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View Full Version : So it begins... I brought my new (used) mill home today.



lost_cause
02-03-2015, 08:44 PM
First off, I have to say that I couldn't imagine doing it myself, but my hat is off to those of you who live in Boston - or any metropolitan area that gets heavy snowfall. Truth be told, I really think you all must be crazy to do it. I live in a rural area and try to avoid going anywhere with lots of traffic, but today I did the ~450 mile round trip to bring home a milling machine.

As with pretty much everything I attempt, Murphy was my copilot today too, though he let me have a pretty reasonable trip. I started the day early with barely plowed roads and saw around 10 cars in the ditch, though almost all of them were single vehicle ones that looked to have been caused to by trying to stop fast and then ditching it to aviod hitting someone. There was one set of loose dual wheels rolled to a stop in the median that must have been interesting to see happen. The real eye opener was when I got about 35 miles from my destination and I found that I couldn't go across the Tobin bridge because they don't take cash for tolls. I had to take the last exit and before I was able to pull into a parking lot to rethink my route I made a turn that ended up routing me on some really narrow streets. Buildings packed in like sardines and seeing people trying to shovel out, but having nowhere to put the snow.

I just couldn't imagine living like that. I think I'd go crazy. years ago I worked in Atlanta, but there's no snow worry there, except one rare day every few years. I also spent a little time in Gateshead, England, and that's more cramped, but also pretty unlikely to see that much snow. I've been a bunch of other places too, but never wintered anywhere urban and had to deal with heavy snow, and today made me certain that I don't ever want to. I'll take the midle of nowhere any day and twice on Sunday - especially when there is snow to deal with.

But... back to the mill... I brought home the Millrite that I found on Craigslist last week. It's certainly going to need some work, but hopefully I don't find anything really bad that I didn't see already. it's a larger table model - 8 x 32 or 36 (I didn't put a tape on it to check yet). Here's what I know so far:

1. The x-axis seems pretty good, though it is missing the dial on one side.
2. The y-axis bearing holder is slightly afloat, but I'm hoping there's nothing terribly wrong back there. I can crank the table in and out, so I think it will be ok.
3. The spindle seems ok, but the motor sounds a bit gravely at startup - I'm betting dry bearings. Eventually the motor will need to be upgraded anyways, but for now it's single phase that I can plug in and go with. The housing for the motor is shimmed up with 1/8" packs in 3 spots to align the pulleys which seems odd. I'm betting that can be remedied somehow by adjusting a pulley.
4. The drawbar has had a new threaded end welded on. It looks to be a decent job, though I need to verify it is the correct length to get plenty of bite in the collets and chucks.
5. 3/4 of the table is pretty rusty. you can see where there was a vise on one side where it didn't rust. There are also a couple small dimples from something being dropped or hit near one edge of the table, and one 1/4" drill mark. the rust doesn't seem too thick, but I hope my judgement is good.
6. Someone "did me a favor" by greasing all the fittings, so it has to totally come apart to be cleaned, but I probably would have done that regardless.

It's the machine I wanted, but like everyone else, I would have liked it to be more pristine than it was. It would have also been great if it had a power feed attached, but I should be able to add that later. for now it's still strapped in the back of the truck sitting in the driveway. I've got a foot of snow to clean tomorrow before I think about unloading. The 225 mile return trip through the salt and crap spray aren't doing it any favors, but I'll have it unloaded and sprayed down tomorrow. I got a tarp somewhat over the head, but who knows how much that stopped. For now here's a couple photos I took with my phone before I hit the road for home:

http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_01_zps003351c4.jpg
http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_02_zps948b909f.jpg

edit: oh yeah, i forgot to mention this at first, but if anyone has good links to manuals or tear down tutorials for this i'd appreciate it. also, if any of you have opinions on whether the printed manuals sold on ebay are worth it, i'd like to know. i know there's a yahoo group for these that i'll check out too. since you can't tell because of the tarp, this one is a 1977 powermatic model.

darryl
02-03-2015, 09:45 PM
Just leave it on the truck. It's not that far to where I live (3, maybe 4000 miles or so) and you should be able to make it in 4 or 5 days. I'll even give you a hand unloading it. :)

A.K. Boomer
02-03-2015, 10:07 PM
So what size is that? looks like a 3/4 scale and if so you just gotta luv it for the HMS'er

good duty...

