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Bolton Lathes

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RL Berg

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#1
Is a Bolton lathe (9"x19") equal to a Grizzly G4000 or G0602. Any thoughts.
 

Rbeckett

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#2
Depends on the price. Griz and Boltons do share a lot of the same models often manufactured in the same plants and just painted a different color. So I would look at the two choices and consider which one has the most options and included accessories for the best price and don't forget that demon called freight. Some freight companies charge for everything and others do not. Look for the hidden residential delivery and liftgate charges because those add up quickly and can often turn a good deal into a not so good deal rather quickly. Also look at customer service and parts availability over time. Will your supplier of choice still be in business when you need that part eventually. I would also look at the Precision Mathews line of machines and see what Matt has to offer in that size range. His may be more or less than the griz, but they are better machines in quality of fit and finish than their counterparts from either of the suppliers you mentioned. Hope this helps get you going...

Bob
 

Gary J. Goven

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#3
I must agree with much of what Bob has already said. The "Sieg Pattern" 9x19 aka 9x20 mini lathe (just depends on how it is measured) is produced by several manufacturers. Did not come with a forward / reverse as original equipment, but can be fitted with a mod by the end user. Mini Lathe .com has a wealth of information on this model from its various distributors. Recent models may have been upgraded to variable speed motor control. I mention the forward / reverse item, because it is an operational nicety that one becomes accustomed to, and I cannot imagine living without it.
The second reason I am replying to this particular post is, I have owned a Bolton BT1030A since February of 2014. Several things went haywire with wrong parts and parts missing from the start. But, most notably, the change gears for metric threading were not with the Lathe. After a year and nine months of begging for those gears from Daniel, the manager at Bolton Tools in southern Cal., I still don't have them. He promised me he would provide them shortly after the sale.
This is the kind of nightmare you do not want to experience. I pray every night that nothing breaks on this Lathe, I don't think Bolton can get the parts.
I just saw the date of this original post, but decided to reply anyway. Perhaps others will see the Bolton title thread and benefit from my experience.
Gary
 

TC0853

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#4
My first mini was a Bolton. I found myself newly retired and looking for something to occupy my time and had always kind of wanted to do some machining. So not really knowing a lot about it, but having a good mechanical aptitude (I got the attitude later) I bought Boltons 12x24 3 in one.I had it for about four years, and obviously most of what I was doing was practice, but I found that as long as I could keep it running, and harder yet, getting replacement parts, it would do pretty much what I wanted it to. But, and it's a BIG but, I had to baby it every step of the way, and worse yet, it seemed like I had to adjust the gibs on the cross slide every other time I used it, and even then you would get movement out of it, or it was too tight to travel the cross slide. Finally, and I'm sure this was related to the gib problem, the table broke, that's right........BROKE! OK, now it needed to be fixed. But no thanks to Daniel, and his partner in crime, Jose, they couldn't even give me a solid price, let alone get the part ordered. (God forbid they carry anything bigger than cross slide nuts in their inventory). At this point, due in large part that I didn't want to keep dumping money into this temperamental POS, I bought a Smithy. Sure, they cost more, and they're an import, but what Smithy has done is they designed the machines here in the States, with American engineers, and Spec'd the tolerances, metallurgy, and whatnot to American standards, and I'm telling you they're worth what they cost, I've had mine over a year and haven't had one failure, and what's real nice, is on the Granites, not only do they have a "crash protection" clutch on the end of the leadscrew in the pulley box, so if you happen to run the machine past it's limits it doesn't start spitting out pieces of change gears, but since I did the initial setup when I bought it, I haven't had to do anything to it other than maintenance and service. I haven't even had to readjust the gibs and there is NO movement on that table. I have no problem getting "slipfit no shake" time after time. And oh, did I forget to mention the quick change gear box? The only change gears are the A,B,C gears for metric threading, and they're not on the main gear trellis so that's a snap too.
I got off the Bolton topic there but that was just to illustrate how inferior IMHO the Bolton is, compared to what is actually another import. And, Smithy has a large parts inventory here in the States and they want you to come back and buy from them, and it shows in the way they treat you. Also you can call their 800 number and talk to a warm body about tech issues.
OK, I'm done. I don't want to wear out my welcome, I'm a new member and this is my first post.
 

qualitymachinetools

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#5
Hey Gary, did you ever get those gears? I have a bunch of gears in inventory, and if you can get me some details or dimensions on what you need, I might have them or be able to get them for you. I can't promise anything, since I am not sure where exactly that their machine comes from, (It is not from any of the factories that we deal with, I know that) but I just hate to see someone stuck and unable to get parts that they need. A lot of times they use similar parts, so if I am able to help you out, just wanted to offer it.
 

