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Millrite Pricing And Comparison To A Rockwell Mill?

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Buickgsman

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#1
Hello all, its been a while since I have posted here. I have the opportunity to pick up a Millrite mill, not sure of the model # as I have been told very little about it other than if it is cleaned up a bit it will be close to new. So assuming it is a nice machine, and hasn't been worked over or painted how would this machine compare to the Rockwell vertical mill that I have now. My Rockwell 21-100 is very nice and I have a considerable amount of $ tied up in the purchase of it and finding a few parts. Is it worth it to potentially replace the Rockwell with the Millrite if nice? What can one expect to pay for a Millrite in nice shape?

Thanks!

Bob
 

Bob Korves

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#2
I am on my second Millrite and they are nice machines for hobby machinists. I know very little about the Rockwell, so I will leave it to others to compare them. The Millrite is definitely bigger and heavier. Millrites are well designed and built, just make sure it is not worn out and that everything works. I do not know of any weak points in the Millrite design, and it is a pretty conventional knee mill design. If you want specific information, feel free to PM me. You also might want to join the BurkeMills Yahoo group. Prices vary with location and condition. They are pretty popular, at least around here in California, so don't wait too long to decide or it may be gone. My first Millrite was pretty worn out, and I paid $1000 for it, and sold it for that later. My second Millrite came with some other stuff as a lot deal, so breaking out the mill price alone would be just guessing. I got an unused (new but dirty, no rust) 1967 Millrite with no extras, a like new Dumore 44-011 tool post grinder with the case and all the factory goodies plus more, an unused import angle drill press vise, and an unused set of 1/4-1" lathe arbors for $1600. That was from a friend, and I don't suspect you will be able to make that good of a deal!

Edit: There were lots of options on Millrites when new, motors, table sizes, knee size, power feeds, rapid or fine feed quill, nodding or just swiveling heads, and lots more. My new one has a 8x32 table, rapid quill, and everything else standard.
 

eeler1

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#3
What bob said. some mill rites cannot be trammed front to back, only side to side. If that's critical to you, make sure to check.
 

Bob Korves

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#4
What bob said. some mill rites cannot be trammed front to back, only side to side. If that's critical to you, make sure to check.
What Jon said. If the head only swivels, you cannot tram the head front to back (unless you scrape it in!). The only time I ever used the nodding function on my first Millrite was to tram it in, and it was a bit fussy. I even made a tool so I could use the table to support and adjust the head for front to rear tram by using the knee crank. No worm for adjusting like on a Bridgeport. On my "new" machine, when trammed with nothing on the table it is .001" high front to back over the 8" table, a few tenths less when I put the 6" vise and 8" rotary table on it, and probably less yet with a load on it. It is common for mills without the nodding function to be set up that way to allow for wear. The "new" machine is much more rigid than the older one, not sure whether that is because of the sturdier swivel only head, the wear in the old machine, or both.
 
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wawoodman

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#5
I'm very happy with my Rockwell, except for the lack of power feed for the X. And from what I've read, finding an original is near impossible, and adapting one is beyond my skillset.

If you're happy with the Rockwell, I would stay with the devil you know!
 

USNFC

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#6
I have both the Rockwell and the Millrite. They are both great machines. If you don't need a larger work envelope, the Rockwell is a great machine. My plan was to get the Millrite (super good deal), and sell the Rockwell. I still haven't brought myself to let the Rockwell go. I love it. But the Millrite is the one that has been getting used the most (granted mostly due to the powerfeed). I guess my answer isn't much help, so you could do like me and get the Millrite and keep both! As for price, this varies drastically depending on demand in your location. Typically around $1500 for a midpoint. I've seen it vary from $200-$3500 though.
 

the gentleman

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#7
The Burke Millrite is a great mill, I got it down in my basement and the 8 X 36 inch table is a great size. I have had Rockwell mills before and they are a great mill too.
 

Uglydog

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#9
Nothing against Millrites. I've rebuilt two.
No experience with Rockwells.
Sorry to complicate life. But, I frequently see small VanNormans in the NE for that price range.
May or may not be a better fit for you. I like the Horizontal option.

Daryl
MN
 

markba633csi

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#10
Sorry for the ignoramus question but what is a small Van Norman? Don't they all weigh 59 bililon pounds?
Mark S.
 

4gsr

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#11
Sorry for the ignoramus question but what is a small Van Norman? Don't they all weigh 59 bililon pounds?
Mark S.
A No. 6 Van Norman mill is around 700 lbs. A number 12 is around 1200-1400 lbs. A number 16 I'm guessing around 3200-3400 lbs. And there are some larger one's out there too!
Some of the Van Norman gurus can can correct me on weights if I'm way off.
 
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