The manual that came with the milling machine mentions that the unit
is covered in heavy grease and this must be removed by degreaser and
then a lubricant applied.
Can I use WD40 or similar spray as a lubricant for the milling bed ?
Also, The cutting speed guide for 5mm slot drill and aluminum works
suggests mill speed set to over 6000 rpm. The machine only goes as high
as 2500 rpm, would I just set it on the highest speed anyway ?
Thanks in advance
As asked elsewhere, what kind of machine?
However, I am going to guess that this is a mill/drill along the lines
of a Rong Fu 31 - mostly because I read exactly the same thing and had
the same reaction/question.
Way oil is going to be preferred - Mobil Vactra 2 is likely to be the
recommendation. The spindle on the 31 is more mysterious. The Yahoo
mill/drill group seems to suggest that it is pre-lubed and that's it.
Scares the willies out of me, so please report back if you get a good
answer to how to protect those bearings.
Again, assuming that you have a 31 or similar mill/drill, you might want
to go out of your way to get way oil on the screws themselves, not just
at the dial and way oil ports (near each dial and on the front and back
of the longitudinal table). You can see/access the longitudinal
screw/nut by "looking" under the dials and slightly up toward the center
of table - hope that makes sense. You will _not_ have to hoist the
machine to do this unless you have a very unforgiving bench mounting; on
a stand, it's in plain view. For the transverse screw, lift up the back
way cover, and there it is, at least on my machine.
I will do you a big favor and leave this to the experts :)
Enjoy the machine!
Unless there are posts to the contrary, start with 30 or so motor oil
instead of WD 40. Any oil beats no oil, but I suspect you will agree
that Way Oil is worth the little bit of time it takes to order it.
Someone else suggested chainsaw bar/chain oil as a substitute for way
oil, so you might try that while you are waiting.
I don't understand how your comment relates to my question regarding the
type of lubricant to use.
The machine is a manual vertical mill. Are you saying the model of mill
effects the type of lubricant used ?
The manual does not specify a specific lubricant, my assumption would be
that fitters and machinists would use some sort of generic lubricant for
Saw an ad in th' local (Shelton, WA) paper for an Enco 9"x20" bench
top lathe very reasonably priced. Actually, it's a steal. Went and
checked it out this am. Retired guy bought it new three years ago,
and about $1k worth of tooling, to build model steam engines. Wasn't
as easy or as much fun as anticipated so now he's into stained glass
Saw it run, checked out th' tooling, and it's not a bad little lathe.
$500.00 for it, tooling, accesories, plus a horizontal metal
cutting bandsaw! Prolly at least $2,300.00 worth of equipment, damn
near all brandy new too.
If anyone's interested, ping me... dunno how long it'll last.
This is th' lathe, no cabinet tho:
th' saw looks similar to this:
beefier wheels and a stronger handle on it.
Snarl... add 67 after my name and pull th' pin to reply
PS Insert usual legal disclaimers here.
Mike is very correct to ask the question. I have yet to see much
difference in opion on the ways, but spindles range in requirements and
punishment for failing to meet them.
To give you a good answer, folks will need to know "make and model". My
answer was based on the assumption of a 31-ish mill/drill.
You are right, I think the machine is a 31. The booklet has specs for 31
and 25 but the 25 has smaller motor.
My specialty is RF and data communications equipment and have no
previous experience with a milling machine.
I bought the machine to enable milling slots in small runs (usually 1-5
off) of enclosures for prototypes of our products. (small aluminum end
plates 2mm thick and small ABS plastic enclosures)
So far I have wiped the grease off the table using degreaser and sprayed
some CRC on it.
I can see a small hole in the winder as you mention and also see grease
on the threads used for winding the table.
Do I put that machine oil on the table (sliding part) and the winders
and leave the grease on the threads ?
Thanks in advance.
Bill Schwab wrote:
David, to be a little more blunt than the other replies, who are being kind:
WD40 is closer to being a 'degreaser' than it is a 'lubricant'.
Order some Vactra #2 Way Lube,
is as good a supplier as
any for this, apply it liberally and often.
If your machine is made in China, be sure to clean the casting sand and
other spooge out of any moving parts before you fire it up the first
time. That includes the miserable crap they apply where greases are
supposed to be - put Mobil 1 synthetic grease there.
Make sure your machine spins smoothly across the whole range of speeds
with no workpiece mounted.
Then get some chunks of known metal (6061 aluminum and 12L14 steel are
good choices) and start turning them into chips. You will learn enough
from that to know what to Google for. Have Fun!
I'm really not too terribly far ahead of you - in years using machines
yes, but in hours on a machine, no.
Two things spring to mind: never hold endmills in a drill chuck, and
learn about clamps and your vise. You have found a great source of help
in this group.
When you say "winders", do you mean the ball oil ports near the dials?
If so, I think that's pretty much the idea unless we hear otherwise. As
far as oiling the table itself, by all means, put some oil on the ways
anywhere there is metal/metal contact; a small brush is probably your
Good thing you told me about the end mills (slot drills), I would have
put then straight into the chuck. I think there is an Arbour that came
with the machine, I'll see if I can use this with the slot drills I have.
To change the chuck over to the arbour I assume you loosen off the bolt
up in the motor pulley and give the shaft a tap ? (this is my
interpretation of the pseudo English instructions that came with the
machine). When I put the chuck on, I just tapped it on the tapered shaft
with a rubber mallet. I assume this is wrong and I should
have loosened the nut on top of the tapper, press the chuck onto it and
then tightened the nut ?
If this is how it should be done, do I need to loosen the belts first ?
Thanks heaps for all the assistance, I appreciate it.
