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Re: What type of oil did you put into your lathemaster?

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  • ronniebilt
    If a bronze or brass gear is in your rotary table, hypoid gear oil will eat at the gear, because of the sulfur in it. If you want to use 90wt you have to use
    Message 1 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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      If a bronze or brass gear is in your rotary table, hypoid gear oil
      will eat at the gear, because of the sulfur in it. If you want to
      use 90wt you have to use mineral gear oil. I would think to use a
      machine oil like ISO AW 68 which is 20WT, which is a little thinner
      than 90WT.

      Ronniebilt

      --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Alan E. Lutz" <lutz48@a...>
      wrote:
      > Since we are discussing oil, what weight oil do you all think
      should go into a rotary table? I recently purchased a 6" Phase II
      Rotary Table. The manual says to fill the reservoir with oil, but
      did not say whay kind. I would think 90 wt hypoid oil would be
      appropriate, but am beginning to questions that?
      >
      > Alan Lutz
      >
      >
      > ---- cncitall <ckeith1@n...> wrote:
      > >
      > > <html><body>
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > <tt>
      > > <BR>
      > > I dumped in 90wt gear oil into my lathemaster now I'm wondering
      if <BR>
      > > that was correct. Maybe I'll give bob a call.<BR>
      > > <BR>
      > > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Richard"
      odomrm@m... wrote:<BR>
      > > > <BR>
      > > > <BR>
      > > > Steve,<BR>
      > > > <BR>
      > > > I've been very pleased with my Lathemaster ZAY7045FG in the
      18 <BR>
      > > months<BR>
      > > > I've had it.  It came with a 2hp motor wired for
      220vac single <BR>
      > > phase.<BR>
      > > >  Most of these machines have 1 or 1.5 hp motors.<BR>
      > > > <BR>
      > > > www.lathemaster.com<BR>
      > > > <BR>
      > > > Richard<BR>
      > > > <BR>
      > > > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "mechwerks"
      spencx@a... wrote:<BR>
      > > > > <BR>
      > > > > I imagine a lot of you have done a bit of hunting for
      best <BR>
      > > prices on <BR>
      > > > > a RF-45 type mill / drill. <BR>
      > > > > I am looking to purchase a machine in the next couple
      of weeks <BR>
      > > and <BR>
      > > > > was hoping so people could share their results for
      finding the <BR>
      > > best <BR>
      > > > > price. I am looking for a RF-45 square column mill (or
      copy) <BR>
      > > with <BR>
      > > > > single phase motor. Other than that, no other special
      whistles <BR>
      > > and <BR>
      > > > > bells, just a basic mill.<BR>
      > > > > I appreciate any help some one may care to ofter.<BR>
      > > > > <BR>
      > > > > Steve,<BR>
      > > > > MechWerks Fabrication<BR>
      > > > > www.mechwerks.com Custom motorcycle parts for
      fabricators.<BR>
      > > <BR>
      > > <BR>
      > > <BR>
      > > </tt>
      > >
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    • Alan E. Lutz
      You might want to read this... http://www.machinerylubrication.com/article_detail.asp?articleid=169&relatedbookgroup=Lubrication Alan ... From: ronniebilt To:
      Message 2 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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        You might want to read this...
         
         
        Alan
        ----- Original Message -----
        Sent: Monday, January 10, 2005 9:04 AM
        Subject: [mill_drill] Re: What type of oil did you put into your lathemaster?



        If a bronze or brass gear is in your rotary table, hypoid gear oil
        will eat at the gear, because of the sulfur in it.  If you want to
        use 90wt you have to use mineral gear oil. I would think to use a
        machine oil like ISO AW 68 which is 20WT, which is a little thinner
        than 90WT.

        Ronniebilt

        --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Alan E. Lutz" <lutz48@a...>
        wrote:
        >  Since we are discussing oil, what weight oil do you all think
        should go into a rotary table?  I recently purchased a 6" Phase II
        Rotary Table.  The manual says to fill the reservoir with oil, but
        did not say whay kind.  I would think 90 wt hypoid oil would be
        appropriate, but am beginning to questions that?
        >
        > Alan Lutz
        >
        >
        > ---- cncitall <ckeith1@n...> wrote:
        > >
        > > <html><body>
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > <tt>
        > > <BR>
        > > I dumped in 90wt gear oil into my lathemaster now I'm wondering
        if <BR>
        > > that was correct. Maybe I'll give bob a call.<BR>
        > > <BR>
        > > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, &quot;Richard&quot;
        odomrm@m... wrote:<BR>
        > > &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; Steve,<BR>
        > > &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; I've been very pleased with my Lathemaster ZAY7045FG in the
        18 <BR>
        > > months<BR>
        > > &gt; I've had it.&nbsp; It came with a 2hp motor wired for
        220vac single <BR>
        > > phase.<BR>
        > > &gt;&nbsp; Most of these machines have 1 or 1.5 hp motors.<BR>
        > > &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; www.lathemaster.com<BR>
        > > &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; Richard<BR>
        > > &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, &quot;mechwerks&quot;
        spencx@a... wrote:<BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; I imagine a lot of you have done a bit of hunting for
        best <BR>
        > > prices on <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; a RF-45 type mill / drill. <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; I am looking to purchase a machine in the next couple
        of weeks <BR>
        > > and <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; was hoping so people could share their results for
        finding the <BR>
        > > best <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; price. I am looking for a RF-45 square column mill (or
        copy) <BR>
        > > with <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; single phase motor. Other than that, no other special
        whistles <BR>
        > > and <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; bells, just a basic mill.<BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; I appreciate any help some one may care to ofter.<BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; <BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; Steve,<BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; MechWerks Fabrication<BR>
        > > &gt; &gt; www.mechwerks.com Custom motorcycle parts for
        fabricators.<BR>
        > > <BR>
        > > <BR>
        > > <BR>
        > > </tt>
        > >
        > >
        > > <br>
        > >
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      • corey renner
        That article was very interesting. I must be a geek :) thanks Alan. c
        Message 3 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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          That article was very interesting. I must be a geek >:)

