Post By 4GSR
Post By thermite
Index model 55 milling machine
Ok guys, another dumb ass question but when you don't know you ask people who do. I just got my 60 year old mill in the door and started the clean up.
I contacted Wells-Index and they responded by telling me the first shipping date (7/30/1952) price ($2,842.88) and who it was shipped to. Here's what I need to know. How do I remove the collet?
The draw bar has a 3/8" square drive and below that on the quill are two flats for a wrench. Which way to loosen and which to tighten? The machine has a #9 B&S taper.
I've tried both ways and I think I have the dreaded stuck collet.
Not dumb ass at all, asking is brilliant compared to mucking around and messing things up.
The draw bar thread into the B&S collet is right hand so CCW (looking from above) to loosen the drawbar. Keep going that direction and the drawbar will apply an ejection force to the collet, apply torque, maybe 20 lb-ft max. You can use a backup wrench on the two flats on the quill. Still no joy? Apply a blow on the end of the drawbar with a lead hammer (don't substitute, use a lead hammer).
If it still doesn't come out we can talk about a "stuck collet" and how to remove one. Never seen one that couldn't be removed but apply the simple steps above first.
This brings back memories from 40+ years ago. There was always a lead hammer at hand with the Index 55.
If you look at the front of the head at the bottom of the
pulley guard there should be a pin sticking down that
you push up to lock the pulley/spindle
there is only one hole in the pulley its all the way thru the pulley
so you can see it if your tall enough
best to put a line of paint on the pulley rim
rotate the pulley by hand push up on the pin to lock
pin is not spring loaded so make sure it is down before starting spindle
also most of the zirks on the machine are for oil not grease
Last edited by m37; 08-09-2012 at 08:04 AM.
Reason: forgot stuff
Ben, I am not sure what you are talking about on the 2 flats on the quill, my 55 which was built in '55 does not have any flats on the quill and I don't think there is a spindle lock on mine as mentioned by m37. When i got mine it had an adapter from BS9 to a TG75 which does have the flats on it, it was a real struggle to finally get it out. As to the 'just loosen the draw bar and it will pop it out', mine does not do that, you unscrew the drawbar and it just keeps unscrewing, there is nothing there to keep it in the spindle or to push against to pop the collet.
Might post a picture,
Thanks for the info on the zirks because there is grease all over the place.
Worked like a charm. I did have to give it a little help with the lead hammer. Looks like the collet had been in there a long while. I noticed that the nut used to load the head bearings was very loose and sticking out of the quill about a 1/4" and that the larger brass nut is out about three threads or so. I measured the space for the nut and it should be flush but what about the larger brass nut?
Oh yeah, I'll keep that old lead hammer close.
Ben, I'm going on foggy Index memories here. It was a loooong time ago, last night seemed like 40 years, probably closer to 50. Good to hear the collet is out.
Are you asking about the threaded rings in the snout of the quill that retain and shield the spindle bearings? If so make or use appropriate pin spanner wrenches and tighten them up. Don't worry, you can't overtighten them using a proper pin spanner wrench until you start messing up the pin holes or breaking the pins.
Grease in the Zerk fittings would be a complete teardown and cleanout when those old things had to make money. It was an on the spot firing offense to mis-lubricate a machine if one had been trained to do it correctly.
B&S tooling taper is under 10 degrees: it's a locking taper and needs force to remove it much as a Jacobs taper does. Index designed the machine to deliver ejection force on the tooling. Your machine has likely been modified in some manner.
I don't know if Wells mentioned it , but they regrind spindles from B&S 9 to R-8 for a very reasonable price...
+1 for what Dave said. I have one that works just as he describes. tools4cheap.net has some #9B&S tooling @ very reasonable prices. He also has Van Norman collets and other tooling. I haven't dealt with him but I seem to recall favorable comments on PraMac.
I'm sure it extends the useful life of the machine... in two ways.
Originally Posted by Toolchaser
The obvious one is that tooling will be more easily found. Not that there is actually a shortage of B&S #9, even today. Just less of a glut of it.
The less-obvious one is that you'll cut the worst-case stress on the spindle and drivetrain by as much as half.
A B&S #9 may be a RPITA from time to time to get out. But it has more grip than an R8.
A couple of pointers to keep in mind, from 20+ years of running Gorton mills that had Brown& Sharpe tapers in the spindles…
1. Tighten the draw bar with a 6” Crescent wrench. I’m not kidding! This prevents you from overtightening B & S arbors making it difficult hard to remove.
2. Brown & Sharpe tapers do not require the draw upforce required as R-8 or NMTB tapers do.
3. If you tighten up a “cold” B & S taper arbor into a “warm”spindle, it will take “lots” of force to remove when the spindle is cold! So at the end of the day, loosen the arbor and or remove from the spindle before it cools down.
4. If you wind up with a arbor that is “stubborn” or “stuck”,run the spindle in a high RPM for a few minutes to raise the temperature of the spindle where it is warm, this should allow you to remove the stuck arbor with ease and the force of a lead hammer optional.
5. If it’s really stuck, and I mean stuck, support the bottom end of the spindle nose, if you can, with a block of aluminum or brass against the table, so all of the blunt forces you will be exerting against the draw bar transfer through the spindle and not your spindle bearings. This will reduce the chances of damaging your precision spindle bearings.
Thank you for that!
Originally Posted by 4GSR
I should print out those timely reminders in large type, laminate, and hang a copy next to the Burke #4. AND the Quartet's vertical spindle.
Ken, Thanks for the 6" crescent tip. I'm staying with the B&S taper.
Dave, will do with spanners, thanks.