Mill tooling

Discussion on all milling machines vertical & horizontal, including but not limited to Bridgeports, Hardinge, South Bend, Clausing, Van Norman, including imports.

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elewayne
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Aug 29, 2014 4:10 pm
Location: Houston

Mill tooling

Post by elewayne » Wed Mar 25, 2020 6:19 pm

I have my Chinese round column mill almost all cleaned up and reassembled. doing final adjustments to tram the column now.
As for tooling, all I got with the machine was a clamp set, missing a couple parts one 3/8" R8 collet, not a collet holder just a single collet, and one 3/8 inch double ended mill bit. I don't know what it is designed to do. steel or aluminum. steel I think.
So I'm looking at R8 tooling. what do I need to get started?
I have v blocks, set up blocks with the holes, parallels in a couple sizes, not a whole set and various other things for milling. I'm mostly looking at actual cutting tools. chucks, boring tools, bits. whatever?
what are good things to have on hand just to get started. I don't want to over spend, and I don't want to have to place an order for every thing I do.
I do have a big tool supply close to the shop though. they may be a bit pricey though.

John Evans
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by John Evans » Wed Mar 25, 2020 10:37 pm

You really only need to add a 1/4-1/2-5/8- and if you will be doing work with small endmills a 1/8 for collets . collets by 1/16 are really not needed very often as most 1/16 size mills are available with the 1/8 shanks. Drill chuck shanks and boring heads are available in 1/2-5/8-3/4 sizes ,quicker to use those tools in collet rather than also needing to change collets also. With that machine with no power quill feed I don't think you will do much boring. Also keep some endmills reserved for aluminum as once they are used on steel they will be somewhat dulled for good work on shiny "WOOD".
www.chaski.com

Harold_V
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by Harold_V » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:59 am

If it helps any, multiple flutes (more than two) are generally reserved for machining steel, while two flute end mills are preferred for aluminum. That's due, in part, to the limited clearance in the flutes (of end mills with more than two flutes), which are easily overloaded with heavy roughing cuts, often resulting in a broken end mill. Aluminum responds quite nicely to heavy feeds and speeds, unlike steel.

Four flute end mills (when used for aluminum) tend to chip weld due to the limited clearance, and are often black in appearance. That black tends to encourage chip welding. You can help limit that problem by using kerosene or WD-40, brush applied, for lubrication.

Unless an end mill is specifically ground for aluminum (they are usually marked for aluminum), two flute end mills are perfectly acceptable for steel. End mills intended for aluminum will have slightly greater clearance angles, and have polished flutes to help avoid chip welding. While they will still cut steel, they will experience premature failure.

H
Wise people talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something.

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

Re: Mill tooling

Post by pete » Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:13 am

An impossible to properly answer question because it depends mostly on what you plan to do with that mill. There are some general tools that are almost always needed by most though. This might get a bit long.

No.1 and most important, the tool you have between your ears, use it wisely and it will save you a lot of time, money and mistakes. Next would be a good used 1940's - 1980's copy of Machinery's Handbook from Ebay. Buy one in excellent condition, you'll use it for the rest of your life. The older ones are better than brand new for people with manual machines.

These round column mills as mentioned are a bit less rigid than other types. Keeping that in mind will always help in some of your tooling choices. Simply put rigidity helps to resist the forces required to machine metal and helps to keep the cutting tool located as close as possible to where you want it to cut. R8 collets move the tool shank up to and as close as possible to the spindle bearings. An ER 32 collet chuck for example moves the same tool shank at least a couple of inches away from those bearings. That doesn't sound like much, but it has a noticeable effect. Your depth of cuts might have to be reduced a bit with ER collets over the R8's. With everything else being equal R8 collets are about the most rigid way to hold tooling in a home shop type of mill that has that taper. Integral shank end mill holders would maybe be second best, then the various collet types and there chucks after that. Short series end mills are more rigid than standard length or long series. Project type and work piece projections dictate what length of end mill you might need though.

