Cost of totally rebuilding a Bridgeport ?
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    Default Cost of totally rebuilding a Bridgeport ?

    Iíve been looking for some time now for a nice Bridgeport that would fit my budget and it has been all junk at premium (imo) prices. How much would the parts be to rebuild a J head and new screws and nuts in the table , knee , and base ? Have All the ways scraped ? Just a ballpark figure so I can make a realistic decision on which way I want to go. How much would you pay for a hulk to start with ?

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    $8000.00 to $12,000. I would say. I used to figure 60 to 80 hours if we painted it plus parts.

    Should ask H&W
    H&W Machine Repair & Rebuilding - Parts and Service for the Metalworking Industry

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinjax View Post
    I’ve been looking for some time now for a nice Bridgeport that would fit my budget and it has been all junk at premium (imo) prices. How much would the parts be to rebuild a J head and new screws and nuts in the table , knee , and base ? Have All the ways scraped ? Just a ballpark figure so I can make a realistic decision on which way I want to go. How much would you pay for a hulk to start with ?
    I wouldn't even start if it was "free" unless it didn't really NEED much, and I was certain of that.

    Unless you do this as a routine biz, one after another, you are bound to end up spending more than an "already decent" BP - or the work-alike equivalent, some other brand-name - even at what at first seems to be a "premium" price.

    Long and short of it is that CNC took over most "for revenue" milling long ago, and all sorts of light/medium all-manual mills got shoved aside first, then out the door, second.

    By now, as with '57 Chevy Bel-Aire's or early Mustangs, nearly any other less-popular make goes cheaper utility-value for money-cost than a BP.

    Some of those "unpopular" models don't even have much wear on them.

    BP does have the advantage that just about ANY part can be had from "somewhere", even if a reproduction.

    If you NEED one to earn a crust, far better to pony-up the price of a known-good one.

    If you just need a "project"? Hard to give advice.

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    That would be them doing all the work. Iím wanting to do all the disassembly , cleaning , painting , and reassembly. What is the cost of parts and having it scraped ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by thermite View Post
    I wouldn't even start if it was "free" unless it didn't really NEED much, and I was certain of that.

    Unless you do this as a routine biz, one after another, you are bound to end up spending more than an "already decent" BP - or the work-alike equivalent, some other brand-name - even at what at first seems to be a "premium" price.

    Long and short of it is that CNC took over most "for revenue" milling long ago, and all sorts of light/medium all-manual mills got shoved aside first, then out the door, second.

    By now, as with '57 Chevy Bel-Aire's or early Mustangs, nearly any other less-popular make goes cheaper utility-value for money-cost than a BP.

    Some of those "unpopular" models don't even have much wear on them.

    BP does have the advantage that just about ANY part can be had from "somewhere", even if a reproduction.

    If you NEED one to earn a crust, far better to pony-up the price of a known-good one.

    If you just need a "project"? Hard to give advice.
    This is a project for me. Iív got a worn Millrite but if Iím going to do all the work to make a mill tight and right I figured Iíd go for the Bridgeport. Parts are plentiful and plenty of knowledge available to be tapped. If parts and scraping will run six or more grand then Iíll keep looking but if I had four grand in parts and scraping and a couple of hundred in a hulk it would be possibly worth it to know what I have is right.

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    It was some years ago, but these people machine-builders did our machine at work, and it was like having a brand new one. Excellent work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinjax View Post
    This is a project for me. I’v got a worn Millrite but if I’m going to do all the work to make a mill tight and right I figured I’d go for the Bridgeport. Parts are plentiful and plenty of knowledge available to be tapped. If parts and scraping will run six or more grand then I’ll keep looking but if I had four grand in parts and scraping and a couple of hundred in a hulk it would be possibly worth it to know what I have is right.
    You can probably put your Millrite into damned good shape for a thousand bucks in parts & speciality/contract labour, plus the same amount of your own scraping and fitting as a BP would need.

    "grass is always greener.." etc. but..

    While not a common as a mill as a BP, they have near-as-dammit identical performance and were built with a good many components that were/are themselves "common-enough" to not be terribly expensive.

    That's about what I'll have in the seriously-weird and totally orphaned "Quartet", counting nearly $300 in a monster Reeves-clone vari-drive belt, another hundred or two in new Gilmer belts, just under a hundred in a new "vertical" pillow-block down in its guts.

    Coupla grand in 40-taper and # 9 B&S tooling and the Eyetalian "modular" vises doesn't count. ANY mill needs toys!



