- Nov 21, 2012
This is slightly off topic but this is what the education system should be teaching people already. As an ex-school teacher, I explained to my students that the subject I taught may never be needed again. The skills to research, construct and deliver the projects on the other hand would give them experience managing their time, finding key information, constructing logical arguments and working to a deadline.Actually if money were no problem, I'd start a non profit organization that took "at risk" people and teach them to be machinist, welders, electricians, carpenters, etc. etc. and take jobs on for cost. I'd have a large tract of land that would have a large central classroom/shop with housing for singles and families and make it mandatory that all persons attend multiple classes on varying disciplines including home economics, managing a budget, math and other technical lessons in order to become self sufficient and productive in society. They would receive a small wage and room and board, of course drug and alcohol testing would be mandatory as well as attending certain social functions. The only caveat would be once a person becomes self sufficient, I'd ask that they help teach others for a period of time and pay it forward!
GEORGE WILSON EsqI had a Weiler Matador that I bought and really had no place to keep it. I sold it to a friend. A year or 2 later,we bought a bother house,and I built a much larger shop. Now,when I call my friend,I have to listen to how great the Matador is!! They are putting Weiler lathes on some of the new aircraft carriers that just came out. They are very fine lathes,and very handy to operate.
GEORGE WILSON Esq
U now getting me all flummoxed
We thought we would be getting our "DREAM MACHINE"
This is a slight deviation from the Topic but leads on.
Hear me out as U would be the best Guy to make an informed input here.
We are in the process to finalise a Deal on a nice 12 x 24 Sturdy solid Lathe from Taiwan with VSD Increased to 2500 RPM (as requested), 5C Draw Bar, DRO and a Beefier 3HP Motor,(also as Ordered).
Comes with a D1-4 Camlock Spindle Nose, MT5 Taper with 40 mm Bore and a MT3 Tailstock
Weighing in at around 620 Kgs we are sure it is solid to well serve our needs.
We already have both Sets of Metric and Imperial Collets and this Machine will be perfect for the jobs we intend.
Now that U talk about a MATADOR, there is a VS1 one in Holland with a DRO and not much in Tooling.
The Seller will change the DRAW BAR to 5C, at a Price obviously.
It is in pretty good nick as we had been informed and from what one could see of the BED pics, albeit with the usual Body paint scrapes, which may require re-do.
The Seller ran a test piece and came up with 0.02mm run out on a 250mm bar length. (We are presently getting this from our 8 year old 14 x 40 also Taiwan made "Tool Room Lathe")
The question now begs, which to settle on ??
We don't want a Rolls just 'cos it is a Rolls and nurse it as a "Museum Piece", without getting the run for our money. We require a "work horse" as one, we are not trained machinists and two, we must be able to easily understand and operate the Controls on the machine.
Add to this quandary the age of the Machine and availability of Spares. The Euro, which has no specific Country, is suddenly stronger than the almighty Dollar. So there is no such thing as a "free Lunch".
And we don't need "keep up with the Jones"
Akin to the REVOLVER-AUTO Debate, this would aptly suit that other thread on Imports versus Local Machines.
We are keen to hear Your thoughts, and if some one is prepared to chime in as well.
Thanks "a mill" in advance. No pun intended !!
RAYWell, I'm not George but you did mention that others' opinions were OK...
This is the age-old question of old vs. new and there is no right or wrong answer. I happen to like the looks and feel of older machines, especially 1980s vintage Leblonds and Sheldons. They tend to weigh more (which really helps) and have better craftsmanship. Sadly though, most have seen a lot of use. Parts are often not available and are not standard sizes thus, repairs can be costly. Chuck spindles are usually L0 or L1 type and they are harder to find and more costly. Finally, if the critical surfaces are worn, you must either develop the skill (scraping) to repair it yourself or, have it done professionally which could involve 2-3 weeks (or more) of labor -which understandably, is not inexpensive. Having it done professionally also means freight charges to/from the restoration service.
New production machines purchased from a dealer means you have a neck to choke if it has flaws upon arrival. It's been my experience though that most higher end machines these days are pretty darn good. As the machine ages, parts are generally easy to get. They do not contain unusual size gears or other mechanisms and, many brands often are made of the same parts -and thus, the supply choices are favorable.
In the back of my mind, I know that sometime not too far from now, I'll add another lathe to the shop. It will be larger and more accurate/precise than the one I have now. I will absolutely keep the one I have as it is perfectly good and highly functional. I've already decided to go with a new production because, the risks as mentioned above of purchasing an older one -most likely from an unknown seller, are too high. I've spent hundreds of hours reparing and reconditioning some of the older equipment I once owned.... Been there, Done that. Yes, it can be satisfying and I personally feel those who do it regularly are highly skilled and are to be commended for their abilities. It is however, a specialization that I personally am not interested in embarking on. I make money doing fabrications, repairs and prototypes of various parts and components and I'm starting to branch-out into CNC. I simply don't have the time to embark on learning another highly specialized skill.
I reiterate... This is my personal choice and set of circumstances and it's entirely possible, acceptable and totally understandable that others have different views. -There is no right or wrong! I've done my best to relay my feelings -and hope I've done it fairly and inoffensively. In any event, I feel I've outlined the key factors involved in one's personal decision about purchasing a new or old machine.
