What can't be restored on an older Bridgeport mill? - Page 3
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  1. #41
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    I love my Gorton 1-22. A heck of a lot of iron for what I paid for it. With a little help from the guys on the board here, I fixed an electrical problem with about $15 in parts and the Gorton is getting the job done. You don't have "nod" in the head like on the BP's, but I haven't ever had that be an issue.

  2. #42
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    My first mill was heavily worn but I could cut metal without breaking tooling and I learned how to make decent parts with it. I could afford nothing else but I only paid $1200 for it and I worked on it some and got it working but I never liked the mill. After 20 years, I found a very good B'Port 2J2.
    I sold the worn mill for $900 and was happy. I still have the 2J2 and am very pleased with it.
    My brother bought a worn out B'Port because it was cheap. It was so bad that we broke tooling frequently. Two years ago, I came across several B'Port in an online auction at a city school warehouse. They were 1960ish and had been in the warehouse for more than 10 years. I bought one with a 36" table, chrome ways and a shaper head on the rear. I put it in my brother's shop and moved the worn out mill to the scrap pile.
    I have about $1600 invested in this mill. The point here is: I have searched for good, reasonably priced B'Port for 30 years and have only managed to buy two.
    I have a 3rd B'Port from a friends shop but I have not checked it out to know what condition it is.
    I had better luck finding lathes.

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  4. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarbideBob View Post
    Not sure how you determined the x axis readout off. They work or do not, suspect abbe error but you can work around or fix this.
    I have very little experience with DROs - only the old, old, old (but still working) Accurite Mini-Wizard that came with the BP that I bought. This DRO has almost no bells and whistles - it can help you find the center, but that's about it - but it DOES have a way to adjust the readout to the resolution of the scale. If the readout is off by a factor of 2, I'd wonder if it would simply be a matter of changing the scale resolution setting - ??

    But as you and many others have said, it's a moot point - the machine the OP was looking at is not one I'd spend that kind of money on!

  5. #44
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    I recently went through the process of trying to find my first milling machine. I researched and considered all comers, but basically had decided to try and stick with a good used Bridgeport for a variety of reasons often discussed here and elsewhere. The main problem I found was finding a good machine that was reasonably priced within a reasonable distance from my home. The rigging and transport prices very quickly added up for paying someone to pick up and move the machine to my residence, especially from far away (i.e. where all the decent and reasonably priced machines were located). I also considered good Taiwan mills and still would consider them if I had to do it all over again. Especially the Supermax mills which really seemed to have a good reputation. I almost scored a Supermax at a great price, but it slipped through my fingers.

    I considered the rebuilding option, but again it came down to being close to a well known established rebuilder with a good reputation. I thought about buying a clapped out machine at bargain basement price like the one you showed pictures of here, and then have a quality rebuilder refinish the machine. But by the time you take into account the rebuilding expenses and especially shipping to my location, I was much better off just finding and paying more for a good used machine and going that route instead.

    Later I settled on a good used Bridgeport with a full sized table, power feed X axis, chrome ways, variable speed head and a DRO for more money, but the guy that sold it to me transported it to my doorstep as a part of the deal. And the machine is not clapped out, so realistically it's all an amateur/fix-it guy like me would ever need.

    One thing I would choose in a machine that should save you some money is to buy a step pulley machine instead of a variable speed head. The variable speed head machines command more bucks, but for you (and me) they are certainly not required. The step pulley heads run much quieter (which my damaged ears appreciate), and the modern VFD units allow you to vary speed of the machine quite dramatically on each pulley setting. Since you're like me and aren't running a production shop, you can easily deal with the very slight additional time required to swap pulley positions instead of cranking on the mechanical knob to change speeds. I actually wanted a step pulley machine over a variable speed head, but the machine I found had variable speed already, so I just dealt with it (and did rebuild the head to quiet it down, which cost me another $300).

    Good luck whichever way you go.

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  7. #45
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    My lathe and mill are both worn to shit, but they still produce good parts, finishes, and money when jobs come around.

    It can be harder to learn how to become a good machinist on a sloppy machine, but a worn machine can turn out to be very serviceable as long as the important functions work. I wouldn't sweat table wear unless you're milling long parts, in which case table weight and sag are of equal concern.

    Sent from my XT1053 using Tapatalk

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  9. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by crtten View Post
    I went to checkout a Series 1 J head today. ...He is selling it because he's moving out of state and does not want to move it.

    The owner wanted $4000 for the mill, vise, and some tooling. He agreed on the $2K price.
    My opinion: I'd encourage you to make low offers. Guys who have these seem to think they are worth good money. But I think most people don't want to move one. I wonder how many offers they really get. I think you should stick to your guns. I bought my mill, which I'm finding has little wear, for $500.


