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All things Beaver Mill

An open thread for anyone owning or working on. a Beaver Mill

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Lex Davis27/02/2020 23:37:10
27 forum posts
9 photos

You are correct Mark,the N9126 bearings were a special size made specifically for the Beaver milling machine.

It's a pity that the Beaver manuals did not keep up with the changes made to the various models over the years, the manual that I have does not show these bearings at all and other parts are completely different to what is shown in the manual.

Mike the Bike05/04/2020 07:44:16
16 forum posts

I have a VBRP Mk 2 which is missing the taper dowels for head location and I wonder if anyone could give me the taper dimensions so that I can make 2. The drawing in the manual shows it to be a much steeper taper than normal for a taper pin. ? Anybody got a spare one? or a drawing which gives dimensions?

Thanks, Mike

Alf Scotting05/04/2020 09:40:54
2 forum posts


couldn't wait till tomorrow, dimensions measured with digital vernier are :-

O/a. tapered section 1.89"

small end dia. .369"

large end dia. .410"

Thread is 3/8" BSW x 5/8" lg.

There is only one of them and it is on the L.H. side ?

Cheers Alf

DC31k05/04/2020 09:50:48
586 forum posts
1 photos


I have sent you a private message.


There are two pins, one for 'swivel' and one for 'nod'.

They are both standard imperial taper pin specification of 1:48 on diameter.

Threads are unlikely to be Whitworth form given that the nut that fits on the pin is 9/16" A/F and the rest of the machine uses UNC/UNF fasteners.

Mark Rand05/04/2020 18:09:54
1137 forum posts
15 photos

I have wondered about fitting tapered alignment pins to my Mk1 along the lines of the Mk11, but aren't sure as yet how repeatable the other parts of the nod/swivel arrangements are even if they seem to be a good fit still.

Out of curiosity, where does the swivel pin live?

DC31k05/04/2020 20:01:30
586 forum posts
1 photos
Posted by Mark Rand

Out of curiosity, where does the swivel pin live?

Bottom left side of head.

If you look at page 12 at:

the black dot just below the end of the spanner is the pin hole.

It is difficult to find Beaver pictures taken from this side of the machine.

(if link does not work, go to usinages forum, find the manuals section, download the Beaver brochure)

Edited By DC31k on 05/04/2020 20:01:49

Mark Rand05/04/2020 22:00:15
1137 forum posts
15 photos

Thanks for that. Never spotted it in other pictures I've seen of the Mk11 for some reason!

Brian Skidmore 116/04/2020 07:37:17
7 forum posts

Hi my Name is Brian Skidmore, I have a question about a VBRP mk1 Beaver turret mill I’m rebuilding head on for a friend. Have already found this forum very useful source of info regarding spindle bearings ect. My question is about belt box , there are two angular contact bearings that the front pulley runs on , I have made a new dog clutch shaft that engages back gear . And on this machine there is no spacer to control preload on angular contact bearings. I have made a new nut with locking system to control and set preload but am now wondering weather or not there may have been a spacer between these bearings, the machine has undoubtedly been apart in past and I wonder weather it may have been left out. I’m hoping one of mbrs of this forum may have had experience of this part of machine , as you are probably aware there are now parts diagrams of mk 1 .
looking forward to hearing any reply’s . Many thanks , Brian.

Lex Davis17/04/2020 10:16:53
27 forum posts
9 photos

I can't help with that one Brian.

Regards, Lex.

Kevin Ellis30/04/2020 10:53:45
1 forum posts

Hi, I'm new to this forum, I have a Mk1 Beaver VBRP, I had the head motor converted from star to delta a few years ago running from a single phase to three phase using an inverter. With the price of inverters having significantly reduced now due to the Chinese manufactured units, I have just fitted one to my table feed, but find the gearbox quite noisy! So will need to look at stripping and rebuild, I have a mk2 manual but unfortunately have not been able to find a copy of mk1 anywhere, just wondered if anyone might be able to help. I am happy to share any information I have from the Mk2 manual if anyone's requires it.



Lex Davis13/06/2020 01:14:11
27 forum posts
9 photos

I have finally had a chance to remove the bearings from my spindle and I am not impressed with what I found. Someone has obviously been in there before and really made a mess of it. The outer bearing spacer has been surface ground to about .005" less than the inner spacer and both spacer are out of parallel by at least .001".

There were also burrs and dings everywhere, not to mention that the two top locknuts were loose.

