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  • grizzly anyone

    Hey all,
    First post here.
    Not gonna ask the same question,"How do you like your Grizzly Lathe?" but I would like to put my hands on one.
    Quick overview: I am a USNAVY trained machinist. Obviously the equipment we had was top notch,Leblond, Cincinatti, Wells Index,Clausing etc. Then I worked in another shop for about 8 years and we also had good equipment.
    Since I changed careers a few years back i really find myself missing machine work. I am in the market for a small lathe 12x36 neighborhood. So Ive never ran or even been around one of the chinese lathes. Would like to see one in person before i commit to an order. Anyone in the central VIRGINIA area have a grizzly lathe i could drop by and see?

  • #2
    I do not have a griz nor am I any where near you, but would share some things





    Note One: The differrent lathes are often completely identical.
    Note Two: Grizzly has better fit and finish than some other importers, even for identical machines, and has better manuals.
    Note Three: Accuracy is often good. De burring and torquing are sometimes neglected. Dissassembly may be helpful.

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi,first let me say welcome!

      I don't have a Grizzly lathe,but I do have a few pieces of their woodworking equipment of which I am happy.

      They do carry a good supply of parts for their machines which is a plus.
      I just need one more tool,just one!

      Comment


      • #4
        I just have to put in a plug for buying used. You've run these machines and know what a good machine is, so why not see about finding a 12"-16" used lathe. You can go and inspect and, if your lucky, probably buy twice the quality that you could buy at grizzly for the same price.

        Comment


        • #5
          It may have changed but grizzly used to supply customer referrals to owners of their equipment on request. I quick call to them would see if this service is still offered.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by fullsizejohn
            Obviously the equipment we had was top notch,Leblond, Cincinatti, Wells Index,Clausing etc. Then I worked in another shop for about 8 years and we also had good equipment.
            Yikes, prepare yourself for a big step down in fit, finish and rigidity if you decide to go with a chinese lathe. I was in a similar situation, learned on nice American iron but needed a lathe for my shop and was considering import as out here on the west coast nice US lathes are not easy to find.

            The imports looked good in the catalogs, but the first time I saw one in person and put my hands on it, I almost puked realizing how close I had come to having to live with a big mistake, but I'm pretty "emotional" about my machines, so maybe I'm just too hung up on the look and feel of nice old american iron.

            I have some import machines in my shop and they get the job done but are nothing I'm too excited about operating or owning. Having a chinese lathe after becoming used to US ones would have been too much to take though. I held out and eventually found a nice Clausing. Its the only really nice machine I have in the shop, but at least I have one.

            If you do decide to go import though, talk to the guy that runs this company - http://www.machinetoolonline.com/ .

            He's a straight shooter that is very knowledgeable about the various import lathes, and he backs up his products after the sale. He helped me get a part for one of my older import machines (not an easy thing to do) even though I haven't bought any machines from him.

            Good luck-

            Paul T.
            Last edited by PaulT; 01-01-2009, 03:07 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              I get yelled at for saying this, but, you gotta compare apples to apples.

              A new American made 12"x36" lathe is not really available, but the two closest lathes, the Monarch 10EE and the Hardinge HLVH, both cost more than $60,000.
              IF, and its a big IF, you could buy a new Clausing, Leblond, Cinncinnati, or Monarch, Axelson, American Pacemaker, or similar american made lathe today, there is no question such a machine would cost you $50,000 to $100,000 in todays dollars, for a 12x36 sized lathe.

              So when you say, those crummy $2500 chinese machines are no match for a $80,000 Clausing, well, as my kids would say "DUH!".

              All $2500 to $4500 import lathes are similar, although its an urban legend that they are the SAME machine- there are probably 100 lathe factories in China, and seemingly similar machines often are very different.

              But none of the $2500 lathes, be they from Grizzly, Enco, or JET, are really $50,000 lathes in disguise.

              YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.

              You want a good chinese lathe, you can get em- but you pay for em. Personally, I think the JET lathes, at the high end, are better than the Grizzly lathes- that is the ZX series, which start at more than $10,000, and, with DRO and Collet closer, can hit $18,000 or $20,000 pretty quickly in the larger sizes.