Rex
02-03-2015, 10:13 PM
That would be a 8x36 table.
And you got the extended knee for more Y travel. That's hard to find.

A.K. Boomer
02-03-2015, 10:50 PM
that's what my Jet is 8X36

really is a great size mill you have there.

lost_cause
02-03-2015, 11:21 PM
that's what my Jet is 8X36

really is a great size mill you have there.

thanks, it's pretty much exactly what i wanted. i was on the fence about a millrite because of the 7x27 table, and wasn't sure i'd be able to find one of the larger table variants. i didn't know anything about the knee variation, but the guy i got it from said something about that too. he really didn't know a lot about it either - said they'd mainly used it for drilling holes. i'll have to look into that once i get it inside. i was hoping for this or a 9x36 bridgeport, but a good portion of bridgeports were used heavily and pretty worn while millrites often spent more time sitting still. this thing shows neglect, but i don't think there is a massive amount of wear. time will tell once i get into it.

chipmaker4130
02-03-2015, 11:21 PM
You don't need to worry about the grease. Just oil from now on and the grease will work itself out quickly. It doesn't hurt anything while its in there either.

RichR
02-03-2015, 11:22 PM
Hi lost_cause
Is it the one I linked to in your other thread?
http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/threads/65856-me-machinery-and-murphy?p=964036#post964036

lost_cause
02-03-2015, 11:35 PM
Hi lost_cause
Is it the one I linked to in your other thread?
http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/threads/65856-me-machinery-and-murphy?p=964036#post964036

it is. i had found it prior to your post - it's the mill that prompted me to create that post in the first case. i wasn't sure if i'd ever be able to get down there because of the winter weather. i didn't want to directly point at what i was looking at for fear that someone else might become interested and have more time to go look at it. we're getting snow every other day, and with the cleanup winter is becoming a full time job. today was really a crappy day to go because there is still non stop road cleanup going on everywhere, but i didn't want to wait any longer and chance losing it. with only fuel stops plus looking and loading time it was over an 11 hour trip. i could have probably shaved an hour if i knew my way to get around the outside of boston, but i don't and i had no navigator today.

Mike Amick
02-03-2015, 11:50 PM
Great american made HSM there.

lots of info here on the yahoo group
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/BurkeMills/info

and some pics and info on part of my site
http://www.mikeamick.com/millrite_project/

Anyways .. nice goin

mattthemuppet
02-04-2015, 04:04 PM
congrats! You must be really pumped with your new mill, looks like it's just about the perfect size for a serious HSMer.

Texanjohn
02-04-2015, 05:44 PM
I also have a 1968 Millrite, it's a great "mini" Bridgeport, mine is torn down for a redo rite now so I'll be following your progress with much interest, Good luck with it, they really are perfect for the home machinist.

lost_cause
02-04-2015, 07:48 PM
after another day of snow cleanup i got a friend to come over with his tractor & used the forks to unload it and set it in my garage this afternoon. i couldn't leave well enough alone and had to start taking it apart. as i noted earlier, the bearing carrier for the y-axis screw was floating when i bought it, and i wasn't sure whether there was any damage anywhere, but after getting everything out it it all looks fine. the ball crank handle was rusted to the screw so i used a puller to pop it off & found that one screw was missing from the bearing carrier and the other two were loose.

