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  • Need opinions on these milling machines!

    I'm in the process of picking out a milling machine (new or used). If I can get the table (or knee) off I think I can get this through my 30" door, otherwise if it appears to be too much of an operation I'll be buying the IH bench mill which I know I can get inside the house. After researching knee style milling machines I have narrowed the selection down to the following brands. I'm ruling out the Grizzly, Jet, and Birmingham models for now. I'm looking for a 9x42 / 9x49" Variable speed machine. I don't need a production machine at present just a good quality manual machine for now. Primarily to be used w/ aluminum and mild steel w/ smaller pieces and very basic operations. DRO and power feed will be added as well. If you had to pick from the following brands which one would you buy and why?.................Thanks in advance. I need some good opinions from some of you machinists as I am a novice when it comes to milling machines.

    Sharp...., Atrump,....Webb (champ mills).....Acer...............????

    Krems

  • #2
    Any particular reason you're discounting the Grizzly? I'm quite happy with mine so far. I'm told this exact model has been discontinued- I don't know why- and that the Mainland Chinese models (mine's Taiwanese) are not quite as good quality, but still the prices are fair and Grizzly's service is actually pretty good.

    Doc.
    Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)

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    • #3
      FWIW (not much) I have heard good things about Sharp machines.
      ----------
      Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
      Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
      Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
      There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
      Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
      Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie

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      • #4
        I have a Grizzly also and except for the play in the X axis it is better than the worn Jet it replaced. The play was taken out by adjustment under the table acording to the owners manual.

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        • #5
          DOC,
          Nice site showing the set up of your lathe. I'm not discounting the grizzly mill yet. I've heard mixed reports from machinists about jet-grizzly-birmingham mills. Looks to be a hit and miss.....depending on which day of the week you buy it. On the other hand i"ve heard nothing but good reports about the sharp-webb-atrump-acer machines. I'm sure they will all do the job however.

          Thanks..........Krems

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          • #6
            I have used Sharp mills in a previous job. They were very nice, I liked them better than the Bridgeports we had. They had more mass to them. I have not used an Acer, but know of some folks that have them. They look nice, and have heard no bad things about them.
            The others you have mentioned, I have no knowledge of at all.

            Kerry

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            • #7
              I owned and ran 2 Birmingham mills in the early 90's, they are good machines. Mine were used around 40-50 hours a week in a family business for 7 years. Got almost full price out of them when my father sold the company, the machines are both still running. I also have 2 friends that own newer models, they both love em.
              I'm probably gonna buy me a new one in the next year or so.

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              • #8
                My 9x49 Grizzly is about three years old and has been an excellent replacement for the older 9x36 Bp I used to run.

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                • #9
                  atrumps are generally very good machines for the price

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                  • #10
                    Any reason you are ruling out American Iron, Like Wells Index?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by IOWOLF
                      Any reason you are ruling out American Iron, Like Wells Index?
                      Maybe he wants to make parts, not learn how to scrape in a machine.

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                      • #12
                        What the FUQ ever.

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                        • #13
                          I've never heard of the Wells index machines......I'll have to look them up.
                          Has any one heard anything about or seen a Webb (champ mills) milling machine. Take a look at the link below and let me know what you think. Really nice people to talk to. They impressed me w/ the customer service


                          www.webbmachinery.com




                          thanks...krems

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                          • #14
                            Never used a Webb mill,but have used one of thier lathes,nice machine,it was made in Korea.

                            I would look for a Taiwan mill,reguardless of who's name is on it.We have one at work that's over 8 years old most of which was in small parts production.It's still tight and running the original motor.
                            I just need one more tool,just one!

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                            • #15
                              Surely anything made in Taiwan is American.Or at least overseen by Americans during their production.Their quality will be good if this is the case.Alistair
                              Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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