          thanks Alan.

          c

          On Mon, 10 Jan 2005 18:20:02 -0500, Alan E. Lutz <lutz48@...> wrote:
          >
          > You might want to read this...
          >
          > http://www.machinerylubrication.com/article_detail.asp?articleid=169&relatedbookgroup=Lubrication
          >
          > Alan
        • David J Hatzenbuhler
          The EP (extreme pressure) additives in hypoid gear oils have chlorine and sulphur compounds. When these combine with condensation (water) they make a weak acid
          Message 4 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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            The EP (extreme pressure) additives in hypoid gear oils have chlorine
            and sulphur compounds. When these combine with condensation (water)
            they make a weak acid that will eat aluminum and bronze parts. Just
            using gear oil will not cause the yellow metal parts in your machines
            to turn to powder. 8^o If you keep the shop temp relatively constant
            maybe a 1-2 degrees higher than outdoors or better yet a dry basement
            shop then condensation shouldn't be a problem.

            Dave

            --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "ronniebilt" <ronniebilt@y...>
            wrote:
            >
            >
            > If a bronze or brass gear is in your rotary table, hypoid gear oil
            > will eat at the gear, because of the sulfur in it. If you want to
            > use 90wt you have to use mineral gear oil. I would think to use a
            > machine oil like ISO AW 68 which is 20WT, which is a little thinner
            > than 90WT.
            >
            > Ronniebilt
            >
            > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Alan E. Lutz" <lutz48@a...>
            > wrote:
            > > Since we are discussing oil, what weight oil do you all think
            > should go into a rotary table? I recently purchased a 6" Phase II
            > Rotary Table. The manual says to fill the reservoir with oil, but
            > did not say whay kind. I would think 90 wt hypoid oil would be
            > appropriate, but am beginning to questions that?
            > >
            > > Alan Lutz
            > >
            > >
            > > ---- cncitall <ckeith1@n...> wrote:
            > > >
            > > > <html><body>
            > > >
            > > >
            > > >
            > > > <tt>
            > > > <BR>
            > > > I dumped in 90wt gear oil into my lathemaster now I'm wondering
            > if <BR>
            > > > that was correct. Maybe I'll give bob a call.<BR>
            > > > <BR>
            > > > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Richard"
            > odomrm@m... wrote:<BR>
            > > > > <BR>
            > > > > <BR>
            > > > > Steve,<BR>
            > > > > <BR>
            > > > > I've been very pleased with my Lathemaster ZAY7045FG in
            the
            > 18 <BR>
            > > > months<BR>
            > > > > I've had it.  It came with a 2hp motor wired for
            > 220vac single <BR>
            > > > phase.<BR>
            > > > >  Most of these machines have 1 or 1.5 hp motors.<BR>
            > > > > <BR>
            > > > > www.lathemaster.com<BR>
            > > > > <BR>
            > > > > Richard<BR>
            > > > > <BR>
            > > > > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "mechwerks"
            > spencx@a... wrote:<BR>
            > > > > > <BR>
            > > > > > I imagine a lot of you have done a bit of hunting for
            > best <BR>
            > > > prices on <BR>
            > > > > > a RF-45 type mill / drill. <BR>
            > > > > > I am looking to purchase a machine in the next couple
            > of weeks <BR>
            > > > and <BR>
            > > > > > was hoping so people could share their results for
            > finding the <BR>
            > > > best <BR>
            > > > > > price. I am looking for a RF-45 square column mill
            (or
            > copy) <BR>
            > > > with <BR>
            > > > > > single phase motor. Other than that, no other special
            > whistles <BR>
            > > > and <BR>
            > > > > > bells, just a basic mill.<BR>
            > > > > > I appreciate any help some one may care to ofter.<BR>
            > > > > > <BR>
            > > > > > Steve,<BR>
            > > > > > MechWerks Fabrication<BR>
            > > > > > www.mechwerks.com Custom motorcycle parts for
            > fabricators.<BR>
            > > > <BR>
            > > > <BR>
            > > > <BR>
            > > > </tt>
            > > >
            > > >
            > > > <br>
            > > >
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          • Jerry Kimberlin
            ... As far as I have been able to determine via net searches, this is totally false. What compounds did you find that do this and what oils are they added to?
            Message 5 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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              David J Hatzenbuhler wrote:

              >The EP (extreme pressure) additives in hypoid gear oils have chlorine
              >and sulphur compounds. When these combine with condensation (water)
              >they make a weak acid that will eat aluminum and bronze parts.
              >
              As far as I have been able to determine via net searches, this is
              totally false. What compounds did you find that do this and what oils
              are they added to? References?

