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Why not a Taig workshop?

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  • valkcapt
    I m a newbie to machining, and am dithering over what to do. I started out thinking I would buy a Taig mill and lathe. Then as I read different posts in
    Message 1 of 42 , Mar 24, 2013
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      I'm a newbie to machining, and am dithering over what to do. I started out thinking I would buy a Taig mill and lathe. Then as I read different posts in different sites, I decided I needed a bigger setup. The common theme was "get the biggest you can get, because you'll soon outgrow your machines." So I started looking at various Asian Mini-lathes and mills, thinking I would buy one, and then the other, until I finally decided on Lathemaster 9x30 and a Lathemaster LM25L, and also looked at band saws and belt sanders, because several sites said I needed those. Supposedly the Lathemaster is higher quality and bigger than some of the other Asian machines I considered. Then I thought about CNC because I love computers, but became discouraged over all the comments about needing to learn manual machining first. Then I saw all the comments saying I should hold out for a used Bridgeport because all those Asian imports are crap. Then I looked at my garage and the limited space I have and thought, where are you going put all that stuff? And you can hardly drill a decent hole in wood -- what if you have absolutely no aptitude in machining, and what are you planning on making anyway? So I started downsizing my dreams of being a machinist to the point where I am back at Taig again. I had to relook at my goals.

      First, I want to learn how to make things with my own hands. Although I have used things that other people have made, I've never made anything significant involving craftsmanship. I've spent over 10 years flying jets as a naval aviator and as a Learjet Captain, 10 years as an Aerospace engineer involved with aircraft, Space Shuttle, and satellite projects, and 20 years as a lawyer, so I'm not afraid of trying something new. But I admire those of you that make practical or beautiful things out of scraps of metal, and I want to be just like you. But I don't know how passionate I will be until I do it. I know I am tired of killing trees and inking paper. Historically, when I start a hobby, I run with it. But that is only if I love it. Here, I just imagine I would love it, although it is a much greater depth of imagination that my desire to play the piano, which will never happen.

      Second, I want to make models and toys for grandkids as a means of learning machining skills.

      Third, I don't know where I am going from there. I would like to be a hobby gunsmith so I might put my hopefully acquired machining skills to work there. Or I might want to make knives, or pens, or chessmen or whatever. I see lots of project ideas and even specializations that look like fun, but who knows.

      So, I'm back at Taig. I'm thinking that I will either decide Taig is big enough or it isn't. And when it isn't, I can buy a bigger set up then. And since this is forum with a lot of Taig users, I thought I'd ask this question. Will I regret setting up shop with the Taig to start with, and if so, why? And if you are a Taig user that found yourself size-limited, how long did that take, and do you regret starting at the micro level? And finally, if you were trying to just learn basic machining skills, what projects would you consider starting with?

      If you read this far, thank you. I look forward to reading your comments.
    • Steve Wan
      Hi Yi Yao Thanks for the info, I read about the white Babbitt metal bearings (tin-based). They were cast direct into the spindle. Steve Wan
      Message 42 of 42 , Oct 16, 2013
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        Hi Yi Yao

        Thanks for the info, I read about the white Babbitt metal bearings (tin-based).
        They were cast direct into the spindle.

