return spring for rockwell quill

There is no spring on the quill of my rockwell vertical mill. I find this so annoying because the quill has dropped a few time
which usually breaks a tip off an endmill or puts a dent in the workpiece.
The mill has a lever on the right side with a collar that is 1.75 inchs in diameter that looks like a perfect place for a flat spring.
Has anyone added a quill return spring to a rockwell vertical mill?? If so, I would really like to hear about it! Otherwise I will invent something cause I hate trashing expensive endmills!
chuck
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What, it didn't have one originally? I have a hard time believing that, though I guess it's possible. A quill without a return spring is totally useless. I rely on the feel of the quill for sensitive drilling, which would be only one reason to have a return spring. With that in mind, if you end up clooging up something, remember you still want to retain the feel.
Good luck!
Harold
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My rockwell does not have a quill return spring and looks like it never did. My friend owns a clausing 8520 and it does not have a quill return spring either so I figured this was common practice on small machines.

Yea, and there is litte feel with the full weight of the spindle on a small drill bit. It forces you to hold the weight back instead of pushing the quill down.
Then when you are drilling a larger hole you have the weight of the spindle to help you push and it makes the drill jump through the bottom of the hole.
Still my major grip is the damage to workpieces and cutters when I slipup and the quill drops. This has only happened a couple times but it is so damn annoying that it is time to do something about it.
I looked in MMC and they sell constant force flat springs. I think I need a fairly strong spring and the strong springs on MMC are pretty wide. I need to determine the required strength before doing much else.
chuck
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wrote:

Maybe I missed it, but did you post a model number or a link to photos? I've got a small-ish Rockwell mill from the 70's that might be similar enough to get useful information from (as well as the manuals for same)
Dave Hinz
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I did not post a link but my machine looks pretty much like the rockwell milling machine picture at:
http://www.lathes.co.uk/rockwellmillers/
If you look at the right hand side of the head you will see the quill lever. I am proposing to add a return spring around the base of the quill lever with a flat spring to keep the spindle from dropping when the quill lock is released.
simple concept that seem common now on even cheap drill presses. Hey there is a source for a spring! chuck
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wrote:

Yes, that's my mill.

I'll take a look this evening. Does your email address work and can I send you some digital photos, or would you prefer I put them on a webpage? (either is simple).

I have the parts manual for the mill, can probably get you a part number if you think that'll help?
Dave Hinz
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You can send pictures to this address. Are you saying your rockwell does have a return spring???

I don't think you can buy parts from rockwell anymore, but it would be interesting to find out if some mills had return springs.
chuck
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wrote:

Checked last night, and it does not. My other mill (a small one) does. I was confused between the two.

Nope, sorry. Nice machine, though, isn't it?
Dave Hinz
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I have a rockwell combo vertical/horizontal mill. I really do like it a lot. Its just too cool for school! Power feed would be nice though. DRO would be nice too.
chuck
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On 12 Jan 2005 20:18:21 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@w-sherwood.ih.lucent.com (Charles A. Sherwood) wrote:

Greetings Chuck, The constant force springs I have used were all made to work with linear motion. For example: mount the spring on an axle and attach the end of the spring to the item you want sprung. As the item is moved away from the axle the spring unwinds while keeping a constant force on the sprung item. They don't wind up like a clock spring. When in the free state they form a tightly wound coil. What you want is a clock like spring. Cheers, Eric
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As Chuck mentioned the old Clausing 8520 knee mill (2/3 BP size) also lacks a quill return spring I've managed to screw up a couple of parts in mine when the quill dropped unexpectedly. Another 8520 owner uses a coiled compression spring over the drawbar between the spindle pulley and the draw bar nut and sent me one to try out. Seems to work OK but reduces quill travel from 3" to about 2" so I don't use it much. The spindle pulley uses spring-loaded plastic disks through a couple cross drilled, tapped holes that are perpendicular to the splined spindle shaft and these are apparently intended to bear against the splined shaft and impart some drag to resist gravity in its desire to drop the spindle.
A true return spring would be a lot better, methinks.
Mike
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