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Newbie w/question on HF rotary table

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  • Newbie w/question on HF rotary table

    Hi,

    New to the forum, so let me introduce myself. My work backround is in manufacturing. I started as a machine operator. Moved up to CNC programmer. Moved up again to CNC support applications developer. I spent the last 10 years of my working career as an application programmer/consultant for manufacturing support systems (material handling, process control, etc.).

    I'm now semi-retired (aka. unemployed) and building pool cues as a hobby. I've got a small shop set up in my garage. My latest aquisition is a 3 axis Taig CNC mill. I want to upgrade to 4 axis.

    Now to my question. I bought a cheap 3" rotary table at Harbor Freight. As with most HF equipment, the documentation is a joke. Anyway, I plan to remove the hand crank and mount a stepper for CNC control. The first thing I wanted to do was disassemble the table to clean it and check the gearing for burrs. Removal of the worm gear was a snap, but I need to remove the table from the base as well. I've removed to allen head screw and washer from the back (bottom) of the table, but the table is still firmly attached to the base. I'm trying to figure out if the table is "press fit" into the bearing in the base, or if I happened to get one with a burr (or chip) that has wedged the table to the base. If it's "intentionally" press fit, I guess I'll just need to get access to a press to remove (and reassemble) the table. If it's a manufacturing defect, I'll take it back and get another.

    Has anyone disassembled one of these tables that can tell me what I'm up against?
    Bill Shubert

  • #2
    Hey cat man,

    I bought one of those 3" HF RT's too. Looks like mine was made in India. Mine seems to work very smoothly.

    If yours is working ok, I would hesitate to disassemble it any further. The guts could be cheap plastic made to self destruct upon dis assembly.

    Welcome to the forum,

    Tim

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks!

      Originally posted by tmc_31
      Hey cat man,

      I bought one of those 3" HF RT's too. Looks like mine was made in India. Mine seems to work very smoothly.

      If yours is working ok, I would hesitate to disassemble it any further. The guts could be cheap plastic made to self destruct upon dis assembly.

      Welcome to the forum,

      Tim
      Hi Tim,

      That's the one. INDIA is prominently stamped/etched one one the side of the base.

      I don't think there is any plastic. I'm more concerned with sloppy machining/assembly. It wouldn't suprise me to find pinion teeth that were not deburred or chips from the machining process. I'm guessing the worst that would happen if I used a press to pop it out would be the destruction of the (probably very cheap) bearing. I was just hoping someone had experience that might save me some time and/or trouble.

      Thanks for your response!
      Bill Shubert

      Comment


      • #4
        If it doesn't have backlash adjustment you are wasting you time putting a stepper on it for CNC.

        Phil

        Originally posted by Bill the Cat
        Hi Tim,

        That's the one. INDIA is prominently stamped/etched one one the side of the base.

        I don't think there is any plastic. I'm more concerned with sloppy machining/assembly. It wouldn't suprise me to find pinion teeth that were not deburred or chips from the machining process. I'm guessing the worst that would happen if I used a press to pop it out would be the destruction of the (probably very cheap) bearing. I was just hoping someone had experience that might save me some time and/or trouble.

        Thanks for your response!

        Comment


        • #5
          It does!

          Originally posted by philbur
          If it doesn't have backlash adjustment you are wasting you time putting a stepper on it for CNC.

          Phil
          Hi Phil,

          It's rather crude, but it does allow for minimal backlash adjustment. The main problem is that the worm gear is iron and the pinion is brass. I figure there will come a time when the wear on the brass pinion will be too great (or just uneven) to allow for taking out all the backlash. However, at 1/6th the cost of a Sherline, I figure I can just replace it when that time comes.

          Thanks for your input!
          Bill Shubert

          Comment


          • #6
            Bill,
            I had to disassemble my PhaseII 8" rotab, and it wasn't easy nor straightforward. It's been a couple of years now, so my memory isn't real good, but I seem to recall a problem due to the locks. It LOOKED real easy at first, but took some thinking and observation to figure it out.

            Comment


            • #7
              I just picked up a little 3 incher at BusyBee and took it apart to check for all the stuff you don't want to see inside. The table is held into the bearing with a very light press fit (at least on mine it was) and all I had to do was tap it out from the bottom. It was surprisingly clean inside, so all I did was give it a quick rinse in solvent, re-lube it and reassemble it.

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