Riser block

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RSG
Posts: 1099
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:59 am
Location: Ontario, Canada

Riser block

Post by RSG » Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:09 am

After mounting my 8" tilting rotary table on my new mill I have come to find I'm short of space between the spindle and the top of the work surface by about 4" for doing things like tapping so I've inquired about a riser block from the manufacturer of my mill. In the event they don't make one is it something I could make myself? I was told I could get a steel ring that was flame cut from a solid block then machine it. The Dia. of the ring would need to be 11.65" dia.

Anyone have any advise?
Vision is not seeing things as they are, but as they will be.

DavidF
Posts: 267
Joined: Wed May 14, 2014 12:28 pm
Location: Delaware

Re: Riser block

Post by DavidF » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:04 am

RSG wrote:
Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:09 am
After mounting my 8" tilting rotary table on my new mill I have come to find I'm short of space between the spindle and the top of the work surface by about 4" for doing things like tapping so I've inquired about a riser block from the manufacturer of my mill. In the event they don't make one is it something I could make myself? I was told I could get a steel ring that was flame cut from a solid block then machine it. The Dia. of the ring would need to be 11.65" dia.

Anyone have any advise?
Wouldnt hurt to tell us what mill you have.... :wink:

whateg0
Posts: 652
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:54 pm
Location: Wichita, KS

Re: Riser block

Post by whateg0 » Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:05 am

Seems there was a thread not long ago where somebody posted pictures of some Bridgeports (or similar) with all manner of kluged "riser devices". I don't know how much height you need, but if you can machine any registration features, I would think it's doable. I have heard that around here there are a few places that will blanchard grind stuff for cheap. I don't know what you have available up there. An alternative that I try to look for is finding a riser for another machine that can be altered to fit or made to with with an adapter ring.

Dave

RSG
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Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:59 am
Location: Ontario, Canada

Re: Riser block

Post by RSG » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:51 am

Sorry, my mill is a Precision Matthews 935VF

.............Good advice whategO
Vision is not seeing things as they are, but as they will be.

Russ Hanscom
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Location: Farmington, NM

Re: Riser block

Post by Russ Hanscom » Mon Mar 04, 2019 3:44 pm

Riser blocks are certainly doable. I have a Gorton with a 16" dia column and needed a lift of 12" or better. So;

Get two flame cut rings, slightly larger dia. than desired finish, and 3/4" or better thick. Find some pipe or tube of suitable size, I found 16" pipe. Weld together and add stiffening ribs inside. Found a lathe with an 17" swing and bolted the rough block to the face plate, shimming until it turned close to concentric. Faced the far end, then swapped ends and machined the second end. At some point, I raised the top of the mill so I could measure and match the profile of the joint. This project has been posted somewhere on Chaski, I think.

Anyway, not an overly difficult project as long as you can find a lathe to turn the work. As long as the faceplate is running true, the spacer faces will be parallel, and that is what you want.

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

Re: Riser block

Post by pete » Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:47 pm

Yep exactly what Russ said. If I recall correctly there's been a few builds of risers shown quite a few years ago on the PM forums. And it depends on what can be scrounged and your welding abilities. If it were me I think I'd start by trying to find some heavy schedule 80 or better pipe first. The flanges are the easy part and that heavy wall pipe the tough one. But with all the industry in Ontario it shouldn't be impossible. Some who have added a riser mentioned a need to reduce feeds and cut depths by a bit compared to the same machine without one. If you've got the ability's and welding gear it will help. If not? I'd be willing to bet making your own wooden pattern and having one cast from iron which would be even better would work out at about the same price if you have to hire a pro for that welding.

I just measured my 3/4 sized clone and come up with the same 11.65" dimension you did RSG. Bridgeport themselves made a 3/4 sized mill as well and I'm pretty sure Rich Carlstedt has one. Compared to the full size these smaller mills still aren't all that common so tough to say if there's any company offering risers that would fit or not. One place I'd try is H & W Machine Repair if your OEM doesn't make one. There not that far from you in Ft. Wayne ID. If anyone would know of one that would fit I think they would.

