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Millrite X Axis Hard To Move

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wildo

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#1
I'm finding my x axis quite difficult to move, so much so that even the power feed bogs down a bit moving the table. I don't know how much resistance the power feed unit itself adds to cranking the handles, but this seems like it's far too much. I can't seem to locate the gib adjustment screws at all. I see the gib up under there, but how in the world do you adjust it??

I also think that someone clearly used grease in the zurks rather than oil; that could be part of the problem. I probably just need to pull the table off and clean it all up. But to spare me that battle- can anyone give me some info about gib adjustment? Thanks!
 

Bob Korves

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#2
The table gib is only accessible from underneath, the saddle and table have to come off as an assembly to access it. There is a lead screw adjusting collar under the left side dial. Take the left handle and dial off and loosen the nut underneath and see if that helps. Is the backlash in the lead screw tight or is that loose? If the handle moves easily when reversing directions through the backlash, then the table is tight and the table/saddle will have to come off for tear down, cleaning, inspection, and adjusting. The gib might also be broken or otherwise shimmed or jury rigged. If the screw is tight while reversing directions, then you have an issue in the lead screw, its bearings, or the lead screw nut.
 

Bob Korves

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#3
I don't know if you are aware of it yet, but the Alemite (zerk) fittings on your Millrite are for way oil, not for grease. If it has been greased it will need to be torn down and cleaned up.
 

wildo

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#4
Thanks for the info Bob! I'm going to look into the stuff you mentioned when I get home from work. That's exactly the details I needed in order to see if the problem is in the screw (something I didn't even consider) or the gib. Great stuff!

Regarding the Alemite fittings (again- thanks for the clarification on that) I did know that they are for oil, though I'm pretty sure the previous owner didn't know that. One thing that I don't know though is how are you supposed to use them? Is there an "oil gun" that works like a grease gun? Since the fitting is there, I assume there must be something that hooks to it for oiling.
 

Bob Korves

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#5
You can buy this one:
http://www.icai-online.com/push-n-lube-oiler.html
It does not hold very much oil, but it works well.

There is this Alemite one:
http://www.mscdirect.com/product/de...&mkwid=s7aARg7kR|dc&pcrid=13476286250&src=pla
which can be had cheaper than MSC, but still WAY too pricey for my tastes, ~$200+

You can buy a grease gun and then modify it for holding oil without leaking, Easier said than done, and I am still tweaking the HF grease gun I modified...

Seriously though, if there is grease in the ways the machine should be taken apart and cleaned up, all the oil passages cleared, and then oiled and reassembled.
 

wildo

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#6
No real surprise here; you were spot on Bob. The backlash was not exactly "free" but it certainly wasn't "tight" either. I knew some idiot blasted this thing full of grease, so... sigh... off comes the table.
IMG_7832_zpsgsus9ajt.jpg

It took some head scratching to figure out how to get the saddle off, but once I figured out how to pull the lead screw out everything was smooth sailing.
IMG_7833_zpsxk7eyha9.jpg

The ways are indeed covered in some sticky grease that will need cleaned up. It's no wonder it was so hard to slide the table. This grease is REALLY sticky! The scraping (or is that more properly called "flecking" -I'm not sure the difference) looks really good on the bottom of the table:
IMG_7834_zpsan7c1yr6.jpg

IMG_7835_zpsdrkf7mok.jpg

But the ways on the saddle itself show some of the scraping has worn off:
IMG_7836_zpsghu7ulh0.jpg

I'll get this stuff soaked in Purple Power and start the cleanup task.
 

Bob Korves

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#7
That is flaking, and you have a very nice mill, which I expected from the other photos. The saddle shows more wear than the table, how about a pic of the top of the knee ways? Hate to say it, but take the knee off, too, while you have the hoist there, and get the gunk out of it, too. You will be a lot happier with everything clean and oiled and adjusted properly. While you have the knee off and the turret loose, try to work some oil into the turret joint as well. Damned poor job that can't afford a supervisor... 8^)
 

wildo

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#8
Man those supervisors... always on my back! ;)

I had planned on removing the knee as well. It's only one more axis- and like you said, I already dragged the hoist in here; might as well get it all done right.

