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Moving a Cincinnati 2 MH

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  • Moving a Cincinnati 2 MH

    Well, I bought another one for my collection. This one is a fairly well tooled little horizontal mill - a 2 MH, before the dial types were introduced. Now I just need to move it! I've got a pallet jack and a skid / pallet to support it but I don't have a good way to lift it enough to slide the pallet under. The machine is only about 4500 lbs (net weight according to Cincinnati is 4100 lbs with arbor supports and no motor).

    I've got hydraulic bottle jacks, a handyman jack, lumber, an engine hoist, a chainfall hoist (but no gantry ) and probably some other odds and ends. Ideally I'd have a good, sturdy way to build a gantry over it and lift it up with slings but I'm not sure how practical that is. Any suggestions?

    I just took a few other machines out today and did it slow and steady using wooden posts/beams and bottle jacks to raise it a bit, block it, raise it a bit, etc. until I could sort of build the skid under it and grab it with the jack. I could do that again, I suppose, but it's very slow and somewhat scary process.

  • #2
    Teeter it. Gather a stack of 1 x 4 and 2 x 4 about as long as the base of the mill plus maybe 4". Also several strips of 1/4 or 3/8 ply. These will be used to shim up as you gain height.

    The usual safety lecture applies. Hands, feet, proceed with caution etc.

    The object is to raise the mill by small increments rocking from side to side until you gain clearance to get the pallet jack under it. To do so requires you monitor the balance of the machine so it doesn't topple. Pry under the machine by levering in the toe jack notch in the base (if there is one). Long steel levers, short purchases, and firmly fixed steel fulcrums are the rule.

    OK. Strip the machine of odd table junk, remove attachments, disconnect and prep, etc. Center the table on the saddle. Musteer your equipment and brief your help. Important safety suggestion. When someone hollers "stop," everybody stop and back away. Discuss moves but ignore BS from bystanders.

    You're going to raise the mill by rocking it side to side, shimming under each gain withe the lumber. The base of that machine is a couple feet wide. At every gain, shim under the edge as ablock against ove- setting the machine. The two stacks of shims are the ones you teeter the machine on. These are spaces about 4" apart symmetrical on the machine center of balance. Raise one edge until you can get one 1/4 shim under it. Lever it some more working thee shim closer to the center until the shim's inner edge is " from the machine;s center line.

    Move to the opposite side of the machine and lever up etc working a 3/8" shim to the center. Lay a 1/4 shim under the very edge of the machine as a guard against tipping too far. Move to the first side and lever up until you can slip two 1/4 shims and insert an anti tip shim under that edge. Repeat tipping the machine back and forth jockeying the shims bit by bit and following progress with the anti tip shims on either side.

    Once you get the machine up on tow sets of shims tilting thee machine one way or another takes little effort and can be accomplished by one man if need be. But be sure to follow the raise with anti-tip shims blocking over-set if worse comet to worse. When you get the machine high enough for the forks run the pallet jack or forklift into the prepared space (you did measure so thing will work out didn't you).

    There are quicker ways to make the initial lift that are quicker and less of a nail biter but this does it safely with minimum equipment. But to not for4get to follow the raise with blocking.

    Pallet jacks tip easy particularly with top heavy loads like milling machines. Prepare a couple of sticks with wedges hinged to them so your helpers can follow along as you move. If the machine wants to tip the wedge can be jammed in where it will do the most good.

    I assume you will have to load this machine on a truck which will require more fiddling with jacks and blocks.

    All this sond like a big risky PITA? Good The simplest and safest way to move the milling machine is rent a forklift. Safety is no accident and the right gear is by far the safest. Renting a forklift to move a milling machine could be the best money you ever spent.

    But you're not home yet. Cast iron machine tools on steel forks are slip and slide like a hog on ice. Make a skid and bolt the machine to it. Clean wood on steel forks is much safer and you can use the pipe ad roller trick to move the machine around until you get it spotted.
    Last edited by Forrest Addy; 06-27-2016, 04:21 AM.

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    • #3
      Great details on how to do it. If it were me I'd actually put a pallet under it (a ready made one or one I made to fit) so it's not steel on iron & the mill won't slip & strap it to pallet if needed then take it out when ready to set in it's final place. I have to get my #3 H home this week but the seller has access to skates & I found a rollback that will haul my $100 mill the 40-50 miles for $100. Good luck!
      "Let me recommend the best medicine in the
      world: a long journey, at a mild season, through a pleasant
      country, in easy stages."
      ~ James Madison

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      • #4
        Thanks Forrest - that's exactly what I did to move a Bridgey, a bandsaw and a shaper. Unfortunately, it's just a slow and - for me at least - somewhat stressful method. I'd like to find some easy way to pick it up and then slide the whole pallet/skid under it in one go... I just need a heavy duty forklift!

        Originally posted by flylo View Post
        Great details on how to do it. If it were me I'd actually put a pallet under it (a ready made one or one I made to fit) so it's not steel on iron & the mill won't slip & strap it to pallet if needed then take it out when ready to set in it's final place. I have to get my #3 H home this week but the seller has access to skates & I found a rollback that will haul my $100 mill the 40-50 miles for $100. Good luck!
        I prebuilt a heavy duty pallet that can support the weight and it's setup so I can bolt the machine to it using 1/2" lags. It's also 4' by 4' with skids on the bottom to make it a little more stable. The only problem is how to get it under the mill! I did the same thing for the aforementioned Bridgeport and ended up having to dismantle it and build it in place after teeter-tottering it up on blocks. Not my ideal solution but it worked.