    Quote Originally Posted by crtten View Post
    5. 45 thousandths of backlash in X and Y axes. (likely adjustable)
    I was able to adjust this to almost nothing. Maybe .003". To get to that number, I split the nuts. You can easily tune these screws until they have very little backlash, but that increases friction so guys mount drives. My opinion is these don't need to be that tight. And I think I prefer to operate the hand wheels by hand. I think its good, especially for a beginner, to feel how hard the cutter is working. I would plan on splitting the nuts.

    Quote Originally Posted by crtten View Post
    7. The X axis had 3 thousandths deflection toward each end and 1 thousandth in the middle.

    8. The Y axis had .5 thousandths deflection toward the end nearest the column and 8.5 thousandths toward the opposite end.

    9. The Z axis had 5 thousandths deflection.
    Keith did these measurements to tune his gibs in the video you watched. I don't think these are a good indication of wear. I think you are almost better off visually inspecting the flaking. I also check to see if the oiler is functioning, if it has oil in it, and if there is oil on the machine. Almost better to see it before the owner cleans it up.

    On the saddle, you said the Y axis surface was smooth as glass but the picture looked like it was pretty scored up. While those score marks may not in and of themselves be a cause for concern, I think they may indicate a hard life. This alone might have sent me packing.

    That said, the saddle is a small part you could conceivably send away to someone. Not sure if anyone offers such a service without having the rest of the machine???

    Personally, I feel like the table is like the monitor of my computer. Its the part you really interact with the most. If it's nice, you feel like the whole system is nice, regardless of whether that is true or not. You can fill in cosmetic flaws like drilled holes etc. But if its really beat up, like chunks missing, I'd pass.

    I think you were right to pass based on the y axis scoring/wear and the rough table.

    I think BPs are the right machine to search for. They will hold their value better than the clones. And its easy to find parts, instructions, repair, etc etc.

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  11. #47
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    Splitting and moving the nuts shouldn't increase friction unless you're pinching both flanks of the thread. Leave .010" backlash and you shouldn't have any pinching.

    Sent from my XT1053 using Tapatalk

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  13. #48
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    Take your time and find a good one then repair as desired. I was extremely lucky got mine from retired machinist his home machine. Chrome ways perfect,table perfect. Servo drives on x&y. Anilam wizard dro. Two sets of collets,two Kurt vises,8" troyke rotary and a static phase converter. He just wanted it gone was moving by end of week. I gave him 300 because I felt bad taking all this stuff out of his garage I felt like I was robbing him. My best machine deal to date.
    Check govdeals.com they liquidate govrn. Facilities worth a look.

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  15. #49
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    Primarily what can't be restored is the ability of a Bridgeport to be economically restored. For the price of a full re scrape, rebuild of the lube system and head you can get a brand new clone for less

  16. #50
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    My 2 cents, but I'm 24 years old, dumb enough to try, and energetic enough to really make a mess of things 🤣

    Just kick back and observe the market for a few months (sounds like you already have a fair idea on the prices of these machines)
    When a machine comes up that looks good, go look at it. Oil in the oiler, and make sure the electrical all works, quick check of the condition of the ways and table and get it for the best price you can. Take it home, study it, clean it, fix it, tear it down, figure out how to assemble it again, spend all night on the net researching it, tweak it, try it, modify it. It's your machine and your learning curve, and the best way is to jump right in. Use your descretion when inspecting them for sure, but don't walk away from machines just because the chrome is worn off the Y ways, or a chunk of table is missing. Heck my King Rich KRV2000 (same as Bridgeport) has worn ways and the spindle splines aren't perfect, my Lagun mill is the same, but I make accurate parts, and good money on it and have my place in the local Machining industry against the big shops, because I solve people's problems with the equipment I have!
    Don't get too caught up in the broken record of "can it hold 0.001" all day long blah blah blah"
    Jump right in is my advice! Make some cash, sell the machine in a year and buy a better one if need be. 😎😎 Good luck.
    Btw I paid $1000 for the King Rich and $100 for the Lagun mill. Made that back on the first job I did on it.
    But I live in a heavy industrial area, machine shops everywhere, and a whole steel mill I work in to explore and pilfer old tools from the old redundant machine shops. There's always an old chunk of bronze around the old mill buildings for making new table nuts, or plenty of 3 phase motors around to play around modifying to fit my machines.
    Last edited by Themanualguy; 09-23-2017 at 05:25 AM. Reason: Spelling

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