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Tom Senior s head alternatives?

Any ideas on how to improve the lack of cutter clearance the knuckle head has!?

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vic francis01/04/2021 09:08:06
73 forum posts
7 photos

Hi I am fond on the Tom Senior m1 but mine only came with the knuckle head, and though it works fine, it has limited clearance in use,I have seen bport milling heads grafted on, or the actual senior main column raised upwards, and various other ideas such as the Bartlett milling head which mounts on arbor support ( which is just not accurate enough due to droop!) nor has it a quill feed...

I only do light work but need more clearance so any ideas appreciated! Has anyone tried these far east milling spindles? Senior heads are rarer than hens teeth, some people just buy a machine for one!

The top of m1 is not machined? So any mounting on top is a bit hit or miss! I am not moving another mill ! Which would be the best solution....

Any ideas appreciated! Or what you have done!

thanks vic

Buffer01/04/2021 09:15:51
288 forum posts
123 photos

Some people have raised the coloumn up on a box or bought a scrap machine and taken a slice of that coloumn and fitted it to the bottom. They are getting a bit expensive now though.  I also have a large cube that I used to mount work onto then mill with the knuckle head on its side, in the end I found a vertical head. 

Edited By Buffer on 01/04/2021 09:18:29

vic francis01/04/2021 09:33:54
73 forum posts
7 photos

Thanks “buffer” yes I have seen that , its a useful idea about column raising... Yes you are right the senior head; I have had a few tries at buying one even buying one at ebay and then someone else buying it privately at the end ;I even considered buying a whole machine but the head was very worn...

thanks for your reply👍

Alan Jackson01/04/2021 09:54:44
avatar
231 forum posts
115 photos

I fitted a Dore Westbury head on my Tom Senior M1. It was covered in an article in MEW a while ago. It works very well and has lots of daylight.

Alan

head assembly - right side.jpg

head assembly rotated 90^ for horizontal mill operation.jpg

Alan Jackson01/04/2021 11:55:03
avatar
231 forum posts
115 photos
Posted by vic francis on 01/04/2021 09:08:06:

Hi I am fond on the Tom Senior m1 but mine only came with the knuckle head, and though it works fine, it has limited clearance in use,I have seen bport milling heads grafted on, or the actual senior main column raised upwards, and various other ideas such as the Bartlett milling head which mounts on arbor support ( which is just not accurate enough due to droop!) nor has it a quill feed...

I only do light work but need more clearance so any ideas appreciated! Has anyone tried these far east milling spindles? Senior heads are rarer than hens teeth, some people just buy a machine for one!

The top of m1 is not machined? So any mounting on top is a bit hit or miss! I am not moving another mill ! Which would be the best solution....

Any ideas appreciated! Or what you have

thanks vic

The top of my M1 was machined and square to the vee slides.

Alan

old mart01/04/2021 15:16:44
3312 forum posts
203 photos

I have been thinking about raising the Z axis height on the light vertical, but anything more than 1 1/2" would mean the knee running short of engagement. Also the length of the knee leadscrew would be a factor.

I see what you mean by the lack of machined surface on the top tf the column, I looked through the Tom Senior threads in the forum. There is still the overarm bore in the column and the flat face for mounting, but that still leaves the problem of finding some make of vertical head, and one with a quill also.

Buffer01/04/2021 17:00:30
288 forum posts
123 photos

Alan

I have just looked at your Tom Senior and your lathe. How have you got such a nice shine on all the bare metal parts? My Tom has that dull brown look about it and I've never really found a good way of polishing it up like yours.

Thanks.

Alan Jackson01/04/2021 18:30:23
avatar
231 forum posts
115 photos

Buffer,

I did spend some time when I first got the machines. I stripped them down to basic parts and I think I spent some time cleaning them up. I do use them though they are not just like that all the time, and the photos were taken after a good clean up. I know what you mean about the dull brown look, but I love the look of these great british machines.

Alan

vic francis01/04/2021 21:22:43
73 forum posts
7 photos
Posted by Alan Jackson on 01/04/2021 18:30:23:

Buffer,

I did spend some time when I first got the machines. I stripped them down to basic parts and I think I spent some time cleaning them up. I do use them though they are not just like that all the time, and the photos were taken after a good clean up. I know what you mean about the dull brown look, but I love the look of these great british machines.

Alan

Hi Alan and Buffer, thanks for the great ideas! Alan great work ! Lovely Design idea, I shall track down the mew issue! Your swivel head design is most useful feature as well. Thanks for sharing the idea.

old mart01/04/2021 21:53:26
3312 forum posts
203 photos

Try raising the knee up as far as it will go, that will give an idea how long the leadscrew is and if it can get a decent height above the minimum that any machining could be carried out at, then raising the main column is possible. A piece of 40mm aluminium would work, it doesn't even have to milled flat both sides to work. Holes for longer bolts would have to be drilled in it, I think they are 3/8 BSF. The base is a weldment made of steel, not cast iron.

Alan Jackson02/04/2021 12:59:37
avatar
231 forum posts
115 photos

Hi Buffer,

I have just found out that my article on a Tom Senior is in MEW 289

Alan

Dave Wootton02/04/2021 13:35:05
197 forum posts
51 photos

Vic

I've seen a very shabby Senior M1 with thick walled tubular spacers machined from round bar in each corner under the column, it looked awful but seemed to be working ok. It set me thinking that maybe that idea with welded in flat bar on each side could be an alternative to finding a solid slab to mount the column on and be dressed up to match the profile of the column.. Never got around to trying it as I sold the mill and bought a bigger machine mainly as I already had R8 tooling, but the Senior was a sturdy and accurate little mill.

Dave

old mart02/04/2021 15:06:45
3312 forum posts
203 photos

I would feel safer with a plate for the column to sit on rather than spacers, it is made of cast iron after all. I'm not sure of the size, 15 x 18 inches at a guess.

duncan webster02/04/2021 18:32:38
3447 forum posts
63 photos

How about a Warco 626 vertical head? Don't know if they would sell it as a spare part. Mount it on the overarm, or as that is probably too low do it like Alan Jackson above, or even a figure 8 shaped clamp to hold a second horizontal round bar to the overarm

old mart02/04/2021 20:46:43
3312 forum posts
203 photos

Heads are hard to come by on their own, there is a Bridgeport one on ebay at the moment for auction at a starting price of £500. You would need plenty of machinery and imagination to fit one on a TS.

vic francis05/04/2021 14:50:20
73 forum posts
7 photos

Hi everyone , and thankyou for the useful suggestions! The overarm mounting is not a route I would go having tried that wth the Bartlett head idea, when mounted on the arm droop is present! Centec mk2 head looked possible, just the drive motor issues and mounts; even a cl500clarke mill head... as mounted ontop of the M1 machine column.

Alan Jacksons work and solutions is outstanding; , and thank him for the pictures here and The mew article I now have!

thanks

vic

old mart05/04/2021 15:26:36
3312 forum posts
203 photos

You should remove the motor and look at the four motor mounts, could they be used for an adaptor?

old mart09/04/2021 19:26:39
3312 forum posts
203 photos

I have just this minute noticed a Bridgeport M head (MT2 spindle) on ebay UK, no. 174726011243.

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