shaking table vise

tips for buying your first milling machine | hackaday

If youre interested in making things (and since youre reading this, were going to assume you are), youve almost certainly felt a desire to make metal parts. 3D printers are great, but have a lot of drawbacks: limited material options, lack of precision, and long printing times. If you want metal parts that adhere to even moderately tight tolerances, a milling machine is your only practical option. There is, after all, a very good reason that theyre essential to manufacturing.

However, it can be difficult to know where to start for the hobbyist who doesnt have machining experience. What kind of milling machine should you get? Should you buy new or used? What the heck is 3-phase power, and can you get it? These questions, among many others, can be positively overwhelming to the uninitiated. Luckily, we your friends at Hackaday are here to help give you some direction. So, if youre ready to learn, then read on! Already an expert? Leave some tips of your own in the comments!

Before we get into the details of what configuration of milling machine youll most likely want to buy, let us first point out that were only going to be talking aboutmanualmilling machines in this guide. CNC mills are a whole other beast, and theyre going to get a guide all to themselves. Manual and CNC mills share a lot in common (CNC mills are often just converted manual mills), but CNC mills have additional requirements that would over-complicate this article. So, were just covering manual machines in this post.

Modern milling machines are divided into two basic types: horizontal and vertical. This determines whether the machines spindle axis runs up and down, or side to side. Both types of machine will often have heads, columns, and tables that tilt or swivel, which means both kinds can be used for a lot of the same tasks. However, certain jobs will be easier on one machine than the other.

The difference between the machines, in practice, is more pronounced than just which way theyre oriented. A vertical machine will have the table mounted perpendicular to the spindles zero-tilt position, while a horizontal machine will have the spindle mounted parallel to the plane of the table. This introduces a fundamental difference in what kinds of jobs are practical on each type of machine.

A horizontal milling machines primary strength is the over arm, which constrains the rotating arbor on two sides. This gives it incredible rigidity, and allows the machinist to take very heavy cuts that would introduce more side load then a vertical machine could handle. The strength is so high that its entirely possible (and common) to stack multiple cutters on the arbor in order to cut, for example, a flat table with slots all in a single pass. This makes it well suited to surfacing jobs, cutting grooves and slots, and similar tasks where the part is flat in one axis.

The downside, of course, is that its much more cumbersome (and sometimes impossible) to makeparts that have cuts in all axes. This is where a vertical milling machine excels: in versatility. Youd be hard pressed to find a job that a vertical mill cant do though its sometimes a lot more time-consuming than a horizontal mill, depending on the part geometry.

Now that you know the difference, you probably already know which one you want. But, just in case, well say that you almost certainly want a vertical mill. Horizontal mills are great for a small portion of tasks, but those are also tasks that most hobbyists wont often perform. The versatility of a vertical mill lends itself well to the varied and diverse tasks that hobbyists lean towards, in contrast to the specialty production work horizontal mills are generally used for.

Hopefully, youve decided that a vertical mill is the best choice for you, otherwise this section isnt going to be very useful. Assuming you have decided on a vertical mill, youre probably curious about which features to look for, and are wondering what actually matters. Covering every detail on the subject would take an entire book, but were going to go over some of the most important things to consider.

This is a question that drives a lot of purchasing decisions, and milling machines are no different. So, does it matter? Yes and no. Milling machines have been around for alongtime, and there really arent any trade secrets when it comes to their construction. Its well-known what makes a good machine, and what doesnt. Theoretically then, any manufacturer can follow these designprinciples and make a high quality machine.

Reality, unfortunately, doesnt live up to that promise. There are two reasons for this: manufacturing quality and cost. In order to keeps costs down, many manufacturers will cut corners. They might use poor quality materials, under-powered motors, and so on. Even if the manufacturer isnt purposefully cutting corners, its entirely possible that they might just be incapable of high-quality manufacturing. Poorly made lead screws, imprecise machining, and loose tolerances can all leave you with a mill that is frustrating to use and which cant hold tolerable precision.

Therefore, its a good idea to buy a proven machine. Usually, that means going with a respectedbrand. But, some less expensive brands still produce quality machines (often clones of more expensive models). They may have fewer features, or less robust motors, but could be enough for your needs. Just be sure to read some reviews from people doing real work with them.

Small desktop milling machines can be tempting, but its best to avoid them if youre planning to mill metal. Think about the last time you had to drill a hole in steel, or had to cut off a piece with a hacksaw. Its difficult work, and takes a lot of force. Your milling machine needs to be able to apply that kind of force without flexing at all even a little bit of flex with ruin any chances of milling a part with respectable tolerances.

For that reason, the frame of the mill needs to be as heavy and rigid as possible. A small desktop machine will almost certainly be unable to mill anything harder than aluminum, and even then itll be imprecise. The wisest choice, if you want even moderate precision, is to buy a mill thats as large and heavy as you have space for.

A DRO (digital readout) is a module that can be added to each axis of a milling machine. Some machines come with them, others have them available as upgrade packages. Kits are often available to retrofit mills that didnt originally have them as an option as well. A DRO gives you a display that tells you how far youve moved the table (or quill), which makes pretty much every operation much easier.

Using a DRO isnt strictly necessary, as all mills have dials for measuring movement. However, reading them can be cumbersome and time-consuming. This is especially true when you consider backlash (slop in the screws), which is easy to compensate for when you have a DRO, since it only tells you how much the table has actually moved, as opposed to how much the handle has moved.

Like a DRO, power feed is something that can be added to each axis, and which many mills come with from the factory. It allows you to toggle a small motor which moves the table for you, so that you dont have to crank the handle yourself. This can dramatically lower fatigue, but can also give you a better surface finish on your cut as the speed stays consistent throughout the cut.

Like car enthusiasts, machinists make a big deal about horsepower. And, this isnt completely unwarranted the last thing you want is the motor stalling in the middle of a cut. That said, virtually all mills will have some way to gear down the motor to gain torque at the cost of speed. Milling steel requires high torque and low-speed, while aluminum needs the opposite.

So, you can certainly compensate for a motor without a ton of power. That may be a good idea, as motor horsepower makes a huge difference when it comes to cost. That said, you should probably avoid a mill that has any less than 1HP. Its also difficult to find high horsepower electric motors that arent 3-phase.

We dont have the room to get into how multi-phase power works, and what its advantages and disadvantages are. But, suffice it to say that you almost certainly dont have 3-phase power at home. If youve got an industrial space, you may have 3-phase power available, but even then you may not. The point is, many industrial-grade tools have 3-phase motors, which cannot be run on standard household single-phase power on their own.

That means that most of you will be limited to mills with single-phase motors. However, that often makes it possible to find 3-phase machineryfor significantly cheaper than single-phase machinery. If you find such a machine that strikes your fancy, it is possible to replace the spindle motor with a single-phase unit, or to buy or build a phase converter.

A mill/drill machine is basically a drill press that has had a 2-axis table strapped onto it. Theyre significantly cheaper than true milling machines, but thats for a reason. They really dont have the rigidity necessary for real milling, and are really only good for precise hole drilling and very light milling. Other than saving a little cash, there is no reason to buy one, as an actual milling machine can certainly drill too.

You should seriously consider buying used. Quality mills are machines that are designed to stand up to serious abuse for decades, and you can save a lot by buying used. Local industrial auctions and Craigslist are good places to look. Inspecting used machinery is kind of like inspecting a used car: make sure everything is working, that there isnt excessive wear, and that you can see its been taken care of.

Dirt and grime are okay, that can be cleaned, as long as the important bits are clean, lubricated, and not too worn. Make sure the spindle spins smoothly, has no play (measure run out if possible), and sounds good. Grab the table and jiggle it as hard as you can, and make sure you cant feel any play. Take a look at the screws to see if theyre clean and unmarred. Make sure the ways (the smooth metal that the table slides on) are clean, lubricated, and dont have gouges. If all of those things are good, and you dont notice any other red flags like cracked castings, the machine is probably solid and entirely usable. Age isnt generally considered a problem as long as its been maintained and serviced.

Milling machines are heavy; they can be anywhere from several hundred pounds on the light side, to several thousand pounds on the hefty side. Getting one back to your home or shop isnt a trivial task. If youre transporting it yourself, make sure your truck or trailer can handle the load, and that its securely strapped down. Youll also need a forklift of some kind of both sides of the delivery (to load and unload the machine).

If, like most hobbyists, you dont have a heavy flatbed truck and your own forklift, you can hire riggers to move the machine for you. Expect to pay at least a few hundred dollars (and sometimes a lot more) to have it moved, even over a short distance. If you know anyone who has this kind of equipment, its definitely worth calling in some favors youll need that money for tooling.

Once youve got your milling machine home, there are a number of purchases still to make. First and foremost, youre going to need a decent machinists vise. You dont necessarily need to spend hundreds of dollars on a Kurt vise, but youll want something that is well machined and which isnt going to loosen. A swivel mount is nice to have, but isnt a necessity.

Next, youll need a way to hold your end mills. For this, youll need collets or end millholders that match the arbor on your mill (this information should be readily available in the specs). Youll probably want to start with two or three of them in various sizes, so that you can use end mills with different shank sizes.

