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Looking to move into an industrial machine, and looking for the right machine for the job. Seeking people smarter than I to help guide me.

This one started as a 760/22.

I've only ever used a mach 3 controller and it was fine for what it was. Didn't realize mach 4 was hated.
 
I second the Fanuc advice. The first machine I bought was an early 90s Fanuc Mori, the learning curve was short and the minimal maintenance I have had to do was easy to find help with online. I have since added newer Mitsubishi based Mori and Mazak machines, and while newer and nicer are a little more difficult to trouble shoot when I have had too and not as well documented as the Fanuc.

I am also capped at a 22" length. Next machine will be larger and with probing and tool setter so you have identified those weakness's. These can be added to older machines but the macro programing is a little daunting and the systems expensive. IMO your better off getting those from the factory. If your making one off parts I imagine it would be even more important so to not waste any more time than necessary on setup.

$30-40K budget is pretty stout for a first machine and will get you a decent machine along with a rotary phase converter. I am running an American Rotary at my home shop and have line 3 phase at my rented shop. I don't notice any difference. I have thought about going to a Phase Perfect, but you can buy a second machine for what they cost. You can also build a rotary like others have mentioned, but they are pretty cheap to buy and in the grand scheme of things your time is likely worth more than that.

I am running Japanese machines, but that is just what was available really. With your budget I would be looking for a 10-15 year old Korean made Fanuc based machine. For one off parts I would also take a Haas VF style if the price was right. Id skip the TM style, better can be had.
 
I've owned 30+ Haas mills, and I love them. That TM2 is a great choice and it's easy to add probing. I owned a TM1p and it was dead reliable. You can have the nearest Haas Factory Outlet check out the machine and give you a full report for not very much money. As for tooling, Shars is the place to go for high quality, reasonably priced tool holders. Another thing to consider, since you're familiar with retrofit controls is the Masso control. Easy to install, and amazing value. I would look at something like a Milltronics knee mill with their old control ($5-12k). I've sold my business (Ross Reels) and am building a Hardinge lathe retrofit, and a Precision Matthews milling machine, both with Masso controls. BTW, another benefit of the TM series is that they run on either single phase or 3 phase.
Good luck with this new adventure.
 
Quite the variety of opinions here haha :).

1. Sounds like I should visit Joe and see if he has anything. I think I might actually be able to see their shop from near my house since they're down the hill.
2. Some of ya'll love Haas, and some say steer clear haha. No worries, I run into all the time about autos and doesn't seem like anyone is truly right or wrong, it's all a matter of their needs vs. how well that specific brand met them.

I appreciate everyone's advice so far. I'll keep looking local and see what I can find.
 
stay away from Chinese anything. Others here have the experience to realize the difference between a setup issue, tooling issue, or machine issue. China - yes the whole country - operates on a very different set of values and business principles -

Maybe we have a problem, houston, because of a lack of information. There's a couple of different issues here :

Saying "China bad" is just like saying "Japan bad". I think there are some makino owners who would dispute that. Yet Jet, an American company, for decades made everything in Japan and none of it was very good. Jet != Makino. The same principle applies to China.

Not only that but Japanese business principles, well ... I could refer you to flower and snake but will refrain.

The next thing is, I think most people have no idea of the size and variety of China. Yeah, there's places with barefoot guys swinging off bamboo poles, just like all those pakistan videos. But .... there's also


or you guys like cute little engines ?


there's a ton of these ads all over my stupid telephone, muchas alottas of 5 axis machines swivelling and sliding (I haven't figured out how to turn them off, but I like the song in this one so)


here's a shorty for carblob


Y'all have no idea of the size and variety of this place. Almost all of california's population would fit in just shanghai. This is one city, there's thousands more with populations over a million. Cute little seaside qingdao is 9 million, and it's almost a village.

On top of that, china decided to do manufacturing. You can't understand the magnitude of that until you drive somewhere and see nothing but factory after factory after factory. Every single place on the east coast and half the middle wanted factories, and they got them.

You can't just say "Look out for china." That's like saying "Watch out for europe and north america and maybe australia too." Would you say that germany is the same as spain is the same as greece is the same as brazil is the same as utah ? It's just not sensible.

There's also something like 350 different spoken languages, so forget about that "it's all chinese" idea as well. It's not as bad as twenty years ago when you could go across the street and the neighbor wouldn't speak your language but still .. saying "china" is about the same as saying "the northern hemisphere".

One for the road, I'm getting a little hungry. Don't mess with chinese girls if you know what's good for you


(right mouse, "open in another tab" should open the vids in a new tab, works for me with a really old browser so should work for most people).

And no, catbox does not have viruses, it's a pretty cool service, better than dropbox imo.
 
