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View Full Version : Source of Magnetic Chuck in Los Angeles?



PeteF
02-22-2011, 06:45 PM
G'day Guys, I have a quick trip up to Los Angeles, but will only be in town Thursday and leave again Friday night. At the moment I need to buy myself a 6 x 12" magnetic chuck and was going to get it from CDCO (item #27205), but I haven't heard back from Frank, and now doubt he'd be able to get it to the hotel where I stay in Newport Beach in time for my departure. They're quite expensive here in Australia, and I thought the CDCO version would suit my needs perfectly (it's a fine pole version too). I wonder if there are any other stores in the Los Angeles basin area people may be able to suggest as carrying this type of product? Since it will be ground once fitted I see no point in getting an expensive chuck, so a similar Chinese version is the type of thing I'm after.

I also travel up to Hong Kong from time to time, so may be able to get one there, but thought I'd first explore the LA possibilities. Two sources I've thought of are of course the ubiquitous Harbor Freight and Little Machine Shop, and neither stock this. To give you a comparison as to why I try to buy this type of thing when I'm away with work, this is what I'd pay here for one
https://www.machineryhouse.com.au/Products?stockCode=C302 Freighting it out is typically so expensive I may as well just buy it locally.

Any other retailers of tooling in LA anyone can suggest? I hire a car so getting around isn't an issue.

Pete

Paul_Chretien
02-22-2011, 07:36 PM
Pete,

I forwarded your message to a few of my club members. www.schsm.org. Kind of short notice but maybe doable.

I also sent your post to Chris Wood at LMS dot com. He may not have your vice in stock, but he has local contacts. Long trip from Pasadena, Ca to Newport Beach, however delivery services are plentiful.

Welcome to Southern California

PeteF
02-22-2011, 07:52 PM
Oh thanks for that Paul, much appreciated. Yes this trip came up at the last minute. I was going to go up to Pasadena anyway as I used to stay up there, pretty much once a week in fact, so know the area well. I've changed jobs so don't go up to LA very often these days (last time 2 years ago IIRC, bit of a change to weekly!), hence why I'm trying to figure this out as best I can before I leave. I was going to call in to LMS, while they're more of a mail order retailer, I have called in there before, they're nice people and can sell "over the counter", especially if I flick them an email letting them know I will drop by. I'll go through their catalogue today and see what I can find. Much of their gear is quite small and can be sent out via a USPS $45 pre-paid box so I try to think of heavier/bulkier things for these occasions (ie the magnetic chuck). I'll also swing past HF at Pasadena and pick up 4 trailer jacks they have on special. It may seem like an odd purchase, but the ones normally used down here are top winding v the side winding of the HF jacks. I want them for moving machines and other heavy items around, and the top winders won't work in that situation.

Pete

Paul_Chretien
02-22-2011, 08:05 PM
Pete,

From LMS----"HIP.com has some magnetic chucks. https://www.hhip.com/web/catalog_view.asp?CatPage=118&Page=Page
Their warehouse is in Chino. CA"

Regards,

PeteF
02-22-2011, 08:21 PM
Wow, that was quick, thanks Paul. It looks like their chuck is $556 though, no cheaper than buying it here (albeit theirs is a fine pole type, definitely desirable but since at the moment I don't have ANY magnetic chuck, it's not essential). I really don't want to pay too much over $200 as that's what I can get one for if I'm patient, so may not be getting a chuck this trip :( Never mind, that company has a big catalogue and I still have 24 hours before I leave to study it :D In your experience do they typically have most things in stock?

Dr Stan
02-22-2011, 08:29 PM
There's one on the LA Craig's List you may want to check out:

http://inlandempire.craigslist.org/tls/2171797012.html

.RC.
02-22-2011, 08:36 PM
I need one too Pete...... hint hint... :)

PeteF
02-22-2011, 08:47 PM
I need one too Pete...... hint hint... :)

Mate as you know I'm having trouble enough just finding ONE :D Besides, you got your camel backs and are now the local Scrape-Meister, what do you want with a magnetic chuck :p

.RC.
02-22-2011, 09:16 PM
can't scrape compressor valves... :P

Oldguy
02-22-2011, 10:49 PM
Try KBC Tools. They have an LA office in Fullerton and list a 6x12 in their catalog at $269 (part# 9-600-612). You'd have to contact them to see if they stock it at that site. Here is their web link: http://www.kbctools.com/usa/main.cfm

Another place to try is TFT Tools in City of Industry. I've bought from them at the Westec show a couple of times. They carry the usual Chinese tools at good prices. They don't show magnetic chucks in their current online catalog, but did have them in the older print catalog I have. Their web site is: http://www.tfttools.com/index.html

Good luck.