              JerryK
            • ronniebilt
              The wiping action of a hypoid gear set is totally different than a worm and bow gear, hence different additive packages. Hypoids are not made from bronze
              Message 6 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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                The wiping action of a hypoid gear set is totally different than a
                worm and bow gear, hence different additive packages. Hypoids are
                not made from bronze because they would not stand up to the rubbing
                action of hypoid gearing. Hypoids have sulfur additives and worms
                gears do not because of the bronze comstruction.

                Ronniebilt


                -- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, Jerry Kimberlin <kimberln@c...>
                wrote:
                > David J Hatzenbuhler wrote:
                >
                > >The EP (extreme pressure) additives in hypoid gear oils have
                chlorine
                > >and sulphur compounds. When these combine with condensation
                (water)
                > >they make a weak acid that will eat aluminum and bronze parts.
                > >
                > As far as I have been able to determine via net searches, this is
                > totally false. What compounds did you find that do this and what
                oils
                > are they added to? References?
                >
                > JerryK
              • Tim
                ... and ... best ... The best price doesn t always buy you what you want. There are a handful of manufacturers that pretty much build the same mill to the
                Message 7 of 21 , Jan 10, 2005
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                  > > > I am looking to purchase a machine in the next couple of weeks
                  and
                  > > > was hoping so people could share their results for finding the
                  best
                  > > > price.

                  The best price doesn't always buy you what you want. There are a
                  handful of manufacturers that pretty much build the same mill to
                  the same set of plans in both China and Taiwan.

                  The importer controls the quality checks that are made on the
                  merchandise. Soime importers pay more more and get a higher
                  quality product, while other importers require little or no QC, and
                  largely get the rejects off the assembly line that the former
                  importer refused.

                  It is a case of you get what you pay for. If you want to save
                  money, you might get castings with a lot of bondo, or that are weak
                  because the metal didn't make the required heat to get the phase
                  transformation and the metal comes apart like sand when you
                  drill/tap it, that has out-of-spec tolerences, or the has cheaper
                  motors.

                  Bottom line: don't buy the cheapest mill; make sure that you get
                  alot of recommendations of quality companies.

                  My order of preference (listed by my perception of quality, not by
                  cheapest price results may vary, take with much salt):
                  1. Enco $1864
                  1. Lathemaster $1395
                  2. Penn Tool $1395
                  3. Wholesale Tool $1499
                  4. Grizzly $1495
                  5. ?????
                  6. ?????
                  7. HF $1100

                  Of course, often shipping on a 800 lb package can make or break the
                  deal too....

                  Note also of interest: the Sieg x3, which is a square dovetail
                  minimill which seems to be a pretty decent size; small enough to be
                  manageable (370 lbs vs the 750 lbs of the RF45), a bit cheaper
                  ($900), but still sturdy enough to be useful (unlike the next size
                  down square column minimills-which is the Sieg x2- that grizzly, HF,
                  etc. sell). Currently only imported by Lathemaster (yet strangely
                  not advertised on his website...).

                  http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=370
                  http://www.lathemaster.com/HEAVYDUTYMILLINGMACHINE%207045FG.htm
                  http://penntoolco.com/catalog/products/products.cfm?categoryID=4493
                  http://wttool.com/p/3006-0085
                  http://www.grizzly.com/products/item.cfm?itemnumber=G0519
                  http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?
                  itemnumber=42827
                • mechwerks
                  Thank you for the information below...this will help in my search! Maybe I should have been clearer in my request for best prices . I am torn between getting
                  Message 8 of 21 , Jan 11, 2005
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                    Thank you for the information below...this will help in my search!

                    Maybe I should have been clearer in my request for "best prices". I
                    am torn between getting a Rong Fu mill or going with a copy type
                    mill. I imagine most people on this forum get a mill and that is the
                    only thing they have to base any feedback on. Without having access
                    to several machines from different vendors it is hard to determine
                    what you may get from one to the other. In theory, a larger company
                    will want to import better machines to reduce the overhead costs of
                    dealing with unhappy customers. This doesn't alway play true since I
                    have looked at Harbor Freight lathes and mills and would not buy or
                    even suggest someone purchase these machines. The HF stuff has
                    outstanding prices but the quality can be seen without much
                    difficulty. I have been luck enough to have been around some well
                    made machinery and can tell the difference by just looking at it.
                    Problem it that this machine fits my current needs but I am in no
                    position to take a look at any of them. So, I have to go by what
                    vendors and current users have to say about the machines.

                    In recent quote requests, I have found copy mills for $1300 with free
                    freight and Rong Fu for $2300 also free freight. The big question is
                    how can you tell what is a good price? Is the RF worth the extra
                    $1000. I saw at least one CNC retrofitter site claiming the extra
                    expense was not worth the difference, but then claimed their version
                    had hardened gears suggesting there are differences.

                    Some units have the electrics mounted to the outside of the gear
                    head. Does this make for an obstacle when tilting the head? RF and
                    some copies have the switch in the gear head.