        Steve Wan

        On 10/16/13, Yi Yao <yi@...> wrote:
        > -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
        > Hash: SHA1
        >
        > Hi Steve,
        >
        > Mine has white Babbitt metal bearings which is older than the bronze
        > bearing type. To be honest, there is significantly more maintenance
        > then sealed bearings or a spindle with a one shot oiler. Supposedly,
        > there is less TIR, but I haven't been able to measure the TIR on
        > products from my Taig or Sherline anyway. It does put a huge
        > limitation on the spindle speeds which is annoying if you are turning
        > diameters less than 1"/25mm.
        >
        > As for adjusting the ways, its quite similar to a Taig with gibs and
        > set screws. Pretty effective and easy to do.
        >
        > Best regards,
        > Yi
        >
        >
        > On 16/10/13 03:00 AM, Steve Wan wrote:
        >>
        >>
        >> Hi Tony
        >>
        >> Since you have a Myford, care to tell us more of the Bronze
        >> bearing and ways to adjust the play? Which is better? Commercial
        >> ones with roller bearings or the traditional sleeve bearings for
        >> home workshop.
        >>
        >> Steve Wan
        >>
        >> On 10/16/13, Tony Jeffree <tony@...> wrote:
        >>> Don -
        >>>
        >>> As a Myford owner, I would agree with you that they are good
        >>> machines, but they have their limitations too. The cross-slide
        >>> really isn't rigid enough for a machine of that size, and even
        >>> the newer "large bore" Myfords don't compete with the Eastern
        >>> imports with regard to the size of the spindle bore. The Boxford
        >>> (an improved version of the South Bend) is actually a better
        >>> machine in that class IMHO.
        >>>
        >>> Regards, Tony
        >>>
        >>>
        >>> On 16 October 2013 04:43, Don Rogers <Don@...>
        >>> wrote:
        >>>
        >>>> The Myford lathes although expensive here in the US, are with
        >>>> out a doubt the lathe I would chose, IF I could afford one. I
        >>>> had the pleasure a couple years back of getting my hands on
        >>>> one. The best design, work envelope and ability to handle line
        >>>> boring, along with a number of "attachments" IE the dividing
        >>>> head attachment for the spindle for one is beyond the ability
        >>>> of any lathe I've ever seen, and I've been looking at them for
        >>>> over 50 years now. Comparing a Myford to a Taig, Sherline,
        >>>> Atlas, South Bend, or any of the other home shop machines is
        >>>> like comparing a Ferrari to a VW bug. No comparison at all.
        >>>> Sure wish I could have scored the one that got away.
        >>>>
        >>>> Don
        >>>>
        >>>>
        >>>>
        >>>> -----Original Message----- From: taigtools@yahoogroups.com
        >>>> [mailto:taigtools@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Steve Wan Sent:
        >>>> Tuesday, October 15, 2013 7:58 PM To:
        >>>> taigtools@yahoogroups.com Subject: Re: [taigtools] RE: Why not
        >>>> a Taig workshop?
        >>>>
        >>>> Hi Yi Yao
        >>>>
        >>>> Sherline machines are capable of many jobs, small to medium
        >>>> range if most of the work are aluminium. Moreover, it's
        >>>> designed as such that it could upgrade/modify easily like lego.
        >>>> I think you're going in a circle trying out which machines suit
        >>>> you best. Myford ML7 lathe has ceased production, spares are
        >>>> expensive!
        >>>>
        >>>> CNC is good for profile or mass production. Manual machining
        >>>> is basically for single job and touchup. Better to look into
        >>>> your area of work than machine type.
        >>>>
        >>>> Steve Wan
        >>>>
        >>>> On 10/16/13, Jeffrey Birt <birt_j@...> wrote:
        >>>>> Thanks for the kind words Bill. The real trick to a good CNC
        >>>>> system is to match the components to the job at hand, for
        >>>>> example motors that are too large are as bad as motors that
        >>>>> are too small and not enough gear
        >>>> reduction
        >>>>> (really low pitch lead screws) is as bad as too much.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Since the Taig mill has 20TPI leadscrews a smaller motor with
        >>>>> higher acceleration and maximum velocity will perform better
        >>>>> than a larger
        >>>> motor. A
        >>>>> motor in the size range of the 166oz-in motors I package with
        >>>>> my STDR-4C kits:
        >>>>> http://www.soigeneris.com/stdr_4c-details.aspx are an
        >>>>> excellent
        >>>> match
        >>>>> for the Taig. If you add the line filter/switch box you get
        >>>>> automatic
        >>>> on/off
        >>>>> control of the spindle motor as well. The combination of the
        >>>>> G540 drive
        >>>> from
        >>>>> Gecko and the SmoothStepper from Warp9 make for a powerful
        >>>>> team.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> As others have mentioned you can build a similar system
        >>>>> yourself and
        >>>> modify
        >>>>> it to your heart's content. Most of the parts used for the
        >>>>> STDR-4C are available separately from my website as well.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> In addition to not falling for the bigger stepper motors are
        >>>>> better trap also be wary of the 12A power supply for the G540
        >>>>> trap. The G540 has an internal 7A very fast blowing fuse. It
        >>>>> will never, never, draw more than
        >>>> 7A.
        >>>>> In fact it will not get close to 7A in normal operation. I
        >>>>> think the confusion comes from how power supplies are rated.
        >>>>> A switch type power supply (more modern type) has a regulated
        >>>>> output voltage and is rated to
        >>>> put
        >>>>> out its maximum current at 100% duty cycle (i.e. it will put
