Looking at a getting a Bridgport mill, '73 vintage with 42" table and variable speed head. Unit it sitting in a garage with easy access, need to transport it 20 miles, then get it down 3 steps into the shop. I presume this thing weighs in at about 2000 pounds with a ugly top heavy weight distribtion.
Plan is to lower table, tilt head upside down to get some clearance and to lower the center of gravity. Then jack it up and bolt it to a 4'x6' skid made of 4x4 posts 6' long and 2x12 cross pieces. With some beveled ends, I can easily skid it out of the garage and up onto a low trailer. (9000 pound winch on the Jeep is handy)
To get it into the shop with a 36" wide doorway I need to pull the table. Unbolt the power feed and cranks, unscrew the lead screw, and slide it out sideways. (??? Am I missing something here?)
How bad is it to unbolt the head and handle that seperately? I have a hoist to make it easy to grab and lift it off. Getting it back on would be a bit more challenging. How much does the head weigh? Does it lower the top heavy weight enough to make it safer to do the 3 steps down?
I have plenty of ropes, chains, straps, 3 come alongs, timbers, planks,1-1/2" pipe rollers, 1/2" pipe rollers, etc plus a healty respect for heavy objects so I'm just looking for comments specific to a Bridgeport.