                    --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Tim" <tmarks11@y...> wrote:
                    >
                    > > > > I am looking to purchase a machine in the next couple of
                    weeks
                    > and
                    > > > > was hoping so people could share their results for finding
                    the
                    > best
                    > > > > price.
                    >
                    > The best price doesn't always buy you what you want. There are a
                    > handful of manufacturers that pretty much build the same mill to
                    > the same set of plans in both China and Taiwan.
                    >
                    > The importer controls the quality checks that are made on the
                    > merchandise. Soime importers pay more more and get a higher
                    > quality product, while other importers require little or no QC, and
                    > largely get the rejects off the assembly line that the former
                    > importer refused.
                    >
                    > It is a case of you get what you pay for. If you want to save
                    > money, you might get castings with a lot of bondo, or that are weak
                    > because the metal didn't make the required heat to get the phase
                    > transformation and the metal comes apart like sand when you
                    > drill/tap it, that has out-of-spec tolerences, or the has cheaper
                    > motors.
                    >
                    > Bottom line: don't buy the cheapest mill; make sure that you get
                    > alot of recommendations of quality companies.
                    >
                    > My order of preference (listed by my perception of quality, not by
                    > cheapest price results may vary, take with much salt):
                    > 1. Enco $1864
                    > 1. Lathemaster $1395
                    > 2. Penn Tool $1395
                    > 3. Wholesale Tool $1499
                    > 4. Grizzly $1495
                    > 5. ?????
                    > 6. ?????
                    > 7. HF $1100
                    >
                    > Of course, often shipping on a 800 lb package can make or break the
                    > deal too....
                    >
                    > Note also of interest: the Sieg x3, which is a square dovetail
                    > minimill which seems to be a pretty decent size; small enough to be
                    > manageable (370 lbs vs the 750 lbs of the RF45), a bit cheaper
                    > ($900), but still sturdy enough to be useful (unlike the next size
                    > down square column minimills-which is the Sieg x2- that grizzly,
                    HF,
                    > etc. sell). Currently only imported by Lathemaster (yet strangely
                    > not advertised on his website...).
                    >
                    > http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=370
                    > http://www.lathemaster.com/HEAVYDUTYMILLINGMACHINE%207045FG.htm
                    > http://penntoolco.com/catalog/products/products.cfm?categoryID=4493
                    > http://wttool.com/p/3006-0085
                    > http://www.grizzly.com/products/item.cfm?itemnumber=G0519
                    > http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?
                    > itemnumber=42827
                  • cncitall
                    I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc retrofit kit, here s my honest opinion as a consumer who looks for the best overall value. The
                    Message 9 of 21 , Jan 11, 2005
                    • 0 Attachment
                      I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc
                      retrofit kit, here's my honest opinion as a consumer who looks for
                      the best overall value.

                      The true RongFu 45 brand is the best quality, however if you plan to
                      retrofit with a cnc kit then you will be removing many of the parts
                      you paid that extra $1,000 for and replacing them with cnc parts so
                      why pay $1,000 for parts that will sit on a shelf. If you have no
                      plans to retrofit then I guess the RongFu 45 is the top choice.

                      Now lets say you have decided to buy one of the clones and save
                      $1,000 well some are better than others clearly. At the time I
                      purchased my lathemaster I contacted quite a few people who had
                      purchased various brands and the Lathemaster owners were the
                      happiest with their machine. For some of the other brands I was
                      hearing stuff like warped tables and failed motors etc. The
                      lathemaster was also the mill recommended by Industrial Hobbies.

                      Today there is a new mill in the market, Industrial Hobbies now
                      imports a mill built to their specs, that is noteworthy because they
                      have dealth with many different brands of these mills and so when
                      they specked out their mill they did so to avoid the issues common
                      to the other brands of mills. So call it a hybrid.

                      Now if anyone is expecting Hass like quality forget it, these are
                      econo imported mills and they will have issues. None of the issues I
                      had with my mill were show stoppers, some guys I spoke with had
                      issues like tables that were hopelessly warped out of specs or had
                      gone through 2 motors already, etc.

                      On my lathemaster Y was tight at the back and front, X was tight
                      left and right, Z was tight at the top and bottom. The ways looked
                      pretty from the factory but required lapping. Lathemaster needs to
                      get a brain on the way they attach the Z slide to the screw which
                      resulted in about .020 slop on Z (Industrial Hobbies has a fix for
                      this btw) and the electrical switches were cheap. The lamo freight
                      company broke a few parts off in shipping and I had a draw bar strip
                      out on me. Those were my issues.

                      Here's the important point, since its very likely that there will be
                      issues with any of these mills its important that you deal with
                      people who can address them. Bob at lathemaster shipped me
                      replacements for the broken parts and a new drawbar free of charge
                      and they shipped the same day I called because he stocks these parts
                      e.g. I didn't have to wait 6-8 weeks. Can Enco do that or HF? I
                      don't know but I would check with them before I ordered.

                      If you plan to retrofit with cnc I would personally recommend
                      Industrial Hobbies on the quality of their kit and more importantly
                      the quality of support and their knowledge of these mills. They know
                      the mills inside and out, the issues, the resolutions, also the cnc
                      related electronics and mechanicals. As a noob to cnc retrofitting I
                      had my share of questions and confusion and IH has gone above and
                      beyond many times for me.

