WTB: Some Method to Cut Internal Keyways
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  1. #1
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    Default WTB: Some Method to Cut Internal Keyways

    Need to Acquire the capability to cut internal keyways:

    Also would appreciate suggestions on pros & cons of options:
    -Arbor Press and Broaches
    -Vertical Slotter e.g. Pratt Whitney 6” Model B
    -Shaper
    -Keyway Slotter (Davis, etc)
    -K & T Horizontal mill Slotter attachment
    -Home made Vertical Slotter for Horizontal mill.
    -I’m not interested in EDM at this time.

    I have a home machine shop and currently do not have internal Key Way capability. I would like a solution that won’t break the bank, as I see this as a capability I will use infrequently, primarily for cutting Keyways in some gears.

    What machines I have:
    K & T 307 S12 horizontal universal
    K & T 205 S12 vertical
    Cleerman Layout Drill
    Hendey-Barber Coleman 20-113 Lathe
    Monarch 10EE 1969 model lathe

    Thanks for any affordable purchase options or equipment/tooling leads.
    I am located in the southern most and central KY near Dale Hollow Lake/Byrdstown area.

    Kind Regards, Ken


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    You left out the most important parts. What size and how frequently? Putting a shaper cutter in the tool post of your Monarch and using the carriage as a hand shaper will do well with 3/16 and smaller, and work ok with 1/4. The vertical shaper will do good with keys to 3/4 single pass, and wider multiple pass, but requires as much room as your K&T mills.

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    What Gbent said. K&T made slotter ATTACHMENTS, too. I have one. It was adapted to an "alien" mill. USMT "Quartet". Serious bit of kit, mass according. BirdPort had lighter ones.

    MOST of these can be adapted to hosts not their own tribe, stout horizontal mills especially.

    Advantage over a shaper or bespoke slotter "entire machine"?

    - The attachments take up near-zero SPACE.

    - Downside is more nuisance to go-fetch, install, and adjust.

    When only needed "seldom"? "BFD".

    One old Day Job where we did keyways up to to an inch and a half every one of three shifts a day? That place, a dedicated keyseater earned its keep - and a good deal of clear working SPACE around it, given it was wheels for railway goods being keyed as often as not.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gbent View Post
    You left out the most important parts. What size and how frequently? Putting a shaper cutter in the tool post of your Monarch and using the carriage as a hand shaper will do well with 3/16 and smaller, and work ok with 1/4. The vertical shaper will do good with keys to 3/4 single pass, and wider multiple pass, but requires as much room as your K&T mills.

    I would say 3/16 - 5/16, and like I did mention above in my post, infrequently.
    I will add, when I consider an acquisition to add a capability I presently don’t have I if possible like to pursue the option that also provides versatility, other capabilities, not a dedicated machine say like a key slotter, but rather say a Vertical shaper, depending on cost.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mac007 View Post

    I would say 3/16 - 5/16, and like I did mention above in my post, infrequently.
    I will add, when I consider an acquisition to add a capability I presently don’t have I if possible like to pursue the option that also provides versatility, other capabilities, not a dedicated machine say like a key slotter, but rather say a Vertical shaper, depending on cost.
    Slotter or shaper can do splines and gears as well as keyways if you NEED that capability - or just "want it".

    Person would need to do rather a lot OF them, any given year, before it made economic sense over just buying gears and splines from those who do them all day, every day and sending any other critical keyway work out for EDM. Most ESPECIALLY if a GEAR had been laboriously crafted "the hard way" and wasn't meant to be f**ked up in the 11th hour with a sidegodlin keyway.

    Even with HAVING both of shaper and slotter, use can be a seriously tedious pain in the anatomy. I'm far more likely to drill out the "meat", reach in the drawer for a "push" broach to square up the corners.

    Even then only WHEN I cannot reach in a different drawer and use a ready-made "QD" hub packratted cheaply off eBay!

    Get used to the "QD" system, yah don't really want to go back to naked keys and keyways.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mac007 View Post

    I would say 3/16 - 5/16, and like I did mention above in my post, infrequently.
    I will add, when I consider an acquisition to add a capability I presently don’t have I if possible like to pursue the option that also provides versatility, other capabilities, not a dedicated machine say like a key slotter, but rather say a Vertical shaper, depending on cost.
    Tough to beat an arbor press with broaches for that size range. Given that wonderful mix of machines, i would think you'd want a nice big ratcheting arbor press anyway. A shaper is super cool but takes up more than its' fair share of floor space for the work envelope. I've got a beautiful heavy duty 16" Cincinnati universal shaper. It takes up more space that my universal horizontal mill and the work envelope is only a 16" cube. Conscious decision on my part because, like you, i'm a hobbiest and my priorities reflect it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by marka12161 View Post
    Tough to beat an arbor press with broaches for that size range. Given that wonderful mix of machines, i would think you'd want a nice big ratcheting arbor press anyway. A shaper is super cool but takes up more than its' fair share of floor space for the work envelope. I've got a beautiful heavy duty 16" Cincinnati universal shaper. It takes up more space that my universal horizontal mill and the work envelope is only a 16" cube. Conscious decision on my part because, like you, i'm a hobbiest and my priorities reflect it.

    Mark, very well said. And yes, as a hobbiest, I struggle between PRACTICAL and “I JUST WANT IT “. LOL
    One of the things that tempts me on a Vertical Slotter is the Rotary Table and like Thermite said, IF I ever needed to, I could do internal splines.

