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Topic Review (Newest First)
12-09-2008 01:28 PM
Originally Posted by awert
And i heard the small mini lathe are not worth getting...

You heard right, I have a small Jet 9x20 lathe also that I traded for a couple of years ago. This thing is the one I mentioned earlier and is sold under several brand names for wildly differing prices. The Jet version goes for as much $1399 and the HF version which is a different color of the same machine goes for as little as $599 with more equipment than the Jet! This thing is sold by Enco, Jet, Cut Master, Birmingham and a bunch of other brands but none of them are worth squat and the more expensive versions are no better than the ones from HF. They are reasonably powerful enough for their size but are terribly inaccurate and just plain ill designed along with being almost comically crude in construction. The larger lathes are much better built and as long as someone does not expect the durability of a good American machine they are accurate enough and worth what they cost but just like the small machines there are many brands of the same machine for varying prices. If I don't find a good deal soon I most likely will buy that Grizzly G4016 13x40 but to anyone thinking of buying a Chinese lathe, BE CAUTIOUS! I am fully aware of what I am buying and it's limitations but to someone who may be accustomed to running a "real" machine and expecting that kind of performance they will most likely be disappointed.
12-09-2008 12:58 PM
re: New toy for mikey

Grizzly has a good name, people like there products, about 2 years ago i bought a Taiwan lathe (can't remember name) It actually is a pretty good lathe for the money, $400 has everything i want, 12x36 both English and metric threading capability 12 speed forward/revers, probably about late 50's or early 60's. I was missing one gear for metric threading, but i have found one that will work with a little modification...I couldn't afford more than that. And i heard the small mini lathe are not worth getting...
12-09-2008 12:03 PM
oldred I have been watching Craigslist for some time now and it seems that anything within a reasonable range of where I am is either worn out or priced too high. I did find a good deal on a Bridgeport mill and my partner and I scooped that one up but I just can't find a decent lathe. I did miss a real bargain on a 16" Logan a while back so I guess it is just a matter of being in the right place at the right time.
12-09-2008 11:49 AM
powerrodsmike Oldred- I joined a website called
and they have a classified section with some quality stuff for reasonable prices.

Also, I looked on craigslist and saw some good deals on there for machinery.

Later, mikey
12-09-2008 11:37 AM
oldred I too am a connoisseur of fine junk!

I have several old tractors in various stages of restoration and a 1968 John Deere 350 bulldozer which is my pet project at the moment. Now you guys have me yearning for that new lathe I have been thinking about for the last couple of years. I have given up on finding something like Mikey stol...err, traded for, so I will probably just buy a new Chinese import, Grizzly has a 13x40 that has developed quite a following with the home machinist crowd and I can buy it for less than rebuilding my Summitt. Certainly nowhere the quality of the old American or European iron but OK for what I need it for.
12-09-2008 10:41 AM
re: New toy for mikey

Hay, Your my type of guy, Look at all that neat junk.........Good thing i was not there...About 6 months ago i bought a Kalamazoo Horizontal saw, this weighs about 800 lb. 1" blade, hydraulics,14" , liquid cooling pump, real nice, $125...I sold it on ebay about 2 weeks after i bought it, ($550 ) the buyer paid with Money Order, He has never come to pick it up. I contacted him about 3 months ago, he said "Yea i'll send a truck, it never came, saw is still in my barn.....I hope he's not here on the HR board.......
12-08-2008 09:34 PM
oldred F&J, Even if it is total junk and you can't get anything on it to work you would probably get more than what you paid for it from a scrap dealer!
12-08-2008 07:39 PM
F&J I spotted this horizontal milling machine at the fall farm show/auction. These machines are/were owned by the farm and were part of the original farm owners machine shop.

I almost did not bid because it's easy to buy stuff, but then never get it to work. There was a reserve price, but I bid...then nobody else bid. So, the auctioneer said "no sale" but the guys who run the farm machine shop said to accept my $100 bid.

Now to get it home, along with a car, and other auction that blue orchard sprayer with 2 cherry 40 ford wheels . The chevy can take the weight Ok.

We used my sons crawler bucket loader to get it in the shop..through the pass door. That was fun. The crawler he got at the summer show. We buy too much stuff there

Just this weekend I figured out the many electric controls to put on the Ebay 3 phase converter...and it now works. But, sure enough, the end mill toolholder is worn on the bore. I found a new surplus one on ebay for $9.

