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Question re rebushing Atlas 618 countershaft Hanger spindle

Discussion in 'ATLAS, CRAFTSMAN & AA' started by Woodsman 22, Jun 5, 2017.

  1. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Hello to everyone;

    New forum member here and this is my first post (and I am a novice at machining). I was given an old Atlas 618 lathe by a friend who passed away and I have taken it down into parts for rebuilding/refinishing. The old countershaft hanger bushings (or bearings, if that is the correct term) were so worn and the countershaft spindle so scored and worn in spots that I ordered a new spindle and bought two bushings from a local bearing supply house.
    I pressed in the bushings and rigged up a setup on the lathe using an angle plate and bolts (Chinese 9 X 20) to hold the spindle holes/bushings in line with the lathe axis but the countershaft hanger slipped while boring through the first bushing (which I did by turning the lathe spindle -three jaw chuck attached- with a spindle crank in the lathe).
    I stopped there and checked the new spindle in the bushing and it was a tight fit, and "looked" straight, but it is off by about 1/16" when pushed over to the other bushing. In other words- the two bushings will not line up.
    So my question is; can anyone suggest a rigid setup for holding this oddly shaped piece (the countershaft assembly) on the lathe cross slide to bore new bushings for the countershaft spindle? I am wondering what kind of fixture they used at the factory for this job. And by the way, I used the hand crank rather than boring under power because I was afraid the reamer would do damage to the part if the part slipped while being bored under power. Thanks for putting up with my long post!
     
  2. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Woodman,

    Atlas built and sold at least three different T-slot cross-slides that replace the standard cross slide. Plus a round boring table that replaces the compound too rest. But unfortunately AFAIK only for the 9", 10" and 12" machines. But that's what you need to begin with if you are going to do boring on a lathe. Vertical position is adjusted by shims.

    However, if you buy replacement bushings from Clausing, so long as the countershaft hanger is not bent, I don't believe that any boring will be required. I imagine that at least in the day, these bushings were also stock items from Oilite. But what you definitely do not want to do is try to use solid brass or bronze bushings, even with an oil hole drilled in them. They will run hot and soon wear out the countershaft spindle. You should also avoid trying to ream Oilite bushings as the reamer will tend to smear and close up the pores in the sintered bronze.
     
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  3. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Thanks so much for that info! I went to a local bearing supply house for mine (they are oilite) and pressed them in. Spindle would not fit without boring those bushings. So I will try Clausing to see if they have them in stock. If so, I will press out the old/new ones and put in the Clausing bushings. By the way, my Chinese 9 X 20 does have a T-slot cross slide. It was my setup that was weak and slipped which probably caused the reamer to ream at an angle. Thus, the bores do not line up.
     
  4. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    OK. Stuff happens.:D

    Not having a 618, I don't know for certain that the OEM bushings don't require reaming. But I would be a little surprised if Atlas didn't design it that way. Designs only have to be done once. Whereas having to line bore every hanger would add an unnecessary step to the manufacturing process.
     
  5. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    "Designs only have to be done once. Whereas having to line bore every hanger would add an unnecessary step to the manufacturing process."
    - An excellent point! Yes, I am going to call Clausing tomorrow and see if they still have them in stock. If so, yay! If not, well I will either have to try to rebore the bushings straight or buy new ones locally again and retry reaming with either a .501" reamer or one of those adjustable reamers on ebay. Thanks again for your input, all info is very much appreciated.
     
  6. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    wa5cab;

    You were right! I called Clausing and talked to one of their tech guys and he confirmed what you told me. Once I press in the bushings that they sell (stock # 10-264, and they still have them) then I should be able to just slide the spindle right in. He cautioned me to take measurements first, but it should work. So the new bushings are on the way.
     
  7. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Another trick for this situation should you not be able to get OEM parts for some other job in the future is to first buy one extra JIC. Carefully measure the actual bore diameter. Install one and re-measure the bore. That gives you the shrinkage. Pull that one and use an oversize (by the amount of shrinkage) reamer on the bushings before installing them.
     
  8. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    "first buy one extra JIC" ; hmm... wow, I am feeling really obtuse right now. I sat here and looked at that acronym and tried to figure it out, but it isn't happening. So I have to ask; what is a "JIC"? When I find out, I am going to copy and paste that paragraph into my permanent notes because I just know this is going to be very useful in the future :D
     
  9. francist

    francist Canada Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Just In Case.... ?