    OTOH, it doesn't need much scraping. Saw more neglect than hard use. Stout ways. Telescoping steel way covers. Some or even MOST of the original flaking still showing, all three axes.

    Still "To Be Determined" what it might take to sort a glitch in the 3/4 HP knee power-traverse gearbox Adam had warned me to be alert for.

    There are DOZENS of "other mills" out there besides BP's.

    I was actually LOOKING for a medium-upper size Van Norman when Adam posted this one @ $500.

    At least it is more INTERESTING than a vanilla vertical!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinjax View Post
    That would be them doing all the work. I’m wanting to do all the disassembly , cleaning , painting , and reassembly. What is the cost of parts and having it scraped ?
    Pilgrim? You are EXPECTED to do all that stuff if the knee and table casting, etc are to be turned over to a contract rebuild or grind shop.

    Otherwise those already-rebuilt prices apply.

    The ones you think are "too high", but are NOT, really, for all the SKILLED labor that has to go into them.

    IOW - your plan won't save much if you only do the unskilled "grunt work" parts. Painting, for example, doesn't even COUNT as far as improving accuracy or usability. Purely "cosmetic".

    Learn to do your own "assessing", make a plan, machine and scrape TO the plan, OTOH?

    NOW you can save some serious money.

    But that applies equally to your Milrite. Or any other machine-tool, so...

    Might be money ahead to buy a video, pay attention to what is involved, weight your own capabilities, then see if taking a course is a wise use of funds.

    Budget of four grand or so? You DO have some options.

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    If I get outfitted to scrape my own I guess I will have to do several machines to make it worth the investment in tools. If I pickup a Bridgeport hulk for close to scrap Iíll put it in the corner and figure it out. Iím going to another auction that has some real junk so who knows. Itís why Iím asking all these questions shotgun instead of well organized. Kind of under time pressure because thereís few opportunities close by so Iím wanting to jump on it. Hopefully someone wants it more than me and saves me from myself.

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    The cost to grind a Bridgeport table is 1100.00 at a good grind shop in Dallas, that's the table alone...

    I have a planer, all the tools for scraping and probably would just buy a rebuilt machine from H&W ....

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    Dave PM'ed me and he said he has the skill level to do the mechanical work and indicators. If he had the table & saddle planned by you Steve what would you charge him approx? Lance B my 3 time student at Keith Ruckers class lives down in FL as does Abomb. They have straight-edges and know how to help him. He asked about coming to a class. I said next month I am having a class at John Saunders in Ohio and John has a big 18 x 36 or something about that size surface grinder. Keith Rucker is going to do another class in southern GA in January and we might have another one in Texas in February (Steve Watkins). Also have one planned in Sept down in Oklahoma. So if he learns to scrape and does most of the work himself he could probably get it done better then new for under $5000.00 or less for grinding, training and parts
    Last edited by Richard King; 07-14-2018 at 06:37 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard King View Post
    $8000.00 to $12,000.
    Yes I'd have to go with these numbers if you want to go full all like new and it may be a bit short in dollars.
    People who needed like new machines tossed old to scrap dealers because of this cost. I've sent many.
    But most do not need a full "like new" machine.
    Bob

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    If you are looking to spend the $ discussed in this thread, and want to make a road trip or pay freight, Action Machinery in Pa has a brand new Acer E-Mill, itís old stock(2013) .
    Not much bad written about the Acers from folks that have them, and the variable frequency drive head is awesome.
    Itís still on a pallet and has a warranty. They have it listed for $8500(which is MSRP for a new one) , but you could negotiate a significant discount.
    I had a $4k deposit on it and went to pick it up, but ended up buying a Acer CNC conversion for not much more money( than the 2013 model)that they had sitting next to it. I love it.
    Feel free to PM for details
    Keith




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

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    Quote Originally Posted by ripperj View Post
    If you are looking to spend the $ discussed in this thread, and want to make a road trip or pay freight, Action Machinery in Pa has a brand new Acer E-Mill, it’s old stock(2013) .
    Not much bad written about the Acers from folks that have them, and the variable frequency drive head is awesome.
    It’s still on a pallet and has a warranty. They have it listed for $8500(which is MSRP for a new one) , but you could negotiate a significant discount.
    I had a $4k deposit on it and went to pick it up, but ended up buying a Acer CNC conversion for not much more money( than the 2013 model)that they had sitting next to it. I love it.
    Feel free to PM for details
    Keith
    ... or swap two letters and ask Abom79 about his "Acra" vertical mill.

