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jimleach
14-08-2014, 08:31 AM
Hello

I am looking for some advise on the possible purchase of a cnc router. We are a small joinery / furniture shop, we currently have several products which require cnc'd components which we sub contract out. the guy who does them is very good and doesnt charge a great deal however its an hour round trip to him and im starting to think it would really benefit our business if we had our own machine. My personal experience of running one goes back about 15 years when i used to use an scm record 120.

I am now trying to work out is where best to invest what could be quite a lot of cash and get a machine that will be of real benefit and not a constant headache. Our ideal requirements are fairly simple and would be:
8x4 vacuum bed
Ability to accurately and consistently cut shapes out of upto 30mm birch ply
Face drill.
Relatively fast when running
Reliability

Although I am fairly technically minded and not really afraid of tinkering with machines or electronics we are just too busy to be doing this on a regular basis.

I know from memory that a 2nd hand SCM 120 would do everything i need and they seem to pop up fairly cheap at auction but these machines are now 20 year old and im unsure whether they would end up costing a fortune in maintenance. I am constantly being warned off chinese machines but these are generally by people selling 2nd hand old machines, so i guess im looking for advise from people who actually run them, ideally on a commercial level. I suppose i am most worried about buying one which requires a lot of work to get up and running and just not having the time to do it. and not getting the support or having problems acquiring spares.

Kind Regards

Jim

alboy
14-08-2014, 12:41 PM
Hi Jim

I can't really help you much with the use of a Chinese machine yet but I have ordered one that will be with me in a couple of weeks. The machine will be used in a production environment however. There are good machines to be had from China but sorting out the wheat from the chaff is quite difficult.

The main problem I could see was the availability of spares and support. The spares issue was addressed by ordering some spare parts with the machine, an extra spindle and a couple of drivers. Support may be an issue but I tested this to some degree by talking to the supplier to judge whether language would be a problem. There was no problem there and any email queries I sent were answered quickly.

My choice regarding the Chinese machine was of course finance led, a machine sourced from the UK to a similar (in some cases lesser) spec would have cost me 24k plus. The machine form China cat me under half of that including import duties and taxes.

A quick spec of the machine I ordered is.

1325 model, will take a full 8x4 sheet with room to spare.
Leadshine drivers and hybrid servo motors.
Hiwin rails.
Helical rack and pinion on x and y axis with anti-backlash gearboxes
4kw water cooled spindle.
T slot bed
Anti-backlash gearboxes
Heavy gauge Steel construction throughout (weighs 1600kg)
Lubrication system
4 chamber dust extractor included.

The control options for the machines from China tend to be either NC Studio, DSP or Syntec although Mach controllers are starting to become more common.

During the build of the machine I was kept updated with pictures and videos of the progress, which was reassuring.

Don't know if this helps you at all.

Cheers

Alan

jimleach
14-08-2014, 02:16 PM
Thanks for for that Alan im will be very interested to here how you get on with it, are you planning to set it up and commission it yourself? do you mind me asking which company you opted for?

Kind Regards

Jim

alboy
15-08-2014, 01:07 PM
HI JIm

Yes I will commission it myself, should be very little to do as the machine was prepared and tested in the factory, will need to connect up things like the water cooler for the spindle and the leads between the controller box and machine and just check nothing has come loose in transport. Still trying to find someone with a forklift to help move it :-)

I will let you know how it performs as soon as I can.

Cheers

Alan

stepmores
16-08-2014, 04:37 AM
i am eric from china. cnc router maker. i am glad to see you chose our chinese machine. here i can see a good review for now to our chinese cnc router. i am very glad to know it. as some customers dont trust our chinese machines. of course, it depends on which company you choose. there really huge quantity companies in china. and it is not easy to find the best one. i just registered this forum because i think i can get more information about feedback or review on cnc router. i like to design cnc machines and keep improvement. for a seller. i am always entangled to make cheaper machine or keep high quality ones. as some customer like cheap . but after few years selling and service after sales. i have one important idea. for one machine, the most important thing is the customers feeling of using . of course. it mostly depends on the controller. like you say mach3 are starting to become common. but for some customers, mach3 is complicated to use. and they also want to use it. maybe after few days using. they can learned. haha. i really hope there is only one controller system. so we dont need to be entangled about which control system should we sell . maybe customers have same idea as me. haha.

stepmores
16-08-2014, 04:44 AM
hi jim and Alan
i am always thinking how smart foreign customers can handle everything. i mean no questions from customers after sold. it seems most customers buy from china has certain enough knowledge about cnc router. they are also keen to modify our machine. it makes me very surprised. anyway, hope you can get a good machine and post review on forum. i am very looking forward to it. hope more and more customers can buy machine from our china.

