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British Industrial History

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Churchill Machine Tool Co:1935 Review

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Note: This is a sub-section of Churchill Machine Tool Co

Visit of the Iron and Steel Institute to the Iron, Steel and Engineering Industries of Manchester and District

The Churchill Machine Tool Co. Ltd., Manchester.

The Churchill Machine Tool Co. Ltd. was formed in 1906, and except during the earliest years, the Company has been engaged solely on the designing and building of precision grinding machines. To-day the Company's works at Broadheath are the largest in the world for the manufacture of such machines, and although the work is thus specialised, the range built is very large.

Many of the largest precision grinding machines in the world have been built in the Company's works, including machines for all types of roll grinding, plain grinding machines for heavy crankshafts and heavy work. Internal grinders, plain grinders, surface grinders, centreless grinders, splineshaft grinders, and a very wide range of special purpose machines, all form important sections of the Company's products. The majority of the machines are fitted with hydraulic movements and an electric control system giving a very wide range of workhead speeds without the use of gear boxes.

The building of precision grinding machines differs from that of any other machine tool. Invariably grinding is a final operation, and to-day motor car and other industries show an increasing demand for work tolerances of 0•0002" or less. For these reasons precision grinding machines must be built with practically "dead" alignments and a unique and interesting series of inspection checks has been developed by this Company for maintaining the accuracy of their products.

The greatest demand for these machines is made by the motor vehicle industry, but there is hardly an industry to-day that does not use them. Of more direct interest to the iron and steel industry is the application of precision grinding machines to the finishing of rolls for sheet metal industries, as well as for grinding tinning and foil rolls.

A large quantity of bar stock is now finished to very close limits on centreless grinding machines, and vertical spindle surface grinders are used in a large number of industries for grinding faces from the black casting. The great increase in the use of die cast parts has given an opportunity for several new applications of precision grinding.

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