The screw machine is essential for high volume, metal-threading applications. It varies from a lathe in that the spindle on this apparatus cuts into the material without having to reverse its motion to remove the cutting tool.
While the screw is an ancient invention, the mass production of threaded parts is relatively recent. The first mechanically-cut screws arrived just over 200 years ago when Englishman Henry Maudslay cut a threaded pattern into a piece of lead on his lathe. This was most likely the first machine to have threaded parts. Without threaded parts the equipment can still get the job done, just not as efficiently. In Ancient Egypt uses for these types of machines were needed but the technology had not been invented. Experts believe the first truly elementary types in Ancient Egypt were invented by using multiple operators pulling ropes while one person would guide the part to be machined. As you can imagine, it took several years to expand upon the general idea of machining parts for mass production.
While it took years to get interchangeable uniformity, the process of trial and error eventually made it possible. Trial and error also helped increase the safety of the operators. This development helped accelerate the industrial revolution as machine parts could be replaced faster and machined products could be made more efficiently. Also, operators were not as concerned about their safety as they had been years before. Business owners were extremely thrilled at the idea of having increased production, more efficiency, better safety, and in general lowering overhead costs. Large businesses that are still in existence today were greatly impacted by the new technology and advents during the industrial revolution.
As the screw machine helped make interchangeable parts the foundation of a mass production society, the use of it showed more and more wear over decades of use. But for equipment that cut hundreds of millions of threaded patterns over the span of several decades, used screw machines tend to hold up quite well as long as they are well-maintained.
Friction and wear are the enemies of moving parts but well-maintained equipment can run for decades. That's why it's important to look at the reputation of the maker, to see how well they have held up.
This apparatus helped the American auto manufacturing business flourish. In an online answers article, Wood credits the Spencer automatic screw machine as the forerunner of modern American equipment.
When you stop and think about the number of everyday items that are fastened together with nuts and bolts, then you see how immense the use is in manufacturing. But the countless variations of nuts and bolts that hold everything from engines to automobile frames to helicopter rotors to shafts are just part of the manufacturing story.
They also make rivets, washers, gears, pulleys, rollers and push rods along with countless other specialty-threaded items. They have helped accelerate the expansion of machined parts for every aspect of industrialized society. From transportation to textiles to building materials and much more, these devices exist for all kinds of applications.
Those who are looking for this used piece of equipment, one can usually find solid quality products at reasonable prices at liquidation sales. This is where a manufacturing firm has gone out of business and the equipment has to be sold to pay off the creditors. For US buyers, check for liquidation sales where the exchange rate is most favorable and the cost of shipping is reasonable.
Since many of the used screw machines available have been made in the USA, you should not have to deal with non-English labels. This makes the market prime for excellent deals from all over the world. So when you are in the market for any manufacturing equipment don't hesitate to look for those made in the USA.
Andy West is a writer for Wickman Group which offers a wide selection of machine tools to a global market. Whether you are in the market for automatic lathes or used screw machines , Wickman can supply it. For more information please visit Wickman-Group.com.