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  • Syil X7? Haas Mini mill?

    The Syil is looking really impressive. Perhaps after the rental cottages are built I'll go buy one. Beats the heck out of buying a sports car for a midlife crisis.

  • #2
    Originally posted by RB211 View Post
    The Syil is looking really impressive. Perhaps after the rental cottages are built I'll go buy one. Beats the heck out of buying a sports car for a midlife crisis.
    That's why I bought my Tormach. Admittedly though, if I had the choice between those 2 mentioned and my tormach for the same price it would be the haas hands down, with the syil 2nd. But price and availability are variables one can't ignore, which is why I bought a tormach. It was relatively cheap, and available close to me. All tooled up ready to go. It's all paid for, and starting to earn it's keep and by the end of the year if things keep going the way they are It will have brought in more than what it cost me maybe double. Lets see a Miata do that lol.

    Now I'm looking to add a lathe.

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    • #3
      I own Syils. I'd buy the Haas.

      I like my Tormach better than my Syils.

      Took me months to fix everything wrong, unfinished, or broken with the Syils fresh out of the crate. Of course they say, "Those are old Syils, give us another chance." What they didn't say was, " let us make it right."

      THat being said after I fixed everything that was wrong I do use those machines every day.

      There is a thread on the Cambam forum you might want to read about the control system one of the users has on there Syil machine that seems a little disturbing with how you have to deal with managing tools greater than the number that fit in the magazine if you have an automatic tool changer.

      https://cambamcnc.com/forum/index.php?topic=9368.0

      Speaking of automatic tool changers I am not a fan of the tormach automatic tool changer.
      *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

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      • #4
        I can get a Syil with 5 axis for what the Haas costs for 3 axis. Either way need to start planning a business model and making room or moving to a different place.

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        • #5
          I haven't priced or compared Syil to anything in a long time. I can't afford to stop working and spend that much time fixing a machine before I can use it. We are talking about things like oil lines going into a blind hole in the casting. Ball nuts with no oil line at all. Missing spacers on ball screws. In one case an incomplete casting. There was a lot of stuff. My first Syil was an X4 Speedmaster that was not capable of cutting a square. It was a demo machine that I got for "free" in exchange for a machine I paid full price for (not Syil) that was a total turd. Syil refused to deal with the problem at all until the vendor threatened to stop selling their machines if they didn't take care of it. Syil's response? Well its not like its an X5. I bought two X5s. Those are the machines I spent months fixing before they were ok to use. I got absolutely no support from Syil and very little support from the dealer. One of them had more than a quarter inch of backlash because a ball screw spacer was missing. The other had z axis ballscrew bearigns that were bad out of the box. There is a huge list of repairs I made out of pocket for both time and parts.

          Ordinarily I try not to get to vulgar on forums, but F**K SYIL.

          I have not done any five axis machining, but I do occasionally do some 4th axis work on the Tormach. Its ok. I don't think they are really developed out for five axis work. Yeah Haas is expensive compared to pro-hobbyist machines, but they are fairly cheap compared to other industrial machines.
          *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Bob La Londe View Post
            I haven't priced or compared Syil to anything in a long time. I can't afford to stop working and spend that much time fixing a machine before I can use it. We are talking about things like oil lines going into a blind hole in the casting. Ball nuts with no oil line at all. Missing spacers on ball screws. In one case an incomplete casting. There was a lot of stuff. My first Syil was an X4 Speedmaster that was not capable of cutting a square. It was a demo machine that I got for "free" in exchange for a machine I paid full price for (not Syil) that was a total turd. Syil refused to deal with the problem at all until the vendor threatened to stop selling their machines if they didn't take care of it. Syil's response? Well its not like its an X5. I bought two X5s. Those are the machines I spent months fixing before they were ok to use. I got absolutely no support from Syil and very little support from the dealer. One of them had more than a quarter inch of backlash because a ball screw spacer was missing. The other had z axis ballscrew bearigns that were bad out of the box. There is a huge list of repairs I made out of pocket for both time and parts.

            Ordinarily I try not to get to vulgar on forums, but F**K SYIL.

            I have not done any five axis machining, but I do occasionally do some 4th axis work on the Tormach. Its ok. I don't think they are really developed out for five axis work. Yeah Haas is expensive compared to pro-hobbyist machines, but they are fairly cheap compared to other industrial machines.
            Oh, they are made in China, ok, Fu*k Syil, Haas it is or a used VMC that needs a new controller.
            Last edited by RB211; 03-24-2022, 09:06 PM.

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            • #7
              Wow, I obviously haven't spent much time on the forums, as I'd thought Syil was the 2nd coming to the hobby market. Good review Bob, I trust your judgement on these things, and it don't sound good.

