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Bummed Out Newb On My First Mill Purchase Gone Bad

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#1
Hi all,

I'm new to the forum and new to machining (as in NEVER even turned on a mill). I've spent a week or more lurking around trying to get a feel for the forum and learn a few things.

Backstory:
I recently decided that I needed a quality drill press for my backyard shop where I work on motorcycles, atv's, and so forth. So I figured if I'm going to spend a good amount of money on a DP, I might as well get a mill and expand the possibilities. I found that a full size knee mill seems to be the way to go if the money and space allows.

So a couple of days before Christmas I came across a Craigslist ad about an hour away from my home for a Bridgeport J head @ $700.00 That seemed like a pretty cheap price for a refurbished Bridgeport and wasted no time to contact the seller and hustled over there to check it out. After looking it over to the best of my ability, I felt it was worth the money asked and paid for the mill and got a receipt. We agreed that I would arrange to pick it up after the holidays from his business.

Unfortunately after several attempts since to contact the seller (he leaves me hanging for days at a time) and pick up the mill (no show on agreed day and time), I've given up and asked for a refund and he agreed.

Currently:
So, I don't think I'm going to find a full size mill in my price range of $1,000 in my area (central FL). Should I start looking at a mini mill or something?

I found this one and was wondering if it's worth the asking price?

https://jacksonville.craigslist.org/tls/5940457327.html

Or should I go with HF and 20% coupon?

http://www.harborfreight.com/1-1-2-half-horsepower-heavy-duty-milling-drilling-machine-33686.html




Thanks in advance,

Gary
 

Wreck™Wreck

Active User
H-M Supporter-Premium
#2
I owned a J head BP which I bought in 1992 and scrapped in 2014, it was old when I bought it.

It was so clapped out that I would not sell it even though there were offers, I did not feel comfortable selling such a machine to a hobby user even though it would work fine for such a purpose.
 

rdean

Active User
H-M Supporter-Premium
#3
I tried to contract that same add last week and he did not reply to me either.
There are several adds for mills but I have found most are sold but the person did not remove the add.


I would choose the HF mill as it looks like a RF30 size which is larger then the RF20.
You can add an X axis power feed later if you find you want that.

Good luck
Ray
 

4gsr

Global Moderator
Staff member
H-M Supporter-Premium
#6
Grizzly may offer you the same mini mill for the same price but a better shipping price. They may have a package deal with vise, and basic tooling for the price of the HF mill, too. Shop around. Don't forget about Precision Mathew machines.
 

Ed ke6bnl

Active Member
Active Member
#7
I had a Burke Millrite mill wanted larger J head, but could not find a deal, so went and finally added a DRO and as soon as I finish a J head with a round ram came up for $500+$100 to deliver. Bought it and sold th Burke (kinda Bridgeport 3/4 size) for$1400 in a couple of days, supper mill for smaller foot print. I did an XYZ DRO right away and an X axis power feed and love rigidity. Be patient and wait, learn how to use and a good deal will show up. Then place a want add in the paper. I got my Burke and Rockwell lathe from the want add for $900.

Sent from my SM-T377V using Tapatalk
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#8
Grizzly may offer you the same mini mill for the same price but a better shipping price. They may have a package deal with vise, and basic tooling for the price of the HF mill, too. Shop around. Don't forget about Precision Mathew machines.
Thanks 4gsr! I'm in the process of looking through the mini mill area for more options like the grizzly go704 and the pm-25. Getting ready to look at the little machine shop site now.
 

JayMcClellan

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#9
Thanks 4gsr! I'm in the process of looking through the mini mill area for more options like the grizzly go704 and the pm-25. Getting ready to look at the little machine shop site now.
I was in the same boat a month ago, and ended up choosing the pm-25 over the g0704 or LMS. After reading about the noisy plastic gears on the Grizzly and the popular belt drive conversion for it, the math was simple. The PM-25 already has belt drive and its delivered price was about the same as the Griz plus a belt drive kit, and PM has a 5 year warranty so I felt it was a better deal just based on that. The much better reputation of PM sealed it for me. The LMS mills looked decent but a step down, plus I plan to do a CNC conversion and the G0704/PM-25 models seem more popular in that regard.
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#10
I was in the same boat a month ago, and ended up choosing the pm-25 over the g0704 or LMS. After reading about the noisy plastic gears on the Grizzly and the popular belt drive conversion for it, the math was simple. The PM-25 already has belt drive and its delivered price was about the same as the Griz plus a belt drive kit, and PM has a 5 year warranty so I felt it was a better deal just based on that. The much better reputation of PM sealed it for me. The LMS mills looked decent but a step down, plus I plan to do a CNC conversion and the G0704/PM-25 models seem more popular in that regard.
Thanks Jay

These are the two that I've pretty much narrowed it down to.

