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Thread: Pillar Drill Mystery

  1. #1
    Supporting Member anthonyget's Avatar
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    Pillar Drill Mystery

    Hi there,
    I recently bought this beautiful drill from an auction where it was described as a Meddings. I could see it wasn't but actually looked like a Fobco. It works very well and is beautifully made. As it turns out it isn't a Fobco either. It is made by a company called JGH as i found out when I cleaned some of the grime. The post is a solid piece of steel, not hollow. Weighs about 120K or about 260lbs
    Tony at Lathes.co.uk has never heard of them and I cannot find any reference online aside from one guy who asked the same question in 2014 and had no joy.
    Surely someone knows something about this machine. It is too good to be just an anonymous company. Any help or advice very welcome.
    With great thanks in advance,
    Pillar Drill Mystery-img_4143.jpgPillar Drill Mystery-img_4142.jpgPillar Drill Mystery-img_4144.jpg

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    That looks like quite a robust unit you’ve acquired. Is that an auto-feed mechanism on the 3rd photo?
    The build and fabrication looks 60-70+years; is that about right?

    One thing I have seen her e in the States in machine trade was where pieces built by a smaller producer for a larger company that wanted a certain machine to complement what they offered but it wasn’t in their wheelhouse to make.
    When confronted with an end of contract or such, the producer would have stock left on hand that was rebranded in such a way as to not cause a legal problems selling leftover stock.
    I know these are shots in the dark wearing a blindfold, but does the sound of ricochets ring anything along the same lines.
    I have had to track down so many defunct machine parts for rebuilds that I get like a dog on a scent when I cross the path.
    My little gray cells are fizzing.

  3. #3
    Supporting Member anthonyget's Avatar
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    Thanks so much techcollect. Yes, it is a beaut. No it isn't an autofeed, the only use I can see for it is to dramatically support the stability of the quill. It can be adjusted in order to offer the correct pressure to the quill pulleys avoiding any runout. very impressive actually.
    I really like your shots in the dark because it does bear many similarities to Fobco drills of the 60's but isn't quite the same. It is just so puzzling that I cant find any information online about a company that made such a high quality machine.

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    Supporting Member NeiljohnUK's Avatar
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    Possibly a rebranded machine, not dissimilar to an Alzmetall bench drill I've seen. Though most of the older machines are now long gone, with engineering shop closures and older pre-PUWER tools being replaced (scrapped) with compliant ones it's unlikely you'll find another.

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    Supporting Member Crusty's Avatar
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    That gearing is likely to drastically reduce your spindle rpms so that the press can be used with a tapping attachment to thread holes. Engage it and see what the lowest rpm rate is and if it's 100 rpm or less that press should do a dandy job of threading holes, and then I highly recommend that you get the necessary bits to power thread holes because it's a very very useful technique to have available in the shop.
    If you can't make it precise make it adjustable.

  6. #6
    Supporting Member anthonyget's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crusty View Post
    That gearing is likely to drastically reduce your spindle rpms so that the press can be used with a tapping attachment to thread holes. Engage it and see what the lowest rpm rate is and if it's 100 rpm or less that press should do a dandy job of threading holes, and then I highly recommend that you get the necessary bits to power thread holes because it's a very very useful technique to have available in the shop.
    Wow, that never occurred to me. Thanks so much Crusty.

  7. #7
    Supporting Member anthonyget's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NeiljohnUK View Post
    Possibly a rebranded machine, not dissimilar to an Alzmetall bench drill I've seen. Though most of the older machines are now long gone, with engineering shop closures and older pre-PUWER tools being replaced (scrapped) with compliant ones it's unlikely you'll find another.
    thanks for taking the time. Appreciate it.

  8. #8
    Supporting Member Crusty's Avatar
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    There could be a planetary gearing system underneath that big gear which is engaged/disengaged with that knob.
    Last edited by Crusty; 10-30-2020 at 10:04 AM.
    If you can't make it precise make it adjustable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by anthonyget View Post
    Thanks so much techcollect. Yes, it is a beaut. No it isn't an autofeed, the only use I can see for it is to dramatically support the stability of the quill. It can be adjusted in order to offer the correct pressure to the quill pulleys avoiding any runout. very impressive actually.
    I really like your shots in the dark because it does bear many similarities to Fobco drills of the 60's but isn't quite the same. It is just so puzzling that I cant find any information online about a company that made such a high quality machine.
    I wouldn't be surprised if it is a back gear setup to run low rpms.
    Does it reverse the spindle if you move the lever forward or backwards?


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