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  1. #1
    IanT's Avatar
    Lives in Gnosall (Stafford), United Kingdom. Last Activity: 12 Hours Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 6.
    Hi,
    I am in the process of choosing a milling machine for hobby use.
    Mainly milling aluminium, and occasional mild steel.
    I intend to convert it to CNC in the future.
    Part of the reason for wanting to do this is to have a useful tool, much of the reason is the learning exercise.

    Space in my garage is limited so I am only looking at small bench top machines.
    I do not have the knowledge to take a gamble on a second hand old Ebay purchase.
    I have a few under consideration: Sieg SX2.7, Sieg SX3, Warco Major and Axminster ZX30M.
    Are there others I should be looking at in this size & price range?

    Out of the ones listed...
    Which would be the easiest to convert to CNC?
    Realistically, what level of accuracy can I expect to achieve for a reasonable price?

    The SX2.7 is probably the favorite at the moment.
    Would this be a good choice?

    Thanks,

  2. #2
    Ian. First welcome to the forum you will find it a fountain of knowledge

    I have had and converted a Warco WM18 I have also helped in a conversion of a Seig mill. I used Linuxcnc on both.

    There is quite a lot of working in doing a conversion.

    Personally I would not go with a round column mill like the Major If you can find a mill with ball screws that would be a big advantage when it comes to conversion. Good luck with that tho.

    Have a read through some of the build logs and do some research before buying anything. (as you are doing)
    ..Clive
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  3. #3
    IanT's Avatar
    Lives in Gnosall (Stafford), United Kingdom. Last Activity: 12 Hours Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 6.
    "Avoid round column" seems to be the general consensus. One of the reasons why sx2.7 is currently top of my list. Thanks.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Clive S View Post
    If you can find a mill with ball screws that would be a big advantage when it comes to conversion. Good luck with that tho.
    Wouldn't that be because unlike lead screws ball screws turn fairly easily in response to force applied to their axis unless a significant holding torque is applied?
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by magicniner View Post
    Wouldn't that be because unlike lead screws ball screws turn fairly easily in response to force applied to their axis unless a significant holding torque is applied?
    I wish we all had your wisdom:
    ..Clive
    The more you know, The better you know, How little you know

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Clive S View Post
    I wish we all had your wisdom:
    I think he means that they can be back driven more easily from the cutting forces. Or for the Z axis may tend to drop under their own weight.
    I think lead screws would be most likely be fitted over ballscrews on a manual machine just due to cost.

    Yes avoid the round column as you loose position when adjusting in Z.

    Iíve not looked at the sx2.7 but wm16 or 18 are top of my list should I get a mill as they look well made (and would match all the Warco stuff I have!)
    Building a CNC machine to make a better one since 2010 . . .
    MK1 (1st photo), MK2, MK3, MK4

  7. #7
    Hi Ian,
    I am currently converting a Warco GH universal. I have it all in CAD and would be happy to explain how and what I have done so far.
    Regards Simon

    Sent from my SM-G925F using Tapatalk

  8. #8
    IanT's Avatar
    Lives in Gnosall (Stafford), United Kingdom. Last Activity: 12 Hours Ago Has been a member for 0-1 years. Has a total post count of 6.
    I have never looked properly at the Warco range.
    The GH universal is too big for the space I have available, but the WM16 and 18 may be an option.
    I think Warco exhibit at the Midlands Model Engineer Exhibition. I will go and have a look at their lathes then.

    Thanks Simon for the offer. I will remember that when nearer the time to start. It could be very helpful.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Clive S View Post
    I wish we all had your wisdom:
    I though you'd be interested in a basic feature of the technology almost everyone here is interested in using, would you rather I followed the advice of W.C. Fields? ;-)
    You think that's too expensive? You're not a Model Engineer are you? :D

  10. #10
    m_c's Avatar
    Lives in East Lothian, United Kingdom. Last Activity: 2 Hours Ago Has been a member for 9-10 years. Has a total post count of 2,073. Received thanks 232 times, giving thanks to others 5 times.
    There's a European supplier who will supply their machines already fitted with ballscrews (and I think steppers/servos), but I can't remember their name.
    IIRC they were based in Austria, but it's been a few years since I looked at their website.
    Avoiding the rubbish customer service from AluminiumWarehouse since July '13.

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