I'm going to try to cut new window regulator gears for my 32 Nash as soon as I receive the tool holder.

I also found a way to mount a 4 jaw on my 1900 lathe, so I could make a new oil pump gear out of a modern spur gear, for the 1918 studebaker. it worked good, and the stude runs fine now...with oil pressure..
12-07-2008 10:14 PM
powerrodsmike Oh man! You are set to make chips for life.

later, mikey
12-07-2008 08:04 PM
trees Mikey, my partner owned his own shop in Cleveland, Ohio for several years and bought a lot of tools and tooling from a dealer. His half brother was also a machinist and shop owner that bought from the same dealer. He called us and said the old dealer, long retired was dieing of cancer and wanted to sell his hobby machine shop in his basement. He sent us a short list of the key items and said the entire price was $2500 and was worth a lot more. We bought it based on his recommendation and beat feet with a 3/4 ton pu and a 5X10 closed trailer. When i walked into the basement, I immediately asked for the Yellow Pages and rented a one way box van (17 footer was the largest I could find) We filled the box van floor (can't stack steel very high), the trailer and the PU and still had to leave stuff. The South Bend lathe, a small horizontal mill, a metal shaper, a We;;s metal band saw, and a Lincoln Welder were some of the big ticket items, but all the tooling, mics, guages, parallels, 3 and 4 jaw chucks, surface grinder, hundreds of reamers up to 1.5 inches, twist drills, bottom drils, step drills, carbide drills, end mills, collets of all sizes, and drill chucks, straight and Morse Taper, steady rest. The list goes on. We have kept a complete set of reamers and about a dozen of every twist drill size imaginable. We have enough tool steel to last a lifetime. We have sold enough stuff at flea market/swap meets to more than return our investment and pay for the trip. We have since found that there are a lot of hobby basment/garage machine shops out there that have some good stuff that has had little use and can be had for a song, relatively speaking.

12-07-2008 11:11 AM
powerrodsmike That is awesome trees, I am not formally trained in anything, although I did have as much machine shop in HS as they would let me....When I opened my shop, I got a small table top mill, then a small lathe, and just started playing around.making chips and breaking stuff .

. Then I worked my way up to a better mill, then a better lathe, asked questions as I needed to, and now I am able to make most of the things I need in the shop. As you can see, I am still learning too.
Collecting the various tooling can be a bigger expense than the machinery itself...I'm always on the lookout for stuff like that at the swapmeets and garage sales.

Later, mikey
12-07-2008 09:34 AM
trees Mikey, congrats on your find. I am not a machinist but my partner is a retired master tool and die maker that started with a 4 year apprenticeship with TRW. We have an old South Bend quick change with treading capability and he can thread anything, inside or outside, but I am clueless. I enjoyed reading through this thread and you guys have motivated me to go back to school at the young age of 70. There is a Vo-Tech here so tomorrow, I will find out what it takes to start the basic course. We have all the bells and whistles to do the tough stuff so all this will cost me is the time and course(s) and my VA eligibility may still pay for that.

Thanks, guys.

12-05-2008 09:16 PM
powerrodsmike That makes perfect sense now..keep from cutting so much with both sides of the tool. Less work for the tool, less heat too. I have learned something valuable today.
Thank you.

Later, mikey
12-05-2008 06:53 PM
leldai73 the compound is turned at 30 degrees so that as the tool is fed in its only cutting on one side. It took me a little bit to visualize this...but it made sense eventually. some people will put the compound at 29.5 degrees or feed in with the cross slide on the last few passes to clean up both sides...I've never really bothered but I've got ALOT to learn myself so it may be a better method.
12-05-2008 06:38 PM
powerrodsmike Good post. Now using that thread dial makes sense.
One question though, why do you turn the compound rest counterclockwise 30*? I always thought that as long as the bit was positioned correctly that it didn't matter where the compound rest was.

Also, good tip about the suggested depth of cut per pass..I could never figure out why my threads looked cut with an axe and were not smooth on the sides...(sometimes simple things like that escape me ) I always thought it was the way I ground the bit or had it positioned..(just under center)

Later, mikey
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