Speaking of end mills, youll want to order a bunch. You can buy them in bulk cheaply via eBay, which is a good idea when you first get started. Buy carbide, and a handful in a few different sizes. Make sure the shank sizes match the collets/end mill holders you bought. Generally, 2 flutes are recommended for aluminum and 4 flutes are recommended for steel. If youre not sure what youll be cutting, you can get some of each, or get some 3 flute end mills as a compromise. Expect to pay $10 and up per end mill (yes, tooling gets expensive).

Finally, you may want to consider a coolant system. These come in a few different variations, but flood coolant is usually the easiest to get setup. Despite the name, coolant does a lot more than just cool; it also lubricates and flushes away chips. Coolant systems can fairly easily be added to any milling machine, and many come with them from the factory.

Now the fun finally starts! Youre going to want to do a lot of experimenting in the beginning. Do research on feeds and speeds (and get a decent calculator for them), what different end mills are good for, and how to perform specific kinds of operations. Dont get discouraged if you break an end mill, thats why you bought extras. Practice, practice, practice, and soon youll be coming up with excuses to make precision metal parts for all of your projects.

Dont look down your nose at a mill drill. I have a unit almost identical to the Grizzly G1006 (now the G0705 I think). This sells for $1400 I got mine like new for around $500 from a friend who was leaving the country. It runs fine on 110V power and I dont know how I lived without it. Just avoid heavy cuts and climb milling. Track down the Rong Fu RF-30 which is the same thing yet again. Sure it would be nice to have a bridgeport, but consider the price, weight, size, and need to rewire your shop. If you arent doing production work where you need speed and the ability to do heavy cuts, is it worth it? A mill in the hand is worth two in the bush.

Agreed. My round column mill/drill RF-30 equivalent is working great for any purpose Ive thrown at it. The 4 Z axis travel is annoying, however, especially when switching from drill chuck to mill collets. Hasnt been a critical issue though.

Also a lot of people are afraid of dials, dont be, they are perfectly good for 99% of work once you get in the habit of keeping the backlash on one side of the dial and make sure to always back up and go forward again so your dial reads true. The only time I can think of it being a possible issue is when hogging out the inside of a pocket, but there are tricks to get around it.

When the limited Z-travel is an issue then its pretty easy to overcome by putting a dial indicator to the side of the milling head when adjusting. On the other hand, Ive used the vertical round column several times to compensate for the limited 500mm X- travel and a few times for odd pieces which I had to clamp next to the machine.

I have a few screw machine drills that are quite short. They can sometimes bypass the need to have to raise the head when you have to change to the drill chuck. I should get a full set of them some fine day.

A good set of screw machine length drill bits often costs more than a set of the same sizes, of the same quality, in the longer jobber length. Half the tool, twice the money. :P But they sure are nice when you have to get up close to the work with a mill head or lathe tailstock, plus they are usually straighter and deflect less than the jobber length bits.

This is a great mill for light duty stuff, aluminum, and even steel if you go light on cuts. Its a fantastic mill if you spend time cleaning, deburring and scraping the bearing surfaces. I cant stress how poorly these machines were finished. .

The biggest downside to these round column mills is that you lose your positioning when you raise/lower the headstock, as the headstock can rotate freely on the column. Sure, itd be nice to have a Bridgeport, but these benchtop machines are plenty good for hobby use. I got mine on Craigslist for $1000 with a bunch of collets, vises, and tooling.

Any of the round column drill/mills can be improved by filling the column with hydraulic cement. Hydraulic cement swells a little as it cures so it will be very firmly stuck and compressed in the column. The added mass helps dampen vibration and it increases the stiffness of the column so heavier cuts can be made without deflection.

Yes, many (most) homes dont have 3 phase power. But, in the USA at least, most have 240V single phase. It s not that difficult to make pseudo-3ph with capacitors. Also, for less than $300US you can an get an electronic 3ph drive, for example the Hitachi WJ200 for 1HP. Units like this convert, for example, 240V single phase to 240V 3ph. This is a good investment since it allows variable speed, programmability, and inputs for external control.

It is also true that many would not have access to a forklift. But, having moved my Bport and helped several other move theirs (or similar size machines), it can be done safely with a pickup truck, a lever, timber stacks, and pipes.

A curious thing about these converters is that ones that simply make 3 phase from single phase, without any adjustments to tweak and twiddle cost considerably more than the fancy Variable Frequency Drives which can have nearly 100 parameters to adjust and offer addon modules for serial control, modbus, some even have options for Ethernet and various other gee whiz stuff.

Theres a market for a cheap as high grade dirt phase converter that does absolutely nothing other than make proper, clean, 3 phase power from single phase input. No adjustments, no knobs, buttons LED displays etc. Such does exist but you have to pay through the nose and every other orifice to *not get* all the extra stuff.

There are also 110~115 volt 1PH to 220 volt 3PH VFDs but they top out at running a 1 horsepower 3PH motor. One should only be considered for lower power machinery that has weird stuff like a proprietary drive system or two speed motor that would be difficult or impossible to refit with a different motor.

The Chinese-made IGBT 3 phase VFDs put out pretty clean sinusoidal power for the price. Even Allen Bradley and Mitsubishi drives are dirt cheap. Our shop picked up a 10 HP drive by AB (PowerFlex line) at $700 brand new on ebay.

All you need is an old junk 3 phase motor, a couple of caps and a relayyou can make your own simple rotary converter A 2hp 3 phase junkyard motor will easy run a 1hp 3 phase mill. Just double your motor and dont worry, you will only pull whatever load you really have from the net plus whatever the idle current of the motor is.

Ultimately it barely gets used; the work space is too small for many jobs and its built so light that you have to take very light cuts. While CNC helps me ignore the time consumption, it still deters me from ever using it. In hindsight I should have saved up and bought a heavier cast iron machine. Some in the $1000-$1500 range (the Sherline was bought used for $550) offer much more rigidity and healthy increases in work space.

Size definitely matters in this subject. I once asked a wizened retired machinist whether I should buy a 6 inch chuck or 10 chuck for my lathe. His response: Well, you can always chuck small stuff in a big chuck, but you cant chuck big stuff in a small chuck. ;)

Some of the farce of it too is that just because the mill is smaller, doesnt mean it is more accurate not that Ive ran into someone with this conception. The only plus side to the Sherline is I can carry it by hand, but thats also the root problem.

But the reverse is also true: just because something is bigger/heavier doesnt make it more accurate. Some small machines are extremely accurate but, of course, because they are designed to be. Manual watchmaker machines (lathe, mill) can do extremely precise work, precision Swiss-type CNC lathes also can have accuracy almost hard to understand. Some super-precise machines can be carried in one hand but still have m precision.

Between my lathe (a small 710) and my mill, Ive found the lathe to be the much more valuable tool. Even being a dinky 710 it gets a lot of use and Ive often said its the best $500 I ever spent. I could certainly make use of something larger, but it surprised me just how often I needed something concentric and round that couldnt otherwise me done with hand tools.

Wolf, nice score! Ive been eyeing something about that size, but most the ones around here start at about $600 used. For certain I need a longer bed to be more flexible with drill sizes, but even more swing would be welcome.

IF the lathe can use the 10 chuck that is. It have to be designed for the weight/size of the larger chuck or else one can shorten the life-time of the spindle bearings, shorten the life-time of the operator (a.k.a. rapid disassembly of the chuck) or just cause vibrations reducing accuracy.

yeah i have the automation direct GS3 since i wanted sensorless vector drive for my mill, but the GS2 is also a great drive , you can pick up cheap ones on ebay too, and obv there are the chinese ones. i like automation direct because theyre really helpful and knowledge on drives and motors.

Its not (that much) about load, the VFD has relatively high frequency ripple in the output, which tends to cause fairly significant eddy currents where pure 50/60Hz doesnt, these eddy currents then like to go through the bearings, which eats them alive

Biggest problem when adding a VFD to a manual machine is staying aware of the physical gear the machine is in. Dont put it in high gear and try covering all speeds with the dang VFD you will have no torque on the slow speeds and cause yourself issues.

Interesting point as well, you can extend the speed range of a machine with a VFD too, most will allow setting their output freq all the way to 400hz! (really you would never do this but 90hz for a 50% overspeed is usually ok without worry of motor damage).

This isnt universally correct. My VFD has two different connection options. One is for high speed / high horsepower spindles and the other is for low frequency Bridgeport type motors. It works well with both.

Also, you can easily run 3 phase equiptment like 3-phase input VFDs from 1 phase 220v home outlets by derating. Derating is very easy with manual milling heads because most draw very little power in comparison to high speed spindles.

We have a Sharp almost identical to the one in the first picture in our shop at work. It is not the highest quality machine but I certainly love being able to get away from doing CAD or programming work to spend some time making chips. Fun story, I designed and built a working CNC machine on a budget of less than $175 in college to spite a prof who said that I dont possess the technical skill to do that. Fun time

They also claim to be cross platform while only supporting the unspeakable rotten fruit brand and some operating system for which you have to spend half your time struggling with updates every day. No, not for me.

Some small additions: Just a few days ago I saw a pretty extensive video from oxtoolco about judging the quality of a 2nd hand lathe. Much will be the same for a mill.