                      Thats my two cents worth.
                    • Glenn N
                      I can t speak for anything but the mill I bought. I got the DM45 from Penn Tools. I am very pleased with the fit/finish and performance of the machine and
                      Message 10 of 21 , Jan 11, 2005
                      • 0 Attachment
                        I can't speak for anything but the mill I bought.  I got the DM45 from Penn Tools.  I am very pleased with the fit/finish and performance of the machine and the folk at Penn Tool were great to work with.  There were some bad points though.  First the add said 110/220 v.  This is true but to wire it for 110 You need to add wires from the switch to the motor and need the diagram they e-mailed me.  Not an issue for me as I went ahead and ran a 220 service.  Next was the depth stop on the quill.  It flops about something horrid.  Not an issue either unless you are going to mount a DRO to it, then you have to do some repair work to get things ridgid enough to make the DRO track.  The next one sort of tweeked me.  The table slots were advertised as 5/8" and the book said 5/8" in one place and 9/16" in another.  I ordered 5/8" clamp kits etc. based on the add and when I got the machine I found the slots are indeed 9/16".  Since 5/8" is more standard and the bottom of the slots were 1" as in a 5/8" slot I just milled the slots out to 5/8".  Was a bit trumatic to cut the shiney new table but it turned out really nice and I can use the standard 5/8" nuts now.  The next one is the dials on the lead screws.  They are 1/8" per rev instead of 1/10".  125 marks on the dial is not nearly as easy to deal with as 100.  The DRO I installed made that a non issue.
                        All tha aside .. the main things as in the motor and gears running quietly and the table moving smoothly and staying in register are all great. 
                         
                        Overall I am happy with it and would buy the same again .. unless I could find a Lathemaster or the new one from ... The CNC website without the CNC.  Lathemaster was out of stock when I was ready to order and the new one was not available yet or I probably would have gone that way.
                         
                        HTH
                        Glenn
                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: mechwerks
                        Sent: Tuesday, January 11, 2005 7:29 AM
                        Subject: [mill_drill] Re: Best Prices


                        Thank you for the information below...this will help in my search!

                        Maybe I should have been clearer in my request for "best prices". I
                        am torn between getting a Rong Fu mill or going with a copy type
                        mill. I imagine most people on this forum get a mill and that is the
                        only thing they have to base any feedback on. Without having access
                        to several machines from different vendors it is hard to determine
                        what you may get from one to the other. In theory, a larger company
                        will want to import better machines to reduce the overhead costs of
                        dealing with unhappy customers. This doesn't alway play true since I
                        have looked at Harbor Freight lathes and mills and would not buy or
                        even suggest someone purchase these machines. The HF stuff has
                        outstanding prices but the quality can be seen without much
                        difficulty. I have been luck enough to have been around some well
                        made machinery and can tell the difference by just looking at it.
                        Problem it that this machine fits my current needs but I am in no
                        position to take a look at any of them. So, I have to go by what
                        vendors and current users have to say about the machines.

                        In recent quote requests, I have found copy mills for $1300 with free
                        freight and Rong Fu for $2300 also free freight. The big question is
                        how can you tell what is a good price? Is the RF worth the extra
                        $1000. I saw at least one CNC retrofitter site claiming the extra
                        expense was not worth the difference, but then claimed their version
                        had hardened gears suggesting there are differences.

                        Some units have the electrics mounted to the outside of the gear
                        head. Does this make for an obstacle when tilting the head? RF and
                        some copies have the switch in the gear head.


                        --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "Tim" <tmarks11@y...> wrote:
                        >
                        > > > > I am looking to purchase a machine in the next couple of
                        weeks
                        > and
                        > > > > was hoping so people could share their results for finding
                        the
                        > best
                        > > > > price.
                        >
                        > The best price doesn't always buy you what you want.  There are a
                        > handful of manufacturers that pretty much build the same mill to
                        > the same set of plans in both China and Taiwan.
                        >
                        > The importer controls the quality checks that are made on the
                        > merchandise.  Soime importers pay more more and get a higher
                        > quality product, while other importers require little or no QC, and
                        > largely get the rejects off the assembly line that the former
                        > importer refused.
                        >
                        > It is a case of you get what you pay for.  If you want to save
                        > money, you might get castings with a lot of bondo, or that are weak
                        > because the metal didn't make the required heat to get the phase
                        > transformation and the metal comes apart like sand when you
                        > drill/tap it, that has out-of-spec tolerences, or the has cheaper
                        > motors.
                        >
                        > Bottom line: don't buy the cheapest mill; make sure that you get
                        > alot of recommendations of quality companies.
                        >
                        > My order of preference (listed by my perception of quality, not by
                        > cheapest price results may vary, take with much salt):
                        > 1. Enco $1864
                        > 1. Lathemaster $1395
                        > 2. Penn Tool $1395
                        > 3. Wholesale Tool $1499
                        > 4. Grizzly $1495
                        > 5. ?????
                        > 6. ?????
                        > 7. HF $1100
                        >
                        > Of course, often shipping on a 800 lb package can make or break the
                        > deal too....
                        >
                        > Note also of interest: the Sieg x3, which is a square dovetail
                        > minimill which seems to be a pretty decent size; small enough to be
                        > manageable (370 lbs vs the 750 lbs of the RF45), a bit cheaper
                        > ($900), but still sturdy enough to be useful (unlike the next size
                        > down square column minimills-which is the Sieg x2- that grizzly,
                        HF,
                        > etc. sell).  Currently only imported by Lathemaster (yet strangely
                        > not advertised on his website...).
                        >
                        > http://www.use-enco.com/CGI/INPDFF?PMPAGE=370
                        > http://www.lathemaster.com/HEAVYDUTYMILLINGMACHINE%207045FG.htm
                        > http://penntoolco.com/catalog/products/products.cfm?categoryID=4493
                        > http://wttool.com/p/3006-0085
                        > http://www.grizzly.com/products/item.cfm?itemnumber=G0519
                        > http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?
                        > itemnumber=42827





