View Full Version : Just picked up a new Smithy

Brett Bellmore
February 22, 2002, 06:27 PM
And are my arms tired!

No, seriously, anybody have some suggestions for home rigging? This thing weighs a good 900 lbs, and the only thing the user manual has to say is, "Look up a machine tool rigger in the yellow pages". I've thought of hanging block and tackle from the ceiling joists in my garage, to get it up onto the bench, but they'd never stand the strain.

February 22, 2002, 08:20 PM
Five pounds of ground round, plenty of liquid, grill. Invite the strong of back for hamburgers n Smithy hoist party.


February 22, 2002, 09:05 PM
Congratulations on the new machine!

Have you considered renting an engine hoist or something???
Buddies are usually a good standby but feed them after they do the heavy lifting... Maybe check the local gym for some gorillas?

I hope you have the time to give us some detailed experiences with this machine... Sure, there are other machinist sites, but few are directly related to gunsmithing...

What model did you go for? What type of work are you planning to do with it??

February 23, 2002, 10:49 AM
Hope the machine works out for you. As DB mentioned, you may try an equipment rental outfit for an engine hoist or something similar.

Be sure it can handle the weight before you rent it!

Brett Bellmore
February 24, 2002, 08:38 AM
Hm, a Smithy lifting party... 900Lbs, divide it eight ways, (The most you could get around it.) that's only 112 lbs a piece, and I'd just have to hope nobody's hands slipped... I'll think about it. The engine hoist might be safer.

It's their Midas 1239 (http://www.smithy.com/midas1239.htm). Inch and a half spindle bore, 39" between centers.

As for what I plan to do with it, have I mentioned that I compete in Battlebots? Though I do have some firearms related projects in mind, too; First up will be a barrel drilling and rifling machine project (http://www.lautard.com/rmv.htm) I saw once in the Home Machinist. Then? Well, I do have one of Bob Stewart's plan books for the Maadi-Griffin .50 cal, but I thought I might start with a caliber the ranges around here will actually let me shoot.

Yes, I'll definately report back on how it works out.

February 24, 2002, 09:13 AM
Get a rigger to move it in - don't risk the machine, or your friends' bodies.

I'm employed at a manufacturing company that uses metal working tools - from drill presses to CNC machining centers & EDM machines. I've been involved with moving that business 3 times; we are presently looking at our 4th within the next 2 years.

A good rigger is worth the money. They'll know how to lift it, & can nudge a piece of equipment into postion & be gone while you & your buddies are still scratching your heads trying to figure out how to get it out of the truck or off the driveway.

Hey - I'd still order the meat & beer - but have the guys there to help you check it over, or wire it up, move the "stuff" back that you had to shift to get The Smithy in place, etc. But I'd leave moving it in to guys that make a living at it, know how to do it, - & are insured in case of a problem.

Brett Bellmore
February 24, 2002, 10:07 AM
Oh, I don't doubt that a good rigger is worth the money. Problem is, a good rigger is worth the money I don't have anymore because I used it to buy the machine tool... Still, I'll check into what they'd charge; Ten feet across a floor, and then onto a bench, can't be THAT expensive. After spending a couple of hours getting it out of the truck, (Walked it down a ramp with prybars.) I changed my mind about setting it up in the basement. :eek:

February 24, 2002, 10:23 AM
As for what I plan to do with it, have I mentioned that I compete in Battlebots?

I love that show! :) That has to be one of the best shows on TV, I have my TIVO setup to record every session.

February 24, 2002, 11:34 AM
Battlebots = cool.

Rigger hired first choice.

Engine hoist or such with PROPER slinging and rigging second.

Several SOBER buddies third.

Cut your legs off and leave it on the floor very last choice.

Kevinch right if you can afford it.


February 25, 2002, 12:36 AM
Also hoping you have an OLD Smithy for sale. Goodluck either way. Post pics or names of your BOT if you'llbe on the tele. Also email me if you have a small old smithy for sale. -Riss

February 25, 2002, 12:56 AM
A Battlebot with a .50 caliber Maadi-Griffin??? Hmmmm...

Brett Bellmore
February 25, 2002, 01:16 PM
Sorry, Riss, this is my first Smithy. Though I am a professional machinist, so I don't expect much trouble figuring it out. Have you thought of dropping in on their annual scratch and dent sale?

