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Large Drill on pallet-good or bad?

Tom A

Cast Iron
Joined
Apr 26, 2009
Location
NW Florida
Most pallets seem very shoddy, so I build my own skid / pallet.

Ya'know, you'd think this seems like a nice idea, right?
Well, with some shippers, if the load isn't on an "official" pallet, they WILL put it on one.

I had two small milling machines shipped, a year apart, with Fastenal.
For the first one, the seller found a decent standard pallet, put a 3/4" plywood top on it, and bolted the crated machine to it - It arrived securely on the pallet, no issues.

The second one, however, was different - The seller made a fine sturdy crate, with fine skids under it, BUT it wasn't an "official" pallet size.
So, Fastenal, in their infinite wisdom, put his fine crate on the crappiest, 1/2 broken pallet I've ever seen, and shipped it like that, just sitting on the broken pallet.

When the forklift driver brought it out of the back warehouse, it was rocking side to side so bad, he was driving the lift at about 1/10th mph. with his eyes bulging out - I made him put it down, narrow the forks, and pick up the crate alone. Absolutely rock steady then. I'm still amazed it made it all the way here....

Moral is, check out what the shipper requires - Don't assume that just because you build something nice and reasonable, doesn't mean those bozos will go along with it.
 

M. Moore

Titanium
Joined
Jun 8, 2007
Location
Vancouver Island, B.C. Canada
And here is the end of the story.
The drill arrived yesterday, just barely upright. Luckily it was strapped into the cargo trailer but only because I happened to have a second conversation with the dispatcher and insisted that it be strapped into the truck. He listened and then acted appropriately- kudos to Comox Freight. Somehow it made it from Vancouver to the Nanaimo warehouse (halfway here) without being strapped into the truck.

When it arrived (45 minute drive) it was leaning over as it had jumped up and broken the pallet boards and was sitting with one edge onto the blocking that was added around the base. (as I had requested hoping it would strengthen the pallet somewhat) I forgot my phone on my desk so no pic but I did take pics of the destroyed pallet and loose banding.

Fortunately it was not leaning enough for it to fall when the driver took the strap off. I could not see the lean from the forklift but became alarmed when the driver said it was "leaning a bit". Oh boy was that an understatement and a very good thing that the truck was on a slight downhill grade opposite to the lean of the drill or it would have been on the floor when he released the strap. I grabbed some pry bars and we managed to get it back flat onto the pallet and proceeded to unload without issue but all the banding was now loose as the pallet boards had given up the fight. I brought it down my driveway by lifting it from the top eyebolt and the seller had kindly left the nice shackle in place. My gravel driveway is about 800 feet and not flat but going slow and steady made it a non issue.

I had made several requests to the seller regarding the prep and they made an attempt but obviously did not understand basic physics or the strength of materials. I suggested that they strap it underneath the pallet so the straps would not rip the boards off. ( which did happen) So it was a bit of luck that the truck broke down and they had to call a second time (one hour later ) to schedule another delivery day. That was when I insisted on it being strapped into the truck as it would have been horizontal had it just been sitting in the truck.

Not sure how the driver caused the machine to bounce but it may have been a large pothole or too fast over a speed bump. The driver knew what he had done but was careful not to say anything. He did insist that it was sitting flat on the pallet when he left Nanaimo so I was reasonably confident that it had not fallen over and been put upright as had happened to Milacron and the Alzmetal. I inspected it carefully for damage and could not see anything obvious. Truly amazing what can happen during a short trip and not something I had thought would be THE issue.

It is now almost in place and I hooked it up to power for testing which took a lot longer than it should have because the machine is wired for 460 volts not 230. It did not say 460 volts anywhere on the machine. I had 208 power at the location but had to run a temp cable for testing. I had asked about the motor voltage and it was a 230/460 motor so I figured I could rewire for 230 if it happened to be set for 460. Not so fast young man.... the switch gear was not up to the task of running on 230 volts. The motor was easy to switch over but the overload protection was not rated for the higher amperage. Also the control voltage was transformed down to 110 but that is pretty easy to change. So now I have to run it on 460 which means turning on the transformer each time I want to use the machine, not what I had planned plus the extra wiring work.

I was very surprised to see a 600 volt to 120 volt transformer inside the panel? When I checked with the meter after connecting the 480 service it was showing 105 volts which was enough to energize the coils and run the light. So it all worked but I am mystified why the factory would not use a 460 to 120 volt transformer?
I even have one in my stash of electrical goodies that came out of my panel saw when I converted it to 220 volts.

So the good news is that it all seems to work and it shifts easily but it is a bit noisier than I like but that is probably "normal". Well hopefully normal anyway and it still has some oil in it but it was low. The power feed works and it has the "auto-taper-eject" feature which is not really auto, more of a manual upward slam on the handle but it does work. It has a few minor issues like the coolant pump being seized ( not the original pump) which I expected. No handle for the table raising gearbox and some other minor things.
One bit of strangeness was the reverse button that had been "disabled" with a small aluminum knob that was a tight fit over the button nut and when I figured out what it was I carefully removed it and the spindle reverse works just fine. It therefore seems like this machine was never used for tapping, only drilling, so not sure if that is a good thing but it sure means it didn't spend much time in reverse.

I should go to the casino and throw a few K down on at the roulette table, the green zero number looks pretty good but perhaps I have used up all my luck for the year.
 

john.k

Diamond
Joined
Dec 21, 2012
Location
Brisbane Qld Australia
The general reason for reverse lockout is to prevent the mentally challenged (top employee) from busting the feed gears by jamming the spindle up into the drill in reverse......commmon cause of feed breakage.
 

M. Moore

Titanium
Joined
Jun 8, 2007
Location
Vancouver Island, B.C. Canada
John,
That sort of makes sense but the only time I reverse the spindle is when I am tapping with my bilz tap holder.
Why would you ever need to reverse the spindle while the feed is engaged? It was more likely that the top employees could not decipher the graphic image with an arrow showing the spindle direction and tried to drill in reverse, that would also damage the feed I think.
Would have been easier to WRITE- For and Rev as needed for clarity.
An interesting problem that the OEM has when making a product that ships to multiple countries. Too costly to make the control panel in multiple languages.
 

john.k

Diamond
Joined
Dec 21, 2012
Location
Brisbane Qld Australia
Would you believe a guy trying to drill a hole for 1/2 hour with the drill in reverse?.....Or another one complaining about drill bits,drilling with electric drill in reverse?.......or spend 10 minutes explaining there is "this way" and "that way?"....and then "so why cant I drill either way?"
 

lucky7

Stainless
Joined
Sep 6, 2008
Location
Canada
Well, you can friction burn thru many types of metal with a speeded up bandsaw, why not try it with a backwards running drill? ;-)

L7
 

woodsrider845

Hot Rolled
Joined
Dec 12, 2012
Location
ny usa
Any high center of gravity machine I move, I build my own "pallet" base, with a minimum of 4x4's. I make it as wide and long as the machine is tall, or as close as my trailer allows. Bolt the machine to said pallet. that way, if she wants to go, she has to tip more than her own weight, and overcome leverage.

Of course you strap it down, at least four points.

Then you can drill backwards....
 

Scottl

Diamond
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Location
Eastern Massachusetts, USA
What a horrible setup! It should be bolted to plywood with the table all the way down and the head strapped down beside it.

Even with steel strapping I wouldn't trust that for any move other than within a large facility.
 








 
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