Grinding removable Leblond lathe ways - Page 4
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    Hi mister honey and chevy43,
    I know this is an old thread but I am wondering if you guys were successful in regrinding your Leblond ways off the machine.
    I have a 2B machine (1959 13") that I am fixing up. The steel ways are not badly worn with only about .002 of dip but the problem is that I am adding a 5c collet closer and the lathe was worked its whole live with a standard chuck. So with moving the saddle a few inches closer to the spindle it is rapidly riding up on the unworn portion of the front way. This is causing about .001 of taper within the first inch from the collet.
    I feel that if the ways were only gound enough to remove this wear the saddle drop would be less than .002 Of course I might have to do a little scraping to the underside of the saddle. By the way, the saddle shows almost no wear. Not what I was expecting.
    Anyway, if you guys are still on this forum and have an experience to share with this I would appreciate it!
    Cheers,
    Michael

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey G View Post
    Hi mister honey and chevy43,
    I know this is an old thread but I am wondering if you guys were successful in regrinding your Leblond ways off the machine.
    I have a 2B machine (1959 13") that I am fixing up. The steel ways are not badly worn with only about .002 of dip but the problem is that I am adding a 5c collet closer and the lathe was worked its whole live with a standard chuck. So with moving the saddle a few inches closer to the spindle it is rapidly riding up on the unworn portion of the front way. This is causing about .001 of taper within the first inch from the collet.
    I feel that if the ways were only gound enough to remove this wear the saddle drop would be less than .002 Of course I might have to do a little scraping to the underside of the saddle. By the way, the saddle shows almost no wear. Not what I was expecting.
    Anyway, if you guys are still on this forum and have an experience to share with this I would appreciate it!
    Cheers,
    Michael
    Quick and cheaper approach is probably to move your 5C closer further out.

    Any lathe stout enough to even have ever HAD inserted "tool-steel" ways will assuredly also have the spindle to safely do that, a 5C being actually a pipsqeak on a lathe that probably used "real" collets in a far heavier series and larger bore anyway.

    "Heavy" lathe, small work a 5C OD-grabber supports? You can also move the tooling to put the carriage further off the problem spot.

    5C step and pot - which go clear to 7 inches? Different story? Even then, only maybe. Hang ten with the tooling, and stiffen it up. Those cannot support heavy cuts in any case.

    Otherwise, a nose mounted key cranker, thicker backplate the El Cheapo but slow. A 5C sub-master in 2J, 3J or larger-yet power closer (commodity items, those are) more costly but fast.

    Going directly over to 2J or larger on an inherently longer-body "manual loop type" nose closer or a powered closer the least re-engineering.

    IOW - the ways are OK everywhere else, work around that spot and JF go coin revenue. Several ways that can be done, above list is not complete.

    5C ain't "critical path" enough to cause me to even walk across the shop.

    I already HAVE those alternatives, and several more.

    "Run watcha got" on the heavy Iron, alter what you can lift with one hand.

    Faster that way always. Cheaper at least "often" as well.

    2CW

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    As the previous poster noted that this is a very old posting. The powerplant that I worked at had a LeBlond lathe that had the hardened removable ways. The question that always crossed my mind is if the ways can be swapped end for end, this would place the non used tailstock end at the headstock. Has anyone looked to see if this would be low cost solution ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by lou View Post
    As the previous poster noted that this is a very old posting. The powerplant that I worked at had a LeBlond lathe that had the hardened removable ways. The question that always crossed my mind is if the ways can be swapped end for end, this would place the non used tailstock end at the headstock. Has anyone looked to see if this would be low cost solution ?
    "Right here on PM" and four or more years back IF I recall it correctly. there was an L&S lathe in Kamloops, BC, where the ways had been swapped.

    In "at least" the case of that L&S, the fasteners were not symmetrical and the ways were left gap-bed-style short at the HS end and visibly protruding - I'd guess 8 inches - into thin, and unsupported AIR at the TS end. That may or may not apply here. it may or may not affect usefullness if it does.There is at least one other lathe wherein the securing mechanism is indifferent so, yes, on that one (Pacemaker, perhaps?) the ways could be reversed. Providing, of course, that the vees are symmetrical. Not all are.

    Also on PM there are at least two threads wherein such ways HAVE been ground. Challenging to transport them without bending, I am sure, but there are still shops that can do it properly.

    NONE of these is a "low cost" solution, however.