              If I was shopping for a 12x36 import lathe, I would be looking at a machine like this- Okay, its really a 14x40-
              http://www.southern-tool.com/store/j...ing_lathe.html

              It weighs 5000lbs, has a 7 1/2Hp motor, and, compared to the $50k plus price an american made NEW lathe would cost, if you could get one, is a pretty decent tool for the money. Seventeen grand, with taper, collet closer, and DRO.

              I have been running a similar Jet ZX for about 5 years now, and I like it a lot. It is NO MATCH for a good sixties or fifties american made machine- but they dont make em anymore.

              You want the closest equivalent to a new american made lathe you can get now, and you spend a LOT more money- Schaublin still makes manual lathes, as do a few other German, Swiss, and French companies. They are as good or better than any american lathe ever made. And, before import duties, shipping, and brokerage fees, they will run you well north of $50,000, depending on the strength of the dollar to the euro this week.
              Last edited by Ries; 01-01-2009, 04:10 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                I don't think Clausing is in the quality class of Monarch, American Pacemaker, Leblond ...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Ries



                  "as do a few other German, Swiss, and French companies."
                  Ries, could you name European lathe companies.

                  I can think of Emco and Wabeco. What else is out there?



                  Edit Harrison UK
                  Last edited by Davidhcnc; 01-01-2009, 06:06 PM.
                  "...do you not think you have enough machines?"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    All great comments guys. I appreciate it.

                    I have been searching the craigslist semi-local(250 miles) for a few months and it seems that i havent seen anything that suits but maybe I'll give it a bit longer and farther. I do hate the idea of getting 3k into a griz then seeing 2k south bend pop up the next week.
                    This is definately a "want" as apposed to a "need" so time is on my side.
                    thanks again

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Ries
                      I get yelled at for saying this, but, you gotta compare apples to apples.

                      A new American made 12"x36" lathe is not really available, but the two closest lathes, the Monarch 10EE and the Hardinge HLVH, both cost more than $60,000.
                      IF, and its a big IF, you could buy a new Clausing, Leblond, Cinncinnati, or Monarch, Axelson, American Pacemaker, or similar american made lathe today, there is no question such a machine would cost you $50,000 to $100,000 in todays dollars, for a 12x36 sized lathe.

                      So when you say, those crummy $2500 chinese machines are no match for a $80,000 Clausing, well, as my kids would say "DUH!".

                      All $2500 to $4500 import lathes are similar, although its an urban legend that they are the SAME machine- there are probably 100 lathe factories in China, and seemingly similar machines often are very different.

                      But none of the $2500 lathes, be they from Grizzly, Enco, or JET, are really $50,000 lathes in disguise.

                      YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.


                      Absolutely. BUT - you might be surprised at how many times you can find one of those 50K+ lathes for 2K with more life left in them than the brand-new 2K lathes from China. Thats all I'm saying. And I aggree, you can get very good import machines, like Mori Seiko.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Wonder how an Acra Turn 1340 compares?

                        Thanks,
                        Mark

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I've one of these http://www.grizzly.com/products/g4003g
                          sitting on my carport awaiting transport to my walkout basement shop in Fletcher, NC. The Grizzly president happens to be a benchrest competition shooter and takes a personal interest in his gunsmith lathe offerings. So this model features NSK or Timken spindle bearings, a quick change toolpost, 1-5/8" spindle bore, outboard stock (gun barrel) support, heavy cast iron pedestals, and a means for tweaking tailstock alignment.

                          You may wish to research 12x36 Grizzly lathes on these forums:

                          http://groups.yahoo.com/group/12x36i...yguid=82731466

                          http://www.benchrest.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=17

                          David Merrill

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            What do you mean you can't buy a new American made Southbend/Leblond?
                            For 20,000$ you can have one! Now would you buy one instead of a larger chinese lathe for less money?
                            http://www.southbendlathe.com/GS26LT.htm

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Fasttrack
                              Absolutely. BUT - you might be surprised at how many times you can find one of those 50K+ lathes for 2K with more life left in them than the brand-new 2K lathes from China.
                              about once every 20 years...
                              Precision takes time.

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