Earlier this week I had a little time on my hands so I decided it was time to disassemble and clean my Foredom H.30 handpiece. I have used this handpiece for about 6 years now and it was beginning to get a little gritty and the bearings were starting to get a little rough.
The tail of the H.30 is screwed on fairly tight and needs to be removed. You could do this with a pair of pliers as Foredom shows, but then you risk damaging the assembly which is not a good idea.
I mounted the H.30 on my lathe in a Bison 5c Set-Tru Collet chuck with a 1″ Hardinge collet. This will allow you to grip the tailpiece without damaging it. Next take a piece of bicycle inner tube and slide it on the body of the handpiece, place a webbing style oil filter removal tool over it, and turn the body counter-clockwise while depressing the lathe spindle lock. Mine took quite a bit of force, but came off without much trouble.
Once the tailcap was loose, I removed it from the chuck and screwed it off.
After you take the tailcap off you will see that there is a brass nut holding the whole assembly together. You will need a 7/16″ deep socket to remove this. If you place the chuck key in the chuck this will allow you to lock the spindle in place to allow you to remove the nut.
Once you get the nut loose you can then disassemble the inner workings. To do this you will simply slide out the chuck and spindle assembly from the top and then dump out the washer, two bearings, and aluminum bushing from the bottom. You should end up with the following parts in the order shown in the picture below.
At this stage you can clean everything up. My handpiece had a lot of debris on the chuck, behind it, and under the first bearing. I used Hoppes 9 gun solvent to clean the parts. As you can see there was a lot of gunk hiding in there.
My chuck was getting pretty rough and needed to be cleaned well in order to get it to open and close smoothly again. The way I went about this is to drip CLP (Cleaner, Lubricant, & Preservative) oil down into the jaws and in from the back. To loosen things up, I opened and closed the jaws of the chuck a dozen or so times. Then I then used my compressor with a blow gun and about 100psi of air to blow the oil and gunk out from the back to the front. You want to blow it out from the back so that the debris is forced out the front since this is where it got into the chuck.
After getting everything cleaned up you can reassemble in reverse order. One thing to note, is that Foredom does not recommend oiling the bearings. They say that they are greased for life. While I understand this logic I did use a small amount of oil on mine because they had gotten pretty rough. It is probably getting time to replace the bearings, so this will be a hold over until I can order some replacements.
My thinking is that the oil will help to loosen some of the hardened grease and help extend their life a while longer until I get new bearings. I may not even need to replace them as I have done this before without any problems. However you do this at your own risk.
I hope that is of some help to those of you who have this hand piece and need to service or repair it. If you do not have the tools to properly disassemble the Foredom H.30 handpiece, feel free to contact me and I would be happy to do the work for you for a small fee.
As always if you have questions or appreciate the write up please leave me a comment and like this post.