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Thread: Mobile base for milling machine???

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    Independent principality of Sinquefieldia (formerly Missouri)
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    Mag ballasts are less efficient, and can buzz.

    Electronic ballasts can be very efficient, but often create a lot of electronic noise and blank out radio reception. They may trip GFIs.

    Also, they are generally made in china, where the UL or CSA recognition may be obtained by payment of bribes, not actual compliance with rules..... They MAY be safe, and MAY meet the radio interference rules. But then, they may NOT, and may just fail and burst into flame someday......there have been some recalls recently.

    Unfortunately, I have knowlege of cases where a product unit failed US testing due to flammability, but passed when "testing" was done in china. The products have been sold internationally, with all the safety marks printed on them....the same marks that the US testing said could not be applied.
    2025 1680 1525 1501 0201 1501 2002 1101 0131 0128 1499 0601 0127 0602 1901 1501 25452514 1055 1909

    Keep eye on ball.
    Hashim Khan

  2. #12
    Join Date
    May 2002
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    Beaumont, TX
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    7,250

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    First consideration: SAFETY. Think out every step and look for anything that can go wrong.

    I had to put a mill-drill in a shop that is only 10' wide and that is at the end of a hallway that has a 90 degree turn. A second 90 degree turn was necessary in the shop as it's axis was not the hall's axis. Also had to raise it up to put it on the stand.

    We used a pallet jack and pipe rollers to get it down the hallway and into the shop. The rollers were very helpful at the two turns.

    In the shop we put it in place on the floor and assembled a motor hoist around it. We then lifted it high enough to remove the pallet and slide the stand under it. We bolted it down to the stand and lifted both together one last time to get the final position with the motor about one inch from the wall. The wheels on the engine hoist helped jockey it that last inch or two. That 10' width is a killer. There was another bench opposite the mill drill but we moved it down the wall for this operation.

    I had about 3 or 4 others helping and we stressed safety at each and every step.

    As for the mobile base, I'm sure it could be done, but I don't know if that is a good idea or not. A mill does not need the leveling accuracy that a lathe does but what about flexing and vibration. The head will need to be tramed to the table. Trust me, IT WILL. If you move it, will this change? Of course it will. How much??? And what will an off balance cutter like a fly cutter do in terms of vibration? Or just an interrupted cut. Yes, it may walk.

    The importance of leveling? Lathes need to be leveled for accuracy. As I mentioned above, that massive, heavy, solid looking base of youir mill can flex and twist a bit. Half a thousanth at the base may be several thousanths after being amplified by the longer lever arm of the column. Actually, being level is not the real requirement. A lathe bed needs to be straight, not twisted. Leveling is just the practical method of accomplishing this. It would work equally well at a 1 or even a 10 degree angle if it remained untwisted. Same for a mill, but perhaps a little less critical.

    Electrical safety. Your mill is almost certainly wired per code. The safety ground pin on the plug should be solidly connected to the frame of the machine and the motor. You can easily test this with the resistance scale on a multimeter. Any properly wired outlet that matches your plug should be sufficient. It's not hard but if you don't know how OR don't know the local and national electric codes, then get a qualified electrician to do it.

    Paul A.

    [This message has been edited by Paul Alciatore (edited 01-07-2005).]
    Paul A.

    Make it fit.
    You can't win and there is a penalty for trying!

  3. #13

    Post

    Wider is better. I've got my Hardinge horizontal w/Bridgeport head on casters with a threaded lug in the center that's adjustable. These casters are mounted on flat stock that is bolted to the casting base of the machine. When not in use I turn machine 90 degrees against the wall & screw the lug down so the machine doesn't move same as when in place to machine parts. My flat stock is about 8" beyond the machine casting on both sides. These casting weren't cheap approx. $70 each but well worth it when your limited for space.

  4. #14

    Post

    J Tiers:
    You may very well be correct on the cord disconnect in the US - it is not true in every local and you need to check with the local electrical inspector. The rules are very different in Alberta than they are in Ontario - you can get away with more in Ontario than Alberta. The Alberta Electrical Protection Branch follows strict adherance to the CNEC and CSA requirements and will whack your pee-pee with a BFH if they catch you doing anything out of spec - other than that, they are great people to work with and dedicated to safety in the workplace and home.