    Removal and reinstallation of the carriage even if no work were to be done to its underside bearing area is a decidedly "non trivial" exercise in time and labour alone. The beds the inlaid ways repose on and in require significant effort to clean-up due to coolant initiated corrosion and/or simple atmospheric moisture applied over long years in their working fit area.

    Installing a Hardinge or similar rod-operated 2J loop or "nose closer" isn't free, but probably solves the immediate problem if not more to come about as quickly and with the least labour as can be expected.

    Another option - which I ALSO have - is a nose-mount closer for the superb Burnerd Multi-size, or its cousin, the Crawford Multi-grip, both "600 Group" properties at present, and still available if one has hit a large lottery or has a decent house to mortgage. "Least cost" is not even resident on the same Continent, IOW.

    The longer closer, either nose-closer tribe, would, however, also consume a portion of the long-axis daylight.

    That is a feature, not a bug, given the specific wear issue herein.

    Small as the max stock the 5C handles? I'd start with at least TRYING to see if I by simply offsetting the toolpost to avoid the "ramp" effect in the as-had ways could enable completion of the tasking already on the OP's Dance Card. That might be faster than by any other "solution".

    2CW

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey G View Post
    Hi mister honey and chevy43,
    I know this is an old thread but I am wondering if you guys were successful in regrinding your Leblond ways off the machine.
    I have a 2B machine (1959 13") that I am fixing up. The steel ways are not badly worn with only about .002 of dip but the problem is that I am adding a 5c collet closer and the lathe was worked its whole live with a standard chuck. So with moving the saddle a few inches closer to the spindle it is rapidly riding up on the unworn portion of the front way. This is causing about .001 of taper within the first inch from the collet.
    I feel that if the ways were only gound enough to remove this wear the saddle drop would be less than .002 Of course I might have to do a little scraping to the underside of the saddle. By the way, the saddle shows almost no wear. Not what I was expecting.
    Anyway, if you guys are still on this forum and have an experience to share with this I would appreciate it!
    Cheers,
    Michael
    Not suggesting that this is the proper way but one method would be to move the headstock...

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    Quote Originally Posted by lou View Post
    Not suggesting that this is the proper way but one method would be to move the headstock...
    On a 1959, geared-head, screwcutting lathe?

    An equally viable method involves a smelter, and the search for a replacement lathe, Pilgrim.

    It is not hardly a split-bed stone-age P&W or Cataract, sled-dog-urine-tanned Pterosaur leather or Indian hemp and gutta percha belt drive!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey G View Post
    Hi mister honey and chevy43,
    I know this is an old thread but I am wondering if you guys were successful in regrinding your Leblond ways off the machine.

    Anyway, if you guys are still on this forum and have an experience to share with this I would appreciate it!
    Cheers,
    Michael
    Attached is a scan from a 1962 LeBlond publication showing a lathe bed and a sectioned "hard bar" as we called the hardened bedways. As I recall, the hard bars were made from AISI 6150 material (last two digits for %C may be incorrect) and were originally flame hardened, later induction hardened. Note the case depth on three sides of the hard bar. The fourth side was left "soft" and mounting holes were drilled and tapped into that surface.

    Notice the bed photo. The rear hard bar overhangs the bed casting to the right, which means that the tapped holes were not located on the center of the hard bar. This prevents flipping the rear way end for end, as lou inquired.

    The front 20° angle way is similar in that the tapped mounting holes are on a 20° (or 70° depending upon your point of reference) angle to the underside of the hard bar. In other words, the clearance holes for the mounting bolts are drilled & counterbored from and are perpendicular to the underside of the bed. The result is no end for end flipping here either.

    As an experiment, I had my rear hard bar reground on the top surface only and the front hard bar reground on the top and side surfaces, that the carriage would bear against. I calculated the amounts of stock removal for each bar, so that the carriage would maintain its original orientation... neither running uphill nor downhill after both hard bars were reinstalled on the bed. I fully expected to scrape the underside of the carriage.

    No surprise, both hard bars curled like a dead man's toes making them unusable. Removing material from the hardened surfaces unbalanced the internal stresses and warped both hard bars. I chose not to pull the warp out with the mounting bolts.

    I was fortunate in that a local used machinery dealer was scrapping a 78 inch center capacity LeBlond and I bought both hard bars. My LeBlond lathe is a 36 inch center capacity and I simply cut off the worn portion at the headstock end of the 78 inch hard bars and mounted the lightly used remaining length to my 36 inch center capacity bed.

