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Thread: Greaves Machine Tool Co. Mill ?
12-21-2007, 02:33 AM #1
Greaves Machine Tool Co. Mill ?
Back with another," would anyone in their right mind save this mill"? Found a Greaves Machine Tool Co. Mill. Was this a quality mill in it's day or considered an off brand? I could not find a tag of any sorts on it for ID. Everything is loose and turns free.
12-21-2007, 04:36 AM #2
Looks pretty solid to me here is Company info
12-21-2007, 07:46 AM #3
I don't believe they were off-brand, but to me the "Greaves, Cincinnati" on the overarm may have been a touch deceptive. I've owned two of them, and would take your find if it was close. A larger/newer Greaves was my only mill for several years. It had to go to a new home when I got the Cinci 420. Only complaint was low headroom under the vertical attachment. I owned a Universal version of your mill for roughly 5 days-my Brother talked me out of it, and is VERY happy after using it for a year.
One drawback, is that Greaves attachment never seem to show on e bay, and only an occasional complete machine.
There is a millitary manual floating around the internet for the newer version with feed motor on the knee. My Brother now has a sales brochure, and a manual for your particular mill. I will arrange to have copies made if there is interest.
I think they might call this a 2b mill, but I'm not positive. It probably has 5hp, and should weigh a freckle under 4,000lbs. The driveshaft/clutch arrangement gives rapid traverse opposite to the feed you have engaged. Likely made in the 40's.
I don't remember the precise language, but a blurb inside the cover of the Op Manual says that Greaves mills were originally made by the "Osterlein Company under the Ohio label." At some point in the 60's? Fay & Egan bought out Greaves, and later went under themselves.
12-21-2007, 10:36 AM #4
As sad as this might sound, I would not attempt to save it if it did not have everything there and fire up at least.
My reasoning is that you will be hard pressed to find parts. What if you get ever so close to having it operational and the one part you need is never found? Then what. Surface rust is one thing but the rust you show indicated it spent SIGNIFICANT time outdoors. That rust is much deeper. If water was allowed to cause that kind of rust, one can only surmise that it crept into every electrical component and has corroded them.
If you already have this mill, and you have A LOT of room, you may try to part it out over time or just sell as scrap.
This is one I would certainly pass on though.
I have a Cincinnati H Mill and it is not terribly old. Parts for it are un-gawdly expensive. Gears are several thousand dollars a piece. Just trying to give you some perspective.
All the best though.----Grant
12-21-2007, 11:39 AM #5
Reality is boring
It's pretty hard to spread old iron fever when realists' spoil the party.
If the mill was worn out or broke internally before it was retired I would have to agree, but if the rust is more from storage in unheated building/no oil coating it there may be hope. I'd take a close look before giving up.
BTW, the spindle should be 50 taper.
12-21-2007, 12:04 PM #6
What??? Parts might not be available??? Waaaaaaah
This is a Machinists Forum...
A Horizontal Mill can cut most feed quality gearing. Including its own gearing.
Parts are hardly available for ANY OLD IRON (Quality Big Stuff ...not Atlas, SB, Logan, etc......) So it all has to be found or made.
Most of the parts were made by simple Production Lathes, Grinders, and Horizontal Mills... Some stuff was Hobbed or Shaped, but even that is not a deal breaker.
If you can cut a gear and a spline, you can rough out parts for a final grind at a real gear shop. No complicated steel or heat treat processes here, just basic machine tool stuff...
Oh no its rusty...... 2~3 hours of busywork with Scotchbrite, steel wool, oil makes a a world of difference in apperance.
If everything moves, and you want it... get it.... If it is beyond fixing, part it out/Scrap it, no terrible loss.
It is not a High dollar item nowadays, but maybe in 100 years or so..
My pre 1890 or so Cincinnati still has rust on it!!! Oh well just have to throw it away and buy a brand new American made Universal Horizontal Mill.
Oh wait, they don't make them here any more, and most likely never will...
I think Torker has an OHIO mill he fixed up (related to Greaves)
12-21-2007, 05:17 PM #7
Let's not throw me under the train for some common sense here
First off, I am not saying one cannot make the parts...Finding them is going to be next to impossible on a machine that apparently was not made in mega quantities. That was my comment about my Cinci and getting parts for it. (They can be had but not easy, even on a common machine)...
Now, the rust...That is not surface rust by any stretch and this is not the ANTIQUE IRON forum...Is it?? I would not get on the antique iron forum and talk about the things I mentioned on this thread. Two different things.
This thread was asking if it was a good idea to salvage it. I say no. You say yes.
I resurrected my H Mill that spent years outside in the elements under a tarp. There was surface rust, not pitting rust that is as deep at the stuff I see in this pic.
Common sense has to come into play at some point in the ballgame fellas, and in this case, MY common sense would say "walk away."
Just my .02
Remember, the post is not in antique iron and he was asking for imput!
12-21-2007, 10:02 PM #8
Does it have a quill ?
Both ends of the spindle look almost like ......???
Heck , if the price is right and you take care in rust removal ....
don't get "too Happy" and defile the flattness......!!
You might be further ahead than one that stayed in service , and suffered
so much wear that every way is hour-glassed etc.
12-21-2007, 11:03 PM #9
My Cincinnati 2MI sat outside in a DRMO Gov't lot for several months... looked about the same...
The table, hand wheels, z and y axis dovetails , all the same thick layer of rusty grime..
Oil soaked cast iron cleans up remarkably well.
Can't see any .125 in deep pitting on those far away pics...
Would work fine with .125 pitting most places (threaded areas excepted) for occasional use..
Put a Bridgeport head on overarm and you have a very usable machine
12-22-2007, 06:01 AM #10
12-23-2007, 01:35 PM #11
I could use several parts off of it. If you do get it and decide to part it out.
12-23-2007, 01:36 PM #12
I do have a manual for that exact machine if you need a copy.
01-21-2008, 02:30 AM #13
Thanks for kicking this thread around every which way. Sorry to be just getting back. I have decided to pick it up, clean it up and see how it works.
Abarnsley---Thanks for the info on Greaves Co.
SVS--- It has a 5 hp motor so maybe a 2b mill. Thanks for the operational insite.
Jackalope---Thanks for your opinion and I will let you know if you were right. The mill is complete except for the tool shaft and everything turns. It has never been out doors, but has been stored in an unheated building since the company closed down in the 50's. It's going to be junked next week, but I will pick it up for 2 cents/lb. and hope for the best
Machine1medic--- That is what I am hoping.
Donald Harby---I hope I don't have to part it out, but if i do you will be the first to know. I would like to make some kind of a deal with you for a copy of the manual.
01-21-2008, 07:50 AM #14
It's good to hear you're taking the plunge Joe. You can hardly go wrong at 2 cents a pound.
I spent the Holidays back home so brother Bart and I had some quality time with his Greaves working on a couple projects. It's pretty sweet.