Look for used "brand name" tooling on Ebay, Marketplace, auctions, etc. I've bought many BT40 toolholders, many of them Nikken for $50 - $60. One of the best brands.
I built my own rotary phase converter, based on a new (auction) Baldor 20 hp motor. Used one of the designs on here. Cost me about $1400 total. I run a Mazak VTC 20 with it,
Bob
 
Maybe we have a problem, houston, because of a lack of information. There's a couple of different issues here :

Saying "China bad" is just like saying "Japan bad". I think there are some makino owners who would dispute that. Yet Jet, an American company, for decades made everything in Japan and none of it was very good. Jet != Makino. The same principle applies to China.

Not only that but Japanese business principles, well ... I could refer you to flower and snake but will refrain.

The next thing is, I think most people have no idea of the size and variety of China. Yeah, there's places with barefoot guys swinging off bamboo poles, just like all those pakistan videos. But .... there's also


or you guys like cute little engines ?


there's a ton of these ads all over my stupid telephone, muchas alottas of 5 axis machines swivelling and sliding (I haven't figured out how to turn them off, but I like the song in this one so)


here's a shorty for carblob


Y'all have no idea of the size and variety of this place. Almost all of california's population would fit in just shanghai. This is one city, there's thousands more with populations over a million. Cute little seaside qingdao is 9 million, and it's almost a village.

On top of that, china decided to do manufacturing. You can't understand the magnitude of that until you drive somewhere and see nothing but factory after factory after factory. Every single place on the east coast and half the middle wanted factories, and they got them.

You can't just say "Look out for china." That's like saying "Watch out for europe and north america and maybe australia too." Would you say that germany is the same as spain is the same as greece is the same as brazil is the same as utah ? It's just not sensible.

There's also something like 350 different spoken languages, so forget about that "it's all chinese" idea as well. It's not as bad as twenty years ago when you could go across the street and the neighbor wouldn't speak your language but still .. saying "china" is about the same as saying "the northern hemisphere".

One for the road, I'm getting a little hungry. Don't mess with chinese girls if you know what's good for you


(right mouse, "open in another tab" should open the vids in a new tab, works for me with a really old browser so should work for most people).

And no, catbox does not have viruses, it's a pretty cool service, better than dropbox imo.
I'm sure just like anywhere there's good stuff that comes out of china...but they really shot themselves in the foot with quality lol. People tend to associate their experiences, especially negative, and make a lump sum reckoning.
 
Any considerations for doing things like 3d contouring, and machine memory that I should be concerned with? Will older machines struggle more with more complex jobs due to file sizes and processing power?

Does anyone have experience with Sharp with a Fanuc control? SVL-2416sf.

Cheers all
 
.but they really shot themselves in the foot with quality lol.

Oh really ? Who's got shars micrometers ? A Phase II rotary table ? How about mhajicek's little vise ? Who here has complaints about the "economy" line of hobs that Ash sells ? My own experiences were with a big shaper that is chomping happily away, a couple of smaller machines from twenty five years ago that are still cooking, and a grinder that Mike Simard from alt.machines bought and he was happy as a clam.

Yes, I have bought cheapo end mills and drills from Enco back in the day, they may have been from china (but probably india or pakistan) but if I buy a $10 end mill, I don't expect it to perform like a $30 end mill ...

How much of this "china" stuff is real and how much is political ? And how much is "I bought this $50 item for $3 and it didn't perform the way I want !"

btw, if Gar is still here, at one time Overtons were sneered at for being Rumanian :)

I'd just rather see comments being a little more rational ("it's no good" is not exactly a clearcut description of the problem) whether it's china or poland or ethiopia or even alabama.

(btw, gar, I personally think the Haas "hard-turned" tool holders are really bad ... so I guess that means that cheap american crap should be avoided, maritool, that leaves you out, you're made in that crappy US :D
 
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I'm sure just like anywhere there's good stuff that comes out of china...but they really shot themselves in the foot with quality lol. People tend to associate their experiences, especially negative, and make a lump sum reckoning.
Then there's the fact that many Americans like cheap stuff, so Chinese companies make cheap stuff for them. Remember AMT Tools? Crap. And crap is crap, no matter who makes it.
 
I was referring to the cheap quality stuff you get at retail stores.

Me personally, for my job a don't have anything chinese for measuring...if my company was to give me such tooling I would gracefully refuse. I'd rather spend my money and get the best rather than accept a handout that may or may not be good.

There was a thread a week ago on some Chicom vises, I'm seriously considering buying one as there are some very good reviews. If something is proven to work and is priced right it would be quite foolish to care where it's from.
 








 
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