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  • Mill Quality Questions

    Im looking at getting the following mill
    http://www.machineryhouse.com.au/M126
    Can anyone tell me the quality/regidity of this machine?
    Looks amazing Any owners out there with some reveiws?

  • #2
    I think Tiffie works there part time or something, he should know about it.

    Comment


    • #3
      It is an up-graded/up-dated version of the older HF-45.

      I have the HF-45 mill which is quite robust and accurate and I am quite satisfied with it.

      There are others here from Australia who have that mill bought from Hare & Forbes (aka :Machinery House") that might like to add their advice as it all helps.

      I presume that the OP has seen the machine at Hare & Forbes (Brisbane) and if not my advice is that he does to actually see and "get the feel" of it even if he doesn't get to run it.

      Comment


      • #4
        That size machine is pretty good. If you would like a little more travel and bit more beef, have a look at the Titan mill below. It is the same as the US sell under industrial hobbies mill with the big table, big flange head for just on $3000, but no power feed or coolant.
        These are the machines they like to CNC and some just need the extra travel.
        http://titanmachinery.com.au/index.p...mart&Itemid=66

        He has other machines like the 46, so have a look around.
        I have never bought a machine off him, but bought my vise there years ago and he was good to deal wit. One guy not so long back had one shipped to Queensland and was happy with it.

        Dave

        Comment


        • #5
          Only difference i can see between the two are; titans has bigger table with more travel. Thats it...And it deosnt came with a motorised vertical travel, longditudeinal powerfeed, control pannel or coolant. The hare and forbes mill has forward and reverse. Does that mean it can tap? also titans has a bigger quill (115mm diameter compared to 75mm) bridgeports only have a 75mm quill...any point in a bigger one?
          Overall I think the HAFCO mill looks like a better unit.. opinions?

          Comment


          • #6
            One thing the HM 48 impressed me is it has tapered gibs. Tapered gibs when properly fitted and adjusted are significantly more rigid and durable than setscrew gibs. They are more expensively to implement but worth it in my estimation.

            One thing that dismays me is it has a #3 Morse spindle taper. If I had my'druthers, I druther have a #30 milling taper or for a distant second best an R8 like on a turret mill. A #30 milling taper and the R8 are 1 1/4" (31+mm) on the gage line whereas the #3 Morse is 0.938" (24-mm); significantly less rigid.

            I see the milling head has 6 geared speeds. Are variable frequency drives readily available in Oz? If so can you get this machine with a 3 phase motor? The VFD will fill in the gaps very nicely plus you can run the machine at very low spindle speeds for those operations that call for it.
            Last edited by Forrest Addy; 06-01-2012, 05:18 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              I have a HM52 and it is fairly rigid and I have taken some reasonably heavy cuts in stainless and alloyed steels without much chatter , it depends on the speed and amount of coolant at times , some of the rubbish being passed off as steel machines good on one piece and the next gives a rough surface for the same settings , all from the same bar.
              These handle aluminium with ease a d I have hogged up to 1/4 inch deep cuts when roughing out.

              As Tiffie said go and try one then decide if it meets your needs.
              Michael

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Bryce.R
                Only difference i can see between the two are; titans has bigger table with more travel. Thats it...And it doesn't came with a motorised vertical travel, longditudeinal powerfeed, control pannel or coolant. The hare and forbes mill has forward and reverse. Does that mean it can tap? also titans has a bigger quill (115mm diameter compared to 75mm) bridgeports only have a 75mm quill...any point in a bigger one?
                Overall I think the HAFCO mill looks like a better unit.. opinions?

                It's up to you, I was just giving another option. If the travels suit you on the 48 it will be the one to go for. But if you are limited in space and need longer travels the Titan machine would be the one to go for, the accessories could be added latter.
                From memory the Titan also has around 300mm Y travel and I know for sure it has a bigger collar on the head for more support. You would probably find it had more weight in it's castings over the H&F model.

                I am not recommending either machine, just giving you another option if you need the travel and a machine that is a bit more rigid.

                I have a HM52 and while they are a bigger and better machine, it took returning 2 mills to get a half decent one.

                Dave

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Forrest Addy
                  One thing the HM 48 impressed me is it has tapered gibs. Tapered gibs when properly fitted and adjusted are significantly more rigid and durable than setscrew gibs. They are more expensively to implement but worth it in my estimation.

