Restoring a CNC machine! (Vertical Machining Center)

I use this CNC to make my high quality hunting / camping / survival knives:

For the past year or so I’ve been looking for a good way to get some CNC machinery into my shop to help with making knives more efficiently. At around Christmas time I found this 1994 Fadal VMC10 for sale in Ottawa and got an excellent deal on it.

It was in poor condition when I bought it, it had been mistreated and not maintained properly, so over the last 2 months I spent about 130 hours doing remedial maintenance and repairs to the machine.

The work I did included:
1) Stripping the base, column and saddle of the machine to bare metal and repainting them
2) Removing rust and contaminants from all the motion hardware
3) Replacing the Y axis grease system
4) Purging and testing all remaining grease systems
5) Re-tapping the power transformer for the correct voltage
6) Replacing the pendant power indicator
7) Replacing the spindle motor fan and filter
8) Re-finishing and repairing all the way covers
9) Installing a new Z axis way cover
10) Cleaning dried coolant and chips off the whole machine
11) Installing all new stainless fasteners
12) Repairing a busted end cap on the X axis linear rails

As well as a lot more! I had a lot of fun during this whole process. This is a pretty awesome piece of machinery and it’s a lot of fun to pull something like this apart and see how it ticks!

A machining center is basically a large milling machine that also has the capability to change tools automatically. They’re incredibly productive machines when used correctly and I plan to use this one to help make nearly all the parts for my knives!

If you guys have any questions I’m always happy to answer them in the comments! Thanks for watching!



Scroll to Top