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  1. #1
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    Default My new badly beaten Becker

    A rescue from the scrapyard. Alas by the time I saw it there, it had already been dropped on the pile and buried. Three months later they had pulled it back out, but lost my number. I went to the yard last week to lok for something else, and the guy said, "We have your cast-iron piece..."

    The most serious obvious damage is the spindle bull gear, a little more than half of which is still there. I suppose I ciould wled in an arc of steel and cut new teeth, or repl;ace it with a big timing-belt pulley I think I have somewhere. Second most serious is bent spindle elevating screw and broken bracket. That is counting the rust as free iron ore. Missing outboard overarm support.

    About 2700 lb One pic shows it hoisted off the 1954 IHC truck I hauled it 50 miles home on.

    What caught my fancy was the long sadle travel parallel to the spindle...Not a HBM, but getting there.
    Also curious that the bull-gear spindle drive means very slow spindle speeds.

    Anyone familar with Becker? Looks like a hundred years old or thereabouts.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails cimg1789.jpg   cimg1788.jpg   cimg1787.jpg   cimg1785.jpg  

  2. #2
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    Magneticanomaly:

    You have,indeed, lived up to your 'handle', attracting this forlorn, woebegone Becker Milling Machine. Bringing the mortal remains of the Becker Milling Machine home on a 'Cornbinder truck that is nearly 70 years old seems fitting.

    Given the unfortunate 'modifications' done to the Becker Milling Machine at the scrapyard, I think you may well earn another handle: "Brazo the Magnificent". Visions of an old-style can of 'Braqzo' flux (the kind of cans with the yellow and black labelling and the small hole in the lid for sticking the brazing rods), a pile of 1/8" and 3/16" diameter bronze brazing rod, and a set of brass regulators and a torch with the brass polished smooth by years of leather gloved hands comes to mind.

    On this same note, I caught a couple of youtubes of Pakistani mechanics repairing broken cast iron tractor transaxle castings and a diesel tractor engine block casting. They were using the square cast iron filler rods and a can of white powdered flux, along with an oxyacetylene torch. The Pakistanis have a novel way of preheating, insulating, post heating, and lighting their torches. They have a pile of what looks like 'cow pies' (dried manure with plenty of vegetable matter in it) on hand. When they get set to weld on the iron castings, they pile on the dried cow pies and some 'tinder' (paper and a few slivers or wood). The dried manure is piled on the part to be welded and initially covers the weld zone. It is set on fire and burns with more of a smolder than a real blazing fire. After the smoldering cow pies have preheated the work, the mechanics rearrange them so they have access to the weld area. The torch is lit by cracking the acetylene valve and catching a light off the smoldering cow pies. Welding commences, and once completed, the smoldering cow pies and more unburned cow pies get heaped on the work covering the welded repair. This seems to work for the Pakistani mechanics and they get a reasonably good weld, some porosity showing up in the youtubes.

    The other thought that comes to mind, seeing your post about this Becker Milling Machine is something to the effect of: "No old machinery too hopeless for consideration... strays taken in..."

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  4. #3
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    There's a Becker of the same style (won't swear it's identical) up here in Elkins.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

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    This might be of interest.

    http://vintagemachinery.org/pubs/2106/18523.pdf

    Rob

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    And they made big verticals. Here is a GHOST image they thought was nice

    becker.jpg

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    good luck ,,seems like a very serious project.at the very least you have saved it!!

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    Ive seen mills that far gone repurposed into grinders via a simple mounting for a motor and segmented face grinding wheel ,for sharpening wood machine blades...

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    Seen worse on Craigslist. "It ran last time I used it".

    That's a cool old machine. You could have a new gear cast at a foundry. Just make the pattern and send it off for casting. Easiest way I can think of is CAD and 3D printing - probably in segments b/c the size. I know Keith Rucker uses Windy Hill Foundry.

    Best Rust Remover | Remove Rust Quickly with Evapo-Rust(R)

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  13. #9
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    Thanks for the encouraging replies, especiallly to Robert Lang for the original brochure. I had looked at Vintage Machinery, but found only the verticals.

    In addition to the valuable patina and "modifications", mine differs from the picture in a couple of respects.

    that there are square stubs for two cranks or handwheels at the end of the bed, one presumably for X and one for Y

    That my countershaft asssembly mounts on the vertical column, rather than near the floor. I can see that someone actually interposed a little piece of 3/4" plate to raise the countershaft bracket up a couple of inches higher than the original bolt-holes would have placed it.

