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I need my Bridgeport spindle reground.

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  • I need my Bridgeport spindle reground.

    While the runout is very low, I have about 5 thousandths axial play- from the spindle and not the quill. I dropped the spindle on the table and tightened the locknut inside, and made sure the nosecap was tight, but there was no change. I have never been totally happy with how well the spindle held the QC 30 tools, and the contact after bluing was so-so best I can tell. I don't know what went wrong, but I need it professionally fixed to be the best it can be. I am tired of it squealing and making crappy parts.

    I spoke to Bill at C&M Spindle in Oregon and he was rather unfamiliar with the QC 30 system, even saying that it was a Kwik Switch which I had to explain to him was another system that is less common on Bridgeports. Anyway, he assures me he can do it and set it up perfectly for the sum of $650 for bearings and $350 for a regrind. Setting up the locknut for the QC 30's takes some care and I am nervous about giving it to someone not experienced with these locknuts.

    The bearing price includes installing 4 bearings in the spindle plus the top one. I asked him who makes the bearings he uses and he could not pronounce the name, I asked him where they come from and he said China which leaves me nervous. He said that the only way he can get bearings with a seal on one side is from China. One manufacturer makes the bearings, and another installs a seal on one side. He says he removes the seal from the 2 inside bearings of the stack of 4. Bill also told me that he can set it up to run at higher RPM's if I tell him how high I wanted to go, up to a 6500 limit. I found that interesting and I don't understand what he would do different.

    Wells-Index is about $750 for normal bearing setup and a regrind.

    I am not sure if the extra 2 bearings are worth the cost, and I am not sure that I am comfortable with the China bearings. I have a lot invested in this machine already, including re-balled ballscrews, and it seems to make sense to suck it up and get the spindle done right.

    Any random thoughts?

  • #2
    So are you saying you have a Erickson 30 Taper and Not a Kwik Switch 30 taper system ? ( I know Kwik Switch is popular in the NW)
    The Best Spindle Bearing maker in the world (IMHO) is Barden Bearings , and I am sure you could get bearings from them.
    ( They don't do anything less than Grade 7 ! )
    When you remove the tool from the spindle, does the NUT feel tighter than when you installed the tool ?
    Bridgeport Series 2 Mill ?

    Rich
    Last edited by Rich Carlstedt; 03-04-2021, 06:00 PM.
    Green Bay, WI

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    • #3
      I would be concerned about giving them your mill, especially when they use Cheap bearings and have never heard of your Taper size.
      I would talk to these guys first and see what they say. They have been around a long time.

      ​​​​​​https://www.machinerypartsdepot.com/
      Beaver County Alberta Canada

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      • #4
        Where are you located?

        I've never done business with this outfit, but I have heard some outstanding reviews on the quality of their work:

        http://www.babinmachine.com

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        • #5
          I'm not sure why this is even a question if you can get it done at Wells-Index for less than the hoopty guy. To be set up for higher speeds the bearing stack would be run with less preload.

          It sounds from your description like your current bearings are worn out and have lost all their preload. Tightening the bearing locknut won't help you any.

          And there is no way in hell I would put Chinese bearings in any spindle of mine.
          Last edited by eKretz; 03-04-2021, 07:04 PM.

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          • #6
            So are you saying you have a Erickson 30 Taper and Not a Kwik Switch 30 taper system ? ( I know Kwik Switch is popular in the NW)
            It is an Bridgeport Series II CNC. 5000 pounds of iron with an Erickson QC 30 spindle. Kwik Switch 200 was much less popular than the Ericson system.



            The Best Spindle Bearing maker in the world (IMHO) is Barden Bearings , and I am sure you could get bearings from them.
            ( They don't do anything less than Grade 7 ! )
            Barden bearings were what was installed in the machine. They were about 12 years old.



            When you remove the tool from the spindle, does the NUT feel tighter than when you installed the tool ?

            Rich
            Not sure Rich. I never noticed that and the spindle is all apart so I can't test it out.


            Thanks,
            Scott

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            • #7
              Originally posted by redlee View Post
              I would be concerned about giving them your mill, especially when they use Cheap bearings and have never heard of your Taper size.
              I would talk to these guys first and see what they say. They have been around a long time.

              ​​​​​​https://www.machinerypartsdepot.com/
              I am familiar with Barry as I have purchased parts from him on a number of occasions. He does not regrind spindles and after seeing his video of how he installs spindle bearings.....no thanks.

              You can't just assume that the China bearings are cheap. China can make stuff every bit as good as any other country, it just become a question of whether you are getting one of their top quality products or a junk quality part. The composition of the steel plays a huge part in the bearings life. So not knowing anything about these bearings makes it a crap shoot, but hey, at least you would have 4 of them to wear out rather than just 2,



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              • #8
                I don't even put Chinese bearings in my lawn mower blade spindles let alone my mill.

                I don't understand a person that rebuilds spindles and all he can come up with is chinese bearings.
                What about Fafnir?

                JL.....

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                • #9
                  These guys specialize in Bridgeport parts and repairs. They do spindle bearings and are very reasonable. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UPJhq9POdAA

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by JoeLee View Post
                    I don't even put Chinese bearings in my lawn mower blade spindles let alone my mill.

                    I don't understand a person that rebuilds spindles and all he can come up with is chinese bearings.
                    What about Fafnir?
                    Joe, he told me as I stated above that the only source for these bearings WITH seals is from China. And at that, he clearly stated that one manufacturer makes the bearing and they send it to another manufacturer who installs the seals. He gets them with seals on one side, pulls out the seals in the middle 2 bearings, and installs the outer bearings with seals facing out. He says that he has to purchase 25 pairs at a time.

                    He stated wrongly that Bridgeport never installed sealed bearings, but I corrected him and told him that they did and my CNC mill originally had sealed bearings as did my 2J head machine. I am not even sure you need any seals on these bearings....

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                    • #11
                      Can't see any reason to ship a spindle to the west coast. Certainly are capable shop closer, Owner of Suburban Tool talks about the shop he uses for spindle repair in one of videos.
                      No personal experience: http://www.fps-spindles.com/

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                      • #12
                        Doesn't Hardinge rebuild them?

                        JL....

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                        • #13
                          What is C&M Spindle's guarantee/warrantee?

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                          • #14
                            Joe, I will look into Hardinge repair.
                            Elf, I think the warranty from C&M is a year.

                            Does anyone know if these bearings are the proper ones for a Bridgeport spindle? The price certainly is right.
                            https://tinyurl.com/yu6bpjdu
                            They are DUL, which is a light preload. Would that produce a less stiff spindle?

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                            • #15
                              A spindle specialists wants $650 for unpronounceable bearings, made in China? that just seems nuts. I'd contact a few more spindle shops
                              in Toronto Ontario - where are you?

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