Setting Up

Un-crating and Setting Up MI-1220 XL

Moving the Machine

Moving a machine tool can be dangerous. Improper techniques and methods may injure you and/or damage the machine. To find a professional to move and site your Smithy machine to look in your local Yellow Pages under “Machine Tools, Moving and/or Rigging.”

If there is no such listing or your community does not have a rigging specialist, a local machine shop or machinist may be able to provide a referral.

When you pick up the machine at the shipping terminal, bring a crowbar, tin snips for cutting the metal straps, and a hammer. If there is obvious shipping damage to the crate, you'll be able to inspect the machine before signing for it. Note any damage on the bill of lading (shipping document). Fill out the claims form and notify both Smithy Co. and the shipping terminal about the damage. Failure to notify both parties can complicate and/or invalidate a claims process.

Trucking company terminals usually have forklifts to assist customers. It's most convenient to transport the machines in trucks without canopies and large vans.

The machine is assembled, inspected and ready to go on its stand when you receive it.

It's wrapped in a water and greaseproof cover, strongly braced, and crated. A box of accessories is also in the crate.

The metal bands around the crate are under tension. Wearing eye protection and gloves, cut the metal bands with tin snips. Be careful- the cut edges are sharp. The band secures the crate top to the base.

After removing the straps, lift off the crate top. Tip the crate from the tailstock end up and over the machine. Do not damage the crate; you may need it another time to transport the machine.

Tip the crate from the tailstock end up and over the machine.

Now open the accessories box. Check the items in it against the accessory checklist. After accounting for all parts, you're ready to move your Midas 1220 XL into its work position.

Four men can move the Midas 1220 XL using the four lifting handles. You can reduce the weight so two people can move it by following these instructions:


1. Remove the four hexagon socket-head capscrews at the base of the millhead support column If a screw runs through the belt box into the flange of the support column, remove it too.

Remove the millhead and column from the lathe head.


2. Lock the millhead locking handle

3. Lift the millhead and column off the lathe head. You may have to rock it back and forth while lifting it.


1. Loosen the tailstock locks and pull the tailstock off the end of the bed. The gib and the locking pin will fall out. Be careful not to lose them.

Three-jaw Chuck

  1. Remove the three bolts behind the chuck that hold it to the spindle flange.


The chuck will come off. Place a board between the chuck and ways to protect the ways.


The chuck attaches to the spindle flange with three bolts. The one bolt located on the other side of the spindle does not show.

Put the machine on a strong, rigid table 40” long x 24” wide x 28 – 33” high. We recommend you bolt down the machine using the holes in the base of the bed or using the lifting handles the same way they held the machine to the shipping pallet.

Carefully lift the machines by the handles, move it over the stand, and lower it into position. Do not let any part of your body come between the machine and the stand. Bolt the machine to the stand, using one flat washer and one lock-washer per bolt.

Before permanently anchoring the machine, you may want to level the bed.

The bed is rigid and supports itself, but having a level bed simplifies many setup operations. Use a precision level, both along and across the bed. Shim up any low points with sheet metal or other non-compressible material. After tightening the anchor bolts, check the bed again.


Once it's cleaned, your Smithy is ready for lubricating. Do this carefully and thoroughly before starting the machine. Use pressure oil Can and good quality SAE No. 20 or 30 weight machine oil on the bearings and headstock.

To be thorough and complete, follow this routine:

Oiling the Headstock

1. Open the gearbox door to expose the change gears. Oil the button in the casting behind the D gear. Then put a few drops of oil on the teeth of all the gears.

Grease the zerk on the A gearshaft.

Oil the button behind the D gear.

2. Check the sight glass under the chuck. If necessary, add oil until it is half full. The oil-fill plug is at the back of the headstock above the motor. Be careful not to overfill it. If you have to top it with oil, pour in only an ounce at a time and wait to see the results in the sight glass. Too much oil will make the motor lug and sling oil from behind the chuck and inside the belt box.

Oiling the Ways

1. Run the carriage as far to the left as possible. Put a few drops of oil on the ways. Run the carriage to the extreme right and repeat. You may want to use Way-lube, an oil specially formulated for ways.

Oiling the Carriage

  1. Lubricate the oil buttons in the cross-slide table. There are two buttons on the front of the cross-slide ways.

Oil the buttons (circled) along the cross-feed table and cross slide.

2. Put a few drops of oil on the compound and cross-slide feed screws.

3. Put a few drops of oil on the compound slides.

Oiling the Apron

1. Put oil in the button just behind the cross-slide handwheel.

2. Put oil in the button at the back of the cross-slide.

Oiling the Tailstock

  1. Oil the buttons on top of the tailstock


    Oil the two buttons on the top of the tailstock.

    The Midas 1220 XL comes with all major components assembled, but it is not ready to use right out of the crate. Do not start the motor until you correct the positions of the cross slide and leadscrew handwheels. We reversed these handles at our warehouse to protect them during shipment. A drop or two of oil on the shafts will help the handles slide on. Starting the motor with these handles in their shipping positions will damage the machine's gear, bearings, and handles. You must also install the tailstock handwheel, two drill-press handles, millhead lock handle and millhead height adjustment handle.

    Setting Lathe and Mill Speeds

    Changing belts changes lathe speeds. The lower speeds use the two short belts. There is only one position for the motor pulley to idler pulley belt. It goes on the smallest sheave of the motor pulley (behind the largest sheave, Figure 6.11) and on the largest sheave of the idler pulley. For 160 rpm, set the idler pulley to the lathe spindle pulley belt on the smallest sheave of the idler pulley to the largest sheave of the spindle pulley (position C).

