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Grizzly G0705 Mill/Drill vs G0704

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mjonkman

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I was at Grizzly in Muncy, PA last weekend and looked over the various benchtop mills. I had planned to buy one but unfortunately or perhaps fortunately Grizzly was completely out of stock on every mill/drill it seemed.

Originally I had been considering a G0704 with the dovetail column but seeing the size difference for equal price made me wonder if I wouldn't be far better off with the much more hefty (size wise) G0705.

What are the practical benefits of the dovetail vs. round column mill drills?

What are the practical benefits of a gear drive vs. a belt drive?

I really would appreciate any guidance in terms of pros and cons of the various machines.
 

mjonkman

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To be dead honest, I don't yet know everything I'll "want" to do on the mill but here are some of the things that I'm trying to set up to do:

[list type=decimal]
[li]Build model engines - at this point I want to satisfy a childhood dream of building a steam engine[/li]
[li]Building tools and jigs for my other hobby - woodworking[/li]
[li]Building tools and jigs for this hobby[/li]
[/list]

I see a lot of people converting the dovetail way mills to do CNC type work. At this moment I currently don't have an interest in doing that. Being a computer programmer, when I go out to the shop I want to forget about computers :)

I can see myself wanting to cut gears (eventually) and attempting to create fake castings -milling out all the extra material to make something look like it was cast but not. Some of the tools I'll be making will be for my kid's woodturning hobby, specialized cutting tools and so forth, many of which will probably be out of drill rod and machining a flat on one side and an end.

I could see wanting about 20" longitudinal travel to cover 99% of what I can dream up today.

One concern I had with the gear heads have been horror stories I've read on the web about some having plastic gears and making even small cuts stripping the gears. The other concern is a matter of size for the money. Too often I've thrown money after smaller machines in my woodworking hobby only to find that I really needed the heft or size of a bigger machine and down the drain goes a significant portion of the investment in the previous tools. Thus I'm trying to make sure that I don't make a sizing mistake this time around.

Sincerely
Mark R. Jonkman
 

mjonkman

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Yep, I went to the "smashed and crashed" sale. Drove 7hrs to get there.. man did I have to pay off my wife big time to go. She evenutally came around, 3 days no kids (left Thurs), 2 days of tool shopping bliss (thank goodness they have a lounge) and an eighteenth anniversary thrown into one weekend :) Only cost me $1.5K to buy her off new laptop computer to replace her 10 yr old hand me down, and a few hours of standing in the ladies wear stores holding bags and twiddling my thumbs.

I was also very disappointed in the stock of new tools. I questioned the son of the CEO of Grizzly (the son was there working the showroom) and his response was bad forecasting. They basically need a 6 month lead time on orders from Asia. The group doing the forecasting probably assumed bad economy slower sales and apparently way underestimated the needs.

Maybe I missed all the good deals on the metal working stuff as I went to the woodworking tools first but from what was left 20 min into the sale looked more like a bomb had exploded in the metal working tool tent.
 

Turbinedoctor

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I have had the G0705 for about a year now and the biggest issue, not problem, is moving the head up or down and loosing regestration like was said eariler. Even with the dove tail column I would still want to check to make sure I am still on zero before resuming cutting which is what I have to do now any way. So I quess there isn't much difference other then someone who has a G0704 and finds after several times of moving the head that they maintain zero on the part. I would like to hear from some one who has a G0704 and checked this.
 

Jack Lavallet

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I took delivery of a G0705 two weeks ago, and so far am pleased. First cuts showed it had way sufficient power compared to small mini-mill I had before. I found the table 0.01/6 inches out of tram in X, .005/6 inches out in Y which really didn't surprise me with an out-of-the-box machine. I loosened the column block hold down bolts and used coke-can (0.004) shims to bring the tram to 0.001/6 inches both ways. Seems to be holding fine. Getting the drive belts off their shipping positions was difficult - they must put the belts on as they bolt the motor in place, and the new belts are very stiff. I had to loosen the motor and nod the motor shive to get the belt off once, but once off I could make adjustments easily. One negative - the handle on the Y-axis handwheel is so close to the edge of the chip pan that you'll hit your knuckles on it till you learn to only grab it at the outside end of the handle. Only wish is, I want an X-axis drive already!
 

tmarks11

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#6
congrats on your new machine. Definitely a big step up from a mini mill.

You got the G0705, the round column mill?

Probably want to replace the belts with new quality ones, or maybe a link belt.
 

bcliff8

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#7
I have nad a G0704 for 2years and I love it. I am currently trying to scrape together money to convert it to CNC. People talked me out of getting a round column..I can't remember why..
 

