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  1. #41
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    Where are you located in WA? I just bought a brand new Haas DM2 and I'm running in my garage.

    Feel free to shoot me a private message I'd love to help you out man!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobw View Post
    For about $800 you can just buy a single phase transformer for a Fadal, and skip
    all that rotary non-sense....
    This is very appealing!

    I was reading up on another thread on this forum about 1ph transformers on the Fadal and the OP mentioned performance loss.

    If I installed a single phase transformer, should I expect performance levels to be on par with the HAAS Tool Room mills?

    Thread for source:
    fadal single phase transformer 812 or 813?

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    Thanks again to everyone who has provided input!

    My shop doors are 10' tall, so I'd be surprised if I didn't have enough height. Worst case scenario, I could place it between the rafters and gain several more feet for Z axis extension.

    I'm not sure on the load rating of my floor... I'll try to get in contact with the contractor who poured it and get an estimation of compression rating and thickness.

    There have been a few 15-XT's mentioned now. How do they compare to the 3016 (which seems to be more popular)? From a few forum searches the slower 7500rpm spindle is obvious. It also sounds like the 3016/4020 machines use boxways vs linear ways and are just beefier machines which may last longer with less maintenance. Does all that seem right?

    Thanks again!

  4. #44
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    Looks like I've answered a couple of my questions.

    http://vmctech.com/wp-content/upload...nce-Manual.pdf

    According to the Maintenance Manual, running on single phase reduces the rapids. "The rapid traverse rate is reduced to not more than 700 IPM for machines with higher speed capability." This is due to the DC Cap bank not having sufficient power to recharge quickly at single phase. Still looks like I would have faster rapids and comparable cutting speeds to the HAAS TMxxP machines. They also mention spindle torque is reduced, but I did not see any hard numbers on that.

    Comparing the 15-XT to the 3016, I would loose a 150ipm cutting speed, and a little bed space as well. I'm thinking, for my intentions, the 3016 or 4020 are going to be better machines.

  5. #45
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    Big difference between the VMC15's and the 3016/4020...

    Pros and cons, I have both... Obviously the box ways are
    far more rigid, BUT!!! They require more maintenance.
    The linear ways seem to be more accurate (no stick slip) and
    less maintenance.

    The linear machines have a smaller single speed spindle. Its fairly
    easy to stall if you are getting up over a 3/4" twisty drill... Its
    not overly happy in steel with a 3" face mill. Tool life suffers a bit
    when you are trying to hog...

    The box machines (most of them anyways) have the 2 speed 15hp spindle... That
    15hp is at 100% duty cycle. 22.5hp for 5 or 15 minutes.. If you lose a 1/3rd of
    that, Big F'n Deal. The 2 speed head is pretty sweet, TON of low end torque..
    Example, I was running around a 1" twisty drill on a Fadal at about .012 a rev, no
    problems, moved the job over to a 25hp mazak and I had to dial it back to .004 a
    rev to keep the spindle from stalling.

    Watch for the 3016s and 4020s that have an 'L' or an 'A' after them, those are linear
    machines and I'm pretty sure they only came with the single speed 7.5hp spindle...

    I've never used one, so I don't know how rigid they are compared to the VMC15's.. They
    are big solid castings, were as the VMC15's are weldments, I don't know how much that
    effects rigidity.

    '93 and newer.. You want to see CNC88HS not just CNC88, the HS has a black face plate
    on the control, the straight up 88 is silver.. Though, a lot of straight 88's were up graded
    to the HS guts over the years.. You'll also run across quite a few rebuilds. Its not a 2001
    when the serial number starts with '92' and if the control has a silver face plate.. Though
    it might be worth taking a look, the guts are probably upgraded.


    Don't freak out if its not making a perfect circle, or the backlash numbers look big, or
    they say it can't take a cut... These are the reasons people ditch Fadals, and the reason
    for those problems is MAINTENANCE!!! Tool retention back to factory stock for about $100
    and a few hours.. And unless the ball screws are screwed, its thrust bearings, I don't
    even know what they cost anymore, $80 a set or something.. Take the time to set them up
    properly, and the time to set the back lash PROPERLY (a lot of people don't), and you can
    have almost a factory fresh machine... Play with the gibs and straps and adjust that
    all up nice.... Maybe a tweak or 2 on your gain settings and you're off...

    Of course, the tool changes will put you to sleep, and the rapids are fairly weak, and the
    accelerations aren't very impressive (but you can keep your vise handles on)..

    Its not a Mori, its not a Mazak, its a drop dead simple machine that is easy to work on,
    and cheap to fix (and they do break).. Parts are readily available from at least 4 different
    sources, as is free tech support.. They were basically the same machine from the late 80's
    up into the 2000's, and they sold a TON of them.. You can still send a machine out and have
    it rebuilt today, and there are several companies that have upgraded controls that are plug
    and play..