I dont agree with hackadays view of avoiding 3 phase equipment. VFDs are very cheap nowadays (1.5kW

VFD's also have lot's of internal parameters to adjust. I've adjusted mine on purpose so it has a relatively low torque at low rpm. This is ideal for tapping. I can use my Mill + VFD to tap blind M4 holes. Torque is easily adjusted to stop without breaking the tap when it hits the bottom of the hole. Flip a switch /potmeter and the tap reverses at high rpm. This works (probably) better than those dedicated tappig heads and is a lot cheaper

Lot's of (starting) hackers won't have room for a mill the size in this article. If you want to buy a little table top machine it's very likely a good idea to buy one with a BLDC motor. Also to consider: These small tabletop mills are a lot easier to convert to CNC than the bigger one's.

The 12 speed V-belt mill I have is a BF30 equivalent (Taiwanese, bought about 25 years ago). If you have something like this, PUT A VFD ON IT.

Be warned that milling/lathe/metalworking is a hobby in itself. Buying the best equipment does still not guarantee anything about the product you make on it. check out some hobby metalworking sites to get a grip how to go about these machines.

Thankfully free trade now means you can buy decent used industrial strength equipment from manufacturing businesses going out of business auctions and private salesOften with complete tooling sets and cheaper than you can buy new hobby machines for.

If you have the space Id always recommend going bigger and avoiding the light duty hobby stuff. A cheaply made machine ends up being more costly because you end up buying it two or three times because it either breaks or is under rated for those jobs you want to get done.

We rebuilt a few units, and know the run-out on old machines usually means precision work is difficult. Id often avoid a purchase if we spotted chipped bits, grinder dust, or thick paint where rust should be

I rebuilt the variable speed drive on my 1990 Acra for about $100 in belts and bearings. I shopped around, eBay, Amazon and other sites to find the best prices for name brand pieces. No cheap junk from lowest bidder in Asia.

The old plastic bushings in the sliding half of the split sheave on the motor had broke up and been flung out. Doubleplus ungood annoying because Id just had it all apart and those bushings looked fine, no cracks or wear. Thats what a decade or so of sitting around does to nylon. It goes brittle, even sealed away from light and air inside a pulley bore.

Nope, nuh uh. Turns out that some time in the later 1990s the variable speed belt drive industry decided that a 35mm shaft with a single key for the split sheave on a 3HP motor was obsolete and no manufacturer of parts for these drives would henceforth make any parts for that style of shaft and sheave. *ALL* of the manufacturers went to splined shafts for that power. I had to find some suitable plastic material and turn my own bushings. Works great, should last a very long time since they only do low speed sliding.

Bridgeport has never made a knee mill with more than a 2HP motor, and they used split sheave shafts with a single key. All the parts for *those* are still available, because Bridgeport. Had they made a mill in the early 90s with variable speed and a 3HP motor, then the bushings for a 35mm keyed shaft would still be made, because Bridgeport is Bridgeport and damn near every part for almost every mill made with that name is still available.

if the machine wont take pulley you could take the motor apart and remove the stator (the part with the wire) then dremel out a part of the case and remove the big lump from the shaft and press a pulley onto the shaft and convert an old motor into a jackshaft.

I agree with the poster who said dont dis those combo lathe mills. Ive had one for years and have done amazing stuff on it despite its limitations well worth the $1200 I spent on it. I am just now moving up to separate lathe and mill.

Machining is definitely another world, and every bit as addictive as hacking electronics and software. There is a LOT to learn to do things right (and not get hurt). A book I like a lot (among others and the plethora of online videos from oxtool and tubalcain and others) is Tabletop Machining by Joe Martin of Sherline. I dont own any Sherline equipment, not that that would not be a bad road for some people, but I have learned a lot from this book and value it.

I was planning to get a Sherline lathe after I got my mill and got hooked on all this, but then a full sized lathe came my way and I have no regrets about that. But I use the mill a lot more than the lathe.

Theres talk of horizontal mills, vertical mills, but if your canny you can get hold of a universal one instead. I have a Arno with a 40int taper and 3hp spindle motor, power feeds on all axis. For horizontal mode, slide the over arm forward, put on the supports at the front and set it up. For vertical work, theres a angle drive head that bolts onto the column where the horizontal arbour goes, and that too has 40 int taper in it, so were not talking hobby class cuts here and I have to winch it into place as its a fight getting it on by hand otherwise, although physically its smaller than my bridgeport interact cnc because of how rigid the design is in comparison to a bridgeport, itll take much heavier cuts than the bigger cnc machine. I can literally load it up until the clutch starts to slip or the burning chips get too much to tolerate with my hands on the cranks. It wasnt even big bucks, it was half the price of the manual bridgeports from the j head era when I was looking because huh, whod ever heard of arno. Universal mills also have a table that can be rotated around the cutter to generate gear angles using the horizontal arbour. So you have the advantages of both machines right there in one, with just a bit of time to switch modes.

Ive retrofitted it with a 3 axis dro, best investment ever. I did start making my own out of wixey saw tapes and a home rolled dro, but months became years and then one day my wife said just buy a kit and so I imported a sinpo from the far east. It transforms the machines user friendly-ness, and I can use toolmakers buttons and the markings on the dial just fine thanks, but being able to dial in a bolt circle, and step through it reduces the thinking time and the posibility of making part scrapping mistakes when tired or simply not thinking clearly enough. Also the point about 3ph is valid, a lot of 3ph gear is cheap because not everyone has service or wants the noise of a vfd or generator setup, and generally its better built because its designed for industrial customers to work hard day in and day out 24/7. Im lucky in that my house had 3ph, and I managed to resist the electricity company changing my outdated 3ph supply for a modern monophase one, and now enjoy the advantages it brings.

Oxtool has some good videos as mentioned, and hes also got a book thats worth reading :- Metalworking Sink or Swim: Tips and Tricks for Machinists Theres also machine shop trade secrets, another good book. Invest in some learning before jumping in. Ive had the arno now for 15 years and Im still learning tips and tricks with it, and still developing tooling.

Also, yes you can move without lifting equipment, but you need to have the ability to stop and assess if you are doing something stupid, so if you can snag someone experienced for a machine move and listen to them thats you ahead already. Generally I like to roll things on, slide them along and ease them onto very low trailers, although I remember buying the arno and we had it strapped to a pallet truck and built a ramp out of blocks and sheet to get it in the back of a panel van, so anythings possible if your sensible enough and take your time. If something falls on you, your not going to come out of it well.

If something falls on you, your not going to come out of it well. which is exactly why I didnt recommend that, haha. I think the people who that have the skills to do it without a forklift are going to know that they can anyway.

Chicken and egg though isnt it, how do you get the skills without doing it but being sensible? Pro riggers wont even let you in the premises when its being moved, let alone help along to gain experience. And some stuff is more dangerous than others, wind a mill table right down, take the head off, and skate it along on sheet or bars egyptian style and its a lot easier a move than something nasty like a big radial arm drill. That panel van /machine move was sketchy (in fact the materials we made the ramp from were from behind the back of the sellers garage because I forgot my heavy steel machine ramps and it was a 200 mile journey to go back for them), but the next 3 times I moved it, it was a lot less sketcy. I think forklift unloading can be equally as sketchy, theres always this urge to lift something, I say keep it as close the ground as possible as its got less distance to fall and take your time. I have a backhoe with bucket forks rated at 1t and Id rather unload something I cared about by hand with ramps and comealongs and winches and straps than fork something off with it with its big bouncy agri tyres etc. Maybe learning machine moving should be a subject to itself, but I doubt HaDs lawyers would let it happen for liability reasons :)

Just moving my 600 pound (as I remember right) mill-drill was an adventure. We managed it with 4 guys, an engine hoist and a pickup truck, but there were plenty of opportunities for people to get hurt. It certainly would make sense to hire people with experience and equipment to move something bigger.

Yeah, I had some potential suicides help me with something stupid stupid heavy one time, and did a safety briefing beforehand, emphasising and having them repeat it back, that if it started to topple, get the F out of the way. Anyway, all goes well until we get it to this bench which is supposedly rated to half a ton, and this beast were dealing with is about 800lb, we touch it down lightly with the A frame, honestly just kiss it down, but as soon as we let the straps go slack, one leg of the bench buckles, goes right under, and dumbnuts takes a pace forward to try and HUG the oddly shaped, sharply edged, hunk of metal that is topple sliding towards him, this is I am sure at least 2 seconds after everyone started screaming shes going, look out! anyway, I get a hand to his belt and yank, and he kinda pirouettes around it, came off a bit like a judo throw if you know what I mean, thankfully, he didnt manage to get his arms fully around for it to land on, but he did try to hip check it, and got a slight gash on his thigh.

Ive owned both a Sieg X1 micro-mill (which weighs a hundred pounds soaking wet) and its slightly-bigger brother the X2, and both of them got used for plenty of 6061 and some steel on occasion. The X1 is probably a bad choice if youre working on anything much over a couple inches but it was a lot faster than a file, and the X2 is significantly more capable.

If a refrigerator-sized machine that costs a few grand is no big deal for you then by all means get a Bridgeport, but if you need to make some RC, gun, or robot parts and the small import machines are the best you can do in terms of cash or space, theyre nothing to be ashamed of. Most of the tooling you buy and all of the skills you learn will work fine on a larger/better machine, and theyre usually easy to resell when you decide to do that.

