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ROCKWELL / BEAVER DRILL PRESS – III

ALIGNMENT

The real job starts with the alignment of the components on the post or mast of the drill press. In most cases the alignment would be checked before a machine is dismantled. I quickly checked the components and realized the alignments were not as close as I would like. The machine was taken apart and the scraping process began. The first step in the alignment is to check  if the quill and spindle travel parallel to the mast. A test indicator was gripped in the chuck, and the tip was then set on the mast. The chuck needs to be rotated left and right in order to find the highest point of the arc of the mast, then the indicator is zeroed. The quill can then be lowered its full travel and reclamped. Rotating the the chuck left and right will show the high point on the mast in that location. The difference between the readings with the quill extended and retracted is the taper over the length of quill travel. This quill travels 3″ and the difference was .002 over that distance, which means the quill is .0006/inch out of alignment with mast. The head was un-clamped and slid down the mast to a new location and the alignment was rechecked. It showed the same readings. This alignment issue is not an easy fix. Both bores would need to opened up ,bushings installed, then bored to size and position. It would not be a practical to attempt this, so the bores will be left alone.

QUILL IN THE UPPER POSITION

QUILL IN THE LOWER POSITION

 

The next alignment concern is the table adaptor. The adaptor will be installed on the mast and using a depth micrometer two readings will be recorded. The difference in the readings will be the taper.

MEASURING THE UPPER LOCATION

THE LOWER MEASUREMENT

There was a difference of .005″ over a distance of  4″. I decided to recheck the findings by reinstalling the head and using the quill with a indicator in the chuck.

TAKING A READING IN THE UP POSITION

TAKING A READING IN THE DOWN POSITION

The indicator was zeroed in the up position, then the quill was lowered and the chuck was rotated left and right to show the high point which turned out to be +.0035″. The quill travel is 3″, which makes the taper the same as the depth mic measurements, approximately .001/1″.

ROCKWELL / BEAVER DRILL PRESS – IV

THE ADAPTOR

The adaptor face (where the table attaches) needs to be scraped parallel to the mast. I decided to use a marker and create lines 1″ apart  as a guide. Starting with the 1st row only, one scraping pass was made. A second pass in the opposite direction was made. It include the 1st and 2nd rows. The third pass was made (in the opposite direction from the last pass), which included rows 1-2-3. Effectively the first row received 3 passes total, the second row had 2 passes, and the third row had only one pass.

LAYOUT LINES

1st PASS

3rd PASS

The adaptor face was scraped flat to the surface plate. When a suitable pattern was achieved, the adaptor was installed on the mast, and checked for parallelism to the mast. Depth mics showed the face was parallel to the mast. The head was installed again, and using an indicator in the chuck, readings were taken. Since the head is not parallel to the mast(.002/3″), an equivalent taper in the same direction should show up on the face of the adaptor. With the quill in the up position, the indicator was set at zero, then extending the quill the indicator showed a + .002 reading over 3″. This proves the adaptor face is parallel to the mast.

 THE TABLE

 The table was installed on the adaptor and roughly leveled. The quill was extended so the indicator touched the table surface. The table lock nut is loosened, allowing the table to be adjusted left and right, in order to obtain a zero reading on the indicator at those locations.

SWEEPING THE TABLE

INDICATING THE 4TH POINT OF THE TABLE

The front and back table readings should not be zero, because of the slight taper that exists between the head and the mast. The indicator shows   -.001 at the front, +.001 at the back and the left and right reading shows .000 over a 3″ diameter swing.

CONCLUSION

The .002″ taper over 3″ from the head to the mast will not be rectified. The clearances between the bores in the head and the mast, as well as the clamping design makes this issue a little tough to correct. In conclusion I should be able to drill a hole through a  3″ high block, and have the hole of center by .002″ over the 3″ length. Considering drill condition, drill wonder, feed rate, material, this accuracy may be questionable, but this is a fun project that can be accomplished with a minimum of scraping and measuring tools. Just have fun with this, that’s the name of the game.

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