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Warco Super Major Milling Machine - Stripping Gearbox

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Lee Jones 625/05/2020 11:25:42
252 forum posts
125 photos

You know those jobs you wish you had never started!!

So when pushing the mill, the gears can make a tremendous knocking sound.

Being the inquisitive type I really wanted to find out what's going on. With a view to identifying any potential issue early and thus prevent any further, potentially irrecoverable, damage.

On my Harrison M300 lathe, viewing the gearbox is a simple matter of loosening a few cap-head screws and lifting off the top plate.

The Mill looked a little more involved, but not a lot more (spoiler: I was wrong)!

Remove face plate and dials:


Remove the motor:


Remove the 6 cap-heads and simply lift the top plate.

Ah, balls! Looks like the gears get lifted out with the top plate.

Have a quick peek inside, then put the plate back on.

After much; pushing, pulling, bashing (rubber mallet) and screwing (using them as a press, it went back on.

Put everything back together and forget the the whole thing.

Ah balls! The 1, 2, 3 gear selector has disengaged !!!

Re-strip - this time we need to go big. In for a penny ...

Taking another look at the exploded view parts list to locate all of the curclips and bearings.

Now we play a little game of 'jimmy up the plate and bash down the gear shafts' using pin followers (so as to avoid lifting all the gears out before I've had a good look at them).




Now time to drop the oil.

Ah balls! Dropped the plug and overwhelmed the funnel.

Oil everywhere. All over the floor and contaminated the cutting fluid system:


Gears out:


Nothing appears out of sorts. No worn teeth. Everything looks tight and in good order.

Time to put it all back together again.

Also think I found the source of the clattering. There's a plate at the back of the mill head which protects the screw. A little grub screw keeps it in place which was pretty loose:


Once we're all back together, I'll give it a test by removing it during a heavy cut.

Fingers crossed!

John Baron25/05/2020 19:27:38
512 forum posts
194 photos

Hi Lee,

A very nice breakdown of the gearbox and components. Thanks for posting !

That duplex gear just behind the spindle that is moved by the selector arm on yours is the one that was plastic on mine, the one that I replace with a steel one.

Lee Jones 625/05/2020 19:42:45
252 forum posts
125 photos

Ah yes, good idea. Steel for the win!

Phillip Slattery22/06/2020 08:47:55
4 forum posts

Great little write up and or warning :P

What do you think of the mill ?

Lee Jones 622/06/2020 10:08:24
252 forum posts
125 photos

To be honest, I don't have anything to compare it to.

It's doing what I require of it. Although it is still noisy during some operations.

Jordi Tomas22/06/2020 16:24:08
8 forum posts
12 photos


I have a chinese milling machine, whith the head as this one Warco, but with the round colum. And I would like to ask you if anyone know wich model is this Warco, in order to ask if is possible to buy the squared column individually?


terry callaghan31/01/2021 19:08:59
237 forum posts
10 photos

Hi jordi. Sorry but round and square column are totally different and nothing is interchangeable.

larry phelan 101/02/2021 10:54:28
1137 forum posts
14 photos

From looking at this, seems like a good idea to leave my mill alone !

As I said before Let sleeping dogs lie !! If it aint broke, dont fix it.cheeky

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