August 27, 2010
October 11, 2010
From what I can see from the product description the g1007 has only a slightly larger table 8" x 28-3/4 to 9-1/2" x 32 and has a power feed instead of a a table, also the collars are graduated to 0.001 in stead of 0.002. As good as those features are I don't think its worth the extra $345, perhaps the best choice is the g1006, it is only 4% more then the g0705 and appears to have same components as the g1007 only it doesn't have a power feed, but you can operate the machine by hand for a while then later by a cheeper power feed on ebay. I would advice that you stay a way from round column mils, because its impossible to keep the head it in position as it is raised and lowered. this is crucial when drilling and taping, where as with a mill with a knee or dovetail column you can easily center drill close the the work then raise to drill and raise again for the tap handle remanning perfectly centered. Further more you don't have a any graduations on the z axis, so you must move the head to a position some what close to what is desired then measurer the hight and move the quill. I would recommend getting either the x3, sx3, or the g3102.
July 23, 2010
Bob, I have to agree with everything that Alexander said. I've used a round column mill, and it was always a struggle to set up jobs correctly. With the head lowered, I couldn't easily clamp jobs in place, and raising it threw everything out of alignment. If you have the head up enough to set things up, you will need to have the quill extended quite far to do the actual cutting or drilling, and that reduces rigidity considerably. Given the prices on the 0705 and the 1007, I'd guess that the 3102 is more than you wanted to spend. I have a G0704 (BF-20 clone), which has a square, dovetailed column, R8 spindle, and I love it. It also has a really large table travel, and comes with its own stand. The whole package is $950, and I would choose that mill again if I were to start over again. Once nice feature is that it is a 4-axis mill, not just 3, since the head can be tipped 90 degrees to the side. The machine also is easily disassembled into 4 pieces that can be moved around by a single person (head, column, table, and base).
I'm very, very happy with this machine.
October 29, 2010
I would agree that the G0704 isn't a bad mill for the money, however, you may also want to explore a Rong Fu or Clone such as a ZX45. The larger capacity is GREATLY appreciated. You'll always find that you'll keep wanting bigger and better, but you'll never wish you had LESS.
Check out this link to Hoss Machine's website… It's AMAZING how much this guy has on his site… He had BOTH a G0704 and a ZX45.
(Rong Fu Clone page…)
(home page with LINK to G0704 page)
July 23, 2010
I'm with ya, Glenn. For me, the G0704 was the biggest that I could accomodate. I still rent, and will have to move again when my postdoc ends, so the ability to break my shop down and relocate it (likely to the other side of Canada...) is a must. The fact that I can break the 0704 down on my own and move the parts on my own was important for me. I worked at BusyBee for a little while in Edmonton, and they have a very similar machine, the CT129, that I got to inspect fairly thoroughly at the time, and was impressed by it. The Grizzly model, which is essentially the same machine has a bigger table, greater travel and an R8 spindle, and costs less, so that sold it for me :)
August 27, 2010
October 11, 2010
You should serious conceder a knee mill, a machinist will value a knee mill the same way an offroader will value four wheel drive. Having the table rise instead of the head assembly, allows for grater rigidity, accuracy and addition head tilting options. The primary advantage is not having z -axis backlash, of course you still have to compensate a few thousands of an inch on the dial, but you won't have any lifting of the head. What mean by head lifting is on a dovetail mill and drill when the head is at rest the head will fall to the bottom of the play in the screw, and when the head is not locked and heavy plunge cuts or fly cuts are used then the head will lift to the top of the allowed play. There by ruining your accuracy. A knee mill on the other hand has the table resting on the top of the screw and any milling action will force downwards on the table leaving no rome for play. You may have heard of a bed mills, they have the same configuration as a cheap mill and drill, but they getaway with this because of the great mass of the head, the machine can not conjure up enough cutting force to lift it. CNC mills use ball screws to prevent movement. The second advantage is the additional axis of rotation of the head a BF Series mill has only the had swivel while a bridgeport can rotate on a turret, extent on a ram, tilt forwards and back and swivel. I will admit that maybe 95% of the operations you preform will involve the spindle perfectly vertical but what do you do when you need to have the head tilted, fixtures and jigs will only take you so far. I know that knee mills are expensive but you will have no regrets buying a bridgeport 9"x42" except for when the loan shark comes to your door.
July 23, 2010
Thanks guys. Now I'm more confused. Please tell me more.
Bob, to make a long story short, compared to a lathe, there are a relatively small number of operations that you perform with a mill. With a lathe, you can turn, face, bore, thread, just to name a few. For the most part, with a mill, most operations consist of moving a spinning cutter across the face of a workpiece. The key to a mill's versatility is the many different ways in which you can set up your workpiece so that the cutter traces the correct path across it.
So, this means that there are 3 big things to look for in a machine. The first is rigidity, just like in a lathe. If the machine is not rigid, you are going to get poor cutting, plus the machine might flex under the weight of the workpiece being moved around (unlike a lathe, where the workpiece is relatively still, aside from spinning, and a realtively lightweight tool moves about).
Second, you want the three principle axes to be normal (i.e. at right angles) to each other. The X and Y are the most important here for small mills, as you can shim the column to better align the Z axis in most.
Finally, you want to make sure that you can raise and lower the head without disturbing its alignment with your work. With a round-column mill, this is impossible in practice, as the head wil tend to rotate to the left or the right a little when you move the head up or down. A mill with a square column and dovetails (or a knee mill) keeps everything in close alignment when you move the head up or down.
Have you ever clamped your work to the table of a drill press, gotten everything set up only to realize that you can't extend the drill far enough to complete the hole that you are drilling? You have to raise the table in that case, and you've probably noticed that your alignment got spoiled somewhat in the process. You'll encounter the very same problem with a round-column mill, and you will be very frustrated by it. Take a closer look at square column mills, like Grizzly's G0704, G0519, G0463, G0619, and the teeny G8689.
September 20, 2010
I was in the same boat a year or two back and just kind of jumped right in! My Choice was the G0463 thru Grizzly. It had a large enough work envelope and was being used (under numerous names) for CNC conversions to production work. Would i ever use it for production,? Nope. Will it do most things i need? Definitely! you will hear others champion used BridgePorts , Rong Fou etc. Yep, and they are all good choices! me, I wanted something new and fully supported but I didn't have 220v or 440v 3 phase readily available. This mill uses R-8 tooling, so it is easy to get stuff for and it's 110v. the first thing i did after getting mine was install a 3 axis DRO. It was the best mod I've done so far but not inexpensive. Overall the machine is accurate (when you understand it's foibles)and has been very well supported by Griz (even when i admitted to doing something stupid.) It also is very inexpensive for initial acquistion but we all know the machine is usually the cheap part! Vices, tooling collets etc is what really gets ya.
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