Dr John

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I have had a G0704 for several years. It is a good machine but has the problem of a plastic gear. I have destroyed the gear twice, now, while doing flycutting; even when making very light cuts. I've been exploring converting it to a belt drive but haven't found a kit at a reasonable price.
 

Uguessedit

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#9
I was at Grizzly in Muncy, PA last weekend and looked over the various benchtop mills. I had planned to buy one but unfortunately or perhaps fortunately Grizzly was completely out of stock on every mill/drill it seemed.

Originally I had been considering a G0704 with the dovetail column but seeing the size difference for equal price made me wonder if I wouldn't be far better off with the much more hefty (size wise) G0705.

What are the practical benefits of the dovetail vs. round column mill drills?

What are the practical benefits of a gear drive vs. a belt drive?

I really would appreciate any guidance in terms of pros and cons of the various machines.
I am contending with this same choice right now 7 years later than you. I already have an Rf-30 I absolutely love that has been epoxy granite filled and converted CNC. Round column doesn’t bother me and honestly I think it is more durable than my large Precision Mathews PM833t. Both Taiwanese castings and I get .001 accuracy from my Enco. The grizzly is a knock off but I’m sitting on a gift certificate and I need some other equipment so I narrowed down a third mill in the budget. My G0752 lathe was a lemon so they took it back 8 months later and gave my $1600 credit back. The g0705 is going to be more durable in every way over the 704 although there are benefits of one wants to upgrade to CNC that the 704 has ready made kits everywhere. I made my own for the enco and it wasn’t that bad. I’m about to convert my PM833t and would like another mill to keep manual. I’ve already got everything here for that CNC conversion. Could probably cut down the ball screws and modify the 705 too. Honestly it’s a hard decision without having used a 704 before. I just don’t think it can succumb to daily use like my other mills and it would probably start having issues like my lathe just months after buying. I upgraded the lathe to a Bolton 1337 and that was the best decision I’ve made in a while. Unreal accuracy without having to modify it out of crate. I know that the 704 would just sit until I could tear it down where the 705 would get put to use immediately. One can easily integrate a guide system for the head of it is a concern losing center. For me it was never a big deal. Only issue I could see is if drilling and tapping and neither of those machines are meant to do that. I have my PM833t if I need to drill and tap. I think even for a CNC conversion the 705 makes the most sense. The travel is enough for the parts I do I can leave the head locked and program away. Ultimately I think it comes down to use and whether you want a machine you can run any face mill above 4”. The 704 seems to me would struggle with a 3” face mill and I’ve run 5” on my enco with beautiful mirror finish results. I’d love to hear a legitimate reason to use a dc powered mill versus a larger ac 2hp when the price between the two should hardly sway you one way or another. I’d recommend the 705 for the above reasons but perhaps for occasional use for The Weeknd a month warrior buy the 704 and some tooling to get started. Once you obtain all the tooling and everything you need you may look back and wish you’d gone bigger. Oh and by the way the table can be easily modified on the 705 to get an extra inch of y travel. Think I got 2” out of my enco.
 

Dr John

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I have had a G0704 for several years as well. The plastic gear is a bit of a nuisance. Replacements are readily available, not expensive and relatively easily installed. Lately, I have had the potentiometer fail twice. While not an expensive part, it is a bit of a pain to replace. I have given up soldering it and have used shrink tubing to hold it in place after winding the wires tightly onto the pot. I installed the power feed a couple of years ago and have found it very helpful. Nonetheless, this is a fairly light duty machine, and I need to keep reminding myself of that.
 

Dr John

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I have also been considering replacing my G4003G Gunsmith lathe with the G0791. I once had the previous version of the G0791 but the lathe did not have the flexibility of the G4003G, so I sold it and went with the G4003G and the G0704. I was looking into going to Muncy to pick up the G0791, only to discover that the Muncy location is closed. Disappointing, since it was not a long trip from southern Ontario, where I live. The Missouri location is a 14hr drive. I will need to look into another option.
 

Mitch Alsup

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I have also been considering replacing my G4003G Gunsmith lathe with the G0791. I once had the previous version of the G0791 but the lathe did not have the flexibility of the G4003G, so I sold it and went with the G4003G and the G0704. I was looking into going to Muncy to pick up the G0791, only to discover that the Muncy location is closed. Disappointing, since it was not a long trip from southern Ontario, where I live. The Missouri location is a 14hr drive. I will need to look into another option.
If you have another 3'×4' to work with in your shop, a second machine tool (the mill) is a lot more flexible than the mill being attached to the lathe itself.
 

Dr John

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Fair point, Mitch, maybe keep the G0704 for lighter duty and replace the G4003G with the G0791.
 
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