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Moving warco gh universal into workshop

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Jak2g28/02/2021 08:07:42
19 forum posts
4 photos

Hello all

I am planning on upgrading my sx2p mill to something larger and more long term. As with everyone, price and space is a concern. The biggest I can go is either a wargo gh universal or perhaps the warco vmc. At this point, my concern shifts to actually getting it in to the shop.

When the machine arrives it will be brought to my drive. I need to then get the machine up three fairly narrow steps. It then goes over around 10 meters of grass. Then, up a foot and through French doors into the shop.

I'm concerned about the weight issue. An engine crane will lift but obviously will not go up stairs or allow transition from grass up and over the raised door sill into the shop. The only means of getting it from the drive into the shop, at least so far as I can see, would be to break the machine down into smaller primary components that could be placed on a workshop trolly or whatever and potentially manhandled up and through the French doors. The final assembly in the shop could be completed with a engine crane.

Of this is the best option, can anyone give me some info about disassembling these mills. Would one be easier than the other? For the gh universal in particular, is it simply a matter of supporting the head with a hoist and then unbolting it from the back of the column?

Any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

HOWARDT28/02/2021 08:49:35
707 forum posts
25 photos

I got one three weeks ago. My pallet was placed in the garage were it was to be setup. With the limited height of the garage I decided to take it to pieces to allow it to be lifted o to a bench by hand. If I was able to have got a stand then I would have put wheels on that and done a lift on the drive, but I didn’t. The bench was a couple of kitchen cabinets and I took the plastic legs of them and dropped the cabinets on the floor, I don’t think even eight legs would be good for the weight. Any way back to the machine, I took off the motor before releasing the head from the column slide. I dropped the slide so the weight of the head was on packers mounted on the table before releasing the bolts. The head is very heavy, I managed to move it enough to drop it onto a soft padded area. A engine lift would have been preferable to move the head as I guess the weight is probably about 80+ kg. After that the table and column are easy to remove, you need a 12mm Allen key for the column bolts. With all that done it was easy to get the bits onto a bench, the column is heavy, probably around 40+kg but I managed to lift it as there are good hand holds. The last piece other than the motor is the head, I managed to pack this up to height bit by bit and get it in place.

I would recommend getting some help in moving the head, a couple of long bars and straps would enable you to stretcher carry it, perhaps three people would be good. Once stripped the other pieces would be easy to get in place.

not done it yet28/02/2021 08:51:24
5790 forum posts
20 photos

Of course, the obvious first port of call should be Warco. I’m sure they would be helpful - especially to make a sale! They should, at least have some idea of the weight of the main component parts - especially if you can speak with the right people.

The head may be removable by supporting it on the bed. Depends on how wide the gib strip arrangement might be.

Personally, I would try to avoid separating the column from the base unless absolutely necessary.

Shifting the crate may be easier than the bare base, etc.

Planks, to make an inclined plane are useful, as is a sheet of ply  for moving across soft/rough terrain. Pieces of pipe, used as rollers, is an effective means of moving heavy items - but be aware of tipping risks, etc.

 

Edited By not done it yet on 28/02/2021 08:54:10

Jak2g28/02/2021 09:26:55
19 forum posts
4 photos

Thank you both for the info. I think ill be able to make it happen. Howard: I've sent you a pm since you've just dealt with exactly what I'm doing.

Chris Crew28/02/2021 09:37:19
avatar
43 forum posts

Without actually seeing the obstacles you face, or the room for manoeuvre you have, I can only describe my own situation (which doesn't include steps) and how I overcame the problems I faced. If you can take some ideas from from my methods that would be the most assistance I could offer. (For the steps I can only suggest jacking the machine up level on blocks and barring it forward to the next step in stages).

My property sits at the top of a fairly steep drive. It plateaus out across the front of the house but the parking area is still on the cant. The workshop is a further 25 metres away at the back of the garden/lawn which is on an incline all the way up. For the smaller machines I have, i.e. a Boxford shaper and a Q&S hacksaw, I had lifted them out of a van with the aid of a light portable A-frame and chain block at the top of the drive but lowered them on to a pallet. I had acquired an old pallet truck in a local auction for £35 with the idea this would be useful for shifting machines By putting two old sheets of plywood on the grass I was able to drag each machine up to the workshop by dropping the pallet to stop it rolling back and placing the previous sheet of plywood in front for the next drag. When at the workshop, I was able to lift and lower the machines on to 1" round stock rollers and lever them into position.

But the main problem came when faced with moving a Colchester Student and J&S 540 surface grinder up there after delivery to the bottom of the drive by the machine moving haulage company whose Hiabb wagon wouldn't fit up the drive. As the drive and grass are contiguous and quite wide, I had to pay a local farmer to bring his Teleporter over to move the heavier machines up to the workshop by slinging the machines under the tines and driving up to the workshop. Again rollers and pallet truck got them into their final resting place.

