Wells Index 55 Belt Tension Mechanism
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  1. #1
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    Default Wells Index 55 Belt Tension Mechanism

    Just bought one of these, have figured out everything except how to tension/detension belts to change speeds.

    On my machine there is a crank that drives a screw that appears to be meant to push the motor forward and decrease tension. However when the crank is turned in reverse there is nothing for it to catch on to pull motor backwards.

    The motor is mounted to a plate and the plate rides in a channel for tension/detension. I can push the motor backwards with muscles to provide tension, but surely there must be something I'm missing. I'm expecting a lever that moves the motor in and out of tension but cannot see one in any pictures of other 55 mills.

    What am I missing?

    Cheers,
    Pat

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    Would the manual help any? - manual model 55.pdf - Google Drive

    On the bottom of page 2 there is a sub-section that starts with E. Drive Belts but it doesn't mention a crank just a "belt tension handle". Could be more information elsewhere in the manual.

    Hope that helps,

    -Ron

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    Yeah. Had already read through the manual. You'll notice that section E refers you to drawing 9072 which is missing from the online documentation.

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    On mine, the tensioner bolt does both, it pushes it forward to loosen and then in reverse it tightens it. There is a groove machined into the end of the bolt that fits in the mount plate, it could be that the end of the bolt on yours has broken off. Mine is worn quite a bit and it takes a few turns before it takes up the slack. If I remember, I will get some pics of it.

    Jason

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    Jason,

    Awesome. That makes complete sense. I knew that bold had to do more than just push. If you could take a picture that would be amazing. I think with a picture I could fabricate up what I need.

    We really need a Wells-Index sub forum.

    Cheers,
    Pat

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    Well your in luck because my index 55 is ripped apart for cleaning and lube. Congrats on your index55 there’s not a lot of us index guys on here I think. For such a big company and such a long history you would think they would be a lot more abundant. And Mac is right that screw does both push and pull

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    Default

    f54f9feb-e08b-4437-a495-38972d8ad351.jpge70e1ea8-32f0-43a8-b4ee-d8fe47c7d9aa.jpgd0a23c49-d7a4-43e2-a74d-75e8aee9ff46.jpg9bd3455d-a1b4-4fc1-b0ed-fc659144c3dc.jpg

    I loaded these off my phone so the pics will be smaller then usual, let me know if you need bigger pics and I’ll load them full size from my computer





    Also I had some trouble tightening my belts first time to. On my index the middle idler pulley set (and yours) rides on a pivoting arm. My arm was a bit rusted and seized so when I tightened my belts only the motor belt would actually tighten and the rest of the belts would stay loose, make sure when you loosen the belts that you manually swing that “idler arm” back and fro a few times for good measure

    Oh yeah my pictures are not free, I take payment in form of pictures of others machines! Post some pics of your beast!
    Last edited by Homebrewblob; 05-29-2020 at 01:26 PM.

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    Thanks! Looks like on mine its just broken or wallered out so bad the screw isn't being captured. I'm assuming that material is cast? Guess one of my first jobs will be making a new mounting plate.

    Here's a picture of Bertha and her brother Sheldon:
    wells_index_55.jpg
    sheldon_lathe.jpg

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    I have a Super 55 and the tensioner is on the backside of the machine under the motor.

    Pete
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails dsc_7060.jpg  

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    Quote Originally Posted by HurleyByrd View Post
    I have a Super 55 and the tensioner is on the backside of the machine under the motor.

    Pete
    That’s were ours is aswell.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oldtom01 View Post
    Thanks! Looks like on mine its just broken or wallered out so bad the screw isn't being captured. I'm assuming that material is cast? Guess one of my first jobs will be making a new mounting plate.

    Here's a picture of Bertha and her brother Sheldon:
    wells_index_55.jpg
    sheldon_lathe.jpg
    That’s a nice setup, what’s the size of your lathe? And boy are them toys dirty!

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    Also when I put my motor back on top after moving the machine I had the screws backed all the way out so it wouldn’t pull the motor tight either so check for that. I’m not sure what the screw is made of but I think steel, the bracket with the screw tab and that holds the motor could be either steel or cast not sure. Do you guys have the dial indicators and rails for your x and y movements??

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    Quote Originally Posted by Homebrewblob View Post
    Do you guys have the dial indicators and rails for your x and y movements??
    Were these an option? I very quickly installed a cheap digital readout. If I recal correctly it was something in the $400 neighborhood. BEST investment for this machine hands down.

    Does everyone's machines here have the Brown & Sharpe spindle still installed or the Index upgrade to an R8? Mine is still the original B&S. Mine came with a HUGE set of B&S collects, drill bits, holders, etc.....

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    this is my SB16. She’s good to me. I had the door and covers off in this pic but put them back on after I changed the belts.

    my lathes serial card from SB

    edce8b89-f2f5-49b0-95d3-baa7a917079a.jpg
    I don’t have a good pic of my index 55 yet as the cleanup is still in process so this is the best I got

    My index serial card from wells index

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    Quote Originally Posted by HurleyByrd View Post
    Were these an option? I very quickly installed a cheap digital readout. If I recal correctly it was something in the $400 neighborhood. BEST investment for this machine hands down.

    Does everyone's machines here have the Brown & Sharpe spindle still installed or the Index upgrade to an R8? Mine is still the original B&S. Mine came with a HUGE set of B&S collects, drill bits, holders, etc.....
    Yes my index still has the bs9 spindle. I’m uploading some pictures now so they are full size. I’ll post them shortly

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  23. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Homebrewblob View Post
    That’s a nice setup, what’s the size of your lathe? And boy are them toys dirty!
    Its a Sheldon XL56 with a 10" swing and 36" between centers.

    Sheldon has been cleaned up, but not repainted.

    The Index has only been here a few days and was rescued by the seller from an open air golf course maintenance shed. It's in remarkably good shape as far as the mechanisms go, but the paint is absolutely leprous.

    And yes, B&S 9, which I will be sticking with.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HurleyByrd View Post
    Were these an option?
    Sure was an option. I’m keeping mine bs9 too as the cost from wells index to grind to R8 is Ridiculous. I hear r8 is not as rigid as bs9 anyway. And the dials use a square head stud that’s bent down and rides in the v of the dial rail, but I don’t know what you use to “fill” the rail up to the rail tip. Like a very skinny screw jack on its side??







  26. #18
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    That's pretty cool!!!! Nice add on for sure.

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    I think they are the coolest little add on this machine has. Mine was missing on of the indicators and housing, I actually found one on eBay and swooped it up. In the pics with both dials side by side, the one on the bottom or left of pic is the replacement.

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  30. #20
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    Hey oldtom wells index will do a serial card look up for you for 25$ and email you the copy just like south bend and menu others do


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