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John Romano
12-01-2010, 02:03 PM
I am looking to buy a milling machine,I have looked at several suppliers when I found out about this Rong Fu outfit. Checking the Internet I found the name of there sales agents who in turn told me to call the west coast for information. I did just that and talked to someone I could hardly understand.

I have been looking at the RF 31 and am interested in knowing total costs and how it would be shipped. Would they put it where I want it and lift it up on the stand in my garage?

Has anyone out there dealt with this company?
I would appreciate any and all comments Thank You
John

HAP
12-01-2010, 02:16 PM
Someone got a great deal if this sold...
http://www.tools-n-gizmos.com/specs/Mill_Drill_details.html

67chevelle
12-01-2010, 02:25 PM
John,

Rong Fu is the manufacturer of the RF-31, and there are numerous distributors, both on-line and brick-and-morter machine tool dealers that carry their equipment.

Doing a quick check, I see that that piece of equipment is $1300 -$1500 from online dealers.

Here are 2 examples.

http://www.toolsplus1.com/rf31milldrill.htm

http://www.emachinetool.com/new/catalog/vertical.cfm?DestinationCategory=Vertical%20Mill&ProductID=929

I have a local machinery dealer that sells this brand, you may have one near you as well.

Shipping costs will vary depending upon your and the dealers location, whether they are delivering to a business location or residence, etc..

You may be able to talk a delivery driver into placing the crates in your garage, but they won't stick around while you uncrate it to help you place it on the stand.

You can probably find a local rigger/mover that can help you for a fee if you don't have a couple of strong friends to help you place it on the stand.

I have a couple of Rong Fu horizontal/vertical band saws, they both work well.

Mark

Arthur.Marks
12-01-2010, 02:31 PM
Mine came from Enco. Just look at the pictures in the catalog if you have any question. This is the RF-31---even if the manual linked to says differently.

http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INSRIT?PARTPG=INLMKD&PMPXNO=954099&PMAKA=105-1298

Black_Moons
12-01-2010, 02:31 PM
John Romano: Where do you live? That really will help us direct you to a nearby retailer, that at the very least will have cheaper shiping.

lazlo
12-01-2010, 03:20 PM
Rong Fu is a Taiwanese company. The real Taiwanese Rong-Fu 31 (that legions of Chinese RF-31's were copied from) are sold by Enco, MSC, Travers, et al. They're substantially more expensive that the Chinese copies.

I've never seen a real Rong Fu 31 in person (I owned a Chinese Enco RF-31 for several years), but I'm told the Taiwanese versions are really nice.

http://www.rongfu.com/en/products/f02_RF-31.html

$2200 at Enco:

http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=566&PMCTLG=00

Arthur.Marks
12-01-2010, 03:42 PM
My recommendation is to not get too caught up in this. I own a "made in Taiwan" genuine Rong Fu 31. I wouldn't say it is anything awe inspiring ;) It is what it is and it does what it does good enough. Don't get me wrong, I am not trying to knock the mill/drills. I would be at a loss without mine. Just don't go getting the impression that one is the bee's knees and the rest aren't. They all seem pretty equivalent to me. Just a few different details, handles, colors and the like. I will say that I am glad I bought the 31 model with power downfeed. Looking back, it was definitely worth the extra few bucks for that option. My opinion, of course.

dave5605
12-01-2010, 05:17 PM
If you can hold out you will catch ENCO with a 10% off that is on top of a internet sale price (the ENCO RongFU clones are always going on sale) of about 25% off and even free freight.
They run the sale about twice a year.. I got a ENCO RF-45 clone (dovetail column) for about $1600 without stand or DRO a little over a year ago.

The freight company typically takes it to the 'end of their tailgate' unless you pay extra. The rest (including getting it off the truck) is up to you.

x39
12-01-2010, 06:17 PM
I had a Taiwanese Rong-Fu mill many years ago. It was okay until I could afford a Bridgeport. Just be sure not to put it in the sunshine place. ;)

TexasTurnado
12-01-2010, 09:13 PM
I've never seen a real Rong Fu 31 in person (I owned a Chinese Enco RF-31 for several years), but I'm told the Taiwanese versions are really nice.



Yes, you have... :) You just didn't realize it - my Enco RF-31 is Taiwanese and I'll bet it came out of the Rong Fu factory. :D I got it in 1990 or 91, long before the Chinese copies came along.

Pherdie
12-01-2010, 11:45 PM
The mill drill marketed under the Jet label several years ago was also made by Rong-FU. I have no idea if this is still the case.

