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FP1 Decision: Thumbs up or down???

joaquin suave

Aluminum
Joined
Jun 2, 2012
Location
Central California
I am thrilled to have finally bought a slotting head (or shaper head) for my FP1 collection. However the problem being that I am now an old man ( still an immature male collector of "shop porn" in my wife's eyes) and seriously question whether I can "easily" swap the heads on my 3 "little sweethearts".
So I was thinking of mounting another overhead rail in my building (the old Central Coast Railway Station)over the mills with a chain hoist, then drill and tap the different Deckel heads and mount an eye bolt at their "balance points" for lifting them.

Eye bolts or no eye bolts what is your opinion I am all ears!
 
My attitude on machine modifications is that it is fine provided the change is done as though the factory engineered and executed the work.
Use of proper materials and high workmanship are a must, as well as correct plaiting or coatings where appropriate.
I suggest you have a look at the lifting point hardware on the “precision boring head “ to use as an appropriate model.
I can provide some photos if you require.
Cheers Ross
 
Electric hoists are cheap nowadays
One can also make a hoisting fixture, clamping around the round part of the head There where the head can rotate
On all of the heads that is the same diameter I think Weld a horizontal member to it with different hoisting points for each head if need be
Peter
 
However the problem being that I am now an old man ( still an immature male collector of "shop porn" in my wife's eyes) and seriously question whether I can "easily" swap the heads on my 3 "little sweethearts".
Even a strong youngster can be in trouble with that stuff. I have a very kind neighbor to help me, a big bricklayer man with arms wrists and hands like wood logs, can move 25Kg concrete bags under each arm. When he set the fixed table and vertical milling head for me he was surprised by their weight and the difficulty of positioning them precisely.

So, the hoist on a rail is an absolute need. I have received already a 0.5T chain hoist, an electric one would have been just too bulky an unnecessary for this single task..

Then I have the same questions in my mind, and few more.
Eyebolts, fixtures, or belts? It looks to me that a single belt does well enough for Stefan
https://www.practicalmachinist.com/forum/threads/another-fp1-overhead-crane.412484/

Must the rail necessarily run like Y on center of the machine, or is acceptable to run the sides about above the table support, and still position properly heads, tables, and other heavy items on the table?

I also want to make a cart that can hold, at the minimum, two heads and one table, taking the possible less space while allowing to pick up and drop in any item right away, or almost.

After all that is done I solemnly promise to stay away from shop porn, I'm also an old man after all.
 
I have a two ton hand-operated chain hoist directly over the line joining my FP2 to the cabinet where the heads are stored. Without that, changing heads would be impossible.

I've put lifting eyes on several of my Deckel FP2 heads. Spend some time to locate the balance point. No need to make the eye too large. Some photos can be found by following the links in this thread:


a photo of my slotting head is here:

I suggest making a flat "landing pad" on the casting so that when you tighten the eye bolt the shoulder has full square-on contact with the casting.
 
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Thank your very much guys!!!

Yes Ross, I'd love to see some pictures! And of course, whatever I do will be 100% TOP SHELF (just like the designs & products I've produced for the last 45 years).

Peter: I'll look into designing a "carriage" fixture, however I really like the simplicity of just an eye bolt, same goes for a chain hoist. I remember finding a company that makes high end light load chain hoists that I used for a clients past project. Once I find it again, I'll post it up.

jdm1: I really like your idea of mounting the overhead I beam on Y axis slide rails!!! I partition parts of my shop with pallet racks with corrugated metal walls and my future location for the 3 FP1's are between 2 pallet racks that are 3.6m apart. I was thinking of buying a Lista cabinet (I have given up hope on finding an original Deckel) then plasma cutting the drawers to fit the tables & heads on them. This could turn out perfect!!!

ballen: Thanks for posting your links.

Now for what I believe is a necessary matter for clarification...

SHOP PORN!

So for many years (I bought my first CNC mill in 1983) I had my head buried in NC, I wrote my first programs by hand off my designs on my drafting table and using a trig calculator for tangencies! I went from there throught the earliest CAD up to the latest 3d modeling and 5 axis CAM... However I was always curious about how "they" did it "back in the old days". So being the curious sort of guy, I started researching and almost all the pictures I found were of guys making complex stuff on Deckel milling machines!

So about 20+ years ago. I threw in the towel trying to keep my bicycle component business alive and put out my shingle as an industrial designer. My second client had decided to shut down their machine shop and have their product made off shore when the owner said that I was welcome to have first pick of their machines if i wanted to buy any of them. So he and I tour his shop and I gasped "you have Deckels!"
He shook his head and said "That was before I took over the company and dad demanded we keep them. Those old things haven't been used in years."
I told him I wanted to buy them but was a little short on cash then asked if I could put money down on one then make payments. He agreed and we worked together for a few months and the owner REALLY liked my work and then one afternoon he proposed" I'll trade you your design work for the remainer of what you owe on the one mill and the other!"
So that is how I got my first Deckels! So now, how does have anything to do with shop porn???

Well, all my industry peers like myself had heard about Deckels but never had seen one. So one time when one of my buddies came to visit and I suggested we go take a tour of the shop ( my home and shop are on the same property) my sweetheart laughed at me and said" Oh! you just can't wait to show off your shop porn can you!"

Meaning my Deckels! And to this day she refers to my Deckel collection as my "shop porn"!
 
