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Changing a Senior M1 from Vertical to Horizontal.

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Brian H03/06/2019 07:54:23
1577 forum posts
104 photos

How easy is it to achieve the above in term of weight and awkwardness of handling of the vertical head?


not done it yet03/06/2019 11:52:58
4503 forum posts
16 photos

Not got one, but the Centec head weighs north of 30kg and is awkward and heavy, but I manage it reasonably well in a confined space (I’m north of 70!). That is locating it horizontally, not vertically. The Tom senior head (assuming you are referring to the S-type head) may be even heavier, so it might depend on how high you need to lift it to get it into position...

old mart03/06/2019 22:20:47
1532 forum posts
136 photos

Looking at the lathes UK site, it would seem that your M1 has the same head assembly as the light vertical.

The first thing to do would be to remove the motor, just the wiring to attend to, the locking adjuster and the pivot screw and derail the belt so it doesn't get caught up.. Then the two caphead screws holding the head onto the M1 adaptor, and gently work the head off of the spigot by pulling and rotating slightly. Lastly, the M1 adaptor. This breaks down the weights into three more manageable loads.

Kiwi Bloke03/06/2019 22:41:11
403 forum posts
1 photos

Brian, it depends on whether you're talking about removing the self-powered, quill-type vertical head or the non-quill, right-angled head (it also depends on how strong you are). The former is pretty heavy, the latter isn't. A decade ago, I could manage to manhandle the entire self-powered head onto and off the machine with ease, but a hoist seems safer, these days. The awkwardness is in getting the alignment right by 'feel', making sensitive, small positional adjustments, whilst trying not to sag or wobble under the load (which seems to increase as the task progresses), whilst balancing on some sort of step-up. Bad back = use mechanical aid!

My Senior is a late 'Universal', with the prismatic overarm. On the rare occasions that I have removed and replaced it, it was a sphincter-tightening experience to try to align it with the female dovetail, whilst supporting the considerable weight of the thing on my (well-padded) shoulder. I had visions of the end of a dovetail cracking off. Next time it comes off, it will be with a hoist...

Gary Wooding04/06/2019 07:02:38
669 forum posts
169 photos

You can make it somewhat easier by putting a suitably sized box, or some such, on the mill table, which can then be used as jack to raise and lower the box until the VH can be transferred between it and the mill. Works fine for my Centec.

Brian H04/06/2019 07:16:37
1577 forum posts
104 photos

Many thanks for the replies, very helpful.


Kiwi Bloke04/06/2019 08:34:39
403 forum posts
1 photos

Yes, great idea from Gary. Centec heads weigh nothing, compared to the self-powered Senior head! cheeky

Mike Poole04/06/2019 10:01:30
2544 forum posts
60 photos

If you want to change mode regularly it would be handy to have a swing away arm to just park it out of the way.


Clive Foster04/06/2019 13:59:10
2154 forum posts
73 photos

If you plan to switch heads on a fairly regular basis you will also need some simple way of supporting the head when off the machine. If that is indeed the case consider killing two birds with one stone by making a suitably sized foot plate having a vertical arbor matching the machine taper.  Effectively the turbocharged with nitrous injection version of Garys idea.

When in store the head sits on the taper held nice and stable by the drawbar.

To fit on the machine lift the whole kit and kaboodle up onto the table and adjust until it lines up. Slide to get it roughly in place then use the table feeds for final alignment. Release taper, drop table so it clears the spindle then remove foot. Job done. Simples and no heavy lifting if you have a suitable hoist.

A neat side benefit is that you can fit appropriate lifting points to the foot for the hoist to hook to so it goes up nice and straight.

Rule one of the vertical head designers union appears to be " make it sufficiently unbalnced that it won'y hang straight".

Rule 2 seems to be "make the shape such that its impossible to get a stable arrangment of lifting straps without obscuring the bolting flange".

I have such a plate and arbor combo in the slowspeed "as and when workshop lane" as the varispeed head on my Bridgeport needs to come off for servicing in the not too far distant future. Needs an extra support at the motor end but thats no great issue as its only off for servicing.


Edited By Clive Foster on 04/06/2019 14:01:02

Dave Halford04/06/2019 16:53:01
698 forum posts
6 photos

Pretty sure all of these were never meant to be swapped back and forth if you needed both, then buy two machines, hence the difficulty. Also you should be of a working age and know what you are doing.

As none of the above is relevant to any of us its all difficult.

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