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  1. #1
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    Default Post Drill - Canadian Blower & Forge No.61

    I bought this blacksmith’s drill off an on-line auction site (not flea-bay) in March this year and collected it at Easter.

    Post drill CB&F 61b.jpg Post drill CB&F 61a.jpg As listed by the seller.

    According to various sources, Canadian Blower & Forge Co. Ltd. is the Canadian subsidiary of Buffalo Forge Co., probably set up in Canada to facilitate sales to other Commonwealth countries (or in those days, to the British Empire).

    CB&F post drills look very similar to Buffalo Forge products. Apart from the cast labelling, the most noticeable difference is the flywheel – Buffalo Forge flywheels have five spokes, whereas Canadian Blower & Forge flywheels have just four.

    Canadian Blower & Forge began production in Berlin, Ontario in 1914. In 1916 (during WW1) Berlin was renamed Kitchener. I believe production of post drills ceased in the 1930s. My No.61 has Kitchener Ont. cast into the mainframe, so it dates to after 1916.

    This drill press is incomplete. Missing parts include: feed arm and pawl; crank arm & handle; table; bottom bracket.

    There is a repair to the main casting (well done as the casting seems well aligned). There are cracks in three of the four flywheel spokes; the flywheel shaft is extended; and the table shaft is extra long (hollow steel tube) so I doubt it's original. And I feel sure the colour is not what it was wearing when it left the factory.

    CB&F_1dms.jpg CB&F_1kms.jpg Views showing repair just below the flywheel shaft boss

    The extended flywheel shaft may have had a pulley to allow the drill to be electrically driven. A lack of auto-feed arm and crank handle support this theory.

    Run of feed = 3"; dia. of spindle = 7/8"; crank cog has 46 teeth; spindle cog has 30 teeth; flywheel shaft cog has 22 teeth.

    In order to achieve a working post drill, I've kept an eye out for another No.61 for parts.

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  2. #2
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    Default I found another one !!

    This one I bought in May, as parts to complete my other Canadian Blower & Forge No.61.

    CB&F 61 Alex1mf.jpg CB&F 61 Alex2mf.jpg sellers photos

    It was in Alexandra (in the South Island - or "Mainland" as Seanz says), but I was able to get it delivered to my brother in Dunedin for a reasonable sum. I was finally able to collect it in September. I had to disassemble it and bring it back by bus, as I think the airline would have spat the dummy.

    It’s complete except for the table. However the main casting is broken (note the "yoke" in the sellers photos, holding it together).

    61.2 Break Ehm.jpg Ouch! This seems to be a weak point in the No.61

    There’s some paint under the grunge on the spindle gear and the crank gear that (hopefully) is the original colour – a dark grey. I believe Buffalo Forge coloured their post drills black.

    61.2 Spindle Gear Fhm.jpg "original" dark grey paint on the spindle gear

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  3. #3
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    Dec 2007
    Location
    Melbourne
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    Default

    Ummm where is the coupler?? Isn't there meant to be an open hexhead coupler and bearing on the spindle????

    Nasty break but I have proven it can be welded back together.


    Or are you going to combine the two into one complete working version?




    Ummm I can't see the yolk in any of the photos????? and that looks like a huge bolt in the chuck.
    …..Live a Quiet Life & Work with your Hands

  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DSEL74 View Post
    Ummm where is the coupler?? Isn't there meant to be an open hexhead coupler and bearing on the spindle????.
    Hi DSEL. The coupler's there.

    Coupler1mh.jpg coupler showing anti-rotation plate (and the anti-rotation plate from my 2nd No.61)

    I believe the CB&F No.611 has the hex nut coupler. The No.61 design uses a cast coupler, but unlike the Dawn it has a separate plate to prevent rotation. This plate passes through two slots in the coupler and engages the slot in the spindle - eliminating the need for a split washer

    I have both couplers - well sort of - I left the second one at my brother's (it rolled under the bed ). He's going to post it to me (one day ).

    Quote Originally Posted by DSEL74 View Post
    Nasty break but I have proven it can be welded back together.

    Or are you going to combine the two into one complete working version?.
    I don't know anyone I could ask to cast-iron weld the frame back together. I have the skills to braze it together but I doubt my ability to get the alignment right. At this stage I intend to make one post drill out of the two (and a box of spare parts).

    Quote Originally Posted by DSEL74 View Post
    Ummm I can't see the yolk in any of the photos????? and that looks like a huge bolt in the chuck.
    The second drill sure has an ugly hugmungeous bolt in the chuck. It's bent too. I'm not sure whether to try for something authentic for the period (i.e. file a hex head square) or to go for a safer grub screw with allen key. To date I haven't even measured the thread.

    By yoke I assume you mean fork and table? The No.61 doesn't have a fork, but a one piece table and clamp. That's missing from both drills and I'll have to fabricate something (or maybe mount the damn thing over a bench).