after complete removal of the cross feed screw, everything looks good and the screw shows no visible sign of wear at all. i can't be sure about the cross feed nut, but i think it's ok. it is bolted to the saddle with two shiny stainless steel bolts, which is a dead giveaway that they were put on at the boat shop where i bought the mill. they didn't do much to care for the mill, so hopefully there are no deeper issues. tomorrow i'll get the table & saddle off and maybe the knee.

now that the mill is in my shop with heat, the grease that is everywhere is warming up and things turn a lot easier. the knee is still a little dry, but hopefully that will soften up with some cleaning. right now i'm at the point where i need to decide how far this is going to go. do i just pull it all apart, clean and reassemble, or do i go right to full blown rebuild and paint... so far i'm only missing the one dial wheel from the table, plus a few odd thumb screws and set screws, but those i can replace with anything. i've got to start looking for that dial wheel and i think i'm gong to keep an eye out for a couple of hand wheels to match the others and replace the two ball cranks. maybe tomorrow i'll get some more pictures.

JSR
02-05-2015, 08:48 AM
Millrite manual for a Burke, but should be the same as yours

http://www.neme-s.org/Shaper%20Books/millrite-manual1.pdf

John

Rosco-P
02-05-2015, 11:19 AM
Join the Burke Yahoo forum if you haven't already. Should prove to be a ready source of first hand information and possibly original parts.

lost_cause
02-05-2015, 01:10 PM
Join the Burke Yahoo forum if you haven't already. Should prove to be a ready source of first hand information and possibly original parts.

i went to do that last night and found that to sign up with yahoo first, you must (mandatory) supply them with a mobile phone number. i've had the same mobile number for the better part of two decades and i've given it out to many, many people, and i've rarely had any unsolicited calls. i feel certain that if i give it to yahoo it will either be sold to some other faceless entity that wants to market something to me, or else stolen in a security breach and sold to some unscrupulous entity that tries to steal from me.

maybe it's just me, and maybe i will think differently in a few days and sign up, but right now i'm unimpressed at this whole ordeal. i'm sure the bulk of the connected world loves this but i still prefer email to texting. i see no reason why they can't just just get by with either security questions or a phone number, but not both. i guess the problem is that they expect everyone to use their yahoo email and if they forget their password to log in it can't be sent to the email because they can't log in to get it. problem is that i already have multiple established emails and i could care less about theirs. i just want to see a couple yahoo groups.

Rosco-P
02-05-2015, 01:48 PM
i went to do that last night and found that to sign up with yahoo first, you must (mandatory) supply them with a mobile phone number. i've had the same mobile number for the better part of two decades and i've given it out to many, many people, and i've rarely had any unsolicited calls. i feel certain that if i give it to yahoo it will either be sold to some other faceless entity that wants to market something to me, or else stolen in a security breach and sold to some unscrupulous entity that tries to steal from me.

maybe it's just me, and maybe i will think differently in a few days and sign up, but right now i'm unimpressed at this whole ordeal. i'm sure the bulk of the connected world loves this but i still prefer email to texting. i see no reason why they can't just just get by with either security questions or a phone number, but not both. i guess the problem is that they expect everyone to use their yahoo email and if they forget their password to log in it can't be sent to the email because they can't log in to get it. problem is that i already have multiple established emails and i could care less about theirs. i just want to see a couple yahoo groups.

What do they do with the cell #? Is it for password recovery or to verify your not a robot registering to spam the group? If they don't specify a valid reason, register and flip two digits.

Puckdropper
02-05-2015, 02:44 PM
What do they do with the cell #? Is it for password recovery or to verify your not a robot registering to spam the group? If they don't specify a valid reason, register and flip two digits.

