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SB Shaper oil pump (in)stalled

Rob Mueller

Cast Iron
Mar 10, 2007
I've cleaned out the oil reservoir, blew out the 4 copper tubes as best as possible (couldn't really get to two of them because they're really stuck into the top of the machine). let it run for an hour to warm it up, but still no pumping oil.

I couldn't see a way to remove the oil pump, can I get some instructions from you knowledgeable people?




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Do you have a copy of the army manual? If not, a copy may be found at http://www.eurospares.com/shapers.htm It shows an exploded diagram of the oil pump.

Fist off, check the flow adjustment valves to make sure that they are on. When they're full on, the screw slots are vertical (at least on mine).

The most common problem I've heard of is some foreign object clogging the intake. If your fingers are small enough, you can feel around and check that. Mine was full of gunk when I got it, and I was able to get it cleaned out. It helps to drain the sump first.

The pump body is bolted to the main column from the outside, and joined to the flow adjustment valve box with a "flanged connector". It may be possible to unbolt the pump body, then pull it down off the flanged connector, thereby removing the entire unit without having to remove anything else. I wasn't able to get the bolts out, so I had to do it the hard way. Fortunately I was disassembling the machine anyway, so it wasn't a big deal at the time.

If you can't remove the pump body, here's how I did it:

If the problem is with the relief valve, you're in luck. All those parts can be taken out easily. There's not much to it, just a spring and a ball.

The plunger (and the spring & ball underneath) are a pain because you have to take the pump lever off first. I wasn't able to get it off without first taking off the bull gear. I already had mine apart, so it was no big deal to take it off...but I did struggle getting the pump lever back on correctly. It rides on an eccentric that is sandwiched between the back side of the bull gear and the column. If you don't get the lever arm into the slot just right, the plunger will not release all the way and the pump won't work. It took me several tries to get it back together right, having to break down the bull gear each time.

There is also a spring and ball inside the main pump body. If you can't get the body off, you won't be able to check those.

I remember several threads in the last few years that have discussed plugged pumps. Here's one: http://www.practicalmachinist.com/vb/showthread.php?t=130223

Hope this helps,
When I got my shaper it wouldn't pump oil. The oil seemed a little too thick. I drained the oil and refilled with the correct weight oil and everything worked just fine. I was very lucky. Maybe it could work for you! -- Jim
Hi Rob,

I'm afraid I can't be much help with removing your pump. When I worked on mine, it didn't seem like it was really practical to remove the pump without doing some major disassembly.

I've got some pictures of the disassembled pump I can post for you. They're on my home computer, so it will be this evening before I can do so.

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Some very good comments and advice so far, and all it agrees with my experience. I've decided not to address my remaining pump issues -- it still only works intermittently -- until I do a full disassembly/restification of the shaper, just because of the difficulties of working on the oil system with the shaper assembled.

Here are some pictures of the disassembled pump, courtesy of Chris Becker. Hopefully they will be of some help if/when you remove your pump. You can click on each picture for larger view:

Like Josh said, it is likely that you have some foreign matter blocking one of the ball valves open. In the pictures above, the intake valve is the top one, the middle one is the pressure relief valve, and the bottom one is the outlet valve. Note that the fitting on top of the outlet valve (which connects to the valve/distribution manifold) is just press fit into the pump housing.

I'm not sure if you've seen this diagram, but it shows the routing of the four oil lines emerging from the top of the pump. The front flow-adjustment valve controls the lines to the bull gear and crank slide, while the rear valve controls the flow to the ram ways:


One of my (perhaps overly ambitious) objectives is to replace the control valve manifold with a new manifold utilizing (4) NEEDLE-TYPE valves, so that each line can be adjusted accurately and independently. Also, I will definitely be adding some type of intake screen.


Hi Rob,

I've got some pictures of the pump -- both assembled and disassembled -- I can post for you. They're on my home computer, so it will be this evening before I can do so.


that would be great... thanks Paula.

I do have the army manual, and I removed all the old oil and gunk that goes with it. I thought I got everything out, but I'll check under the pump for some more molted bug skins.

do the original copper tubes just set into the oil pump or are they attached somehow.
Paula, thanks for the pictures, that sure helps.

Josh, thanks for your practical experience.

I'm wondering if someone took it apart and left some things out. I'll check it out. I did search around and I blew out any debris that I could.

What's amazing is that there was filter/screen (for a faucet) that was part of the junk in the shaper (along with a handle, metal bar, and tons of bugs).

Do the original copper tubes just set into the oil pump, or are they attached somehow?


On my shaper the oil lines are soldered to the top of the brass Junction Block, which is connected to the top of the pump housing:


The junction block is press-fit to the pump housing via the flanged connector, shown in an earlier picture. It's fairly obvious that the lube system was not designed to be "service friendly".

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It may be worth mentioning that the plumbing in my shaper doesn't match the flow diagram. One needle valve controls flow to the crank slide and left ram way (when viewed from the front), while the other controls flow to the bullgear and right ram way. This has made it really hard to adjust the flow on the left side. When I have the oil squirting into that little oil pan on the crank slide, there is so much oil going to the left ram way that it floods the drain blocks and gets oil all over everything. Likewise, if I adjust it so that the amount of oil going to the ram way is adequate, then nothing gets to the crank slide.

I think Paula's idea of building a new junction block with 4 needle valves is a great idea. It would be a real challenge to solder it all together, though.