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  5. #5
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    Default Differences

    As with the Dawn Dating thread, I’ve noticed some variations between the two Canadian Blower & Forge post drills.

    First: The Chuck

    Chucks16hm.jpg

    The length of the chuck barrel on the first drill is 50mm, while the second is longer at 69mm. Depth of bore (for drill bits) is 46mm on the first, and 50mm on the second.

    Second: Crank Gear

    Crank Cog1hm.jpg Crank Cog2hm.jpg

    The first drill crank gear is “spoked”, having three openings in the casting between the hub and the gears. It is also recessed both sides. The second is solid and recessed one side only.

    Third: Kitchener

    Kitch1ml.jpg Kitch2ml.jpg

    The first post drill has “KITCHENER ONT.” Cast on the right hand side of the main casting. The second has just “KITCHENER” and the lettering is on a slight plinth above the surrounding surface.

    Both have "CAN BLOWER & FORGE" near the top of the main casting (RH side), and "No.61" half way up the casting (both sides).

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  6. #6
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    Nov 2011
    Location
    Newcastle NSW
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DSEL74 View Post
    I have proven it can be welded back together.
    I thought Melbourne Matty welded your one? I'm confused, I'm sure he welded someone's post drill?

    Cheers,

    Camo

  7. #7
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by camoz View Post
    I thought Melbourne Matty welded your one? I'm confused, I'm sure he welded someone's post drill?

    Cheers,

    Camo
    Camo you are correct, Matty very kindly did weld mine back together.
    There fore by having mine repaired I have proven that it can be done and Vann could have his repaired by welding.

    Not sure which bit your confuzzled with? Unless you thought I welded mine? Not on your life, I have no experience with welding other than having seen others do it occasionally!
    …..Live a Quiet Life & Work with your Hands

  8. #8
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    Default

    …..Live a Quiet Life & Work with your Hands

  9. #9
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    Nov 2011
    Location
    Newcastle NSW
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DSEL74 View Post
    Unless you thought I welded mine? Not on your life
    Yes,

    That's where I was confused, as you know we have seen a few post drills lately, so I started to wonder if I was mixing them up. While you were replying I was looking back for your thread, to make sure I hadn’t got things muddled up, and was thinking of another post drill. I think you did a great job recovering that one from the inevitable scrap metal yard, so definitely from me on that.

    Although regarding the subject of "proving it", I would say the “The proof of the pudding is in the eating” and you would have to say Matty had most of that pudding IMO.

    Cheers,

    Camo

  10. #10
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    Default More Variations

    Since my last posting I’ve mostly dismantled the second drill, and cleaned-up and painted a number of parts, including some from the first drill.

    I’d read that Canadian Blower and Forge (unlike Buffalo Forge) castings have pattern or part numbers attached. There are 10 cast iron parts on my drill (neither drill came with a table, but I suppose that would take the tally to 11 or 12 castings) labelled as follows:

    Pattern Part Numbers.xls
    Description Pattern Part No.
    61 #1 61 #2
    Main Frame - -
    Feed Wheel - A2
    Drive Cog A5 A5
    Flywheel Cog A8 A8
    Spindle Cog - -
    Coupler - -
    Foot n.a. -
    Auto-Feed Arm n.a. A29
    Pawl n.a. -
    Flywheel A156 A156
    Table Bracket (Yoke) n.a. n.a.
    As neither drill came with a table I don't know what (if any) numbers are on the yoke/table casting(s).

    Documenting some of the differences:
    As pointed out in the 5th post of this thread, the Drive Cogs are markedly different, although both bear the same “A5” number.

    The two Flywheel Cogs look identical – both even have the same off-centre “boss”, yet there is a subtle difference in the label bearing the “A8” lettering, suggesting either the original label was replaced, or it’s a different pattern.

    FC2HL.jpg FC10HL.jpg FC11ML.jpg
    Similarly, the Feed Wheels are different. The feed wheel on my first drill has no “A2” number label, and the locking screw is located in the boss above the rim, while for the second drill the screw is in the boss below the rim. Note also the poorer quality of the casting of the second wheel (with 'flash' between the spokes).

    FW1HL.jpg

    Colour:
    I took the main cog (which appears to have original paint remaining) into my local paint shop and they matched the colour to Resene Paints Limited Ebony Clay (N34-006-264). Well the test pot, an acrylic, matched perfectly. The can they mixed for me, an oil-based enamel, seems to be a bit bluer. I looked up the Resene website, but don’t see a BS colour conversion.


    Hopefully I can progress this project a little over the holiday period, but with the number of other projects I have on the go, I'm not holding my breath .

