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Woodward fab bead roller ?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Chevyv8-348, Apr 24, 2012.

  1. Chevyv8-348
    Joined: Dec 31, 2010
    Posts: 32


    Well my wife saw me looking at a different bead rollers and noticed me looking at a harbor freight cheapy when we went to get some tarps one day. I really was planning on buying a nice unit from either mittlers and such but funds have been tight lately. My very sweet wife thought she was doing something nice and got me the china made Woodward bead roller. I don't want to break her heart and send it back so I looked up about every beef up build up of the hf and wf roller and I came across a few mentioning replacing the set screws and bolts. I started disassembling it to start adding some strength to it and found some of the set screws on a new unit already had the tips broken off. Those that have done this did y'all just replace those set screws with better screws or drill and tap them to a different size? Also the shafts going through the blocks with the bushings in them have a sloppy fit. What if anything has anybody done with that issue? Any suggestions short of never using it or sending it back would be greatly appreciated.
  2. i have a woodward fab china roller. probably no better than harbor freights version. i had to open up the throught on mine and and build a tube frame "c" to keep it from flexing so much. it works much better now. mitler bros looks 100% better, but cost more. you get what you pay for. mine works fine now with mods done to it.
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  3. Chevyv8-348
    Joined: Dec 31, 2010
    Posts: 32


    Did you have to swap out your bolts and set screws? I'd hate for these screws to jamb something up if they break easily. I highly agree that it isn't much better than the hf unit but at least it already has zerk fittings for the very loose fitting block supports. That way when all the grease squeezes out the sides you know its greased. At least my wife got it from summit so the zerks only cost I'm sure my bank account she probably used to pay for it an extra $30. over what most folks have paid for they hf units when they got them on sale. At least I can get creative with my scrap angle iron and tubing I got kicking around to strengthen it up.
  4. Chevyv8-348
    Joined: Dec 31, 2010
    Posts: 32


    I need to calm down and stop thinking how much money she spent when money is tight right now as she ment really well.
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  5. brace, and grease it up. it will work just fine in most cases. i put stainless set screw in mine. they need re tightened often. also i welded on a 18" steering wheel on insted of the crank handle to get a little more consistancy when rolling.
  6. felix37
    Joined: Dec 20, 2008
    Posts: 82


    That is one of the best improvements you can make!
  7. Chevyv8-348
    Joined: Dec 31, 2010
    Posts: 32


    Sounds good. I'll start there. Any guess if the dies for these were heat treated at all? Looks like they could use abit of polishing or clean up on them.
  8. 31Vicky with a hemi
    Joined: Nov 11, 2008
    Posts: 15,793

    31Vicky with a hemi

    Yea you do !!! It's not like she took the rent money and took her friends out drinking. She got you something that works well after some mods. Kiss her and tell her thanks for thinking of you and then STFU about it. Do the many times over proven mods and be happy.
  9. xxzzy999
    Joined: Apr 8, 2011
    Posts: 143


    I bought a Woodward BR the other day from Northern Tool (on-line) on sale for $139 with free shipping. It seems to work ok after replacing the zerts and buying a few 7/8" washers and bushings of differing widths to help better stabilize the shafts and dies.

    I haven't welded a stabilizer on it yet... seems to work ok with out it, for now anyway.

    Yetiskustoms idea of using stainless set screws sounds good. I redrilled a few of the holes in the shafts for the set screws... basically repositioned them for a tighter fit and less slop overall. Also, like Yetiskustoms said every set screw, nut and bolt needs to be retightened often.

    p.s. 31Vicki is right on, just kiss you wife and be thankful you have one that's thinking of you.

    Good Luck!
  10. Good info.....I've got one and have the same issues. Not a bad piece overall though.
  11. Chevyv8-348
    Joined: Dec 31, 2010
    Posts: 32


    I kiss my wife everyday especially in the morning just before I leave for work I'll give her little kisses until she starts to smile from thinking how "silly" I am. I took the screws yesterday to a fastener place to look for something stronger and they have just enough set screws and bolts to change them all out. Only prob is they don't have stainless and they don't want to order any of that size again as they don't sell often, but they have grade 8. Looks like it will be less than $6. to buy them. If anybody needs the size of the screws and bolts I can post those when I get home. Went through my scrap pile and dug out some what look like heavy duty shelf brackets that look like they were made from 3/8" wall tubing and I think that will keep the frame from flexing. Found a broken desk chair in the dumpster that has a 18" foot rest ring that I can make a hand wheel out of. Looks like I can start cutting and welding tonight. Assuming no hunnydues when I get home.
  12. Bearing Burner
    Joined: Mar 2, 2009
    Posts: 633

    Bearing Burner
    from W. MA

    I've used mine the way it came. Have stepped up to 1/8 Al by annealing and making several passes. Worked well on 14 ga. al. by simpling annealing
  13. Three Widow's Garage
    Joined: Jan 18, 2010
    Posts: 114

