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Thread: gear cutting tools

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
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    Question gear cutting tools

    1) Who sells a decent selection of vertical mill gear cutting tools (not hobs)? Or - who sells them at all??? Looking for metric as well as inch.

    2) I am going to be purchasing a mill soon (and dividing head assuming a rotary table won't be accurate enough for gear cutting) - it seems from reading recent posts that the Grizzly machines are decent?

  2. #2
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    Apr 2001
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    Post

    Several companies sell gear cutters; MSC (http://www.mscdirect.com) is probably the most well-known although others may have a better selection, I'm not sure.

    A rotary table would be perfectly adequate for use in cutting gears, although it may be somewhat inconveient to set up the work. You need to "somehow" hold the gear blank so you can get at it with the gear cutter, and on a rotary table that may take some imagination. You would also need a rotary table that can be set vertically (a horizontal/vertical model). A dividing head would probably be a lot easier to use, but a rotary table would certainly be accurate enough for anything you're likely to be doing.

    I've never seen a Grizzly mill; I have seen Jet, and think they are pretty good. I have seen Enco, and I am unimpressed.
    ----------
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    Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
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  3. #3
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    Mar 2001
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    Post

    If you are going to do any serious gear cutting you really need a dividing head and a horizontal mill, a verticl mill isn't ridgid enuff and is going to be a pain to setup. The arbor in a vertical mill doesn't have any support on the outboard end allowing it to flex. For very light ocassional work you can do it but if you have very many to do a horizontal is the only way to go,,

  4. #4
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    <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Ben Shank:
    If you are going to do any serious gear cutting you really need a dividing head and a horizontal mill, a verticl mill isn't ridgid enuff and is going to be a pain to setup. The arbor in a vertical mill doesn't have any support on the outboard end allowing it to flex. For very light ocassional work you can do it but if you have very many to do a horizontal is the only way to go,,</font>
    Don't forget though that Bridgeport do a horizontal attachment for their verticals.
    Chances are it also fits the clones.



    ------------------
    Regards,
    John Stevenson,
    Nottingham, England
    .

    Sir John , Earl of Bligeport & Sudspumpwater. MBE [ Motor Bike Engineer ] Nottingham England.




  5. #5
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    Mar 2001
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    Post

    John,
    You could probably buy horizontal over here cheaper than you could buy a Bridgeport attachment, if you could find one. Just my $.02 worth

  6. #6
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    Mar 2001
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    Ben,
    I was just making a point. I fully agree that a horizontal is far better but I was just trying to point out an alternative bearing in mind that most people have a space problem and may have a vertical mill already.
    We have J&L in the UK as you do, they often list these as specials for about 250 UKP, thats about $360. Possibly a lot to spend but taking something like distance and shipping in the US even a free horizontal will possibly cost the same.
    Another plus that a lot of people don't realise with the horizontal attachment is that it's actually a right angle drive and will take the standard R8 collets. Very handy if you need to work on the side of large pieces.

    ------------------
    Regards,
    John Stevenson,
    Nottingham, England
    .

    Sir John , Earl of Bligeport & Sudspumpwater. MBE [ Motor Bike Engineer ] Nottingham England.




  7. #7
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    Mar 2001
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    Post

    John,
    I agree that the attachment is a nice thing to have and if one is short on space or just wants all the gadgets that came with the mill it's nice to have. But seeing manual horizontals selling at auctions for less than $100.00 us, they are dirt cheap right now.

  8. #8
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    <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Ben Shank:
    John,
    I agree that the attachment is a nice thing to have and if one is short on space or just wants all the gadgets that came with the mill it's nice to have. But seeing manual horizontals selling at auctions for less than $100.00 us, they are dirt cheap right now.
    </font>
    Ben,
    AGAIN I'm not stating that one is better than the other - just pointing out alternatives.
    Hell if you have the room go for it. They are real work horses. I have a Victoria U2, bed size about the same a Bridgeport. I make toolholders for North Sea oil rig boring tools. This machine puts a 7/8"wide by 7/8" deep slot in the holder in one pass.
    As regards cost though work out the full cost. Take the auction price, add the sales percentage, usually 10%, add shipping and add your time off work going to the auction.
    Another thing to watch is that horizontals were bought in industry for heavy work and usually show signs of such. If you get a chance get one with a vertical head so you have the best of both worlds but beware not many have a moveable quill so and angle work like boring motorcycle valve seats still require you to set the job at an angle as opposed to setting the head at an angle.

    PS. They are that cheap over here that you can't give them away. Peter Forbes over on RCM was trying to give a small Adcock and Shipley away about a month ago. He got no offers and dumped it off on me so I could rob the main ISO 40 spindle out of it for using as a dummy to machine special holders. Once someone else collects the motor it's going in the scrap.

    ------------------
    Regards,
    John Stevenson,
    Nottingham, England

    [This message has been edited by John Stevenson (edited 05-02-2001).]
    .

    Sir John , Earl of Bligeport & Sudspumpwater. MBE [ Motor Bike Engineer ] Nottingham England.




  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
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    14

    Thumbs up

    Thanks for the replies - I will mostly be cutting small steel gears and also plastic gears - very very low quantities (hobby work). I think a vertical mill will work fine for this. My problem is finding a distributor for metric gear cutters that will sell to the home user (non-commercial sale).
    Anyone have any experience with the rotary table / dividing head combinations? Grizzly sells one (they sell dividing head add-ons for their rotary table) and for what I need it for (gear cutting as mentioned above above) it seems like it should work fine.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
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    13

    Post

    John,
    I don't have room for another machine, but if one comes along, I'm sure it will be crammed into the shop somewhere, I think I'm running an "old folks home" for vintage machines and other "orphans" that need a home!
    No, I'm not arguing the vert vs horiz, just wanted to point out that horizontals are cheap rite now, and may be a better deal than a horizontal attachment. I have a B&S horiz'l with vertical atachment and it has no moveable quill in it.

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