"The oil was expensive..."
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  1. #1
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    Default "The oil was expensive..."

    This probably isn't the right place to post this, but I have to vent somewhere. I went to look at a fairly recent used machine, a Thermwood CS45 5x10 CNC router with C axis. 4 years old. Nice machine, 150k or so new. Guy says he never really got the hang of it and closed up his shop. Broker says a toolchanger pocket got damaged in shipping, which seems odd, but I'll play along. It's in Atlanta, so a flight and a whole day to go see it. They're asking 99k which is too much and I have them down to 92k, which is worth the trip if the machine is as cherry as I'm being told.

    Well, it turns out the tool changer pocket got damaged by crashing another tool on top of it, which bent parts. Not great for a ceramic bearing spindle, plus he never bothered to fix it, which says a lot. I tell him to fire the spindle up. Can't seem to remember how, calls tech support. While he's doing that, I'm poking and prodding at the machine like you do. The machine has an automatic oiling system for the linear rails and the ball screws etc. Which, of course, is bone dry, other than a bit below the pickup. The lines... bone dry. Eventually he figured out how to turn the spindle on (which sounds fine) and notices me poking at the oiler. He tells me, rather cleverly

    "Yeah, after about a year it ran out of oil, and they wanted like a hundred bucks for oil so I disconnected it. But don't worry, I sprayed it with WD40 every week!"

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    That imaginary oil cost more.

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    Maybe a dumb question... But what does a C axis on a router offer you besides maybe broaching?

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    It's a little different than C on a lathe or a mill: you put a right angle tool on it and the C swings it around to different positions while still driving with the spindle. It's so you can saw or mill the sides of a part.

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    I think I would keep looking...

    Tom

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    There are people that don't have any business touching a machine. You found one!
    Evidently someone had 150 grand to buy the machine but wont spend $100 on oil.
    I'll bet his daddy bought it for a dysfunctional son.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Comatose View Post
    ... He tells me, rather cleverly, "Yeah, after about a year it ran out of oil, and they wanted like a hundred bucks for oil so I disconnected it. But don't worry, I sprayed it with WD40 every week!"
    New offer: $9,200

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    I almost never use WD40 but have used it as a cleaner. Anyway if you look at the price of 5 gallons of WD40 (probably the cheapest by volume) it's about the same as I pay for high end way oil. The spray cans have to be way more so what was he saving?
    Sorry to hear you wasted money and more importantly time on that trip.

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    Well at least we know he's just stupid and not a scam artist. Well not a very good one at least, or he would have put some used motor oil in it before you got there. How can you be selling a machine for 100G and forget how to turn the spindle on?

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    on the other hand. it took a year to empty oiler, weekly or monthly hitting rails with wd, but not used enough to remember how turn on machine. This machine has zero miles, no rust on rails, and one crash- you can knock off another 2 grand for oil issue?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Comatose View Post
    This probably isn't the right place to post this, but I have to vent somewhere. I went to look at a fairly recent used machine, a Thermwood CS45 5x10 CNC router with C axis. 4 years old. Nice machine, 150k or so new. Guy says he never really got the hang of it and closed up his shop. Broker says a toolchanger pocket got damaged in shipping, which seems odd, but I'll play along. It's in Atlanta, so a flight and a whole day to go see it. They're asking 99k which is too much and I have them down to 92k, which is worth the trip if the machine is as cherry as I'm being told.

    Well, it turns out the tool changer pocket got damaged by crashing another tool on top of it, which bent parts. Not great for a ceramic bearing spindle, plus he never bothered to fix it, which says a lot. I tell him to fire the spindle up. Can't seem to remember how, calls tech support. While he's doing that, I'm poking and prodding at the machine like you do. The machine has an automatic oiling system for the linear rails and the ball screws etc. Which, of course, is bone dry, other than a bit below the pickup. The lines... bone dry. Eventually he figured out how to turn the spindle on (which sounds fine) and notices me poking at the oiler. He tells me, rather cleverly

    "Yeah, after about a year it ran out of oil, and they wanted like a hundred bucks for oil so I disconnected it. But don't worry, I sprayed it with WD40 every week!"
    Wait WHAT? I thought I have seen/heard it all? You blow that money on a machine and are not worried if it is not lubed properly? Must be shitting cash???

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    Nothing more expensive than stupid.

