Little question.


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  1. #1
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    Default Little question.

    A little about me and then my question.

    Four weeks before I graduated high school I was offered a job in a machine shop and I took it. When I was hired at the shop I had no machine shop experience at all.

    So far I have worked in the shop for six months, and I like it alot. I run the CNC Lathe's during the night shift with a guy that has many years of Manual and CNC machining experience, and he has thought me basically everything I know so far.

    So far after six months I can set up basic jobs on the HAAS lathe's. I don't get much opportunity to set up the machine or experiment because I have to run alot of parts and some times two machines at a time, and most of the time the parts have very close tolerances so I don't really get much time to fool around...



    My question is,

    Do you guys know of any small/mini CNC lathe's or mills that support G code's that I might be able to afford for home use. So I can learn and try things at home...

    Im looking for something very small, that I can run at home in the garage with my dad.

    Thank you.



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    Member djr76's Avatar
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    What about the Haas office lathe (OL-1), dunno what the price is but you and your dad could be plinking out small parts after hrs for some cash.



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    Look for a used TL or mini lathe



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    I assume that as an 18 or 19 year old, you don't have $20K laying around to spend

    If you're just trying to learn, I'd first look to local trade schools or community colleges for a CNC class. If you don't have access to a CNC class and you absolutely must buy your own machine, you'll probably end up looking for something like this:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=270195402859

    You can probably get up and running for under $2K with a used mini lathe. You won't be able to make much but you'll learn all of the basics that you seek.

    If you buy a clean used machine, you should be able to resell it for close to what you paid when you learn what you need to know.

    Even a used TL-1 is a tough purchase. I just watched a very early 2003 model go for $20K on eBay. For that kind of cabbage, you're better off buying new. The OL-1 is actually more expensive than the TL-1. A used TL-2 just changed hands at $28,600. Used Haas equipment ain't affordable for a 19 year old.

    The very last option would be to purchase the Haas Control Simulator. It's a full-blown Haas control panel that behaves exactly as the Mill and Lathe. You can program and run everything on the screen, exactly as if it were connected to a machine. I think it's about $2K which is probably steep for what you're looking for but it's the only way you can learn the actual Haas control without buying one or running somebody else's.

    Greg


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    Thank you very much for the information, im looking in trying a learnhaascnc.com lesson. Do you guys know anything about that program?



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    Registered Donkey Hotey's Avatar
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    Wow, I knew nothing about that site. It looks like a great deal. For that price, I don't think you could go wrong.

    Heck, you'd probably spend that much in fuel costs driving to a semester of classes at a community college (if you could find one at all).

    I learned my first G-code in college (engineering program, machine technology class). We programmed benchtop lathes that ran on the Apple IIe. It taught the basics though.

    After that, it was nothing until I took the Mill Training at the Haas Factory in California. That was three days of 'basics'. You can download the same manuals and training from their website for free.

    We did everything on the simulators so we didn't actually see a machine in motion. We had to read the displays (XYZ motions) to see if it was executing properly. It wasn't ideal but worth it for the tips the instructor shared and for his skills in finding problems when we got stuck.

    What do you think of the online training? Have you downloaded and printed the manuals from Haas yet?
    http://www.haascnc.com/custserv_training.asp

    Greg


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    Member djr76's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donkey Hotey View Post

    Even a used TL-1 is a tough purchase. I just watched a very early 2003 model go for $20K on eBay. For that kind of cabbage, you're better off buying new. The OL-1 is actually more expensive than the TL-1. A used TL-2 just changed hands at $28,600. Used Haas equipment ain't affordable for a 19 year old.

    The very last option would be to purchase the Haas Control Simulator. It's a full-blown Haas control panel that behaves exactly as the Mill and Lathe. You can program and run everything on the screen, exactly as if it were connected to a machine. I think it's about $2K which is probably steep for what you're looking for but it's the only way you can learn the actual Haas control without buying one or running somebody else's.

    Its really not that much $$ for the young guy since he will be making parts and a quick ROI to pay off the machine if he does it right. Plus he will have the help and support from his dad. I wouldn't suggest the simulator to him, how is he going to make $$ with the simulator, thats just silly. Why wait in line when you can skip ahead to the front.



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    Quote Originally Posted by djr76 View Post
    I wouldn't suggest the simulator to him, how is he going to make $$ with the simulator, thats just silly. Why wait in line when you can skip ahead to the front.
    There's a difference of goals here. The simulator and/or the training classes are a couple of grand invested in teaching himself to learn to run it. School costs money. So does the simulator or the online classes but both will make him more valuable to employers and he can then learn on their machines on their time.

    The most basic cost of a machine is easily over $25,000. I just did it. There are no bargains on used TL-1s out there. I've been watching for years.

    I cut every corner possible, already had a 16x40 manual lathe with similar tooling that I was able to move to the TL-1 and I'm still out over $25K.

    I'm all for going into business but it's a long way from a $2K investment in your own capabilities to a $30K investment in an industrial machine.

    Greg


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    VoKuS - Are you trying to learn programming or how to set up the lathe?



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    I'm trying to learn everything I can, I want to be able to get a design or a print, program it in master cam and bring it all the way to the machine for production.

    Like I said I only have 6 months total machine shop experience, and I'm trying to learn every thing I can.

    At this point I can set up a basic job on a HAAS lathe and get it to first article all by my self.

    I'm not sure if I would be able to afford the machine, and on the HAAS website they are listed at around 30K + all the things I would need to actually run it.

    I am thinking I will wait on buying a machine until I get good at alot of other things, and then maby start making parts in my garage...

    + I dont really make much right now... 13 an hour

    My dad is a machinist all his life so I will get alot of help form him

    Thanks for the information guys.



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    are stuck on getting a haas? you can get an Industrial hobbies mill that runs pc based software, as well as a smaller lathe that can run g code on pc based software.

    granted they won't teach alot in terms of setup for a specific machine you might run in the future, but really what are you looking to do? plus these brand new are fairly affordable.



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    Default Anyone using Swedturn lathe or SMT SAJO milling machine?

    [CENTER] I am a trainee programmer and have recently joined a company where they use Swedish CNC machines manufactured by SMT SAJO.The manufacturers closed down and we have a hard time getting technical support.If anyone uses Swedturn lathes or milling machines using c300 and SINUMERIK 850 controls please get in touch using:

    mjgichari@yahoo.com



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