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Getting 58' bridgeport set up and somthing is missing

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  • Getting 58' bridgeport set up and somthing is missing

    I've spent some time getting the old girl cleaned up, and re-assembled in the area of operation. This is my first mill, and when I bought it I was very uneducated about them... So anyway I mounted the head back on and was going over the levers and knobs and noticed a threaded hole on the right side. I just dug out my trusty ICAI renovating manual and found that an large oil cup should be there. The only oil cup I can find is like the smaller one (gits oil cup). In the pictures the (i think it is the spindle) oil cup on the side is much larger..... The diagram is not to scale but it also shows a wick.... And I take it is not safe to run with out this lube......

    edit to say it's a j head step pulley

  • #2

    I believe that cup has a copper tube extension to position the wick. You're right about not running it dry. These mills run best "wet". As I recall you may have to do some dis-assembly to install that cup re clearances.


    • #3
      I finally found the cup assembly and have it ordered.

      Just what has to be disassembled to install this?


      • #4
        Cant say for sure, but I believe when I was cleaning up my J head I simply unscrewed the cup and pulled the "pipe-cleaner-esque" wick out to check for grease/crap buildup. I believe there is a requirement though when reinstalling not to have the wick contact the (spindle?) inside of the head directly, but dont think reinstalling required any disassembly. Sorry Im not home to look at my manuals, but I believe John Stevenson has a copy of Mike Hoffman's free rebuild book hosted on his site somewhere, and I used that manual more than any other during my initial cleanup.

        Bridgeports operate best when theyre covered in oil, and spindle bearings are pretty expensive. Being a total loss system, if your mill doesnt have oil stains running across the paint and you havent cleaned it recently, you probably should oil it more.
        "I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer -- born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in the steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace, and propelled by compressible flow."


        • #5
          Undo the three bolts holding on the pulley motor section (undo from below) and remove the entire top unit. Then you'll be able to see exactly where the tube and wick need to be postioned to drip oil onto the felt cover on top of the spindle support bearing.


          • #6
            Ok well now that make perfect sense....

            Thanks to all who replied, it was greatly appreciated.


            • #7
              I think some later Bridgeports came with sealed spindle bearings and did not use that oil cup. But if you have oil lubricated bearings they seem to be like (insert favorite vehicle/machine name here), if it's not leaking it's out of oil!
              Don Young


              • #8
                Yes, some BP's were made for the woodworking industy and had sealed bearings. That's usually marked on the head nameplate... but over time parts get swapped around.


                • #9
                  I'm no expert on Bridgeports since I've never run one, and I'm certainly not up on all the various models they ever made. But for the average run of the mill types? (pun intended). They are what is designated and called a total loss system. In other words they should slowly leak like an old Harley or British car.

                  Lots of mills and maybe including real Bridgeports came with what the average person would think requires greasing since there's a grease nipple on the side of the head. I'm lucky, I did some research before learning it's an oil nipple. I haven't redone my clone yet, but a simple metric or imperial tapered pipe thread is used for grease/oil nipples. So add a short straight threaded section of pipe, a 90 degree fitting, and then a see thru oil container and you'll then know exactly when your head needs some additional oil. Mine is almost new so it doesn't leak much. Buying 5 gallons of spindle oil was in hindsight overkill. I also personally think a drain plug on any of these mills should have been designed in at the factory. Proper lubrication along with an oil change would be the cheapest PM you can do.

                  OT to your question, but to be honest I don't actually know how you'd change the oil in a Bridgeport type head without a partial disassembly. I'd certainly be interested in anyone's thoughts and ideas about exactly where a drain plug should be added on the power downfeed models.



                  • #10
                    cup clearance

                    On my 66 J there wasn't enough clearance to rotate the cup without lifting the motor I recall!


                    • #11
                      I got the oil cup assembly in this week, and have dis assembled down to the gear housing. There is approx an inch of wick hanging out. It that ok, or does it need to be trimmed?? the other end in jammed in the oil cup pretty good....