3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

This forum is dedicated to those hobbyists with the 3-in-1 metalworking machines. Mill-Drill-Lathes. Tips, techniques, modification and use of these machines is topical.

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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by racardon » Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:54 pm

Just read through your thread and may be too late to be of any help. Like you, I had never lifted something over a couple hundred pounds until I bought a 3 in 1 machine back in 1998. So even though it wasn't heavy by machine tool standards, it was plenty heavy for me. I used a lift similar to a shop crane, but I lifted it out of the back of a pickup, so I did not have to worry about interference with the crane legs.

First, there's a pretty good photo essay on about the same lifting problem you face at: http://www.the-alchemist.com/lifting.html

He is lifting a different machine, but it looks like he had the same challenges with using a shop crane. Hopefully, this will give you some ideas.

Good luck and let us know how you finally got it done.

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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by PopolZ » Tue Sep 09, 2014 7:07 pm

Hi guys, newbie here but I'll throw my 2 cents.
Just got my B2229 in my basement. I took both motors off, the mill head, the chuck, the tail stock and the table off.
The bed is heavy and quite unbalanced but can be managed by 2 guys.

For the reassembly I'd recommend 2 persons to put the mill head back on. It's heavy and with the machine on its stand it's a handful to raise at your shoulder height.
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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by Jim Jakosh » Tue Sep 09, 2014 9:33 pm

I have a 800# milling machine made by Smithy who makes the 3 in 1 machines and it came in this huge crate. I first welded up a table on casters with the appropriate screw mounting holes. Then I raised the machine from the crate to the table with a 1300# electric hoist from Harbor Freight. I wrapped chains around the mill and hooked them to the cable hook and it moved very smoothly onto the new table. That hoist gets used every week for the tractors or anything heavy. I have it mounted on a trolly that runs on 3 2x6's with 1/4" steel plates on the top. It gets most anything lifted.


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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by rrdstarr » Wed Oct 29, 2014 10:10 pm

Too little, too late I am afraid!

I bought a 1 ton chain hoist and a pair of 6' lifting straps attached with a clevis to the hoist. I did two lifts, one off the shipping pallet using the beam in the middle of the garage using a closed eye screw and down onto the wife's garden cart. Moved the garden cart over to my bench in the garage. Installed a single closed eye screw into the truss in the ceiling and hoisted to my bench which is 40" high. I am 6'5", hence the reason the bench is so high. No problems, did it all on my own. My Shop Fox M1018 3 in 1 weighs about 480lbs.

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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by wolframore » Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:21 pm


Mine sat on the skid on dollies until I figured out how to take it apart.

milling head off
tail stock off
compound/cross slide off

If you need to lighten some more then take the motor off.

I jacked the main casting up to the bench using a motorcycle jack. Then a short lift with help of a friend.


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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by 16WhiteColly » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:55 pm

I used a friend’s engine hoist to unload mine off the trailer, and move it into a small room behind my garage. Worked very good.
40 year retired machinist.

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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by NP317 » Tue Jun 09, 2020 1:26 am

You mentioned not having the "3/4" rods" to place through the lifting holes.
When I moved my 1500 lb lathe I used 1" steel plumbing pipes through those lifting holes!
Worked fine, making sure the straps to the pipes are held so they cannot slip of the pipe ends.

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Re: 3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by TomB » Tue Jun 09, 2020 1:56 pm

When I got my 3-in1 (the 1300# type) they loaded it in the back of my pickuup (it was all boxed) and I drove it home. Backed into my garage and proceeded to unloading it with my collection of lifting things. I connected onto the headstock end with a chain hoist hooked to my homemade rafter joists. I put a 2x 8 over several joists to share the load. I also put my engine hoist behind and under the truck and rigged it to lift the tail end. When I had the cartoon several inches above the truck bed I drove out from under it. I then proceeded to lower it to ground while stopping to prop it up once or twice while I rearranged chain lengths. Once it was on the ground and unboxed I found I could remove the top assembly with the mill motor and spindle attached, the tailstock and the table. Each of the pieces were lifted by a 2-wheel hand truck and move across the backyard and into the house's cellar stairs. Most of the parts i could roll down the stairs one step at a time. The top assembly and the lathe bed was too much for me to handle strictly bu holding the 2-wheel truck back so I rigged a block and tackle to assist lowering the 2-wheel truck down the steps. Years latter when I moved from NY to VT I simply reversed the process at both ends of the move.

My chain hoist is 1 ton and my engine hoist is 2 ton. But I've found the ratings mean different things. The engine hoist can lift 2 tons when its beam is in the short position. But the rating on the chain hoist is different. It apparently can hold 1 ton with its chains and hooks but I can't pull the chain hard enough to lift 1 ton by myself. The mechanical advantage of the two pulleys does not reduce the pull sufficiently. But I have found that if both my son and I pull on the chain we can lift a 1500+ lb engine. 40 years ago when I bought the chain hoist that was about the only affordable approach. Then engine hoists were very pricey. Now a large engine hoist that HF is typically on sale for $150 and I have found they work well. Right now mine is setting on the tennis court after just pulling 4 foot of rotted off court fence pole out of the ground.

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3 in 1 Machine - How Do You Move This 507 lb Machine?

Post by thunderskunk » Wed Jun 10, 2020 8:17 am

I really hope the OP figured this out; 6 years is a long time to do all your machining in the prone from the floor.
"We'll cross that bridge once we realize nobody ever built one."

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