        >>>>> out that
        >>>> amount
        >>>>> of current from no until the cows some home). There are also
        >>>>> simpler 'linear-unregulated' power supplies which are
        >>>>> basically a big
        >>>> transformer,
        >>>>> big capacitor and a bridge rectifier. With an unregulated
        >>>>> supply the more current you draw out of it the lower the
        >>>>> output voltage drops. So for a
        >>>> 48V
        >>>>> 7A unregulated supply the output voltage might only be 40V at
        >>>>> a 7A
        >>>> current
        >>>>> draw. To keep the output voltage up where it needs to be at
        >>>>> full load it
        >>>> is
        >>>>> common to oversize an unregulated supply by 25% or so.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> There are some exceptions to the above of course. There are
        >>>>> some switch
        >>>> type
        >>>>> supplies that are designed to output a much higher current
        >>>>> for a brief period of time, on these types of supplies you
        >>>>> will see this as a maximum continuous current and maximum
        >>>>> surge current (in A and number of seconds
        >>>> it
        >>>>> can be sustained). Unregulated supplies are also often not
        >>>>> specified at their 100% duty cycle, you will see this very
        >>>>> commonly on things like welding power supplies, it will say
        >>>>> 200A @15% duty cycle. This means it
        >>>> can
        >>>>> supply 200A for only 1.5minutes out of a ten minute period.
        >>>>> The larger
        >>>> point
        >>>>> is be careful of what your buying, don't buy a huge power
        >>>>> supply just because that is what is being offered for sale
        >>>>> and make sure the power supply is specified the way you
        >>>>> expect.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Jeff Birt
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Soigeneris.com
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> From: taigtools@yahoogroups.com
        >>>>> [mailto:taigtools@yahoogroups.com] On
        >>>> Behalf
        >>>>> Of bbuck505@... Sent: Tuesday, October 15, 2013 9:24
        >>>>> AM To: taigtools@yahoogroups.com Subject: [taigtools] RE: Why
        >>>>> not a Taig workshop?
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Valkcapt
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> I highly recommend Jeff Birts's STDR-4C controller with his
        >>>>> stepper motor recommendations. This is the setup that I have
        >>>>> and it's been great. I bought mine with the Smoothstepper,
        >>>>> primarily so I could use a laptop. I pretty much mill steel
        >>>>> exclusively (12L14, 1018) and it works very well,
        >>>>> particularly with smaller endmills. Jeff is a terrific vendor
        >>>>> and
        >>>> answered
        >>>>> many questions prior to purchase. I have never regretted
        >>>>> purchasing the Taig and his controller. I also highly
        >>>>> recommend Cambam for your cam software (also purchased from
        >>>>> Jeff).
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Bill
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> ---In taigtools@yahoogroups.com, <valkcapt@...> wrote:
        >>>>>
        >>>>> @jeff birt: I bought the CNC ready Taig mill as you suggest,
        >>>>> and as you may have seen on a previous post, I am preparing
        >>>>> to upgrade to CNC. I
        >>>> would
        >>>>> like to buy the parts now, so I can start the upgrade at any
        >>>>> time.
        >>>> However,
        >>>>> I will probably wait until after I enroll in the CNC course
        >>>>> at the local junior college. However, I don't know what I
        >>>>> need or what the tradeoffs
        >>>> are
        >>>>> (e.g., servo vs. stepper motors; controller model; etc.). I'm
        >>>>> starting
        >>>> to
        >>>>> learn, but I am a long way from being confident. Any
        >>>>> suggestions on how
        >>>> to
        >>>>> go about the transition?
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> ---In taigtools@yahoogroups.com, <birt_j@...> wrote:
        >>>>>
        >>>>> When talking with someone first getting started one of the
        >>>>> first
        >>>> questions
        >>>>> I ask is "What sort of things will you be making?". It does
        >>>>> not matter how great a machine tool is if it is not suited
        >>>>> for the job at hand. The question of the size of the tool is
        >>>>> an appropriate one. Just as with any tool, say a hammer, one
        >>>>> size does not fit all tasks. The two most used hammers in my
        >>>>> tool box are a 16oz claw hammer and 20oz ball peen. I also
        >>>>> own a sledge hammer which is very useful on occasion but
        >>>>> having a BFH does
        >>>> not
        >>>>> replace my need for the smaller hammers, i.e. I'm not going
        >>>>> to do any framing with a 10# sledge hammer.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> For most guys wanting to get into the 'hobbyist' sized things
        >>>>> the Taig is
        >>>> a
        >>>>> good size. It has a decent work envelope and is not too
        >>>>> large. It is also made very well, as others have said many of
        >>>>> the import machines are more like a kit as you have to
        >>>>> rebuild the whole thing to makes something that works decent.
        >>>>> Even with larger machines at my disposal the Taig is still
        >>>>> what I turn too most. Small jobs are hard to do on big, heavy
        >>>>> machines.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> So, if the Taig will meet your work envelope requirements it
        >>>>> comes down
        >>>> to
        >>>>> which machine(s) to get. On the lathe side of things I would
        >>>> wholeheartedly
        >>>>> recommend getting the power feed option. The accessories you
        >>>>> purchase
        >>>> will
        >>>>> in large part be determined by what sort of work you will
        >>>>> want to do. The drilling tail stock, drill chuck, bit set,
