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(New but broken) PowerFist mini-Mill

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The_Apprentice

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#1
So yes, I know some people will cringe. But I went ahead and got the Powerfist Mini-Mill anyhow from Princess Auto (it was on sale).

That said, now I'll have to find some fun to fix everything the slave-workers in china bungled up.

First thing I've noticed out of the box, is the cover for the balance mechanism is split in half. Torn in half actually....

Geee, can't wait to see what else may be damaged before I can even turn this thing on.

But wait! There is... (I think).

For the life of me, I have not been able to figure out how to raise or lower the headstock on this thing, LOL.

I read through the manual and looked elsewhere, there are locking mechanisms, but working them just refuses to do anything. The head-stock is locked in place, and I can not do anything with the 3-handle leavers on the side (they are perma-locked?)... can't even use this as a drill press. The fine feed works for a fraction, then stops.

Not sure how to tackle that one yet... just checking in here to see if I missed the obvious before I start finding ways to pull this thing apart and dismantle it.

IMG_7735.JPG
 
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#2
Why wouldn't you get it replaced instead of messing with it? The manager at St C store is very helpful.
 
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Ken from ontario

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#3
Congratulations on your newmill,,
I'm thinking they must have locked the torsion spring to secure the head for transportation, you may need to loosen /adjust the screws.I would also re-adjust the gibs and /or the locking knob on the headstock.
The quill handle may have been pressed in /engaged, try to pull it out .
Other than that,I can't think or any other reason for the headstock not moving.

Remember,the gears on these models are prone to break when aggressive milling but LMS has a kit to replace them with metal gears. but overall, it is a good starter mill,(I have a similar size Craftex model)I see them often( well used ) on kijiji often for sale so lots of hobbyists still buy, use,trade these mills.
Enjoy playing with your new toy:).
 

The_Apprentice

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#4
adjust the gibs
I actually tried that last night as well. I noticed they were WAY TOO TIGHT. Unfortunately, loosening them didn't help. The head-stock seems to be still jammed. I may fiddle around a bit more tonight.

The manager at St C store is very helpful.
This is not something that can be dealt with by the stores. In fact, you can not purchase them or even pick them up at a store. You MUST order online, and pay the $100 or so shipping, etc. That was one other annoyance to me. I've worked for places like Apple, and various other stores, where you could always have an item shipped to the nearest franchise shop then pic it up there as an option. For some reason, PA does not do this, nor does HF.

--- UPDATE ---

So, after loosening the gibs even more, and totally removing the Z-axis lock mechanism, the thing was still jambed up. I played a bit more with the coarse adjustment, and suddenly it snapped free. So now I can FINALLY move the head-stock after all this time.

I will try to do some more dissasembling and cleanup over the next few days anyhow, and get it into position and possibly drill holes to tighten the machine down to a make-shift table.

I miss the days when something either said Made in USA or Made in Germany, and you knew it would just WORK as soon as it came out the box. LOL
 
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MSD0

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#5
The handle for the z axis might be in the fine feed position. It should disengage by pulling it outward (might have to wiggle it back and forth).
 
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I miss the days when something either said Made in USA or Made in Germany, and you knew it would just WORK as soon as it came out the box. LOL
Well you were buying at the lowest price point. I have owned Made In USA and Germany stuff (cars mostly) and although the price point was high, the quality was not always commensurate with that price. At least you didn't pay a lot, relatively speaking. Would you have paid an extra $300 for a sorted out machine???

I bought a Taig lathe once, made in USA and not stellar IMO. Had a bunch of alignment issues out of the box.
 
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