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Old 11-09-2007, 12:24 PM   #1
andre3k
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Any home machinists here?

I signed up for a basic machining class at N. Harris College next semester. I'm considering buying a small lathe to start learning on a and making small parts with. Most of my projects will be gun related, cutting and threading barrels, compensators, and making muzzle brakes. I've been doing some research and people have varying opinions of the quality of the mills coming from China. They all need some work to get setup but can they do precision work, down to .001 in accuracy. Right now I'm looking at a grizzley gunsmith lathe. Anyone here do this as a hobby?

http://www.grizzly.com/products/G4003G
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Old 11-09-2007, 12:26 PM   #2
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If u need CAD holler at me, no charge!!! especially for gunsmith items...

if you do end up getting that ball rolling that is cool as
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Old 11-09-2007, 12:28 PM   #3
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If you're interested, I have a guy that works for SO that does this at home. He does awesome work too, even custom stocks.

Let me know, I could put you in touch with him to get info if you like.
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Old 11-09-2007, 12:28 PM   #4
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I'm taking the class to see if I like it. Being the police is cool, but I need to learn a skilled trade to keep in the back pocket. If I do the CNC program at NH, how valuable is that looking for entry level work? I also have a bachelors degree.

heres the classes for the program.
http://dstc.nhmccd.edu/6257/

Last edited by andre3k; 11-09-2007 at 12:30 PM.
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Old 11-09-2007, 12:42 PM   #5
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Checkout http://www.cnczone.com Lots of knowledgeable folk there.

I've seen quite a bit of discussion over there for the china made equipment.
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Old 11-09-2007, 06:46 PM   #6
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PM DNix600.

I am POSITIVE he can help you out.
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Old 11-09-2007, 08:13 PM   #7
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Old 11-09-2007, 08:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andre3k View Post
I've been doing some research and people have varying opinions of the quality of the mills coming from China. They all need some work to get setup but can they do precision work, down to .001 in accuracy. Right now I'm looking at a grizzley gunsmith lathe.
dude i have ran some pieces of machines, with taper and slack, that should be boat anchors and still got .0005 , in the end it matters how good and the kind of finnese(sp) you use while machining, one shot i worked at bought a $500 mini lathe and we held .0005, so it doesnt matter if its chinese u can still use it for what u want since your not doin production

go for it this trade is losing skilled people fast, and that means more money for the rest of us
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Old 11-09-2007, 09:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andre3k View Post
I'm taking the class to see if I like it. Being the police is cool, but I need to learn a skilled trade to keep in the back pocket. If I do the CNC program at NH, how valuable is that looking for entry level work? I also have a bachelors degree.

heres the classes for the program.
http://dstc.nhmccd.edu/6257/

where i work they probably start somewhere around 17, or 18.....
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Old 11-09-2007, 09:53 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjay77 View Post
dude i have ran some pieces of machines, with taper and slack, that should be boat anchors and still got .0005 , in the end it matters how good and the kind of finnese(sp) you use while machining, one shot i worked at bought a $500 mini lathe and we held .0005, so it doesnt matter if its chinese u can still use it for what u want since your not doin production

go for it this trade is losing skilled people fast, and that means more money for the rest of us
I've been wanting to do it for a while, but I figured I would shorten the learning curve by taking an intro class. If I really like it I'll get the certificate and see where that goes. I'm not looking to do any production type stuff, just one off items for myself as a hobby. They talk down on some of the grizzley, Harbor freight, and enco machines on the forums.
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Old 11-27-2007, 01:16 PM   #11
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Bueller.....Bueller.....Anyone? Anyone?

Just need anyone that does this at the house or a small shop that can answer some questions. I know many of yall have access to full CNC centers at work but I dont need that. (yet)
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Checkout http://www.cnczone.com Lots of knowledgeable folk there.

I've seen quite a bit of discussion over there for the china made equipment.
Quote:
Originally Posted by andre3k View Post
Bueller.....Bueller.....Anyone? Anyone?

Just need anyone that does this at the house or a small shop that can answer some questions. I know many of yall have access to full CNC centers at work but I dont need that. (yet)


Did you try that cnczone? Lots of home machinists and pros there as well.
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Old 11-27-2007, 06:47 PM   #13
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I have a cheap little Chinese mill/drill I do mine on. I do dovetails for sights, mill work on 1911 slides, and odds and ends.

Just depends what point you are trying to reach. For custom built from scratch stuff you'll need a better machine than I have, but for the occasional hobbyist it works fine.

I could use a lathe sometimes, but it hasn't held me up from any projects yet.
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Old 11-27-2007, 08:30 PM   #14
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Anything new will hold tolerance until it gets some wear or abuse. I'm talking about real machines not Harbor Freight junk. I have seen Enco equipment hold up for several years in production shops if it is maintained. Home use shouldn't be a problem.

CNC is ok but you will never get the money for pushing buttons that a true manual machinist in a job shop can make. There is a huge difference between machinist and machine operator.
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Old 01-18-2008, 12:06 PM   #15
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Ok found two lathes on craigslist. The first one is still available, haven't called about the second one.

http://austin.craigslist.org/bfs/526446058.html

The only thing I'm concerned about on this one is the 24" between the centers and the 3 phase motor. Buyer is willing to do a straight trade for one of my AR's. I would have to see if the motor can be rewired for 220 single phase, find a phase converter, or install a new motor. Not to mention tooling.

http://austin.craigslist.org/tls/532745599.html

Seems like the better deal. Comes with tooling, steady rest, 2 chucks and is a single phase motor. I really like the 32" inches between the centers, which means that I can do barrel work with no probs.

Any suggestions or know of any places local that have a lathe for sale?
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Old 01-18-2008, 12:58 PM   #16
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if you need cheap machining my father in law owns LS machine in alvin,tx and gives hugh discounts for cash......tell him george sent ya.

oh ya.......pm sent about lathe
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Old 01-18-2008, 01:12 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjay77 View Post
dude i have ran some pieces of machines, with taper and slack, that should be boat anchors and still got .0005 , in the end it matters how good and the kind of finnese(sp) you use while machining, one shot i worked at bought a $500 mini lathe and we held .0005, so it doesnt matter if its chinese u can still use it for what u want since your not doin production

go for it this trade is losing skilled people fast, and that means more money for the rest of us
this is true, I have a chinese lathe with a 12' bed, it has some slack, but my machinist knows the machine and he does some serious work with it.
I also have a clausing and a huge poreba, as well as 2 bridgeport knee mills with dros, gear shaper, gear hobber, monster saws and other goodies
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Old 01-18-2008, 01:44 PM   #18
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Quote:
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this is true, I have a chinese lathe with a 12' bed, it has some slack, but my machinist knows the machine and he does some serious work with it.
I also have a clausing and a huge poreba, as well as 2 bridgeport knee mills with dros, gear shaper, gear hobber, monster saws and other goodies
the grizzly 4003g has gotten good reviews on some other forums. I've heard that the customer service is pretty good. I'm just worried that with the older machines I will have to scrounge up parts and tooling to get them to do what I need to do. I'm new to machining and really wouldn't know what to look out for with used stuff.
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Old 01-18-2008, 02:11 PM   #19
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Quote:
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I have a chinese lathe with a 12' bed,
I hope you mean a 12 INCH bed! I've never heard of a 12 FOOT lathe!
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Old 01-18-2008, 05:38 PM   #20
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Dude, you need to pm Radar. That is what he does for a living. He has one of the leading machining companies in America.
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