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Anonymous Poster

What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/13/2007 5:51 AM

Which company is the best, the price, and location?

I want a CNC about with table of works about x,y,z (50 cm 50 cm and 5-cm).

Thank you.

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#1

Re: I Want To Buy CNC Machine, I Need Your Experience Or Your Opinion!

12/13/2007 8:45 AM

There are many companies that make CNC tables, Guest. Are there specific companies whose products you are considering? And what is the application you have in mind?

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#2

Re: I Want To Buy CNC Machine, I Need Your Experience Or Your Opinion!

12/13/2007 9:23 AM

Try Citizen Cincom M16 or L16 CNC's; I validated a few and they are outstanding.

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#3

Re: I want to buy CNC machine, I need your experience or your opinion!

12/13/2007 9:38 AM

You need to provide more information that that to elicit opinions of others within CR4.

  1. Material(s)
  2. Number of Tools Required
  3. What about Changeovers
  4. Extremes of holes to be drilled/reamed/threaded
  5. Extremes of what needs to be milled
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#4

Re: I Want To Buy CNC Machine, I Need Your Experience Or Your Opinion!

12/13/2007 3:51 PM

Knee jerk response: Mazak Vertical Mill Center.

I can offer a laundry list of reasons that I so strongly support the Mazak product line. But since the question is sooooooooo lame I'll leave it at that.

cr3

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#5
In reply to #4

Re: I Want To Buy CNC Machine, I Need Your Experience Or Your Opinion!

12/13/2007 4:20 PM

Also, depending on your needs, there are some really good manual retrofit packages available.

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#6

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/13/2007 11:17 PM

What ever Brand or Model you decide on, consider this . If it appreciates BUY IT, if it depreciates, finance it.

Please visit my web site: www.aelbf.com or email me at vgreen@aelbf.com for more details on how to best expence your next purchase.

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#7

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 2:13 AM

I will add to the other's comments this question. Where are you located? If you can't get parts and service as well as training, you are lost. Tell us what is available in your area, as well as what you want to machine, and how many. What is your level of experience? How do you plan to program it? If you are only going to run a couple of different jobs, a programming system is not so important, you can source out your programs. If you are going to be a job shop running many different parts, you had best invest in a good programming software along with your machining center.

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 7:49 AM

Much good advice already given.

The critical question is what will the parts that you plan on making require?

if your parts will be over 30mm, a perfect 25mm machine will be of no use.

If you are making mostly lathe type parts, The best VMC in the world will not be much help.

If your parts complexity is high then you will need a machine with more axes than 'the average bear."

If your work materials are difficult to cut, then rigidity and horsepower become more important;

If precision is the most critical, then thermal stability becomes a deciding factor.

Mazak, Star, Citizen,Tsugami, Index, Tornos, Hardinge, Haas,DMG come easily to mind. There are others as well,But there's no such thing as the perfect cnc ... just like there isn't a perfect car...until you fully describe your requirements.

milo

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#10
In reply to #8

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 10:03 AM

You can add FADAL and Hardinge/Bridgeport and ROBO Drill to that list.

Someone asks this question at least once a month and they rarely give enough information for us to answer effectively. It is like asking how big to build a house. Well, it depends on many factors. There are lots of machine tool manufacturers, and if they each didn't fill a need, they would go out of business.

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#12
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Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 12:26 PM

I knew you would chime in sooner or later . I agree with this 100%. And that is why I recommend the Mazak product line. They have service everywhere. They are reliable. A monkey can program using the extremely simple on board software. And they can be purchased at a reasonable price.

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#9

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 9:46 AM

Any machinist worth his salt will say Bridgeport. They're so much an industry standard, that any vertical milling machines regardless of manufacturer is commonly referred to as a bridgeport. They have a line of cnc machines, even 5-axis. I believe that some of the the older, non cnc models can be retrofitted for cnc work, and if you're working in a small shop that might be a more cost effective route for you. I started out running a series I machine, with NC feedback, when i was 13 years old in the family machine shop. But as someone stated before, knowing things like how often you need to change your tooling, how many parts of any one type you plan on making, etc should weigh in on your decision. Being practical to your application is key. If you just want a machine in your basement or garage for tinkering, clearly you dont need a 5 axis 20 tool head with laser alignment and automatic tool wear compensation.

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 10:12 AM

Well I guess I'm not worth much salt...

