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Mini-mill on the way


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#1 havlicek

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 07:38 AM

I looked around and went for the "el-cheapo" choice. Still, at a little over $400 with free shipping, it could do as a (slightly) glorified drill press... as long as the motor doesn't need rewinding after firing it up. Looks like I'll be in de-greasing "heck" in a few days.

opplanet-woodstock-shop-fox-micro-millin
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John Havlicek




#2 The Sawdust Man

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 07:54 AM

Keep us posted on what you think of this unit. I'm thinking of getting one myself.


Robert Manzitti

#3 havlicek

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 08:21 AM

I will Robert.  At 30 lbs or so, and with a similarly small footprint, I'm not expecting too much, but then again, I don't need too much.  My recent experience with the little Grizzly lathe has been very good so far.  Sure these things won't be able to hog heavy cuts in steel, and probably wouldn't even be on the radar of serious machinists, but I think that "going slow and taking light cuts" will (for the most part) get you there.  I've seen mixed reviews on the machine (mostly about the motor having issues), but I take that stuff with a heavy grain of salt, and you never know if people aren't trying to do more than they should.  I came close to getting the Sherline, but it comes disassembled so it basically a "kit", and something like twice the cost.  I don't know that it's significantly more powerful or more rigid, although it may be more "precise".  Add to that, the Shop Fox comes with a DRO which, even if it works fairly well is a nice feature to have.  

I didn't go for the vise or the collet set yet, but ordered a set of clamps from Little Machine Shop.  The vise seems OK, but not all that, and I'm not sure it's even the best option out there in terms of cost or function for the general type stuff I might do.  The collet set looks nice, but before I invest another $80 or so, I want to see what this thing is like.  I'm hoping for "good enough", but allowing for the possibility that I may be asking for a "Return Authorization".  :D


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#4 The Sawdust Man

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 08:43 AM

On a kinda similar note, I found a " membership based community workshop" a couple of miles from my house that looks very interesting. For about $100 per month you have unlimited access to any and all machines and shops. I got interested when I was trying to find a place where I could test out a $20K CNC (woodworking) machine to see if it's something I really could use in my shop. This place has a fairly complete woodshop, metal shop, machine shop, auto shop...and a computer lab, HD sewing and embroidering shop 3D printers, etc. I went to their open house last weekend and was very impressed. Might just have to become a member! www.thevillageworkshop.com


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#5 Don Weaver

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 09:41 AM

Digitals are the way to go!  Makes using the tool soooooo much easier. 

 

Don


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Don Weaver

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#6 olescratch

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 01:22 PM

John, did you take a look at Harbor Freights unit?  For the price, I thought it was a good choice.  Maybe $100.00usd more than what you paid for the Shop Fox, and comes assembled.  But, I'm looking forward to what you do with it.  I did purchase a collet holder, and a set of collets to replace the 3-jaw chuck to increase the accuracy of the unit just a bit.  I've seen quite a few posts stating that the 3-jaw chucks aren't to be trusted for accuracy!


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John Stewart

#7 wbugenis

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 02:02 PM

Magnet insallation parallels  from my Sherline mill.

 

You can never have too many of these:

 

023.JPG

 

021.JPG

 

022.JPG


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William Bugenis

#8 havlicek

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 02:13 PM

 

 

John, did you take a look at Harbor Freights unit?  For the price, I thought it was a good choice.  Maybe $100.00usd more than what you paid for the Shop Fox, and comes assembled. 

 

Hi John,

 

     Sure thing.  Looks like a nice tool, but even though it's a small mill, it's a whole bunch larger and heavier (130 lbs or so, as opposed to 30 lbs) and $700 + shipping as opposed to the Shop Fox' $422 and free shipping.  The Harbor Freight is a whole 'nuther thing.  Honestly, if I was spending that kind of money, I'd have got the Sherline, just because the size factor is also what I was looking for.  Grizzly has a couple of mills in that price range as well, and for all I know they may be the same machine as the Harbor Freight

Proxxon makes a tiny mill as well, but the motor is just silly...basically running at the same 5,000-20,000 RPMs as their hand grinder.  It seems really geared towards people who would be working with plastic and wood.


John Havlicek

#9 Geary Carrier

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 02:25 PM

Hi John,

 

Oh boy the wheels are turning now...

 

 

Thanks,

g


Yes, to be sure, this is it...


#10 Half Fast

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 02:57 PM

John-

 

Now you need an injection molding machine for end bells so you can completely manufacture motors! :)

 

Cheers


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#11 Bill from NH

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 03:22 PM

Bill. the hotter slot car motors use aluminum endbells, so John is all set. :)


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#12 Dave Crevie

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 04:21 PM

For those thinking of going this same way, two things to check. First, does it have Timken tapered roller

bearings on the spindle/quill? Too much wander due to play in ball bearings. And second, are the cross

slides nice and tight. Loose ways allow too much chatter.

 

The Sherline would be my choice. I have used them, and for their size are the best thing out there.