I think....... lol
 

Whyemier

Active User
H-M Supporter-Premium
#11
I have the RF 30 Mill/Drill and am happy with it. Just have to realize it doesn't have the versatility of a Knee Mill. The first one has a table feed so that's something to consider. That could add as much as $300 to the cost of the new RF 30 from HF. You should also consider repeat-ability when you raise or lower the head. You may find yourself having to dial in again if your work is critical, that applies to either machine.

All that taken into consideration, as I said I'm happy with the mill. It fits my small shop/shed and does what I want.
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#13
Did you get the money back yet?
No. Not yet.
He claimed to be out of town on a job Friday (the day I was supposed to get the mill). Then he asked for my name and bank to transfer the money back to me. On Saturday he said the transfer was completed and asked for my email to send me a transfer confirmation and receipt. Now it's Sunday night and nothing has shown up in my account. NOT SURPRISED!!!!!

I have a feeling he probably spent the money and now is scrambling because i want my money back. I'm not sure if things are delayed because of the weekend and will give him till tomorrow. Then I guess I'll have to call the authorities or something.

Of course my son checks the mugshot websites after I bought the mill and finds this guy with a record........ grand theft, felony battery, robbery

Just my luck!

Now I see he's got the mill up on for sale @$1150 that's $450 more than I paid for it! What a scammer......
 
Last edited:

4gsr

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Staff member
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#14
I don't pay any individual money for a major purchase unless I'm picking it up right there on the spot in person. Period! Better make sure he's not draining your bank account of more money! Get the local authorities involved, too. Especially since you son said he has a record!
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#15
I don't pay any individual money for a major purchase unless I'm picking it up right there on the spot in person. Period! Better make sure he's not draining your bank account of more money! Get the local authorities involved, too. Especially since you son said he has a record!
Normally I wouldn't. But it's 2200 lbs and I wasn't ready to transport it at 8pm that night and didn't want to lose the mill to another buyer.
 

markba633csi

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Active Member
#16
Looks like time for small claims court- Sorry to hear that, I bought a small horizontal mill under the same circumstances, had to pick it up 3 full weeks later, worked out fine.
Mark S.
 

Charles Spencer

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H-M Supporter-Premium
#17
If you've got a bill of sale I'd consult a lawyer. Provided you didn't sign away your rights you may be able to show up with a sheriff's deputy and claim the mill. I'm not a lawyer and I certainly don't know Florida law but I'm pretty sure such a thing would be possible in my state.
 

Paul in OKC

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Active Member
#18
You would be fine with either of the two mills you have linked. I had one of the HF model for a few years and did more than I thought I would be able to on it. You just have to learn its limitations and work within them.
 

Reeltor

Active User
Active Member
#19
Everyone has an opinion on how you should handle this but if it was me and if you have your signed receipt, I'd go to the sheriff's office and ask if a deputy could accompany you to pick up the mill. Before you do that maybe call the sheriff's office and see if they will drive to the place of business just to let them know that you aren't going to let this go.

Now that the seller has your routing and bank account number; I'd be concerned that he might try to loot your bank account. At the least I call the manager at your bank to see how to protect your account(s).
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#20
Everyone has an opinion on how you should handle this but if it was me and if you have your signed receipt, I'd go to the sheriff's office and ask if a deputy could accompany you to pick up the mill. Before you do that maybe call the sheriff's office and see if they will drive to the place of business just to let them know that you aren't going to let this go.

Now that the seller has your routing and bank account number; I'd be concerned that he might try to loot your bank account. At the least I call the manager at your bank to see how to protect your account(s).
Yeah I called the bank 3 days ago and they said "we don't process transactions over the weekend". So I have to wait until Monday or Tuesday to see if my refund shows up. So if it doesn't appear in my acct. tomorrow then I'll be going to the police department and let them know whats going on. Such a hassle.........
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#21
If you've got a bill of sale I'd consult a lawyer. Provided you didn't sign away your rights you may be able to show up with a sheriff's deputy and claim the mill. I'm not a lawyer and I certainly don't know Florida law but I'm pretty sure such a thing would be possible in my state.
If the money doesn't show tomorrow, then it's off to the police dept. to see what I can do.
 

Reeltor

Active User
Active Member
#22
Please go into your bank and talk with someone about this crook having your account and routing number. With these numbers he can electronically draft all of the money out of your bank account. There are many scammers out there that phish for these numbers, it got so bad in the real estate industry that companies had to setup special one way accounts.
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#23
Please go into your bank and talk with someone about this crook having your account and routing number. With these numbers he can electronically draft all of the money out of your bank account. There are many scammers out there that phish for these numbers, it got so bad in the real estate industry that companies had to setup special one way accounts.
I just finished talking to my bank. As expected, no money sent. Now I'm going to head over to the police dept. and talk to them and see what I can do.
 