    Nice-looking machine - I've seen it. He likes it and has so stated "right here on PM" arredy.

    Might even come out of the same Taiwanese factory as the Acer?

    And where were the last and latest of BP's being made?

    Lots of decent "all manual" verticals around that won't need much "rebuild" for long, long, years in "hobby" use.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ripperj View Post
    If you are looking to spend the $ discussed in this thread, and want to make a road trip or pay freight, Action Machinery in Pa has a brand new Acer E-Mill, it’s old stock(2013) .
    Not much bad written about the Acers from folks that have them, and the variable frequency drive head is awesome.
    It’s still on a pallet and has a warranty. They have it listed for $8500(which is MSRP for a new one) , but you could negotiate a significant discount.
    I had a $4k deposit on it and went to pick it up, but ended up buying a Acer CNC conversion for not much more money( than the 2013 model)that they had sitting next to it. I love it.
    Feel free to PM for details
    Keith




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    I have a rebuilder friend Craig Laurich up here in MN who also sells Acer Mills as he says you can buy a better quality machine from Acer for $8500.00. I tried to hook him up with a company in Ohio and he said he can't sell outside his territory. So if you have the money, check online for a Acer distrib in FL.

    I also had another Idea if you can wait until January - March and have a spare bedroom. LOL when it's 40 below wind chill up here in MN that is. ;-)

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    My first Bridgeport was a 32" table 9" knee step pulley that was beat. I loved it. I would love to have another like it because you can really feel what you are doing, and can actually stand in front of the machine rather than walking over to turn a handle on a 48 inch table. It really takes up so little floor space....

    That said, unless I had all the time and money in the world, would never buy one to fix.

    Get a late [but no singapore heads] chrome/bijur machine with low backlash and a quiet head and just use it.

    Scraping machines is a labor of love and something to do because you love it, not because it makes some kind of economic sense. Or to restore a machine that is just irreplaceable.

    I say it about lathes all the time, there are plenty of lathes without grooves in the bed, let the dead ones go as moorings, at free they are overpriced. If you look for as long as it would take to restore a beat one, you will find a good one for reasonable money

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    Thanks all for the advice. Iím going to hold off for now and shoot for the Georgia class to learn. Iíll collect a straight edge and surface plate in the meantime. I only have $300 in my old Millrite and Iím going to scrape it back into shape for my first rebuild. The Millrite is heavily worn but works well. If Iím successful in scraping everything back to better than new then Iíll spend the money for new screws and nuts. If the project goes off the rails Iím not out thousands just hundreds and hurt feelers. If I hate scraping I can sell off the the tools if Iíve bought them right for as much or more than Iíve paid. I think Iíve convinced myself to put down the stupid and crazy pills !

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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinjax View Post
    Thanks all for the advice. I’m going to hold off for now and shoot for the Georgia class to learn. I’ll collect a straight edge and surface plate in the meantime. I only have $300 in my old Millrite and I’m going to scrape it back into shape for my first rebuild. The Millrite is heavily worn but works well. If I’m successful in scraping everything back to better than new then I’ll spend the money for new screws and nuts. If the project goes off the rails I’m not out thousands just hundreds and hurt feelers. If I hate scraping I can sell off the the tools if I’ve bought them right for as much or more than I’ve paid. I think I’ve convinced myself to put down the stupid and crazy pills !
    Eh, well... not just YET!

    If you want to rebuild a DECKEL mill, or mayhap an Abene or such, you'd at least have something a tad more unusual and perhaps even "prestigeous" at the end.

    Even so, don't count on a manual one bringing all that great a sell-price when time comes to shed it.

    By this late stage, what with right-decent and affordable Taiwanese mills, rebuilding a BP "fully", is like trying to make stale white-bread fresh again or recap basic tires in common sizes.

    Too common. Too easily substituted for at modest costs to justify any really long-running and intense effort, "free labour" or no.

    Scraping as a general skill, OTOH? That will always find handy and valuable use - even if only every once-in-a-while.

    Doesn't HAVE to be a "full" rebuild on a machine at all. It can be as simple as turning a worn vise into a nicely true and tight one again.

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    Thanks for all the nice words guys...

    I PMed Dave but figured I would also put the info out here. We do way work for about $1,500-$1,800 per axis if the machine is already disassembled. Obviously itll cost more if we do the tear down.

    We sell rebuilt Bridgeports for $8,500 (manual, but if you want any of the goodies we can hook it up for extra, obviously).

    Jon
    H&W Machine Repair


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