    I loved Joe M's story about cow-pie pre- and post-heat. I have used wood, charcoal, and propane at various times, but have not yet advanced to the cow-pie stage. Lately E-NiFe 55 is my favorite way to weld cast-iron. A lot quicker than the CI square rods and oxyacetylene, and more reliable than brazing, which sometimes fails to "tin".

    One could actualy use the broken 5/8ths of a gear as a pattern, just move it in the flask as you pack the sand around it. But I am more likely to bend a piece of 3/4 by 2 mild steel to the right arc, cut 3/4" rods to length for the missing spokes and weld it all together and try cutting the needed teeth in the new steel.

    I had fine success adding steel to a cast-iron part several years ago, in a similar configuration. It was the "crankshaft' for a very old piston-type water-pump. The throw was made like the valve cam sometimes is for a steam engine, as a hollow eccentric offset from the axis in the middle of the shaft, probably 6" in diameter. Somebody let the oil sump go dry, the big end on the pitman rod must have seized and broke, then as the machine kept running unattended for God knows how long, the stub of the rod wore the high half of the eccentric away.. I welded on a suitably-sized pipe-segment, then reground the whole thing (instead of turning, for fear of hard-spots) with a right-angle grinder mounted to the tool-post of my big lathe.

    I fear i will disappoint my friends here by not getting around to working on it any time soon, but at least it is under cover now.

    Here is a mostly-theoretical question. The vertical leadscrew is smoothly bent about 45 degrees. Looks easy enough to make a new one, of off-the-shelf Acme rod if it is a standard size. If I straighten it, I think it will end up longer than I was originally. and so, inaccurate. What say you all?

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    One day I was visiting fellow member Jim C on Grand Island,
    and he was scrapping one in his dumpster. I don't remember
    if he kept the gear. I will check of he has it. If I recall
    I think his machine was a Lincoln type mill, Not sure.
    Anyhow I will check.
    I have a few IHCs.
    I have a '53 R-110 and a '53 R-162 and a '67 R-1856.
    Glorious trucks, you will never see made as tough as
    they are again. I love the rear girder of that flat bed frame.

    --Doozer

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  17. #11
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    Let me know the dimensions of the gear and I can check around. There is a remote chance we have something you could use

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    Good on you for saving it! Even if it takes awhile, which is the norm with cases like this, it's worth the effort IMO. Comparatively, you have more there to start with then where I started on a couple projects.

    I think machines like this often start at some hole-in-the-wale machine shop, or some guys hobby garage, who aren't really connected with any other historical or vintage machinery crowds. They tend to go at it alone, and when they need room (or die) the machine might be put up for sale for some impractical price ("Antique Latheing Machine: $5000. I know what I have!"), or listed in a way that people interested might not find it, and when it doesn't sell, the owner assumes no one alive wants it and sends it to the scrapper. These machines CAN make money, but IMO their rehabilitation has to be seen as a volunteer effort that has little to no bearing on the machines market value. It's a bit like restoring a classic car or building a wood sail boat. You do it because you enjoy it and the world needs more of it, not because it makes you money.

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  21. #13
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    If you go the route of replacing the missing part of the gear, you can lay sandpaper on the steel and tap it with a hammer to mimic the "as-cast" texture.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G891A using Tapatalk

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    Thanks to MB Naegle. I am not exactly a hole-in-the-wall, more like a hole-in-the-woods. I pick up a lot of things that look like they may be useful some day, and often I get around to fixing them when suddenly I have a job that I need them to do.

    The little one-ton IH always gratifies me when I put some giant load on it and it just squats a little lower and pulls it without fuss. I have done a few things to it: rebuilt the bed with mobile-home I-beams for edge rails, cross-members, and variable height spacers underneath, continuously welded to the frame, instead of frame-rotting wood, when I got the truck. Added a couple of spring leaves. Made new king-pins out of MacPherson-strut shafts. Swapped-in a 5-speed trans out of a 60-size truck. 240 in^3 engine, 3.56 x 4.02 bore and stroke, lots of torque down to 1200 RPM.