Glenn

PeteF
02-22-2011, 11:39 PM
That's great, thank you Glenn! Do you think that vice is semi-reasonable? I need to dash out now for a ride, but will send them an email tonight and/or telephone them tomorrow before I leave and confirm they have it in stock. I've downloaded the catalogues from the above retailers, plus LMS, and can have a browse through them on the flight over and work out what else I'll pick up. Sadly I have neither a bottomless suitcase, nor wallet, so the answer may well be "not much", so I'll see how I go with weight and $$$$ :(

Thanks again to those who took the time help me out on short notice. As mentioned, it's been a while since I've been to LA so quite looking forward to getting back up there.

Pete

Oldguy
02-23-2011, 12:34 AM
Pete -

I've got no idea what the quality is on the chuck from KBC. It is their "value" line, so it's certain to be Chinese (or maybe Indian). I've been buying from KBC for several years and it's always a little bit of a crap shoot since I'm usually looking for cheap. Everything I've bought has done its job, but the fit and finish can be all over the map. For example, they had imported MT adapters listed in a sale catalog and I bought a couple sizes - one's a Bison and is beautiful, the other one is from India and while it's ground nicely where it needs to be, the rest looks like it was finished with a rock.

I'd say that if KBC has the chuck in stock, it would be worth the drive to take a look at it. If nothing else, they almost always have a sale catalog with something that you'll probably need.

Glenn

PeteF
02-23-2011, 02:47 AM
Thanks Glenn, with something like a magnetic vice I figure it can and will be ground in situ, so expect this should be a relatively low risk gamble. The good thing with a physical store is being able to take a look before handing over the cash, but I'm sure this will do the job nicely.

As an aside, I go over to India relatively regularly, and it's interesting to see they actually produce some very good products, quite a lot actually and the quality seems to be very tiered. Goodness knows what happens to the good stuff, I presume it's used domestically by high end institutions etc, because as you say, most of the stuff they export is simply dreadful!

Pete

PeteF
03-02-2011, 08:25 PM
Thanks again for those who gave me a "heads up" on the tooling source in LA. As it turned out, KBC didn't have any of the magnetic chucks in stock when I arrived there. Apparently they're a new product line so the store will get them in once they get their first order. I wasn't going to be there long enough to wait for it to come in.

For the Aussie/Kiwi members here, I spoke to KBC about shipping internationally and they're more than happy to use the USPS $45 pre-paid boxes to freight goods out to us. Doesn't do me any good for my chuck, since it's too heavy for the pre-paid box, but plenty of other "goodies" will surely be finding their way from KBC to me now however. Their site is http://www.kbctools.com/usa/main.cfm and they have just started a new sale.

On the upside I had a last minute change to my trip and flew across to New York. Whilst I've been to LA/SFO literally hundreds of times, it was my first time flying across the continental USA, and first time to New York. Both were a hoot, though I did feel sorry for you guys in the St Louis/Chicago region the other night as you were getting hammered by thunderstorms!!! It sure was a good show from where I was though.

Pete

atty
03-02-2011, 11:20 PM
The question is.......did you finally score a chuck stateside or did you have to leave empty handed with only memories of lightning from an airplane?

PeteF
03-02-2011, 11:57 PM
The question is.......did you finally score a chuck stateside or did you have to leave empty handed with only memories of lightning from an airplane?

