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Member postings for mgnbuk

Here is a list of all the postings mgnbuk has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Some big tools
24/01/2019 19:28:46

made by Futurmill a firm based in Brighouse Yorks

Now long gone. I'm pretty sure that the old mill that used to bear their name on Wakefield Road is now the site of the Lidl I do my weekly shop at. Kendal & Gent still appear to be in business, though no longer building large machines.

Mike's Ingersoll is about the size of the Craven (with Futuremill head) at Broadbents in Mytholmroyd - my first "proper" job after finishing my apprenticeship. A bit of a change after my last year at Boxfords ! The Craven was also in a pit (to give clearance for the overhead gantry crane), which had a sump with a permenantly running drain pump in one corner as the pit base was below the water table - the canal towpath ran behind the electrican's shop (next to the pit) at about head height & the river Calder was just across the road. The Broadbent works is also long gone (as is the old Boy Lane, Wheatley, Boxford works) - now the site of several appartment blocks.

Nigel B

Thread: Precision Level or Precision Frame Level
23/01/2019 07:55:48

As far as I know precisions levels were extensively used in engineering and machine shops in olden times (even sometimes nowadays)

Not sometimes, pretty much all the time when building and installing machine tools. I have two precision block levels at work and use them during the installation of every machine that comes in to the works. Once set, regular checks as part of routine maintenance show if the machine has moved and requires adjustment. Level checks are the first checks specified in machine inspection records - correct levels being a pre-requisit of the following accuracy checks.

I would like to have box level as well as the two block levels - if I could only have one type, I would prefer a box level. At my last employment (CNC machine tool rebuild & retrofit) we had 2 calibrated box levels (one magnetic), a block level & a Talyvel electronic level (with block and box frames) and could not have functioned without them. Another area were the model engineering fraternity take a different view to industrial practice ?

Nigel B

Thread: Some big tools
18/01/2019 20:26:57

"Its the largest milling machine in the world" - 'cept it isn't - its a vertical borer, not a milling machine.

Neither is the centre lathe or the floor borer - an old Asquith.

Impressive project, though.

Nigel B

Thread: VAT on eBooks
18/01/2019 20:09:00

No doubt we will end up adopting new models, but I very much doubt if a small share of £8 a month would offset the loss of subscription income. It's only going to work for titles with very wide appeal not specialist audiences.

Seems MTM do actually use a competitor subscription service to Readly - Magzter Gold - and ME and MEW are on it So this new model is working for them already ? I see from a quick look at the titles available on Magzter Gold that there are quite few publishers using both subscription services, so maybe MTM could be persuaded to join them & increase their readership ?

From what I can gather, Readly pay the publishers for issues read, so the publishers are not giving away their products FoC.

Nigel B

18/01/2019 15:43:07

Unfortunately when the traditional business model fails you will lose professionally produced magazines and along with everyone else.

So where does Readly come in to the traditional periodical publishing business model, Neil ?

I don't mean that in a provocative way, just interested. Some of the larger publishing houses appear to support it (like Bauer & Archant for instance). Not just the latest issue available, but a couple of years worth of back issues for most titles as well - all for £8(ish) a month. MTM noticably absent at the moment, along with Mortons (motorcycle magazines), but this may change ?

I took out a trail subscrpition with their "Black Friday" deal of £1.99 for 2 months & will continue with it - I get to read most of the British & Continental motorcycle magazines I normally bought the odd issue of + have found others I didn't know about before. Plus the airgun & shooting mags I used to subscribe to & I have a had a brief look at some german ME mags - and there are thousands more to choose from.

Is this a way forward ? I would concede that the tablet reading experience is harder on the eyes than paper, but the ability to download issues to the tablet to read off line is very convenient & has it got me to read titles I had lapsed subscritions on, re-introduced me foreign magzines I used to buy ad hoc but dropped due to the cost, introduced titles that were otherwise unkown or unavailable or of insufficient direct interest to buy regularly.

It used to be bandied about that publishers made the bulk of their money from advertisers & that the cover price just covered the printing & distribution costs. I don't know if that is true or not, but if the goal is to get as many people to read the magazines to attract the advertisers, then a more modern distribution model like Readly may help save the day ?

Nigel B

Thread: Free Electricity
17/01/2019 08:02:24

Not so free if and when you wish to sell your house. The legalities, etc likely cost the vendor thousands. These rented roofs are a minefield for potential house purchasers. Far better to install your own kit and avoid the third party renters of equipment.

Both my neighbours had the panels fitted by A Shade Greener shortly after I had mine installed & both subsequently sold on. The first had a bit of a gripe from the Halifax BS, but A Shade Greener put an additional clause in the contract that allowed, in the event that HBS re-possesed the house, that ASG would remove the installation without charges if requested to do so - a "backstop" in current parlance, I suppose. Neither my original or new neighbours suggested that this had cost them any extra. With so many of this type of installation (ASG had over 10,000 at the time I saw a TV report about them moving out of their original area into ours & got in touch with them), arrangements will be made to accomodate them when properies get sold.