RJSakowski

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#6
I recently compared a Bolton BT1022 10 x 22 lathe to my Grizzly 602. Here are the differences that I found ( Bolton listed first):
cross slide travel 2.75" vs 6.5"
compound travel 2" vs 3.5"
metric spindle vs inch spindle
spindle bore .82" vs 1.0"
spindle taper MT3 vs MT4
tailstock taper MT2 vs MT3
swing over saddle 5.5 vs 6.13
min rpm 125 vs 150
fewer thread options and smaller range 15 inch/17 metric vs 33 inch/26 metric (it appears that the .1mm thread pitch is a typo, the manual shows .35mm as the finest pitch)
metric lead screw, cannot use thread dial for inch threads vs inch lead screw, cannot use thread dial for metric threads
fewer accessories included, no 4 jaw, faceplate, follower, steady rest

It does have power cross feed which the 602 doesn't

information taken from the Bolton BT1022 manual
 

Downunder Bob

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#7
I wouldn't waste my time and or money on a chinese machine. Yes, I know some people have had a good run, but so many have not.

I realise that for many cost is a problem, But think about the cost of a less than satisfactory machine. Bite the bullet and buy a Taiwanese Machine, they are not much dearer than Chinese, but many times better.

I can't speak for the dealers in USA., but here in downunder the Taiwanese dealers are pretty good. My machine pictured left was only about 10% more than a similar specced Chinese machine, but when I looked at one in the dealer's shop, you could tell it was poorly made.
 

fwwbronco

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#8
I own a Bolton 12" x 24" Gear-Head Metal Lathe | CQ9332. This is not the only lathe I own, just wanted one around house for small jobs and the honey do list, on days off.
First impression, looked nice. 1-1/2 through head stock, mt5, metric and american threading, tail stock over 3" of travel, mt3, etc.
Now for the bad news.
Feeds are backwards, carriage feed is too fast and cross feed is way to slow. Yes, I know its a change gear, but the feed / compound feed is backwards.
Next, once you engage the feed lever for cutting and it loads the tooling!
IT CAN NOT be unloaded SAFELY, OSHA should be involved in this one. Saw this on another thread where a guy had same problem. still trying to remember where I saw it, and what he done to fix it.
Next is threading, You can not use the threading dial,

1 because it has a odd number of gear teeth / numbers on it. least-ways not with the book and pdf down load that is suppose to be for this lathe from Bolton.
2 it will not stay engaged in the threading worm. Bad teeth on treading dial gear, and height of gear to worm/ miss alignment.
I will try fixing its flaws with a compound tare down and rebuild/rework? Also, changing its 1 hp single phase motor to 1 1/2 hp 3 phase and a freak drive so i can slow it down to 20 or so rpm when threading, not 75 rpm like it does now.
I paid less then 1/2 of list price for the one I have, from a guy that brought it new. He only used it a couple of times, and could not figure it out. I am still trying to figure out who got the better end of that deal?
Will I buy another Bolton lathe, probably not. Can they be fixed? Probably, at least I hope I can.
 

gman10259

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#9
Have to give a thumbs up with Downunder Bob's assessment. Bought a Weiss WBL290F and was not at all happy with the quality of the Lathe. Sold it and bought a Precision Matthews 1236-T which I am very satisfied with the quality of this lathe. Big difference between the Chinese and Taiwan Lathes. IMHO :)
 

Downunder Bob

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#10
Thanks for the nod. I try to say it as it is, or at least as I believe it is. I tried to google your Weiss WBL290F and could only find one reference and it is to an Australian tool sales shop and their machine appears to be identical to the PM 1236, that you say you replaced it with.

