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    • February 13, 2019 9:49 AM EST
    • So since I got talked out of this purchase I will be getting me a little drill press. So that then brings up the question what would be a good, non budget breaking, mill and lathe to start saving for considering that I am not going to be doing much more than small projects in soft metals and plastic. Turning and milling steel would be nice and if that doesn't jump up the price to horrible then I would go the extra to have a more stout machine. $1500 for a lathe and another $1500 for a mill are not gonna happen. Just not. So what, if any, are the alternatives. I see lots of less expensive machines but where to we break the "toy" and "cheap tool" barrier and move into real hobby level equipment at an affordable price point (I know affordable is relative)?

    • February 12, 2019 8:19 PM EST
    • Devon Sinsley said:

      Again thanks all. Gonna pass on it. Just afraid it isn't gonna work well enough. 

      Smart choice Buddy :).

       

    • February 12, 2019 6:43 PM EST
    • Again thanks all. Gonna pass on it. Just afraid it isn't gonna work well enough. 

    • February 11, 2019 8:12 PM EST
    • While it can never compare to Gary's professional tools and would be aggravating for him to try and use it, I don't regret buying my Unimat.

      I bought longer beds  and extra heads for speed reduction, because I want SOMEDAY *to build a Sterling Silver loco, probably in 0n3. I can turn the boiler in wax and cast it... And with Gary's beautiful drawings, I can make drivers with odd number of spokes. He drew them to fit my divider plate, the thingy with all the holes... He drew them for me, when it actually sounded like I could make my casting shop worth turning on... but my 'marks' all shied away at the thought of paying...

      I have a HF drill press, but mostly I free hand with the variable speed flex shaft.

       

      * should I live so long

    • February 11, 2019 6:47 PM EST
    • Devon IMO ...put the $130 elsewhere.

    • February 11, 2019 6:33 PM EST
    • Neat.   I love the smaller tools myself...

      So, if you just want to drill holes...why not something like this stand? (assuming you already have a rotary tool...)

      I have one and used it to drill holes when I was making my hoppers.

      And once you get a good transformer you can also get a bunch of neat mini tools, like this little belt sander from Micro-Mark

      They also have a VERY handy drill, jig saw, and a bunch of other really handy tools.   The transformer allows for variable speed for all of these.

      Of course, a mill might be cheaper.

    • February 11, 2019 6:13 PM EST
    • David Maynard said:

      A milling machine would be cool, but toy machine is a toy machine. Years ago I bought a Harbor Freight, bench top drill press, and while its not production grade, it does for me what it was advertised to do. And with a little creativity, I have turned some wood forms on it too, even though its not a lathe.

       

      Why would you look at that machine when you have a shop-smith?

      Couple reasons. First my wife would have a real problem with me bringing my shopsmith inside, . This started out because I want a small drill press, Not a shop bench top, but a hobby bench top one I can use for repetitive drilling on my small projects and then have it tuck nicely away somewhere. Basically the same concept as why I bought a small belt.disc sander. I don't like going out in the shop and setting up the shopsmith to sand a tiny piece. The little sander works great and can fit in a cabinet. A small drill press would be the same way. While looking for them I cam across that and thought some of the other features would be fun to have as well; a mill/lathe mainly, for turning small brass and plastic pieces. I can do plastic on my shopsmith, never tried brass but I am assuming the light duty stuff I want to make I can pull off with it. But it would be nice to do it inside at my hobby bench. So a drill press snowballed into wondering about this and for 130 bucks if people found them useful for hobby work then it would be a cool little tool. 

       

      I was fully expecting the "don't buy a multi-tool, because they are never as good as individual machines" response, I hear it all the time on wood working forums about the ShopSmith. But as a ShopSmith owner I find great usefulness in its flexibility. Sure its not as good but a guy who is going to make a few bird houses it would work great as a single tool. Do I prefer my table saw to my shopsmith, yes. Do I prefer my router table to my shopsmith, yes. But it does great for a drill press for my needs. It is also very practical as a lathe, for most anything I will ever do. So on and so forth. Would I recommend one to a cabinet maker, heck no.