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    Vertical shapers (P&W) are serious floor space users and amazingly heavy - about 8400 on my 12"

    On the other hand they are just plain fun to own - their quite competent personalities are easy to live with

    p1000540sm.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnoder View Post
    Vertical shapers (P&W) are serious floor space users and amazingly heavy - about 8400 on my 12"

    On the other hand they are just plain fun to own - their quite competent personalities are easy to live with

    p1000540sm.jpg
    John, Yes I had noticed you have participated in several threads regarding Vertical Shapers/Slotters & that you had the 12” P&W. That is a very interesting part your making on your 12”. I like the versatility one would add to my shop. Do you have any thoughts on how well it would cut a keyway?

    If I can get a 6” for around $1,800 would that be a good purchase?

    Kind Regards, Ken

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mac007 View Post

    I would say 3/16 - 5/16, and like I did mention above in my post, infrequently.
    I will add, when I consider an acquisition to add a capability I presently don’t have I if possible like to pursue the option that also provides versatility, other capabilities, not a dedicated machine say like a key slotter, but rather say a Vertical shaper, depending on cost.

    Vertical slotter would be the most versatile, or a slotter attachment on a mill. You don't have to go as big as a Pratt & Whitney, there are smaller machines, like the Douglas 7A. Not as common, but still available at times. The ultimate combo for versatility for me would be a Deckel with a slotter attachment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnoder View Post
    Vertical shapers (P&W) are serious floor space users and amazingly heavy - about 8400 on my 12"

    On the other hand they are just plain fun to own - their quite competent personalities are easy to live with

    p1000540sm.jpg
    For comparison.. my 12" Sheldon shaper weighs only a tad over 1800 Avoir.

    The 7" or 7 1/2" K&T slotter attachment I'll have to wheel over to where I can get the chainfalls on it and put a scale under. I can't "really" lift it with old muscles. Or their memories, actually.

    Heavy as it is, it would still be by far the lightest (and most physically compact) of the lot herein under discussion.

    Mind.. yah have to ADD the stout mill it is attached TO to be fair! But if yah already HAVE ome of those... then it is only the handling and setting-up nuisance.

    "Moreover.." a horizontal shaper wants a seriously stout angle-plate to work wheels - external or internal bore work, either one. Even so, there is more to it w/r keeping the table level and aligned to the path of the ram.

    John's P&W vertical is built to put the force directly toward its stout frame and table. Deflection or sag that could interfere with precise alignment are not the challenge they could become on a horizontal ram shaper.

    Page Two:

    "Ratchet type arbour press"? Sorta "grew up" on one. Hand-pulled as we tested our work on progressive dies for our punch-presses. A H-F or better hydraulic easily has the push. What it does NOT have is the same "grade' of guided ram of the arbour press.

    Trying to push a broach with an open-frame, general-purpose hydraulic is... well... shall we say: "a bit of a gamble?". Not one all-hands should take.

    "Swings and roundabouts" on internal keyways.

    I do still have the right sort of stacked saw blades, cold chisels, and hand files...


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    We currently use the arbor press for all of our internal key way and broaching needs. While being the most economical and taking the least space, there are some times that it's just a pain to hold all the bits together at the same time and keep the broach from biting too deep. It becomes less of an operation and more of a skill or craft. I've really wanted to get a vertical shaper or slotter... but the floor space has been an issue, and they don't seem too common anymore. A standard horizontal shaper would be more available.

    For us, I think EDM will be what ends up on the floor one day. I think that would be the best "modern" solution, as it can get into many other operations like hardened material cutting, intricate shapes, thin wall work, and the all too common broke tap removal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by M.B. Naegle View Post
    We currently use the arbor press for all of our internal key way and broaching needs. While being the most economical and taking the least space, there are some times that it's just a pain to hold all the bits together at the same time and keep the broach from biting too deep. It becomes less of an operation and more of a skill or craft. I've really wanted to get a vertical shaper or slotter... but the floor space has been an issue, and they don't seem too common anymore. A standard horizontal shaper would be more available.

    For us, I think EDM will be what ends up on the floor one day. I think that would be the best "modern" solution, as it can get into many other operations like hardened material cutting, intricate shapes, thin wall work, and the all too common broke tap removal.
    Yer already "in to" two tribes of EDM, though. Wire & sinker.

    Not a "BAD thing". but there's that balance of idle vs useful, "consumables" & service, hire vs own, and whom on staff has kept-up with the expertise to use a(ny) machine effectively. Or not.

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    If you do mostly smallish stuff a die filer might do.
    They are also great for other hand built stuff.

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    Shaper can do some other stuff like dovetails. But arbor press does alot of other pressing duties . I have 16" and did some keyways. Didnt have to make a special broch plug for a 1 off project. Has been sitting idle for a year. The arbor press i would use ALOT more often

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    Do you have any thoughts on how well it would cut a keyway?
    Did good

    p1000397sm.jpgp1000398sm.jpg

    I cheated and made as large a bar as would fit and also used a set of three tools since it was so long

    p1000390sm.jpgp1000391sm.jpgp1000395sm.jpg


    If I can get a 6” for around $1,800 would that be a good purchase?
    Sure if not wasted. I once looked at a 6" that had the back of the ram (the surface you can't see much of) completely furrowed - like it never had a drop of oil

    If you get a 6" I'll commit to scanning the manuals and sending them via email - if they aren't already on VM

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mac007 View Post

    If I can get a 6” for around $1,800 would that be a good purchase?

    Depending on condition, simply usable for $1800 would be cheap.

    As far as keyways, the PO had my P&W pushing 3/4 wide keyways in Rc40, 8" long, 6 per piece.

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    The auction just ended and I was the successful bidder
    I guess that answers my Thread LOL.
    Now I have to go get it.

    John would love the manual. [email protected]

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    ​Here she is

    66c2459f-77b8-45c7-911a-86e2d590e45d.jpg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mac007 View Post
    ​Here she is

    66c2459f-77b8-45c7-911a-86e2d590e45d.jpg
    GOOD ON YAH!

    Now.. the REST of us know whom to go to for internal keyways!


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