KIMFAB
12-02-2010, 12:37 AM
I had the Jet version of this many years ago before I got my Lagun.
For the price they are OK but the head on that round post tends to twist on a heavy cut. Light stuff is fine.

metalmagpie
12-02-2010, 12:54 AM
Suggest you look a little harder for the RF-45. Square column - the head doesn't lose register when you change its height.

Paul Alciatore
12-02-2010, 01:13 AM
I was looking at the link to the Enco version for $2136. This is basically the same round column mill that is sold all over for varying prices and probably varying levels of QC and support. Round column mills have one basic drawback; the round column makes it impossible to raise or lower the head in the middle of a job without loosing the position of the tool to the work. This is because the head is free to rotate around the column, ususlly a full 360 degrees. A second drawback is you can not tilt the head for angled cuts or drilling angled holes. This can make some jobs a lot more time consuming.

I know that this kind of mill/drill can be purchased for a lot less, but if you are going to spend this kind of money, you should really consider a dovetail column machine like this:

http://www.grizzly.com/products/9-x-32-Gear-Head-Mill-Drill-with-Stand/G0484

I have one of these and after several years of using a round column mill almost identical to the Enco model in the link, I find the dovetail column machine to be a dream.

As far as Grizzly is concerned, in my opinion, they are one of the best and most reliable machinery dealers in the US. I have visited their Missouri showroom several times and have purchased several machines from them and have been favorably impressed. I have also seen a HF store and there is no comparison.

All the usual disclaimers.

lazlo
12-02-2010, 10:12 AM
Yes, you have... :) You just didn't realize it - my Enco RF-31 is Taiwanese and I'll bet it came out of the Rong Fu factory. :D I got it in 1990 or 91, long before the Chinese copies came along.

John, mine was a Made in Taiwan Enco RF-31 too:

http://s164.photobucket.com/albums/u15/rtgeorge_album/RF-31/

But it's claimed that the authentic Rong Fu's have heavier castings, better materials, etc. Shrug. For the prices they're asking, you're deep into good, used turret mill territory.

lazlo
12-02-2010, 10:15 AM
if you are going to spend this kind of money, you should really consider a dovetail column machine like this:

http://www.grizzly.com/products/9-x-32-Gear-Head-Mill-Drill-with-Stand/G0484

Enco carries the "real' Rong Fu 45 as well. It's "on sale" (with power downfeed and a stand) for $3,400 :eek:

http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INSRIT?PMAKA=328-6257&PMPXNO=25601650&PARTPG=INLMK32

Arthur.Marks
12-02-2010, 01:33 PM
But it's claimed that the authentic Rong Fu's have heavier castings, better materials, etc.

FWIW, here's the weight listing on mine:
http://i771.photobucket.com/albums/xx357/Arrak_Thumrs/Widgets/DSCN3915.jpg

whitis
12-02-2010, 03:59 PM
I have been looking at the RF 31 and am interested in knowing total costs and how it would be shipped. Would they put it where I want it and lift it up on the stand in my garage?


No.

In general, shipping companies will bring it to your loading dock, if you have one ("dock to dock"). They often charge extra (around $65) just to bring the truck to a residential address. You will then just get "curbside delivery", they will push it to the back of a truck and expect you to promptly remove it with a forklift or other means. About 56" off the pavement. Don't even expect a ramp you could use a hand truck with (if you could handle that much weight on an incline). If you are lucky, they will even show up on the day they promised - but don't count on it. For extra $ (perhaps around $65-$90), they will deliver it using a lift gate truck and drop it on the ground for you. "Inside Delivery" costs more, when it is even available; that will get it just inside your door if one guy can do it with a handtruck but doesn't include uncrating or putting it on your bench. "Inside delivery with setup" is available for things like furniture but the specialty companies (bekins/mayflower) that offer that service are not be equipped to move heavy machine tools; they send a couple guys with a hand truck, a ramp equipped truck, and some simple tools. So, these last two are generally not available for machine tools. If you are lucky, the driver of a liftgate truck may go so far as to use a pallet jack to drag the crate into your garage. "Terminal Delivery" allows you to pick it up at the freight depot and avoid the residential and lift gate fees.

You may be able to get them to forklift it onto your trailer or pickup truck at the freight depot, but check first that they can actually do this (since they are primarily set up to load vehicles at loading dock height). This may save you $150 or so and get the machine closer to the ground instead of at chest height and avoid taking the day off work and hoping the freight company shows up on the day they promised.

You can hire professional riggers to pick it up at the freight depot and set it up. $$$.

There are old threads, here and elsewhere, on moving machine tools.