At the time of installation, the arrangement we have would have cost around £18K so, for me at the time, an outright purchase of my own installation was not possible. Installation costs did come down a lot as numbers of installations increased, so several years later owning my own may have been an option. As it is I generate around 4500 kwh a year, for which ASG receive (IIRC) 42p per kwh FiT & I get to use the electricity FOC - what I can't use at the time it is generated feeds back into the mains.

Nigel B

16/01/2019 18:51:36

Yes we all know that you there is no such thing as electricity for free

Not so - I get up to 3Kw totally free when the sun shines in summer & up to 2Kw in winter.

I just let a company called A Shade Greener fill the south facing side of my roof with solar PV panels - they own the panels & are responsible for maintaing them for 25 years. They get paid the Feed in tariffs & I get to use all the electricity they produce at no cost. At the end of the 25 year period (when the Fits end) they give me the installation FoC, so totally free electricity.

Nigel B

Thread: Autocad 2000 Cant draw at a chosen angle.
16/01/2019 18:44:17

Sounds like it is working as I recall it did. The absolute zero degree point is at the 3 o'clock position relative to the centre point - 90 degrees is 12 o'clcock, 180 degrees at 9 o'clock & 270 degrees at 6 o'clock.

To get your line to point 30 degrees "downwards" to the left of centre, use -30 degrees or 330 degrees, if you want it to go to the right of centre use 210 degrees.

Hope I understood your question correctly & that this helps.

Nigel B

Thread: Anyone fitted a DRO to Sieg SC4?
12/01/2019 10:30:35

A laser DRO surely can't be far away now

Laser measuring systems suitable for machine tools have been available for years - Renishaw make them (and probably others). You could comprehensively outfit a complete ME workshop for less then the cost of a single axis installation (without counter / console) though. Probably don't need nanometer resolution in the home workshop either.

While I dare say that lower resolution electronics could be made at a lower cost, chances are that the main expense lies with the optics required (beam splitter & reflector).

Nigel B

Thread: Boxford premises for sale
21/12/2018 12:02:57


I passed the Boxford works this morning on my way to take my car in for service & was suprised to see a "For Sale" sign on the premises.

Hopefully they are just relocating & have not gone - I can't find anything to suggest anything either way.

Nigel B

Thread: harrison m300, spindle run out...bearings?
19/12/2018 14:40:53

We have a Harrison VS330 at work, which is similar size & vintage to an M300 (our machine is an '87).
While I can't guarantee it (can't find an M300 parts book online), I would expect the spindle bearing arrangement to be similar if not the same.

The VS330 has a Gamet 124070/124112xC front bearing and a Gamet 110055/110100C rear bearing according to the parts book. Hope these are OK, as Simply Bearings list the front bearing at £325.62 & the rear at £271.07 - both plus Vat.

The VS330 manual spindle preload setting proceedure is to check the drag torque on the spindle after running at 800 rpm for 10 minutes.

The correct torque is given as 0.9/1.1Nm (8/10 inch pounds), checked by wrapping a cord 3 times around the chuck & attatching a light spring balance to the free end of the cord. Gently tension the spring balance until the spindle just starts to turn & maintain the rotation - read off the value of the spring balance. Example given is using a 160mm dia. chuck, the balance reading should be 1.14/1.38 kg (2.5/3 lbs).

Bearing adjustment is via a nut under the rear bearing cover. Remove the end drive guard, changewheels, swing frame & rear bearing cover. Release locking screw in the adjusting nut. Using pin spanner provided with lathe, adjust the nut clockwise to increase preload. As overtightening will shorten bearing life, work in small (3mm at nut periphery) increments. After each incremental adjustment run spindle for a few minutes & re-check drag torque.

Loose rollers suggest adjustment is required - all the rollers should rotate when the spindle is rotated.


Nigel B

Thread: Cost effective way of measuring 90degrees very accurately on Milling machine
01/12/2018 16:40:45

No machine is any more accurate than the machine which made it,there is no such thing as Apsolute accuracy ,even at top level.

That is why machine tool builders use skilled fitters - they recify any machining errors to produce machines equal to, or better than, the various machines that contributed the parts.

Nothing wrong with checking out the accuracy of a new (to you) machine & improving on it using time tested techniques.

Nigel B

06/11/2018 13:59:58

Well as the photo shows the OP already has an R8 chuck

The photo also shows a quill clamp lever fitted, so is possibly a "generic" photo of the particular machine & not the OP's own.

Nigel B

Thread: Profiled steel plate
15/09/2018 11:22:49

I use PP Profiles in Batley, West Yorkshire for work - all small orders / 1 offs. They also offer Lumsden grinding to nominal thickness (+/- 0.25mm) & heat treating (stress relief / annealing). They just require a .dxf file of the profile you require. I have found the cut profiles to be clean and accurate to better than 0.2mm, so you don't need much of a machining allowance. Usually a couple of weeks turnround - they post small items & have a delivery lorry for bigger parts.



Nigel B

Thread: 3 in 1 sheetmetal bender
14/09/2018 16:25:44

I have a Chester 300mm version.

