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Tabletop mill or small knee mill on stand

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Redmech

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#1
I took two years of machine tool in vo-tech in the late 90's. I've been a heavy equipment mechanic for the past 17 years. Worked for a Caterpillar dealer for over a decade and still work mainly on large Caterpillar mining equipment in a coal mine. I am a hobbyist knife maker and have been wanting to get a mill for sometime.

Grizzly in Speingfield Missouri is only two hours away from my home. This mill will go in my basement in my knife workshop. I don't know that my basement concrete floor is thick enough to support a Bridgeport or clone, and it won't fit thru the doors for a mill that large.

I'm looking at either a tabletop mill like perhaps the G0619 or G0755 table top or perhaps the 6" x 26" knee mill like the G0801, G0802, or G0728.

I think the table top mill will serve my current needs, like the G0619, but at that price I'm just 600$ away from the G0801. The G0801 looks to be a more solid more robust machine. The G0619 looks like it has a reverse that the G0801 does not. I don't think I really need reversing. I'm not thinking I will do any power tapping, I also don't think I want to do CNC. Which I understand some of the tabletop mills will do easily.

The g0619 is 1 HP while the G0801 is 1.5 HP

Also the G0755 seems to be a popular machine.

I also have some concern about the plastic gears in some of the smaller mills.

The main thing I guess is it seems like the G0801 might do heavier cuts, I may be wrong. I searched thru quite a few threads and didn't find anything relating to this topic.

So appreciate any and all help.

The G0801 looks like quite the machine, but I can't find really much info on it or the variations of that particular 6" x 26" mill. The 2000$ table top mills seem so close to just go ahead and get a small knee mill.
 

T Bredehoft

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#2
The versatility of the Knee makes this an easy choice (for advice). It's going to be a heavier (more substantial) mill and sometimes you just have to crank the table up into the mill cutter, the quill drive (mechanical or by hand) isn't good enough. Wish I had one.
 

tweinke

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#4
Get the biggest one you can afford and fit in your shop, is there an echo in here? Small work on a big machine is better than big work on a small machine. Spoken by an amateur with a PM-727m witch was as big as I could afford and fit well in my shop.
 

KarlB

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#5
Look at a Burke millrite knee mill. Smaller than a Bridgeport, breaks down into separate pieces for the move. It's vintage metal and bulletproof. No plastic anything. Takes Bridgeport tooling/accessories. You would have to watch for one to pop up on eBay or Craigs list. In 10 years it'll be worth more than you put into it.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

john.oliver35

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#6
While your looking for that Millrite, also keep your eye out for a Rockwell 21-100 mill. Like the Millrite it is smaller than a Bridgeport (about 900 lbs total as I recall) and can be broken down. I am very glad I stumbled onto one of these when I was looking at the bench mills. I have never regretted purchasing the 21-100. Don't know how the Millrite compares, but the I have heard good things about them and seen some amazing work shown on this Forum by some people with Burke's (check out .

Mind you - if I hadn't the old smaller knee mill, I would have bought a PM benchtop mill instead. One can spend a lot of time looking which you could spend cutting!
 

Redmech

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#7
The small Grizzly knee mill on a stand (G0801), which I thought was a larger machine than some of the bench mills.

Today I started comparing the G0619, G0761, G0755, and he G0801.

After comparing many specs between those machines. The G0761 seems to have the greatest capacities, such as spindle travel, max distance spindle to table, table size, table travel X and Y, also it's 2 HP and is single phase 220, comes with power feed, also the G0761 is 450 cheaper than the G0801 and also has reversible spindle.

I'm leaning pretty hard towards the G0761, which will also leave some funds for a vise, parallels, and other accessories. Then I have to decide on a vise.....

Nothing money can't get, just have to prioritize funds for a while longer.

I'm still scanning craigslist and other local sources for smaller mills within my budget, and that will fit where I have room to put it plus without getting too heavy.
 

tweinke

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#8
Just a thought you may want to check out the QMT offerings, If I remember correctly, they had listed on e-bay the PM-932 with no stand for about the same money as that G0761. May be worth looking at given QMT's warranty and customer service. Wouldn't hurt to call.
 

RodSME

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Jun 7, 2014
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#10
I have a G0619. I've had it for about 1 year. I've made quite a few parts with it. I bought it used on Craigslist. I should have bought a heavier mill. The column is not stiff enough in torsion. As such, there is too much vibration in the +/- X direction unless you take light cuts. I've added material to the column that improved the stiffness by a factor of three. If you do buy one, let me know and I'll send you info on how to stiffen the column. A friend nearby has a 619 and added the stiffeners and was very pleased with the result. Speed changes on the 619 are very easy, just push up/down buttons. The top speed of this mill is 1800rpm, for small carbide end mills, faster would be nice (the 801 goes to 2520). I must admit, the power tapping capability on the 619 is nice.

The G0801 looks like a nice mill. I've checked out the manual on the grizzly web site. The schematic on page 54 shows the on/off switch and the spindle direction switch, so it's possible the mill does have reverse. That would come in handy if the drill binds in the work and you need to back out. Cons for the 801 appears to be the need to change belt locations for speed changes. With only 9 speeds, that may be a bit limiting.

Hope this helps.
 

DAT510

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#11
've added material to the column that improved the stiffness by a factor of three. If you do buy one, let me know and I'll send you info on how to stiffen the column.
RodSME, any chance you could post your mods here or as a separate thread? I'm interested and I think others would be too. I have both a manual and cnc version of the G0619.

Best,

Chris
 

Rex Walters

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#12
I sadly had no room for anything other than a bench top mill, but I have to say I've been pretty happy with my g0762. I'm envious of living anywhere close to Grizzly!

The only complaint I've had with my mill are minor:

The gib lock handles were made from uselessly soft pot metal of some sort, and the handles were too long (sometimes interfering with the dial handles or table). I ended up just removing the handles and leaving the bare hex head screws. I hung a t-handled nut driver nearby.

The drawbar was a little too loose in the spindle and would rattle around. I just made a little bushing at the top of the spindle which helped tremendously.

The mechanical power switch rotating plastic knob eventually fell out, but I leave that on all the time anyway, and just use the electronic power controls and EPO button.

It's slightly out of tram in the nod direction (about 0.0015") but I doubt I could tram such a heavy square column head any better with shims (and dread the thought of trying).

Overall it's been a great machine.
 

Silverbullet

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#13
For my money I'd go large or go home. Get the biggest little knee mill you can , the table top models sound great but there very limited in lots of ways. Plus the swing of the head if you ever need to mill large pieces will help out the table mills are so limiting. You may not need all that but in a short time I bet you will.
 

petertha

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#14
I have an older Taiwan RF-45 type version of what's now sold at PM. For the size & price it was a good option. Many nice enhancements have been added & bugs ironed out. I would seriously get DRO, it makes the milling experience so much better on machines like these. You can read the feedback on the PM sub-forum & sounds like Matt is a very accommodating person.
http://www.machinetoolonline.com/PM-932M.html
 
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