I trained on a manual bridgeport. in 1982. I liked it, did my best work on it, and even bruised my thumbs trying to change the flippin belt on top one too many times.

I see many bridgeports- manual, cnc, cnc readout, in Tool rooms/maintenance shops.

that said, I Have never seen a bridgeport on a production floor making production parts.

30+ years and probably 500+ shops toured in North America, Ireland, China, France and Switzerland.

MUst be on a low sodium diet.

milo

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#13
In reply to #11

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 12:54 PM

I am with you on that one Milo. I have only seen bridgeports in the Tool Rooms. In my short caerer and all the production sites I have visited and worked in across the USA, Europe and India, I have not seen a Bridgeport in a production setting. Bridgeport has also NEVER come up as a desired option for a new maching center in a production area. And YES, we included experienced Machinists, Tool & Die Makers, and other Engineers on those decisions.

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#15
In reply to #11

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 5:05 PM

Bridgeport was recently bought out by Hardinge. This is a combination of two great companies. Their mill line are all under the Bridgeport name. I recently visited their factory in Elmira New York and was very impressed. I have also toured both the FADAL and HAss factories. Hardinge has added their spindle technology and other great ideas to the Bridgeport Mill line. Since I am in the market for another machining center I have been comparing these machines ver closely. The Mazak sales rep visited my shop and has been doing a great job of follow up with me, but I finally had to tell him that feature for feature and dollar for dollar his machine couldn't compare with the Hardinge Bridgeport. I still consider Mazak to be a great machine and for world wide service they may very well be the best. I live fairly close to Elmira so if I get a Bridgeport I will be getting factory direct service.

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#21
In reply to #11

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/17/2007 3:53 PM

We use Bridgeport's for production parts all the time, where you been?

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/17/2007 3:54 PM

That's one.

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#23
In reply to #21

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/17/2007 4:44 PM

"Where you been?"

"30+ years and probably 500+ shops toured in North America, Ireland, China, France and Switzerland. "

Almost every recognizable automotive, off road, agricultural, heavy truck supplier any tier, and general manufacturer (Kodak, GE, Black and Decker, Troybilt, Hoover, Insinkerator, Whirlpool, and hundreds of NAICS 3327 shops. Plus a few Japanese transplants and their Kairetsu partners.

milo

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#24
In reply to #23

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/17/2007 5:52 PM

I guess that is what this forum is for, to share our experiences. I have never been in a shop that didn't use Bridgeport knee mills or their copies to do blanking or secondary operations. I have 2 in my own shop that I use for those purposes, although my production runs are rarely over 1000 pcs. I did however in the early 1980's use Bridgeport, Sharp, and Lagun retrofits to run a 40,000 pc. production job that lasted several months. Each part had over 60 drilled and tapped holes. With 3 machines we drilled and tapped over 90,000 holes a week.

While you may not have seen many Bridgports in serious production applications in the past, that is changing. The new Hardinge Bridgeport vertical machining centers are some of the best designed machines I have seen. Hardinge/Bridgeport had a great showing at the 2006IMTS, they sold over 300 machines. I am sure they were not all lathes.

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/17/2007 10:44 PM

I do hope you are right. I was raised on the knee of the Bridgeport.

They were/are the standard in that arena. As for the transition to CNC, I wish them the best, but they are not there yet as some seem to want to suggest.

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#26
In reply to #25

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/18/2007 1:57 AM

"I was raisedon the knee of the Bridgeport"

As was I. Which was why I was quite saddened when I heard that Bridgeport was closing. It was also pretty close there for a while at Hardinge during the 2001 industry slump. However the joining of the two was a great thing. Bridgeport Connecticut is not that far from Elmira New York and a lot of the personnel went along, a bunch of very talented people.

It is not really a matter of Bridgeport making a transition to CNC. It is a matter of the Bridgeport people getting together with Hardinge who have been building CNC for a long time. Some of their mills have been partially made in Taiwan, however more and more of that production has been coming back to the US. Because I am personally shopping for a new machine, and because my work requires that the machine I purchase have the ability to do HSM and not just talk about it, I have been looking very closely at these machines. There are very specific issues involving the castings, the ways, the ballscrews and how they are mounted, thermal expansion compensation, spindle design, the raising and lowering of the head, the control's ability to handle the data required for HSM, axis travel, user frendliness, and ergonomics that must be considered in the choice of a machine. I am very impressed by the way that Hardinge/Bridgeport has handled each of them.