Russ Hanscom
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Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2006 11:10 pm
Location: Farmington, NM

Re: Riser block

Post by Russ Hanscom » Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:12 pm

It does not necessarily have to be heavy walled pipe, although nice if you can find it. The 16" I used was only 1/4" wall, but I did put eight or more ribs between the flanges. I did not have a loss of capacity or vibration issue; it will still push a 4" face mill across a slab with no fuss.

You can probably make 11 1/2"D or 12"D stock work; those are likely to be the closest standard sizes. If you have a good friend at a shop with rolls, any size can be made.

Depending on how high a riser you need, you could even just stack up a number of inch thick rings.

RSG
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Location: Ontario, Canada

Re: Riser block

Post by RSG » Tue Mar 05, 2019 6:02 pm

As usual Pete, you are a wealth of info.

Russ, thanks for the help. I only need to raise it 4" and you mention lifting yours higher with no vibration issues so that's a good sign. If the OEM doesn't come through then I will be reaching out to a friend who has a full scale shop and said he's turn a solid piece of 12" dia steel billet to the correct size for me. I'd prefer to reach out to the mill manufacturer for the dimensions but would pull the head off to get them as a last resort but would rather not have too.

Pete, you mention having one cast, I could do that as I have a foundry near me. Maybe I should talk to them? Then take to my friend to be turned/finished.

One last thing, as you know my shop is small, how small? (insert joke) It's so small I can't even change my mind in it! LOL so with that said I don't have the luxury of just sliding a hoist over and lift the head off so I planned to make a wooden pallet and bolt it to the table, then bolt it to the head and crank the table up 5" to do the work, anyone see any issues with this?
Vision is not seeing things as they are, but as they will be.

Russ Hanscom
Posts: 1586
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2006 11:10 pm
Location: Farmington, NM

Re: Riser block

Post by Russ Hanscom » Tue Mar 05, 2019 10:58 pm

DSC00876.JPG
To work on my mill, I bolted a pad eye to the ceiling with super drywall screws; was able to lift up the head far enough to slide in the 12" riser. No room for an engine hoist either.

Do not try this in your shop unless there is an I beam just above the sheet rock! This one holds the next floor up.

pete
Posts: 1721
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2009 6:04 am

Re: Riser block

Post by pete » Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:00 am

Fwiw I can sympathize with the small shop issues. When I first got my mill I didn't have an engine hoist either although there's just barely enough room in my shop one can be used so I now have one. However these mills are just small enough most of the parts can be removed by two people or one with a bit of thought. When re-assembling my mill after moving all the parts of it into my shop I did what your planning and used the knee with the head balanced on the spindles face on a piece of ply on the table to raise the head until the head bolts could be started into the holes. Getting all 4 of those bolts started and the head moved in with the Y axis is a bit of a pita since the bolts flop everywhere but in the right direction so having the head bolted to something sturdy would be much better. The ram is heavier than it looks so be prepared. Also open the side access panel on the column and support the spider inside with one hand as you unthread the last two of the rams cap bolts. Some mills have a cast internal lip that supports that spider from dropping to the bottom of the column. Mine doesn't so I had to go fishing for it after it dropped. The heads just manageable to be lifted by one person without the motor on it. I wouldn't want to dead lift it from the floor though. Make sure you unscrew the up / down powered spindle feed knob in the center of the handwheel before you remove the head from the mill. It's got a real delicate thread and is really easy to snap it off while moving the head. Don't ask me how I know that. :-( Oh yeah, after pulling the head you'll have to pull the threaded pin that holds the rams pinion operating shaft in place, remove that pinion shaft and then the ram will slide out. The whole jobs pretty easy and should only take an hr or 2 to re/re everything to get a riser in.

whateg0
Posts: 652
Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2009 3:54 pm
Location: Wichita, KS

Re: Riser block

Post by whateg0 » Wed Mar 06, 2019 9:23 am

It wouldn't be terribly difficult to throw together a quick A-frame above the mill for the purpose of lifting the head off. Afterward, it could be taken apart and used as stock for other projects. No more than they weigh, even wood could be used, I think, of proper dimensions.

Dave

RSG
Posts: 1099
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:59 am
Location: Ontario, Canada

Re: Riser block

Post by RSG » Wed Mar 06, 2019 10:51 am

Thanks again guys!

I'll let you know how it goes when the time comes. For now I'm still waiting to hear back on the factory made unit.
Vision is not seeing things as they are, but as they will be.

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