View Full Version : Tramming, Sweeping, Indicating....Which one???

12-24-2010, 06:48 PM
Why are there 3 words that mean the same thing?

Do you indicate your mill head in or do you tram it in or do you sweep it in? Over the past 30+ years I have heard many different people say any one of these. How do so many different terms get started that all mean the same thing.

12-24-2010, 06:55 PM
Good Lord, this is going to be a long thread when Australia wakes up :)
Gary, judging by your posts in the "Shop Made Tools" thread, you're a fantastic machinist -- is this a rhetorical question?

"Tramming" is adjusting the milling head so the spindle is perpendicular to the milling table in the X- and Y planes.

That's normally done by sweeping an indicator mounted in the spindle across the milling table, but you can also tram by indicating off a cylindrical square, or probably a dozen other ways ;)

Dr Stan
12-24-2010, 08:04 PM
Do you indicate your mill head in or do you tram it in or do you sweep it in?

If the head ends up square with the table does it really matter?

Personally I call it tramming, but the other terms are just as legit.

12-24-2010, 08:16 PM
I Vacuum mine as well as sweep. It gets most of the little bits!:)


12-24-2010, 08:44 PM
If the machine is a column type mill then column perpendicularity with the table and parallelism with the spindle need to be considered at the same time you are tramming the spindle. There's not much point in a trammed head if the column it rides on is tilted.

12-24-2010, 11:21 PM
I tram my mill by sweeping with an indicator.
Yeah, I know it ain't pretty, but it sure was cheep!