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#27
In reply to #21

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/18/2007 7:58 AM

I've been in countless hydraulic valve, pump & motor, tier 1 automotive supply companies, & medical industry plants. And I will reiterate that I have seen Bridgeport's in the tool room/maintenance, not in production. I am not knocking the Bridgeport's, I'm just stating what I have observed.

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#14
In reply to #9

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 1:16 PM

Yeah I gotta get on this one too.

Bridgeport is not a name that comes up for me either. Unless I am employing the name as a reference to mean a manual vertical mill. I have seen these machines in production settings. Hell, I've run production work on a manual BP vert; and Cadillac's and others. The retrofit package I mentioned earlier worked like a champ on the ol' BP at Advance Plastic Fabricators back in the early '90s. I was taught how to set up and run on a BP. We had one for rework, single ops, and jc (just 'coz) at every shop Ive ever worked. Shoot, I don't think you can call a shop a shop without an old American made vertical mill.

Having said all that. You notice that since my reference to 1990, BP has not come up. Nor has it come up in any reference to modern CNC.

I am just gonna have to disagree on the Bridgeport.

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#17
In reply to #14

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/15/2007 1:33 AM

Try www.hardinge.com. Bridgeport is much more than it used to be. The casting technology and the sensors to monitor the casting temperature, and automatic adjustment to compensate for thermal expansion added to Hardinge's fantastic (also secret) spindle technology make these machines among the most advanced in the industry. You can choose several different controls. I would choose the Heidenhein control for it's ability to handle 5 axis and to process data fast enough for today's high speed machining techniques.

If you want to know more about HSM go to www.creat.com and read the article "milling in the hot zone" by Todd Shuet.

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#16

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/14/2007 9:14 PM

Last one I saw was in my father's machine shop and it was either a Cinncinati or a Clausing, I think. Been too many years.

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#18

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/15/2007 10:47 AM

In all my years in industry, about 28, I have only seen US made machinery in shop settings, not production. From about 1983 to 2002 the bulk of "inline" precision machinery has come from Europe or Japan! Quality priciples had been introduced by the Japanese...at least that's what I've been taught at all the major US pharmaceuticals and eletronics companies...

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#28
In reply to #18

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/18/2007 12:04 PM

What you have observed may be mostly true in the area of small parts, but when you get into the big stuff you see more American made machines. Visit some of the big Southern California aircraft companies making parts for Boeing, Airbus, Mc Donnell Douglas, and Lockheed, and you will see Giddings and Lewis machines, Cinncinatti Milacron, and in the smaller shops doing Aerospace work you will even see a lot of FADAL's and Haas's. Haas while considered a low end machine and not my favorite at that, is still out selling every machine tool company in the world. They are not all being used for tooling.

While we are all giving our qualifications here I will chime in as well. I've been in manufacturing for over 34 years. It is not likely that you can name an American aerospace company whose drawings have not passed across my workbench. My opinions on machines is not based on anything I have heard. I have personally programmed set up and operated: Mori Seiki, Mitssui Seiki, Maatsura, Mighty Viper, Shizooka, Kasuga, Cinncinatti, Haas, Fanuc Robodrill, and Fadal. As I type this, my 14 year old Fadal VMC40 is out there cranking out steel parts and holding +.001/-.000 on a milling operation. I regularly hold .0003 while interpolating small holes .5 to 3". Anyone who tells you that these are just throw away machines is just feeding you a bunch of marketiing baloney.

There are high volume production, short run production, prototyping, and tooliing. No matter which one you are doing, set up time is very important. I can get a job set up and running on a FADAL faster than on any Japanese machine I have ever set up, and I have set up a lot of them.

I'm not looking to offend anybody, but I will cilmb up on my soapbox pretty quick when it comes to defending American craftsmanship.

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#30
In reply to #28

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

01/02/2008 12:48 PM

Read Carefully; I mentioned PHARMACEUTICALS/MED DEVICES and ELECTRONICS, no mention of aerospace or weaponolgy where the use of American Made machinery is obvious!

BTW, no offense intended, none taken..

€:Ő...have a nice day!