    -frank
     
  10. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Oh NOOOOOO! Lol . Yep, now I feel really obtuse. I was thinking some kind of special tool or gizmo. I have been up too long and brain is just not engaged. Good night.
     
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  11. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Yes. And sorry, I thought that one was at least as common as AFAIK. Anyway, JIC = Just In Case. And in the present context, use of it would generally imply that you probably won't need the extra one but there's always Murphy's Law and they're pretty cheap.
     
  12. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Don't be sorry- I had mental blinders on because I was so focused on tools and procedures and not thinking internet abbreviations. And yes, Just In Case is as common as As Far As I Know. But, I was one step ahead of you guys on this one little detail- yesterday when I ordered these bushings from Clausing I did order extra only because Mr. Murphy lives in my basement "shop", you see :D
     
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  13. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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  14. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Okay; the replacement bushings from Clausing arrived today, and they are a bit of a disappointment in that they are too short in the length dimension.
    Following are the relevant dimensions:

    The original bushings (which I am convinced were replacements for the Atlas bushings) are 1.130" in length
    The replacements I got from Clausing are exactly 1.00" in length, so .132" too short.
    The new bushings average .6275" in O.D.
    - Inside diameters of the new bushings vary from .5011" to .5025" (I bought four of them) "JIC", lol.
    The countershaft bores measure o.6249" on one side and 0.6255" on the other side.
    I installed one bushing and the I.D. shrank to 0.4985"

    I then tested the fit of the new spindle and it did slide in with a bit of effort. Encouraged, I then installed another bushing in the opposite bushing housing. This is when things got interesting. That one was a tight fit- but... when the spindle is slid into one bushing and then over to the other, there is misalignment.
    Switched to inserting the spindle from the opposite bushing the misalignment is much less and almost wants to fit into the opposite bushing.

    Held up to a light source there is a visible gap, but not a great deal of it. Just enough to prevent entry.
    Since the new spindle is very straight, I suspect that the countershaft hanger assembly is bent. It cannot be seen with the naked eye, but I am convinced of it.

    Solutions? I can live with the too short bearings- there were many variations of this Atlas 618 lathe with several countershafts, so I suspect inventory is down to these particular bearings. But the misalignment is a problem that I am not sure how to solve. Ream the offending bearing slightly larger ? A touch of (fine) sandpaper to that side of the spindle? Make a lead lap to slightly enlarge the bearing on that side? I am out of ideas and would very much appreciate guidance.
    Thanks once again for putting up with all my questions.
     
  15. westsailpat

    westsailpat United States H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I agree with "ream offending hole" . The countershaft is not as a precision thing as your spindle . "When in doubt ream it out", don't over think it . Also on second thought , ream out both sides to give a little better clearance for the slight misfit fit and maybe like you say polish down the one side of the countershaft .
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2017
  16. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Yes, I was thinking that might be the best solution, although I was hesitant. Now... which type of reamer;
    chucking reamer, adjustable reamer, or should I just go low tech and try fine sandpaper wrapped around a slightly smaller sized piece of round steel stock. Guess I am still over thinking it :D
     
  17. westsailpat

    westsailpat United States H-M Supporter - Premium Content H-M Supporter-Premium

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    IMO it depends on how much over size you want to go . A regular chucking reamer might be hard to start or not . Is there a nice chamfer in the bush ? can you hold it straight ? One thing about the adjustable reamer is you can insert it small and then adjust bigger while it is still in the hole . And I would use a tap handle and oil .
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2017
  18. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    No chamfer unless I put it there myself. I am working on a lathe setup to hold it rigid- that is the hard part and very necessary for the chucking reamer if I go that route. OTOH, the adjustable reamer sounds like it might be easier to sneak up on a bore just oversized enough to run straight in this bent countershaft hanger.
    My mill is too small to handle a job like this and the only other option would be to use my drill press and I don't see how that would be accurate enough (I can turn the table on that press so that it is vertical with the spindle).
     