PM gets a pretty good wrap on this forum, so they must be doing something right. I have no first hand experience with them as they do not exist here in Downunder.

When I bought my machine I had a local dealer import it directly from the factory in Taiwan, so it has the original factory labels on it It's fully imperial the only difference is the saddle is right handed, normal in Australia and UK, not left hand as are most machines in USA.

Mine came complete with the 127 gear for cutting true metric threads ,and has all the charts for both imperial; and metric.

Historically Australia was Imperial (british) but we converted to metric during the 1970's, although we can still buy nuts, bolts and thread bar in the old systems quite readilly. I guess when all us old guys have died out then the imperial stuff will dissapear. As most of the stuff I work on was made in imperial I decided to order my lathe in imperial.

Good luck with your new lathe and enjoy.
 

gman10259

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#11
The Weiss WBL290F is a small hobby lathe powered by a BLDC motor. Precision Mathews sells a model very similar (PM 1127). Warco in the UK sells a model WM 280V Lathe also very similar to the Weiss. (Both PM and Warco's Lathes are powered by a AC Drive vice the DC on the Weiss).

Precision Mathews has been great for support. The owner is a machinist so when you are dealing with machine issues you got somebody who knows machines vise others that sell them but know nothing about them. We're waiting for Spring over here Down Under Bob you guys are in/starting Fall?

Take Care
 

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gman10259

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#12
My PM 1236-T has the 120T and the 127T transposing gears for cutting metric threads.
 

Downunder Bob

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#13
The Weiss WBL290F is a small hobby lathe powered by a BLDC motor. Precision Mathews sells a model very similar (PM 1127). Warco in the UK sells a model WM 280V Lathe also very similar to the Weiss. (Both PM and Warco's Lathes are powered by a AC Drive vice the DC on the Weiss).

Precision Mathews has been great for support. The owner is a machinist so when you are dealing with machine issues you got somebody who knows machines vise others that sell them but know nothing about them. We're waiting for Spring over here Down Under Bob you guys are in/starting Fall?

Take Care
Interesting, nothing like the WBL290F sold in Australia, as I said, looks identical and the specs read the same, to the PM 1236, and it's made in China not Taiwan. I suspect this happens when different importers in different countries assign their own model numbers to machines that they import from factories scattered in Asia. the Australian one is not called a Weiss, but the model number is the same.. Thats why I prefer to get a machine that is sold under the manufacturers model name / number, at least then you can be sure of what you are getting.

Yes we are getting into fall although we call it Autumn, not fall, as our native trees do not lose their leaves, and our winters are very mild, We only get snow in the mountains. Also only one warm blooded animal truly hibernates and that is the mountain pygmy possum, which only lives in the higher areas of the montain ranges that are snow covered for a few months of the year. There is nowhere here that is permanently snow covered. The winter snow season usually only lasts about 3 months at best, often even less, but occasinly longer. None of our cities get snow or sub zero temperatures

Cheers.
 

gman10259

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#15
Mine is a PM1236-T which is a Taiwanese Lathe. Us Yanks will also say Autumn albeit a more formal term. For example we would say to our family/friends "See you in the Fall" NOT "See you in the Autumn"
 

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Downunder Bob

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#16
Mine is a PM1236-T which is a Taiwanese Lathe. Us Yanks will also say Autumn albeit a more formal term. For example we would say to our family/friends "See you in the Fall" NOT "See you in the Autumn"
G'day Gman, Ah the Pm 1236-T that eplains it very well. Those two machines are sold here, but by different dealers, one has chinese machines which he sells under his own name and model numbers, just to make it hard for customers to compare, they also often have the factory make subtle cosmetic changes just to make it more difficult, they will also claim the machines are made to superior Taiwanese specifications, which is plain B-S.
The other one has Taiwanese made machines and he sells them under the name and model # of the Taiwanese maker, so people know what they are getting. Thus mine is a LD1216 which is the short bed version of your 1236-T, Mine also is without the extra bells and whistles that you have, I could have got them, but didn't want to.

Yes well aware of the formal status of Autumn and the casual fall in US as I have relatives and friends over there, also travel fairly frequently to visit.

Cheers, Bob
 
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