minimal cost Haas Mini Mill I or II
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  1. #1
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    Question minimal cost Haas Mini Mill I or II

    Who has any sensible thoughts on the absolute minimal cost Mini Mill I or II purchase.

    We are talking about maximum penny pinching here.

    Stick with base Mini Mill I or splash on the Mini Mill II?

    What options, if any?

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    My father and I just purchase a 2019 Mini Mill 2. We were on a TIGHT budget, but still opted to load the machine well and have yet to regret a single decision. I would, however, be regretting not getting basically every one of them on a daily basis. It can be done however you choose, but efficiency in setups, tool capacity, and process reliability led us to purchase a few big upgrades (for us).


    Probing

    20t umbrella atc (would've preferred the 30t sidemount, but compromise)

    HSM

    High pressure coolant

    P cool

    Chip auger

    M codes

    Rigid tap

    And a few others I think I'm forgetting.


    I'll be honest, I wouldn't want the machine to be any less equipped myself. I am the sole operater of it in our small basement shop, do lots of 1-2 piece prototyping and the options were chosen to help us be more efficient.


    The difference between base and loaded as we got was minimal in the grand scheme.

    Really can't talk highly enough of the wireless probing. It makes setups and doing wonky things much easier and gives confidence in not having slight miss-matches across operations.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

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    What kind of parts are your running and what materials? Penny pinching the wrong stuff can cost you and you will be kicking yourself later.

    Absolute minimum options for me as a general purpose job machine would be HSM machining, probe, 10k spindle, auger and rigid tap. The problem with splashing on a mini 2 is you may as well get VF-2 if you the space and power. Base price is 13k difference and the mini doesn't even include rigid tap so so its more like "only" $11,5k base price difference and the mini comes with only 6000rpm on standard spindle. Once you start adding all the options that tooling the price percentage difference becomes so little you will get a whole lot more value in in a VF-2. I know you got to cut the price off at some point but it its a consideration.

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobsYourUncle View Post
    Who has any sensible thoughts on the absolute minimal cost Mini Mill I or II purchase.
    There's a 2018 one on this site (PM) for $26,000. Even shipping to Denmark should not be over $5,000. Should be 3 but most shippers are crooks.

    I would consider it.

  6. #5
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    I have a Mini Mill and it works well for me.
    For a mini...its not really that much smaller footprint then a VF-1, but much less travels.
    And when you start adding some very basic items to the Mini your into VF-1 territory.
    Start adding to the MiniMill 2 and its pricey.

    So I bought the Mini as I'm tight on space and have several VF-1's and a VF-2 for the larger stuff.
    The Mini is nice to run small jobs, less power needed and being small travel its chip to chip quicker then the bigger siblings. Table is higher, so less bending and easier to see...kinda***.
    Down side of the Mini

    Pain to clean
    Pain to setup with small door off center
    Drop something off the table...kiss it goodbye.

    *** The Higher table is nice but between that, small offset door and no side window access, your not leaning in very far to see or reach, nor are you going in through the side windows...as there ain't none. And yes, I meant to day "ain't" and "ain't none" cause not having them is stupid. And in the words of Forest Gump, stupid is as stupid does.
    This might be my biggest dislike of the machine...can't see back of part, can;t get to left of table. Can't get in to clean the chips that accumulate in the left back corner, under the table. If you drop something off the table you hope its magnetic and light so you can stick an extendable magnetic in and try to fish it out. If SS, Alum or plastic you hope it falls someplace you can see, hope you can knock it out in the open OR you hope the auger doesn't destroy it on its way out. If larger...then you hope the part you dropped doesn't lodge itself in the auger...having to pull chute and auger is a royal pain...but aside from removing panels..its your only way in.


    Machine is LOW power...cool for the small stuff..but I forget when trying to take a roughing cut its only the mini.
    Its also only a 6k spindle speed on the standard mini, where the VF-1 is 8000. Small machine, think smaller tooling that needs to spin faster...NOPE it don't. So your not making time on roughing and your not making time as spindle rpm is higher...

    Height travel, while fine for quick chip to chip...height is limited. Think going over work stops and vices with tooling with some length, especially drills.
    Standard kurt vise at 4-1/2" tall with standard 3/8" drill sticking out of a holder 4"...you only have 1-1/2" of travel left. Your part better not be much higher then the vise or stuck with only longer projection tool holders.


    If I could fit one machine it would be the VF-1. I'd rather buy stripped down VF-1 then a Mini. You can always run smaller and larger parts in a bigger machine. It has more power, more rpm , more clearance, easier to get in, setup, clean out.

    Then comes the only people here who know what you do, what you want to do is you...
    So take my reasoning from the shop I run and what works for me.
    Last edited by SIM; 02-07-2020 at 06:38 AM.


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