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  1. #21
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    My opinion come from basically being a self taught engineer and a self taught machinist. I think turning the cranks, and creating set ups is a great way to start, then you can really appreciate the beauty of CNC. Once turning the cranks and watching the chips fly,becomes tedious then the focus becomes "how do I do this really fast, and get it done?" The local college here sold off all the manual machines. They teach CNC engineering, I've worked with some of these guys. It seems to me that there are gaps in their education especially in machine maintenance. Maybe that is unimportant for the engineer. A few have done some projects out side of school on my machines and marvel at the setups I use, certainly not rocket science, ........I suppose a lot of creativity is a born with thing.

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  3. #22
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    AGAIN, many thanks.

    I was in a big rush on my last post and perhaps wasn't clear. Perhaps I'm violating some forum guideline, too, with this question.

    What BRAND NAME RECOMMENDATIONS do PM'ers have for the lower-end, small-ish, student-appropriate, "import-quality" machines suitable for beginners? There are so many out there, and they all seem to originate from Taiwan or China.

    It's just not my area of expertise, so I don't know. Now, robots, I could talk about all day....

  4. #23
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    "I've seen guys that only know CNC and they're fine. Plus it's not like it's hard to operate a manual mill lathe."

    You can snap off a lot of end mills if somebody just hands you the keys to a VMC without any other
    training.

    If the true goal is to instruct what machinist do, rather than train a machinist, I suggest an internship rotation
    in an industrial lab. In my workplace the mix is one NC lathe and about ten manual lathes, two VMCs, and
    about a dozen vertical mills, all set up basically as EZ track profilers.

    Nice thing about an EX track is you can run it NC or manual. You don't get a plunge axis though.

    Oh yeah, and two wire EDM machines. One of them brand new.

    I also suggest a *strong* course element in metrology. Starting with this is how a micrometer works, going
    up CMM stuff.

  5. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by tygerdawg View Post
    What BRAND NAME RECOMMENDATIONS do PM'ers have for the lower-end, small-ish, student-appropriate, "import-quality" machines suitable for beginners? There are so many out there, and they all seem to originate from Taiwan or China.
    The brand-new burners are going to be from China or Taiwan. Taiwan stuff is usually better than Chinese, but it varies a lot.

    Anyway, I'd start at Grizzly, in their midrange (meaning avoid the low-price-at-any-cost offerings). There are many reviews of these machines, so some quality time on research will uncover the weaknesses and allow focus to form.

    As part of the research, determine how well fifteen year old machines are supported - are repair parts available, or not?

    Beware of buying machines that don't weigh enough for what they claim to be, and don't buy combination tools like Smithy and its clones.

    Then buy a sample or two and loose the students on them. It will soon become apparent which makes and models are up to it.
    Last edited by Joe Gwinn; 04-27-2016 at 08:18 AM. Reason: afterthought

  6. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Gwinn View Post
    The brand-new burners are going to be from China or Taiwan. Taiwan stuff is usually better than Chinese, but it varies a lot.

    Anyway, I'd start at Grizzly, in their midrange (meaning avoid the low-price-at-any-cost offerings). There are many reviews of these machines, so some quality time on research will uncover the weaknesses and allow focus to form.

    As part of the research, determine how well fifteen year old machines are supported - are repair parts available, or not?

    Beware of buying machines that don't weigh enough for what they claim to be, and don't buy combination tools like Smithy and its clones.

    Then buy a sample or two and loose the students on them. It will soon become apparent which makes and models are up to it.
    Pretty much this ^^^

    I know discussion of these quality of machines is forbidden on here but I hope that the mods can make an exception in this case because I think we all cringe at the thought of a brand new, careless student taking the handles for the first time on a nice, American machine.

    Grizzly seems to have "decent" quality for beginner/hobbyist type equipment that is going to see abuse. You will have some problems, some caused by the students, some by the equipment quality, but all-in-all, they are likely your best bet. For the middle-range students (after they've cut their teeth) then you can move on up to good American iron that can really be appreciated by the students.

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    I vote for a good grounding in manual work even though the student is likely to be using CNC for a living. The reason is that on a lathe you can watch a chip form close up and see things like false edge buildup and chips curling around and scarring a clean cut. With CNC, you close the door and something starts up amid a shower of coolant, then you get to see the result. Since you are trying to teach engineers how to design for manufacturing, the more they understand about the mechanisms of the processes, the better they can do it. Even if they never turn a crank again, they need that foundation.

    I third or fifth, or whatever the counts is, votes against 3 in 1 machines.

    Bill

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  9. #27
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    Don't concentrate only on the machines themselves, but make sure that enough 'accessories' are available. My daughter is at a local engineering college, new build, cost millions, award winning architecture and all that, and the lathes all have QCTPs with one tool holder per machine. One! So any job that requires more than one tool takes for ever to do because each change has to be set up from scratch.

    Also, make sure the budget covers sufficient hand tools. When I did my training in the Good Old Days, our apprentice school had precisely one rat-tail file between about twenty five of us.

    Mind you, we had a set of (what I now know are) Jo blocks, still in their anti-rust wrapping. "What are these, Mr Roberts?" I asked in my innocence. "Ah, those are... those are... Ah, here's Mr Long, you can ask him." So I asked Mr Long. "Ah," he said, "Those are... those are... there now, I saw them in a book not long ago, but I can't recall their name at the moment. Why don't you ask Mr Buttimore?" So I asked Mr Buttimore, second in command, and the only instructor who knew anything about anything. He explained what they were, what they were for, and that he had no idea why we had them; he would rather have had more rat-tail files.

    George

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    Hard to believe the instructor didn't have the students making toolholders. Teaching opportunity lost. Reverse engineering, set up a minor production run, final inspection,team projects.

    Dave

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  13. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by winger View Post
    Hard to believe the instructor didn't have the students making toolholders. Teaching opportunity lost. Reverse engineering, set up a minor production run, final inspection,team projects.

    Dave
    A valid point, but my experience is that there is no time available to deviate from the main teaching, which is designed to fulfil the requirements of the exam board which awards the qualification. There would be a mountain of planning, paperwork and procurement to climb, and as like as not the department budget doesn't cover the extra materials needed.

    George

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    Digging this thread up...

    All this talk about academic workshops makes me wanna show the one I get hired to supervize once in a while.

    No CNC in use, all manual.
    After completing a course they (first year Mech. Eng. students) have to design AND build something to a set of specs with a group.
    About 6 persons per group.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails overzicht-6.jpg   overzicht-2.jpg   overzicht-3.jpg   overzicht-4.jpg   overzicht-1.jpg  



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