Hardinge Cataract BB59 rear spindle bearing
Close
Login to Your Account
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    230
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    3

    Default Hardinge Cataract BB59 rear spindle bearing

    Hello,

    Some years ago I purchased a couple of Hardinge Cataract bench lathes, followed by a spare headstock and compound slide from a scrapped machine. Life kind of got in the way of doing anything with them but I've recently constructed a bench top, fitted original steam pipe legs, and put one of the lathes on it, using the spare BB59 enclosed headstock.

    These two headstocks are the same model and type but the spare one has the brake intact, and having removed the chase threading spindle gear from the original headstock (with a bit of heat) it turned out to be missing a fairly important preload nut.

    Running the lathe after oiling, I discovered the read bearing is intermittently noisy, it's been getting quieter with a bit of running - but it's still somewhat concerning. The front bearings seem fine.

    Reviewing the headstock picture on the lathes website it seems that the rear bearing is just a deep grove ball bearing with the outer race free to float in the headstock bore - the lack of pre-load suggests to me that it's really nothing special.

    Searching reveals there are a few threads on replacing the front bearings but little seems to have been said about the rear bearing. I wondered if anyone has replaced theirs or can offer advice on the sort of runout spec I'll need to look for in what seems to be a fairly (relatively speaking) non-critical bearing.

    Thank you,

    Jonathan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,203
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    128
    Likes (Received)
    207

    Default

    Jonathan,

    Look for a PM from me.

    Irby

  3. Likes J Grainger liked this post
  4. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    230
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    3

    Default

    Hello,

    Thank you for getting in touch, I've now responded to your PM.

    Jonathan

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    230
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    3

    Default

    After receiving reading the PM sent by Irby I've spent some time today, disassembly and fitting a replacement bearing.

    Having two headstocks I found that the spare one had a really good condition rear bearing, and that the headstock I've used had a bad bearing. The rear bearing had dried out, had a split cage, and the oil ways were blocked inside, to the extent that it was completely dry despite oiling for a week prior to some light use (to test and find problems). The front bearings weren't dry, but not too far off. The rear bearings got swapped after cleaning.

    Curiously the spindles are actually slightly different between the two headstocks. The now running headstock has a taper which goes back to the rear edge, and the spindle tensioning nut has an internal clearance to fit over an extended bearing surface.
    The spare headstock has a step in the spindle nose taper, just before the rear edge, and the tensioning nut is threaded all the way through and does not overlap the bearing surface on the spindle (it physically can't), as the nut is not relieved and the internal bearing registration surface is shorter.
    Both spindles seem to protrude the same at each end of the headstock. I wonder if one was made in the UK and one the USA, or just a subtle update.

    As the lathe became a project on the back burner I'll put up a few pictures in a sort of before and after thread. It's not finished yet, but is getting there.

    Jonathan

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    peekskill, NY
    Posts
    24,687
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    4717

    Default

    duplicate post, sorry!
    Last edited by jim rozen; 03-23-2020 at 04:14 PM. Reason: duplicate post, sorry

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    peekskill, NY
    Posts
    24,687
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    4717

    Default

    Hardinge seems to have changed their headstock bearing designs almost continually over the years. You
    may just have two different vintage items.

    You are correct that the rear bearing is nothing more than a plain radial ball bearing, with the inner race
    contstrained axially on the spindle and the outer race floating in a tight bore in the casting. This is
    so the differential thermal contraction between steel and cast iron can be accomodated.

    I suspect an electric motor grade bearign would work reasonably well for the rear bearing.

    These are from an Elgin rebuild but the idea is similar:





    The new front angular contact pair are from Alpine Bearing:





    I didn't take any pics of the completely re-assembled spindle however.
    You can see in one photo where the rear bearing seats in the cast iron
    bore, and likewise the front pair in the front bore.

  8. Likes J Grainger, dkmc liked this post
  9. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    230
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    3

    Default

    Thank you for responding with a few pictures. These lathes are a bit daunting at first but seem pretty straightforward once past the Hardinge fear factor.

    Shall be nice once it's sorted.

    Jonathan

  10. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    peekskill, NY
    Posts
    24,687
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    4717

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by J Grainger View Post
    Thank you for responding with a few pictures. These lathes are a bit daunting at first but seem pretty straightforward once past the Hardinge fear factor.