I purchased a cheap Chinese lathe/mill/drill from ShopTask. The process of honing the gibs, aligning EVERYTHING, and changing out the motor and belts for a variable speed 3 phase motor controlled by a single phase converter REALLY taught me a lot about how these things work and the importance of always checking alignment.

Do yourself a favor and purchase some alignment tools like dial indicators with magnetic stands to measure table/spindle alignment and travel. Buy some blank drill rod, clamp it in the spindle and measure the spindle alignment relative to the table. I had to shim my head to align it properly. BUY a DRO if you dont have one. Just do it.

If you are converting to CNC, use the handle dials and the DRO in conjunction to measure backlash ALL the way in X, Y, and Z axis. If it changes when you move the table to the extremes, you probably want to replace the acme/ball screws before you convert.

Feeds and speeds are 33% of the work. 1/3 of your energy goes into measuring, marking, and alignment. The other third goes into the setup. The setup is the work mounting process which needs to be just as rigid as the machine or you have wasted a lot of time and money.

The reality of Asian Iron is there are a few machine tool manufacturers in Taiwan and China who constantly clone each others and European and American machines. Then American importers, or foreign companies that sell here, do a bit of a round robin on who sells what. When Grizzly decides to stop selling their G0731, some other company will have the manufacturer paint them a different color and put their name on it.

A nice thing about Grizzly is they have manuals online for just about everything theyve ever sold. I found out that my Frejoth 1340 metal lathe *was* sold by Grizzly as the G4016. Everyone else who sold that exact same lathe used some variation on 1340, that being the max swing and length between centers. But Grizzly? Noooo. They come up with apparently random model numbers that have nothing to do with any aspect of the machine.

If youve had a yearning for a Hardinge HLV-H lathe, there are now some clones of it with features Hardinge never had a thought of while they were producing that design. Theres one with an electronic gearbox with infinitely variable spindle to lead screw speed ratio, plus of course fixed ratios for threading. Not cheap, not at all, but still a lot lower price than the last of the model Hardinge made new, which had a six figure price.

South Bend has been a division of Grizzly for a while. Those lathes are made in Taiwan by one of the common clone machine foundries, but theyre one that takes extra care with manufacturing. The South Bend lathes are based on common Asian models but with significant differences to make them unique. In the case of the discontinued 8K, a much altered version of the common as crud 820 and 920 clones of the Emco Compact 8, they didnt change the worst parts. It got a beefier bed and completely different headstock. The quick change gearbox and apron were clearly based on the venerable Workshop 9 items. But they went and left the slides and saddle unchanged. The cross slide has a very narrow dovetail and the 8K even used the same flimsy ring with two bolts in T-slots hold down for the toolpost. To make things worse, the drive to the gearbox was via cogged belts instead of being all metal gearing. At the points where making the design better mattered most, they fell on their faces. Tis no wonder it was a poor seller and ended up being clearanced at $1500. South Bend also offers an HLV-H clone but YIPES the price.

Mention could have been made of the difference between a knee mill and a bed mill. A knee mill moves the table up and down while the head remains at a fixed elevation. A bed mill has the table stay as a fixed elevation while the head moves up and down.

The round column drill/mills are a sort of bed mill, but with the round column where the head height cant be changed without losing sideways position, they have a big disadvantage. Smaller benchtop mills tend to be the bed type, with many of them having square or rectangular columns or rails.

Knee mills have come to be mostly clones of the Bridgeport J head model. Theyre the VW Beetle of milling machines. Bridgeport produced the Series II mill, better than the J in every possible way, but like the Super Beetle, it didnt stick around long, and like VW, Bridgeport went back to making the antique design dating back to the 1930s.

The closest youll come to a benchtop knee mill is currently a Grizzly G0728 (G0729 with power feed). Thats the same head as on the G0802 and G0730 (and the other variants from Grizzly) which have taller columns for more knee travel. Far as I have been able to find, every company that has ever sold that mill style has had it with the three different column heights with different bases to put them all close to the same overall height. If youre shopping for a mill in that size class, get the G0730 or same with another name, with the tallest column because you *will* need all that knee travel someday.

I took my bp interact 2hp motor up to 200% speed on one occasion. We were in the next room shifting speed remote in case the frame exploded and the noises coming out the workshop were a bit scary. So be fairly careful how far you overdrive it. Also you may overheat it if you run it very slow with the vfd, as the fan cooling is done off the main spindle. If you are going to do this, its best to have a small motor to drive the head motor cooling fan so it runs full speed even when the main motor is lugging away at low rpms. I kept my backgear in the interact and rigged a microswitch up to the gearshift knob so the cnc control (linuxcnc) knows which gear it is in, knows which way to spin the motor for spindle forward and displays the correct rpm on the screen. If you want more rpm than the gear supports it prompts for it.

Whatever you do, dont buy any old iron if you find it for a good price. I did, but I have a weakness for war machines (just ask me about a certian Prat and Whitney lathe ). Just kidding, I bought a no-name WWII Granite State jig boring machine. It is built with the principles of a jig boring machine without the accurate measuring bits that define a jig boring machine, but it sure is rigid.

Anyway, heres the trick to buying an old iron mill: make sure you can get a common taper. Dont buy anything that uses B&S-7 taper (or really, B&S-any_taper for that matter). You wont find any tooling for reasonable prices besides crappy (but functional) collets from The Little Machine Shop or a B&S-7 to ER-32 adapter from e-Baie.

As someone who has used a Grizzily G8689 (Sieg x2 clone) against 7075, 6061 and wood I highly recommend starting with a tiny machine so that you make your big mistakes on a tiny scale. I did some really dumb things when I was new with that mill and they probably would have cost me dearly if I did them on a huge Bridgeport.

I second that. I bought a large Enco mill with only 2-axis CNC. It was very accurate and sturdy, but weighted over 2500 pounds. When I sold it on Craigslist, the buyer rolled it on pipes like the Egyptinas did with ppyramid rocks and we carefuly nudege it to my driveway where a tow truck picked it up and placed it on his truck bed. Loved the mill, but rarely used it. I now have a custom Sieg mill that can mill out 12x12x12 and does a great job for what I need to do. It runs on a PC and is dirty simple to use. Start with that, then work your way up, as your interest and needs dictate.

Ultimately it barely gets used; the work space is too small for many jobs and its built so light that you have to take very light cuts. While CNC helps me ignore the time consumption, it still deters me from ever using

I just want to point out re: 3 phase power; 3 phase generally means you have some very hefty power requirements. As such, most power companies will run 3 phase to your location for free, as theyre expecting big electric bills in the future off that 3 phase line. So, dont let the lack of 3 phase in, particularly a commercial setting, limit you on what you buy. Residential you might find a little harder to convince the power company that youre going to make it worth their while, of course.

I liked how detailed the explanation for when to buy a new or used milling machine. Being aware of red flags can save both you and your wallet from making not making the best investment. I imagine that what youre planning to use it for will also have an influence as well.

Thank you for all this great information about choosing a milling machine. One thing that really stood out to me is that you say to make sure that you choose a machine that will fit your space. It would be nice to know that it wont take up too much room in the end.

Thanks for pointing out how people should consider getting milling machines with big and rigid frames so that it can drill a hole into solid steel without any problems. My dad is looking to get into the hobby of designing model aircraft dioramas. He thinks he needs a milling machine, so this tip can certainly help him pick a heavy duty one.

When it comes to selecting whether or not to buy machinery that has a spindle, its usually better to get it used since the machine has already been used a lot of times and has proven themselves rather worthy when it comes to proper spindle usage. Another thing to consider is that the spindles spin smoothly as well as sounding good when you run themand shaking it a few times before testing them out is a good idea to see if its properly attached or no. Now that I know how to discern a machine spindle, the best thing I would be able to do with it is to use it carefully since its expensive and should make the cost back that I used for buying it!

It was great that you say to make sure that you choose a machine that will fit your space. My uncle has been thinking of buying a milling machine because his partner closed down his shop. Sins the nearly has space for his own machines, I will recommend him finding a supplier that will work with him with grew cutting solutions.

I like what you said about getting a milling machine with a heavy frame. My boss wants to get some milling done in the coming months. Ill share this information with her so that she can look into her options for getting the right machine.

I can imagine that a business could really benefit from getting the right equipment and help make them more effective so that they can sell more products and do more work. It was interesting to learn about how a vertical mill can take a little longer to do a job but they can be better with versatility and make sure that the cuts can be made on all axes.

the shaker workbench lost art press

As in a lot of other Shaker furniture, the distinctive features of a Shaker workbench are not always immediately obvious. As a utilitarian piece of equipment, the Shaker bench has to meet many of the same requirements as a worldly workbench. There is only so much room for variation and development before such a basic tool becomes over-specialized. Though the Shakers, like their contemporaries, distinguished between joiners or carpenters, who made architectural elements, and cabinetmakers, who made furniture and small goods, the workbenches of these craftsmen were probably quite similar. Chairmaking and boxmaking were separate industries with different workholding requirements. Shaker chairs were a production item, mainly comprised of interchangeable turned parts. Thus the lathe was the primary tool and workholding device. Chairs were clamped in a vise like the one shown below while their seats were woven. Shaker boxes were also mass-produced, and they were assembled on benches that were much smaller and less refined than the workbenches used for furnituremaking or joinery.