I was going to buy a "damaged-repairable, includes the replacement parts" machine from one of Chester's Hawarden open days (it had a broken foot on one side frame), but it turned out that Chester only had LH frames in stock & the RH side was broken (or vice versa). They offered me a good deal on a new one, so I went for that instead..

Got it home, stripped it to clean off the gunk & deburr the razor sharp edges on all the ground parts, then found on re-assembly that it wouldn't work properly. The holes in the moving bending vee/ guillotine blade holder for the actuating arms were bored out of postion & as a result it wouldn't do all the functions. I took the offending part back,& explained the situation, but Chester had no spares - they arranged instead for the faulty machine to be collected when another new one was delivered. This one I tried before stripping it !

The guillotine isn't great, as the moving blade beam is poorly held back to the main frame & tends to want to tilt when near cutting anywhere the machine's stated capacity - 1mm steel is hard work & the "real" capacity is less than this. It's OK on thin aluminium, but won't touch thin stainless. The bender is OK-ish - it doesn't give sharp corners, but I have not used it much. The rolls work fine - probably the best bit.

It is a heavy little lump & really needs bolting down to a bench to use safely, as you need to swing on the handle to cut and the base is quite short. I have mine G-clamped to an inexpensive Lidl "Workmate", which has worked so far for the limited use it has had - a purpose made stand is on (but probably a long way down) the "Round Tuit" list.. I tried to get clever & bought a second handle on another visit to an open day (the single handle supplied can be fitted at either side), thinking that two-handed operation would make cutting easier. Unfortunately the lever slots are cut in different angluar positions on each end piece, so the levers sit in very different positions !

I sometimes look at it with a view to improving the method of adjustment & support of the moving bending/guillotine blade holder, which I think in requires to be useable, but thinking about it is as far as this has got . So far, not one of my better purchases !

Nigel B

Thread: 1.1 kW electric motor burns up..
23/08/2018 20:11:27

I have a TaiwaneseTrutool branded RF30 mill/drill , which appears to be identical bar the maker's name to the earlier (late 80's / early '90s) Warco Major.

This has a 1.5Kw (2hp) motor, not 1.1Kw as Jens Eirick's Chinese version (and the current Warco offering) has. Maybe the Chinese built versions have been downgraded from the original Taiwanese built machine specification ?

Nigel B

Thread: Inverter advice
24/06/2018 14:46:42

On balance it's probably not worth bothering with the mill but as some have suggested I could get a 220V 3 phase with a VFD for the lathe (which is what I'm most interested in). This would be far more economical than going for a static inverter as they are very expensive!

Depends what you mean by "expensive". I bought one of these for a 415V only surface grinder & also use it on a 3 phase RF30 mill/drill :


Sign up for Machine Mart e-mails & two or three times a year they used to do "Vat free" promotions on Clarke products, which is how I bought mine. No hassle, no faffing with "wrong" motors & the mill will work too - plug & play.

Nigel B

22/06/2018 09:58:38

A further complication may be that some Emco machines used two speed motors - the first picture suggests that this is a two speed machine, as it show 1390 & 2700 rpm at different power ratings on a constant 440V supply. What exact model of Emco machine is this to check the specifications ?

The mill motor is single speed, but Star wound only & I know from (expensive) experience from an FB2 milling machine clone that the star point is not easily accessible to break out the other ends of the windings to rewire as Delta for 220V operation - the wires are very fine, the star point is made very close to the windings and covered by the impregnation, so almost impossible to dig out without breaking a wire off.

I would be looking at a static or rotary converter to supply a fixed 440V supply as the easiest way to get going - I seem to recall reading of people having problems with two speed motors on inverters, but have no direct experience. Or re-motor the lathe with a single speed motor & suitable inverter. The mill motor is a lillte more problematic to change IIRC - I think it is a non-standard frame or shaft size & the nominally "standard" nearest equivalent replacement either has a larger diameter shaft or housing & isn't a "drop-in" fit.

Nigel B

Edited By mgnbuk on 22/06/2018 09:59:28

Thread: Groz metal Bender
18/06/2018 19:21:25

Strange how old posts come back to life !

Like Trevor, my Groz bender has remained in its box (probably the best made part of the kit !) in a rarely opened cupboard since that last unsuccessful outing in 2012.

I have not been able to find out if the DDR original was made from better materials & intend, some day, to remake the too soft parts & poorly finished parts from something a bit better, or maybe get hold of an original if I can find one at a reasonable price.

Michael, I'm pretty certain the Groz copy is closely based on what was marketed here as the Carl Zeiss device, so would expect its theoretical capablities to be the same. When I initially tried it out on some 1.5mm sheet steel off cuts I was able to replicate some of the examples from the instruction sheet, but the poor materials and workmanship mean it is inacapable of heavier work. Quite a nice steel box, though !

Nigel B

(who never was much of a Shakespeare fan - "Slug" Howarth, the English master, saw to that !)

Thread: New Milling Machine - advice requested
16/06/2018 13:04:52

I'm not sure what to make of Optimum Anyone have one?

IIRC Stefan Gotteswinter on YouTube has one of the larger Optimums. Seems like a reasonable machine that he didn't have to do too much to to get it working as he wanted - which is probably at a higher level than most !

Nigel B

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