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  1. #1
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    Default Painting my FP2

    It's been kind of quiet around here, so I thought I'd post a few recent photos from painting my FP2. The inspiration for this was a visit from Karl, who helped me to change the input bearing on the back of the machine and to do some other minor repairs. Since that required pulling off the sides and back, which in turn requires removal of the DRO and scales, I figured it was a good time to do some more painting.

    As a starting point, here is the machine, seven years ago, when I first saw it. The old-timers here know that I've done a lot of repairs and fixes since then, but I've always put off painting, because I hate doing it.



    Four years ago, after doing some repairs to it, I painted the long reach vertical head: Long-reach FP2 head (from circa 1964) . Recently, after some on-line research, I bought a new spray gun for this (Devilbiss FLG5 with a 1.4mm tip) which I am very happy with.

    Here is some of the painting work in progress. The goal was to get a finish as close as possible to factory, but with modern (2 component PU) paint. Most surfaces have 3 coats of 2k acrylic primer (wet sanded after the final coat) followed by 3-5 coats of MIPA 200-90 polyurethane, wet sanded 1500/2000/3000 and then polished.











    Here is how it now looks. I am still not finished putting everything back together, and am just now in the process of reinstalling the DRO, scales, and cabling. Each scale has soldered connections near the head in a sealed connection box, which connects the head to the cable that goes to the DRO.







    Having a tidy paint job does make maintenance more fun. I snapped this photo was I was doing the final adjustment of the two X-axis gibs, before installing the bellows.



    The worst part was prepping and painting the base. Biggest mistake was painting the base and support separately. I should have removed the vertical table and then done the base and support at the same time, requiring less masking, less paint mixing, and less gun-cleaning.

    I still have some small parts to paint, such as the Y-axis feed stops. But I need to first find some suitable hammertone paint.

    I am still putting it back together, using this as an opportunity to do some further little fixes. For example the cover of the X-axis scale (not visible in the photo) was about 0.5mm proud of the vertical table. I've moved the scale and head so that the cover is now 1mm behind the plane of the table. The Y-axis gib lock screw did not work correctly (an internal part was missing). Now it does. I've installed a new bearing behind the bottom bevel gear that drives the vertical power feed shaft into the support. And so on.

    With practice, my spraying is getting better -- I can now get a thick finish which is smooth enough that any remaining orange peel or overspray comes off with a few swipes of 1500 or 2000 grit paper.

    Cheers,
    Bruce
    Last edited by ballen; 10-08-2020 at 10:48 AM.

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    Nice job
    I have done many machines in the past But those were all my own machines or I got payed by the hour
    Very labourintensive to do a proper job

    I see you still have the old bellow without sheet metal covers for the z-axe

    Peter

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    Bruce, turned out great, congratulation's!
    It's always a pleasure to work on and around a beautiful machine?

    Kevin

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peter from Holland View Post
    Nice job. Very labour intensive to do a proper job.
    Thank you. I am getting faster at it, as I develop my technique. Currently I do it as follows:

    - scrape/sand/wash off any bad paint
    - grind or rough sand (120) any bare metal or chipped areas, fill all low spots with slow-set (1 hour working time) 2k epoxy-based filler
    - wet sand (220) with soap and water
    - spray 3 coats of primer (all at once, about 5-10 minutes between coats)
    - within an hour (primer still soft) apply compatible 2k fast-set filler to any low spots (primer highlights those)
    - after a couple of more hours, wet sand (220 and 400)
    - spray 3-5 coats of paint (all at once, about 8-10 minutes between coats)
    - wait a day, then wet sand 1500/2000/3000, followed by rubbing compound and wax

    The first step is definitely the most time consuming one.

    I see you still have the old bellow without sheet metal covers for the z-axes
    I actually also own a Z-axis bellows with the metal armouring, but I prefer the bellows without the metal plates, because you can go higher in Z without removing the bellows. The sheet metal armouring plates are THICK.
    Last edited by ballen; 10-08-2020 at 10:42 AM.

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    Certainly looks better now Bruce, well done!

    Thanos

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    Nice to see you went with the period correct "grey" color...Nice.
    Too bad it does not have the correct hand wheels to complete the "look"

    Are the various components you used for finish, and filling Euro specific?

