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Has anyone ever seen a Startrite drill head elevating mechanism?

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RichardG

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I bought a Startrite Mercury that had sat unused in the corner of a local forge for many years. It’s absolutely filthy but is a 10 speed model so doesn’t have the bent shaft issue of the 5 speed versions. The issues it does have are: the table is missing, there is a chip in the motor pulley, it’s 3 phase. The 3 phase and motor pulley is not an issue as I’ll fit an inverter which will make it variable speed and together with the high/low gear will give me plenty of speed choices. Sorry waffling, the question I have is in the manual there is an optional head elevating mechanism.
BD6AB02C-DB6D-4E29-B798-4C7402EA123C.jpeg
I would actually prefer this a solution rather than finding a table but would have to make one. I think this was probably targeted at the multi head drills? I was wondering if anyone had ever seen or used one or even better has a photo so I could see how it works and attaches to the drill?

For info I paid £75 for it.
 
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samhay

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Startrite made a 'Bantam' model, which is a Mercury with a shorter column and no table. I have one of these.
I looked briefly for the same head elevating mechanism, but didn't find anything. I then found that after cleaning/refurbing the machine and waxing the column, it's not especially difficult to raise the head by lifting it.
However, if that's not to your likes, you could put a bottle or scissor jack under the motor and lift it that way.

Of course, if you find a source of the lifting mechanism, I would love one too...
 

RichardG

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I’ve used a Bantam and that was my initial thoughts but I hadn’t realised how much higher the body is with the 10 speed gearbox fitted. The column is 10 inches higher than the standard Mercury which is 6 inches higher than the Bantum plus is 4kg heavier. I think this will make it a hard lift plus after a recent wheat intolerance I can no longer have my Weetabix:oops:

I have seen a Fobco where the owner had installed a pulley at the top with a lead counter weight which made the drill easy to move up and down, that’s another option.
 

samhay

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Yes, it will be difficult to lift if the head is relatively high already. Sounds like you need a mechanical solution.
I've seen a pulley and a counterweight in the column too. It's a neat solution if you have enough column height above the head (I don't) and can either make the pulley swivel or do away with the option of swinging the head around the column (which I do quite regularly).

Another option would be to find a new table. Doesn't have to be a startrite table, just something that will fit the column diameter.
 

Terrytpot

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I have a similar issue with my Meddings pillar drill...the table is VERY heavy but my particular model precedes the age of fitting rack and pinion mechanisms and even though I've made frequent digital hunts for a solution from a newer drill or a "fixer upper" going cheap , my table remains fixed about a foot below the chuck awaiting an easy means of elevating/lowering it.
 

TFrench

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I fitted a table and elevating rack off a scrap clarke pillar drill to my mercury. Worked a treat.
 

Sandyn

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I have a similar issue with my Meddings pillar drill...the table is VERY heavy but my particular model precedes the age of fitting rack and pinion mechanisms and even though I've made frequent digital hunts for a solution from a newer drill or a "fixer upper" going cheap , my table remains fixed about a foot below the chuck awaiting an easy means of elevating/lowering it.
The Meddings table is a beast. The only way I could think of getting it adjustable was to have some mechanism between the base and the bottom of the table. I converted an old scissors jack to a 17mm hex drive and tried a crude system to see if it was feasible. The table tended to coggle on the shaft, it rotated, the idea just didn't work, so back to moving it manually, but with the quill travel. I haven't needed to move it often. I have a small tray on the shaft below the table. I use that as a safety stop when moving. If you ever find anything, I would be very interested.
 

Sandyn

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I bought a Startrite Mercury that had sat unused in the corner of a local forge for many years. It’s absolutely filthy but is a 10 speed model so doesn’t have the bent shaft issue of the 5 speed versions. The issues it does have are: the table is missing, there is a chip in the motor pulley, it’s 3 phase. The 3 phase and motor pulley is not an issue as I’ll fit an inverter which will make it variable speed and together with the high/low gear will give me plenty of speed choices. Sorry waffling, the question I have is in the manual there is an optional head elevating mechanism.
View attachment 97342
I would actually prefer this a solution rather than finding a table but would have to make one. I think this was probably targeted at the multi head drills? I was wondering if anyone had ever seen or used one or even better has a photo so I could see how it works and attaches to the drill?

For info I paid £75 for it.
If that is a bevel gear with internal thread on the left part of the bevel gear and a threaded shaft If the lower part is fixed to the shaft, as you crank the handle the threaded shaft would go up, or down. This would move the top bit up and down. The top bit would be mounted below the table and move it, then the table clamped off?? perhaps?? actually a good retro fit for any drill with a similar problem!
 

RichardG

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If that is a bevel gear with internal thread on the left part of the bevel gear and a threaded shaft If the lower part is fixed to the shaft, as you crank the handle the threaded shaft would go up, or down. This would move the top bit up and down. The top bit would be mounted below the table and move it, then the table clamped off?? perhaps?? actually a good retro fit for any drill with a similar problem!
Once I have the drill cleaned and running via an inverter I’m certainly going to try and make something. Bevel gears can be found for £5, a thrust bearing, a threaded rod and a welded frame to fit on the drill shaft to hold the gears and handle. Doesn’t sound too hard. I could also use a linear actuator and have it motorised!
637FD913-088B-4731-A951-1F2E14DBBBA4.jpeg

However, as I strip down the drill I‘m also going to need a new Chuck, the current one is much more chewed up than I thought. The front pulley is split so it will definitely be an 8 speed now.
 

Sandyn

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I wondered if it might be better to put the winding mechanism above the table and have a threaded rod down with a 'nut' fixed to the table bracket in some way. That way, you are using gravity to your advantage. It's better to pull the table up and have gravity assist you on the way down. That keeps threaded rod in tension and straight.
 

RichardG

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I wondered if it might be better to put the winding mechanism above the table and have a threaded rod down with a 'nut' fixed to the table bracket in some way. That way, you are using gravity to your advantage. It's better to pull the table up and have gravity assist you on the way down. That keeps threaded rod in tension and straight.
Don’t forget I’m looking to move the drill head and not the table but that is a fair point. I’ll probably knock a prototype up in wood first using a right angle drill to drive the thread and see how it works.
 

KingAether

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Commenting as im curious to see how this pans out, my meddings i can deal with but the kerry super 8 is to heavy for comfort. I to have spent a bunch of time looking for an answer but not found anything that seems worth the effort yet
 

RichardG

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My first thought was to copy’s the rack and pinion design but that would mean cutting a slot in the casting, on a solid cast drill head that wouldn’t bother me but the open casting design of the Startrite is making me think that it isn’t such a good idea. However, you may be able on the Kerry.

3896B4F3-009E-4FB8-8C69-BCF2E41B36AC.jpeg
F0364808-936E-4FF9-B8A6-BBA5A71E0C67.jpeg
 

TFrench

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Can I ask why you want to move the head around so much? With a moving table you almost never need to touch it. With the table locked off you can use the quill to push the head up the column so you aren't wrestling it.
 

RichardG

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Can I ask why you want to move the head around so much? With a moving table you almost never need to touch it. With the table locked off you can use the quill to push the head up the column so you aren't wrestling it.
The drill came without a table, so I either find a table or move the head. I like the idea of moving the head after using one of the new Bosch drills, it seems a better solution as it allows you to use the whole bench as a support when drilling long pieces...
 
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