There are no actual seals on this spindle just a type Labyrinth setup at each end.

beaver spindle (2).jpg

Brian Skidmore 113/06/2020 09:24:21
7 forum posts

Hi Dave,

just seen four findings on striping the spindle on your beaver mk1 , . I can imagine very frustrating. But hopefully recoverable . I fitted new spindle bearings to the one I’m rebuilding for a friend and was lucky just a bit of fretting on bearing spacers where the top lock nut had also been loose at some point , I cleaned them up on my 540 J&S , I don’t yet have a rotary grinding fixture so had to do them linear ,gave them a very light clean up Together , I fitted new bearings of type mentioned on this forum and so far have been very pleased with result . Regarding belt box bearings and lack of thrust control spacer, I ended up making one as I came to the conclusion that there must have been one originally and also made a much more beefier lock nut fitted with Soft pads under grubs screw to prevent loosening and Damage to thread on pulley shaft. Found issue with bull gear not coming into full mesh with pinion witch judging by wear patern on teeth had probably been run for some time in this condition and making back gear quite noisey. This issue was solved by use of shims on pulley shaft to change alignment and also increasing depth of dimple that detent ball locates in on sliding bull gear.(I found considerable wear on dimple allowing gear to float and not positively hold in position by detent ball) after this was sorted bull gear now locates in full mesh and now runs considerably quieter especially at higher rpm or back gear.If your machine is noisy , I would advised checking the bull gear is in full mesh.i could imagine this could be an issue on these BVRP mk1’s. hope you manage to work around issues you have found Dave.

ps any luck finding any literature or parts diagrams on these mk1’s?

best regards,Brian.

Lex Davis14/06/2020 13:11:16
27 forum posts
9 photos

Hi Brian, the Bull Gear etc will be the next area that I delve into, I wonder what I will find in there. My machine is a Mk2 so I don"t have any info on the Mk1.

I have now realized that the bearings were set up in the DF configuration but from the information in various bearing books I have decided to set them up as DB and after grinding the spacers in small stages I am now at a point where the 2 spacers are nearly identical in height and preload is nearly correct which brings me to believe that this is the way they were intended to be fitted.




hoffman brg. (2).jpg


Edited By Lex Davis on 14/06/2020 13:38:09

Lex Davis23/06/2020 13:37:46
27 forum posts
9 photos

I now have a small amount of preload on the bearings with the inner spacer now measuring .0031" (80 microns) less than the outer spacer. I don't think that these bearings were a matched set of Duplex bearings with the correct amount of offset ground into the faces.

Lex Davis25/06/2020 09:19:33
27 forum posts
9 photos

This is the Bearing Preload Fixture that I made to simulate fitting the bearings and spacers into the Quill/Spindle assembly. It allowed me to quickly determine the difference in spacer height required. I found that a small change in spacer height (3 microns) makes a big difference to the torque needed to rotate the bearing assembly.

bearing preload fixture 1 (2).jpg

bearing preload fixture 2 (2).jpg

Lex Davis18/08/2020 10:05:53
27 forum posts
9 photos

The spindle is back together and feels quite good, I have it set up on my lathe ready to regrind the #40 taper with a Toolpost Grinder.

beaver spindle (2).jpg

Mark Rand18/08/2020 21:49:09
1137 forum posts
15 photos

Put my Mk1 VBRP head back together yesterday with its replacement five-speed poly-V pulleys. Top speed is now 4000 rpm. face 1

I've almost finished making a new drive bush (the bit that has the internal spline to drive the spindle). Just got to turn a groove on it to locate the back gear. The original appears to have been a soft steel and the splines are worn to the point that there is 9° of play. This made interrupted cuts noisy and destructive.

A new back gear pinion is also being fettled, since the replacement I put in a few years ago has been wrecked by the hammering.

The replacements are EN24T, but I'll be sending them off for nitriding as well.

Lex Davis20/08/2020 07:21:34
27 forum posts
9 photos

Any photos Mark, I think I will need to make a new splined bush as well.

Mark Rand20/08/2020 21:51:20
1137 forum posts
15 photos

Didn't get around to taking photos when making it, so I'll have to mock it up. laugh

I do have the advantage of having a slotting head and a rotary table for the cutting of the splines.

Has your's got noticable rotational play? Mine had about 9°, which is enough to be a real problem on heavy cuts...

Lex Davis21/08/2020 07:38:48
27 forum posts
9 photos

I didn't take much notice when I took the Quill assembly out Mark, but I did notice that there were burrs on the driven side of the splndle spline which I had to stone off. I have almost finished regrinding the spindle taper now so I will check the fit of the splines when I put it back together soon.


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