View Full Version : Newb, and VERY Green

02-04-2009, 07:02 AM
Hey folks, thought I'd give up a quick profile so when I ask stupid stuff, you'll know to either ignore the post or treat me gently. Iíve been lurking about here for some time, and Iíve seen enough good advice and tips to want to get in on the action. Iíve also seen some humor, along with some antagonizing. My kind of place!

Iím a 28 year electrical guy who now sits in management, but my office is right next to the plant machine shop. I have been smitten! I am a garage tinkerer, and will only be making parts for my other hobbies (boating, camping, automobile restoration, woodworking). As far as woodworking being related to metal forming, all my shop equipment is 1950ís vintage, and parts to keep them running are becoming scarce to non existent.

I was given an almost brand new Jet mill/drill from a plant that was closing down. Yeah, I know- mill/drills are for losers (from what I read here and other places), but, thatís what I have for now, and it was free. I have managed to make a few parts with it, and Iíve been able to keep tolerances to an acceptable level, though I must make shallow multiple passes due to lack of power and rigidity. But Iím getting by, and Iím not building space shuttles anyway.

A lathe is next. It would have been first if not for the freebee mill. As Iím not made of money (I am not a wall street CEO), Iíll have to look for a real good deal used or super good deal new. Hard to find in the West Virginia hills.

I thank you all in advance for your help and knowledge, and Iíll try to act like I know a little something before saying or asking something too stupid.


Your Old Dog
02-04-2009, 07:11 AM
Welcome to the board Mark! Nice to see a little new blood in the mix. Like you, I'm another looser with a mill drill but I measure it's effectiveness by how close the smile line gets to my ears :D I've had a lot of fun with it and I don't need a big commercial rig for the kind of horsing around in the shop that I do. I also got into it to make things for my other hobbies .

02-04-2009, 07:45 AM
Ask alot of questions. I think some of the bad rep mill/drills get is from people trying to get them to do something they are not able to do. A more experianced person wouldn't try the task because he would understand the how and why of the task.

Bill Pace
02-04-2009, 08:20 AM
Welcome Mark, I dont know what you would call me, (and several others on here) not a 'newbie' because Ive been doing this hobby for 4-5 yrs, but definitely not a 'pro' either. So youll have understanding in your wading off in this hobby...

Hey, dont knock that mill-drill too badly, like dog says that thing will do some amazin things. If you been lurking long, you may have seen/heard member "Torker" get cranked up on the virtues of one ... and he DOES have some stories of what one can do. Biggest thing on that tool is to make sure everything is really locked down before a cut - quill, column, & tables, and itll do pretty darn good.

02-04-2009, 08:43 AM
Thanks guys. I WILL make the best of what I have cause, well, that's what I have! It really should do most of what I need/ want to do. I just don't horse it, and I always keep the quill length to an absolute minimum, unless I'm drilling. I'm also currently in the process gathering end mills and other tooling for it, as well as installing a coolant mister on it.

I shall from time to time ask questions. It's nice to know that not everyone here is a 30 year professional, though you guys that are hold the big knowledge.

I'll try to extract some of it. ;)

02-04-2009, 08:51 AM
On other forums, they state "The only stupid question is the one you don't ask", on THIS forum, it's the one that someone else asks.

Don't be frightened to ask Mark, just don't be surprised at some of the answers :rolleyes:

Best wishes on your "New" hobby.

Regards Ian.

02-04-2009, 09:02 AM
Welcome Mark,
You will fit right in, we all have varied amounts of experience so that seems never to be a problem.

"I’ll try to act like I know a little something before saying or asking something too stupid."

Don't worry about that, YOD (Your Old Dog) has thousands of post and by his own admission posted a stupid question just this morning :D

YOD, you know I am only kidding :)

02-04-2009, 09:08 AM
welcome to the fourm , ya there alot of guys that dont like mill drills , well i got one and i love it some things you can and cant do on both to which some guys never think of , mine i call it a drill and verticial mill and horazontial mill all in one package , busy bee calls its a mill./drill, but hey the head swings 90 left and 90 right so its a 3 in one to me and works rather nice.. free is always a good thing for sure ,, its a pretty expensive hobby or living if thats what onces doing,, my wife is understanding now when i blow a pile of money even on a simple end mill,, oh well if you dont got the tool for the job you cant get it done ,,
for a lathe they are such a hard beast to choose from my first one was a 7x12 and it was not a good one ,nothing i did to it it just blew up one day , so 200.00 more for a good one so i got a better one eventualy.but budget does dicate alot to what you get as well. i gota busy bee 10x18 and its been serving me well for over 4 years now and i love it... and it was under 1000.00 new in the box on sale ..but you can get anything you want really...

take care and welcome and have fun happy metal munching..

tony ennis
02-04-2009, 09:38 AM
Yeah, I know- mill/drills are for losers (from what I read here and other places),

They're ok if you manage your workflow, it just takes more organization.

but, thatís what I have for now,

I know how that goes

and it was free.

Suddenly you're a GENIUS!

02-04-2009, 09:50 AM
I'm new here too....gotta say I've been treated like I've been here forever,and all have been very helpful...now if can get a handle on posting pics I can jump in....good luck with the new machine

02-04-2009, 11:19 AM
Welcome to the site and always have fun with your tools.

02-04-2009, 02:39 PM
Welcome aboard. I'm in pretty much the same boat as you. Got my lathe and mill to support my other hobbies. Biking, boating, and vehicle repair. And of course fixing things for SWMBO which goes a long way towards taking the pressure off of buying tooling.:D My mill is also a mill/drill square column and as long as I dont push it, it does all I ask of it.

02-04-2009, 04:51 PM
Mark...It sounds like you have a pretty good handle on how things work. You have observed how things go around this forum and will do fine. As YOD pointed out, you can do a lot of good work on a mill drill if you understand it's strong and weak points and adjust your approach accordingly. I understand what you mean about old woodworking equipment. I have a 1956 Craftsman table saw, Dunlop drill press and Dunlop wood lathe that belonged to my dad. I have been making replacement parts as needed for years and they just keep plugging along.

best regards,

02-04-2009, 05:32 PM
welcome Mark. I like newbs. They ask lots if questions I can answer so it makes me feel smart :D. actually the flat part of curve is a lot of fun because everything thrills, discoveries every day, and you don't have search high and low for answers, so enjoy and ask away