    Mikey G, you could try removing equal amounts of material from the top and bottom surfaces of your hard bars and they may or may not remain flat. Remember the front way mounting holes are on an angle, so its possible to remove enough material that the mounting bolts could bind in their holes, requiring enlarging or elongating the clearance holes in the bed casting.

    Mike

    PS: traytopjohnny and I are both retired and doing well here in Cincinnati.

    bed_hard_bars.jpg

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    First misstep would be to remove them. And if they bow up on you??? Hardened and ground tool steel just may have some induced stresses from eons of the saddle sliding back and forth

    The only certain way is to grind them in situ - which naturally means anything in the way was removed

    Oopps I see Mike nailed the subject

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    it would seem directly at the chuck and after the tail would be still near perfect/original. to measure there would give indication of the prospects of success of a .003 or so grind.

    Agree skim grinding old hardened bars can be difficult.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mister honey View Post

    No surprise, both hard bars curled like a dead man's toes making them unusable. Removing material from the hardened surfaces unbalanced the internal stresses and warped both hard bars. I chose not to pull the warp out with the mounting bolts.

    bed_hard_bars.jpg
    Thanks for the insights and suggestions All.
    That is the sort of pitfall that my "what could go wrong?" thinking missed.

    A friend had a Hardinge L0 mount 5C closer he was not using so I can mount that up for now as it puts the carriage in a better location. This will work for now but we do a lot of small parts and I have a nice Royal lever closer I was going to mount since it is fast.
    I have had the machine mostly torn down. Scraped the compound and cross-slide, new screws, reground spindle nose and everything was looking really nice until I discovered this...
    Heck, even the gear box has a perfect set of teeth. Hard to imagine as Leblond told me this machine was originally sold to a high school in Denver.
    Maybe someday I'll pull the headstock and get the whole thing re-gound. It is almost perfect in every other way.
    Cheers,
    Michael

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey G View Post
    Thanks for the insights and suggestions All.
    That is the sort of pitfall that my "what could go wrong?" thinking missed.

    A friend had a Hardinge L0 mount 5C closer he was not using so I can mount that up for now as it puts the carriage in a better location. This will work for now but we do a lot of small parts and I have a nice Royal lever closer I was going to mount since it is fast.
    I have had the machine mostly torn down. Scraped the compound and cross-slide, new screws, reground spindle nose and everything was looking really nice until I discovered this...
    Heck, even the gear box has a perfect set of teeth. Hard to imagine as Leblond told me this machine was originally sold to a high school in Denver.
    Maybe someday I'll pull the headstock and get the whole thing re-gound. It is almost perfect in every other way.
    Cheers,
    Michael
    This is not a disaster. First-off Royal or any other "good" rear-lever, if you are in serious production, go and get a POWER closer.

    EITHER WAY, it's a cotton-picking drawtube, and 5C drawtube material is a commodity, sold in various running lengths, already threaded!

    Space that closer to be assured you are far enough out to avoid the wear-ramp, PROVIDE decent covers, proper cleaning, and "enough" way-lube?

    You could run that old hoss another 25 years without further work on the ways. You, or your successor, will have "gone CNC" before even half that time has elapsed. You will HAVE to. Wages ain't going down nor bills in general.

    Meanwhile you won't REALLY have spent all that much on power actuation as didn't pay itself back in the first year of no-extra-pay-FOR-it manual armswing saved.

    Run whatcha got. But don't run it like Grand Dad did unless you are happy with Grand Dad's wages and can get vittles and taxes at Grand Dad's spend.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thermite View Post
    This is not a disaster. First-off Royal or any other "good" rear-lever, if you are in serious production, go and get a POWER closer.

    EITHER WAY, it's a cotton-picking drawtube, and 5C drawtube material is a commodity, sold in various running lengths, already threaded!

    Space that closer to be assured you are far enough out to avoid the wear-ramp, PROVIDE decent covers, proper cleaning, and "enough" way-lube?

    You could run that old hoss another 25 years without further work on the ways. You, or your successor, will have "gone CNC" before even half that time has elapsed. You will HAVE to. Wages ain't going down nor bills in general.

    Meanwhile you won't REALLY have spent all that much on power actuation as didn't pay itself back in the first year of no-extra-pay-FOR-it manual armswing saved.