       

      I also fully expected the "don't buy cheap tools or you will be disappointed" answer. The same type of response I got on pin nailers and my harbor freight cheapy is still going strong as is my small belt disc sander. Again I wouldn't recommend them to someone who uses them professionally or intensively in a particular hobby. But they are more than adequate for what I do. So not all cheap tools are worthless. You expect limitations and work around them. The price point allows you to buy more of other stuff. And if it works to a persons satisfaction then why spend more just to say you spent more.

       

      So I know for 100% certain I will not be buying a quality mill or metal lathe. Just not gonna happen, way out of my price range. I don't want to just throw money away either. So if this tool sucks and will not do what I expect it to do adequately enough for what I want to do, then I want to know that too. But if people have used them with passable results for working on model parts then it would be a cool little toy to play with at a price point that won't be prohibitive. I am still on the fence. It has very mixed reviews with enough bad that I am leary still.

    • February 11, 2019 5:47 PM EST
    • A milling machine would be cool, but toy machine is a toy machine. Years ago I bought a Harbor Freight, bench top drill press, and while its not production grade, it does for me what it was advertised to do. And with a little creativity, I have turned some wood forms on it too, even though its not a lathe.

       

      Why would you look at that machine when you have a shop-smith?

    • February 10, 2019 10:00 PM EST
    • Lol

    • February 10, 2019 9:39 PM EST
    • Now the truth is coming out, everyone thinks Devon is producing all this great modeling on his own, but nope, he has a whole crew of little elves doing all the work while he sits back, gives orders and takes all the credit   Gives a whole new meaning to "Butt Modeler" doesn't it? 

    • February 10, 2019 8:13 PM EST
    • I also have club members printing for me as well.

    • February 10, 2019 7:40 PM EST
    • Devon Sinsley said:

      I have considered this as well Bruce

      He's got Dan printing for him, better to use his talents else where.

    • February 10, 2019 6:32 PM EST
    • I have considered this as well Bruce

    • February 10, 2019 6:14 PM EST
    • If you're just looking to fool around a bit with making some little stuff, you MIGHT consider getting a 3D printer instead.   They can still be frustrating, but it's really cool to be able to watch it print a part.  If you're not great with 3D design, you can just download stuff from Thingiverse and print it.  

    • February 11, 2019 11:27 AM EST
    • Oh yeah, that‘s a totally different animal. Thanks, Greg. 

    • February 11, 2019 11:20 AM EST
    • The Dash 9 is probably better served with a puller that presses on a screw in the half shaft. The taper fit probably requires this.

       

      If you used a puller like the USAT one, you would most likely rip the metal half axles from the nylon gear and strip the small holes that hold the half axle to the gear.

       

      In the picture below you see a half shaft removed from the gear, and the small screws that attach it.

       

       

       

    • February 11, 2019 5:48 AM EST
    • I’m just using generic PLA for both this and the gauge blocks.  It’s plenty strong for both. 

    • February 10, 2019 11:59 PM EST
    • Cool tool, Eric, thanks for sharing.  I don't know that i need it right now, but I do have several of those locos so may need it one day.  I'll download it for future printing.  What filament are you printing it with?

    • February 10, 2019 10:27 PM EST
    • Marco: this should work for any of the USA Trains engines. I imagine it would work for the Aristo Dash 9, but I’ve never seen one of those axles. I’ll connect offline about getting one of these to you. 

    • February 10, 2019 10:13 PM EST
    • Hi eric how are you would you also be kind and sig me up a set like thet for the SD70 and the GP38 is it also good for the F3’s?  Do you happen to also have a wheel puller for the Dash-9’s?  I know here on the forum Greg has had whee pullers for the dash 9. Please send me an invoice for the wheel pullers.  Thank you 

       

      marco