A small set of Noga brand deburring tools. And a good edge finder. Non optional for both imnsho. Buy one or two new but cheap 3" wide paint brushes, cut the brush length to about 2" long with scissors. Those are then your chip and tee slot brushes and you'll use them constantly. Don't ever use you hands or fingers to move chips, if you do you'll soon figure out why I said that. Ad cutting oil for steel and maybe aluminum to the list if you plan on cutting it. WD 40 does work as a cutting fluid for most alloys of aluminum.

Look around on the tool websites, find an off shore set that has both 2 and 4 flute high speed steel Tin coated end mills. Usually they still come in a wooden box so look for that. The end mills will have a gold colored coating on them. Grizzly Tools might still sell the same set, I haven't checked though. Starting out your going to make mistakes in depth of cut,feed rates and rpm. That cheap end mill set will last long enough to get some practice and experience so you don't bugger up too many of the more expensive end mills later. Material specific end mills aren't required while starting out and maybe never in most home shops with manual equipment.And end mills leave imo a dead corpse ugly set of tool marks on larger and wider surfaces where multiple passes are made. If you've got a metal lathe then using it and the mill to machine your own set of fly cutters of various diameters that use left hand lathe turning tools is a good first project. And if the depth of cut is kept at or under .005" they will do a nice job of cleaning up those tool marks. A fly cutter also leaves tool marks, they just look a lot nicer than the end mills leave. Much easier to polish those out on fine work when that's needed. But any type of flycutter is a light finishing tool and no matter what you see elsewhere they can and will do spindle spline and bearing damage over enough time if you start pushing the depths of cut.

A good keyless drill chuck is I think well worth having, I doubt you can get something decent that has low runout and good holding power for much less than $100-$150. Glacern Tools did / maybe still does sell an integral shank R8 keyless for about $150 last time I checked. And if there still as good as what I got from them they really are an excellent buy. I bought all of mine about 8 years ago so I can't say there still that good or that they aren't. Used Ebay for drill chucks are an option, but it's a chance you might buy worn out or already damaged junk. Returns still cost you shipping charges so that at least is wasted money anyway. Adding a decent 1/2"- 5/8ths capacity keyed chuck to the list is sooner or later probably going to be needed.

Maybe a cheap but new full set of parallels will save you a lot of aggravation when the size you need isn't there with what you already have. Depends on your exact project list if it's needed, but even without the powered spindle feeds I'd go as far as saying any mill is only half the machine it could be without a boring head. A bit tough to properly press fit bearings into drilled holes instead of precision bored and sized holes. The off shore boring heads can be made to work ok with some practice, cleaning and fine adjusting. The usual 9 pc braised carbide tipped boring bars most have included are total junk. Dirt cheap soft carbide, incorrect tool angles that are bad enough the tool rubs instead of cuts. Very frustrating for someone starting out. And Youtube has ample evidence all those bars are scrap iron junk.So you'll need some decent boring bars if you buy a boring head of any make. Good mid cost range sets of drills, fractional, numbered and maybe a few of those hardly used letter drills if your working in imperial and tapping. Same middle range cost idea for taps. Cheap big box store taps are almost pointless if you want more than a few holes tapped. No one today seems to make good high carbon taps so I'd stay away from any of those and only buy high speed steel taps. Anything from eastern Europe has always been good that I've bought.

You've already got a very good but too large for your mill vise. Tough to find a more suitable 4" capacity the equal of that Kurt. Buying something like this https://www.mscdirect.com/product/details/00352195 with about a 4" capacity and making sure whatever brand you buy has those side slots for clamping to the table is important if you do chose to buy one. Those grinding or tool maker vises in the link if well made still won't have nearly the same holding power as your Kurt, but they have enough if your a bit careful and they are extremely accurate if you don't buy at the lowest possible price. Any thoughts about future gear cutting, dividing work etc ? That will take at the minimum a horizontal/ vertical rotary table and better to have one with a foot stock, the dividing plates and sector arms. Any mill is the home shop equivalent of a boat. It's a black bottomless money pit in your shops air space that you get to top up with your life savings as you can afford it. And there is no such thing anywhere in the world no matter who owns it that has fully equipped mill. That's pretty much impossible because once you think you have even close to that a different job than usual will turn up. Any new project for you will almost certainly require another tool order of some kind for maybe the first 2-3 years you do this unless you just use it as a fancy drill press.Then there's dozens of other types of cutting tools and shapes, power feeds, dro's, boring and facing heads, specialized measuring equipment yada yada yada.