                      • Randy Wilson
                        ... Good post. I have a question for you. I have a round column floor stand drill press, and it has all the attendant advantages and disadvantages of a
                        Message 11 of 21 , Jan 11, 2005
                        • 0 Attachment
                          On Jan 11, 2005, at 12:13 PM, cncitall wrote:

                          >
                          >
                          > I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc
                          > retrofit kit, here's my honest opinion as a consumer who looks for
                          > the best overall value.

                          Good post. I have a question for you. I have a round column floor
                          stand drill press, and it has all the attendant advantages and
                          disadvantages of a machine whose parts and pieces are operating in
                          "loose association" with one another.

                          So, when I started thinking about a CNC mill, a round column seemed
                          like a bad idea - harder to keep everything aligned like you want it,
                          and on a machine where you are especially dependent on those
                          relationships since the computer can't notice or correct for any
                          errors. However, that was just an armchair opinion - not backed up by
                          anything more than my experience with my drill press (which I sometimes
                          mill with, but don't tell anybody).

                          So, in real life, how has this worked out for you? Any headaches?
                          Would you go with a round column if you could do it all over again?

                          TIA,
                          Randy
                        • cncitall
                          The square column mill wins big in several categories, they don t flex, you don t lose X and Y when adjusting Z, etc. And if you plan to retrofit one for cnc
                          Message 12 of 21 , Jan 11, 2005
                          • 0 Attachment
                            The square column mill wins big in several categories, they don't
                            flex, you don't lose X and Y when adjusting Z, etc. And if you plan
                            to retrofit one for cnc there are some serious advantages. I was
                            planning to buy a round column grizzly before I spoke with Aaron at
                            Industrial Hobbies. He gave me the pro's and con's but at the time I
                            thought, well maybe thats biased as his kit is based on the square
                            column mills. What he said was logical but just to be sure I then
                            did some searching on the web for others who had round column mills
                            and they reported the same issues Aaron mentioned.

                            I recommend you give him a call at Industrial Hobbies, he can
                            explain the pro's and con's far better than I could.

                            --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, Randy Wilson <yahooey@r...> wrote:
                            >
                            > On Jan 11, 2005, at 12:13 PM, cncitall wrote:
                            >
                            > >
                            > >
                            > > I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc
                            > > retrofit kit, here's my honest opinion as a consumer who looks
                            for
                            > > the best overall value.
                            >
                            > Good post. I have a question for you. I have a round column
                            floor
                            > stand drill press, and it has all the attendant advantages and
                            > disadvantages of a machine whose parts and pieces are operating in
                            > "loose association" with one another.
                            >
                            > So, when I started thinking about a CNC mill, a round column
                            seemed
                            > like a bad idea - harder to keep everything aligned like you want
                            it,
                            > and on a machine where you are especially dependent on those
                            > relationships since the computer can't notice or correct for any
                            > errors. However, that was just an armchair opinion - not backed
                            up by
                            > anything more than my experience with my drill press (which I
                            sometimes
                            > mill with, but don't tell anybody).
                            >
                            > So, in real life, how has this worked out for you? Any
                            headaches?
                            > Would you go with a round column if you could do it all over again?
                            >
                            > TIA,
                            > Randy
                          • mechwerks
                            Good lot of infor for 2 cents... I have heard the Lathemaster is a good machine, yet they have been out of stock for quite some time per their website. IH has
                            Message 13 of 21 , Jan 11, 2005
                            • 0 Attachment
                              Good lot of infor for 2 cents...
                              I have heard the Lathemaster is a good machine, yet they have been
                              out of stock for quite some time per their website. IH has not
                              replied to any inquiries.
                              I have also seen a couple of notes on the web that CNC'ing a RF
                              pitches a lot of parts you paid the extra $1000 for...
                              Since this is the lead screws, it can't account for the whole grand.
                              There seems to be a faction that believes the Taiwan machinery is
                              better in quality with the China stuff catching up fast. Question
                              is,would it be better to go with the better machine while the others
                              catch up?