Hello GEORGEThe Matador I had was not too long between centers. Maybe 24" and a smaller swing than 14". Either a 10"or a 12". I did not actually use the Weiler because it needed a phase converter. I was temporarily storing it in my shop at the museum.
One thing that was not the most pleasing thing to me was the Weiler nose took a special European fitting,not the more usual D4 or D5 which would have been commonly available over here. Plus,the fitting was not real quick to change chucks with. I can't recall the name of the fitting. You had to undo 3 or 4 bolts to change chucks. Maybe it is available where you are. No doubt the Weiler would have made as beautiful finishes as the Hardinge. And,It would cut many more threads. This was years ago,and I've forgotten many details by now.
It also had no gap. I have had a few profitable jobs where I needed the gap that my Taiwan made 16" lathe does have. I made $600.00 in 1 day with my 24" swing in the gap.
I'd have kept the Weiler if I'd had the knowledge that I'd soon be moving,and would have another shop. I'd have kept it because it was a very high quality lathe,and had special features I liked. I have 2 other lathes,the Hardinge HLVH,and my 16" x 40" lathe.
I do most of my work on the Hardinge,but when I need a bigger lathe,I have one.
If I had to only have 1 lathe,I'd have to go with the larger lathe because there is no substitute for a larger lathe when you need it. Therefore,I'd advise you to go with the 14" x 40" lathe if you will have only 1 machine,though the thought of losing a smaller,high quality lathe hurts my soul!!!
If you do get the Weiler,you can get a manual from Weiler,or from Tony Griffiths Engineering in England. I know because I traded him my Weiler manual. He makes great copies of hundreds of manuals. It will likely cost you at least $125.00. I had LOST my Matador manual,and had to order one from Weiler to give to the guy I sold my Matador to. The IDIOTS sent the blasted manual by COURIER,which I did not ask them to do. It cost me a bunch of money,too! I'd get the manual from Weiler,BUT,make sure you tell them to NOT send it by courier. Oh,yes,to finish my story,of course I FOUND the original manual a few weeks later. I came out o.k.,though,because Tony Griffiths did not have a Matador manual,and traded me a Deckel pantograph(which I STILL haven't put to use due to lack of tooling). He would have sold the Deckel manual for $125.00.
So,I am forced by practical concerns to say go with the larger lathe if you are making a living with it. You won't have to pass up jobs,or buy mega expensive tooling.
P.S.: Be careful how much you run the Taiwan made lathe at 2500 RPM. They almost always have oil just slung about in their geared heads,no forced oil feeding. We wore out the bearings in the slow speed range on a Taiwan made lathe we had at work. They weren't apparently getting much oil slung on them! We did a fair amount of larger work on that lathe,and ran it slow quite a lot of the time. I have thought about installing a small oil pump in my 16" lathe,with copper tubes to the bearings.
Hello GEORGEUsually Taiwan made lathes are splash oiled unless they are very expensive. Also,it is usual for the type of headstock oiling system to be mentioned in their descriptions of the lathe. Nearly certainly yours will be splash lubricated. If you already have a 14" X 40" lathe,the Matador could be a good investment. The Matador does have a hardened bed. Mine was in perfect shape,and I wish I'd never sold it. At the time,though,I had no prospect of having space to use it. Check on the nose of your Matador to see what type fitting is needed for chucks,face plates,etc.. Mine had a German type nose.
RAYI was very curious about issues with splash oil systems and asked Matt if any of his Chinese or Taiwanese lathes ever had a problem. After many years of selling thousands of lathes, he has never had an oil related problem with any lathe he's ever sold.
He did have one problem due to a broken gear and the user admits, he dropped a bolt in the gearbox -and it went BANG.
Thousands of lathes... not one single lubrication related problem.
Matt does not recommend using a lathe with a VFD and setting the motor to very low speeds for extended periods. This is in-line with my recommendations of always keeping the VFD within (approximately) 45 to 60 Hz. Even at that, it would take a very long time to cause any damage. Also, use the proper viscosity oil for the climate of your area.
Modern day lathes have very effective splash systems. -And believe me, never run your machine without the lid on. You will be covered in oil in a split second.
Much appreciate the research on this.
"Tis good to listen to someone who has sold Lathes almost all his Life.
What does concern us a bit though is whether the SPINDLE BEARINGS would last the distance on this "VARIABLE-SPEED" driven Machine. U see, the Manufacturers stated top speed with the INVERTER is 2'000 RPM. We asked for this to be increased to 2'500 RPM with an similar increase in size of the MOTOR from 2 HP to 3HP. They agreed, obviously at a Price. However, we really don't know if that is what we will really get at the end of the day. We need the extra "Voom" more for very light finish cuts and POLISHING. Our present 14 x 40" running at 1'800 RPM top speed, does give us very satisfying Finishes, although it seems like we are pushing things a bit when it comes to continued POLISHING at these maximum speeds. We are working quite a bit on S/S and Ti and these Steels can be rather demanding both on machine and Labour.
Come to think of it, most of the top Branded HIGH SPEED Machines like the Hardinge copies ie., Eisen, Sharp and Cyclematic including the UK old stalwarts Colchester and Harrison are all today made in TAIWAN. So for us, there just might be a scare of the unknown factor lurking like a phantom.
Although this manufacturer we are dealing with may not be a top end Machine Supplier, we are sure, they are however exposed to the Standards of their competition and contemporaries in their own Country.
It all might just get together evenly.
Would like to know what U think.
Thanks again, graciously.