No chuck ... still :(

I did leave with fond memories ... and a nasty little rash :o

Only kidding, the only rash was the calluses on my hands from my overloaded bag! I'm allowed 32 kg and was right on the limit. I wanted to pick up some side winding trailer jacks from HF, $25 on sale. It may seem a strange purchase to haul across the world (I had to go to New Zealand on the way home), but most of the ones used here are top winding. I wanted side-winding ones to lift machinery. Unfortunately I need at least 3, and could only fit 2 in my case, even then that took up over 1/2 my weight allowance! However even if I have to spring for the over-priced ones sold here ($120+) at least now I only need to buy one. Other than them, yes I picked up a number of things from KBC. I was just disappointed their grinding wheels are only rated to 3600 rpm as they're quite cheap but too slow for my 4000 rpm grinder. I did get a cup wheel however and will be playing around a little with it to see if I can use it for some tool grinding I have in mind. No Kurt vices or similar made their way into my case, indeed mostly Chinese I could have bought in Hong Kong, however it was mainly things I wanted at this time and the quality adequate. The spin indexer was another thing I'm keen to experiment with. I bought some powder coat colours I didn't have, but my bag was getting a bit heavy so needed to return them and put them on the "next time" list. The falling US$ is generally bad news for most here, but good news for people like me. A few years ago the ratio of Aus$ to US$ was almost 2:1, now it's 1:1 and going the other way by the day! Effectively what that means is that the cost for me to buy products from the US compared to a few years ago is approximately half.

Pete

atty
03-03-2011, 12:05 AM
Well.....that's a real kick in the ass, and I apologize for our supply line. There's got to be a way we can skin this cat. :(

PeteF
03-03-2011, 12:20 AM
Yes there is a way, and that's to send the chuck to a freight consolidator who gets discount freight and passes it on to the customers. However it still goes by air and is therefore always going to be expensive. It basically doubles the cost of the chuck. There would be a heap of stuff I, and MANY others, would buy from the US if we could get relatively easy access to reliable sea freight. There's a definite market out there for an enterprising US company in this field if they're hungry enough for business. Cheap freight out of the US is available. Cheap tooling in the US is available. It's just a question of getting the two together.

So at the moment I'm just sitting tight and hoping something will come up locally on ebay. Alternatively I may get a trip either to the US again, or Hong Kong, where I should also be able to buy one. You say "our supply line", are you from KBC Wayne? Actually they didn't have a number of things in stock I was after, mainly from the sales catalogue, but never mind.

At the end of the day I was happy enough. As I said, I was maxed out weight wise, and a 6 x 12 chuck is 15 kg, so not something I want to drop on my toe. They offered me a catalogue which I needed to decline due to the weight, but requested they send one out so hopefully they will. Something about flicking through paper that reading on a screen just doesn't match. As it was I froze my goolies off in New York just so I didn't have to buy more clothes = less tools :rolleyes: A true tool tragic!

Pete

Edit: BTW the "Tool Ark" aka my Samsonite case, took a hammering, and I'm now plastic welding the battle damage before it's next mission :)

atty
03-03-2011, 12:46 AM
No, Pete, I don't work for KBC. I was speaking generically about our U.S. supply. We seem to be increasingly less able to fill the needs of tooling and look more to the Asian side. Such is life and evolution, I guess. Even so, there has to be a way.

When I was in the Navy, I gravitated to the supply officer position since the idea of scavenging and scrounging for the impossible intrigued me. I turned out to be the "Radar" of the MASH TV series in my unit. I also learned very quickly the politics of "I can get you what you want".

I'll give it some thought. Has to be a way to lick this problem.

PeteF
03-03-2011, 01:18 AM
Ok, well as I say, there's a whole world out here that would be more than happy to buy from an enterprising company. It's hard to feel much sympathy when I hear retailers there saying "times are tough" and I say "well I'll buy from you" ... and yet it seems all too much trouble for them! Tooling in Australia, the UK, and New Zealand for example is WAY more expensive than what you may be accustomed to. That's not to mention the number of US manufacturers who still make tooling. I'd buy a Kurt vice tomorrow for example if I could find a way to get it to me at a reasonable cost!

Unfortunately what tends to happen at the moment is that too many fingers get into the pie, and each takes a big slice off it on the way through. The end result is that by the time products make it onto the shelves here in Australia the price has been inflated way above what it should be. Alternatively the retailers directly import, knowing we as individuals will have a difficult time doing so for heavy equipment, and so they charge accordingly. The mark-ups in retail here are bordering criminal!

wierdscience
03-03-2011, 01:20 AM
FWIW,if you want to pickup an item on a trip MSC is better at far flung logistics.They have more branch offices than anybody else and the ones near large cities stock a lot of product.

I've had them drop ship items to a branch near where I was going to be working for pickup when I got there two states over.A call about 4-5 days in advance and a credit card was all it took.Domestic freight was all it cost extra.

http://www1.mscdirect.com/content/aboutmsc/allstates.html

PeteF
03-03-2011, 01:52 AM
Ok, thanks for that. it looks like their location is relatively convenient too, as I stay down at Newport Beach.

Pete