CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?


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Thread: CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?

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    Default CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?

    Just wanted to hear some opinions from the crowd. What is a better mill for an all out cnc conversion (cnc, power drawbar, atc ...), a BF20 or an SX3? Both are available near me, and the SX3 is $100 more. I've read a fair bit about the process and I feel confident that I will be successful in doing this, but which path do you believe will yield a better end product?

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    Default Re: CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?

    Forgetting about CNC for a moment, I've got a Seig SX3 and my supplier dropped the product and took up the BF20. From what I've seen in their showroom, my SX3 is a superior machine, easily worth an extra $100. I took delivery of a Chinese lathe the same day as my SX3 and the Seig reeked of quality in comparison straight out of the crate.

    A friend has a SX3 CNC mill and does some really nice stuff with it. There have been many conversion kits developed for it and plenty of examples online. I think I would go that way myself.

    Rod Webster
    www.vehiclemods.net.au


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    Default Re: CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?

    Thanks for your response. It seems like there are a lot of both of these machines out there. I am not at all concerned about the price difference. For those that have purchased and converted either one, I would love to hear what you have to say.



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    Default Re: CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?

    I've done a PM-25 which is a little bigger brother to the G0704/BF-20 machines (working on a WMD-30 now... even bigger brother). I've also helped out with a converted X3 machine a few years back. There are a few things I like better on the X3. It's got more mass overall and it's a bit easier to mount to with most surfaces being straight-ish. I like that it had the electronics in the head, but not sure that would be so great in a conversion. There was a lot I didn't like. It's got a short table, the multi-set-screw gib adjustment SUCKS! The handwheels were crappy but that would not be a concern after conversion. The open U column was not a good feature, but the bolt-on-the-back column of the BF-20 and 25 were not exactly ideal either.

    I will remark that my PM-25 although weighing in less than the his X3, could take more cut without chatter and vibration. He had to run slower and smaller cuts than I did on the same materials. I suspect some of that was the insane difficulty in adjusting his gibbs to eliminate wiggle without binding up.

    I would personally not go with an X3 after helping convert one. I preferred the longer table on my PM-25 and the larger Y travel. I preferred it's smoother feeling motion and that translated into higher rapids on my machine using smaller X/Y motors than the other guy was.

    There have probably been updates since this, I looked at it probably almost 6 years ago now. That was the impression I had at the time though.

    CNC: Making incorrect parts and breaking stuff, faster and with greater precision.


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    Default Re: CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?

    Thank you for not saying "it depends upon the application". I have seen a few people ask this question, and not many answers talk about the differences between the two mills, which to me seem quite comparable in the "can I get it through my back door?" market.



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CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?
CNC conversion... BF20 or SX3?