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HF rotary tables?

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  • HF rotary tables?

    Has anyone used a rotary table from HF? They are Chinese, I'm sure, but so is the Enco, and the HF has a much lower price.
    Just wondering if anyone had one and what they think of it.

  • #2
    I have a 4" from HF it is a POS. Save your money for a good one. One of my learning experiences things you rely on to be accurate should be of better quality.


    • #3
      There was a recent thread on the yahoo mill/drill site about this. If memory serves, the guy got the HF6" and was highly P.O.'d at the shoddiness, was made in India and he couldnt find a thing good to say. He turned around and got another from (I think) Little Machine Shop and was very pleased with it. He even posted some pix in the photo section comparing the 2, you might check the thread and pix out over there, ----was quite a bit of activity and info passed around during the thread.

      If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something........


      • #4

        I can't add any information about HF/Enco, but another thing to consider (although you may have done so already) is the size you need. Unless you can bolt straight through the part or use a chuck on the R/T to hold it, you also need room on there to clamp the part. This could mean getting a bigger table than you thought you needed.

        The trouble is they get damned heavy as they get bigger. My Hilby 10" table must weigh over a 100lbs and is not a lot of fun to lift on and off.
        With apologies if this is teaching you to suck eggs.



        • #5
          Does anyone know anything about vertex tables? They get a good name over here and are not too expensive.Alistair
          Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease


          • #6
            I bought the 6" rotary table from HF and it was indeed made in India with noticeable problems. The primary issue was the disengage cam for the worm with a spring pin that didn't fit at all. I reworked that to fit and made a new pin for the indexer as well. IIRC I made a new mount for the index plates too. It was more work than is should have been, but it now works entirely satisfactorily for me. My impression was that the significant items such as the worm and the index plate holes were well enough made but they fell down on small details.

            Jan M.
            "People will occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of the time they will pick themselves up and carry on" : Winston Churchill


            • #7
              Originally posted by Alistair Hosie
              Does anyone know anything about vertex tables? They get a good name over here and are not too expensive.Alistair
              Hey Alistair. I have an 8 inch Vertex rotary table that I bought about a year ago. Me and a friend bought one a piece at the same time and we have both been very happy with it. Sometimes I wish I had went ahead and bought the 10 inch model but I was afraid it would be too big. The 10 inch model has 6 t-slots in it while the 8 inch only has 4 which I think would help out with bolting down odd shaped parts. They also offer the index plates for them and I bought them too but I haven't had to use them yet.
              Jonathan P.


              • #8
                HF Rotary Tables

                It has been my experience that stuff from India is Junk, I think it all goes back to their "Cass " social system, most of my stuff from China (Enco) no problems as I think Enco has some sort of quality control. I also have noticed that HF seems at the very bottom end on quality so that is why the price is so low and from what I have seen Indian iron is like charcoal it's so coursely grained.



                • #9
                  "It has been my experience that stuff from India is Junk"

                  I would agree. If I have any option (which I do) I would not buy anything, and I mean anything made in India (ok, cept the food, I like the food....oh, and the women,,,beautiful women (not to buy of course)). But my experience with tooling and metal from India has been similar in quality to a non-industrialized country. India has nukies dont they, yikes. Hopefully that is where all the good steel and craftsmanship whet because it has not been in their small tooling export.

                  I'm sure they will eventually come around. Used to be folks thought stuff coming outta Japan and Germany were junk. Then came the made in Taiwan "junk label" now China is on the junk list with India below them. Twenty five years from now the Chinese stuff may be comparable to Japanese tooling of today and the Philippine Islands and Manila will be competing for the junk label with Ethiopia.

                  Dont get me wrong, not country bashin, love them all... Everyone has something to offer, even Iran and Venezuela with their oil.

                  Ooopps, sorry,,,I strayed..
                  So, living close to Harbor Freight and having examined their rotary tables I would not buy one, and I buy alot of HF stuff. JRouche
                  My old yahoo group. Bridgeport Mill Group



                  • #10
                    As a newbie with a mill I need help with a rotary table. I sorta got sucked in to Smithy for machines so I decided to shop around for tools as I should have done for the machines. Does anyone know of quality for Phase II tables? I agree with one post here about paying for quality but if your not oh so careful you can easily pay quality price and still get junk!
                    Smithy sells tools but I have checked and their prices are much higher than others. They offer the 8" Vertex for 339.00 while I see the Phase II is 239.00. Looks the same but I know looks are the last thing to base on.
                    Any suggestions on what to buy and where would be appreciated.

                    Life Is Grand


                    • #11
                      Rotary Table

                      I believe that Phase II is pretty decent but do not have personal experience with it. I would not rush out an buy one right away unless you need one for a specific project. I have one but does not get a lot of use. If you have a DRO you can do the math or look up the coordinats in the Machinery handbook for bolt circles and nothave to cange out your vise. Also if you can get to a show like Iron Fever /Cabin Fever you can see and touch what is available and compare before you buy.
                      Ad maiorem dei gloriam - Ad vitam paramus


                      • #12
                        heah I just emailed you so I won't repeat all here. Talking about DRO I just saw on here a plug for the Jenkins 2 axis. DO you know anything about it? That is something I will be getting right away. Of course I do not think the Smithy is set up for it so I guess I will have to drill holes in the bondo as much of these two machines I got have more bondo than the worst rust bucket car I ever owned.
                        Life Is Grand


                        • #13
                          I bought my vertex table from Penn tool and they told me that the phase II tables are from China and the Vertex tables come from Taiwan. This may or not make one better than the other but they sold both and had looked at both and said that they like the Vertex table better. It is more expensive also so they may have been making their decision on that, but I have been real pleased with it. Yes, you can do bolt circles with a little math and without the rotary table. I wouldn't change the vice out for the rotary table just for bolt circles unless I had a lot to do. Where the rotary table comes in handy is doing contour mill work like corner rounding and making cams and other items which are next to impossible to make on anything other than a cnc machine.
                          Jonathan P.


                          • #14
                            The PhaseII rotary table's that I have used were real good.But that goes back about 10 years ago.I don't know about newer ones.I will say that PhaseII quality seems to be up and down.Some things are good and some are junk.