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Greetings! I am attempting to get back to using my LongMill after some health issues. It has been MONTHS since I have even powered it up. During that time, I designed some projects, and have some commission projects to do.

I have been moving my Y access back and forth and have a problem with it dog tracking at the very front and back of my machine. Thus far, I have done the following:

  1. Adjust the Delrin wheels to have them be snug, not tight.
  2. Made sure the backlash nuts are snug, but not tight.
  3. Cleaned the black junk from the rails.
  4. Made sure everything was tightened appropriately.

Here is a video of what my machine is doing.

Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you!

I was thinking about you a few days ago. I noticed you hadn’t posted in a while, and considering how active you were when you first got your Longmill, I wondered if everything was alright. Health issues can really take the fun out of things sometimes. I hope all is well and I’m glad to see you back.

One side sounds too tight. I would back your backlash nuts out to the same point and then slowly adjust them back in 1/4 turn at a time alternating left and right side until it runs smooth and no play side to side.

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It almost seems as if the right side is hung up, like something on the lead screw. Hard to tell without actually seeing it.

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@Jake Welcome back, Jake.

When you have exhausted all the usual suspects - vwheels, dirt, anti-backlash nuts, check out the bearings. I have one fail last year some time, so it’s not unheard of.

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Hey @Swinly, @ozguzzi and @gwilki . Since I posted that, I went on Sienci website and ordered a pack of new wheels and anti backlash “robots”. Not sure if that is the actual problem or not, but I’ve had my LongMill for well over a year and haven’t changed anything, other than cleaning and adjusting. On a side note, the folks at Sienci ROCK! I had received shipping confirmation within an hour of placing my order. Now that is world class customer service! I did have 2 wheels from my original build. I chose to replace both upper wheels on the right side. So inadvertently, I did what @Swinly recommended, which did make it much better. I can go back and forth on rapid speed without it binding now, which is a huge improvement. I ran out of steam for the evening , so I’ll attempt to carve something tomorrow and see how it goes. May use a piece of plywood instead of the walnut, just in case.

Grant, are you speaking of the lead screw bearings? I would have never thought they would go bad, but I guess they could. I didn’t see them (then again wasn’t looking for them either) on the Sienci website. I’ll have to have a look after I finish this.

I am much better than I was before I had back surgery. Still on the mend, but feel successful being out in the shop messing around. I made it 5 hours today and still had energy to free range the chickens for a couple hours. I bought a drafting chair for the shop, so it is comfortable and sits up. I have been reading the forum here and attending IDC woodcraft online webinars to get back in the swing of things. I do enjoy making things and want to push myself to be better with every project. I currently have 3 badges, a memorial plaque for a friend who died and an encouragement plaque for a friend with cancer. Strange, but when we get older friends get sick and some, unfortunately don’t make it.

Thanks Gentlemen for your time and expertise. You folks are the reason why I bought a LongMill! The support from this group is stellar!


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Glad to hear that you are on the mend. Also glad that you may have solved you problem. It is sad that we loose our friends and relatives, and I have lost many. Good luck, mend, and have fun carving.

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@ozguzzi thanks Bruce! I tend to be in awe every time I do a carve. Leave it unattended? Oh heck no, I have my ear muffs on and am watching it do it’s magic. I am carving things that I never dreamed I would be able to carve. Now I know what I do is very basic, but as I stated above, my goal is to push myself every carve to be a bit better. Learning keeps my old brain young. Having the ability to troubleshoot is a gift from my days as a paramedic. Strange how things so different can be similar.

Enjoy your day sir, and thanks again for your reply!

@Jake I was referring to the lead screw bearing, Jake. These the Sienci parts

I decided to buy fully sealed ones from a local supplier that I use from time to time.

It seems that you have solved the issue without resorting to replacing these. Good stuff.

Have fun - again. :grinning:

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@Jake I’m also thankful to see you back, I went through some health stuff myself but back in the swing of things now, slower but swinging!

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@Bill thanks Bill! I had an amazing late morning and early afternoon out carving 4 of 5 “backs” of my plaques. For some reason I think what goes on the back is almost as important as the front side. I have been carving the back side first for the last few projects. This will sound stupid, but I carve them separately versus doing a 2 sided project. Haven’t quite got my brain around a 2 sided project yet.

I am very glad you are swinging yet slowly. I totally understand that! I have had much success today thus far. Had to pause to eat, but think I will go back and carve the fronts now.

I will post finish pictures when they are done. Thanks again Bill!


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@gwilki Thanks Grant! If I would have seen them, I would have bought some. I’ll hopefully be ordering a rotary kit sometime soon, so I will throw them in the cart. Shipping to the states isn’t inexpensive, so I’ll combine whenever possible. I think those bearings are okay for now, but I am not 100% sure. I broke my own rules of troubleshooting, did numerous things. I don’t know what actually fixed the problem, but it seems to be doing okay now. In a side note, I bought some v fits from IDC Woodcraft. I installed them with the speed and such, and they carve clean and faster than I am used to. I will have to see how long they last, as walnut isn’t very nice to bits.

Enjoy Grant!


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@Jake Without taking anything away from the IDC bits, take a look at the V bits here. They are the only downcut V bits that I have ever seen. They not only cut extremely cleanly, but being downcut, they work very well when using masking film of any kind.


@gwilki thanks Grant! My daughter gave me some film, and to be honest I forgot about trying it! I put a coat of clear water based polyurethane spray on. Then wait for it to dry and then use acrylic paint getting into the grooves as much as possible. While still wet, I wipe off what I can. Once it is dry, I hit it with 220 grit on my random orbital sander to crisp up the lines. Once I’m happy, I blow it off with air, take a tack cloth and put a few coats of water based poly on it. I have been happy with the results, but it is time consuming for sure.

I appreciate the tip though! I’ll have a look at their website.

@Jake I’m guilty of taking this thread WAY off topic.

I’ll end my divergences by saying that your way, Jake, is a very good one. I’ve used it and I’ve used drywall mud, too. For each project, there is a best way. No way is best for all projects.

Have fun.

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