The Shaker workbench, like others in the world, has many standard components: a tail vise and dogholes, a front vise, and room for tool storage beneath the top. Likewise, most of the same materials, hand tools and machinery available to the Shakers for workbench making were the same as those used by their worldly counterparts. As a result, similar woods may be found in both Shaker and non-Shaker benches, joined with the same mortise-and-tenon or dovetail joints.

It is unclear exactly when the Shakers began building workbenches. Perhaps a few were brought along when woodworkers joined the fold. (Gideon Turner, an early convert, became a member of New Lebanon in 1788 with 1 Set Carpenters tools & 1 Set Joiners Tools valued at eight pounds.) Or, more likely, makeshift arrangements may have been employed until permanent workshops could be built and proper benches installed. In any case, journal entries and a couple of dated benches indicate that Shakers were building benches by the first or second quarter of the 19th century. This coincides with the period during which most Shaker furniture was built and the stylistic features that distinguish it today were firmly entrenched. Although Shaker life and work became increasingly codified at the same time, no precise description of the proper workbench or its appropriate usage has yet been discovered. (The idea that such a description might exist is not as farfetched as it sounds, considering that the Millennial Laws mandated: Floors in dwelling houses, if stained at all, should be of a reddish yellow, and shop floors should be of a yellowish red.)

Since my first introduction to those two Shaker benches, I have looked at a dozen benches in other Shaker museums Fruitlands in Harvard, Massachusetts, and the Shaker Musemn in Old Chatham, New York as well as a few in private collections. While these represent only a fraction of the total number of Shaker workbenches that must have been made (every Shaker family had a woodworking shop, and the large families, such as the New Lebanon Church Family, had both a joiners and a cabinetmakers shop), certain patterns begin to emerge.

I chose to focus my attention on the Shaker workbench at Hancock Shaker Village, shown on p. 32 [and on the cover, above], for several reasons. It is well made and in good condition and does not appear to have been materially altered. In its dimensions and construction, it is as fine an example of a Shaker bench as any I have seen. And it is the only such bench I am aware of that remains in everyday use in a working, Shaker-style cabinet shop, albeit in an interpretive museum. I will describe details of other Shaker benches I have seen as they differ from the Hancock bench or further an understanding of it.

As my first impression suggested, Shaker benches tend to be massive. The Hancock benchtop is 11 ft. 9 in. long and 38 in. wide. The main body of the top is 3-3/4 in. thick. The smallest Shaker bench I found (at Fruitlands) is only 8 ft. 1 in. long. The largest (at Old Chatham) is 16 ft. 7 in. Most of the others are between 12 ft. and 15 ft. long. Indeed, it would seem that a small Shaker bench would be anything under 10 ft. long-several feet longer than what would be considered a large workbench today. (This may not have been unusual at the time, given the 18th-century Dominy workbenches [p. 13] and the French workbenches described by Roubo [p. 21].)

The top of the Hancock bench is comprised of three separate sections (as shown in the drawing on the facing page), built stoutly and purposefully. The front section is 16 in. wide and laminated from four pieces of 3-3/4-in.-wide maple or birch and a 1-in. strip of pine, glued and bolted together with four handforged bolts. (The 3-3/4-in.-square laminates would have been convenient to work with.) This area houses the dogholes and vises, and functions as the primary worksurface; maple or birch was used on this part of the bench, as it was on all the others Ive seen. (Due to the age and patina of the bench, it is often difficult to determine the exact species of wood used; the woods I describe should be considered educated guesses.)

The midsection of the top is a single chunk of 9-1/4-in.-wide chestnut or oak. Although hard and dense, the open-grained wood provides a rougher benchtop texture than that of the front portion, and was presumably acceptable for a secondary worksurface. The 12-3/4-in.-wide back section of the top is made of knotty, hard pine. Both the middle and back sections are 1-3/4 in. thick, supported by spacers that rest on the base frame. Both ends are covered by simple, bolt-on end caps with captured nuts fed from the underside of the top. No tongue-and-groove or splined joints were used to attach the end caps. They were merely intended to conceal the end grain on the benchtop and, in the case of the end cap on the right end of the bench, to serve as the nut for the tail-vise benchscrew.

The very size of the enormous top offers some interesting clues to Shaker woodworking. Its never big enough, according to Joel Seaman, the cabinetmaker who has been making restoration Shaker furniture on the Hancock bench for over ten years. Seaman could lay out all the parts of a cabinet on the top and still have room to use the vises.

The order and cleanliness of the Shakers is legendary, however, and its unlikely that the benches were built large to accommodate such expansive work habits. (Even the woodshed and tool room of a Shaker brother in Union Village, Ohio, was impeccably organized: every stick of wood was exact in its place . His little work shop exhibited the same care.) In part, bench size may be explained by the institutional nature of the Shaker dwellings and the size of the joinery and furnishings required for them. In every community these buildings are imposing structures, with high ceilings and wide hallways. As shown in the photo below, some of the most remarkable case pieces stand over 8 ft. tall; built-in cupboards, housing dozens of drawers and cabinets, may run floor-to-ceiling and the length of a long hallway. All this work, plus the miles of pegboard circumnavigating the rooms, would have been more easily hand-planed and joined on a long bench. While there was some specialization among Shaker woodworkers, records indicate that a typical woodworkers week would have been spent in a wide variety of pursuits. As the communities stabilized and eventually began to shrink, there would have been less new furniture (apart from chairs for sale) to build. At the same time, fewer craftsmen would have had to perform an even more varied range of tasks.

There is also reason to believe that more than one person worked at the bench at a time. Entries from the journals of Freegift Wells, an Elder and woodworker of considerable stature from Watervliet, New Yorrk, depict what was probably a typical relationship between a cabinetmaker and his apprentice. In these notesWells tells us that he installed a vise at the opposite end of his own workbench for his apprentice, Thomas Almond. There are also frequent references in other Shaker letters and journals to projects undertaken by two or more craftsmen working together.

Without exception, all the Shaker benches Ive seen have an enclosed base, which contributes substantial mass and storage space, while it restricts any clamping to the ends or the narrow overhang along the front edge of the top. One thing I have never seen on a Shaker bench, but which is common on other benches out in the world, is an open tool tray. This tray, whether built into the top or between the stretchers of the base, collects debris and allows tools to knock about, damaging their edges. To an early Shaker, an open tray would have seemed like an open sewer-seductively convenient, perhaps, but unsanitary and hazardous.

Mother Ann could have been lecturing her woodworking followers when she said: take good care of what you have. Provide places for your things, so that you may know where to find them at any time, day or by night . ,Just as the walls of the Shakers dormitories are lined with built-in cupboards, so their workbenches are equipped with substantial cabinets that fully occupy the area between the legs and beneath the top. They are also unique in that the drawers and cabinets are usually built into the base framework, a tedious and exacting process. It would have been much easier to support the top with a basic four-leg structure and to install an independent tool-cabinet carcase between them. In the case of the Shaker workbenches I have seen, the members of the carcase itself-posts, drawer dividers and the frame-and-panel ends-generally function as the legs and stretchers of the workbench. This may have been preferred for aesthetic reasons, or simply to lend continuous support to such a large worksurface.

On the Hancock bench, like most of the others, the base is divided into a succession of drawers that progress in size from the smallest on the top to the largest on the bottom. A portion of the base consists of open shelves, which are reserved for storage of items that wont fit in the drawers (large tools or specially prepared stock, perhaps). These areas are always enclosed by doors. The insides of the door panels on the Hancock bench display remnants of different-color paint, indicating that they were borrowed from some other project and reincarnated in the workbench.

The order and cleanliness provided by the enclosed base cabinet had many practical dividends for the workbench. The problems of racking and sliding, which are inherent in an open-frame base, are automatically resolved by the rigidity of the casework and the sheer weight of the structure. Loaded with tools, as it presumably was, the cabinet anchored the whole bench to the floor and to move it would have taken a small army. Workbench storage would have made it easier to keep track of tools in a large community. No one should take tools, belonging in charge of others, without obtaining liberty for the same , the Millennial Laws decreed. The wicked borrow and never return.

Ive been reading the workbench book trying to distill those elements I want for my bench. I was at the big box store getting materials for a different project and had been talking to my son about my ideas for a bench design. He left and came back with the DIY galvanized metal bench hardware kit where You just add 2x4s for a complete woodworkers bench! To be fair he is an aerospace engineer and to him that solved the problem but I told him he just didnt understand.

best bench vise - static and sturdy clutch - diy tool expert

Wood-workers and we hobbyists need a second, even a third helping hand while working with larger surfaces, wood, or metals. And a bench vise serves you that purpose. Because slipping, damage due to falling is common terms. And you need stability and security in this type of work.

To an untrained eye, every bench vise is the same. But specifications, details are what keeps you at confusion. A perfect bench vise provides you optimal stability and a strict surface to work on. Because a trembling or a shaking one is not you want.