ATESI
04-10-2014, 01:38 PM
Hi Jim
We just purchased a 4' X 8' ATC machine from Dexian (do not use them), the machine is beautiful but like a lot of the Chinese vendors their post sale support sucks. I ordered the machine in May and received it in September, Software is not OEM it is a copy that does not work, bought the machine with a Syntec Control and their is no english support. The equipment was delivered with no manuals, drawings or wiring diagrams. We are making arrangements to install a new MachMotion control that runs Mach3 and has US and english support, online training videos and tech support that we can talk to and can do online diagnostics real time.
No matter who you use in China their prices are all the same, I would spend more time investigating their post sale support because they will tell you anything to get the sale.
The machine listed below was $23570USD
PS: go with the servos, or machine runs smooth as glass.

1 XY working area Your requested 1200x2700mm
2 Z axis 400mm
3 4th rotary device
Diameter 300mm, Including Chuck, Sliding plate, Japan
YASKAWA Servo Motor + Japan YASKAWA Servo
Driver, Reducer
4
Auto tool changer
Magazine
Linear Automatic tool changer with 8 positions
5
X,Y,Z Traveling
Positioning
Accuracy
0.02mm/300mm
6
X,Y,Z Repositioning
Accuracy
0.01mm-0.02mm/300mm
7 Working Table Vacuum & T-slot table
8 Frame
heavy duty structure with Thicken steel Square Tube &
bigger steel gantry
9 X, Y Structure
Taiwan HIWIN #25 square Linear guide, Helical rack & gear
transmission
10 Z Structure
Taiwan HIWIN #25 square Linear guide, Taiwan TBI ball
screw transmission
11
Max. Engraving
Speed
25m/min (depending on the processing material)
12 Max. Cutting Speed 15m/min (depending on the processing material)
13 Spindle 9KW HSD Air-cooling ATC spindle from Italy
14 Inverter Taiwan DELTA inverter 11kw
15 Spindle Speed 0-24000RPM
16 Spindle Tool holder 8 pieces of ISO30
17 Collet for ISO30 20 pieces
18 Drive Motors 850W Japan YASKAWA Servo Motor + 1000W
YASKAWA Servo Driver19 Working Voltage 220V, 1 Phase
20 Command G Code
21 Operating System Taiwan SYNTEC Control System
22 Computer Interface USB interface and RJ45 network
23 Safety level
Soft limit switch (Shock absorption pad)
Japanese Omron limit switch
French Schneider rotary safety switch on the control box
Wires, high soft shielding twisted-pair cable, fire-resistant
and with low failure rate, could be bent min 30,000,000 times
24 Lubrication system Auto lubrication system
25 Auto tool sensor Yes
26
Mist cooling sprayer
for Soft-metals
Simple water mist cooling sprayer system
27 Dust collector
3KW dust collector system with double dust bags, dust hood,
dust pipe, dust holder
28 Software Type 3 / ArtCAM
29 Packing size
1. Outside package: Standard marine export plywood cases
2. Inner package: Stretch film and plastic film for humidity
Packaging size: About 3480*2230*2000mm
30 Net weight 1500kgs
31
Gross weight with
packaging
1800kgs

ATESI
04-10-2014, 01:46 PM
My neighbor has purchased a machine from OmniTec and they are sending a man to commission it for $2000 from China to Florida.

alboy
05-10-2014, 09:57 PM
[QUOTE=ATESI;62187]Hi Jim
We just purchased a 4' X 8' ATC machine from Dexian (do not use them), the machine is beautiful but like a lot of the Chinese vendors their post sale support sucks. I ordered the machine in May and received it in September, Software is not OEM it is a copy that does not work, bought the machine with a Syntec Control and their is no english support. The equipment was delivered with no manuals, drawings or wiring diagrams. We are making arrangements to install a new MachMotion control that runs Mach3 and has US and english support, online training videos and tech support that we can talk to and can do online diagnostics real time.
No matter who you use in China their prices are all the same, I would spend more time investigating their post sale support because they will tell you anything to get the sale.
The machine listed below was $23570USD
PS: go with the servos, or machine runs smooth as glass.