                  One thing that dismays me is it has a #3 Morse spindle taper. If I had my'druthers, I druther have a #30 milling taper or for a distant second best an R8 like on a turret mill. A #30 milling taper and the R8 are 1 1/4" (31+mm) on the gage line whereas the #3 Morse is 0.938" (24-mm); significantly less rigid.

                  I see the milling head has 6 geared speeds. Are variable frequency drives readily available in Oz? If so can you get this machine with a 3 phase motor? The VFD will fill in the gaps very nicely plus you can run the machine at very low spindle speeds for those operations that call for it.
                  My older (current) HF-45 has tapered gibs - not all that flash but they work. I am not at all sure that they contact the surface both sides of them as they should and I'm not going to dismantle anything to find out as its working well enough. If I ever have to dismantle the mill I will insert grub screws to the gib tapers as I've have no problems with them on my Sieg X3 mills and on my grinders.

                  R8 are or seem to be the spindle taper of choice in the US (same as BP?) whereas in OZ and NZ and maybe UK it is the reverse where MT3 is the default taper and R8 may be a "special". All my mills (3) have MT3 spindle tapers and they work just fine if they are not abused.

                  I have no problems with the six (only) spindle speeds as generally I lift the speed until the machine/job lets me know its too high and I either drop the speed or use a smaller cutter and/or reduce the feed rate until I fand an acceptable speed and feed "sweet spot".

                  If there is a 3-phase and/or variable speed motor I haven't heard of it but then I haven't asked or looked around for it either as I haven't felt a need for one.

                  Getting the tram right can be a real PITA but with patience and perseverance you will soon find and master the knack of it and it will be easier.

                  I haven't tried it but the forward/reverse switch for the spindle used for tapping needs pretty good reflexes and eyes as it would be easy to crash if you "bottom" a tap. I have that feature on my Sieg SX3 and it needs to run slowly but it works.

                  I bought a tapping head just to be sure.

                  All in all, my HF-45 does all I want it to do - but "Tool Room work" may require a better machine but for day to day work its just fine - especially if you use "Limits and Fits ("Tolerance") tables to advantage.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Once again Tiffie you write to tell us that anything in excess of your specific equipment is not only superfluous to sensible need but wasteful and probably treasonous.

                    Different strokes. Some like three phase motors and variable speed some don't. That's preference for a home shop but possibly a decision affecting the bottom line in a business. I've seen industry studies showing variable speed control leads to greater productivity.

                    Common usage does vary. R8 is the pervasive small mill spindle config in the US. Not so the rest of the world? Nearning new stuff every day. OTH, Morse is cool but a #3? Can't I have a #4? Stiff as an R8.

                    Grub screws to augment a tapered gib? You're an intelligent man. Why not simply adjust it?

                    And tapping in a mill with a high minimum speed, no motor brake, and lots of system inertia is a PITA and a deft hand at the reverse switch is a real necessity. OTH a VFD gives you a speed range down to 5 Hz if you need it, electronic braking, instant reversing and, if you're clever, a foot pedal reverse switch so you can hit the depth and instantly reverse the tap out.

                    You remind me of the horse and buggy hold-outs at the advent of the horseless carriage. Hey, Tiffie! Hear that? That sustle and whisper. Stand still long enough and it grows to be an on-coming rumble and roar; swelling to overwhelm all in its tumult and turbulence, crushing, overturning, washing away everything before it like a river in flood. That ominous whisper you're denying is called Progress - soon to come to a shop near you.
                    Last edited by Forrest Addy; 06-01-2012, 07:53 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Forrest Addy
                      Once again Tiffie you write to tell us that anything in excess of your specific equipment is not only superfluous to sensible need but wasteful and probably treasonous.

                      I'm sure I didn't say that at all - the OP wanted to know any thoughts on a specific machine "as supplied" - just a single phase motor with a 6=speed gear-box.

                      Different strokes. Some like three phase motors and variable speed some don't that's preference for a home shop but possibly a decision affecting the bottom line in a business. I've seen iindustry studies showing that variable speed control leads to greater productivity.

                      Again as I said I am not aware if 3-phase motors are available for that machine. Perhaps the OP might like to think about it as it might be a bonus but perhaps he has a budget to keep within. If its a home work-shop, "productivity" may be a lesser issue than in a production envoronment - or not an issue at all.


                      Grub screws to augment a tapred gib? You're an intelligent man. Why not simply adjust it?

                      As I said I am not at all sure that my gibs have any sort of acceptable contact at all as they work well enough for my purposes. It may be another matter for others. But I have no reason to dismantle my "X, "Y" and "Z" gibs and slides to find out - as "grub screws" - as per my two Sieg XS and SXS work very well indeed with "grub screws" - as do my grinders.