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  11. #11
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    Default

    I wonder if the numbers were parts codes for ordering etc rather than pattern numbers. Another thought is it was simply to designate the pattern to the machine than specify the incarnation of the pattern to previous versions. This would explain why the patterns vary but the numbers stay the same.
    …..Live a Quiet Life & Work with your Hands

  12. #12
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DSEL74 View Post
    I wonder if the numbers were parts codes for ordering etc rather than pattern numbers. Another thought is it was simply to designate the pattern to the machine than specify the incarnation of the pattern to previous versions.
    My very limited experience with patterns (Hutt Railway Workshops) suggests that most patterns bore a number that often had little to do with part numbers. But I agree, it's either a pattern number or a part number. And even if the design of the part has morphed, it's still the pattern for the same part, and therefore I guess they would retain the pattern/part number.

    These numbers aren't model specific. I've seen a CanB&F No.611 post drill with "A156" on the flywheel.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vann
    Colour:
    I took the main cog (which appears to have original paint remaining) into my local paint shop and they matched the colour to Resene Paints Limited Ebony Clay (N34-006-264). Well the test pot, an acrylic, matched perfectly. The can they mixed for me, an oil-based enamel, seems to be a bit bluer.
    61ccML.jpg The rear of the crank cog of my 2nd No.61 wearing what I hope is the original factory colour.

    On the right you can easily see a daub of paint where the salesman first attempted to colour-match the paint. Less obvious, on the left, is his second attempt - Resene Ebony Clay. I'd say he got it about right.

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  13. #13
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    Default

    I decided on a location to mount the post drill in my wall-space-poor workshop. Because I don't have a table for it, and because I want to get the thing useable before NEXT Christmas , I've decided to mount it above the extended table for my SCMS.

    I did a quick semi-assembly to decide on a height that would suit me.

    61bML.jpg61eML.jpg temporarily mounted - I think I like the old blue colour better than the "Original" grey

    Then I dissembled the whole thing right down to the basic frame ready for paint stripping.

    Now it looks like this...

    Fr1HL.jpgFr3HL.jpg naked frame (no I don't have a speech impairment!)

    ...which shows the repair to be brazed (not cast iron welded), and rough - a disc grinder has been used to machine back the brass - and iron! .

    Fr10ML.jpg braze repair

    Cheers, Vann.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

  14. #14
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    Not a fan of the two tone mate. I like the bluer color of the two.

    That was some nasty break to the main body
    …..Live a Quiet Life & Work with your Hands

  15. #15
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    Default Dis-assembling the Feed and Spindle

    Quote Originally Posted by Vann View Post
    Then I dissembled the whole thing right down to the basic frame ready for paint stripping.
    But wait !! There was more... I took these photos (and a few more) while pulling the the feed and spindle apart.

    1) To remove the Feed Screw and Spindle assembly, first remove the Feed Wheel. This is usually fixed to the Feed Nut & Sleeve by a square headed Set Screw. Tap the Feed Wheel off gently.

    Ds3HL.jpg Feed Wheel is off revealling the Feed Nut & Sleeve - which extends right through the top lug of the main frame.

    2) Loosen the square headed Set Screw in the Coupler. This releases the Feed Screw, which can now be wound through the Feed Nut & Sleeve and out the top of the post drill (to the left).

    Ds4HL.jpg Feed Screw partly unscrewed

    3) Move the Spindle as far down (right) as it will go. Then drive the Feed Nut & Sleeve down. With the Spindle hard down there is just sufficient clearance to tilt the Feed Nut & Sleeve and remove it.

    Ds7HL.jpg It's a tight fit, but it can just be tilted clear.

    4) Slide the Spindle all the way back up (left). With the Feed Nut now gone, the Coupler Yoke just clears the top of it's guide on the main frame.

    Ds9HL.jpg

    5) Rotate the Coupler and Yoke clear and slide the Yoke off the Coupler. The larger fork on the Yoke engages a groove in the top of the Spindle, retaining the Coupler while allowing the Spindle to spin.

    Ds12HL.jpg I used a large bladed screwdriver to gently lever the Yoke off.

    6) The Coupler can now be slid off revealing the Thrust Bearing.

    Ds16HL.jpg ...one of these things is not like the others... - nine 3/16" balls and one about 1/8"

    The bearing consists of ten ball bearings and three steel discs.
    The bearings are 3/16" diameter (with the one exception).
    One disc has a groove for the balls to run in (presumably the bottom one - I forgot to note during dis-assembly ). This disc is 22.0mm diameter and 2.50mm thick.
    The other (top?) disc is 21.8mm diameter and 2.60mm thick.
    Finally, in the middle, is a smaller disc 11.25mm diameter and 2.55mm thick.

    7) The Spindle can now be slid down (right) and out, allowing the Spindle Cog to be removed. There is a loose Key inside the Spindle Cog.

    Ds21HL.jpg free at last !

    Other models and brands of post drill will no doubt differ a little, but I hope this might be useful for anyone considering an overhaul of their own post drill (and without doubt it will be useful to me when I try to put the thing back together again in a few weeks/months/years ).

    Cheers, Vann.
    Gatherer of rusty planes tools...

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