Do I need one - Surface Grinder

Having eventually sorted out which mill to buy I'm now short of
something to "collect", my thoughts have turned to a small Surface
Grinder (Eagle?), but do I need one? Do those of you lucky enough to
own one use it very often or is it an ornament in the corner? Would I
be better getting a Tool and Cutter grinder first as I still haven't
built one. As always any advice would be most appreciated.
Best regards
Keith
Reply to
jontom_1uk
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Oh you do have a lot of money to spend? Then buy one. But as long as you don't have the basic tools (drillpress, mill, lathe, shaper) what for do you need the surface grinder for?
I have one since nearly two weeks. It is an ornament at a *prominent* place, because it needs some work to work well.
Go to the T&CG and give him the money. Owning a T&CG isn't enough, it takes a lot of experience to set it up, sharpening tools is time consuming. I still think about building a Quorn, but just for special tools. I pay EUR 5 for a mill to sharpen at my grinding shop. And even as I don't have that much money to spend, I think the prize is OK.
Now you might ask why I bought the surface grinder. I stumbled over it and it came with me for EUR 400.- I couldn't resist, also because it was a vew days after my birthday. :-) I do have some use of it, but rarely.
Nick
Reply to
Nick Müller
Opinions will vary on this one :-))
If you have a regular use for a surface grinder, then go for it, but I have a feeling that many who have one only rarely use it, but when it is used it is invaluable.
T&C grinders are far more useful, but if you are a replaceable tip person then again it is just an ornament.
We have a Clarkson Mk1 T&C grinder with the reamer/drill/tap sharpening attachment, which we 'will' use eventually!
Peter -- Peter & Rita Forbes Email: snipped-for-privacy@easynet.co.uk Web:
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Reply to
Peter A Forbes
I have a small grinder, Dronsfield Eagle Mk2, and find it very useful. It doesn't take up much space (single garage shared with the wifes laundry) and i've used it quite a lot since I had it.
I re-ground the saddle on my ML7, together with the gib strips and saddle strips, resurfaced the boring table then the base of the dovetails before scraping them back in, ground flats on hard ejector pins for a fixture I made,and have quite a few other little jobs lined up for it. When I get one of the Stevenson ER spin indexers I intend to use it to do a little bit of basic cylindrical grinding on it too.
I have a 0.040" elastic wheel that can be used to quickly cut-off hardened stock once I turn up some new thicker wheel spacers to clamp it on the arbor. It's a very useful workshop toy really
The only downside is that I have no dust extraction and I have to cover everything else in the workshop before I use it, and be careful about cleaning up the dust afterwards.
I do like a ground finish on a job, but that's because I've got so used to it on just about every surface of the mould tools I've been involved with for the last 30 years.
My grinder was old when Gods Dog was a puppy and has a little bit of concave wear in the middle, so I can only get as flat as half a thou' or so on longer items, but thats usually more than good enough for what I need.
Peter
Reply to
Peter Neill
I treated myself to a Beacon Superior a couple of years ago. (Eagle/Capco size) I also got a DCE Autodrytex dust extractor because I didn't fancy me or my tackle eating dust. I don't regret it at all and the finish is very satisfying. I looked at the crank webs for my Dad's Clayton for example and thought 'did we make those'. On the cutter grinder front, he has a TCG so I can nip down to use it.
Steve
Reply to
Steve
Thanks guys, as always a good spread of opinion to inspire a bit of thought. Certainly appears to fit in the "nice to have" bracket. As usual I hadn't considered the mess it might produce and am concerned that my little Westfield might not be improved by being covered in grinding dust. Still if Peter can keep it off the wife's washing I suppose I can keep it off a car. As Steve says I'll need to look into a dust extractor.
Funny how I was paranoid about wear in a secondhand milling machine but hadn't given it a thought for a grinder. Would Peter N's experience of "half a thou" wear be typical or should I look out for much worse?
As Peter F says I have an inkling that this might join the pile of "I will use it - sometime" machines but I do like a good finish. Will a single phase grinder produce a decent finish? My only experience at evening classes some years ago was on three phase machines and one of those was distinctly worse than the others when it came to quality of finish.
Some interesting points re the T&CG, I think I would take the pay a professional sugesstion that Nick made if I was located somewhere near a suitable company. Sharpening drills/endmills etc is not a science that particularly interests me but to be able to do it must be pleasing. A little more cogitation required I think.
