Training is always good, no matter what your skill level is. If you have a local vocational school, ask the instructor if you can audit the class- explain that you have your own machine, so you won't take away any machine time from the paying students. If this is not practical, maybe you have a machinist friend who will offer some advice. In either case, spend some time learning the machine in its manual mode. Do some projects and learn the machine's limitations in speed and power. I'm sure its tempting to jump right into CNC mode, but if you don't have that basic knowledge, you are going to ruin a lot of parts and tools. I had an older Shoptask before I bought the Patriot, so I got my basic skill level up and made a lot of parts ( and money) with the old machine. The Patriot has a lot of advanced features that it didn't have. I am still researching the CNC option trying to decide to buy or build it myself. This forum has a lot of good info if you search it out.