    Move it in one sheave for 250 rpm (position D) and one more for 400 rpm (position E).

    For the higher speeds, remove the two small belts and use the single long belt from the motor pulley to the spindle pulley. For 630 rpm (position F), run the belt from the outside sheave closest to the door) on the motor pulley to the largest sheave on the spindle pulley. Move it in one sheave for 1000 rpm (position G). For 1600 rpm (position H), run it from the largest motor pulley sheave to the smallest spindle pulley sheave.

    Set mill speeds using various combinations of the lathe belts and the belt on top of the millhead. For 125 rpm, place the mill belt in position A and the lathe belts in position C

    For 160 rpm, place the mill belt in position B and the lathe belts in position C, etc.

    Setting Mill/Drill Speeds (RPM)

    Adjusting Belt Tension

    To get maximum performance from your machine, keep the drive belts snug. To adjust the tension on the mill belt, swing the roller to the front and place the belt on the back of the roller. Loosen the nut at the bottom of the roller and slide the roller in its shaft to the desired position. Tighten the nut.

    When you use only the single long belt, the spring at the bottom of the idler-pulley bracket holds the idler pulley so it does not fall onto the motor pulley. To adjust the tension on the spring, loosen the pivot shaft and tighten or loosen the spring as needed.

    Then retighten the shaft.

    Adjust the spring tension on the idler-pulley bracket.

    To tighten the lathe belts, move the tensioner handle above the motor so it points toward the lathe head. Turn the knurled knob clockwise to tighten the belt and counter clockwise to loosen it. If there is not enough adjustment, remove the pivot pin and turn the knob as needed. Then reattach the pin.

    Adjusting the Gibs

    The Midas 1220 XL has straight gibs. Before using the machine, adjust the gibs to compensate for wear and maintain the proper fit between sliding surfaces. Gib adjustment affects cutting tool rigidity and the machine's ability to make accurate cuts.

    As the gibs tighten, the effort it takes to turn the handwheels increases. Adjust the gibs according to the work you are doing and personal preference. What's important is to adjust them evenly. The tighter the gib, the more accurate it will be. Removing and polishing the gibs also improves the tolerances.

    Before beginning, make sure the ways are clean and well-oiled. You must also understand locks for the compound, cross slide, carriage, and tailstock act directly on the gibs for their locking power. Back these locks off completely.

    Cross-slide gib. Start adjusting the cross-slide gib with the table centered on the carriage. Back off all setscrews and jam nuts. Tighten the two inside setscrews all the way locking up cross-slide movement. Then back off each setscrew one-quarter turn and check the movement. Finally, set the tension on the outer screws to match.

    The effort it takes to move the table should be the same in both directions. If it is not, the gib is not adjusted evenly. If you feel more handwheel resistance when the cross slide is going away from you, the leading edge of the gib is too tight. Back off the setscrew closest to you a little to relieve the tension. If there is more resistance when the table is coming toward you, the leading edge of the gib is too tight, and you should adjust the screw furthest from you. When everything is set, hold the setscrews carefully with the

    Allen key and lock the jam nuts.

    Carriage gib. The carriage has only two gib-adjusting screws, accessed through holes in the front of the apron. Start the adjustments as you did with the cross slide: tighten the screws all the way, then back them off one-quarter turn and test the setting. Handwheel resistance should be even in both directions.

    The big difference between the cross slide and carriage is that the carriage gib travels with the carriage as it moves down the lathe bed. If you have more handwheel resistance when the carriage moves toward the tailstock, the leading edge of the gib is on the right side of the carriage, the same side as the direction you are moving the carriage. If you have more handwheel resistance when the carriage is moving toward the headstock, to left, release the tension a bit on the left-hand gib setscrew. As you work with the adjustments, you'll feel the difference even gib tension makes on the handwheels.

    Compound gib. The compound gib has two adjusting screws and jam nuts.

    For greater tool rigidity, you can adjust the compound gib a bit tighter that the others.

    Push and pull on the cross slide. If there is movement, remove the two bolts that attach the rear screwseat to the cross slide, remove the screwseat and screw the cross slide toward you until the screw comes completely out of the brass nut.

    Adjust the tightening screws on the two-piece crossfeed nut to reduce the backlash between the screw and nut.

    Remove the brass nut and put one or two strips of shim stock in the side of the hole. The fit should be tight. Screw the cross slide back onto the carriage. Adjust the screws in the brass nut to remove any play between the thread in the nut and screw. Reassemble the screw seat onto the cross slide.


    1. Tighten the setscrew on the bottom of the right trestle so the bushing is tight.

    2. If there is still excess backlash, remove the cap nut, hand crank, and key.

    3. Remove the washer, outer dial, spring and inner-dial hub key.

    4. Install as many shim washer as possible between the bearing and dial. Then reassemble.

    Running In

    Though all Smithy machines are tested at the factory and again before shipping from the warehouse, it is wise to put your machine through a break-in run before starting to work.

    After oiling the machine, check the belts to make sure the tension is correct. Do not plug in the machine yet.

    Follow these steps:

    1. Set the lathe to 160 rpm.
    2. Plug the machine into a grounded 30 amp circuit.
    3. Start the motor by pushing in on the green button. To reverse the motor, push the red button to stop it, lift the cover over the rocker switch, and push the rocker switch either up or down to reverse the motor's rotation.
    4. During the run-in, try the controls. Get a feel for your machine.

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