's a picture from page 1-1 of the Bridgeport Installation, Operation and Maintenance manual. Note the head is upside down and blocked for shipping. This reduces the overall height by at least 2 feet, making it less top heavy and more stable.
1532349737063.png

Note the table is all the way to the rear and the knee is raised sufficiently to support the motor.

Here's a link to the manual:
http://hardingeus.com/usr/pdf/Knee Mills/SeriesIPartList4302Plus.pdf

On pages 1-4 and 1-5 it discusses proper lifting methods and floor mounting
 
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