Maybe a lot easier if you tell us what you want to machine and post a rough drawing and we can tell you the tooling that's going to be needed. The initial cost of any mill that will fit in a home shop is I've finally figured out just about incidental, it's all the tooling to use it or would be nice to have, make things easier, faster, better, more accurate is what really costs the most. Then there's the now fairly expensive metal you need to help dull all those nice expensive cutting tools your going to buy. For some extra personal enjoyment and satisfaction, there's always the added bonus of all too easy and expensive stupid mistakes when you forget to tighten the collet/vise /hold down clamps, scrap the part, throw it across the shop, break/crash the tool, carve / drill nice deep apprentice marks in the vise or table. Doing more than one of those at the same time is an extra point score and would save some valuable shop time. :-)

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SteveM
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by SteveM » Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:13 am

You should post a picture or link for your mill so we know what we are dealing with.

A good milling vise will be the best investment you make. If you can't hold parts and hold them well and straight, nothing else will matter.

Pete recommended a grinding vise, which may be your best option if you have a small table. My Pratt & Whitney table is about 3" wide and 18" long, so I don't have a lot of options. You may have more.

If you can fit it, a 4" Kurt D40 vise may be your best be. They are discontinued, so prices are going up, but they are still less expensive than a 3" D30, which were discontinued years ago.

There are clones out there, but unless you get a reliable review from someone that actually has a clone you are looking at, don't bother with a clone. Glacern makes good vises too, but there are fewer on the used market, so you might end up paying more.

The general consensus is that you don't need the swivel base. I needed one because without it, the 3" Kurt I have won't fit on my mill table because of where the mounting holes are on the vise.

A vise stop will prove useful for when you need to mill more than one of the same part. There are many styles. Some clamp to the jaw, some clamp to the table.
Image

Next, you will need devises for lining up your work.

Get an edge finder. I simple one like this works well for a lot of stuff:
Image

There are some that have a pointed end on the other side, and those are good for lining up the spindle to a punch mark.

If you get different sizes, like 1/2" and 3/8", then it is more likely you will have one the same size as the tool you are using, so you don't have to swap out the collet.
A dial test indicator with a spindle clamp will help you locate the spindle above a hole. If you get one with the dial mounted 90 degrees to the lever, you will be able to see it when you sweep the indicator around:
Image

Machinist jacks are useful for when you have a long part and it's clamped in the vise on one end and the other end is hanging off in space:
Image

A fly cutter set will be handy to flattening a surface:
Image

As you get settled in, and you start looking at additional tooling, here's some other stuff.

A set of angle blocks can be used to set work to precise angles in the vise.
Image

You can get a drill chuck with an R8 arbor on it, but at some point you are going to run into a situation where you can't raise the spindle enough to get it in. Having a chuck with a 1/2" straight shank cut to about an inch long will come in handy.

Keep your eyes out for a rotary table. You may come across one at a reasonable price if you keep looking. Getting one that has dividing plates will allow you to do more than just one with degree markings. One that can sit horizontal or vertical is better.

A slotted angle plate will let you hold work where the reference surface is at 90 degrees to the work surface, such as boring the cylinder on a steam engine where the only machined reference surface is the valve surface.
Image

A tilting vise or plate will give you more flexibility to mill angles.

Shell mill and slitting saw arbors.

Steve

jcfx
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Location: NY

Re: Mill tooling

Post by jcfx » Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:00 pm

I think based on the accoutrements that elewayne has a milling vice is in order along with some measuring tools.
A digital caliper, machinists rulers, maybe a micrometer.
For a milling vise I have a preference for the CNC style vises.
Like this one for example, there are other brands with similar styles too - https://www.glacern.com/photos/GPV-615.jpg
A standard import milling vise - https://www.shars.com/products/workhold ... wivel-base

One thing I want to point out is that machinists jacks should shop made, I've never had any luck with store bought, they're
always too tall for my vise and setups.

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TimTheGrim
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Location: El Paso, TX

Re: Mill tooling

Post by TimTheGrim » Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:03 am

I think I would invest in an R8 shank ER-25 Collet holder and a 16 collet set right off the bat. I’ve been running Bridgeport’s since I was 14 and not until 2 years ago did I realize just how convenient these little collets could be.

With this set you will be able to hold inch as well as metric shank end mills. This allows you to get some very decent quality inexpensive metric end mills from Banggood or Ali Express while still fitting any inch tooling you come across. Also, although it’s nowhere near as convenient as a drill chuck, that set of ER collets will hold drill bits in their respective size ranges too.
Sometimes, while you’re just getting up to speed in a new pastime, those few extra moments it takes to change and properly set the next tool can be important in preventing a mistake or even coming up with a better method.

https://www.banggood.com/R8-ER25-716-Co ... rehouse=CN
https://www.banggood.com/16pcs-ER25-1mm ... rehouse=CN
Illigitimi non Carborundum
'96 Birmingham mill, Enco 13x40 GH and Craftsman 6x18 lathes, Reid 2C surface grinder. Duro Bandsaw and lots of tooling from 30+ years in the machining trades and 15+ years in refinery units. Now retired

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SteveM
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by SteveM » Fri Mar 27, 2020 11:57 am

jcfx wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 3:00 pm
For a milling vise I have a preference for the CNC style vises.
Like this one for example, there are other brands with similar styles too - https://www.glacern.com/photos/GPV-615.jpg
Nice thing with those is that you can mount them on their side, which you can't do with the D series Kurt vise.

Steve

jcfx
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Location: NY

Re: Mill tooling

Post by jcfx » Fri Mar 27, 2020 2:28 pm

Steve, Yes you can mount them on their side with a caveat, most CNC style vises the jaw and the movable jaw mount are usually flush
or slightly proud of the base, shimming or a plate is needed for movement clearance.

Jim

elewayne
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by elewayne » Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:01 pm

Well, thanks again for coming through for me. I love this group. A lot of good advice and ides as here that I will totally consider in my shopping. Some things I knew about some I didn't. I really like that CNC vice ,a very nice unit. but I'm guessing rather expensive.I 'll put up a couple pictures, I'm on my computer and the pics are on my phone. A pain moving them around. But to give you an idea of who I am, I'm not an accountant who retired and decided to take up metal work. I've been a furniture maker for 40 years now and I have a full shop of woodworking tools. About 15years ago I got interested in metal work along with furniture work. I bought a welder and started teaching myself to weld. I have mo dads gas rig as well and a plasma cutter.I bought the welder when I started building a Lotus 7 sports car.And I have also don a good bit of steel parts for furniture. what am I going to do with the mill, I really don't know. I read a thing somewhere, maybe here. A guy said if I got the mill I would fine stuff to use it for.I sure I will. I find uses tor my 1938 South bend 9" lathe all the time, and decided a mill would increase my capabilities.I won"t be building any space shuttle parts but I have built wooden things for NASA before. anyway, thanks again for your help .You guys are great..

Lewayne
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by Lewayne » Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:14 pm

6E527ECF-D292-494C-B5B8-856775BF4CAF.jpeg
The clamp set and the one end mill is what I got with the mill. And one 3/8” collet who’s is in the spindle now. There a shot of the lathe, a scroll saw I’m reworking now and the drill press I’ll start next. It was my dads and needs a motor on it besides a birds up.
6E527ECF-D292-494C-B5B8-856775BF4CAF.jpeg
The chair is one of 5 along with two benches I’m doing for a new hotel in Lubbock Tx. I have to do a paying job occasionally. To support my projects.
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NP317
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Re: Mill tooling

Post by NP317 » Fri Mar 27, 2020 8:23 pm

Your mill is gravitationally challenged! Fine for equatorial regions.
And I'm sure others can see the photos the correct side up...
RussN

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