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Armor Milling machine inspection

Part 1

Here is a vintage horizontal milling machine of the Armor brand. It's a benchtop sized unit manufactured by the Aircraft Machinery Corporation in Burbank California. This particular one is model JM and it's ripe for a rejuvenation. -- Jan./01/2008

Armor milling machine

This is the machine with the parts loosely in position without any bolts. The broom is there for size comparison. It's dirty, has a lot of surface rust and needs a good lubrication but I think it a great and obscure machine overall.

Click the photo for a larger view

The machine as received

This is how I received the machine from the seller. It's disassembled into it's three main components to make transport easier.

Even though this is a relatively small machine it's very heavy since the components are thick iron. This is definitely not some cheaply made item. I estimate the total weight to be about 320 pounds.

The mill's base

Here is the base casting with the work table attached. The table is 16" long and 4" wide.

rack on the base

This is the rear of the base casting. Notice the toothed rack on the back of the table. I don't know what it's for and there is nothing with this machine to indicate it's use.

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Lubrication chart

Here's a view of the lubrication chart. It is on the front of the base just under the Y-axis (forward and back) handwheel. As indicated on the badge this machine is model JM and has the serial number 4182.

I searched for other information online about Armor milling machines and all I could find was information about different models.

The milling machine column

Here is the machine's column assembly. I have not removed the arbor yet but information I've read indicated that this probably has a Brown and Sharpe taper in the spindle.

Here you can see that the column is a hollow casting but the assembly is still about 120 pounds. For size comparison the tape measure is open to 19".

The arbor pulley

Here's the pulley that drives the arbor. There are five grooves but only four speeds since the largest groove is doubled. The countershaft has the smallest groove doubled. A logical guess is so that a duel belt can be used for maximum torque when heavy cuts are needed.

The pulley sizes here in inches are 9 - 8 - 7 - 6.

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Column in place

Here's a look at the column assembly on the base. It's not bolted on it's just standing there thanks to some integrated alignment pins.

spindle head

This is a frontal view of the spindle head. Notice the armor logo of a knight cast in place along with the words "BURBANK CALIF U.S.A. ARMOR".

A good sandblasting should clean this off quite nicely and ready it for new paint.

Continue to part 2.

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