They claim it is for password recovery. They keep bugging me for it every time I log in. I haven't tried putting in an obviously fake number (they'd probably reject a 555 number), but you could try the number here: http://rejectionline.com/

George Bulliss
02-05-2015, 02:50 PM
I have a Yahoo account for several groups (The Burke group is one) and have never supplied the phone number. Can't remember what I did initially to get around it, but I do get notices now and then that it is required. I just click the "later" (or whatever it is) button and continue on. If it wasn't for the groups I would toss Yahoo in a second. Can't understand why they are still around.

lost_cause
02-05-2015, 10:02 PM
yeah, i'm not real impressed with this, but it seems it is the way of the world now. i think back to the good old days when people got disposable email accounts from the likes of google and yahoo so they didn't have to expose their real mail addresses to questionable people and sites. apparently now i need to get a disposable cell phone to protect my real phone in order to get a disposable email to protect my real email... what's the world coming to?

but anyways... more snow removal today so nothing got done. i did take a couple pictures tonight of how things looked when i stopped last night. nothing special really - just a few removed handles & cross feed screw. it's still in the "getting worse" phase right now. hopefully by the end of the week i will have it mostly down to its pieces and then next week i can start cleaning and de-rusting and decide whether any paint will be applied.

http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_03_zps4a4a6d7d.jpg

http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_04_zpse68e06db.jpg

oh yeah... what's the ideal size vise for this mill? i've got a 4" on my rf-30 which has an 8"+ wide table, but there have been times when i'd like a little more size. i get the feeling that a 6" would just be way too big. maybe a 5"? but there aren't many choices for good 4" or 5" vises out there and used are really scarce too. for now i'll use the 4" import vise from the rf-30, but once the millrite is done the rf-30 is going up for sale so i'll have to find something else.

Mike Amick
02-05-2015, 11:16 PM
I have the same table as you, and a six inch fits fine.

Mister ED
02-08-2015, 05:12 PM
Nice find. I have a pretty similar Jet 8x36 (had been looking for a MR for a long time). Like you I had a 4" vice on my RF-30. My Jet came with what I believe is a 6" and it is fine.

lost_cause
02-10-2015, 07:56 PM
after yet another round of snow cleanup i tackled a little more of the mill teardown. i took the knee off tonight and so far that has been the most difficult part. this is only because i couldn't get my motor crane to lift high enough. i got the knee up so that there was only about 3" of overlap on the dovetails and that's all it would go. i set it down and took the short chain and hook off the crane and bolted my lifting chain directly to the boom and just barely got it the rest of the way off. i also had to do this with the boom extended all the way out, but the legs were not extended because they were hitting the pallet. i put some small diameter pipes inside the crane legs and brought them up over the pallet so it wouldn't tip the crane over.

i plan on doing the reassembly in the final location of the mill so i shouldn't have that problem then. also, the lack of the pallet will hopefully give me less trouble with the crane lifting height. i need to tear the jack apart and see if i can fix whatever is causing the lack of lift issue. i think there may be water (20-30 years of moisture) in the jack and pump that is causing problems.

the one good thing about the previous owner(s) greasing the mill is that i have good evidence of the work it has done. pretty much all the filings and chips stuck in the grease are aluminum and brass, so it looks like the mill has not had too much of a workout. all three screws show absolutely no visual wear, and the ways are mostly rusty or lightly dinged. so far no real hidden damage. i have found some casting faults in the machined ways on the table and saddle. at first i thought they were rust spots, but there isn't a corresponding rust spot on the mating piece,and a couple of them are pretty deep, so i'm pretty sure they are defects in the castings. it really surprises me that they let stuff like that go, but i guess since you have contact across the entire length of the saddle that a few bad spots don't matter. i'm going to try taking pictures of them eventually, but so far i'm just snapping a few shots here and there with my phone's camera before i head in for the evening, and the photo quality isn't that good.

speaking of poor quality photos, here's the latest installment:

http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_05_zpsb5e1760a.jpg
http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_06_zps397004ea.jpg
http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_07_zpsb3c03e6a.jpg
http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_08_zpsebae5a92.jpg
http://i908.photobucket.com/albums/ac286/lost_cause_photos/Millrite/millrite_09_zpsb487a1d0.jpg