Friday 12 June 2009
Anthony Bailey is much taken with this traditional spindle moulder
Getting reacquainted with a Sedgwick machine for the first time in ages brings fond recall of its two-tone blue livery and its square and very solid build, so nothing has changed there then. Sedgwick gear is very firmly rooted in the good old British past where simple well-built machinery was prevalent, but does it meet 21st-century expectations?
The pressed-steel casing is very rigid with four extended bolt-down foot positions. The cast-steel top is large and accurately ground flat, so no surprises so far. The cutterblock housing is a big heavy casting onto which all the other bits and pieces are bolted. There are alternative bolt holes for fixing it down and likewise the fence facings can be fitted in two different positions although only one of them makes sense on this machine. All in all, then, it is well laid out and the build quality inspires confidence.
SwitchgearThe switchgear is substantial and comprehensive, and is mounted on the side of the casing. It incorporates an isolator, on and off buttons, emergency stop button, electric brake release for adjusting the cutterblock while automatically isolating the machine and, lastly, a covered socket to take a powerfeed for which, incidentally, the cast-iron top is not drilled as standard.
Added to this switch spec is a flat red paddle switch at the bottom front of the casing which triggers the DC braking when tapped with a foot; not quite as satisfying as the cast-iron drum brake on an old Wilson FV with the pungent smell of hot brake material when depressed, but probably more effective.