So rather than going for the traditional and best ones, opt for the ones suiting your task, while maintaining its traditional and optimum features. And we all know that while shopping we can be pretty easily overwhelmed by the various options of bench vises.

So we have assembled the traditional and top-notch bench vises that you might want to have a look. Whatever you buy, you need an informing elaboration. Thats why we have invited you here. So lets hop right into the best bench vise.

Mounting a vise may seem tiresome, with a perfect guide, you will grasp it pretty easily. Now the process may vary depending on the structure and fundamental components of the bench vise. Though it has an inadequate impact.

Any bench vise shouldnt be your choice, your preference should be which suits your task and your work-piece the most. And that, our fellow readers is what you will be stepping in the next few minutes.

Because when you are off to buy a product in the market you are left with multiple options which get you confused. But you only want the one which suits your task or get your job done pretty efficiently and quickly. Lets hop in!!

This measurement comes from the top of the jaws of the vise to the top of the slide below it. When you have a throat depth that is longer, then it allows you to hold larger pieces more securely as well.

Without mounting, a bench vise is useless. And an easy and less friction mounting gives you the upper hand. If you are going for the bolt-type mounting, make sure there are 4 bolts to allow less pressure. But if you are going for a clamp type, make sure that it includes enhanced security.

The quick-release of a bench vise means that you dont have to twist the spindle manually each time you want to release an object from its jaws. This makes the process quicker and easier. Be advised to check if the quick release is something that particularly interests you.

A vise with jaws that are padded in order to hold lumber without denting it is taken as a woodworking vise. A woodworking vise is different from a bench vise in size and also a slight difference in the mechanism. Woodworking vise holds together larger projects, even the size of doors.

Woodworking vise may include piercing through the wood to hold it together, where, on the other hand, a bench vise holds together smaller objects but never needs to pierce through the wood. Both of the vises have parallel jaws, but in case of woodworking vise, both of the jaws are fixed.

But on the other hand, one jaw is fixed and the other is moveable in cases of a bench vise. In cases of a bench vise, the jaws are tightened through a single screw, but on the other hand, woodworking vises are tightened with 3 larger rods or screws (number may vary due to models)

A rather fundamental difference between a woodworking vise and a bench vise can be carried pretty easily (may vary due to models). In summation, because of the varying models, it cannot be stated significantly, but we have proposed a general discussion for your information.

A bench vise is also known as a woodworking tool which is usually a tool made of metal or wood. Their sole purpose is to hold the object underneath, with grip, and thereby work on the object. A bench vise is basically used for enhanced stability and to allow a firm grasp.

A bench vise holds together a block of wood or any kind of object with the parallel jaws and can adapt to any work-piece through rotating, tilting at a certain angle. This can save your other hand from the dangers of holding down the material while you cut with your other hand.

Here we have included some of the best bench vises to get you started, along with the features that will catch your attention. These stand out among all the other ones for their unique structures. Lets take a look.

The Yost LV-4 Home Vise 4-1/2 is a lightweight duty bench vise weighing less than 10 pounds. It adapts to any work-piece as the swivel base (Aswivelis a connection that allows the connected object to rotate horizontally or vertically) allows the vise to rotate 240 degrees showing unique versatility.

It holds 0. 6 D to 1. 85 D pipes and tubes, which makes it efficient for using larger tools. With a jaw width of 4-1/2 and the jaw opening is 3. To hold a larger tool steady, this model has come up with a throat depth of 2.6.

This vise features 4 mounting tabs with bolts measuring 3/8 x table thickness. The vise is painted with a durable blue powder coat which helps it to last longer than traditional bench vises.The vise is manufactured from cast iron featuring steel vise jaws, threaded spindle assembly, and a chrome lockdown.

The Yost Vises 465 6.5 Heavy-Duty Utility Combination Pipe and Bench Vise is a heavy-duty bench vise with higher stability. Its exclusive interlocking gear base securely attaches the bench vise to your work-piece or mounting surface.

This model has improved in slippage casualties and is immune to scratching or any kind of abrasion. Engineered with optimal safety this model has a high clamp force of 4,950 lb. It features a torque rating of 116 ft-lb which strongly grips any metalwork, wood-working projects.

It even works quite efficiently in cases of car repairs, pipework, and other home or industrial precision vice projects. It can adapt to any work-piece through rotating 360 degrees with its base with exclusive interlocking geared base and 2-point lockdown.

This ensures maximum stability and alignment for light or even heavy-duty work. This model consists of large capacity and also replaceable hardened steel serrated top jaws. The grooved pipe jaws firmly grasp irregular and circular work-pieces in place along with standard metal sheets.

The Yost Vises 465 6.5 Heavy-Duty Utility Combination Pipe and Bench Vise is a prudent choice, yet arises a certain durable issue, as it dulls due to long-time use and the clip that holds the spring to push the jaws apart breaks.

The Bessey BVVB Vacuum Base Vise has come up with an advanced quality structural component with vertical and horizontal rotation. The vacuum base mounts on any smooth surface. The vacuum baseis designed to hold onto any surface firmly. V-grooved jaws are designed to grasp circular objects.

This vise can be rotated 360 degrees and pivoted 9 degrees to adapt while working optimally without even removing clamped part of the vise jaws. The enhanced robust jaw caps are installed to hold work-pieces without marring which allows the user to have an efficient interface.

This vise has also improved on durability by including steel structure and die-cast parts. The easy suction release and lightweight aluminum construction allow maximum portability making this a great hobby vise to paint figurines, work on RC cars or other small projects.

The rubber jaws allow you to have a non-abrasive finish after holding together even for quite a long time. The rotating handle is great in length so that you have a friendly and comfortable rotating with less friction.

As it is said with great size comes great difficulties, being a large vise it is sometimes tiresome to get it to stick on any work-piece. Apart from that, the machining on the vice is not very precise and there is a lot of play when tightening or loosening.

The PanaVise Model 201 Junior Miniature Vise comes up with a pretty unique and versatile design for light work. The single knob is quite comfortable to handle smaller objects and it controls movement through 3 planes by tilting 210 degrees, 360 turns along with a 360 rotation.

The robust structure of the knob controls the jaw pressure for delicate and fragile work. The furrow jaws are precise for holding small objects and are made of reinforced thermal composite plastic. This vise has an increased temperature tolerant feature of 350F with variation up to 450F.

Also, this vise includes a limited lifetime warranty which is quite a relief in cases of maintenance. It offers great flexibility for its mounting possibilities. The zinc base included can be used as stand-alone support when working with light items or can be used to secure the vise permanently to a flat surface.

With a vise opening of 2.875 (73 mm), and jaw width of 1 (25.4 mm), and jaw height of 2 (50.8 mm) including a 4.3125 (109.5 mm) diameter bolt circle this vise shows quite an efficiency in household work-pieces.

Resembling the structural design of a previous vise the Wilton 11104 Wilton Bench Vise has come up with enhanced robust jaws. It is constructed from very high-quality steel. And to improve on the grip it includes a double lock-down providing a large anvil work surface.

It is made from 30,000 PSI gray cast iron for better durability. It includes grooved steel jaws for improved steadiness and a firm grip. This bench vise boasts a 4 jaw width. The swivel rotates up to 180 degrees with the opening capacity of maximum 4.

The jaw throat depth being 2-4 allows you to work at ease with larger work-pieces. It includes a lifetime warranty ensuring you of stress-free maintenance. This 4 standard bolted bench vise can be installed in minutes.

The structural component of this bench vise being hardened still is advantageous in comparison to other cast-iron vises and it is reflected in the units weight which is 38.8lbs. Clamping capacity of 6-inches by 6-inches, theres plenty of room for this vise to grip big objects. Whats more, the vise jaws are replaceable.

The TEKTON 4-Inch Swivel Bench Vise somewhat resembles our previous model but with varying structure and fundamental components. This bench vise is constructed with cast iron (30,000 PSI tensile strength), giving it more strength and firm grip.

It includes a 120degrees swivel base with a dual lock-down nut positioned perfectly for adjusting to your work-piece. It includes 3 mounting holes to workbench ease and securely. It has a jaw width of 4 and the maximum jaw opening of 3. The throat depth being 2-3 helps you with a larger work-piece.

The polished steel anvil offers a smooth, consistent work surface for shaping metal pieces. The acme-threaded screw glides smoothly without binding. The serrated steel jaws provide a very steady and non-slip grip which makes work that little bit easier.

The DeWalt DXCMWSV4 4.5 In. Heavy-Duty WORKSHOP Bench Vise is an ideal and versatile bench vise for home, shop and constructor usage. It shows better durability and enhanced dependability. This vise is constructed from 30,000 PSI cast iron. This 4 bench vise can rotate vertically as well as horizontally.

The jaws are constructed with hardened steel and these micro-grooved jaws are replaceable. These jaws provide a stronger grip once clamped in place. The built-in cast iron jaws provide easy clamping of pipe and other circular metals.

This bench vise consists of a large anvil work surface on the back and is quite efficient for the hammering and shaping of metal pieces. The swivel base can rotate to 210 degrees allowing the vise to be positioned for the work-pieces to be clamped with ease.

This bench vise shows greater holding power. The clamping force is 3,080 lbs. The steel main screws are machined with rolled threads and are wear-resistant which provides smooth work. This bench vise includes a limited lifetime warranty which is quite a relief in maintenance.