AiR_GuNNeR
12-02-2010, 05:34 PM
+1 on the RF-45, or any of the square column types. It is much more rigid and you can lower and raise the head as mentioned without losing your center. They are gear driven so you can change speeds easier than a mill/drill, but they are noisier. The top of the line square column is the IH mill.
http://www.ihcnc.com/pages/comparison.php

TexasTurnado
12-02-2010, 06:08 PM
John, mine was a Made in Taiwan Enco RF-31 too:

http://s164.photobucket.com/albums/u15/rtgeorge_album/RF-31/

But it's claimed that the authentic Rong Fu's have heavier castings, better materials, etc. Shrug. For the prices they're asking, you're deep into good, used turret mill territory.

Dunno.... but mine has a distintly different label on the belt guard than yours: All that is on it is Enco, model 105-1500 (it has power down feed), a s/n, and "made in Taiwan". My manual says RF30 on the first page, but then so does the one currently available on the Enco site - although they have corrected the typo for the lower bearing in the parts list in that one. And inside that manual is a picture labeled RF31N2F, to further confuse things. :)

Regardless, I have been quite satisfied with mine - the fact it has such low spindle runout, less than .0002 with std metric bearings, makes me think the R8 socket was ground in the bearings.....

BTW, there should be an article published one of these days showing the x and y digital readouts (plus z, as you also have) on mine.

TexasTurnado
12-02-2010, 06:12 PM
+1 on the RF-45, or any of the square column types. It is much more rigid and you can lower and raise the head as mentioned without losing your center. They are gear driven so you can change speeds easier than a mill/drill, but they are noisier. The top of the line square column is the IH mill.
http://www.ihcnc.com/pages/comparison.php

Do you see small patterns is the milled piece from vibrations caused by the gears? And if so, how bad are they? This is always a potential problem with gear driven heads, especially if the gears are not precision made.....

kenrinc
12-02-2010, 06:42 PM
As was mentioned, I'm not sure that a "genuine RongFu" is anything to be proud of, at least from what I've seen. The HF 33686 is the Chinese copy of the RF31 and at times is posted as low as $899. With a 20% discount you basically walkout with it for that price. I've not had any issues with mine and I don't baby it. Disadvantages? Some, but you learn to work around them. I've done nothing but make chips since the day I moved it in.

$.02

Ken-

TexasTurnado
12-02-2010, 06:48 PM
FWIW, here's the weight listing on mine:
http://i771.photobucket.com/albums/xx357/Arrak_Thumrs/Widgets/DSCN3915.jpg

It's been a lot of years, but it seems like mine was 680 with the power downfeed. Enco had a store in Arlington, Tx then, so I did not have it shipped, but picked it up there - so I don't have a shipping receipt to check. If I run across an old catalog, I will look it up....

Your s/n is much larger than mine - it is 183040 - do you think they have sold that many? :D

xlxbhorsepower
11-04-2014, 09:15 PM
I am new to this site and been looking at the Rong Fu RF45 for months, I see you got an ENCO Clone RF45- are you happy with the machine? I am limited to a small shop and don't see myself moving a knee mill around so I am focused on the best Mill Drill I can find.

Worth spending the additional money on a Rong Fu over clone?

Tundra Twin Track
11-04-2014, 10:55 PM
I used aRF-31 which was a Morgan in Canada sold by Acklands 25 yrs. ago worked well except at lower speed high torque demand,a friend had the 45 gearhead machine which I thought was much better.I have upgraded to a 7000 lbs.U-3 Varnamo with all power feeds which works fantastic!

oldtiffie
11-04-2014, 11:17 PM
I have a HF-45 (the hand-powered milling head raise lower) as well as a Sieg X3 and an a SX3.

For heavier work the HF-45 is OK bur I do prefer to use the Sieg's if I can - they are a very good well-made and capable machines.

I am in no hurry - and I don't "hog it" or "hurry (aka "tear-ar$e") - I just take my time and work within the size and machining capacities of the Siegs generally - the HF-45 too.

Paul Alciatore
11-05-2014, 12:04 AM
First, you may want to reread my post above, #14. I am partial to Grizzly as I have have purchased several of their machines for myself and for my former employer. I was never disappointed. They are somewhat large with three showrooms across the US and I suspect they have real quality control. The don't just take what the oriental factories ship. Enco has been around for many years and they are also probably fairly good for importers but I have not purchased machines from them so I can not say for sure.

Grizzly no longer sells the model GO484 that I purchased, but they have similar ones.

http://www.grizzly.com/products/Heavy-Duty-Mill-Drill-with-Stand-and-Power-Feed/G0755

The power feed is a real plus. It makes most jobs a lot easier. Also a power column (head up/down) is a very good feature for a machine like this. This is essentially the same machine that I purchased and is or is based on an RF-45. I would not hesitate to recommend it.