Bill Schwab wrote:
Happy to help. **IF** I understand what a slot drill is, you will want
to mount it in either an R8 collet, an ER collet, or anything else folks
here tell you is ok.
You will find two nuts - it's the small/top one, _not_ the 2+ incher.
You might need to hold the big one (an adjustable slot wrench works for
this) as a poor man's spindle lock.
But yes, loosen the nut on top :) The nut is part of the draw bar. To
avoid injury (still trying to forget how I learned this!!!), loosen
the draw bar so that it turns freely, but back off only a couple of
turns, not all the way. Now tap with the mallet (lightly at first) to
dislodge the arbor. Try to turn a little and tap (perhaps even with the
palm of your hand once it's loose) as you go. The idea is to release
the arbor a little at a time rather than in one big movement that can
hurt you or the table. Note that you still need to be careful once you
fully release the drawbar, but it will hopefully be fully released vs.
breaking away unexpectedly.
Try rubber and then brass if it's really stubborn. Confession: the
first time out, I had to resort to an ordinary hammer after furious
pounding w/ a rubber mallet. As I suspected, the "real" hammer did the
job with the **GENTLEST** of taps; don't over do it. In general, the
draw bar does not need to be very tight, so if you are having to whack
like a madman every time, stop overtightening the thing. Mine comes
loose w/ a rubber mallet.
Not sure I follow. IF I follow, the taper was in the machine, and I
would have preferred that you remove it as above, and then mount the
chuck on the taper. To do that, make sure the female and male tapers
are clean, then twist them together until they are about as stuck as you
can get them by hand. Turn the whatever it's called on the chuck to
retract the jaws into the body(!!), then put the chuck down on a piece
of wood on your floor, and use a mallet (preferably a dead blow) to
whack the arbor into the chuck; one really good shot should do it. If
you have only a metal hammer, use wood or something to cushion the blow
to the arbor; better yet, buy a dead blow hammer. Some recommend
putting things in the freezer, but given the advice above, I got mine to
stick on the first try.
Having been through that exercise, you see a big reason why chucks and
transverse loads do not mix.
Not until you want to change speed. The drawbar fits inside the
spindle, so the pulleys and belts are blissfully uninvolved.
Back to the collets, I strongly recommend an ER (probably 32) collet
set, if you can at all afford it. Rather than type like a madman, I
will refer you to
with the following search:
ER 32 collet chuck group:rec.crafts.metalworking
Long story short, it is a great way to the business end of a colleted
endmill and a chucked bit at about the same distance from the spindle
and therefore from the work. It also allows you to change tools
quickly, and closer to the work than you can w/ R8 collets. Since round
column mill-drills are not forgiving about moving the head, it is a
welcome edge. Note that R8 collets are much cheaper than ER.
Ask around here about endmill holders before you buy anything.
The slot drill I think is also called a 2-fluted end mill ?
It has straight side and a small diameter thread at the top (around 5mm).
I found a tapered "thingy" with the unit that I presume is the cutting
toll arbor. It has a long thin taper, a flange near 1 end with 2 slots
cut in it and a large threaded hole in one end (maybe about 10-12mm
If this is correct, I suppose the Collect acts as an adapter to screw
into this thread and holed the smaller diameter mill bit.
It looks like the entire tappered fitting in the machine now would need
to come out in order to get this one in. (tie. not just the drill chuck).
Does this sound right ? I like to know I'm on the right track before I
start hitting things with hammers.
Bill Schwab wrote:
earlier it was posted that WD-40 was more like a degreaser and that is
correct ,but another good choice to get is Lucas Oil gear lube it sticks
to parts alot better than oil and been around for years .
Probably, but I am not sure whether they are one in the same, or whether
one is a specialized form of the other. Whatever it is, if you put
transverse loads on it, don't hold it in a chuck.
You're losing me a bit. Try
and scroll down to Collets and Adaptors - anything look familiar? Note
the two collets and the endmill adpator have a common structure on the
top (facing away from you in the pictures). That's the part that goes
in spindle. Here's a boring head:
Again, note the job-specific stuff on one end and the R8 shank on the other.
When you say straight side and threads, are you talking about the R8
shank or the "business end"?
I think that's right. The collet goes in the spindle, and as the draw
bar pulls it up, it squeezes the endmill to hold it.
It sounds as though your machine shipped with an arbor in the spindle,
which makes sense to protect the drawbar. If there is an adaptor of
some sort in there, you will need to remove it to mount other tools.
Sorry to be vague, but I do not want to say yes too easily and end up
giving you bad info.
When in doubt, try to find a picture on the web, or post one and give us
a link. A picture is worth a thousand words, it might also save you a
thousand dollars ;)
That sorta sounds like a MT3 collet.
Do you know what your spindle taper is?
Likely it's R8 or MT3.
Yes, the drill chuck arbor is but one of the possible items that are
used in the spindle. The others include things like collets (most
common), slitting saw, flycutter, and boring head.
Yes, do as others have mentioned - back of the uppermost nut a few
turns, pop it with a soft hammer, and remove the drill chuck arbor. Once
you do that a lot of the above will make more sense.
Tell me about it! Had to muster up every possible ounce of reason to
walk away from it yesterday. Heh, I was gonna take my ElCamino but
th' battery was dead, so I took th' car. If th' truck would've
started, that baby would be here right now . Somebody's gonna get
a real nice deal.
Heh, our local rag comes out once a week and it doesn't take very long
to read either. Ads like this are actually fairly commonplace, but I
did do a double take when I saw th' price! Good deals to be found on
th' gas station bulletin board too .
Snarl... it's too windy for smoke signals