SL5-T 11TE Control - Questions about Starting Up a lathe that has been sitting idle
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  1. #1
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    Default SL5-T 11TE Control - Questions about Starting Up a lathe that has been sitting idle

    Hello All,

    Been awhile since I last posted. A lot has been going on with me since then. I've bitten the bullet and have leased a space and will soon be filling it up with machines as I embark on starting my own business. I've been working on a business model and plan the last 2 years as I waited out a non-compete and saved up the capital to do this. I've collected some equipment and kept it in storage over this time but I will be needing 3 lathes very soon. One of which may be this machine in question. Now, this machine is much older, and much cheaper than my initial plan called for, but part of me loves the prospect of this old Mori SL lathe. I've ran a couple of SLs circa year 2000 (this one obviously much older) and they were great machines - although we did have live tooling issues with an SL300 circa 1999. I never did get a chance to diagnose exactly what was the cause unfortunately... If someone makes the argument to go newer for whatever reason, I will listen. Machine will run about 2 hours of cycles/day, 5 days a week - to give you an idea of usage.

    On to my actual question - thank you for reading, those of you who'll continue...

    I am looking at an SL5-T with an 11TE control. I don't know year. My question is knowing that this machine has sat for two years, untouched with no power, am I in for a big surprise when powering back up this machine. I would think any batteries would've been drained and is it possible/likely parameters have been lost? IF so, due to the age of this machine would that present extraordinary problems in getting this back in running shape? The gentleman who has the machine does not seem to know much about it. Asking Price is sub $10K, machine has live tools - looks quite nice, including the ways.

    The more I ramble on I am inclined to run away from this machine and deal for fear of the unknown. I'm not opposed to spending more and going newer, but am a sucker for Mori Seiki - I just don't have any experience going this far back.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated, especially those regarding issues firing up a new machine that has sat two years (I've never had to do this).

    Regards,

    Rollerman13

    edit: added note about no power

  2. #2
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    I would say the lathe is worth an amount of money that won't bother you if you scrap it.

    I'd also say there's an 80% chance it will fire right up and work fine.

    My SL2 is same vintage and sat for several years in a building with a roof leak and no heat. It had power, but screen was blank. I paid a few hundred bucks for it as it sat and a $25 part and some cleaning had it running great.

    If I needed that lathe I wouldn't pay more than a grand for it not running. Too big of a risk for me to go more.

    I believe 11t is a good control, but it isn't very common. I think there's many more 6T, 3T and 10T machines out there in comparison. You might look at what spares availability is before going further. I would also make damn sure it has an AC spindle. DC spindles are amp whores and the drives are often some abortion Fuji/Toshiba thing that hasn't been made since the 80's.

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  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by rollerman13 View Post
    .....I am looking at an SL5-T with an 11TE control. I don't know year. My question is knowing that this machine has sat for two years, untouched with no power, am I in for a big surprise when powering back up this machine. I would think any batteries would've been drained and is it possible/likely parameters have been lost?.....
    The 11 series controls used bubble memory. No batteries to maintain it needed. If it was running when warehoused, it should run again. That said if you get it, the first thing to do after powering up is get a complete backup made. Boards can fail.....

    The 11 series was pretty high end for a lathe control. Probably used on this machine to handle the C axis and live tools, though a 10 series could do that too.
    Last edited by Vancbiker; 05-10-2020 at 07:33 PM. Reason: added content

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  6. #4
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    Guys, thank you for the two responses. I think were I a braver man, or certainly more experienced with machine tool repair I would've bitten on this machine, but I'm going to pursue something decades newer, and obviously, pay much more with the understanding parts and service are easily available.

    Interesting that this control has bubble memory, I would not have guessed no battery.

    Regards,

    Rollerman13


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