    No software options to worry about.. Its all there.. You want to add a 4th axis, buy the
    hardware and turn it on.. Rigid tapping, buy the e-proms, snap 'em in and turn it on.
    And when I say turn it on, I don't mean change bit 7 on parameter 2362... Its literally
    in ENGLISH. Rigid Tapping 1)yes 2)no... It really is that simple.

  6. #46
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    Bobw,

    That is very helpful information! Thank you for taking the time to write such a thorough outline for me!

    Sounds like the 15-XT is likely to be more reliable/easier to maintain. According to the Fadal Maintenance Manual, the 15-XT has the 2 speed 15hp spindle (it is only 7500rpm though). And it has the same X,Y,Z, travels as the 3016. My only hesitation with the 15-XT now is the feed rates and rapids.

    Looks like Nylons appreciate a VERY fast spindle, and feed rates. 1,000-4,000 sfm. So, even the 3016/4020 machines are not ideal for that material unless you are using a large cutter (~1" or bigger?).A router is probably the best tool for that job I'm guessing.
    - http://www.castnylon.com/Cast-Nylons...Guidelines.pdf

    With those things to consider, would I be just as well off with a 15-XT as it would be plenty adequate for aluminum? And then I would just sacrifice a little production speed? Or would the extra costs ($ and time) of the 3016/4020 be worth it for the materials and use I have in mind?

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    I don't cut a whole lot of it, but I think nylon would be pretty forgiving at being run with a slower SFM. Very sharp uncoated tools and maybe an air blast to keep things cool and prevent chip recutting (air blast may be needed no matter what, depending on your part geometry i.e. deep pockets or slotting).

    With Fadals, keep in mind that axis acceleration/deceleration and block processing speed will probably limit on your true feed rate compared to the theoretical maximum. If you are running parts with lots of complex curves/surfacing, newer controls (88HS or the modern fadal retrofits from Calmotion or ITS) will help with block processing and allow you to get closer to the mechanical maximum feed rate.

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    Plastics don't like high SFM, they like a high chip load. Nylon is not an exception. The proper tools make a huge difference. Not a fan of Fadal and I ran a brand new 1998 15xt for 5 years but I think it would not be a bad machine for your needs. Much better than a Haas TM, but that aint sayin much.

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  10. #49
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    3016 is a box way machine and well its more ridged that a XT15 its from what I have seen slower and uses a TON of oil.

    I ran my 15XT for 20+ years and never had a single service call on it ,,, I put a couple resolvers in the X axis motor only, they run like $200 and about a hour to swap out.

    I have a couple new vf2ss Haas mills and the 15XT is just as ridged as they are and for the most part even alum parts are cut at the same speed and feed as the Hass. Well the newer Haas mills have 12K spindle and the Fadal has a 7,500 RPM spindle to keep the Haas mill down in there power curve I run them at 8K most of the time for roughing Alum ... both machines well run at 200IPM all day. The biggest difference is the tool changer speed ,, but for small part runs there is little difference and any larger runs, I run large fixtures and spread the tool change time between a lot of parts, The job I swapped from the 15XT over to the vf2ss is 72 parts per run and the time went from 52 min on the Fadal to 48 min on the Haas. so that what 8% time savings is all.

    The 88HS control on the Fadal mills is a vary nice control and is easy to learn.

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    dhrider123,

    One other item to plan for - not immediately, but once you get into production - is a mist collector. For our Fadals, we've found the MistAway to be effective and priced reasonably. MistAway also has a nifty option to turn on the unit only when the coolant is flowing; cuts down on power consumption and increases unit/filter life. No doubt there are other mist collection options that members can suggest. IIRC, outlay for MistAway is ~$2,500.00.

    Fred

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    Fred,

    Thanks for the info! And for being so honest with recommending a local sale even though you have machines to sell.

    I'm not familiar with mist collectors yet. I'll start my research!

    Thanks again!

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    I just put a VMC in my garage 3 weeks ago, and its all the small things that started to add up quick.
    - Electrical: (I had to run larger wire to the garage and Panel is at the back of house so needed 100ft of 6 awg wire.)
    - Phase Converter
    - Buck Transformer $150
    - Power Disconnect Switch $70
    - Wire, Various Connectors, boxes, Flex Conduit $350
    - Coolant $200
    - 5 gal Way Oil $130
    - Tramp Oil Separator $400
    - Mist Collector $1300
    - Pull Studs $300
    - Chip Management(filter paper, material to make screens) $150


    I figured I would need a Mist Collector, but was going to wait a while to spread out the damage on the bank account. After one full day of running parts, it got moved up my list to buy it now.