              Honestly I would have rather got a haas vf2, or other similar sized industrial machine, but didn't have a spot to put it, nor the power to run it at the moment. I know the Tormach isn't on the same level as a haas. I run 4 haas machines daily at work (vf2,3,5,6) and it's not in the same league no matter how much some may love them. It is however adequate for the type of parts I'm throwing at it, and is power friendly, and I can wheel it around the garage on a pallet jack. It doesn't dim the lights in the house when the spindle ramps up either, and I can't even hear it running in the garage while sitting on the couch. Would I buy one new at current prices? Hell no. I'd rather spend the extra and get a haas, hands down.

              One day I will step up to a bigger machine, when the parts, and work dictate it.

              I'm curious about what type of work you will be doing to need the 5 axis. Is it a want, or do your parts really dictate the need for one. I'd like to build a 4th for the Tormach in the near future.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Dan Dubeau View Post
                Wow, I obviously haven't spent much time on the forums, as I'd thought Syil was the 2nd coming to the hobby market. Good review Bob, I trust your judgement on these things, and it don't sound good.

                Honestly I would have rather got a haas vf2, or other similar sized industrial machine, but didn't have a spot to put it, nor the power to run it at the moment. I know the Tormach isn't on the same level as a haas. I run 4 haas machines daily at work (vf2,3,5,6) and it's not in the same league no matter how much some may love them. It is however adequate for the type of parts I'm throwing at it, and is power friendly, and I can wheel it around the garage on a pallet jack. It doesn't dim the lights in the house when the spindle ramps up either, and I can't even hear it running in the garage while sitting on the couch. Would I buy one new at current prices? Hell no. I'd rather spend the extra and get a haas, hands down.

                One day I will step up to a bigger machine, when the parts, and work dictate it.

                I'm curious about what type of work you will be doing to need the 5 axis. Is it a want, or do your parts really dictate the need for one. I'd like to build a 4th for the Tormach in the near future.
                I want the capability of 5 axis. If I am spending the money on a machine tool that can do it, and if time is money on these machines and I can remove multiple ops with 5 axis, I should be more competitive. I've never designed anything that needs 5 axis because I never imagined I would have it. I sure would like to give it a try though. First thing that comes to mind is engine blocks for models. Also joystick hand grips for flight simulation or real life aviation.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by RB211 View Post

                  Oh, they are made in China, ok, Fu*k Syil, Haas it is or a used VMC that needs a new controller.
                  I have been similarly tempted over the years. Issues that keep appearing for a VMC are 1) the weight, 15K lbs not unusual 2) the power requirement, they usually have large spindle motors and in a residence would present problems supplying that much power, the utility company might frown on it too. 3) there are small VMC's that might fit the bill, such as the Haas mini mill or VF0, VF1 and the Leadshine MCV 0 would make a great residential machine but they are older and not common to find.

                  So, while I keep dreaming of upgrading, practicality always sets in. My bridgeport with its 4th axis and auxiliary 24K rpm spindle is pretty darned good for a hobby user. I guess its human nature to always want bigger nicer toys.

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                  • #10
                    Looking at just how much 4th and 5th axis costs, guess I'll be sticking to 3, for the first one at least.
                    If you look at all the YouTubers who started out small and went with their first VMC, I noticed it was exponential growth acquiring more, with a constant need for more spindles, as if these things print money in some cases. At least with the business oriented Youtubers. The strictly hobbyists ones don't seem to regret their purchase either though.

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                    • #11
                      I guess it really depends on what type of work you want to do. A decent quality knee mill that has been well CNCed will do more work for its size than just about anything else.

                      The thing about a big heavy fast high power VMCs is you have to keep it going nonstop to pay for it. A lot of times its not about the speed of the job, but always having it cutting a job. Pallet systems, fixture plates, multiple vises, etc. Preloading parts so the doors are only open for a minute is a big deal. Really pushing it they will run pallet systems with stacks of preloaded parts and a robot to load and unload the pallets from the machine. 100 part runs are just to keep the machine running if you are desperate. 1 part one off is not profitable. 1000 part runs start to make a little money. Lots of shops with those big machines don't take small parts runs because it doesn't usually pay.

                      I've got a buddy who owns a production shop. He asked me what I charge to make a custom mold. I gave him a range of examples, and he sighed as he said, "I just can't make any money doing jobs like that at those prices." I have small machines without huge payments. I know how to do everything including repair my own machines, and 75% of the people who contact me for a custom job still think I am smoking crack when I give them a price. What kills me is sometimes I can see their idea is real money, but they are to cheap to make it happen or they don't want to pay the guy who does the actual work because they think the idea itself is all the value. Sometimes they undervalue their own idea and don't think its worth investing in. They just want to try it on and see if it fits.