    Thanks very much for asking about the gear, De Selle..I'll get the dims in the morning. The arrangement is odd. There is a partly-broken cast gear-cover that both the spindle and the pinion-shaft go through, so that would prevent adjusting the center-distance, but the pinion/countershaft frame swings relative to the machine head, so with the guard removed center-distance will be variable.

    Let me expand on my question about straightenng a leadscrew. Of course, the meta stretched on the outside of the bend and, well, did not exactly compress but got shortened on the inside. I have made a lot of money over the years straightening a lot of things, to various tolerances. Never had a chance to measure length before bending and after straightening. My guess is that what has stretched will not shorten all the way back to original length, so shaft wil overall be longer after straightening.so pitch of screw will be altered, 'thogh probably not enough to matter in this application. Can anyone confirm or refute my guess with experience, or a more S WAG?

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    I agree, it seems like a possibility that it would be longer after straightening, but depending on your standards, all it might have to do is run smoothly in the nut.

    Seems like there's really nothing to lose by trying it. I once "compressed" the end of a bushhog blade mounting arm so's to reduce the diameter of a worn hole for remachining. I'd think one could selectively heat a lengthened screw and shorten it slightly by applying force at the ends.

    But... nowadays I'd prob just look around for a length of the right acme leadscrew and make a new one. Prob the old one is worn anyway...

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  26. #16
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    With the help of some oil and a 4 ft chain-pipe-tongs, I got spindle and countershaft to turn. That helped put enough of the remaining rim of the broken bull-gear out where I could count teeth and measure.

    Appears to be 6 DP, 14 1/2" PA, 1 3/4" face, somewhere between 2" and 3" bore.....about 22 1/2" OD....132 teeth

    I have not looked at the plates on my dividing head...Am I likely to find one with 33 holes, to use 5 turns at 40:1 between teeth?

    No. That makes no sense. I have made a grand total of three gears in my career with this thing, and clearly need to think more about it

    Moving 10 holes in 33-hole plate per tooth. if DH ratio is 40:1, should give motion of 10/1320th of a circle for each movement?

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    Quote Originally Posted by magneticanomaly View Post
    Thanks to MB Naegle. I am not exactly a hole-in-the-wall, more like a hole-in-the-woods. I pick up a lot of things that look like they may be useful some day, and often I get around to fixing them when suddenly I have a job that I need them to do.

    The little one-ton IH always gratifies me when I put some giant load on it and it just squats a little lower and pulls it without fuss. I have done a few things to it: rebuilt the bed with mobile-home I-beams for edge rails, cross-members, and variable height spacers underneath, continuously welded to the frame, instead of frame-rotting wood, when I got the truck. Added a couple of spring leaves. Made new king-pins out of MacPherson-strut shafts. Swapped-in a 5-speed trans out of a 60-size truck. 240 in^3 engine, 3.56 x 4.02 bore and stroke, lots of torque down to 1200 RPM.

    Thanks very much for asking about the gear, De Selle..I'll get the dims in the morning. The arrangement is odd. There is a partly-broken cast gear-cover that both the spindle and the pinion-shaft go through, so that would prevent adjusting the center-distance, but the pinion/countershaft frame swings relative to the machine head, so with the guard removed center-distance will be variable.

    Let me expand on my question about straightenng a leadscrew. Of course, the meta stretched on the outside of the bend and, well, did not exactly compress but got shortened on the inside. I have made a lot of money over the years straightening a lot of things, to various tolerances. Never had a chance to measure length before bending and after straightening. My guess is that what has stretched will not shorten all the way back to original length, so shaft wil overall be longer after straightening.so pitch of screw will be altered, 'thogh probably not enough to matter in this application. Can anyone confirm or refute my guess with experience, or a more S WAG?
    I know next to nothing about those old IH trucks. Is that 240 an OHV or a flathead?

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    OHV 240. Oil pan on the truck says "220", but the engine is defintely a BD-240, which is at least 3 years newer, so something was replaced at some point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by magneticanomaly View Post
    OHV 240. Oil pan on the truck says "220", but the engine is defintely a BD-240, which is at least 3 years newer, so something was replaced at some point.
    Ah, gotcha. So.... 'bout 130HP? Maybe 140? Sorta funny how far engines have come since the 50's. The flathead in my F1 supposedly makes 106HP.

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    Enough hp to pull 2900 lb from the scrapyard up my 19% grade in 3rd gear out of 5

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