    Its not crazy dollar amounts, but it all hits at once. Some of it could be kicked down the road but I also wanted to get the machine setup properly and then not worry about it. My biggest fear is the coolant going bad, as I have read the horror stories, especially with a home machine possibly not being used everyday. Was going to make a home brew oil separator, but by the time I added up doing it the right way and rather spending time using machine, I buckled and bought an oil separator.

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  17. #53
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    My 2 cents for the tool changer
    You basically get a part time employee for the one time initial investment, no workers comp, no paycheck to write them , no whining or showing up late.

    Re rigging and moving the machine in.
    If your in an area that may not look kindly to a massive rig rolling in, talk to a rep from each company once you get your short list or rigger picked out.
    If they can come out before the transfer and look at your place, they may have some suggestions or show you that "aw shit" you didn't notice.

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  19. #54
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    Agree on having the rigger come out. In the Portland area I spoke with Metro and Ness-Campbell. NC was at my door 45 minutes after the first phone call and spent some time going over everything. On a winding residential street next to a school bus stop. Came up with a good plan to keep as much weight off the driveway as possible to mitigate cracking the driveway. 5,000lb machine carried by a 14,000lb forklift on 4 tires poses a risk, something to think about. If you have a flat driveway you're in a much better position.

    Both riggers were close in rate and I believe Ness-Campbell handles Washington as well. They were the ones that craned the crashed Amtrak train off the bridge not long ago. If you want their contact info send a PM, it really has been a pleasure working with them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by D.D.Machine View Post
    I have a 1997 Fadal VMC15-XT with extended Z , I have been kicking around about selling
    D.D.Machine, PM sent!

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    I'm on the Fadal train. I purchased my 3016 from Freds and would do so again in a heartbeat. It 100% meets all your criteria, as well as many other size Fadals would. I really wanted at least a 10K spindle and the 21 tool changer (buying a CNC without one is just silly, IMO). It will most certainly fit under a standard garage door and I have 100A service to my garage (from a 200A main panel) with the machine running off of a 20hp RPC. I did have a small drill/tap style machine previously so I did have endmills and indicators and that kind of stuff. But I was able to get the machine, rigged, vises and other necessary stuff well within your budget. My Fadal has almost paid for itself in a few months.

    If you buy a Mini Mill or the like, I would buy new unless you find a good deal, maybe from someone off here. Resale is high and you could just make payments while theoretically generating income to pay it (you can easily buy a new car for the same price, that doesn't make squat and depreciates once you drive it off the lot).






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    Quote Originally Posted by kazlx View Post
    I'm on the Fadal train. I purchased my 3016 from Freds and would do so again in a heartbeat. It 100% meets all your criteria, as well as many other size Fadals would.
    Awesome! I'm definitely thinking the Fadal is the route I'll go! +1 and thanks for the photo with the Yeti in it too! That actually does a lot to give scale to the machine for me!

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    Quote Originally Posted by dhrider123 View Post
    Awesome! I'm definitely thinking the Fadal is the route I'll go! +1 and thanks for the photo with the Yeti in it too! That actually does a lot to give scale to the machine for me!
    I saw the screen name and had to throw that pic in there. My Banshee Legend is tucked around the back. There's a ton of info on Fadals on here and quite a few people willing to help. It's hard to beat for value and available parts. Check out FadalCNC.com | Replacement Parts for Fadal | Fadal CNC Machines

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    Quote Originally Posted by D.D.Machine View Post
    I have a 1997 Fadal VMC15-XT with extended Z , I have been kicking around about selling
    D.D.Machine,

    I've tried to PM you a couple of times, but it appears your inbox is full. Please let me know if you are still interested in selling.

    Thanks,
    Shane

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    Quote Originally Posted by carbonbl View Post
    Paging Bobw to copy and paste the Fadal manifesto in this thread...
    Would post #45 count as the "Fadal manifesto" or is the more to it? I'm in the early stages of research on a small CNC mill for prototyping work.

    All the parts I make are optics related so precision is important. Everything is aluminum except for tools and some lens mounts made from 303 stainless. The threads I tap most often are #0-80, 1-72, 2-56, M1.7, M2.0 I use only form taps for that (not on the stainless parts).

    Being able to accurately drill circular hole patterns very accurately without using a 4th axis seems attractive. BUT I'd go with a rotary 4th axis if it meant the patterns would be more accurate. Not much play on an 8-hole M2 pattern.

    BTW, not to hijack too much, but if I go CNC I'd need a lathe as well, and that machine would do a lot of the work since optics involves lots of cylindrical parts. So if there are advantages in terms of pairing certain CNC mills with some CNC lathes I'd be interested to know about that.

    Thanks!


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