                              --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "cncitall" <ckeith1@n...> wrote:
                              >
                              > I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc
                              > retrofit kit, here's my honest opinion as a consumer who looks for
                              > the best overall value.
                              >
                              > The true RongFu 45 brand is the best quality, however if you plan
                              to
                              > retrofit with a cnc kit then you will be removing many of the parts
                              > you paid that extra $1,000 for and replacing them with cnc parts so
                              > why pay $1,000 for parts that will sit on a shelf. If you have no
                              > plans to retrofit then I guess the RongFu 45 is the top choice.
                              >
                              > Now lets say you have decided to buy one of the clones and save
                              > $1,000 well some are better than others clearly. At the time I
                              > purchased my lathemaster I contacted quite a few people who had
                              > purchased various brands and the Lathemaster owners were the
                              > happiest with their machine. For some of the other brands I was
                              > hearing stuff like warped tables and failed motors etc. The
                              > lathemaster was also the mill recommended by Industrial Hobbies.
                              >
                              > Today there is a new mill in the market, Industrial Hobbies now
                              > imports a mill built to their specs, that is noteworthy because
                              they
                              > have dealth with many different brands of these mills and so when
                              > they specked out their mill they did so to avoid the issues common
                              > to the other brands of mills. So call it a hybrid.
                              >
                              > Now if anyone is expecting Hass like quality forget it, these are
                              > econo imported mills and they will have issues. None of the issues
                              I
                              > had with my mill were show stoppers, some guys I spoke with had
                              > issues like tables that were hopelessly warped out of specs or had
                              > gone through 2 motors already, etc.
                              >
                              > On my lathemaster Y was tight at the back and front, X was tight
                              > left and right, Z was tight at the top and bottom. The ways looked
                              > pretty from the factory but required lapping. Lathemaster needs to
                              > get a brain on the way they attach the Z slide to the screw which
                              > resulted in about .020 slop on Z (Industrial Hobbies has a fix for
                              > this btw) and the electrical switches were cheap. The lamo freight
                              > company broke a few parts off in shipping and I had a draw bar
                              strip
                              > out on me. Those were my issues.
                              >
                              > Here's the important point, since its very likely that there will
                              be
                              > issues with any of these mills its important that you deal with
                              > people who can address them. Bob at lathemaster shipped me
                              > replacements for the broken parts and a new drawbar free of charge
                              > and they shipped the same day I called because he stocks these
                              parts
                              > e.g. I didn't have to wait 6-8 weeks. Can Enco do that or HF? I
                              > don't know but I would check with them before I ordered.
                              >
                              > If you plan to retrofit with cnc I would personally recommend
                              > Industrial Hobbies on the quality of their kit and more importantly
                              > the quality of support and their knowledge of these mills. They
                              know
                              > the mills inside and out, the issues, the resolutions, also the cnc
                              > related electronics and mechanicals. As a noob to cnc retrofitting
                              I
                              > had my share of questions and confusion and IH has gone above and
                              > beyond many times for me.
                              >
                              > Thats my two cents worth.
                            • cncitall
                              The past few weeks IH has been trying to prepare for the Cabin Fever show in PA this weekend, they also took some time off over the holidays, my guess is they
                              Message 14 of 21 , Jan 12, 2005
                              • 0 Attachment
                                The past few weeks IH has been trying to prepare for the Cabin Fever
                                show in PA this weekend, they also took some time off over the
                                holidays, my guess is they have their hands full at the moment with
                                the show and the backlog. They are normally quite responsive, try
                                giving them a call mid to late next week after the show.

                                Here's what you will pitch to the curb in a cnc retrofit...3 screws,
                                3 nuts, X, Y handwheels, bearings, and mounts, Z hand crank, gears,
                                side mounting block, top mounting block, and bearings top and bottom.

                                So you see there are actually quite a few components and those
                                components are generally higher in quality than the china knock-
                                offs. For example the RongFu has a higher quality rack and pinon
                                system for cranking Z up and down.

                                The only parts retained are the bare castings, gibs, motor, and
                                head. IH did say the quality of the RongFu castins is a bit better
                                but for $1,000 I thought I could buy a US motor and probably and
                                entire spare geared head. ;-)