    Run whatcha got. But don't run it like Grand Dad did unless you are happy with Grand Dad's wages and can get vittles and taxes at Grand Dad's spend.
    I do have a lever closer with a tube that is extra long, a spare L0 chuck adapter plate and the 5C MT5 adapter. I could machine up a round and bore an MT5 hole and I would have an extender. (not doing THAT many parts that a power closer would make sense, but I get your point!)
    Any suggestions for what material to make the extender out of?
    Happy Turkey Day,
    Michaelleblond_13.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey G View Post
    I do have a lever closer with a tube that is extra long, a spare L0 chuck adapter plate and the 5C MT5 adapter. I could machine up a round and bore an MT5 hole and I would have an extender. (not doing THAT many parts that a power closer would make sense, but I get your point!)
    Any suggestions for what material to make the extender out of?
    Happy Turkey Day,
    Michaelleblond_13.jpg
    Season for it or not, I'd recommend avoiding Jellied Cranberry sauce or chestnut stuffing.

    What else yah got handy? Don't tell us you are only tooled to cut shiney-wood?

    More seriously, I'm no longer convinced it is going to work.

    From the highest zoom I can get and not go grainy, that photo is telling me your wear is spread over a longer range than your first posting thinks it is.

    Very possible all you do even if the 5C is moved out two or three inches is change the taper to half what it is now. But still have a taper, regardless.

    You would be better-off to go ahead replace the way and do a proper carriage underside rebuild. Old ways are likely to curl? So what. Rather than pay to FIGHT that, just bypass the need. A new inserted way can be made if not found in stock.

    Makers of blades for shears and certain types of dies work in similar material every day of the week. They can get it as flat and straight as it needs to be. It's what they do.
    Last edited by thermite; 11-21-2018 at 10:06 PM.

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    I may have missed you saying this, But did you align the bed of the machine using a precision level? I once had a customer call me and he said his LeBlond needed a rebuild. When I arrived the machine was not sitting on the factory leveling plates and the leveling screws were sitting on the concrete floor cock-eyed. It was cutting a .001" per inch taper. We aligned the bed dead nuts from end to end it cut true as hell. If you will only be turning out of the collet and not between centers or using a boring bar to do the ID, then if the machine still cuts a taper after a proper align/level then you can twist the bed until it turns straight.

    Over the years I have pulled the ways off a Leblond and had them ground. Just magnet-ing the down without any special fixture as the front rail sets on the angle and the hold down bolts under the bed that hold it on are vertical and when the are tightened you pull in down to the raised ledge planned into the bed. Works slicker the shisen in straighten the bowed rail.

    As I am writing this I am thinking as a simple solution if you mic'ed the rail and it mike's small or worn up there by the collet you could loosen the first 2 pull down bolts and slide in a .0005" or .001" shim and re-tighten so the rail bows in on the chuck end. Or when they installed the ground rail the did not seat that rail properly, had a burr or some crud under their. I would do some detective work with a .0015 or .001" feeler gage between the rail and the raised front edge.
    Last edited by Richard King; 11-21-2018 at 11:39 PM.

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    The machine is level to well within .0005"/ft (according to my Russian level and my metric conversion). However, I did level it with the level sitting on the saddle and then running it end to end so it is possible wear in the ways caused a little error. It also seems to be level and not bowed left to right.

    I am able to get a micrometer across the wide dimension of the front way strip and check its width along the lathe bed. I measured every 2" and charted it. The worst spot was -1.6 thousandths. (1.4984") The top surface of the way is not worn at the edges so I was able to use a depth micrometer to look at how much wear is there. My dept mic is only graduated by .001" so it was a crude guesstimate of .0006" at the most worn spot.
    It seems the narrow surface sustains more wear than the wide surface by about 3x. It also seems this wear more directly translates to part cutting error.

    Anyway, Richard, I like the idea of trying to bow some of the error out with some shims. There is a fairly steep "ramp" at about 6-8" from the lest end of the strip but it might work.
    I suppose I could also do a little scraping with a carbide scraper on the very end to remove the inflection.

    Thanks to all for reading this and thinking about my problem. How fortunate to have such a knowledgeable and experienced group of folks willing to help!!

    Michael

    PS. The double hump in the wear chart I believe is caused by the fact that the saddle is only contacting the front ways out at the end of the wings. When I had the saddle off I was really surprised to see such a small contact surface and so little wear. It appears to have been very hastily fitted to the lathe back in 1959!

    leblond_13_front_way_wear_chart.jpgworst_wear.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikey G View Post
    It appears to have been very hastily fitted to the lathe back in 1959!
    Regal was the low-priced spread in the LeBlond line .... still a nice lathe but not the one they spent the big money on. I see yours has the levers for changing speed, yay ! that stupid twist knob thing on the later ones sucks.


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