My GO484:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v55/EPAIII/P11Cleaned.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/EPAIII/media/P11Cleaned.jpg.html)

xlxbhorsepower
11-05-2014, 05:26 AM
Thank you for the information on Grizzly and Sieg's- I have looked at some Grizzly models from your recommendation I will go back and take some time to look again- I agree with you 100% that Rong Fu is all positive on the reviews and forums I have searched over the past several months but finding a dealer to talk to about them (other than eBay) is tough. I flew out to California for business and spend 4 hours in the car to personally go see the Baleigh showroom and they moved the conversation to the 31 series model, said I didn't want the 45... I walked away from there more confused.

I really appreciate the insight and help!

Seastar
11-05-2014, 06:48 AM
I have never owned an RF-31 or 45.
I have had one of these for 6 years and it has done everything I have asked of it.
The advantages are the head tilts and it is a true knee machine.
http://www.wttool.com/index/page/product/product_id/14821/product_name/WT+6%22+x+26%22+Knee+Milling+Machine&update_continue_shopping=true
Grizzly has a version of this machine.
No interest in either company.
Bill

J Tiers
11-05-2014, 08:15 AM
Another thread of the walking dead.....

A relative has had an Enco Rong Fu for at least 30 years, and for what it is, it seems OK. He uses it a fair amount, and it is no worse than a Bridgeport type machine, which get their head knocked sideways at least as easily as the round column machines, probably more easily. Note I am NOT suggesting they are equivalent...

Enco, however, as a supplier is unreliable. Good deals, but often sells substitute chinese stuff that LOOKS just like the real thing, but does not function like it. Their "Rong Fu type" mills, assuming they still have those, likely are not from Taiwan, but from china.

For that matter, I would suspect the "real" Rong Fu may come from china now as well..... in part if maybe not in final assembly.

Paul Alciatore
11-05-2014, 12:29 PM
Did you ask about delivery times on the two models? I had to wait almost a year for delivery on my 45 (clone?). They may not have had any stock for the 45. In short, sales tactics to sell what they had on hand. I waited because I wanted the features and price. That may clear up the confusion.

That was several years ago so things may have changed by now.



Thank you for the information on Grizzly and Sieg's- I have looked at some Grizzly models from your recommendation I will go back and take some time to look again- I agree with you 100% that Rong Fu is all positive on the reviews and forums I have searched over the past several months but finding a dealer to talk to about them (other than eBay) is tough. I flew out to California for business and spend 4 hours in the car to personally go see the Baleigh showroom and they moved the conversation to the 31 series model, said I didn't want the 45... I walked away from there more confused.

I really appreciate the insight and help!

A.K. Boomer
11-05-2014, 12:45 PM
Every time a discussion about a Wrong foo get's brought up there always seems to be a bunch of fighting...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzPcMzy4WI8

iMisspell
11-05-2014, 07:05 PM
Do you see small patterns is the milled piece from vibrations caused by the gears? And if so, how bad are they? This is always a potential problem with gear driven heads, especially if the gears are not precision made.....
Ive owned the "new version" from http://charteroakautomation.com (they bought out IH) for close to a year and have done alot with it. Mainly mild steels and aluminum, its loud compared to a Bridgeport (again, its loud :) ), but never seen any "harmonics" or patterns in any finish, period.

Nice little machine as long as you know your buying an "import" and dont expect more then that.

_

olcop
11-06-2014, 07:36 AM
The "RF " in the model # might be a tip off for you-------lol

Seriously though, I owned an RF 31 for several years, and was very happy with the way it performed, I sold it to a friend of mine who was a retired machinist, and I mean a fine one too---he could make that machine sing!! He knows how to work around any features of the mill that produce less than perfect work, he still owns it and equipped it with DRO's,
and he even found a feature on it that I didn't know it had.
I wish I had it back!
In my opinion, the round column is the most serious shortcoming that this machine has, but, if you pay attention to what you are doing,this is only a minor shortcoming---I learned the hard way, loosened the head up to swivel it around to replace a 1/2" end mill, swung it back into place, forgot to retighten the collar and started it up, whereupon it swung around and broke the endmill---spent several minutes cussing my stupidity and things in general, replaced the broken end mill, swung the head back in position, forgot to tighten the collar again, and promptly broke another 1/2" end mill.
Operator error, not really a shortcoming of the machine!
Did I mention that I wish I had it back?
olcop