        >>>>> etc are commonly used things that al universally useful. On
        >>>>> the mill, since you want to use it manually at first I would
        >>>>> suggest getting the CNC Ready mill and adding hand cranks.
        >>>>> This gives you the stepper couplers and better spindle motor
        >>>>> so when you are ready to go to CNC you just need to get a
        >>>>> controller package. In the long run you will save money over
        >>>>> buying the CNC upgrade parts down the road.
        >>>> I
        >>>>> have had many customers go this route.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> I hope that is of some help,
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Jeff Birt
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Soigeneris.com
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> From: taigtools@yahoogroups.com
        >>>>> [mailto:taigtools@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of valkcapt
        >>>>> Sent: Sunday, March 24, 2013 10:27 PM To:
        >>>>> taigtools@yahoogroups.com Subject: [taigtools] Why not a Taig
        >>>>> workshop?
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> I'm a newbie to machining, and am dithering over what to do.
        >>>>> I started
        >>>> out
        >>>>> thinking I would buy a Taig mill and lathe. Then as I read
        >>>>> different
        >>>> posts
        >>>>> in different sites, I decided I needed a bigger setup. The
        >>>>> common theme
        >>>> was
        >>>>> "get the biggest you can get, because you'll soon outgrow
        >>>>> your machines." So I started looking at various Asian
        >>>>> Mini-lathes and mills, thinking I
        >>>> would
        >>>>> buy one, and then the other, until I finally decided on
        >>>>> Lathemaster 9x30 and a Lathemaster LM25L, and also looked at
        >>>>> band saws and belt sanders,
        >>>> because
        >>>>> several sites said I needed those. Supposedly the Lathemaster
        >>>>> is higher quality and bigger than some of the other Asian
        >>>>> machines I considered.
        >>>> Then
        >>>>> I thought about CNC because I love computers, but became
        >>>>> discouraged over all the comments about needing to learn
        >>>>> manual machining first. Then I
        >>>> saw
        >>>>> all the comments saying I should hold out for a used
        >>>>> Bridgeport because
        >>>> all
        >>>>> those Asian imports are crap. Then I looked at my garage and
        >>>>> the limited space I have and thought, where are you going put
        >>>>> all that stuff? And you can hardly drill a decent hole in
        >>>>> wood -- what if you have absolutely no aptitude in machining,
        >>>>> and what are you planning on making anyway? So I started
        >>>>> downsizing my dreams of being a machinist to the point where
        >>>>> I am back at Taig again. I had to relook at my goals.
        >>>>>
        >>>>> First, I want to learn how to make things with my own hands.
        >>>>> Although I have used things that other people have made, I've
        >>>>> never made anything significant involving craftsmanship. I've
        >>>>> spent over 10 years flying jets as a naval aviator and as a
        >>>>> Learjet Captain, 10 years as an Aerospace
        >>>> engineer
        >>>>> involved with aircraft, Space Shuttle, and satellite
        >>>>> projects, and 20
        >>>> years
        >>>>> as a lawyer, so I'm not afraid of trying something new. But I
        >>>>> admire
        >>>> those
        >>>>> of you that make practical or beautiful things out of scraps
        >>>>> of metal,
        >>>> and
        >>>>> I want to be just like you. But I don't know how passionate I
        >>>>> will be until
        >>>> I
        >>>>> do it. I know I am tired of killing trees and inking paper.
        >>>>> Historically, when I start a hobby, I run with it. But that
        >>>>> is only if I love it. Here,
        >>>> I
        >>>>> just imagine I would love it, although it is a much greater
        >>>>> depth of imagination that my desire to play the piano, which
        >>>>> will never happen.
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Second, I want to make models and toys for grandkids as a
        >>>>> means of
        >>>> learning
        >>>>> machining skills.
        >>>>>
        >>>>> Third, I don't know where I am going from there. I would like
        >>>>> to be a
        >>>> hobby
        >>>>> gunsmith so I might put my hopefully acquired machining
        >>>>> skills to work there. Or I might want to make knives, or
        >>>>> pens, or chessmen or whatever.
        >>>> I
        >>>>> see lots of project ideas and even specializations that look
        >>>>> like fun,
        >>>> but
        >>>>> who knows.
        >>>>>
        >>>>> So, I'm back at Taig. I'm thinking that I will either decide
        >>>>> Taig is big enough or it isn't. And when it isn't, I can buy
        >>>>> a bigger set up then.
        >>>> And
        >>>>> since this is forum with a lot of Taig users, I thought I'd
        >>>>> ask this question. Will I regret setting up shop with the
        >>>>> Taig to start with, and
        >>>> if
        >>>>> so, why? And if you are a Taig user that found yourself
        >>>>> size-limited, how long did that take, and do you regret
        >>>>> starting at the micro level? And finally, if you were trying
        >>>>> to just learn basic machining skills, what projects would you
        >>>>> consider starting with?
        >>>>>
        >>>>> If you read this far, thank you. I look forward to reading
        >>>>> your comments.
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >>>>>
        >>>>>
        >>>>
        >>>>
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        >>>>
        >>>>
        >>>>
        >>>>
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        >>>>
        >>>>
        >>>
        >>
        >>
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