The DeWalt DXCMWSV4 4.5 In. Heavy-Duty WORKSHOP Bench Vise shows much strength, yet sometimes when you try to tighten it on a hammer, the rod bents. The vise itself is good, the locking screw is not so impressive.

The current rage over them is largely due to three factors: One, theyre American-made, which is becoming more and more of a rarity these days. Two, while Wiltons can still be had new, theyre hugely expensive, where even a little 4 one can run $600. Find an old one, fix it up, and youve saved a bundle.

Choosing a Bench ViseStep 1: Jaw Width. The jaw width is key in selecting. Step 2: Jaw Opening. If you wanna grip big steel pipes, you need a big opening. Step 3: Mounting. Most vises are mounted using 3 or 4 bolts. Step 4: Pipe, Bench or Combo. A serrated bench jaw can easily hold pipe and rectangular objects. Step 5: Mounting.

For general household DIY, a 4- to 5-inch vise is large enough to handle most tasks. (This measurement is the length of the jaws from end to end and is maximum amount of contact your vise has with the workpiece.)

American Made Bench, Machinist & Woodworking VisesBenchcrafted. Benchcrafted was founded in 2005 producing some of the finest workbench hardware available anywhere. Conquest Industries. Hovarter Custom Vise. Lake Erie Toolworks. Milwaukee Tool & Equipment Company. Orange Vise Co. Wilton Tools. Yost Vices.

The high quality Wilton vises are of the bullet style, in the Tradesman (budget), Machinist (classic), and Combination (pipe/bench) lines. If you want a new one, your best bet would be to get one from when they have their next 25% or 30% off sale. Also consider getting a smaller vise.

The Wilton Bullet Vise family has improved over the years but has always maintained the same high quality and integrity since 1941. The Wilton Combo Pipe & Bench and Machinist Vises are proudly built in the USA.

You can tell the age of the vise by looking at the bottom of the guide rail (with the vise opened wide). As can be seen, it is stamped with 4-53. Wilton provided a 5 year warranty on their vises with the expiration of the warranty stamped on the vise, so this vise was made in April of 1948.

The type of vise most commonly used as a woodworking vise is the bench vise. Bench vises do not necessarily need to be attached to workbenchesas long as the working surface is stable, a bench vise can be attached either directly to the surface or the side.

Ans: Avicehas two parallel jaws thatworktogether to firmly clamp an object and hold it in place. The working procedure is quite similar to a drill press vise except for the latter having a flat base.

Ans: Thismeasurementis the length of the jaws from end to end and is the maximum amount of contact yourvisehas with the workpiece. The throat depth,measuredfrom the top of the jaws to the top of the slide below it, is also something to consider.

There are various reasons why these are becoming trendier than all other alternatives present in the market like easy installation, firm grasp, portable feature. Due to these alarming features, these are considered to be the best among the other ones.

These best bench vises provide you firm grasp, enhanced stability, and corrosion-free work-piece. So now, if youre looking for something robust but small, then the PanaVise Model 201 Junior Miniature Vise is a prudent choice as it works with a single knob and is quite efficient for smaller objects.

But also if you are looking for a heavy-duty bench vise with a great clamping force then the DeWalt DXCMWSV4 4.5 In. Heavy-Duty WORKSHOP Bench Vise will just suffice. As it has a clamping force of 3,080 lbs.

And it is constructed from high-strength steel and cast iron components with micro-grooved, replaceable steel jaws. We hope you have found your bench vise and have already bought it, if not, what are you waiting for, hurry to your nearest shop.

forged bench vise - fireball tool

This vise has a specially designed 4 point swivel base designed to match up with holes on most common welding tables. Whether you have a table with 5/8" or 16 mm holes, if the spacing is on 2" centers this vise will fit. You can quickly bolt and unbolt the vise anywhere on the table as needed. When mounted in the correct orientation, the back jaw will hang over the edge of the table, allowing you to clamp tall objects in the vise.

You can use your own bolts to mount this vise to a work table or other workbench, or you can also purchase with our 5/8" diameter shoulder bolts for bolting to welding tables. Purchase the shorter bolts for 1/4" thick tables, or longer bolts for tables between 1/2" - 3/4".

This vise is made from forged steel rather than cast iron, which has a higher yield strength for a comparable size. The 90,000 PSI tensile strength of these forgings allow the vise to be lightweight but with a comparable strength to vises with twice the weight. Since it's welded together, if you ever take things a little too far with a cheater bar you can repair it relatively easily.

These are sold as a pair, 4" and 5" models available, use them for holding delicate parts. As far as we know, we are the only company which sells both a vise and machined copper jaws made for those vises. Please note, these jaws are made from solid copper bar stock, which means they are extremely soft and will tarnish. We think they're a great addition to the vise, but it's a part which is meant to take wear.

When I received this vise it exceeded my expectations. Build quality is fantastic for this price. The action is very smooth, and the power is enormous. The jaws are square and parallel, with excellent holding power. The vise shipped to Atlanta in only 3 days. It came bagged and double-boxed; the inner box had a good bit of damage, but the outer box was perfect upon arrival. The vise arrived already lubricated, and thankfully wasnt covered in an annoying coating (e.g. cosmoline). I had 4 cast iron vise that I was using as a press with a breaker bar to install connecting rod bolts. It was very difficult, and I snapped the main screw after only 4 rods. I ordered this vise as a replacement. The butter-smooth action made things easy - I almost didnt have to use the breaker bar, but I did, and this vise didnt even flinch. Applying 80 ft-lbs to the handle, I was also able to go back and reapply pressure to the completed rods to make sure I was fully seated. I was then able to loosen the jaws by hand! There is a 4 and 6 version of this vise out there with a Capri branding. Fireball lists the 4 for a better price. The 6 is a compelling option as it has an 8 opening capacity, but its $100 more than this Fireball 5 version. I think the Fireball is in the sweet spot for price vs performance. I am very satisfied!!

First, the vise is amazing. I've been using a beatup, cheap vise for years, and the Fireball vise is a huge upgrade. Very happy with the purchase, pause one minor issue. When I purchased the vise in May 2021, the listing had copper jaws in the listing with no option to purchase the copper jaws separately, so it appeared to me that they would be included. That is not the case. The copper jaws have been discontinued and they were not part of the purchase. As of May 17, 2021, the listing still has the copper jaws in the images for the listing. The vise is still a great value for the cost without the copper jaws, but I was dissapointed that I have to figure something out now for when I don't want to damage a work piece. Overall, happy customer.

Am really pleased with this vice! It sure is purdy and works great. The quality of the vise is outstanding. Bought it to use on my Arcflat weld table. It bolts right up as advertised. Wish I had purchased the shoulder bolts to go with it - was hesitant because the table is 3/8" thick and saw no bolts listed for a table of this thickness. need to call Fireball and see if they have something that will work.

Seems to be good quality. It would be convenient to move around on the table so that you can position it in atypical places. I wish a 6" and 8" model were offered. Smaller than I would prefer.

This is the best vice you can buy out there pound for pound and dollar for dollar. I love mine and it has held up great over the past year or so I have owned it. Restoring an old school vice is always your best bet with these things, but this vice is your second best option if you just want to buy a solution new and ready to go out of the box.

I have to say that I'm impressed. Almost no side to side movement of the jaw when open and the jaws close evenly and smoothly. Swivels smoothly and locks down tight. The optional bolts fit my Certi-Flat table perfectly. I'd been looking for a vice that would bolt up to the table for some time and when I saw Jason's video I jumped at the chance. Glad I did.

I've been looking for an affordable forged vise to replace a cast vise that broke with very little use. This is super burly! I am very impressed at the build quality and expect it last last a long time.

vises heavy duty rotating hand tools | bizrate

Diamond serrated jaws for secure grip and dual lock downs for easy positioning Multi-jaw bench vise with swivel base and head to provide clamping action for heavy-duty applications 360-degree swivel base adjusts the direction of the jaws ... more

Features:The clamp made of aluminum alloy and surface is sprayed with plastic, which is strong and durable.Rubber jaw design, width and narrowness are adjustable, elastic rubber protects the product from damage.360 degree rotation shaft ... more

Features:The clamp made of aluminum alloy and surface is sprayed with plastic, which is strong and durable.Rubber jaw design, width and narrowness are adjustable, elastic rubber protects the product from damage.360 degree rotation shaft ... more

Rotating Vise, Duty Rating - Vises Standard Duty, Jaw Width - Vises 5 in, Max. Opening - Vises 5 1/2 in, Throat Depth - Vises 3 1/4 in, Deep Throat No, Base Type - Vises Swivel, Pipe Jaw Included Yes, Pipe Capacity - Vises 1/4 in to 2 in, ... more

5-1/4" in. Jaw Opening, 2-3/8 in. Throat Depth Durable powder coat finish and chrome plated hardware 360 swivel base with 3 mounting holes and 2 lockdowns Polished built-in anvil: 3-5/8" x 3-1/2" Heavy duty durable design for increased ... more