                      I am not in the business of telling anyone in this instance how or what to do with his machines - the subject modernised HF-45 that the OP is contemplating very much included. He - and others - can and should make their own decisions based on their needs and experience with their machine/s


                      And tapping with a high minimum speed, no motor brake, and lots of system inertia is a PITA and a deft hand at the reverse switch is a real necessity. OTH a VFD gives you a speed range down to 5 Hz if you need it, electronic braking, instant reversing and, if you're clever, a foot pedal reverse switch so you can hit the depth and instantly reverse the tap out.

                      You have just made a very good case for a tapping head to be used in a mill and/or a pedestal drill - or even a good portable drill - mounted properly and external to the mill.

                      You remind me of the horse and buggy hold-outs at the advent of the horseless carriage. Hey, Tiffie! Hear that? That sustle and whisper. Stand still long enough and it grows to be an on-coming rumble and roar; swelling to overwhelm all in its tumult and turbulence cruching or washing away everything before it like a river in flood? That ominous whisper you're trying to hold back is called Progress soon to come to a shop near you.
                      Well as I am 75 and with possibly ten years to go in the shop (if I am lucky and others are not), it better get a move on.

                      You really do wax lyrical at times Forrest.
                      Last edited by oldtiffie; 06-01-2012, 08:03 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thanks Everyone Very good advise Tiffie one final question.. i wont be playing around with this mill, it will be used in a workshop and will be the only mill. I guess you are only limited to your creativity, but will this mill be what im looking for?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          1,600 rpm max spindle speed will cramp your style with aluminium and small diameter cutters. It's real easy to break 3mm end-mills at 1,600 rpm.You can speed it up with a VFD and a 3 phase motor but the gears could get real noisy.

                          I ran an RF40 clone for a number of years, so I have some experience with that type of head.

                          Phil

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Forrest Addy
                            .....
                            A #30 milling taper and the R8 are 1 1/4" (31+mm) on the gage line whereas the #3 Morse is 0.938" (24-mm); significantly less rigid.
                            ......
                            "gage line" ...that's a new term to me.

                            I googled it and got this definition on toolingu.com:
                            "The imaginary line marking the portion of the toolholder that matches the bottom edge of the machine spindle. The distance from the tip of the tool to the gage line determines a tool's specific tool length offset. "

                            Still not totally clear. For, say an R8, would that be the largest diameter of the R8 taper at the mouth of the spindle nose? (...or I guess that would be the nostril. )

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Bryce,
                              I haven't run that exact mill so my comments should be read with that in mind.

                              Maybe I missed it, But I didn't see any type of one shot oiling system on that mill.

                              I'd also strongly reccommend pulling the X,Y table assembly apart before even using it. None of these mills are assembled in anything remotely resembling clean room conditions. When I did my 3/4 sized Bridgeport clone, I certainly didn't find pounds of cast iron and grinding dust. But there was more than enough to make the time spent very worth while. Your new mill will operate much smoother and last far longer by doing that cleaning. I also ended up with .004 of backlash on the feedscrews verses over .030 with the factory adjustments. Even the tapered gibs were set up fairly loose because of all that preservitve grease. If I was buying a brand new Bridgeport today, I'd still pull the table assembly apart for cleaning the preservitive off and verify that all the oiling points were in fact getting the correct amount.

                              Unless it's built in and again I missed it. I'd add some type of threaded ejection setup for that MT. I'm not real happy pounding on the end of the drawbar to get the MT to release from the spindle taper.

                              Getting that mills rear coloum correctly trammed in is going to take some lifting gear like an engine hoist while your scrapeing and/or shimming it's mounting points into correct alignment. And probably a good shop made cylindrical square along with a dial indicator would be the easiest way to get that vertical alignment in both X&Y to the table. I can't recall ever reading about any of these mills being 100% correct from the factory. So you may as well plan on doing that job too.

                              Just how soon do you want that mill? You might want to double check with H&F to see if that mill can be special ordered to fit your personal wants and needs a bit better. Just because a dealer only sells a machine tool in their own configuration, That doesn't mean it can't be ordered setup a bit different. Depending on the dealer, Some may or may not want to do the bit of extra paperwork between themselves and the factory for a special order though. I've seen these types of mills offered with 3 phase motors and even powered downfeeds on the spindle for boring. At least the Rong-Fu factory offers them. Who knows if the factory H&R are dealing with does?

                              Pete

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