Retrofitting a 1986 Maho MH400E

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02 Jan 2019 20:08 - 10 Jan 2019 16:52 #123353 by RotarySMP
I have a chinese 1t engine hoist. I used it to remove and install the table on my 400E. It doesn't work very well for that job, as the feet are not wide enough to straddle the base casting. It works, as I use a fair length of chain between two T-Nuts, and the table is not that heavy on the 400.

Mark
Last edit: 10 Jan 2019 16:52 by RotarySMP.
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02 Jan 2019 21:27 #123358 by Glemigobles
Thanks Mark, the feet of the crane are my primary concern. Engine hoists are pretty cheap over here at the moment, I can get one online for ca. 150€ that is rated for 2 tons. But it's difficult to eyeball whether the crane will fit where it needs to, and there are a few designs of the base to choose from.

In the meantime, a small update on the retrofit is that DMG will send me the schematics within 2 weeks. I have to figure out how to mount the ATX motherboard from the computer I have in the electric cabinet based on your drawing. Since I cut a lot of acrylic, I thought I might make a mounting plate from that material. The existing rack layout on the Philips computer is really nice, but I don't know if it can be easily replicated with different cards.

Coming up with an idea for a panel is a tough thing for me as well. I'm leaning towards a touch screen that has been recommended on the forum since it's not that expensive and is proven to work on Linux. The rest, though, is a mystery.

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02 Jan 2019 22:41 #123369 by J Green
Mark , And all the others who have contributed to his Maho retrofit :wishing you-all the very best for this New Year.
The Heidenhain scale error - The only thought I have would be to swap just the read head from one axis to another axis. I wonder if the read head from some other series of Heidenhain scales would work?
Have you stuffed the Maho thru the shop door way yet? Wonder if you considered trying air pads to float your mill on air instead of casters?


Lifting equipment -- Have seen ,and have used the so called engine hoist things. So very not impressed with them. Past summer acquired a gantry crane rated for 2000Lbs.and has 10Ft cross beam and it is adjustable height and width with 4 big casters to move it around. Do remember Nick Muller's You Tube video showing him jerking the transmission out of his MH700? and climbing down a step ladder while carting it along. His comment was that cranes are for wimps.
Bryan Block has just made a You Tube video about making 2 gantry cranes

Mark Hope to read more of your retrofitting journey
Bob the Wimp
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04 Jan 2019 10:00 #123458 by Glemigobles
Thanks Bob, I have a buddy who's worked with injection molds all his life and he also suggested welding a gantry crane. Gonna have to ask around to have something made for cheap, I don't own a welder and there are at least two fabricators within 200m from my garage.

Surprisingly, DMG have sent me the schematics already! Also surprisingly, they sent me a paper version instead of the CD for which I'd asked. There's also no invoice in the parcel, so maybe I shouldn't rush to tell them about the mistake :D

Unsurprisingly, the whole thing is in German, so... Google translate, hier komme ich!

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04 Jan 2019 10:08 #123459 by RotarySMP
Hi Bob, good to hear from you. All the best for the new years.

I still haven't done the exhaustive test to confirm the y axis drift. The pain with replacing an axis encoder, apart from the $$, is trying to get the cable connector down the conduit.

So far I have been procrastinating on designing the mill dolly. Air cushions wont work, as there is a height difference of a couple of cm (ramp) at the door way, and then the floor in the machine shop is also not really flat and covered with the crappiest tiling job since Hundertwasser.

I also prefer to lift from above. On the first post of this thread you can see the gantry I made for lifting the Maho off the trailer. Unfortunately the ceiling height of my basement is only 209cm, so overhead equipment is out of the question.

Yesterday, the result of procrastinating on the important stuff was to make the shaping tool holder. I haven't ground the tool bit yet.





Mark
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04 Jan 2019 10:12 #123460 by RotarySMP

Glemigobles wrote: Unsurprisingly, the whole thing is in German, so... Google translate, hier komme ich!


There are definitely a couple of German native speakers following this thread, and I can also help you with German. Anything you are not sure of just ask.
Mark

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05 Jan 2019 14:44 #123548 by Glemigobles
Thanks Mark, I might just take you up on that offer!

Good looking shaper there also. Your machine is going to have a lot of extra utility between this and the horizontal overarm attachment! Now just get the original Maho spindle speeder and you're set for life B)

One question, did you buy your Mesa cards from eusurplus or did you import them directly? I think I'll order the cards next week and I was wondering what experience you had with the purchase.

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05 Jan 2019 15:17 #123555 by RotarySMP
I got my mesa card in the states, as I was over there last summer.

Is there really a MAHO spindle speeder or are you just pulling my leg I ground up an engraver bit out of 3mm carbide and tried it yesterday, worked pretty well, but the 4000rpm limits you to a feed of 3mm/min.

Mark

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05 Jan 2019 15:30 #123557 by Mike_Eitel
m5c.
I got several cards from Mesanet and Mesaus direct. Good service and quit fast delivery. Only transportation cost to Switzerland went crazy meanwhile.
So I tried Portugal - > not very fast.
Now I ordered from Austria. Yes 22.12 is end of year but no warning... , Also I gave Wednesday a call no glue when this "in stock" will arrive.
Next order will be probably from us direct again.
Mike

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05 Jan 2019 15:44 #123558 by Glemigobles
Thanks for the info Mike, I was kinda hoping that ordering the cards would be the least troublesome part of the process, looks like I might be in for a surprise!

Mark, I don't know if they actually made it or if they simply resold someone else's products but the speeder is right there in my manual as an option. It was limited to 8000 rpm. I had a new one quoted from a company in Poland for ca. 1500€ (without VAT) that did 12000 rpms.

But since I'm cutting acrylic atm I went with a small 18000 spindle (1kW) with a matching inverter that I just bolt on to the horizontal sipndle face via two aluminum plates. That option cost me ca. 900€ and it was money well spent for what I do. It allows me to cut with the Maho's full speed of 1500 mm/min, which is still pathetic in acrylic but I didn't know I'd be doing this when I bought the machine. The plan was always to make molds.

Anyway, for longer programs or batch production, the smaller spindle is a better option because it doesn't cause problems if you run it all the time. A mechanical spindle speeder will overheat after a couple of hours from what I gather. For continuous work and no extra hassles, the premium options are air-powered or electric spindles that are already mounted in an SK40 tool holder, such as Jaeger or Air Turbine. But those cost almost as much as my machine did.
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