Experiences with power draw bars?
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  1. #1
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    Default Experiences with power draw bars?

    Interested in getting a power draw bar. I do not want to cobble up my own setup. Seems like there are 3 readily available options:

    Kurt Powerlock Power Drawbar:

    PowerLock Power Drawbars


    Speedy Air Power Drawbar:

    Speedy Air Power Draw Bar: Stock Feeds For Manual + CNC Milling Machines


    Maxi Torque Rite Air Power Drawbar:

    Maxi Torque Rite Air Power Draw Bar All of Our Models


    Does any have personal experience with any of these. I have found limited feedback.

    Thanks in advance.

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    I think the reason is that they are not so useful and in that light, not common. I mean the 2 or 3 minutes it saves is irrelevant at the end of the job.

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    huh? I couldn't live (ok, overstatement) without mine. I have a Kurt - works fine. I change tools in seconds and dozens of times a day. No more ladder, brake, tap, wrench, fiddle. Zip... done. Don't even need the brake.

    Put an inline oiler on it.

    I've used a Maxi. Quieter, Seemed ok but I didn't get much time on it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve-l View Post
    I think the reason is that they are not so useful and in that light, not common. I mean the 2 or 3 minutes it saves is irrelevant at the end of the job.
    All depends on your use.
    If you change tools 10-20 times per hour those minutes add up to a lot.
    Even 3 tools per hour which most B-port jobs do.

    I use low buck ones like Enco used to sell. The air lines break after years and have to be replaced.
    The cheapo bowls on the filter/regulator crack or leak with time and also have to be replaced
    The little screw on the impact socket needs some loctite.

    I have not put an actual wrench on a B-port or clone drawbar in decades.
    One of those things that if I see a machine without one I tend to think the shop is a bit crude.
    Once you run with one, brand or import you will never want to be without one again.
    I rate this add-on before a DRO purchase, but depends on your use.

    Have used the Kurt with no problems, no experience with your others. It is a fairly simple impact wrench arrangement.
    Prefer the systems with a pull down/push up lever over push buttons.
    Gives a sort of built in feel to what you are doing so it is thoughtless.
    Sort of a user friendly interface. Bam-Bam done, no paying attention, no thinking, no distractions from the job at hand.
    Bob

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    I've got two Maxi Torque Rites. Nice and smooth. Never fail, but if they did...easily rebuilt. Did have a Kurt...worked OK. Looks like the Servo is a copy of the Maxi.

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    I have a Kurt on my BP. Best thing I ever did to that machine. I hate using a mill without one now. My Kurt has been flawless and probably paid for itself in about the first week in time saved.

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    I've had end mills pull out of a collet using a cheap power drawbar. Under that kind of use/abuse, the end mill should be in a proper holder, not a collet anyway. Right now, I run a CNC bedmill (without a tool changer), and the power drawbar is a must, making a lot of tool changes all day long. It has a Max-Rite, and seems to work very well on the Cat40 tooling.

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    I've got a Kurt on my Lagun. I will never own another BP without one.

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    I used to have a Kurt on one mill before I switched it to Erickson QC. It worked fine.

    There is no way you can have the Bridgeport head at an ergonomic height for piece work and still be able to comfortably use the drawbar. I'm not a tall guy and a 4" riser makes a Bridgeport a much more convenient height. Others need the 7" riser. The risers just move the drawbar that much higher. So there is always a small step stool somewhere around, and always in the way.

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    I had a couple of Kurts on CNC knee mills. They worked for about 20 years, still working when the machines left the building.
    One had a handle that swung one way for tightening, the other way for loosening. Super easy to use, no issues with height. The other had a button control, on a breacket mounted to the head. Height not right? Just move the bracket. again, super easy and reliable.

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    MushCreek spoke of tool pullout, others ive heard have too, especially with larger tools and heavier cuts. my 1st thought would be to give the change a second shot of ratchet. 2nd thought would be to replace the air ratchet with one a little more powerful. anyone have any thoughts or input on this? the tool pullout ive read about is whats kept me away from a power drawbar of this type. thanks.

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    Never had pullout, as long as everything was correct. Spindle bore clean and undamaged, etc. Mine was NMTB30 taper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by metlcutr55 View Post
    MushCreek spoke of tool pullout, others ive heard have too, especially with larger tools and heavier cuts. my 1st thought would be to give the change a second shot of ratchet. 2nd thought would be to replace the air ratchet with one a little more powerful. anyone have any thoughts or input on this? the tool pullout ive read about is whats kept me away from a power drawbar of this type. thanks.
    Never pulled a tool with my Kurt, Buy a cheap one I am sure it could happen.

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    Thanks for the responses. Obviously this is not a needed item but why not have it to limit repetitive stress.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PT Doc View Post
    Thanks for the responses. Obviously this is not a needed item but hey not have it to limit repetitive stress.
    If you are making a living off your Bridgeport a power drawbar is a "needed" item along with power feed on all axis, Servo or Bridgeport, no china junk. and not one of those mickey mouse battery drill ones on the knee.

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    Speedy and Maxi Torque seem to have the same telephone numbers listed on the web pages. I thought the pages looked equally cheesy and similar. So there you go. So maybe only two players in this arena not counting various cobbled up options on eBay.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PT Doc View Post
    Speedy and Maxi Torque seem to have the same telephone numbers listed on the web pages. I thought the pages looked equally cheesy and similar. So there you go. So maybe only two players in this arena not counting various cobbled up options on eBay.

    Seems like this company goes by the name ISMG.

    They also make another Drawbar or import this one from Australia:

    http://www.ismg4tools.com/adb.html

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    I can see how a taper might not tend to pull out, I am considering a set of 3/4 shank er collet holders, leaving the collet in and just changing the holders.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PT Doc View Post
    Seems like this company goes by the name ISMG.

    They also make another Drawbar or import this one from Australia:

    http://www.ismg4tools.com/adb.html
    All Machine Parts Inc in Grennsvill NC is the name on the actual Maxi Torque units looking at the photos provided.

    http://www.ismg4tools.com/adb.html

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    For those of you with a Maxi drawbar, does the air switch/valve they come with allow 'feathering' or is it more 'full on / full off'?

    From the look of those buttons, it seems they would not afford much finesse in the way of applying air.

    I'm wondering if something like an Air-Mite valve might work better?air-valve-mite.jpgair-valve-m.jpg


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