    Having done many CSA certifications I can assure you that it is a royal PITA to get an approval sticker number for your electrical equipment and the inspectors do regular suprise inpsections and test on everything from the quality of your materilas used to the waorkmanship of the finished product as well as insuring that proper tests are preformed for safety such as dielectric breakdown tests for bussgutters and wiring troughs so that fires are not caused by defective products in the field. And no, Canada does NOT have liability problems with the electrical equipment - just outstanding reliability and pride in our products and safety. We try not to do things half-assed - we leave that to the government (they are sooo good at it! )

  5. #15
    Join Date
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    <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Thrud:
    J Tiers:
    You may very well be correct on the cord disconnect in the US - it is not true in every local and you need to check with the local electrical inspector.
    </font>
    Fact. True even here. Often the locals have only approved a version of the electrical code that is several years behind the times. That means new stuff is still illegal, (and old, bad stuff is still legal )

    <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">
    Having done many CSA certifications I can assure you that it is a royal PITA to get an approval sticker number for your electrical equipment and the inspectors do regular suprise inpsections and test on everything from the quality of your materilas used to the waorkmanship of the finished product as well as insuring that proper tests are preformed
    </font>
    All of our products carry UL, C/UL (Canada/UL combined), CE, C-tick, etc, etc. Years ago, you could get an "Ontario Hydro" approval, and you were good to go....."not no more"......they want to know.

    Our inspection folks own approved labs in several countries and regulatory jurisdictions, so they cover the lot with one very thorough (and expensive) inspection.

    That is for a product for general sale, however. For individual custom industrial installations, there MAY be a requirement for individual agency inspection, more likely the local inspector will do it.

    But for a home shop, frankly, in most all places in the US, if you do the work to code and with good workmanship, nothing will ever be said, and of course it will be as safe as if an electrician did it, or more so. Just watch out and don't try to pass-off new color coded romex as something that has been installed since Eisenhower.

    The union electricians at work did stuff that was NOT to code, WAS unsafe, and caused many problems. It was inspected, also.

    You cannot inspect-in quality or safety. It has to be built-in.

    [This message has been edited by J Tiers (edited 01-09-2005).]
    2025 1680 1525 1501 0201 1501 2002 1101 0131 0128 1499 0601 0127 0602 1901 1501 25452514 1055 1909

    Keep eye on ball.
    Hashim Khan

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
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    1,632

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    A couple of years ago here in Saskatoon (Saskatchewan), a local company that made fiberglass products burned to the ground because of portable machinery with extension cords to power them. One guy either plugged a machine in, or unplugged it, not sure which, but it created a spark and ignited some of the solvent used. The whole frigging place went up in smoke! From what an ex-employee told me, they didn`t even use on/off switches, just pludded it in to start it and unplugged it to shut it off. Talk about a half assed outfit...

  7. #17
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Post

    "I've done a couple things along this line. The first is a set of wheels for a small horizontal mill. Two non-swivel wheels on the motor side that are mounted such that when the machine is sitting level on the floor the wheels don't carry any weight. On the other end is a single swivel castor hinge mounted and with a lock to hold it down. There is a tube welded to this plate on top of the caster to insert a lever (round bar) with which to lever the hinged caster downward raising that end of the machine up. As soon as it comes up a bit the rear wheels start picking the back up as well (just not as high of course). On a relatively level shop floor it can be rolled easily, but then it is sitting solidly on the floor when in use. Shimming may be required if the floor is not level to keep the machine level.
    The other thing I have I also made. I made two side frames from heavy channel and put a fixed (i.e. stupid, er that is swivel challenged) caster on one end of each and a swivel on the other. These are placed on either side of my vertical mill and then are tied together with two 2 inch square steel tubes with end plates that bolt to the side channel frames. In these tubes were drilled some holes that correspond to the holes in the base of my mill. By lifting the mill with a crow bar I can get nuts under them to engage threaded rods which go up to the cross frames. By tightening the nuts on top of the cross frames I raise the the thing just enough to clear the floor and roll it away. Think screw jacks, basically; one in each corner. Used it to bring the machine out of a basement once using planks and a come-a-long."

    Any chance we could see pictures of this stands?

    I for one would like to see them.

    Thanks,

    TMT

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    16

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    I purchased the Grizzly 3617 mill. I got a deal on a use pallet jack and was able to move it into my shop using the pallet jack. The mills have 2 fork slots on the bottom. Don’t know if the pallet jack is the correct width to lift from here though. To get it off the pallet I got 2 pieces of 3x6 channel about 18 inches longer than the pallet. Placed these in the fork slots and using a high lift jack lifted and shimmed until the pallet cleared the floor about ½ inch. I then loosened the mounting bolts and used a sawzall to cut the bolts under the base of the mill. Now I could slide the pallet out. Make sure you have enough room to remove the pallet before jacking the mill. Then slowly ¾ inch at a time I lowered the machine to the ground. The high lift jack would not get low enough so used the spreader on my portapower set to get the last couple of inches. After it was on the ground I used a 6 foot tanker bar to adjust it square and move it a few inches. If we are both lucky a pallet jack will fit the fork slots in the base for easy later moving. Mine is in place so I did not check the pallet fork width for later movement.
    P A Lux

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