Brett Bellmore
February 25, 2002, 01:54 PM
DeBee, the notion of a battlebot with a .50 cal Maadi-Griffin built in isn't such a stretch; A number of the teams are also working on military robots for the government, though they're mostly for recon and bomb disposal. Robots for actual fighting can't be far behind, though.

February 25, 2002, 04:11 PM
I bought a 4 ton come along 10 feet of cable from Menards, use
it to pull my truck out of ditches, 3/4 ton super cab with a full load of wood, I used small pipes and a come along to move a 700 lb
wood stove into my shop, takes time but works , just put pipes ahead as ya pull, cheap way to go . come along cost under $30.

Brett Bellmore
February 25, 2002, 05:43 PM
Moving it isn't the problem, Zot, it's lifting it. I've got to get it up onto a benchtop, so that I can use it without kneeling. I'll be checking on the cost of a gallows crane rental tommorrow.

February 25, 2002, 07:19 PM
You don't know anyone that tows big rigs? They should be able to lift that puppy up a few feet. :)

February 25, 2002, 07:21 PM
A little redneck engineering.

If it can be lifted at all then once you have moved it near the bench, you can chock it on up. No, I don't know if chock is a real word or right word. Rednecks word's don't have to mean anything, words just fill in for our normal grunts and shrugs as we proceed to crush Billy-Bob and develop multiple hernias :D

Here is what I am thinking. Several 4x4's and some 2x4's with a bottle jack or two. If you can get it high enough to get a jack under it, then you can lift it 4 - 6 inches at a time. I'd use a dog-leg and 4x4 to make the first lift, and lift one side at a time. Remember, "give me a large enough fulcrum and I can move the world." It'll be slow, and you still have to move it onto the bench. Please Please be careful, cause I ain't responsible if it falls on you.

All said, I'd have to let the machine sit till I could afford an insured pro to move it into place.

Best of Luck and Many wishes for your safety if you decide to do this yourself.

February 25, 2002, 08:30 PM
DaHaMac is a rigger and is being bashful I think.
Given a few hundred pounds of fender washers and a small pry bar I could get the job done over time.

February 27, 2002, 11:05 AM
go rent an engine hoist on wheels

February 27, 2002, 10:41 PM
When I put my new 14x40 Wilton lathe in, we just got 6 guys (carpenters) we picked it up and moved it across the shop. Of course we used a farm tractor with fork lift to get it off the truck and just into the shop via the 8 foot door.
The Wilton weighs just shy of 1000 lbs.
If it doesnt have a stand or needs assy. then an engine hoist is the ticket. Done one that way too.


February 27, 2002, 11:17 PM
If you use an engine crane (hoist)....keep the load low untill you have jockeyed the rig around so that it will be a straight push onto the bench....with the castors straight and goin the right way. Then raise it with people at the sides to keep it from swinging.....and push straight in over the bench.

Insurance against tippy hoist problems.

If you stare at it for a while first, should go smooth and right the first try. If you really lucky, you can set it on the bench facin the wrong way and get to do it again.

If there is room under the bench for the hoist legs, can keep the boom quite short (stability). If you have to work with the boom extended......watch the boom weight limits......and maby ballast the rear of the hoist.

Piece of cake.......the second time.


February 28, 2002, 09:12 PM
I lifted mine out of the back of the truck with an engine hoist and then lowered it almost to the ground for the trip across the carport and into the shop. Only when it was next to the bench, did I hoist ip up high enough to put on the bench. Be sure the hoist wheels are lined up right before you hoist it up. My Smithy has holes in the side of the bed for hoisting. I used two biiig bolts and two engine hoisting chains to lift it at four seperate points. The engine hoisting chains are adjustable so you can lift it level. It was easier to do than explain and I did it by myself. The hardest part was getting the hoist to roll over a seam in the concrete. Good luck and keep yer fingers out from under it. Mac.
Mac's Shootin' Irons
Mac's Shootin' Irons (http://www.shootiniron.com)

4 Eyed Six Shooter
March 1, 2002, 10:11 PM
Can you take the milling head off and lift the lathe onto the bench then re-attach the milling head? I bought an 1100 lb. lathe, removed everything I could from it, got 4 great big friends and placed two 2 X 4's under it and they lifted it onto the stand. It was a strain but they got it up there. My rong fu bench mill was lifted by taking the head off and lifting the base and pole onto the stand and then lifting the head onto the pole. Did this with just myself and a friend. If you can break it down it just may not be much of a problem. Good Luck-John K