        Edit: LOL - Forrest, I didn't see your edited post until after I posted mine. You are correct that a Forklift would definitely make the process easier. Unfortunately, this shop is in a remote location so just finding a forklift to rent and transporting it to the shop adds a whole new level of complexity. I do always bolt the machines to a wide pallet, as indicated above, and sometimes use ratchet straps to help keep it from getting too tippy. Then the whole packaged assembly gets drug up on the trailer with a come-along and pallet jack. The loading usually goes smoothly once I'm on a pallet/skid. It's just getting the machine onto a pallet or skid that is tough.
        Last edited by Fasttrack; 06-27-2016, 06:53 AM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Forrest Addy View Post
          Teeter it. Gather a stack of 1 x 4 and 2 x 4 about as long as the base of the mill plus maybe 4". Also several strips of 1/4 or 3/8 ply. These will be used to shim up as you gain height.

          The usual safety lecture applies. Hands, feet, proceed with caution etc.

          The object is to raise the mill by small increments rocking from side to side until you gain clearance to get the pallet jack under it.
          99.99% of what Forrest says usually should be a law of some kind, this post is no different..... with maybe a small modification in my opinion.
          I would "rock" or jack the machine from front to back instead of side to side as it is usually a longer dimension and i have found in most cases a little more stable.

          Also in the safety lecture I would add:

          Be aware of your surroundings, there is nothing like moving out of the way of a pinch point etc. only to find that you backed into or stood up under another machine table or handle.I hate giving myself a kidney punch with a machine handle.

          I like to roll a machine out of it"s usually crowded original location on a few pieces of pipe or shafting before attempting to raise the machine in a less congested area when possible.

          Strips of rubber conveyor belt make a nice transition between forks and machine parts/bases to aid in traction in lieu of wood.

          Steve

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          • #6
            A tripod can pick it in one go.
            I can't do the engineering for you, but three joints of Sch. 80 2" with flattened ends and pins ( to allow variable stance) cobbled to a 3/8" mild steel plate that has a hook/clevis/loop welded to the center will pick a couple tons at about 6' radius with no noticeable deflection. Square or rectangular tube would be better no doubt.
            Understand that the wider the spread, the less the pipe acts like columns. Use some light chain/cable around the feet to keep the pipe from spreading. The footprint of your mill is smaller than the 40HP motor & pump units I used to set with such a rig.
            Quick to knock together. Drawback, there is NO TRAVELING though a little swing is OK.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by doctor demo View Post

              Strips of rubber conveyor belt make a nice transition between forks and machine parts/bases to aid in traction in lieu of wood.
              Thanks, Steve - that's a great tip and one I haven't heard before.

              This isn't my first machinery move and it's far from the heaviest. I moved a 8800 lb shaper on steel pipes and lots of cussing! Also moved two different 2Ds, three different Pacemakers and a host of other smaller machines on several occasions by rocking, rolling and generally just taking it slow. That's no problem when I'm moving my machine from one state to another or one building to another. The only issue I have is with the time it takes - I always feel like an a**hole wasting the seller's time when it takes me 4 hours to load a machine and another hour to get it strapped down!

              Originally posted by Carm View Post
              A tripod can pick it in one go.
              ...
              Quick to knock together. Drawback, there is NO TRAVELING though a little swing is OK.
              I had not considered a tripod. Certainly more stable than what I cobbled together with wood. I'll give that a ponder and see what I have in the shop that might work.
              Last edited by Fasttrack; 06-27-2016, 02:45 PM.

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              • #8
                Fastrack,

                Three 10 foot x2 inch pipe. Three ½ x 5 inch cold roll for pins. Weld something for the head rig.

                Drill three holes in the concrete drop in pins set each pipe over the pin stops the pipe from sliding under load. Put head rig on and lift the machine. Slide pallet under machine. Break down tripod and fill ½ inch holes with concrete patch. Done and no smashed machine or body parts.

                Bob

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bob Ford View Post
                  Fastrack,

                  Three 10 foot x2 inch pipe. Three ½ x 5 inch cold roll for pins. Weld something for the head rig.

                  Drill three holes in the concrete drop in pins set each pipe over the pin stops the pipe from sliding under load. Put head rig on and lift the machine. Slide pallet under machine. Break down tripod and fill ½ inch holes with concrete patch. Done and no smashed machine or body parts.

                  Bob
                  I like putting pins in the concrete - I've got a rotary hammer that would make quick work of the holes. Thanks for the ideas, everyone. It will be a few weeks before I make it back but I'll try to post some pics of the process afterwards.

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                  • #10
                    Simplest way is to lift from the base and then slide the "pallet" material under it and screw together which also allows you to remove it the same way. If you build a pallet from plywood then you have the PITA of getting it on and off the pallet. All you need is a 5-6 foot pry bar and some blocks of wood. You'll need a helper though to work the blocks. Once you get it up you need a couple of 2x6s and a pair of 4x4 for the runners. I like to use a combination of 3/4 ply scraps, 2x4, 4x4, and 4x6 chucks and just go around in circles until you have the clearance you need. I always repeat for anyone listening to be sure the secure the machine to the pallet with lags. They don't need to hold the machine down we're just keeping the machine centered on the pallet. Machines can and will walk right off a pallet.

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