Multi-Jaw Rotating Vise, Duty Rating - Vises Standard Duty, Jaw Width - Vises 5 in, Max. Opening - Vises 4 in, Throat Depth - Vises 3 1/2 in, Deep Throat No, Base Type - Vises Swivel, Pipe Jaw Included Yes, Pipe Capacity - Vises 1/4 in to ... more

Combination Vise, Duty Rating - Vises Heavy Duty, Jaw Width - Vises 5 in, Max. Opening - Vises 8 in, Throat Depth - Vises 3 1/2 in, Deep Throat No, Base Type - Vises Swivel, Pipe Jaw Included Yes, Pipe Capacity - Vises 1/2 in to 3-1/2 in, ... more

Heavy Duty Fixturing Head, For Use With Mfr. Model Number 400, Includes (4) Universal Slots 0.29 in Wide for Attaching Forms, Type Bench Vise, Material Cast Aluminum, For Use With Mfg. No. 400, Impact Rated No more

The Best Universal Bench Vise For Home Craftsmen, Essential tools For Fitter With 3-inch jaw opening and 2.4 inch throat depth, it's going to handle almost anything the typical homeowner will need it for. 360-degree swivel base adjusts the ... more

Features:The clamp made of aluminum alloy and surface is sprayed with plastic, which is strong and durable.Rubber jaw design, width and narrowness are adjustable, elastic rubber protects the product from damage.360 degree rotation shaft ... more

Features:The clamp made of aluminum alloy and surface is sprayed with plastic, which is strong and durable.Rubber jaw design, width and narrowness are adjustable, elastic rubber protects the product from damage.360 degree rotation shaft ... more

The Yost 750DI weighs up to 50% more than the competition. The ductile iron body is 2X stronger than cast iron Vises. Extreme Grip Machinist Jaws feature deeper serrations to grip parts better. Self Align Pipe Jaws conform to the part they ... more

Wilton Mechanics Pro Vises are designed and built using premium materials for unbeatable durability. Featuring an enclosed spindle, precision slide bar, innovative thrust bearing, 360 swivel, plus Wiltons lifetime warrantyyoull never want ... more

Contains 6" wide jaws, 5.7" jaw opening, and 4.2" throat depth Made of heavy-duty ductile iron (60,000 psi) and boasts 6,600 lbs. of clamping force Head rotates 360 degrees and can be locked in w/pull-pin at 12 points, each within 30 ... more

Opening 6 1/2" Pipe capacity 1/8" - 2 /12" Precision ground & induction hardened anvil surface Extra long steel alloy handles with rubber stoppers Perfect parallel design, virtually no side or end play Stationary jaw steel scrapers clear ... more

Opening 7" Pipe capacity 1/8" - 4 1/2" Precision ground & induction hardened anvil surface Extra long steel alloy handles with rubber stoppers Perfect parallel design, virtually no side or end play Stationary jaw steel scrapers clear ... more

High-quality grey cast iron machined to close tolerances will not distort under high pressure. Provides more than 3000 pounds of clamping pressure. Smooth, dependable action from long barreled, unbreakable nut dovetailed into body. Main ... more

Captured safety jaw prevents slide from falling out during heavy-duty use Swivel base maneuvers into position quickly and easily Anvil and pipe jaws incorporated for a sturdy grip Aggressive steel jaws maintain a secure hold on clamped ... more

5-inch by 3/4-inch grated jaws open up to 6 inches wide Swiveling base pivots over 120 degrees Constructed from heavy duty 36, 000 PSI cast iron Over 2950 pounds of clamping force tightly secure your workpiece in place Features an onboard ... more

5-inch crosscut jaws open up to 5 inches wide with a 2. 75-inch throat depth Lockable base swivels a full 360 degrees Constructed from heavy duty cast iron Creates up to 5500 pounds of clamping force Features an anvil with milled face for ... more

3-3/8 inch opening capacity 5 inch jaw width 3-1/2 inch throat depth Three different styles of jaws can be rotated 360 degrees to any work position and securely locked The entire vise swivels a full 360 degrees and can be securely locked ... more

Designed to Perform. Built to Last. To ensure long-lasting durability and performance, we start by using only premium quality raw materials like Chrome Vanadium Alloy, Chrome Nickel and High Carbon Tool Steel. We employ the latest in ... more

Versatile bench-mount design has a 6-inch top jaw width and throat depth is 3-inches to provide clamping action for light-duty applications Convenient 360-degree swivel base with 2 lockdown adjusts the direction of the jaws for proper ... more

Heavy duty 30,000 PSI castings with durable powder coat finish Replaceable hardened steel jaws with permanent pipe jaws and polished anvil 270 locking swivel base with four reinforced anchor points more

Opening 4 1/4" Pipe capacity 1/8" - 1 1/4" Precision ground & induction hardened anvil surface Extra long steel alloy handles with rubber stoppers Perfect parallel design, virtually no side or end play Stationary jaw steel scrapers clear ... more

4-inch by 3/4-inch grated jaws open up to 5-1/8 inches wide Swiveling base pivots over 130 degrees Constructed from heavy duty 36, 000 PSI cast iron Over 2440 pounds of clamping force tightly secure your workpiece in place Features an ... more

Brand Introduction VEVOR is a leading brand that specializes in equipment and tools. Along with thousands of motivated employees, VEVOR is dedicated to providing our customers with tough equipment & tools at incredibly low prices. Today, ... more

Features:Vise jaws are heightened and widened for more clamping force in order to keep workpiece more stable during machining.The guiding design for the rod ensures a steady, smooth movement of jaw without deviation.The vise body is made ... more

360-degree swivel base adjusts the direction of the jaws for proper placement and locks in place360-degree swivel base adjusts the direction of the jaws for proper placement and locks in placeCast steel body is painted black for mild ... more

Heavy Duty Fixturing Head, For Use With Mfr. Model Number 400, Includes (4) Universal Slots 0.29 in Wide for Attaching Forms, Type Bench Vise, Material Cast Aluminum, For Use With Mfg. No. 400, Impact Rated NoFeaturesMaterial: Cast ... more

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shaker workbench | 1910 craftsman

I can imagine a happy retirement volunteering in the cabinet shop at Hancock Shaker Village, if only because it would allow working at one of the shops massive workbenches. These benches are typical of the form, with a wide top over a storage base. A tail vise and leg vise (supplemented by a sliding dead man) provide workholding.

My personal bench is a scaled-down version of the Roubo as documented by Christopher Schwarz in an issue of Woodworking Magazine and later in Workbenches: From Design & Theory to Construction & Use. It has served me well, but there are times when I would prefer enclosed storage rather than its single open shelf.

modified roubo is the ultimate workbench - finewoodworking

Synopsis: When Jeff Miller built a small bench about a year ago to test two new vises from BenchCrafted, he little realized he would love the vises so much hed soon be building a full-size bench to live up to their potential. The leg vise and wagon vise held more securely and were easier to adjust than any other vises he had used. So to showcase these powerhouses, he built a modified Roubo bench with a beefy base, a heavy top, and blocky legs flush to the front edge of the benchtop. Heres how to make one of your own, plus tips for installing these two excellent vises.

Most woodworkers build only one workbench. Ive had the luxury of building seven so far. Why so many? Partly because I need extra benches in my shop for teaching classes. But also because I love having benches that excel at holding different kinds of work.

With all the different benches and vises in my shop, I thought Id experienced about everything in the realm of workbenches. But a year ago I built a small bench to test out two new vises from BenchCrafted that had caught my eyeone a leg vise and the other a wagon vise (see Tools & Materials, FWW #225). Both are based on traditional designs but updated with wheel-style handles and acme threads, and built to exceptional standards of quality. For all-around work-holding, these vises were a revelation. They held more securely and were easier to adjust than any other vises Ive used. Spin the wheel with one finger and the vises closed on a workpiece with a convincing thonk. They were also easier to install than many other vises. Before Id had the use of the new bench for a month, it had become my favorite, and I decided that I needed to make a full-size version using BenchCrafted vise hardware.

The bench I built is a modified Roubostyle with a very heavy top and a beefy base. What makes it a Roubo (Andr Jacob Roubo was a French cabinetmaker in the 1700s who wrote an influential treatise on woodworking) is the massive size, the blocky legs flush to the front edge of the benchtop, and the leg vise, a centuries-old style with a huge jaw that offers superb clamping pressure and lots of space for the workpiece. To function properly, a leg vise requires that the front edge of the benchtop be in the same plane with the front face of the leg.

The vise screw is 8 in. below the surface of the bench, allowing the vise to accommodate very large workpieces, with the vise jaw, leg, and edge of the bench providing a solid grip unmatched by other vises. however, to do so, the leg vise incorporates an adjustable parallel guide at the bottom that must be set to roughly the thickness of the workpiece with a removable pin. The extra step takes a little getting used to, but the results are well worth it. BenchCrafted will soon have a new version of the leg vise available, at a higher price, with a scissor mechanism that will eliminate this step.

When Jeff Miller built a small bench to test two new vises from BenchCrafted, little did he realize that he would love the vises so much, hed soon build a full-size bench to live up to their potential. Both the leg vise and wagon vise hold more securely and are easier to adjust than any other vises he has used. So to showcase these powerhouses, he built this modified Roubo bench with a beefy base, a heavy top, and blocky legs flush to the front edge of the benchtop.

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