This was all over twenty years ago now and time has taken its toll on my physical abilities since, sadly, so I have been given the most sternest of warnings by my wife that I must not shuffle off this mortal coil before her, at least not before shifting those 'damned machines' out and leaving her with the problem!

May I add this word of caution, but you probably know anyway, that machines on the move are notoriously unstable and can easily topple being mostly top heavy with a relatively narrow base. That is the reason I strapped them to a pallet to broaden the footprint rather than having the pallet truck directly under them. I learnt the hard way at a previous property with a Tom Senior M1. It was stood directly on to a then borrowed pallet truck and seemed to be stable enough on a level concrete path when myself and couple of assistants stepped away from it to accept some tea the wife had just made. As we were looking at it and discussing the next move it just sort of fell over side-wards tipping the pallet truck with it. Fortunately, it hit a wooden panel fence on its way down, breaking a couple of fence posts, so it was sort of reasonably gently lowered to the ground and landed on the neighbour's flowerbed, preventing any bent screws or cracked castings but which prompted profuse apologies and offers of compensation and repairs from myself to keep the peace. We had to haul it upright again with the A-frame and chain block.

Howard Lewis28/02/2021 09:39:31
4683 forum posts
10 photos

FWIW

I woul try not to disassemble the machine, if possible. You may not be able to reassemble to the same (hopefully ) degree of precision as when built.

My suggestions would be.

Leave the machine on the pallet., but wind the head down, so as to keep the centre of gravity as low as possible

Use the crane to take it to the bottom of the steps.

Carefully jack and pack until the pallet and machine can be rollered onto the top.

Lay boards across the grass and start to move the Pallet on rollers to the door to the workshop.

Beware of any cross gradients!

If the pallet will not pass through the door, lift the machine off the pallet, and use rollers to move it into the shop, and into position..

HTH

Chris beat me with the typing!  But wise advice.

Howard

Edited By Howard Lewis on 28/02/2021 09:40:51

MC Black28/02/2021 09:51:59
158 forum posts

A similar problem faced me when I bought my Mill.

I chose to buy from a company that offered to deliver to the bench in my shed rather than the kerb.

MC

Bazyle28/02/2021 10:43:16
avatar
5834 forum posts
217 photos

Do not let the moving aspects influence the choice of machine, That part is only one day and you have to live with the machine for the rest of your life.

Both machines look fairy stable when not on thier stand but obviously the VMC has more weight 'up top'. However it can be detached as a lump very easliy, but do not be fooled by the apparent size - the head on its own is not a safe lift for two 'strapping young lads' who may be able to lift it off but not safely lower it to the ground.

Beware pallets - they are desgned for holding a pile of loo rolls evenly distributed not a machine tool bolted to just one or two staves. Consider bolting to two 2x4 say 6ft long which will give stability for the pull up the steps with recessed bolt heads if you are using scaffold ole rollers. Provide sideways stability by more 2x4s bolted on top of the main bearers which can be taken on and off to get through gates etc.

Dave Halford28/02/2021 11:23:08
1395 forum posts
12 photos

The machine is new and comes with it's own pallet already under it, why would you need another?

Perhaps a 'Come along' winch or a Weston chain block could be used to drag the whole thing up to the french doors. Some creative blocking and the engine crane will get it through the french doors.

ega28/02/2021 11:37:06
2057 forum posts
167 photos

Has anyone mentioned the type of sack trolley which has three sets of wheels articulated in such a way as to allow the trolley to climb steps? This could make moving heavy components easier.

Unfortunately, I don't know what these gadgets are called so didn't search the numerous posts above.

Speedy Builder528/02/2021 11:39:34
2257 forum posts
170 photos

Visit you local weight lifting gym - ask for 4 strong men, 2 x strong timbers + straps and carry it up there. You can be the "Banksman".

Dave Halford28/02/2021 12:10:05
1395 forum posts
12 photos
Posted by ega on 28/02/2021 11:37:06:

Has anyone mentioned the type of sack trolley which has three sets of wheels articulated in such a way as to allow the trolley to climb steps? This could make moving heavy components easier.

Unfortunately, I don't know what these gadgets are called so didn't search the numerous posts above.

6 wheel trolley finds them, but the mill is 320KG those trucks carry 200kg

Oldiron28/02/2021 12:15:28
763 forum posts
23 photos
Posted by Speedy Builder5 on 28/02/2021 11:39:34:

Visit you local weight lifting gym - ask for 4 strong men, 2 x strong timbers + straps and carry it up there. You can be the "Banksman".