                                --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "mechwerks" <spencx@a...> wrote:
                                >
                                > Good lot of infor for 2 cents...
                                > I have heard the Lathemaster is a good machine, yet they have been
                                > out of stock for quite some time per their website. IH has not
                                > replied to any inquiries.
                                > I have also seen a couple of notes on the web that CNC'ing a RF
                                > pitches a lot of parts you paid the extra $1000 for...
                                > Since this is the lead screws, it can't account for the whole
                                grand.
                                > There seems to be a faction that believes the Taiwan machinery is
                                > better in quality with the China stuff catching up fast. Question
                                > is,would it be better to go with the better machine while the
                                others
                                > catch up?
                                >
                                >
                                > --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, "cncitall" <ckeith1@n...> wrote:
                                > >
                                > > I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc
                                > > retrofit kit, here's my honest opinion as a consumer who looks
                                for
                                > > the best overall value.
                                > >
                                > > The true RongFu 45 brand is the best quality, however if you
                                plan
                                > to
                                > > retrofit with a cnc kit then you will be removing many of the
                                parts
                                > > you paid that extra $1,000 for and replacing them with cnc parts
                                so
                                > > why pay $1,000 for parts that will sit on a shelf. If you have
                                no
                                > > plans to retrofit then I guess the RongFu 45 is the top choice.
                                > >
                                > > Now lets say you have decided to buy one of the clones and save
                                > > $1,000 well some are better than others clearly. At the time I
                                > > purchased my lathemaster I contacted quite a few people who had
                                > > purchased various brands and the Lathemaster owners were the
                                > > happiest with their machine. For some of the other brands I was
                                > > hearing stuff like warped tables and failed motors etc. The
                                > > lathemaster was also the mill recommended by Industrial Hobbies.
                                > >
                                > > Today there is a new mill in the market, Industrial Hobbies now
                                > > imports a mill built to their specs, that is noteworthy because
                                > they
                                > > have dealth with many different brands of these mills and so
                                when
                                > > they specked out their mill they did so to avoid the issues
                                common
                                > > to the other brands of mills. So call it a hybrid.
                                > >
                                > > Now if anyone is expecting Hass like quality forget it, these
                                are
                                > > econo imported mills and they will have issues. None of the
                                issues
                                > I
                                > > had with my mill were show stoppers, some guys I spoke with had
                                > > issues like tables that were hopelessly warped out of specs or
                                had
                                > > gone through 2 motors already, etc.
                                > >
                                > > On my lathemaster Y was tight at the back and front, X was tight
                                > > left and right, Z was tight at the top and bottom. The ways
                                looked
                                > > pretty from the factory but required lapping. Lathemaster needs
                                to
                                > > get a brain on the way they attach the Z slide to the screw
                                which
                                > > resulted in about .020 slop on Z (Industrial Hobbies has a fix
                                for
                                > > this btw) and the electrical switches were cheap. The lamo
                                freight
                                > > company broke a few parts off in shipping and I had a draw bar
                                > strip
                                > > out on me. Those were my issues.
                                > >
                                > > Here's the important point, since its very likely that there
                                will
                                > be
                                > > issues with any of these mills its important that you deal with
                                > > people who can address them. Bob at lathemaster shipped me
                                > > replacements for the broken parts and a new drawbar free of
                                charge
                                > > and they shipped the same day I called because he stocks these
                                > parts
                                > > e.g. I didn't have to wait 6-8 weeks. Can Enco do that or HF? I
                                > > don't know but I would check with them before I ordered.
                                > >
                                > > If you plan to retrofit with cnc I would personally recommend
                                > > Industrial Hobbies on the quality of their kit and more
                                importantly
                                > > the quality of support and their knowledge of these mills. They
                                > know
                                > > the mills inside and out, the issues, the resolutions, also the
                                cnc
                                > > related electronics and mechanicals. As a noob to cnc
                                retrofitting
                                > I
                                > > had my share of questions and confusion and IH has gone above
                                and
                                > > beyond many times for me.
                                > >
                                > > Thats my two cents worth.
                              • cncitall
                                Some follow-up thoughts on this...I cannot imagine what a hassle it would be changing tools with a round column cnc mill where you only have 3 inches or so of
                                Message 15 of 21 , Jan 12, 2005
                                • 0 Attachment
                                  Some follow-up thoughts on this...I cannot imagine what a hassle it
                                  would be changing tools with a round column cnc mill where you only
                                  have 3 inches or so of Z travel. I'd have to raise the head up a
                                  round column just to load the drill chuck then lower it again to use
                                  an end mill and of course dial it back in again for X and Y. Thats
                                  whats nice about the square column cnc mill, I just jog up 12 inches
                                  or more and I have plenty of elbow room. Also what about setup time?
                                  At present I jog the head to the top of the column (a few seconds)
                                  toss some stock onto my fixture, set the tool height and I'm off and
                                  running. Note I have so much Z clearance that I can get my cordless
                                  drill in there under the head to drive the fixture bolts in/out, its
                                  quick. Thats one of the complaints about the round column mills I
                                  remember reading. They found ways to "work around" these issues but
                                  my time is limited, I'd rather not waste it working around
                                  limitations of my tools.

                                  --- In mill_drill@yahoogroups.com, Randy Wilson <yahooey@r...> wrote:
                                  >
                                  > On Jan 11, 2005, at 12:13 PM, cncitall wrote:
                                  >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > I own a Lathemaster RF45 clone with a Industrial Hobbies cnc
                                  > > retrofit kit, here's my honest opinion as a consumer who looks
                                  for
                                  > > the best overall value.
                                  >
                                  > Good post. I have a question for you. I have a round column
                                  floor
                                  > stand drill press, and it has all the attendant advantages and
                                  > disadvantages of a machine whose parts and pieces are operating in
                                  > "loose association" with one another.
                                  >
                                  > So, when I started thinking about a CNC mill, a round column
                                  seemed
                                  > like a bad idea - harder to keep everything aligned like you want
                                  it,
                                  > and on a machine where you are especially dependent on those
                                  > relationships since the computer can't notice or correct for any
                                  > errors. However, that was just an armchair opinion - not backed
                                  up by
                                  > anything more than my experience with my drill press (which I
                                  sometimes
                                  > mill with, but don't tell anybody).
                                  >
                                  > So, in real life, how has this worked out for you? Any
                                  headaches?
                                  > Would you go with a round column if you could do it all over again?
                                  >
                                  > TIA,
                                  > Randy
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