NCjeeper

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#24
Everyone has an opinion on how you should handle this but if it was me and if you have your signed receipt, I'd go to the sheriff's office and ask if a deputy could accompany you to pick up the mill. Before you do that maybe call the sheriff's office and see if they will drive to the place of business just to let them know that you aren't going to let this go.
Its still a civil matter at this point and I doubt you will get law enforcement to go. I know we don't with our department.
 

kwoodhands

Active User
H-M Supporter-Premium
#25
Hi all,

I'm new to the forum and new to machining (as in NEVER even turned on a mill). I've spent a week or more lurking around trying to get a feel for the forum and learn a few things.

Backstory:
I recently decided that I needed a quality drill press for my backyard shop where I work on motorcycles, atv's, and so forth. So I figured if I'm going to spend a good amount of money on a DP, I might as well get a mill and expand the possibilities. I found that a full size knee mill seems to be the way to go if the money and space allows.

So a couple of days before Christmas I came across a Craigslist ad about an hour away from my home for a Bridgeport J head @ $700.00 That seemed like a pretty cheap price for a refurbished Bridgeport and wasted no time to contact the seller and hustled over there to check it out. After looking it over to the best of my ability, I felt it was worth the money asked and paid for the mill and got a receipt. We agreed that I would arrange to pick it up after the holidays from his business.

Unfortunately after several attempts since to contact the seller (he leaves me hanging for days at a time) and pick up the mill (no show on agreed day and time), I've given up and asked for a refund and he agreed.

Currently:
So, I don't think I'm going to find a full size mill in my price range of $1,000 in my area (central FL). Should I start looking at a mini mill or something?

I found this one and was wondering if it's worth the asking price?

https://jacksonville.craigslist.org/tls/5940457327.html

Or should I go with HF and 20% coupon?

http://www.harborfreight.com/1-1-2-half-horsepower-heavy-duty-milling-drilling-machine-33686.html




Thanks in advance,

Gary
Gary, I would not bother with a mini-mill. If you can swing it a large mill-drill sounds like it would fit the bill.
I have a G0760 Grizzly mill for 2 years now and could not be happier with it. I use it mostly as a milling machine because I have 2 drill presses also. This mill is about 820 lbs. When I got it , this mill listed at $1650.00, I believe it is about $75.00 more now. Also this mill has no gears, belt driven instead. I actually prefer a belt driven machine even though changing speeds is a PITA. Quieter, no gears to break, and probably less cost. I rarely change speeds anyhow.
I sold a min-mill and then received this mill as a gift.
This is a round column mill, some people do not want this type of column. When raising or lowering the head it may move slightly. No problem for me, I just re-center the XY table to center after locking the head. Usually a 20 second job.
There are other mills that may do the job but probably more than $1000.00 .
I think new may be a better option for you since you are inexperienced with milling.
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#26
Its still a civil matter at this point and I doubt you will get law enforcement to go. I know we don't with our department.
I called the police dept. and was told I could file for a Writ of Replevin with the courthouse. Once I get that, I could call the police to escort me to his business and retrieve the mill and he would not be allowed to stop me. They also told me that if I could get him to agree to hand over my refund in person, I could call them and they would show up and make sure it a smooth transaction. Since he currently has "my property" for sale on Craigslist, I was told if he sells it before I can collect the mill or get my refund, I could take him to civil court. At this point I'm so over this guy and his stall tactics that I just want my money back and move on with my life.........
 

rdrasher

Active Member
Active Member
#27
Well I think I've made some progress with this guy tonight. After avoiding my attempts to contact him this weekend and this morning, I decided tonight to call him out on a local swip-swap Facebook page about how he owes me a refund for the mill and how he is trying to sell something he doesn't even own. Hallelujah! I received a response to my posting via phone text almost immediately. He was pissed and tried to explain how he transferred the money and I'm causing him problems with customers on the page, blah, blah, blah but did agree to meet with me on Saturday to give me a cash refund. So hopefully when I show up to his shop with an officer on Saturday at 5pm everything will finally be sorted out.

Fingers crossed.......
 

ozzie46

Active User
Active Member
#28
This could get dangerous!! Don't go alone and definitely not at night. Have read to many stories about how things like this have gone deadly. Be safe.

Ron
 

NCjeeper

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H-M Supporter-Premium
#30
He was pissed and tried to explain how he transferred the money and I'm causing him problems with customers on the page, blah, blah, blah but did agree to meet with me on Saturday to give me a cash refund.
So it sounds obvious that he didn't wire the money and he lied about that. Good luck.