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What should a Bridgeport cost?

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  • What should a Bridgeport cost?

    Having been bitten by the metal muncher bug, I've been toying with the idea of upgrading from my small Grizzly mill to a Bridgeport. I know there is not an exact answer but, generally speaking, what should I expect to have to pay for one in decent shape? We can limit the assumptions to my looking at the basic 1hp, non-variable speed, DRO-less version.

    I've been watching Craigslist for some time, and have seen a few in the range of $2500 to $3500. I figure knowing what I should expect to pay may help avoid low dollar runout machines being dumped on the uninformed buyer, i.e. me.

    Thanks.

  • #2
    I think the price range you quoted is about right. The price will vary according to the quality of the mill. A clean tight mill will go higher than a worn loose mill.
    It's only ink and paper

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    • #3
      Yeah, that sounds about average. It depends somewhat on where you are. If you're located someplace where there is a lot of used machinery around, prices may tend to be lower.

      You might get more bang for the buck if you can find a good-quality used import. The Bridgeport name often raises the price.
      ----------
      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
        In the UK you can get a reasonable one for about £500 -£600, I never understand why they cost so much over your side of the Pond.
        You must have a lot more of them than us as well?

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        • #5
          I gave $2300 for a variable speed Bridgeport in excellent condition With X axis power feed and DRO. It just popped up in a small newspaper classified near me. No tooling. Several years earlier I had given $4000 for a very tired but well equiped step pulley machine. I sold it for $2300 and kept the tooling. There are good deals out there but you have to be quick. The good ones don't last long. I saw four working CNC machines go for $700-$800 at an auction. They were a name that I was not familiar with. Given the choice I would much prefer the step pulley machine.
          Byron Boucher
          Burnet, TX

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Boucher
            Given the choice I would much prefer the step pulley machine.
            Do you mean that you would prefer a step pulley BP over a variable speed? If so, may I ask why?

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            • #7
              The reeves drives in most variable speed machines are loud and eat a lot of horse power. A step pulley machine with a VFD is much quieter and smoother.

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              • #8
                Around here I have seen them go for as little as $500 to over $6000 depending on tightness and tooling . I missed a very good mill at an estate auction that went for $1200 with two Kennedy Machinist chests full of mic's and other hand tools , three big cabinets , and a heavy shelving unit with two rotary tables and other assorted tooling . I missed it by 15 minutes . If you buy it at auction , then no holds are barred .
                Dan

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                • #9
                  I picked up my K&T 2D for $500. I had considered getting a BP, but after using them at work all the time, I found them to be somewhat frusterating. It seemed like I would tram in the head, leave for a day, come back and it would be all out-of-whack. Plus, I often found myself wishing it had a larger table or more travel.

                  The 2D is a fixed head machine, so it's not quite as "agile" as a turret-head, but it is WHOLE BUNCH more rigid than a turret-head. Plus, it has a large, completely supported table. With a new vice, my .0001 Interapid DTI indicated less than .0001" deviation from one corner of the 6" vise to the other. It's a real pleasure to use.

                  My point is, don't limit yourself to BP mills. You may be able to find a used, fixed head machine at a fraction of the cost. It isn't horribly often that most people need to take advantage of the turret head feature and, if you do, you can always build a simple jig and accomplish the same thing on a fixed head machine. Don't be intimidated by the larger size - they are "movable" with some pipe and a pry-bar, just like a BP would be

                  (I don't have anything against BP, exactly - its just that when I first got into this hobby I thought the BP mill was the "end-all and be-all" of mills. Don't make that mistake!)

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MickeyD
                    The reeves drives in most variable speed machines are loud and eat a lot of horse power. A step pulley machine with a VFD is much quieter and smoother.
                    And fewer things to go wrong later.

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                    • #11
                      Just was Offered

                      A 2004 Vintage Low Hours of Use. First Mill power Feed x axis DRO (heidhein) in x y and also z (Nice to have z) for 3000 dollars with a set of collets and a power drawbar and vice. I was interested but my 1961 vintage step pulley Bridgeport Nill is still good enough for me. Times are tough gottah save money for a novokon 2000 cnc Mill LOL

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                      • #12
                        u need to get some estimates as to what shipping would be. I found alot of 2500 dollar mills available for sale, and they looked good, but they ended up costing more than a brand new mill would cost, with free shipping. So look around and see what you can get. I got a brand new birmingham knee mill (same style as bridgeport) for 4600 dollars, and free shipping.

                        check it out and see what the real price is gonna be.

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                        • #13
                          Thanks guys.

                          Thanks for all of the good advice.

                          Unless I get a new one, I will only buy locally so that I can inspect it.

                          Strangely, there just don't seem to be many available in the Seattle/Tacoma area, which is odd since it used to be the home of Boeing.

                          The thought of buying one did get me motivated to strip down the burned out x-power-feed on my mill/drill today...long table, close wall

                          So I've got THAT going for me

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                          • #14
                            What about:

                            http://seattle.craigslist.org/tac/tls/1396575308.html
                            or
                            http://seattle.craigslist.org/see/tls/1396585443.html

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Braindead
                              Thanks for all of the good advice.

                              Unless I get a new one, I will only buy locally so that I can inspect it.

                              Strangely, there just don't seem to be many available in the Seattle/Tacoma area, which is odd since it used to be the home of Boeing.

                              The thought of buying one did get me motivated to strip down the burned out x-power-feed on my mill/drill today...long table, close wall

                              So I've got THAT going for me
                              Part of the problem is Seattle is Seattle...with many retired machinists...with garages of machines and tools.

                              And many of the machine shops are now gone.

                              Including treasure troves like closed Boeing Surplus where one could buy surplus machines/tooling in the past.

                              High demand...low supply.

                              TMT

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