Those 4 men are probably very out of shape due to gyms being shut for the last few months. Also not able to help due to Covid restrictions.

regards

noel shelley28/02/2021 12:17:41
486 forum posts
14 photos

I don't know the machine but if on a stand BE VERY CAREFUL, it may not want much to cause it to topple, and once it starts to go you won't stop it. I speak as one who was trapped when a shaper fell over whilst being moved, I was lucky not to be crushed ! I was also lucky that 2 strong men happened by and were able to lift the machine to release me. Thick planks, sound bricks, short lengths of scaffold pole. or steel water pipe, a couple of 8 X 4 sheets of 3/4" shuttering ply and a couple of long wrecking bars should do it ! Or speedys 4 strong men and a case of beer ! At least it's not a bridgeport !!! Good luck Noel

HOWARDT28/02/2021 12:24:34
707 forum posts
25 photos

After putting mine in place I retrammed mine and all was good. There is a so called test certificate and the identical results were easily achieved. If I had some I would have drilled and taper reamed the column for taper dowels before stripping to get it back into place.

Chris Crew28/02/2021 12:40:18
avatar
43 forum posts

The type of 'electric' barrow that has the facility to climb stairs that some have mentioned is called simply a 'stair-lifter'.

Having had some experience of using these items when handling large and heavy pieces of telecommunications equipment, unless different types are available specifically designed for moving machine tools, I would emphatically advise against trying to use one of these devices.

The reason being is that the item you are moving has to be inclined to the angle of the stairs beyond the point of no return, although obviously the device is designed with stabilisers which arrest complete toppling. It does not lift the load vertically from step to step. We always tried to use at least four trained men when moving kit in this way, which weighed anything up to a ton, with two above and two below. Even with a team of this size it was always a struggle without its inherent dangers and every precaution, industrial PPE etc., was always taken. It was always a great 'heave' both to get the kit up the stairs, even with powered assistance, and also to stand it upright again once it had reached the top of the stair or its final destination. It was a task nobody looked forward to having to do.

ega28/02/2021 14:38:00
2057 forum posts
167 photos
Posted by Dave Halford on 28/02/2021 12:10:05:
Posted by ega on 28/02/2021 11:37:06:

Has anyone mentioned the type of sack trolley which has three sets of wheels articulated in such a way as to allow the trolley to climb steps? This could make moving heavy components easier.

Unfortunately, I don't know what these gadgets are called so didn't search the numerous posts above.

6 wheel trolley finds them, but the mill is 320KG those trucks carry 200kg

Thank you.

Without knowing the respective weights, I had in mind the OP's mention of dismantling and, hence, "components" rather than the entire machine.

Dave Halford28/02/2021 14:44:32
1395 forum posts
12 photos
Posted by Chris Crew on 28/02/2021 12:40:18:

The type of 'electric' barrow that has the facility to climb stairs that some have mentioned is called simply a 'stair-lifter'.

Having had some experience of using these items when handling large and heavy pieces of telecommunications equipment, unless different types are available specifically designed for moving machine tools, I would emphatically advise against trying to use one of these devices.

The reason being is that the item you are moving has to be inclined to the angle of the stairs beyond the point of no return, although obviously the device is designed with stabilisers which arrest complete toppling. It does not lift the load vertically from step to step. We always tried to use at least four trained men when moving kit in this way, which weighed anything up to a ton, with two above and two below. Even with a team of this size it was always a struggle without its inherent dangers and every precaution, industrial PPE etc., was always taken. It was always a great 'heave' both to get the kit up the stairs, even with powered assistance, and also to stand it upright again once it had reached the top of the stair or its final destination. It was a task nobody looked forward to having to do.

GPT might have had the patent on those Chris. smiley A bit like the MSH64 chassis lifter, bespoke.

Bazyle28/02/2021 15:39:37
avatar
5834 forum posts
217 photos

You might take the opportunity to look around your neighbourhood for any grossly overweight people and invite them over to move it. When they say 'don't be riduculous it is far too heavy' say 'now spare a thought for the ambulance men or funeral directors who are going to have to lug you out one day.'

Jak2g19/03/2021 09:16:10
19 forum posts
4 photos

Hello all

I've taken the plunge and purchased the GH Universal. With much help you you all, especially howardt, i felt confident the move could be done.

Now the mill is in my drive, and its a beast! I've managed to get the head off, but am stuck on something much less daunting (at first sight) - removal of the table. I've managed to remove the feed screw, but the table seems nearly immovable left to right without being aided by the screw. I've removed the gib screw adjusters but that didn't help. Do I need to remove the gib strip? There are two screws / plugs on either side of the table that look to keep this in place, but - if I need to remove the strip - how do I do this with the table in place? Is it a case of knocking it out with the assistance of a hammer / something narrow that can hit the side of the strip? Id really appreciate your help guys, I think I'm up against it with this one and the weather and its already spent a night in my drive without the head!

Thanks!!

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