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View Full Version : three in one dilemma resolved!



michaelj
01-24-2002, 08:21 AM
First of all, thanks to everyone who responded to my questions concerning three in one machines in general and Smithy machines in particular. Due to the concensus of opinions, I am not gettin a 3 in 1.This now brings up two more issues:
(1) can I please have some recommendations for a good lathe in the $1200 range. (2)I have a Craftsman 15 1/2 in floor mounted drill press. Can I do some milling on it, and, if so, what do I need to get?

I REALLY appreciate all the good advice. This is a great BBS, especially for a newbie.

old sass
01-24-2002, 09:20 AM
Howdy Mike, Glad we didn't scare you completely away! There was a good discussion yesterday on the "Home Machinist-message index" look for the topic "buying a new lathe". It will answer lots of your questions. I am not able to give you a link, but run a search or go to "Pat's Big List Of Metalwork Links". Email me if you can't find them. Wish the internet had been around when I first started. These guys are great to share their knowledge and experience. Would have saved me much grief. Regards, Tim

old sass
01-24-2002, 09:23 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by old sass:
Howdy Mike, Glad we didn't scare you completely away! There was a good discussion yesterday on the "Home Machinist-message index" look for the topic "buying a new lathe". It will answer lots of your questions. I am not able to give you a link, but run a search or go to "Pat's Big List Of Metalwork Links". Email me if you can't find them. Wish the internet had been around when I first started. These guys are great to share their knowledge and experience. Would have saved me much grief. Regards, Tim</font>
PS...Don't use the drill press as a milling machine, the spindle bearings are not up to the stress. You will be disappointed.


[This message has been edited by old sass (edited 01-24-2002).]

old sass
01-24-2002, 09:25 AM
Opps



[This message has been edited by old sass (edited 01-24-2002).]

SGW
01-24-2002, 07:06 PM
Ditto on the drill press warning. The bearings in a drill press are designed for axial loads only; milling imposes heavy side loading. In addition, just about guaranteed the bearing quality isn't good enough. You'd get chatter all over the place.

You might find a decent used 9" South Bend in that price range; worth looking around. See www.mermac.com (http://www.mermac.com) for some hints on buying used machinery.

rmatel
01-25-2002, 10:25 AM
As a 3 in 1 owner, I disagree with the guys that own "real" mills and I say you will get just about as good service from your drill press as you would have gotten from your 3 in 1. Both require very light cuts. You will require an x-y table to mount on your drill and you will be feeding by hand ( no power feed). However, you will be causing damage to your drill press with the radial pressure.

Tree
01-25-2002, 09:45 PM
Through an ad in the newspaper I found a 9 inch southbend model A with a four and a half foot bed. The guy was a gunsmith and had decided to close up shop. I purchased the lathe and a LARGE crate filled with chucks, tooling, rests, centers etc for $1000. A friend of mine also bought basically the same lathe(shorter bed) with a large assortment of tooling as well. He paid $1200 for his. This was about 2-3 years ago in the Minneapolis area. Considering the amount of accessories that were included I think we were both pretty lucky to get our hands on them. Both were found through newspaper ads but we'd been looking for a while. Hopefully you are not in a big hurry and can afford to give yourself time to get what you want. Good luck!

Thrud
01-26-2002, 04:36 AM
Patience, determination, and being in the right place at the right time can net some great finds. It helps to have money ready at hand for many deals. Going back to get cash can lose the machine when some "bastard" comes buy and buys it under your nose. When you see that "find" of a lifetime - move fast.

I remember a guy that bought a new 500 series Mercedes for $50 from a woman. Her husband had left with their money and his secretary leaving her penniless. He ran out of money in Maui an called her and told her to "sell the car and send the money to him" - so she did... (true story)

Dave

crypto
01-26-2002, 06:43 PM
Glad you decided against the three in one. Since space seems to be of importance to you I would point out that the Clausing Vertical would not take up more room than the 15" Craftsman drill press.

This Clausing is a superb mill for the home machinist. Can perform accurate work, so easy to use. Its small in footprint and sturdy and versatile enough to handle a very wide range of jobs. They are only available as used machines, but there's a lot of them available.

Their simple design (essentially a beefed-up drill press) lends itself to an easy rebuild job if all that one can only find is a rather well-used one.

JCHannum
01-26-2002, 11:55 PM
Ditto on the Rockwell Delta, or versions. The name appeared in a couple of variations.

These mills are also nice in that they can be dismantled to put in hard to reach locations, like my basement.

Tim#1
01-27-2002, 06:58 AM
Michaelj:

I've had a Grizzly 9X20 lathe for about 6 years now (7 if you don't count 1-yr in Saudi Arabia). I like it. I'm posting this note because it's readily available, has an attractive price and is good quality. However, someday, I hope to find a decent (used) Southbend or equal. The Grizzly also has a non-standard headstock spindle thread (M39-4.0). This is a shortcoming if you want to buy a new, more accurate chuck. With all that said and done, I've done a lot on the lathe and have been happy with the results. Good luck with your search.

TIM

Thrud
01-27-2002, 04:00 PM
Tim#1:
If you need another or better chuck, get the chuck you want and an unfinished cast iron backing plate and roll your own - after all, you DO have a lathe - use it to solve the lack of a good chuck! Take your time and do your best on it - the first one is the hardest to do...

Dave

KenS
01-29-2002, 05:03 AM
Right, the tenth try is the charm. But thrud's right (as usual), plates are doable. If you lack the facility for the metric threading salvage a plate from a cheap chuck and redrill it to taste. You can turn it true and even balance it before the fancy chuck goes on.