So You Just Bought a Mill. Now What?
Following is a list of links that include written instructions and video demonstrations to help you get your mill up and running.
- Vertical Milling Machine Operation
- Aligning a Mill
- Mill Z-Axis Backlash Support Screw Installation
- Assembling the Headstock and Motor Speed Control
- Climb Milling vs. Conventional Milling
For additional, detailed instructions on Sherline tools and accessories, you can visit the following web pages on our site or go to our YouTube Channel.
Sherline milling machines are offered in four models and can be purchased in either inch or metric versions, and each model is made in the USA and feature precision rolled leadscrews and handwheels graduated in thousandths of an inch (.001”) or hundredths of a millimeter (.01 mm). The machines are equipped with a high-torque DC motor with variable speed control. This speed control is internally equipped with a converter that automatically adjusts between inputs of 100 VAC to 240 VAC, 50-60 Hz. without loss of torque. Speed is continuously variable from 70 to 2800 RPM without gear or belt changes. A second pulley position is available for providing additional torque at low RPM.
The main difference between a lathe and a mill is that on a lathe, the work turns and the cutting tool is stationary, while on a mill, the tool turns and the work is stationary. Because of the tremendous number of operations that can be performed on a vertical mill, it is commonly regarded as the most important tool in the modern machine shop…the workhorse of the industry.
Jobs for a Mill
At first glance, a vertical mill looks similar to a drill press, but there are some important differences; such as, a spindle that can take side loads as well as end loads and an accurate method of moving the work in relation to the spindle on all three axes. Sherline milling machines can perform all of the tasks and operations that a large commercial machine can perform. Operations such as fly cutting, precision drilling, and boring are all routine tasks for the Sherline mill. Because the tool turns rather than the work, much larger parts can be worked on in a mill, and these parts need not be round. The work is securely held, thus extremely accurate hole patterns can be drilled or bored. The longer X-axis throw also increases the machine’s versatility over that of the lathe with the vertical milling column attachment. It is an extremely rigid, accurate tool that accomplishes tough machining jobs with ease.
Standard Equipment Included with Every Mill
- Every Sherline mill comes with a DC motor and speed control, a 2.75″ (70 mm) x 13.0″ (330 mm) table with two T-slots, pulleys, drive belt, 3 hex keys, Tommy bars, oilers, lead screw cover and a gib removal tool.
- The 5000-series mills come with two standard 1-5/8″ (41 mm) laser engraved aluminum handwheels, and one 2.5″ (65 mm) handwheel, while the 5500, 5400, 2000, and 5800-series mills come with deluxe adjustable zero handwheels. 5400, 2000 and 5800 mills include a 1/4” drill chuck. 5400 mills also include a #1291 headstock spacer block.
- All Sherline mills include oil reservoirs on the X/Y axes, and the Z-axis to help keep critical parts lubricated. Another new feature is the brass leadscrew cover that keeps chips off the rear of the Y-axis leadscrew.
Complete Ball Screw Mills
Our ball screw mills can be purchased with 12″, 14″, or 18″ bases, and come in CNC-ready or full CNC configurations. You can also retrofit your current CNC mill to a ball screw machine. Low friction in ball screws yields high mechanical efficiency compared to other leadscrew alternatives, and efficiencies can range from 70% to 95%.
Key upgrade parts for these ball screw mills include: Ball leadscrews, High-torque stepper-motor couplings, Ball screw mill saddle (nickel/Teflon plated) for the X/Y-axes, Vertical milling column saddle for ball screws, Column saddle Z-axis ball nut mount for the Z-axis, Linux CNC program disc designed specifically for ball screws.
Directions of Movement
- In addition to the basic three axes of movement, known as the “X”, “Y” and “Z” axes, Sherline mills also offer a headstock that can be tilted to either side to mill angled surfaces.
- The Model 2000 and 5800 mills offer additional directions of movement for those who wish the ultimate in flexibility when it comes to creative setups.