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Disastrous Day!

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jo-53

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Today a large length of oak I was thicknessing fell onto my wadkin BOAS. It must have hit the fence, which dug into the cutter block and everything came to a very sudden stop. Most importantly no-one was hurt, but... a large lump of the cutter block with the blade still attached has sheared off, the edge of the feed in table has disintegrated, and a lug underneath holding the rise and fall mechanism, sheared off, and part of the casting holding the fence arm has sheared also. Everything else seems ok, and the motor ran ok when I checked it.
Has anyone any ideas about the possibility of welding the cast iron lugs back on, and would it be possible to rebuild the edge of the infeed table? Then the next thing is to source another cutter block.
Any advice/ help would be greatly appreciated!

Forgot to add my name! still in shock!
Jo
 

chunkolini

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For a change the word disasterous is not being misused.
Welding cast iron? I would guess unlikely it is a very specialised welding job espcially if it is load bearing.
Did you lapse into profanity or was it a silent word free disaster?
 

jo-53

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Total silence, including the motor!

I have been researching cast iron welding since and it seems possible. I will be trying local welding shops/engineers. But wether it is economically viable is another matter.

jo
 

tomatwark

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I think the damage sounds to big to repair for reasonable price, when can pick a BAOS up on ebay for under £1000.

I would be tempted to see if you can find a tired looking one on ebay an build one out of the 2 and sell any bits left over as spares.

Wadkin still carry a lot of the bits for these but the prices are going to be high.


Tom
 

Cheshirechappie

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Jo,

Very sorry to read about the BAOS, but I'm glad nobody suffered injury. I can well imagine the horrible sinking feeling in the pit of the stomach - I had that once when I ran into the back of another car. Not nice, and you have my sympathy.

As to cast iron welding, I have some knowledge as I'm a professional mechanical engineer with a fair bit of experience as a volunteer in railway preservation, mostly on locomotive rebuilding, so I've met it once or twice. It is possible, but it's difficult to do well. There are some companies about that specialise, but they're not cheap because the process is time-consuming. It's only really economically viable to repair items that would be very costly to replace, such as very large pump casings. If the weld is done on a component with a machined surface, the job has to be either re-machined after welding, or dressed very carefully by grinding afterwards. The load-bearing capacity of the component is also probably diminished. It wouldn't be advisable to use cast-iron welding to 'build up' a degraded edge such as the infeed table, because of the danger of bits crumbling off in service - obviously, being right over the cutter block, the result could be ballistic.

There are quite a lot of people who say they can weld (or braze) cast iron, but unless it's done properly (good preparation, pre-heat, the right filler, careful cooling after welding) the results can be very hit and miss. I wouldn't risk it on anything that close to a rotating cutter-block unless it's done by a skilled, competent and experienced welder with a lot of CI practice.

It sounds as if the damage is fairly extensive, so the man-hours to repair properly will quite probably exceed the machine's value even if they are judged possible to start with. It's not so much the weld, it's getting everything to line up afterwards that could take the time, and require some patient and skilled work by a good machine tool fitter.

Sorry to be the bringer of bad tidings, but it may be best to cut your losses and replace the machine.
 

PMK54

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Back in the late 1970s I worked for a company that manufactured porcelain. One of their machines was an old filter press which had a cast iron frame. One day the frame of that filter cracked which stopped production. The maintenance guy looked at the damage, declared it beyond his ken, but got straight on the phone to a welding company. Their guy arrived a few hours later with the correct kit and without batting an eyelid re-welded the frame. So I believe it would be wise to call the experts in and let them apply their expertise. My instinct if they say 'at your own risk guvnor' is kick them out and go the the next expert too.

I think Mr Cheshirechappie gives a good explanation...
 

beech1948

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I suggest a few first steps.
1) Many of the above comments are true but are from a professional viewpoint only. That is commercial and money centric. They are right (ish) but its not the whole story.

2) Go visit www.owwm.com . Its a US web site that is made up of guys who rescue, restore and refurbish old iron...mostly cast iron from 1850's to 1950. There are frequest stories about the welding of cast iron, the methods used, the likelyhood of success. and the ways and means to get it done. It may be a US site but it is applicable to the UK. You will have to search for the cast iron welding bits but don't be surprised to find several hundred message streams returned by the search.

3) Go find a local(ish) welding shop. Look for somewhere that is more old fashioned, dirty and full of guys who are in their 50's and 60's. Start talking about welding cast iron, brazing. Remember to ask about pre-heating and the types of welding and welding rods.

I think that it is possible to achieve a repair.
How about some photo's so we can see what the damage really is.

regards
Alan
 

Karl

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Somebody over on the other side had a cracked piece off their outfeed table and had it stitched back on.



Hope he doesn't mind me borrowing his pic.

Cheers

Karl
 

kirkpoore1

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You're lucky nobody was hurt. That being said, you do have a challenge ahead of you even besides replacing the cutterhead. I think your lug can be welded. I've had a few cast iron parts welded, and if your welder knows what he's doing, it can be done. Alan is right--find somebody local, bring in the parts, and ask them what they think. Point out any critical alignment issues. OWWM.ORG (not the .COM--that's a machine index) is your friend in this--there are discussions on what to think about and different methods to use. Don't tell the welder what to do, but try to be up to speed on the terminology and the options so you know what he's talking about.