    Thanks for sharing and making those of us what hate refinishing feel bad....
    Cheers Ross

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    Hi Ross,

    Quote Originally Posted by AlfaGTA View Post
    Nice to see you went with the period correct "grey" color...Nice.
    Thanks. Four years ago I had a paint shop match the color. They came up with a mix, using RAL 7010 (Tarpaulin grey) with 60 grams of white pigment added per kg.

    Too bad it does not have the correct hand wheels to complete the "look".
    Yes, it came with this style handwheel, so I have stuck with it. But I increased the diameter of the Z-axis handwheel from 180 to 200mm, and also replaced both the Y and horizontal quill handwheels with ones that have a spinner handle. So you're right, I'm far from original here.

    Are the various components you used for finish, and filling Euro specific?
    I'm not sure. They are 2-component products made by a company called MIPA. The primer/filler is acrylic, designed to bond with all standard metals and materials, and the top coat is a "fast drying 2K polyurethane acrylic paint for industrial coating of machines, components, constructions, agricultural machinery and construction vehicles." What I like about this finish is that after it has cured, it is impervious to standard solvents (alcohol, lacquer thinner, acetone, naptha, and so on). I also like the fact that after a day at room temperature, it is already quite hard and that it continues to get harder with time.

    [Later edit/ addition]

    Here are English-language links for the filler and the PU top coat:
    https://www.mipa-paints.com/fileadmi...dierfiller.pdf
    https://www.mipa-paints.com/fileadmi...m/PU200-90.pdf

    It is an interesting exercise to estimate the average film thickness of the topcoat. For example, when I sprayed the base of the FP2, I estimate that I covered a surface area of 1.5 square meters, or 15,000 square centimeters. I used about 500 ml = 500 cubic centimeters of the topcoat, which according to the spec sheet is 40% solids by volume. So the average thickness of the topcoat is 0.8 x 0.4 x 500/15,000 cm = 0.01 cm = 0.1mm = 100 microns = 0.004" . (Here the factor of 0.8 is to account for loss of 20% of the paint by overspray.)

    Thanks for sharing and making those of us what hate refinishing feel bad....
    You're in good company -- I also hate it -- now I have to finish the horizontal table.

    The refinishing part is OK. What I despise is removing the two layers of badly applied green paint before I can do the refinishing.

    Cheers,
    Bruce
    Last edited by ballen; 10-09-2020 at 02:58 AM.

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    I favor the earlier hand wheels not just for being period correct, but because with them its way easier to make small accurate moves . The rim of the early hand wheels is always connected to the axis screw so no need to
    mess with pulling the handle out to engage...just simply give the wheel rim a nudge...no chance of bumping the axis when the handle is pulled out....just feels more natural.

    Cheers Ross

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlfaGTA View Post
    I favor the earlier hand wheels not just for being period correct, but because with them its way easier to make small accurate moves.
    Yes, you've mentioned this before. It makes sense to me, so I thought about converting the hand wheels to the older style (they do turn up from time to time used at reasonable prices). Problem is that the mounting is different for the two styles. The older style uses a woodruff key in the shaft and a retaining nut mounted on a threaded section at the end of the shaft. The newer style uses a split pin through a cross-hole. On my machine, the woodruff key slots are still there but the threaded sections have been cut off. So mounting the old-style handles would require grafting new threaded sections onto the ends of the X-axis lead screw, and the Y- and Z-axis handwheel shafts. It's not hard, but also not trivial.

    PS: I've now got the DRO reconnected. Here's a few more photos for the group:















    Hopefully this weekend I can paint the horizontal table, and that will wrap it up for now. Next thing to go will be the control cabinet, which I intend to replace with a VFD "one of these days". That's a whole lot less work than repainting the control cabinet, and I would be happy to free up the space.

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    Hi to all,

    Bruce, I think this work deserves a bit larger pics, can't admire much from these thumbnails...! Looks beautiful but from far away

    Regarding the VFD, how would this replace the the cabinet? I mean, cabinet is all about switching, protection, interfacing for the microscope and the high-speed head etc. What would a VFD offer in its place?

    Ross, Bruce: yes, old style handwheels make much more sense when you want to make small moves. I'd rather have a fixed wheel with no hand crank at all (after all the FP2 has rapids) than the sliding handwheel.
    (Plus, I would rather have an imperial X screw than the metric one, that has almost half the pitch and would make small moves much more controllable. Ross suggested similarly but I had already done the imperial-metric conversion on my machine... )

    BR,
    Thanos

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    Cool

    Thanks for sharing the photos and details of the process.
    Looks terrific, I have 2 FP4NCs and a 10EE for you to work your magic on during your next trip to Utah.

