I have given myself a hernia and a herniated disk lifting chucks and the gap section from my 16" swing lathe at work. (to save a few minutes getting a helper, now I will probably have a limp for the rest of my life.....dumbass) We bought a Skyhook, (which BTW is a wonderful tool), but I have not been able to figure out how to hold the gap section to lift it out. It is around a foot wide, 14 or 16" long, and weighs around 100 lbs. It has a hole around 5 or 6" square located near the tailstock end of it, which makes the center of gravity lean the thing over when you try to lift it, thus banging it against everything in sight, like the spindle nose, bedways, etc. Unfortunately, the leadscrew is mounted a bit too high to allow it to be slid out to the side without lifting.
Is there some kind of device available commercially designed for this? maybe some kind of clamp (like the scissor clamp for dragging pallets) to grab the underside of the ways?
Would it be safe to drill into the gap section to mount eyebolts? I'd hate to ruin the damn thing trying to fix it....
I have to take it in & out once or twice a week We will be getting a bigger lathe, but I have to wait for the beginning of the fiscal year for that. (bought a new mill, blew the tool budget)
Also, anyone care to recommend a good maker of lathes in the 24 to 36" swing range? Tool catalogs don't seem to offer a whole lot of options that big.
BTW on the Phase II QC toolpost conversation recently, we just got a 400 series (CA) and a bunch of toolholders, and the quality on it is great.