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toddalin 11-11-2012 11:41 AM

Looking for Someone in So. Cal Who Can "Teach" Me Machining on My Machine
The other day I purchased what has to be the hot rodder's dream machine. It is a ShopMaster Mill/Drill/Lathe with both manual and full CNC capabilities. The machine also includes digital readout (DRO).

This is no little "home" mill. It weighs well over half a ton and can turn flywheels out to 17" diameter. The mill has 23" x 10" x 4" of travel and the lathe can support up to 33" between the spindles. The machine operates either manually or under computer CNC control using G-Code.
Cnc Milling Machine, Metal Lathe Mill Drill, 3 In 1 Machine

I'm located in Orange Co. CA in the Tustin/Orange area. The machine is due for delivery from TN in the next couple days.

I am looking for someone who is experienced in machining and can instruct me in proper technique as I would like to retain all of my fingers. Of course you would also be free to take advantage of the machine for your own pet projects.

I am also interested in comments on what ancillary attachments I should invest in (e.g., Kurt vise, rotary table/swivel plate, center finder, collets, end mills, etc.,) and what tools (e.g., dial indicators, micrometers, etc.) are necessary to produce quality workmanship.


OneMoreTime 11-11-2012 12:48 PM

There are some machinsts forums on the web which can serve your needs the links to which evade me at the moment..but a search should bring them up..


Old Fool 11-12-2012 02:48 PM

Plan on spending 2-3 times as much for tooling as you paid for the machine ! :cool:

toddalin 11-12-2012 03:49 PM


Originally Posted by Old Fool (Post 1610399)
Plan on spending 2-3 times as much for tooling as you paid for the machine ! :cool:

Machine was $4,200 including shipping. I figure that much again or a bit more, because quite a bit is included standard with the machine and I'm not doing aerospace work.

As an example, a good, used, 72#, Kurt-D60 for $100 will serve fine and I don't need a new $550 D-688 or a $2K Kurt II.

I can add as I go, but recognize that there are certain things I need to start out, (e.g., machining vise, hold downs, V-blocks, dial indicator, center finder, etc.). Any suggestions in this area?


cal1320 11-13-2012 04:25 AM

Try here. The Home Machinist! • Index page

toddalin 11-13-2012 11:11 AM


Originally Posted by cal1320 (Post 1610621)

THANKS! That's perfect and I've registered.

timothale 12-07-2012 03:13 PM

any CC classes
Do any of the community colleges still have machine shop classes. I taught a few in the early 80's in N calif at a CC.

75gmck25 12-08-2012 11:37 AM

My son's team competes in something called college Formula SAE, where each college team builds a race car from scratch (using a motorcycle powertrain) and competes with 60-100 other college teams.

Formula SAE teams machine most parts from scratch (each year they must compete a new car) and as college students they have much more time than money. If you donated funds to one of the teams you may be able to watch them and maybe work right along with them.

I know UC Urvine has a team, and at the 2011 competition in Fontana I saw many other California teams. This is a link to the FSAE site .


toddalin 12-08-2012 09:34 PM

Most of the programs at the local colleges have gone the way of budget cuts.

I did finish cleaning and repainting the machine today. It's really pretty now..., in a manly way.

A guy is supposed to come over tomorrow with a forklift to set it on its stand and in place in the garage.

Paint is actually a shade off, (compare the sheet metal to the body) but it won't show in the garage. Pan is obviously a bit lighter but I wanted a readily available brush paint for touch-up, so no big deal.

timothale 12-09-2012 06:08 AM

cover time
If your shop projects are like mine, sometimes making sawdust or sanding wood projects , it's time to have a canvas cover made, Dirt likes to stick to the Way oil after you get it cleaned and reoiled. I ve looked at combination machines but ending up finding a used chinese table top mill with a power feed for under $ 200 but it came with odd ball metric collets, . It had a clothers dryer cord-plug but was actuall a 3 phase machine so another $100 for a used phase converter. My old lathe is too small for a lot of projects, but I have a friend that Needed some Dom tubing and I told him I would trade for letting me use his larger lathe.

toddalin 12-09-2012 05:52 PM

A member of the Corvete Forum brought his forklift by today and we got this thing assembled and positioned. He cleared the 8' garage door by 1" and had to work around the auto lift.

Now I can paint the bottom and make some chips.

mi chael 12-20-2012 03:31 AM

3 Attachment(s)
Even though this thread has not been replied since 12-10-2012, I will still put my 2 cents worth.

Good on you for buying what is a hotrodders dream. I have a separate lathe/mill set up myself at home as well as everything else you can think of. I am a member of 3 machining websites which may help you if you are interested. If you can get to or apply for, do try and get into a night class for some extra learning.

Here are some other websites you can try:

Projects In Metal, LLC The Best Search Links on the Net
and Practical Machinist - Largest Manufacturing Technology Forum on the Web

All of these are very friendly websites which can help you with your project(s).

Hope this helps in any way. If you can't get onto these sites just google them and they should load you up.

Below are some pics of what I have in my shop at home.

Just as a precaution, I would reccomend making sure you are up with your safety with respect to these machines. They are "NOT" toys!!!! Always use eye protection and "NEVER" leave the chuck key in the chuck. Read any manual you have/or can get and read it thoroughly. These machines can and will harm you(both seriously and fataly) if you are not careful. However, treat them with respect and use them for what they are intended and you will have many years of both fun and knowledge to pass onto someone else.

Happy machining!!!

mi chael.

toddalin 12-21-2012 11:02 AM

Thanks Mi chael. I'll check out those sites.

I found a local guy who teaches CNC for $35/hr. I may give him a call to get this up and running in CNC mode if I can't get it done.

I bought the adapter cord (USB - DB25) the other day and hope to try for CNC operation this weekend time permitting.

mi chael 12-22-2012 02:35 AM

As other people have said in previous posts, be prepared to spend alot on tooling. I spent $6500 just for the lathe and have spent the same amount on tooling for it. The mill, I paid $2500 and spent $4000 on tooling for it.

It won't take long for the costs to add up. Good luck this weekend. Let us know how you progressed.

mi chael.

hedonite 12-28-2012 05:59 PM

Tooling and books.

Originally Posted by toddalin (Post 1625533)
Thanks Mi chael. I'll check out those sites.

I found a local guy who teaches CNC for $35/hr. I may give him a call to get this up and running in CNC mode if I can't get it done.

Sounds like you're going down the right path. I have a few books scanned PDF that I can send you that have excellent examples of Mill or Lathe G-Code routines.

I can see your stepper motors but not your controller type. Did your controller come with a book? It may have some great examples right in the programming section. Remember to test your code slow before you rip into it.

Let me know if you get stuck or you need help.

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