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    Just a side note about painting. I recently discovered disposable paint cups for sprayguns, 3M, Devilbiss, Sata, I don't know what is available in EU. But for me it was a gamechanger. Throw away the inside container, squirt alittle thinner down the inlet of the gun till clean, and you're done.

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    Quote Originally Posted by daryl bane View Post
    Just a side note about painting. I recently discovered disposable paint cups for sprayguns, 3M, Devilbiss, Sata, I don't know what is available in EU. But for me it was a gamechanger. Throw away the inside container, squirt alittle thinner down the inlet of the gun till clean, and you're done.
    I'm going to purchase a Devilbiss "Dekups" starter system the next time that I visit the US. It costs too much here in Germany.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thanvg View Post
    Bruce, I think this work deserves a bit larger pics, can't admire much from these thumbnails...! Looks beautiful but from far away
    Thank you Thanos!

    I don't know why the PM albums shrink some of my photos and keep other ones a reasonable size. I have written to their technical support people (Jessica!) to ask.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ballen View Post
    Thank you Thanos!

    I don't know why the PM albums shrink some of my photos and keep other ones a reasonable size. I have written to their technical support people (Jessica!) to ask.
    I have the same problem, unless I take a bunch of additional steps. The one factor I discovered that makes a big difference is "image quality". i.e. on a Mac, therte is a setting for image quality. When it is set to least, then PM does not reduce the image size to something too small to be useful. I think image quality is the same as pixel depth. i.e. the PM BBS software does not deal well with images that use a lot of bits per pixel, even though most modern cameras and smart phones generate images with lots of bits per pixel. I started a thread in general, and Milacron even responded to it, but I don't think anything has happened or is likely to change unless a lot of people let Don know exactly what the problem is.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rimcanyon View Post
    I have the same problem, unless I take a bunch of additional steps. The one factor I discovered that makes a big difference is "image quality". i.e. on a Mac, therte is a setting for image quality. When it is set to least, then PM does not reduce the image size to something too small to be useful. I think image quality is the same as pixel depth. i.e. the PM BBS software does not deal well with images that use a lot of bits per pixel, even though most modern cameras and smart phones generate images with lots of bits per pixel. I started a thread in general, and Milacron even responded to it, but I don't think anything has happened or is likely to change unless a lot of people let Don know exactly what the problem is.
    Strange thing is that I have photos taken at the same time with the same phone, uploaded at the same time to my laptop, and from there to the PM server, all handled in identical parallel fashion. Yet in the PM album some are shrunk and some are not.

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    image file size varies depending on how well the compression algorithm handled it, PM forum software seems to automatically resize images above around 1200px in either direction and reduce them to thumbnail size (400~500px in the long direction), the other trigger probably is the image file size itself - someone tries to upload a 300kb jpeg - that gets shrunk to <100kb even though the resolution of the image wasn't that great to begin with

    so if you want consistency, reduce the resolution of the image to something like 1024px in the longer direction, which will shrink the file size already, depending on the software you use, there might be a jpeg compression quality slider on the "save as" screen, usually indexed from 1 to 10, setting of 6~7 will shrink the image file size quite well without much noticeable compression artifacts

    I usually use MS Paint that comes with Windows 7, resize to 1024pix on the longer edge, save as jpeg (it doesn't have quality setting) and it seems to work out fine

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    Quote Originally Posted by jz79 View Post
    So if you want consistency, reduce the resolution of the image to something like 1024px in the longer direction.
    Here's a test image, resized using (command line on a mac) so that the pixel count of the longer size is 1024 pixels:
    sips -Z 1024 IMG.jpg



    Edit: THAT WORKED, I'll upload the other photos the same way

    Second Edit: in fact that didn't work, but what did work was using Preview on the Mac to reduce the jpeg to lowest quality/smallest file. Here's another:


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    there seems to be a compression setting also for it, in case the 1024px file is still large because of inherited quality setting, try this:
    sips -Z 1024 IMG.jpg -s formatOptions 70

    70 is a percentage, 70 usually has no easily noticeable quality decrease, at 60 or 50 you may start to see some artifacts

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    Great result! looks awesome.


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