Glad your machine is working well.

I think that if you are buying from China then support and after sales are something that one can reasonably expect to be lacking somewhat, I took the approach that getting a quality machine at a very competitive price outweighed the lack of support to a certain degree, it is diffcult because of the time differences involved and the focus on sales by the Chinese manufacturers/suppliers to find a company that has a good grasp on after sales customer service. I wonder how much extra the machines would be if they would provide a dedicated after sales team.
Should you have a fault with a machine from China it is most likely that if a spare part is required it could take up to a month to get to you and you would probably have to pay the postage for the return of the faulty part as well as the postage for the replacement part, depending on value and size of course.

It is a gamble buying from China but where else are you going to find machines to the specs they provide at the cost they supply them.
Any CAM/CAD software supplied by Chinese companies will be a copy, many will supply original software but at an extra cost of course and it is generally cheaper to buy it yourself
I have an English language manual in PDF format for the EZ series Syntec controller if that is any good to you. I think that anyone considering buying from China should think seriously as to the level of support required, If you are confident with using a machine and don't feel you need tuition or support regarding its use then by all means buy from China but if you need the machine to be set up or to be shown how to use it then maybe a local supplier who can provide such a level of support would be better (but then again care needs to be taken as many local suppliers charge for support contracts separately) would be better but be prepared to pay up to 4 or 5 times the price of a Chinese machine.

My Chinese machine had some annoying issues on arrival but none that I couldn't sort out ( apart from the fact it took them longer than I would have liked to supply the password for the MFR settings on the DSP controller).

The quality of the Chinese machines has improved considerably over time but you still have the attitude that they are supplying a product at a cheap price and do not think much beyond that. After sales service is somewhat of a mystery to them at the moment but don't forget they are really only providers of machines but you are correct that they make promises of after sales service that they should present accurately as a limited service.

I haave experienced after sales service from 2 Chinese companies, both supplying CNC machines, one was very poor but the other has been very responsive and has quickly replied to emails and answered any queries I have made.

It is also worth remembering that many of the companies will advertise themselves as manufacturers where in fact, they are only a trading company buying in from manufacturers and selling on.

Hope you get much use out of your machine.

Chers

Al

ATESI
05-10-2014, 10:14 PM
Thank you A for the manual offer, I have the english manual for our control (Syntec 6MB) but it may as well be in Chinese because it is so vague. I am taking a different approach now, I have a friend living in Shanghai and will be acting a a mediator, he is a local with a PHD and works with computer aided medical equipment.

alboy
05-10-2014, 11:14 PM
Sounds like the usual translation of a manual. See if your friend can convert it to a CAT scanner, will make more money than a CNC machine.

Good luck.

Al

jimleach
04-11-2014, 09:36 AM
Hi Al

We have been too busy to really look into things properly yet. now you have your machine how is it running? im still struggling to decide if i should go down the new from china or a 2nd hand established brand, SCM, masterwood etc etc.

alboy
04-11-2014, 11:01 AM
HI Jim

The machine is running very well indeed, the control software (DSP) took only a short while to master, very easy to use, hand held terminal very useful, not as feature rich as Mach3 but is doing the job quite adequately. It is a lot of machine for the money, more than I expected to be honest, very solid. There is no way I could have built my own machine to the spec provided and I have a brand new machine at less than the cost of a second hand branded machine. Yes support is an issue, mainly due to the location of the supplier but I am confident that the machine will meet my demands easily. The electrical and motor parts should be fairly easy to obtain (leadshine) should they ever need replacing should they ever need replacing. I could have bought an entire spare machine and still been better off than going the second hand route lol.
Need any more info just PM me.
Cheers

Al

mischaub
19-12-2014, 08:34 PM
Hi Atesi
I would be very very very happy to get the Syntec 6MB Manual, as I have no chinese friend, unfortunately :-)
Hoping for your kind pity!
Mischa