  19. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Well that all does sound a little disappointing. However, as you say, the hanger might have warped a few thou over the decades. What I would do, because it will (assuming that the shaft is the same diameter at both ends), solve all of the problems at one time and with the minimum stock removal, is to use an adjustable reamer long enough to cut both bushings at the same time. Grab the hanger in a stout bench vise equipped with soft or hardwood jaws. Shrink the reamer and slide it through both bushings. Slowly enlarge it until you can't easily rotate it with your fingers. Use only a T-handle tap wrench turned with your wrist so that you never put any side load on the reamer, If the reamer set has a chart showing how much the reamer diameter increases per one revolution of the two nuts, try to go in 0.001" increments. It won't take much. Go slow, because you can't back up. Keep both bushings oiled. The correct fit is a slip fit.
     
  20. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    Thanks for that procedural information. I have been looking for an suitable adjustable reamer, but most of them are huge. Have not been able to find one in the .500" + size range unfortunately. Not yet anyway. I never thought of putting the hanger in a vise to do this (thought it had to be precisely aligned between centers in the lathe). Anyhow, I have two questions for you:
    1) the bushings Clausing sent are too short by one tenth of an inch, will this make a difference in how it performs?
    2) After reaming, would it be advisable to drill a small hole in the bushings where Atlas provided an oil hole in the bushing housing?
    Atlas' reasoning was that being oilite bushings, they supposedly did not need holes drilled in the bushings themselves, because the oil was supposed to soak into the pores of the oilite bushing. I find this hard to accept
    and have the urge to put those holes into the bushings. Where does your experience and observation put you on this matter?
    I want to thank you and all those who have contributed their experience and help to me with this problem. I realize that it is an elementary matter to most of you, but you took the time to put up with my many questions and I want to express my appreciation. :D
     
  21. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    (1) No.

    (2) It probably won't hurt to drill the holes. One other member here reported that after drilling holes, the operating temperature dropped from hot after a few minutes to not much above ambient. I can only assume that the bushings that he used were sintered bronze and not brass. You will, however, have to fill the cups more frequently. If you decide to drill the holes, drill them before you run the reamer through. After the first three or four oilings, you might put a low density felt plug in the oil cups to retard the oil drainage rate.
     
  22. VSAncona

    VSAncona Active User Active Member

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    Personally, I would never ream an oilite bushing or drill a hole through it. I know people do both, but neither is really recommended by the manufacturer.
     
  23. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Well, normally I would agree about the reamer. But as the two bushings do not quite line up, he has little or no choice. I probably wouldn't drill the holes, either. But the main consequence there is that the cup will drain much more quickly.
     
  24. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    I finally managed to get the spindle to fit the new bushings by resharpening the "D" reamer I had made a few days ago and just kept at winding it through the offending bushing slowly, a (very) little at a time , rinse and repeat. The fit is tight, but I will work at it till I finally have it turning freely. At some point in the future I will make a new countershaft arrangement using pillow blocks. What it looks like doesn't matter as long as it works.
     
  25. wa5cab

    wa5cab Downloads Moderator Staff Member H-M Supporter-Premium

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    Whatever works. :)
     
  26. David S

    David S Canada Active User H-M Supporter-Premium

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    I have been lurking on this thread and learned something.

    For years I have been oiling the counter shaft oil holes on my 618. They are awkward to get at, or at least see, so I added a brass tube to each to hold more oil. However they always seemed to be full, and I never see free oil coming from the shaft interface. They must just be impregnated sintered bronze bushings and the hole doesn't go through the bushing. So I can take that job off my list.

    David
     
  27. Woodsman 22

    Woodsman 22 United States Active Member Active Member

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    You might want to take a closer look at the hanger countershaft spindle. If you disassemble the countershaft unit you might find what I found; the spindle on mine was badly scored from lack of lubricant and the oilite bushing on the side where the large pulley belt runs to the motor has been enlarged. Some years back I talked to a man with 0ver 50 years in the machining trade. He told me that he did not like oilite bushings at all. My belief (and that is all it is- I can't prove what I am about to say), is that those bushings are only going to work for a limited length of time. After all, how long can they logically be expected to hold the oil that they were manufactured with, and how can dripping a few drops of oil into an oil port be expected to soak into the whole bearing? The manufacturers state that the bushing can be "recharged" with oil by immersing the bushings into a container of oil and heating up to a specified temperature ( I don't remember how hot). Those instructions make it sound like dripping some oil into a port for installed bushings is not going to work for very long.
     
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