    Shall be nice once it's sorted.

    Jonathan
    The lube question is always outstanding. They did not make up their minds about oil or grease?

    That headstock had originally had oil cups, but a former owner got fed up I guess and put zerk grease fittings there.
    I put oil cups back there, based on the gaskets and the shape of the oil grooves in the casting. If oil then you really
    do need to put paper gaskets in there, it's designed to fill below the point where oil can spill out of the hole for the
    spindle.

    The two outer bearings need to be held in contact to develop the correct preload, the gaskets space the end plates
    off the casting. The gaskets have to be thick enough to seal, but thin enough that the plates clamp the bearing ODs.

  11. Likes J Grainger liked this post
  12. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,203
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    128
    Likes (Received)
    207

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jim rozen View Post
    The two outer bearings need to be held in contact to develop the correct preload, the gaskets space the end plates
    off the casting. The gaskets have to be thick enough to seal, but thin enough that the plates clamp the bearing ODs.
    The gap there on my Hardinge ball bearing headstock measured .010" and a gasket made from a manila folder worked just fine. Here's an example of the manila folder gasket for an enclosed headstock on a BB4 mill. It uses the same bearings and same spindle configuration as the 5C lathes.

    img_3147.jpg

    Also shown is the rear bearing that has been talked about. It was originally an open bearing but I wanted to eliminate the cork seals that had quite a bit of drag, so I made metal seals to press onto the inner bearing races where there was a place for them. It was really a relief for clearance for the outer seal but there wasn't an outer seal on these and no relief for one to be pressed onto. The seals rotate with the spindle, which is opposite to what normal bearing seals do, but these seem to work just fine. The mill spindle runs at 4000 RPM just fine and where the cork seals got the spindle quite hot, this seal doesn't heat the spindle at all. The mill originally had the open bearings at the front but a previous owner replaced them with sealed bearings, so I also removed the rest of the cork seals. I filled the rear bearing about 1/4 full with grease, so now the mill requires no oil lube on the bearings.

    As a side note on the rear bearing specs. I measured the runout on one of the rear bearings I had out of a Hardinge enclosed headstock. The bearing inner race wasn't in great shape and the bearing was not always smooth turning even after cleaning it well. But when I found a smooth area on the inner race and the bearing turned smoothly the runout was as low as .0002", with no measurable side play. That doesn't sound like a run of the mill motor bearing to me, but I have never seen specs on the rear bearing. Here's that bearing.

    img_4067.jpg

    Irby
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails img_3147.jpg   img_4067.jpg  

  13. Likes J Grainger liked this post
  14. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    peekskill, NY
    Posts
    24,687
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    4717

    Default

    I seem to recall that is what I used, a manilla folder. This is of course less critical if grease is used.

  15. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,203
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    128
    Likes (Received)
    207

    Default

    I think you're the one I got the idea from, Jim.

    Irby

  16. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    230
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    16
    Likes (Received)
    3

    Default

    I need to sort out the sealing of the front bearings. On the inside, it looks like the cork seal is ok for now, but it's seeping at the spindle nose. Shall probably make a paper seal.

    Here are a few pictures of progress so far.. I've plenty yet to do, including making little bits for the lathe.. as well as a proper toolpost. Being as there are 2 tailstocks I fancy scraping the bottom of a later one (same with zeroing dial matching toolmakers slide) which is a bit high and laterally slack, then converting the one in the picture to lever action.

    Lathe Bench

    lathe part way completed

    lathe getting there

    Jonathan
    Last edited by J Grainger; 03-30-2020 at 11:03 AM. Reason: picture links

  17. Likes IrbyJones liked this post
  18. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Country
    UNITED STATES
    State/Province
    Virginia
    Posts
    1,203
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    128
    Likes (Received)
    207

    Default

    Wow, that's a terrific bench you made there, Jonathan! Your lathe setup is looking great.

    Irby

  19. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    peekskill, NY
    Posts
    24,687
    Post Thanks / Like
    Likes (Given)
    0
    Likes (Received)
    4717

    Default

    Maybe everyone doesn't know this - but that particular lathe - hardinge split bed, with the two cast speed control levers - was the original logo for the PM site.


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •