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CKillgore

Help! Is this a mill?

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Hey guys. My uncle acquired this piece of machinery and I'm trying to figure out what exactly it is. It looks like a mill but I'm not sure what that little cutter blade is for. I have never used a mill before and am trying to figure out if it's something I want to try to buy from him. Any help on value and what it is actually for would be great. When he said mill, I was expecting a drill press chuck up there but don't see one.

 

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Horizontal mill uses round cutters like a saw blade.

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It's a small horizontal mill. They are good for slotting operations and facing to name a few. They are "old" technology and aren't as common as they once were.

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Nothing better than seeing the old iron!!

Like previously mentioned, it is a horizontal milling machine and yes they are
"old" technology. With a little elbow grease and tlc that would be a handy little
machine to have around.
The cutters do resemble saw blades but come in all different sizes, shapes and angles.
That machine more than likely has a 7/8" or 1" arbor size for the cutters and they are
still very much readily available from new to used.
A word of caution, they will hurt you, machine tools demand respect and do not have
a conscious !
I have a very large horizontal mill that I operate allmost on a daily basis and that ole gal
and I have a very clear understanding of whos the boss.
Given the design of the machine in your pics I would say it most likely predates WW2.

Keep us updated if you move forward with it.

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You can also use end mills etc in a horizontal mill you just have to mount your work sideways. 

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Looks like an older keyseater mill. Mainly used to cut keyways in shafts, but with some adaptation they can be used as a milling machine.

Does he have any tool holders, or arbors (what the cutter is mounted on)? If not, you can check out suppliers like MSC for additional ones. I have a small horizontal mill that uses #9 Brown & Sharpe taper tooling, it is available, but pricey as it is not that common nowadays. One solution is to ream out the spindle for a more common taper IE: Morse for example. So, it may look attractive now, but unless you can get tooling for it, it will be very limited in its application.

Things to look for; how tight are the ways (slop in the table front to back)this can be adjusted most of the time, slop in the screw (slop side to side)probably not adjustable on a small unit like this, how much run out does the spindle have (how true does it spin), etc. What you want is as little slop in the moveable parts as possible. Too much will give you fits when you try to make something.

A small unit like this can come in handy at times, so give it a good look over.

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