The following will just catch this thread up to what I started in my other thread.
I've decided to get a big mill to handle some heavy duty milling jobs in steel. An X3 would not be much of an upgrade over the X2, it's still light duty at best when it comes to steel cutting. I don't have room in my basement shop for a kneemill or I would have bought one of the used ones from work years ago. The Rong Fu-45 is the next best thing to a kneemill. There are many clones made out there sold by many companies, I'll provide an Excel page that lists the 10 that I looked at.
The Industrial Hobbies mill is the king with much more X and Y travels than the standard RF-45 but the cost is about $1000 more. Don't think I can justify that much more money for travels I don't really need. The IH has about 30 in. X and 12 in. Y versus 22 in. X and 8 in. Y for the RF-45's.
Bet I could massage a little more out of them anyhow. There is an IH clone at Machine Tool Warehouse in Canada for about $400 less but with extra shipping costs it may be near the same,
I have an email sent for shipping costs. I want it delivered before Xmas since I have 2 weeks off to play around with it so that may change my choice. My first choice was the ZAY7045FG from Lathemaster.com but it seems thay won't have any in stock till Feb. '10, dealbreaker. A couple others have the basic mill at a similar price ($1500-1600). I'm leaning toward the Grizzly G0484 right now, It costs more but comes with a stand, X axis power feed, powered Z and a work light.
Add my Shumatech DRO and it will be ready to go, I have no plan to CNC it anytime soon.
Should know more in a week or so.