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Used Kurt vs New Glacern vise

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sfsteel

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#1
Glacern GSV-550 — $450
vs.
Used Kurt A50 — $300

Which direction would you go?

Example used Kurt:
https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https://www.ebay.com/ulk/itm/113145215980

Could I save a couple hundred bucks and get a better vise by going with a used Kurt? Do these old Kurt eBay vises tend to have life left in them? Not sure how I feel about buying a vise sight un-seen.

I would love to get your opinion in you have one.
 

hman

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#2
I can't offer any "hard" advice, and will point out that EVERY eBay vise is different, so it's impossible to make a general statement. A couple things to keep in mind ...
1. You can buy repair kits for Kurt vises - https://www.kurtworkholding.com/vise-repair-kits-c-43_597.html
I bought a used Kurt from a Craigslist ad a couple years ago. Turned out to be too big for my RF-30 clone mill, so I cleaned it up and partially refurb'ed it with a kit. Sold at a nice profit.
2. Older Kurt vises, like the eBay one you link to, often don't have some of the features that a new vise (Kurt or Glacern) will. These include a groove in the fixed jaw for a work stop, improved screw seals, etc.
3. Sometimes Glacern will have a "scratch and dent" sale, where you can save $$ on a vise with minor cosmetic defects.
4. When checking an eBay ad, be sure that the seller is showing all sides of the vise, as well as a good view of the "ways" with the jaws fully open and closed. Didn't see anything obviously wrong with the one you link to. But it did appear to be lacking the keys that attach underneath (these allow quick alignment with the mill table slots). Avoid a vise that's missing the jaws (might indicate they were "mistreated"), fails to show one side or the other (hidden damage???), or shows visible hammer marks on the handle. Crud inside ... ah, well ... might just indicate laziness on the part of the seller. I had to clean out a lot of old swarf and cutting fluids from inside the one I bought.
 

Eddyde

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#3
Kurt also offers Scratch and Dent discounts: https://www.kurtworkholding.com/scratch-dent
I bought my vise that way and have been extremely happy with it, I hardly noticed the tiny blemish.
eBay prices are usually quite a bit higher than what can be found on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.
 

sfsteel

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#4
The dx4 looks interesting from Kurt. The vise will be going on a Precision’s matthews PM30 8x33 table. I didn’t realize the dx4 could open to over 6 inches! That seems like a potentially better vise than the Glacern 550, with larger jaw opening and have a smaller footprint on my little mill.

Am I on the right train of thought here?
 

mikey

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#5
I have a Kurt D40 on a 8x28 table and it is a perfect fit, at least to me. I would love to have a DX4 but that won't happen. I bought mine new because it has a lifetime warranty that way. If it was out of spec it would have been replaced without a problem. A milling vise is the most important accessory on the mill and I wanted a good one so I spent the money. If I had to do it again I would go for the DX4.
 

aliva

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#6
How do you really know it's a Kurt. Ask for a photo of the bottom and the other side. Kurt usually has USA cast into the body. As Hman mentioned above get a picture of the jaws wide open to be sure the ways are in good condition
 
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