Got a Align Power Feeder

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Downwindtracker2
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Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:34 pm
Location: B.C.

Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by Downwindtracker2 » Tue Dec 04, 2018 5:19 pm

They were on sale at BusyBee, we were near and stopped by. It's the AL-500p model. The bracket it came with looks like it would mount to a much larger mill than my RF-45, it has a much taller four bolt mount compared to the two bolt. I guess I'm going to have to machine a new mount. :D A nice challenge.
A man of foolish pursuits, '91 BusyBee DF1224g lathe,'01 Advance RF-45 mill/drill,'68 Delta Toolmaker surface grinder,Miller250 mig,'83 8" Baldor grinder, plus sawdustmakers

pete
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Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by pete » Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:36 am

Align are supposed to be one of the better copies of the Servo power feeds. Mine's a no name version bought from Grizzly some years ago. It's ok and the bracket and everything else bolted right up to my BP clone. I get a bit more gear noise than I'd like, but apparently that's common. Finding the correct stack height of the shims to get the crown gear into proper mesh is a bit frustrating to say the least. Coating the teeth with Dykem first helped a lot. Mine has two roll pins as well as the 4 bolts holding it's bracket to the end of the table. If it were me I add those as well once you have everything adjusted into it's proper alignment unless your table already has them.

Downwindtracker2
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:34 pm
Location: B.C.

Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by Downwindtracker2 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 11:16 am

That's a good idea about the alignment pins. I wish mine would be as easy. I looked at it some last night . Most of the power feeds for a mill/drills are basically inline, leaving the mounting bracket above and bolted to the table. the one I bought is like yours, a right angle. Looking at it, I'm going to have to deal with both the axial and radial loads of the feed screw when I mount the feeder . I'll have to remove the original mounting bracket , thrust bearing and crank handle. And install the feeder all within the length constraints of the feed screw. The mill at one time had something there, so it's kind of a mess with what they did. And the Grizzly parts I put on to make the mill useable. I'm ordering new feed screw and nut to quiet down and smarten up the Drama Queen.
A man of foolish pursuits, '91 BusyBee DF1224g lathe,'01 Advance RF-45 mill/drill,'68 Delta Toolmaker surface grinder,Miller250 mig,'83 8" Baldor grinder, plus sawdustmakers

pete
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Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by pete » Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:25 pm

Yeah it's probably going to be a bit of a juggling act getting that new end bracket machined so you have your alignments correct in 3 dimensions. And lot's of measuring and trial fitting. I'm not real impressed with those inline power feeds either. I tried one years ago at the Grizzly showroom. The right angle Servo clones seem to be a lot better. Having one on my mill was the first time I'd had a mill with a power feed on the table. I think I'd give up milling if I had to go back to a mill without one. :-) It depends on the actual diameter and length on the ends of your feed screw, you may need to add a sleeve and extend it a bit anyway to fit and locate the keyed bushing they give you. If you need any dimensions from my feed screw just let me know.

Downwindtracker2
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:34 pm
Location: B.C.

Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by Downwindtracker2 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 1:26 pm

Thanks for the offer. Since both the mill and the feeder are made in Taiwan, the shaft diameters are likely the same metric size, without measuring it, they do look similar. I will need a keyway . These mill/drill set the shaft length and backlash by pinning the hand cranks, screw backlash is taken up at the nuts. I'm thinking a cup and cone bearing. I see spacers and shims in my future, I have Prussian Blue. This is an engineering challenge as well as the machining. Since I'm still just learning machining, it will be an education. It's a lot different than making a sketch and tell the machine shop to make it.
A man of foolish pursuits, '91 BusyBee DF1224g lathe,'01 Advance RF-45 mill/drill,'68 Delta Toolmaker surface grinder,Miller250 mig,'83 8" Baldor grinder, plus sawdustmakers

pete
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Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by pete » Wed Dec 05, 2018 1:59 pm

Something you might already have figured out but if not it might help. An easy way to get your feed screw measurements for it's C/L is run the table in as far as you can on the right hand end your installing the feed unit on. Then pull the hand wheel and end bracket. The feed nut on the X axis will then centralize the feed screw at least within the clearances between the nut and screw. Measure that from the top and front of the table. An indicator can then measure your Z and Y axis screw movement within the nut. Simple math then gives you your C/L from the top and front of the table. Or close enough anyway. For my mill that keyed bushing was a light press fit on the machined end of the feed screw. I've no idea if there all supposed to be that way or not since my only experience is with the one I have.

Downwindtracker2
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:34 pm
Location: B.C.

Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by Downwindtracker2 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:02 pm

I watched an Align install vid on youtube, they started out with English subtitles, like "open the box", but toward the end, the important part, it was just Chinese. The subtitle was use all the shims, nothing about adjustment .That gear bushing likely should float, making adjusting the gear much easier. If it was tight ,I feel sorry for you. Did you lose much hair? We mostly adjust by feel, instead of blueing the teeth.. Most machines tend to follow the same rules. It seemed to in the vid. I was thinking of taking my measurements off the remains of the original mounting bracket and somehow using the bolts to locate. Ever hopeful.
A man of foolish pursuits, '91 BusyBee DF1224g lathe,'01 Advance RF-45 mill/drill,'68 Delta Toolmaker surface grinder,Miller250 mig,'83 8" Baldor grinder, plus sawdustmakers

pete
Posts: 1697
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 6:04 am

Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by pete » Wed Dec 05, 2018 4:43 pm

It's probably still on there website but last time I checked Servo has about the best install directions out of any other source I've seen. There directions work with these clones. For mine you have to vary the number of shims used to set the tooth engagement on the crown gear. Shim it too loose and you chance breaking the tips of some teeth plus you'll have excess backlash when changing directions. Too tight and you get excessive wear and too much load on the motor. LOL, come to think of it maybe that's where all my hair went. :-)

If your machine didn't use roll or taper pins to locate that bracket then they would have used the method I mentioned to align the bracket to the feed screws C/L by moving the table to the far right or left for each one. The brackets attachment bolts then get tightened to hold that location. That's the way it's done on my little Emco mill. If I don't do it that way there's a misalignment and the screw binds up at each end of it's travel.

RSG
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Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by RSG » Wed Dec 05, 2018 4:45 pm

DWT,

I installed my Align power feed to a mill that didn't require the bracket, I used the holes within the cylinder. (left and right). You might have the same luck with mounting it to the machine without any adapter plate at all.
Vision is not seeing things as they are, but as they will be.

Downwindtracker2
Posts: 262
Joined: Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:34 pm
Location: B.C.

Re: Got a Align Power Feeder

Post by Downwindtracker2 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 6:16 pm

Wouldn't that be nice. I think I remember a song by that name. But the adapter plate would be more accurately called bearing housing/ adapter plate. When I fix something, I like to make better than new. While the table is a bit stiff at the ends of the travel, it's really sloppy at the center. I was hogging out a motor slot with a 3/8" 2 flute slot drill taking a .020 cut, the mill shuddered and complained. No belts to slip on a gearhead. That's why I refer to it as the Drama Queen. :lol: A new thread screw and a new nut that still has adjustment should take some of that out. I'll measure the dovetails when I have it apart and see where I go.

When someone suggests a used production machine like say a Bridgeport, I think they should also suggest a surface plate, straight edge, scrapers and a scraping class. :lol:
A man of foolish pursuits, '91 BusyBee DF1224g lathe,'01 Advance RF-45 mill/drill,'68 Delta Toolmaker surface grinder,Miller250 mig,'83 8" Baldor grinder, plus sawdustmakers

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