Hi, as the topic suggests I'm a complete newb to machining. I really want to get some machine equipment so that I can make my own custom parts (because I work on machines a lot). Ufortunatly... Being that I'm going to be in college for atleast another 4 years, I have very little money.
So... I was looking into getting this 3 in 1 from Harbor frieght: http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=39743
But after searching around on this forum I hear that they are not so accurate. So my first question is: How accurate do I need to be? (I'll tell what I want to make at the end of the post).
Secondly... If this is junk, where can I find something else about the same price range that is decent?
Third... Can I replace that lathe head with one that will hold atleast a 5 or 6 inch piece? I looked over it at the actual store. The head looks like it bolts on with 3 or 4 bolts. It that a standard type of thing?
Fourth... Can I lathe/mill steel with that? Is it powerful enough?
That's all I can think of rigth now. So here are some of the things that I want to make:
Hub adapters for disc brakes
Adjustable jet screws and seats
Milling of small engine heads.
Custom gears (I'm guessing this might be possible)
Pistons/cylinders (I think I might need a spinning table for this)
I'm into everything from small engines to robots. Lots of times I end up using my current tools to make more advanced tools, to make more advanced tools. So... I really just need to be able to make stuff. The more custom parts I can make the happier I will be. Most of the time I end up making things out of scrap steel or aluminum, just because it's free and available. I recently got a wirefeed welder which has been a big help.
So... I need something. What would you guys suggest for that price range? Do I need to buy extra stuff to make it work? Does it come with cutters, and all of that type of thing?
Thanks in advance for all of your help.