                      Last year I drove cross country to attend a celebration of life for my favorite uncle. While I was at the service a guy who hand ties flies as a hobby approached me as a fellow angling enthusiast. My uncle was a big time outdoors man... and a multi patented inventor. We got to talking and it turned out he was a shop manager for a big production company. We got to talking about machining and he was stunned to find out how much I get for a small production run of molds. He said his typical production run of parts was 10% of that per part. He also said his typical production run was 10 thousand pieces. I asked him if he could charge that little for just 100 parts. He said they couldn't even afford to take jobs that small. The setup time cost to much not even counting CAM.

                      There are a huge range of ways to do machining and types of jobs and they don't always comingle very well. It really depends on what type of work you want to do.

                      My buddy who said he couldn't make money at my prices got a personalized response. I told him, "Give them a price you can afford to do the job for. It's easier to sell to somebody standing in your shop than to the guy walking down the street." I've seen some of his work. It's very good.
                      *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Be careful basing a business model off of youtubers. You need a product to sell to keep spindles turning. There is no free lunch money just having something on the floor that can "make stuff" With youtube YOU are the product they are selling by watching their videos on widget machining. Or at least a good portion of it. Most of those guys are heavily leveraged with cheap money right now, or heavily subsidized by the MTB to showcase their products. Ya, they start out small and grow exponentially as their channel and viewership grows. I'd love to sit down and actually comb over their books. All that glitters is not gold.

                        That being said there is a good little cottage industry going there, and having a home shop CNC can certainly provide a decent enough side hustle income that will make a noticable difference in your quality of life, but to scale it up to the "quit your day job" level, you better have a good solid product to market, or a giant set of brass balls (and a wife with a good solid income ). The last part in brackets is actually something I've noticed about all the successful business people I've met over the years. It's a common enough pattern that it stuck out like a sore thumb. When you're building a business that by itself could take years to get going and be sustainable, you've got to have that solid income to keep the roof over you head and the amenities around.

                        RE: small machines and trunion tables. Rigidity is king, no matter the size of machine, but especially with hobby level machines. Those 5th axis trunions look cool, but they really are a wet noodle and eat up a ton of valuable real estate and part volume and give away a ton of valuable rigidity. Just to provide questionable, inaccurate positioning. Give me a good solid 3 axis machine with a 4th and creative fixturing for those oddball parts that require multi axis positioning. Very little part designs actually require or would benefit from true 5th axis capability. And they're not the type of parts to be run on a hobby grade level machine either. They typically require accuracy and surface finishes not attainable with a hobby grade machine.

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                        • #13
                          Always find it's funny when people talk about finishes and tolerances. The fact is it's possible to make quality parts on crappy machines. What you're doing is trading labor for capital.

                          The other side of that is sometimes those production parts don't have the finishes that people want you to believe. I was in a local fabrication shop one day and the shop manager proudly showed me a whole stack of steel replacement parts for common failures on certain classes of farm equipment. They literally had finishes off the machine that would make shark skin feel smooth. They said they sold them by the hundred.

                          The key is and always has been to make it as good as is necessary to get the customer to accept it at a price where you can continue to make them and pay your people.
                          *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Yeah, I come from the tooling side where dimensional accuracy and fit and finish matter. Every time we get a production job in the door I approach it from that angle, and it takes a while to dial things down into the realm of profitability. Losing money the whole way. Chatter marks, mismatched cutter blends, holes and pockets that look like an angry beaver chewed them out. Quality traded for cycle time. All acceptable for most consumer grade products. One of the many reasons I hate production work. You can notice it all around you on manufactured goods everywhere. You can even see ****ty toolmarks and cutter paths on molded products too. They stand out like bad welds on carnival rides.

                            I certainly agree with you that you can make good parts on crap machines. I've seen it, and I've done it. But my point with the multi axis add ons to hobby grade machines is that you're already in the hole with rigidity and machine accuracy, why trade any more for a perceived gain in functionality that just isn't there. Good machining fundamentals and practices will net you more gains than widgets and gadgets. Which is why good machinists can make good parts on crap machines.

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                            • #15
                              I'm not quitting my day job yet. I want to get a VMC sooner than later while I have a job that can pay for it outright. Buying it after I quit my day job would be too stressful. I'll have short term rental income coming in before I change careers. This is literally an expensive toy for me at first.
                              I set a goal to retire in 5 years from aviation, but only if I am able to replace my current income with vacation rentals.
                              This would be an additional income stream possibly, but it WILL be fully paid for long before I'd have to need it, if I'd even need it for survival.
                              In my scenario, I'd be perfectly happy if it just paid for itself.
                              Last edited by RB211; 03-25-2022, 10:18 PM.

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