Haas Spindle bearings, grease spindle TM1, upper pulley bearing
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  1. #1
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    Default Haas Spindle bearings, grease spindle TM1, upper pulley bearing

    My mill is a 2011 TM1 and just the last few months the spindle started making a woo woo woo noise when started up first in the morning. Not very loud, but noticeable. Once warmed up, it stops. Last week, it started making a bit more noise even when warmed up. We investigated by removing the belt and turning the motor and spindle. It was not the motor but sounds like the upper bearing on the spindle which takes the belt radial load. This spindle is a greased spindle. But on the upper cap there is a 1/8 pipe plug. Looking at the cross section of the spindle on line, and noticing that on the top of the tool changer mechanism there is a fitting screwed to the sheet metal without any connections, just three holes with nothing screwed in.

    My assumption is that this is the same spindle that is used in the other Haas machines that are oiled and on the TM1, they saved money by eliminating the spindle oil system.

    Based on this, I unscrewed the plug and looked inside and noticed there is a screen. I inserted a push to connect fitting in the spindle, then took a clean 8" length of plastic push to connect line and filled it with Kluber NBU 15, and hooked up some air to it and forced it into the spindle. Did this twice. Rotating the spindle sounded much better. I then repeated the procedure with some clean spindle oil.

    So far the spindle sounds as before the sound started. Any one else have any knowledge about this spindle and what I should do in the future?

    I wonder if there is a way to convert it to an oiled spindle and is that a good idea?

  2. #2
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    I've wondered about lubrication on the spindle and motor for a long time now.
    Common knowledge is all grease turns to wax plugging things up eventually and the oil leaks out.
    (I'm looking at you linier rail grease system..)

  3. #3
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    It has been three months and we started to hear the howl again, but this time the howl, (more like a low hooting and quite hard to hear), was very short in duration (10 seconds at about 2K) and only on a cold start. So we lubed the bearing again. We also pulled the drawbar for an inspection. The drawbar was in very good shape, no corrosion, balls looked fine, and no cracked belleville washers. This removal of the drawbar is very easy, at lease on the TM series, and should be done periodically, maybe every 3 to 5 years depending on cycles. Haas has a procedure on their site.

    This time we put about twice as much grease in as before, estimated to be about .25 cubic inches. This was pumped into the green line by inserting the tube and squeezing by hand and then followed with some clean compressed air. Every bit of this operation was done with cleanliness in mind. A bit of grease did come out of the top of the upper labyrinth seal when we first started to run it in, which was wiped off. The spindle was then run in, slowly at first and the temperature was observed with a non-contact IR sensor. We are sure grease made it into the upper bearing because the temperature was higher and went lower after a few hours of running in. The next cold starts were without the howl.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails tm1.jpg   tm2.jpg   tm3.jpg   tm4.jpg   tm5.jpg  


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    Nice pics. Very much appreciated.

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    Thanks. Spindle has been running 6k since and doing just fine. I'm assuming some of the grease will fall down to the bottom set.

  7. #6
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    if the grease does not, the oil in it might. I should to this to my mill. thanks for the info!

    on another crazy idea note, I wonder if you could drill through the drawbar and add a union for through spindle air? (considering how easy it is to remove it would be nice to upgrade!

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    Our TMi-P started making noise when running, we thought it was the belt. Turns out, the factory installed part of a spindle lube system in it. We got the solenoid and air line, but no oil mist tank. The air pushed the grease out of the sealed spindle bearings. Where his spindle had a plug, we had an air fitting with a line to the back of the machine, where the solenoid is. We are trying the Kluber Isoflex NBU15 grease using this air system to push it into the bearings, if it works, we will unplug the solenoid till we need more grease.


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