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My slotting head is drilled and tapped in the middle of the slide and I screw an eyebolt in there for lifting.
I use a piece of angle with a cross hole and two Tee slot belts for the rotary table (I store it upside down to stop damage to the handle mechanis)
I bit the bullet and fitted an eyebolt to the ram of my vertical head.
I lift all these with a cheap electric hoist which is fitted on a little dolly that runs on an I beam so I can lift stuff off the mill and run it to one side and put it down on a trolley.
I am not too keen on chain hoists as you have to take care that the loose bits of chain can get tangled up and knock against the machine, electric hoists are pretty cheap and can give very small movements when the cable is doubled.
 
Well all my industry peers like myself had heard about Deckels but never had seen one. So one time when one of my buddies came to visit and I suggested we go take a tour of the shop ( my home and shop are on the same property) my sweetheart laughed at me and said" Oh! you just can't wait to show off your shop porn!"

Meaning my Deckels! Ant to this day she refers to my Deckels as my "shop porn collection"!

That makes me a porn dealer then :D

Peter
 
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I lift all these with a cheap electric hoist which is fitted on a little dolly that runs on an I beam so I can lift stuff off the mill and run it to one side and put it down on a trolley.
So you don't have a problem with the I beam running to a side and its ideal position being different for replacing the rotary table, or the head? By eye that can be about 60cm in Y. Maybe the I beam is in the middle of that?
 
I know what you mean about lifting bits on and off the machine, I can barely lift a 100mm Hofmann dividing head these days.

Shop cranes or gantry system are great for regular heavy movements but can be expensive and not practical for some home users.

Some time ago I bought a small mobility hoist which are much lighter in construction than engine hoists and at 170Kg capacity are capable of lifting all types of machine accessories. It’s one of the most useful things I ever bought, it's used regularly for lifting heads, tables and the not so light Deckel rotary table. Mine is the electric type which is precise simple to use, highly maneuverable and can be disassembled and hung on a wall for storage.

I would be wary about fitting lifting eye bolts to the standard vertical or slotting head on either the FP1 or 2. To do it properly you would have to completely strip the rear section and that area or the casting may not thick enough to take a threaded bolt. You would have to make a contoured saddle for outside and maybe a similar threaded one for the inside.

I use the method shown by StefanG as the centre of balance of the vertical and slotting heads are very close to that shown in his photos and a strop or sling is all that's required.

 

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I would be wary about fitting lifting eye bolts to the standard vertical or slotting head on either the FP1 or 2. To do it properly you would have to completely strip the rear section and that area or the casting may not thick enough to take a threaded bolt. You would have to make a contoured saddle for outside and maybe a similar threaded one for the inside.
I've done this for three Deckel heads without issues. A pretty standard lifting eyebolt is M8 or M10 thread. Lifting strength is 500kg and 800kg respectively.. The castings are quite thick "at the back of the neck" and are thicker at the center, near the "backbone". You can drill and tap a hole with 8 threads, and still have meat to mill a flat for the shoulder of the bolt. I think the strength is at least 10 times the weight and probably a lot more.

So anyhow, if it's done with some care I think it won't do harm. (Ross, am I misjudging the strength of cast iron? This does put it in tension but there's quite a bit of meat there.)

PS: the relevant castings are hollow, and you can reach in with your fingers. So you can determine the thickness before you drill, and you can stuff rags in the chambers (or a shop vac hose) to keep the drilling/tapping/milling swarf away from bearings and/or other sensitive stuff inside the heads themselves.
 
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I have this system in the shop Made out of C doorrail 4 rollers at the hoist and cross Very handy At 125kg more as sufficient to take any accessorie for a FP1 If possible I would make it bidirectional
BTW If you take a manual hoist I would go with the lightest available These run faster

Peter
 

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Some food for thought on lifting tooling.....
Here is my solution to lifting the "Precision Boring Head"
Uses the stock lifting point.
I use a "clevis" shape to bridge the width of the original lifting block.
There is a quick release "pit pin" with a push to release plunger.
Note the shape..its not where the pickup point is but rather where its lifted.....Gives some latitude to make the lift point at the best spot.

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Here is a perfect example....note the attachment point is different from the balance point.....

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Note that the vise is not perfectly balanced...tool was made for an earlier slightly smaller vise, new version is a bit heaver..
Posted before ,another shot of my crane solution...this setup is magic....articulated it reaches to all corners of my shop....
I modified the end of the outer boom to nest the chain hoist to save overhead height....

Cheers Ross
 
I've done this for three Deckel heads without issues. A pretty standard lifting eyebolt is M8 or M10 thread. Lifting strength is 500kg and 800kg respectively.. The castings are quite thick "at the back of the neck" and are thicker at the center, near the "backbone". You can drill and tap a hole with 8 threads, and still have meat to mill a flat for the shoulder of the bolt. I think the strength is at least 10 times the weight and probably a lot more

It's useful to know the castings are thick enough, but I'll stick with a lifting strop for now.
 
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Ross, I love the balanced solution. I never considered it, my solution has always been to clamp an S-Hook in the vise jaws, and lift the butt end of the vise as I position it on the table. Lifting the vise onto the machine has become difficult, but lifting the end of the vise I can still manage.

The last few days I have been machining sections of 12” I-beam that are nearly too heavy to lift onto the table. I think I need to devise some clamping lift eyes that make life easier.
 
Dave:
The lifting device shown above has a part not seen.....It is actually a "Z" shaped part.
There is a small lip facing forward at the lower end of the vertical part that is clamped in the vise jaws. That forward tang hooks under the front stationary jaw
to make a sort of safety. The closing force on the jaws is minimum as the tang is what is lifting the vise....
Cheers Ross
 








 
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