Moderators: Random Orbital Bob, nev, Noel, Charley, CHJ

By chaoticbob
Farmer Giles wrote:It does look like it needs more than a little maintenance but if you keep looking the ones that are sound but need not much more than a light derust and grease do turn up.

Encouraging - I'm in the market for a bigger mill myself, so quite interested to see how this goes. I did get an as new Nilfisk M-class industrial extractor off eBay for £100 once because the guy had listed it under domestic vacs, so there are bargains out there to be had if you're lucky!

Cheers, Rob
By -Matt-
DTR wrote:as an apprentice I mostly used an Adcock & Shipley horizontal. I preferred it over the verticals that we also used.

Place I used to work used to have an A&S 2E with a vertical head, had all the gubbins to slide the top bit back across and use as a horizontal too, although we never did as it was only ever used for simple work. I once spent 3 days just making glazing bars on it, all replicating a Victorian cast iron conservatory we were restoring.
By MusicMan
Arboga and Harrison are two other names to look for. I have an Arboga and it would do all the operations necessary in model making and then more.

You will get better value and performance out of a three phase machine but of course have to buy a converter. These are much cheaper if the motor says something like 240/415V on it rather than just 415V. (Which the Arboga is).
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Rhyolith wrote:Is there any particular benefit to verticals? or is it just personal preference?

They are generally easier to set the work up on, especially for drilling / boring holes or milling enclosed slots. If you're comfortable using a typical pillar drill then you'll probably find a vertical mill is quite intuitive.

Horizontals can fit huge cutting tools, and take a huge bite to match. That's great in an industrial setting where time is money, but not as useful for the home engineer. That's why verticals are overwhelmingly more common in small machines.
By TFrench
The first one looks good - horizontal and vertical heads. The centec is the mk1 I think with the motor out to the side. Mine is on the original base that houses the motor as well. Its a much neater and more compact system. I saw a vertical head for one the other day on ebay, can't remember what it went for though.
By chaoticbob
Rhyolith wrote:Found a couple on eBay that seem quite small: ... 1438.l2649 ... 1438.l2649

Either of these the sort of thing I should be looking for?

They both look nice, and (at the mo) well priced too. I'd agree that a vertical mill is more versatile - in theory you can do the same things, slower or faster, on either. It comes down to what you do most. It's difficult to know what machinery you need unless you have a a cut and dried plan for what you want to make though . My own journey in metal mangling started with a pretty vague idea that I wanted a lathe to - well make stuff! As I went on and became more ambitious I realised that I was grinding to a halt because I was putting off manually hacksawing a lump off a 3" steel bar - I'll do that tomorrow. And tomorrow. So I bought a metal cutting bandsaw which has now become an essential tool. I didn't see that coming!
Might it be best for you to start something you want to make on your lathe, then when you come up to a brick wall decide what machine you need make progress? It's frustrating at first because you have to wait, but over time you'll build a set of machines/accessories/tooling which meets your particular need.
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By Rhyolith
Found another one, this time really near me! Would be grateful for some thoughts again as to me this looks like exactly what I want. ... Ciid%253A1

My principle concern is moving it. Apparently it weighs 1/5 a ton! How do I move something like that?
By TFrench
That looks like an excellent piece of kit to me! An engine crane would easily lift that - I imagine you can hire one from somewhere, failing that they aren't earth shatteringly expensive. Kept vertical the weight is high up but it keeps the oil from running out of gearboxes etc. Make sure its well strapped down!
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By Rhyolith
Well I went and bought it, 907kg of milling machine for £750 :shock:

ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr
ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr
ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr
ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr
ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr

Its 1940s - 50s and apparently a high grade machine (thanks DTR for finding that)

Spent most of today getting into my workshop with the help of the local farmer and the seller, never moved something this heavy before! Think I have slightly shocked myself by purchasing something so ridiculously large and heavy.

Its really quite dirty so I have started cleaning it up with paraffin... turns out its battleship grey under the dirt not black as I thought it was :lol:

The Dirt:
ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr

Will post pictures of the clean machine when I finish... think it will look quite the part!

Something that crossed my mind already is lubcrication. It was and inbuilt oiling system for the bed (possible other bits too, but thats the bit thats been taking apart so far), a resource on top (not sure if this is for the oiling system. I assume it is), an oil feeder (like on the bigger Myfords) also on top and several large oil holes with screw caps. What sort of oil should I put in these? Is the engine oil I use for the Myford ok? Its also covered in grease nipples, will probably need to snatch the next grease gun I see at the car boot. What sort of grease should I use?

I found the original suppliers badge hidden under the dirt, anyone know them? Have not looked the name up yet.

ImageHenry Milnes Milling Machine by Rhyolith, on Flickr

It runs nicely, though I have not fathomed how the gears work yet.

A nice bonus feature is the powered bed, think it can go both ways horizontal and up under power. I didn't need this, but it might save some effort :mrgreen:

My next thought is what do I need to get it functional. I came with several huge cutters (forgot to photograph those) all will massive morse tapers which screw in at the top of the machine, I am thinking some kind of collet attachment for smaller (and cheaper) bits might be a good idea? Also any good places to get bits from and any good ones for a beginner?