#13 wbugenis

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 04:32 PM

With one of these you can "zero" out  (no measurable runout) any Sherline tool - lathe or mill.

 

https://glockcnc.com...ategory=8597973


William Bugenis

#14 Tim Neja

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 05:38 PM

Oh boy oh boy oh boy!!! A NEW TOY!! Looks cool--have FUN with it!! I love my old Sherline Lathe!  It's all I've needed building 1/12 scale RC and slot cars.  Enjoy! 


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She's real fine, my 409!!!

#15 Samiam

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 11:17 PM

 as long as the motor doesn't need rewinding after firing it up.

Somehow I don't see this as a problem. :) 


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#16 Ramcatlarry

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 12:35 AM

No injection machine need now that 3D printing is in vogue.


Larry D. Kelley, MA
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#17 havlicek

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 07:28 AM

 

 

No injection machine need now that 3D printing is in vogue.

 

 

I don't think (?) 3D printing can (*at least the commonly available ones) produce a piece from a material with the structural qualities and heat-resistance needed to make an end bell.  The detail/resolution has gotten better, but I think (and I could sure be wrong) the home-type printers use materials that are only good to about the boiling point of water 212F.  Even the old Mabuchi end bells were fine at that temperature, and dying them in boiling water not only didn't hurt them, it seemed to slightly "rejuvenate" them.

 

Maybe there are commercial 3D scanning/printing services that could produce an end bell that would be as good as a typical plastic end bell today.  Even if so, getting one end bell made up would probably be pretty danged costly!


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#18 Dave Crevie

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 03:19 PM

Nor can a 3-D printer make twenty pieces per shot, 500 shots or more per hour. It is not unusual to mold

simple parts at rates of 10,000 per hour. Even if it took only a minute for a 3-D printer to make a part, it can

not competed economically with injection molding. The great advantage to 3-D printing is that there are no

tooling costs. Very short production runs require a much lower capital investment. Assuming that you already

have the solid model CAD file already done, it may only cost $25 to get an end bell made. Thing is, if you need

end bells for 1000 motors, the cost and slow delivery rate can kill the project.  


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#19 havlicek

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 06:48 AM

True Dave!


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#20 old & gray

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 09:17 AM

I work in the aerospace industry and first used 3D printing about 20 years ago. The advantage to 3D is speed. Once the design is completed in the computer there is a model of the part as a solid. This model can be directly created with a 3D printer. This bypasses the time required to create tooling, and machine instructions to produce the part. The part can be tested for fit and function, then revised and rechecked; all without the investment in tooling.

 

The downsides include the limited number of materials which can be printed and resolution of the printing. I have seen current “home” printers which produce plastic, and paper & resin parts. In my industrial experience I have seen printers which produced parts in stainless steel and nickel alloy. The process of printing is creating “layers” one on top of the other. The result can be a “stair step” surface on any surface which is not horizontal or vertical. These imperfections can be overcome by post printing machining and part orientation for printing.

 

While 3D printing is producing some very interesting possibilities but we are not at the threshold of the Star Trek Replicator technology.


Bob Schlain

#21 Mbloes

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 10:19 AM

Dumb question. Does a mill effectively replace a drill press so you don't really need both?
Mike Bloes

#22 triggerman

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 10:47 AM

Dumb question. Does a mill effectively replace a drill press so you don't really need both?


In this case what John ordered is essentially a drill press with an x-y postioning table. He might get by with VERY LIGHT milling cuts in aluminum and steel. I have the exact same machine that is set-up to drill and tap the 4-40 holes in my Knob Job dials. Once the center is found the tables are locked to eliminate slop.
Dale Ryan

#23 Mbloes

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 11:42 AM

Don't you think the bearings are beefed up though vs a drill press to take the side loads?


Mike Bloes

#24 old & gray

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 12:12 PM

Don't you think the bearings are beefed up though vs a drill press to take the side loads?

 

Generally a drill press has a shaft which travels in the vertical direction. A milling machine will move the motor with a gear drive so that the tool height can be positioned. The fixed motor to collet provides an additional stiffing to resist side loads.  


Bob Schlain

#25 Dave Crevie

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 03:33 PM

As I mentioned earlier, a mill should have tapered roller bearings on the spindle, which can be adjusted to

zero side play. Any side play in the spindle/quill assembly will allow wander of the cutter. This means that

the cut will not be perfectly straight. This won't matter if you are only making cuts with the end of the cutter,

but if you try to make a slot to accept another part, the fit will be affected.

 

3-D printing evolved from RP, rapid prototyping. This is a method to create sample parts so that they can

be fitted with other parts which are included in the complete assembly before final tooling is built. In the

past, sample parts were machined in CNC machining centers, usually in aluminum or hard plastic. Going

back even further, the samples were made by hand in manual lathes and mills, which could take a very

long time. Rapid prototyping in an FDM or powdered media printer cuts that lead time down to hours rather

than weeks. Now that powdered media machines have become so fast, it makes sense to use that method

to make parts when only a few are needed.







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