Maybe contact this guy who has assembled a machine tool archive site:
Just picked up a old used mill from a friends Dad, says he's had it in his house as long as he can remember, said he bought the house in East Los Angeles in the 40's.
Anyways, its heavy, took a back hoe to extract it from the trailer, used a fork lift to put it into the trailer, while on trailer, scales said about 2600 lbs. So I would say it resembles the size of a series 1 BP.
Anyways, its got a tag on it, Says Darnall Machinery, Lost Angeles, Machine Equipment, its written in a way that makes me think it was someone that sold the equipment vs. made it. Google shows no hits.
On the other side, cast into the base maybe 6" wide and 17" tall, it Says "MILL" vertically, with COMMANDER horizontally and diagonally with the C starting lined up under the "M" (MILL) and R lined up under the "L" (MILL).
Under that in a 6" x 6" box is cast with MADE IN USA, SER and a plate with the serial number.
Its using R8-J33 collets, the table is about 36" x 9".
Anyways, searching for mill commander and commander mill just got me some cnc software, but I'm very green to machinery and maybe there is something I should know. It works, and Im happy for the price (move it, I want the shop space for my car), 6 pack of beer + uhaul trailer from Los Angeles to San Diego.
It's missing most of the handles that were threaded into the bolts that lock the gibbs, and could use some new oil/grease and some TLC. The head does have a hand feed lever like a drill press that can be used to raise/lower the spindle a little, but the knee controls have a square column where the X and Y have threaded spindles with set screws to attach them. Its missing the handle for the knee. (They had a crescent wrench on the square shaft). Looks like all the old bolts/attachments are there, some miscellaneous threaded holes in the gibb areas (some looks like used to be zerk fittings) and up near the hand feed lever looks like something is missing that used to thread horizontally into the hand column area maybe a second lock (there is another lock that stops the hand column from going up and down on the front as well, it threads on a shaft to control height) but looking into the hole that runs deep along the head casting, I cant make it out. Its a belt fed head with 5 groove pulleys. Like a bridgeport the head rotates 180 each way.
I'll toss some pictures up later, didn't have time to take any yet.
If you know anything or can point me anywhere, that would be great, love to tune up what I can afford on it, replace some of the little levers that when into the bolt heads, etc, etc.
Did some searches.
Found a number of drilling machines, radial arm drills and such, with the name "Commander Johansson".
Could not find anything about a company by that name.
"Commander Johansson" machine tool - Google Search
Edit: Just found this.
and a bit of trivia on Johansson
a parts manual for what looks to be an older smaller version of the mill
Last edited by Andre' B; 08-16-2011 at 05:17 PM.
Thanks for the searchs so far, looks like this might be a little bit of a journey. I still dont have a spot for it in the shop, but I've powered it up right where it stands, and at least it sounds smooth, time to lube it all up and see how it does, my other mill is a Little Machine Shop Hi-Torque or SX2, this beast should be a big difference. Hell, at least its using R8-J33 and everything I have bought for my sx2 will fit in this one.
Looking forward to more info, thanks for what you have found, from some of the readings, this Johansson was a pretty bright fellow.
I contacted a museum of machinery in Vermont and got this response:
Thanks for the picture of this machine which gave us an idea of what we were looking for, but even with this we were unable to find who was the manufacturer.
It's sort of a coincidence that a CNC mill software bears the same name but we could find no connection to the milling machine.
We did find reference to a company named Mill Commander on this patent for a multi spindle drill, but don't know if there's any connection to the milling machine.
MULTIPLE SPINDLE DRILL GEARING - Google Patents
Another company of the name Commander is found here.
OWWM - Commander Manufacturing Co. - History
Sorry we were unable identify the maker of the subject machine.
American Precision Museum
196 Main Street, PO Box 679
Windsor VT 05089