View Full Version : Vise for Atlas 7B Shaper

10-15-2003, 06:49 AM
Greetings all,
I'm the 3rd (or nth) owner of an Atlas 7B shaper - it's in very good condition, no missing parts, runs smoothly, etc. The fellow I bought it from did not have the original Atlas vise and told me these are extremely rare. After several days of searching eBay and going to numerous shaper discussion groups (lurking) I realize it's very doubtful I'll be able to find an original vise. So I'll be looking to buy a used vise (or a new one if the price is right); before I spend any money I wanted to get some opinions from the resident experts on this forum on a good, relatively light-weight (less than 20 lbs) milling machine vise. The original vise had a swivel base so a workpiece could be set to a specific angle; I'd like to find a non-original vise with this same feature. Any comments would be appreciated.

Al Messer
10-15-2003, 11:30 AM
The Yahoo Shaper forum has a discussion about this vise going on now even as we speak.

10-15-2003, 01:08 PM
I wanted a vise for mine, and looked at tha palmgren vises.

I eventually bought another 7B mostly to get the vise that was on it. It was cheaper than buying a new Palmgren.

10-15-2003, 05:54 PM
Thankee Al, Oso,
I'll hie myself over to the shaper forum and see whereof they speak. I've looked at Palmgren prices and most of their vises cost more than I spent on this shaper.

10-15-2003, 06:02 PM
Bison makes a self-centering vise that is far better.

10-16-2003, 05:40 AM
Thankee Thrud,
A fellow by the name of Art on the Yahoo shaper forum pointed the way to a really neat do-it-yourself project making a good swiveling vise for a shaper. It looks like a really fun project and a very good vise. I think I'll still do a google on the Bison vises and check out prices as there are some projects which I'd like to start on which require a vise NOW. I hope you've gotten some relief on your "red-out".

Ragarsed Raglan
10-16-2003, 07:57 AM
What you have to remember is that these shaper vices were 'low-line' designs, it would use up a lot of valuable head room to use a regular milling vice on a shaper, especially one as dinky as a 7B.

I think you need to get on the Yahoo Atlas milling and shaper forum, there's a guy there Harprit Sandhu in the Chicago area getting some replica castings made for the vice main components. I've enquired about a fixed jaw base for mine from him, as before I got my 7B someone had decided it would make a neat drill press vice! Not that it looks like a piece of Swiss cheese mind you!!

Are you rebuilding the machine Guero? If so what mods are you doing? I had to re-machine all the major ways to cure a 'Banana Ram' syndrome and clean up the table jacking ways that had deep seated pitting on them (mine had stood for 30 years unused)


10-16-2003, 12:36 PM
For a low vise machine two bars tight in T slot cut one in short pieces with clamp screws out the side to push on the part,these may be on a slight angle down.


10-16-2003, 01:17 PM
The cheapest way out is to just use a table strip and toe dogs to hold the work.

I did that until getting the vise (with extra shaper attached). Worked fine, and in some ways was nicer. The work was right down on the table. And the table strip assures alinement positively, which the vise does not.

That said, now that I have the vise I don't want to go back....some things are just convenient as heck, and a vise is one.

The Atlas vise is indeed very low, under 3" if I recall correctly. I am in the process of making a derivative vise design based on it for a small mill.

Ragarsed Raglan
10-16-2003, 02:22 PM

Just noticed this whilst reading another thread:-


These look to be very 'lowline', very similar to the original Atlas 2 1/2" wide and 2" opening may be a little on the small side but maybe it would get you started.


10-16-2003, 05:40 PM
I haven't decided yet whether I'll do a rebuild on it or not; right now I have it dismantled to the point where only the main column still contains machinery (bull gear, rod, acuating screw, etc.). The table is in pretty good shape and as I don't have a real straight edge I'm going to carry the "knee" ways over to a machine shop in the area and put a straight edge on the ways there. They've told me they would be happy to grind the ways if necessary. Mainly what this shaper needs is some cosmetic work - it has at least 3 coats of paint on it and I have been giving thought to bead-blasting everything (while protecting the ways) and then priming and painting it. I'm a member of the Yahoo shaper forum and I'll do a google on Mr. Sandhu - this sounds like it would be a neat permanent solution to the problem.

Oso, I appreciate the idea on the strips and table dogs. I'm familiar with the concept but it certainly had not occurred to me. Until I get a vise (one way or another) this will be the method I'll use. I appreciate the help from you all.