Thanks again to all
Best regards
Keith
Reply to
jontom_1uk
Finish is down to choosing the right wheel, balancing it properly, ensuring that the motor and pullies are balanced so as not to introduce vibration, and that the wheel spindle bearings are correctly adjusted. All these factors make a vast difference to surface finish. A lot of surface grinders have plain bearings for the main spindle, and these need to come up to temperature if working to fine tolerances - leave the machine running and reciprocating 'in air' for an hour or so before use.
Personally I am only happy surface grinding when using coolant - it keeps the nasty dust well under control and keeps the work at an even temperature. Although I do have a dust extractor plumbed to my J&S 540 I try at all costs to avoid dry grinding.
AWEM
Reply to
Andrew Mawson
i'd like to ask a question ! ive recently seen a boxford t n c grinder
it came with a wheel extension and magnetic base so it could also b used for surface grinding ! are these any good ? ive sharpened a fe cutters back in my apprentice days , but am wondering how good th machine would be for surface grinding ? (apart from size limitations !
-- willowkevi ----------------------------------------------------------------------- willowkevin's Profile:
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Reply to
willowkevin
Mine is single phase at the moment as I didn't have 3 -phase in the workshop when I bought and I swopped the motor over. However, I get some very faint surface patterning that I'm convinced is down to the single phase motor pulses so I'm going to refit the original 3-phase motor and drive it from the converter to see if it makes a difference.
The surface grinder mentioned here
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still available and more than likely will probably be open to reasonable offers.
Peter
Reply to
Peter Neill
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is still available and more than likely will probably be open to
Peter/Andrew thanks for the info it always helps with a decision.
Peter, thanks but I'm not sure I'm ready to jump just yet but if the fog clears I'll get back to you. When I was working the dream was retire to "wine and roses" and do just what you want all day. The truth is run about like a "blue........... " well you know what all day and getting nowhere. Several (many) weeks ago JG was giving me some advice on how to set up a newreader, just an hours job. I just haven't had time to do even that yet. Retirement, I 've never worked so bl***y hard. Off now to pick up son from hospital, then there's a funeral to go to then tomorrow........... well if there is enough time I might just get a few minutes to visit this forum.
Andrew, the J&S 540 seems quite popular but varies in price greatly. I had thought of a simple hand operated machine like Peter's eagle. Is there any great advantage to the powered table considering that it will only get limited (very at the moment) use. I'm also starting to get a bit tight for room is there a great difference in size?
Best regards
Run ragged of Wales
Reply to
jontom_1uk
quality of
convinced
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> is still available and more than likely will probably be open to
advice
For several years I had an Eagle hand operated machine with no coolant facilities. Did some good work on it but it was quite a chore - eventually automated it with landrover windscreen wiper motors which made things better. When I got the J&S540 it was like chalk and cheese. Hydraulic feed is so much smoother than hand feed, and also it can be left to get on with things while I am occupied elsewhere. I now find I use the machine far more as not only is it far less of a manual chore but the accuracy and finish attainable are much better. 540s used to command huge prices but in recent years ebay has seen some apparently good machines go for peanuts.
AWEM
Reply to
Andrew Mawson
That's kind of what I intend to do with mine. It's a pain cranking the table back and forth. At least it has an automatic feed for the side. Having once worked (just 1 day) on a fine "Jung" with all the feed bells and whistles ...
Nick
Reply to
Nick Müller
Talking to a dealer a few weeks ago, he says the drop in prices is largely because of changes in the export market. He reckoned that not many months ago he could get £1k for a 540 in almost any condition for export, but that suddenly stopped.
One point no-one has mentioned, so far as I've seen, is that there is a certain amount of overlap between T&C and surface grinders. You can do some tool grinding on a surface grinder (sharpening endmills is a prime example) and small surface grinding jobs on a T&C grinder.
Cheers Tim Dutton Dry-Dock Traditional & Modern canal craft repairs Vintage diesel engine service
Reply to
Tim Leech
J&L do jigs that will fit on a surface grinder. There's a neat one that uses 5c collets to hold the cutter vertically to sharpen the end, and another that does the flutes. take a look on thier web site. If I get round to re-wiring my 540 to single phase I'd like to get one.
Regards Kevin
Reply to
Kevin Steele
Thanks for the tip!
This one:
and this one:
Hope there are no session-IDs in the URLs (doesn't look like).
Don't they qualify for a project? :-)
Nick
Reply to
Nick Müller

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