Table is getting a Purple Power bath:
IMG_7837_zpsbzndn6jt.jpg

Here are pics of the knee after a quick wipe down:
IMG_7839_zpsfwm3vfzx.jpg

IMG_7840_zpskgeleugf.jpg

IMG_7841_zpsxpkrs60h.jpg
 

Bob Korves

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#9
The Y axis does not look scored and does not seem to show lack of lubrication or scoring from trash trapped in the ways. It looks like it was used for a production job that pretty much only used the Y axis. It looks like honest wear, and evenly distributed. The Z also looks mostly unused from what I can see of it as well.
 

wildo

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#10
Made some progress on correcting this problem. I did go ahead and remove the knee, clean the oil ports, degrease the ways and all drive train. That sure was a chore and I'm beat!

Got the knee off:
IMG_7870_zpsazpuoeyq.jpg

Knee ways cleaned up:
IMG_7872_zps3g39h3uk.jpg

Knee drive shaft cleaned up:
IMG_7874_zpszrl7qdr5.jpg

Knee acme thread cleaned up:
IMG_7875_zpserewmupw.jpg

Column z ways cleaned up:
IMG_7877_zps6cqzn1x4.jpg

And finally the knee back on:
IMG_7879_zpswsletax1.jpg

Tomorrow I will tackle finishing the cleaning of the saddle and table components. Funny- I was supposed to be cleaning the house and instead I find myself cleaning the mill! The z-axis travel is considerably smoother now and I'm excited to see how the x-axis cleans up. It was quite difficult to move...
 

wildo

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#11
More progress on the mill.

Table ways cleaned up and looking good; I see just about no wear!
IMG_7881_zpsrslrqdh1.jpg

IMG_7883_zps4mrvm1bf.jpg

The saddle x-axis ways also look great. Nice and smooth, no scoring. I don't see any indication that these ways had flaking on them, therefore once again I see no real signs of wear at all.
IMG_7888_zps5maj4boy.jpg

The y-axis ways on the saddle did show some wear, and some minor scoring. I suspect that the grease that was injected in there trapped some particles and caused the scoring. I'm sure Bob is also correct that this was likely a production mill that saw movement in just about only the y-axis.
IMG_7884_zpsphtkohna.jpg

IMG_7885_zps94nvicys.jpg

IMG_7886_zpsrnj4fcv0.jpg

IMG_7887_zps6kqqajmm.jpg

I went ahead and lightly stoned down the scoring once again using my ultra fine ceramic stone:
IMG_7891_zps7ydwrfji.jpg

I have most all the other components degreased now. Hopefully I'll wrap this up tomorrow, though I'm not sure I'll get to it.
 

wildo

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#12
Priorities, priorities... unfortunately I hit my time limit for the mill for this week. I'll have to pick this up next week, but for now I'm in a good stopping point. While I had these components apart, I took the opportunity to polish up some stuff. The gib lock handles are done, but the rest of the handles still need a nice polish.
IMG_7897_zps8r8cyvq4.jpg

The table had quite a few nicks in it, so I stoned it in a crosshatch pattern with a new norton coarse/fine stone.
IMG_7894_zpswzktw7sr.jpg

And finally- all the major components have been reassembled:
IMG_7893_zpsdxgrmjnw.jpg

The table movement in all directions is SMOOTH and fluid. I'm excited to get the hand wheels reinstalled and see how it goes. I got the gib adjustment as good as I could, but I'll use an indicator once the hand wheels and acme threads are fully installed. I paint stripped the table endcaps and plan on repainting them before installation. So a bit more work left to do, but I have a commitment for the rest of the week that will take me out of the shop. Overall- I think while this has been a LOT of work, the mission of this thread is complete. The table movement is much more free and I'm happy to know the state of the ways. I'm also happy to know that the proper lubrication is now in place. Given my SB 9a restoration and now the work on this- I will never understand why these old machines are packed full of grease and/or used motor oil...
 

Bob Korves

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#13
It is a good idea to install way wipers and/or way covers to help keep the chips out of the ways. I bought some way covers for my Millrite but have not installed them yet, while I am trying to decide about a 3 axis DRO install. I installed a rehabbed old Servo X axis power feed and am waiting on mounting the limit switches for it for the same reason. I want to have a clean and useful installation with the absolute minimum loss in Y axis travel, and no lost functionality. I want to keep the hard table stops and also add the soft power feed stops, plus the way covers, plus the DRO, plus perhaps way wipers. There needs to be a plan to make that all work out in the end. There are plenty of options and trade offs. I have another old Servo power feed to rehab and put on the Y axis, which will extend the Y lead screw and the Y hand wheel about 2-1/2" farther away from the table, which will help a lot at minimizing compromises. Right now the hand wheel stops the Y travel, with still another half inch of lead screw unused.
 
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