And when you go to OWWM, have pictures ready (you'll need to make a couple of post before you can show the pics, though, to get past the spam filters). They'll be able to give you an idea of whether it will be an easy or hard fix.

Kirk
 

jo-53

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Thanks for all the replies.
I have started out trying to solve the cutterblock problem first, as that seemed the most intractable. I have spent the morning on the phone with the following results:- Wadkin can have a new tersa block made at upwards of £1000, - unfortunately that's out, they also said that there were many differences in sizes and the mounting pin, which is part of the casting, might not be compatible in a 2nd hand part. During the next few hours I couldn't find one anyway.
As Alan said I found info on USA sites talking about welding cast iron, and have got as far as joining a uk welding forum. The advice about the older oily gentlemen is definitely gold!
Some good news is that someone has just phoned me back with a possible cutterblock for £200, and an infeed table for£100, also saying that they have never heard of blocks being different sizes. I now need to check for any other damage.I took the belts off to check the motor the pulleys and chain moved fine and it was v quiet without the cutterblock, so I assume that's ok.The only other item not broken that has suffered is the fence which may have a bit of a bend. Any suggestions about anything else I should check before I start off down the repair road would be gratefully received. I don't want it to cost more than another machine, but I happened to spend most of last year rebuilding it as it had got rusted in storage. It's also single phase.
I'm off now to have a look and take some pics which I shall try and post later.

Thanks Jo
 

Digit

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CI welding was a daily job in many factories in the days before MIG welding made a take over, the rods were Stainless steel, cylinder blocks were welded, machines were welded as well. The picture above shows that the piece has been stitched.
Ask around your local engineering companies, the local technical school is also a good starting point.

Roy.
 

Bluekingfisher

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Sorry to hear of the damage to the machine, a bit of a heart breaker for you when it happened I assume.

I've been racking my brains but what is a BAOS?? .................sorry it's late and I've had a long day so the old grey matter is slowing down a bit.

Anyway, I wish you lick with it and not too costly either
 

jo-53

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Sorry for the delay, but my workshop is 10 miles from home, and I just lost my last post trying to add pics! trying again.
Although it is hard to let go of my current machine I have to be pragmatic, and so am looking into the option of buying another old machine. I have come across a couple at £850 but both, ( and I suspect most around) are 3 phase, would changing over the motors be an easy swap?
I have got in touch with a local welder who said he has had some success (and some failure) at ci welding, and will see him next week. Re Alan's post I hope he's old and dirty enough! (I've got to find something to laugh about)

About what BOAS stands for, I have come across a thread about it in the past, but didn't read it.

Fingers crossed, adding pics now.
Jo
 

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kirkpoore1

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I think the fence attachment bracket can be fixed fairly easily. As for the cutterhead: Ouch! A replacement is going to cost you. Well, it's the perfect opportunity to go with one of the carbide insert heads, I guess.



Table edge could probably be built up with weld material, then ground flat. Or you could just round off the rough spots and leave it as is.


I think this one is a fairly easy fix also, from what I've seen done before. Mind you, I don't weld, so "easy" is based on what I've heard other folks say.


Kirk
 

dickm

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Have welded CI successfully a couple of times, but am no expert. However, I'd go with Kirk's diagnosis, except to emphasise that NO WAY would it be safe to weld the cutter block. Even if it's a brilliant weld, the metallurgical changes in the block could allow fatigue fracture and all that that might lead to.
The other breaks look to me to be potentially, and safely, weldable.
 

kirkpoore1

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dickm":2txyximq said:
Have welded CI successfully a couple of times, but am no expert. However, I'd go with Kirk's diagnosis, except to emphasise that NO WAY would it be safe to weld the cutter block. Even if it's a brilliant weld, the metallurgical changes in the block could allow fatigue fracture and all that that might lead to.
The other breaks look to me to be potentially, and safely, weldable.
I was only saying the bracket could be fixed. There is no way to fix that cutterhead--I hope I didn't give that impression. It will have to be replaced.

Kirk
 

dickm

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kirkpoore1":wu9rq0xr said:
I was only saying the bracket could be fixed. There is no way to fix that cutterhead--I hope I didn't give that impression. It will have to be replaced.
Sorry - I know you were NOT suggesting the cutterhead could be fixed, but thought extra emphasis might still be a good idea.
 

jo-53

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Thanks Kirk and Dick for your replies, glad you think welding repairs are possible. No, as you say, no way could the cutter block be welded.
My next problem is removing the cutter block from the mounts and bearings. I saw a post somewhere last year by someone who had done a fantastic job on restoring their BOAS, which encouraged me to have a go at mine, but removing the cutter block, involved drifting it off the bearings as I recall, and heating the block and/or bearings in the oven to re-assemble. This seemed too daunting to me, and I didn't go that far. I haven't been able to find the site again.
Now I just have to get on with it, but so far my circlip pliers have not been man enough to get the circlip off, so I better get some new pliers. Should I be replacing the bearings as a matter of course? they seem to be ok, and I don't really want to if it's not necessary. Any advice will be most welcome.
 
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