    Three Widow's Garage

    Here are a few pics of the one I modified, For the price I think they are a good deal. I found a gear reduction motor for $20 at the recycle center that got the whole project started. Handwheel was built out of 1/2 emt wrapped around a tire about 30" diameter, good leverage and easier to reach on larger panels. Legs fold in and wheel stores on the side so it takes up less room when not in use. The quick release is the best mod of all it allows the same preasure each time and its quick. as stated by others the set screws are junk, I welded the lower shaft blocks to the frame to eliminate any movement. The end play on the shafts will give you an uneven profie to your beads, after I got everything set where I wanted it I drilled and threaded additional set screws that are threaded through the collars and gears all the way into the shafts. The motor is geared for a shaft speed of about 8 rpm. seems to be slow enough for good control yet the longer runs go fast enough to not get bored. I had most of the parts in the scrap pile, but if I was paying myself for my time it probably woud be cheaper to buy a Mittler Bros or Bailigh.
    hamb 002.jpg
    hamb 004.jpg
    hamb 003.jpg
    hamb 006.jpg
  14. Three Widow's Garage, nice work. I bought Woodward Fab and have used it on light stuff only so far. It work's good for that. I like the way you braced it.
  15. Rustic
    Joined: Sep 24, 2008
    Posts: 36


    I thought about powering my hf bead roller with an air ratchet with a foot pedal control. I think it might make for instant stops, adjustable speed and reversable direction. what do you guys think?
  16. michael037
    Joined: May 26, 2005
    Posts: 320


    I bought a HF unit years ago. Instead of welding the reinforcement to the unit, I bolted 2"x2"x5/16" angle iron to it, and incorporated a bit of a bracket assembly incase I get to power it one day. I had a friend key the shafts and put a keyway in each of the wheels to provide a more positive drive method. Yet to do the wheel trick instead of the handle provided. No pictures though.
  17. Bib Overalls
    Joined: Aug 3, 2001
    Posts: 3,942

    Bib Overalls

    I've never met your wife but I like her. You are a lucky guy.

    I also have the Woodward Fab bead roller. I braced it up and replaced the adjusting screw with a new block and a 3/8" fine thread bolt. About six months ago I bought a stainless steel boat steering wheel from a fellow HAMBer. I took the drive shaft to the local technical training school where a machine shop student cut a taper and key way to fit. He also drilled and tapped for a retaining washer and bolt. At some point I am going to paint it with my signature red.

    Attached Files:

  18. Willy301
    Joined: Nov 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,426


    My wife bought me the woodward fab unit too. Times were tight, but she wanted to get me something for Christmas, and she had heard me talking pipe dreams to a friend.

    There was another guy on here, that added some 3/8 or 1/2 steel, much like the pictures above, he said it sturdied it right up...
  19. Chevyv8-348
    Joined: Dec 31, 2010
    Posts: 32


    My wife is very awesome. She's a real sweetheart. Been working on reinforcing it to make sure it doesn't flex when I'm not working on the house. Three widows your quick release looks pretty cool. It's got the gears in my head thinking how to do a quick release with stuff around the garage or in my scrap pile. Y'all got some cool mods on yours. Neighbor mentioned he may be able to get me a gear motor to power mine but it maybe awhile for that.
  20. timothale
    Joined: Feb 3, 2007
    Posts: 230


    I have the harbor freight , Powered by a 12 HF atv winch, as done by Jim Stabe on Metal meet, gear and chain drive and the winch can be set to freewheel so I can just slowly turn my steering wheel for tight turns. I want to do the quick release, set screws etc. I am having a hard time trying to see exactly how the quick release works. I have a Destaco clamp like shown , just can;t see the detail of the linkage. It looks like a pullmax type toggle
  21. rancid737
    Joined: Feb 22, 2011
    Posts: 219


    what are the dimensions of the mandrels on the woodward fab rollers?
  22. lomonte
    Joined: Oct 7, 2011
    Posts: 142

    from Indep., MO

    In to see what I can learn. You're a lucky cat!
  23. 5150Pontiac
    Joined: Jan 2, 2012
    Posts: 8


    I'll have to post pics of mine when it's done.
  24. ago
    Joined: Oct 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,875

    from pgh. pa.

    Forget the stainless set screws, The black good allen set screws are grade 8 much better than stainless. Stainless screws and bolts are not as strong as grade steel bolts. Unbrako brand black allen bolts are grade 8.

  25. sawzall
    Joined: Jul 15, 2002
    Posts: 4,432


    likewise.. I am using the hf winch motor to power my HF bead roller..

    BEST improvement so far..

    I am getting ready to do ALOT of floor work soon. and will be putting it through its paces... for sure
  26. Bearing Burner
    Joined: Mar 2, 2009
    Posts: 633

    Bearing Burner
    from W. MA

    Have used a Woodward Roller to step 1/8" 3003 Aluminum panels with no problems. We did however anneal the aluminum first. Did not reinforce the roller at all. Needed one person to feed the aluminum and another to turn crank.
  27. I braced and bench mounted mine. I made a 36" wheel, thats offset. I work alone, so this way I can reach it to roll while standing in line with the rolls. If I need the full throat, I can turn the wheel over to offset the other direction. I wouldn't make the wheel any smaller.
  28. Mark Fox
    Joined: Dec 22, 2011
    Posts: 59

    Mark Fox

    Three Widow's Garage. Love your work on your bead roller. Keeping that on file. Thank you.
  29. spiders web
    Joined: Jan 16, 2011
    Posts: 383

    spiders web

    I have one but I can see now mine in its basic configuration is primitive. Honey, I'm going to the garage. Them dam hambers just caused me more work, (in a good way)!!!!!!!!!

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