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    Quote Originally Posted by memphisjed View Post
    on the other hand. it took a year to empty oiler, weekly or monthly hitting rails with wd, but not used enough to remember how turn on machine. This machine has zero miles, no rust on rails, and one crash- you can knock off another 2 grand for oil issue?
    I'm kind of in this camp. I'm not completely afraid of this machine just yet. Routers don't have coolant flying or abrasive metal chips. I'd be willing to roll the dice based on some quick checks with an indicator and a pry bar.

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    I wonder how much MDF he cut with the router? I bought a bridgeport that was used in an environment with MDF, that stuff is flippin' NASTY to machine tools!

    My Fadal had MDF dust caked on it too, still NASTY!

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    I have a (probably) stupid question. What makes a router a router and not a gantry type vmc? Spindle speed, overall design, or something that is not apparently obvious? I heard/read alot on here about routers and I always get the impression they are something either cheap, or low end, or homebuilt, or whatever. BUT at 150k it doesn't fit any of those "ideas" I've kind of formed in my mind...

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    Man you guys with the "knock a couple grand off it's probably fine" are so tempting...

    The backlash looked okay, the screws and blocks sounded a bit gravelly. It's too much money to take a flyer on, though, relative to the market value and relative to my needs for it. It'd be a "We could save a bunch of time and it'll eventually pay for itself maybe" machine, rather than a "printing dollar bills on day 1" machine for us. If I have to spend a couple months tweaking it and being down while we wait for parts, there goes the time savings.

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  26. #17
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    Routers don't have a lot of torque and don't have the rigidity to do steel. They rapid faster than a gantry (3000ipm isn't unusual) and they're designed for vacuum part holding with very big vacuum pumps. This one has an 18hp vacuum, anywhere from 10hp to 40hp is common. The tool holders are typically ISO30 or HSK63 rather than cat40. It's unusual for them to be able to tap.

    Basically it's a speed vs rigidity tradeoff.

    YouTube is a video of the model I was looking at machining aluminum. Not that impressive as a machining center, but over a 5'x10' area not that bad.

    There are plenty of Harry Homeshop routers out there, but there are plenty of real machines too.

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  28. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Comatose View Post
    Routers don't have a lot of torque and don't have the rigidity to do steel. They rapid faster than a gantry (3000ipm isn't unusual) and they're designed for vacuum part holding with very big vacuum pumps. This one has an 18hp vacuum, anywhere from 10hp to 40hp is common. The tool holders are typically ISO30 or HSK63 rather than cat40. It's unusual for them to be able to tap.

    Basically it's a speed vs rigidity tradeoff.

    YouTube is a video of the model I was looking at machining aluminum. Not that impressive as a machining center, but over a 5'x10' area not that bad.

    There are plenty of Harry Homeshop routers out there, but there are plenty of real machines too.
    Cool! Good info. I would say the milling of aluminum is pretty good. Not breaking records, but no slouch either. And an HSK holder over cat would be a definite plus (except maybe to the wallet!)... I don't think I have cut steel one time at my current job, been there almost a year now. All aluminum and brass, so that wouldn't be a dealbreaker for that environment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NAST555 View Post
    Wait WHAT? I thought I have seen/heard it all? You blow that money on a machine and are not worried if it is not lubed properly? Must be shitting cash???
    I took a college class on "entrepreneurship" taught by a self made millionaire. He came up with a product, developed it, made a company around it, then made so much money he had no idea what to do with it all. Still owns the company (or at least he did back then) and only stopped by to check in and play with the toys.

    Anyway, point of the story... he always drove a top of the line Porsche. All the options, can you make up some more options, kind of car. But he refused, absolutely refused, to pay for oil changes. They were around $500 according to him. He would thrash a new car for about a year, no maintenance, no nothing, then trade it in the next year for a new one.

    One day when I had him for class his car lit up telling him he had to take it in to be serviced. Immediately. He ignored it for a couple days till the car went into safe mode and would only go 25. As a college kid driving an old POS, I was amazed at this "safe mode". Anyway, he had it towed to the dealership and when he got there was told the water pump was bad and they would have it replaced in about an hour. He said don't bother, give me the green one, signed the paperwork and left.

    Now, you would have to know this guy. If you met him and knew absolutely nothing about him, he would seem like a completely normal guy. Grew up on a farm in a small community in Ohio. Wore normal clothes, did normal things, his house was one of the bigger ones in town, and was pretty well decked out, but nothing compared to some people I have seen that do not make anywhere near the money. For whatever reason, the Porsche was his one extravagance, his, I don't give a damn.

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