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#31
In reply to #30

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

01/02/2008 3:06 PM

Thanks Ronald,

I don't think of this as an argument either, but an opportunity to share opinions based on our various experiences. What is obvious to you, me, and several other commentators may not be obvious to all. That is what makes it hard to answer such a broad question as the original question, and then we all may have different definitions of what constitutes production. To some anything less than 100k pcs is not production. To to others anything over 10 pcs is production.

When you say Bridgeport, most people envision one of 2 models of manually operated kneemills that may or may not have been retrofitted for CNC. Only a few years ago this was an accurate paradigm. Today it is not. It was only my intention to share the information with whoever may be interested that the Hardinge/Bridgeports being produced now are at the leading edge of machining center technology and are a worthy consideration to anyone who is shopping.

It is really interesting to me that machining technology has nearly been turned upside down in the last few years, and everybody has a different idea on how to use it. My brotherinlaw has a shop that does a lot of medical devices. In keeping with your observation he uses Japenese mills, in particular, Tsugami horizontal multipallet machines. They often run all night unattended. That shop quotes nothing less than 50-100pcs. In my shop where the production seldom exceeds 1000pcs. those machines would be way too cumbersome. I have to be able to change setups quickly (usually in less than an hour) to make parts that would not fit in the Tsugami's work envelope.

Just for the record, I am not anti-Japanese machinery. They make a lot of really great stuff which I would recomend depending upon the application. Again, it all boils down to what you want to make and how many.

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#32
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Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

01/03/2008 6:59 AM

I did not create the original post, but I have greatly appreciated all the discussion. It has opened my eyes to a few different companies that I have never considered. As I have previously stated, never considering Bridgeport for production, I will now add them to my evaluation list for the next time I may need to purchase another CNC center.

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#19

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/15/2007 5:54 PM

What if it's a punch press he's after . I'd say Wieddemann .

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#20
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Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/15/2007 10:03 PM

That prompted me to re-read the original. I just caught the Z axis travel of 5cm! Thats less than 2 inches! Of course the < - > key is right next to the < 0 > key.....so maybe?

Man I hope that was a typo. After all my years in QC! oooh that's embarassing !

cr3

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#29

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

01/01/2008 2:39 PM

My first question is are you looking for a CNC hobby class or CNC production class machine?

From the looks of it I would say hobby class. That would point you in a very different direction then most of the posts so far.

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#33

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

06/10/2008 7:43 PM

We are a supplier. Please contactg with us. Henryzhang1@hotmail.com

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#34

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

08/10/2009 9:04 PM

Getting back to the discussion at hand, the gentleman asked for information regarding the best cnc for 50cm x and y and 5 cm in z though it may be 50 cm in all 3 axes.

Most of these guys are puffing their tail feathers like peacocks trying to attract a mate with their knowledge and experience.

Ultimately, let us know what material you will primarily want to machine, what accuracies you want to hold, what speeds you want to machines, etc.

Write down all these characteristics and you might even want to create a matrix in excel with weights added to each catagory to help you determine what is more important. I would even go so far as to include a range because if you limit yourself to just the machines that have work envelope you prescribe, you may actually eliminate a better machine for you.

If you're not trying to get into production, stay away from high-speed machines, high automated tool change capacities, automated setups similar to the Toyoda 550, Hypermachs, etc., the added cost won't be justified.

As for the discussion on Bridgeports, it's kind of nullified. Everybody's reading too much into each other's comments. Bridgeport mills are commonly used in toolrooms, knee milling, manual milling, semi-cnc, drilling holes, etc, but in the past 20 years they have not been a staple in production manufacturing across the board. They may be improving but no one has countered that point.

As for me, I teach CNC Programming in CATIA V5 and have been a programmer for 10 years. I'm not as much of a veteran as some of you, but I also still have a full head of natural color hair. I primarily work in and with the aerospace industry and the majority of production cnc equipment I see are Cincinatti, Fadal, Haas, Toyoda, Okuma, SNK, Mori-Seiki, Tree, DMF, Makino, etc.

Good luck in your search. Oh and I have a Bridgeport Series I CNC (18in x 12in x 6in). And I love it.

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#35
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Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

08/11/2009 3:22 PM

You seem to be puffing your own tail feathers a bit with your comments about your experience. You mention the machines that you see. Do you actually set them up and run them as well as program them? I do not care to be insulted nor do I wish to insult anyone else, but let's face it, a lot of people post comments on subjects that they know little or nothing about. Therefore it is quite appropriate to qualify yourself before making a comment, and that applies to both of us.

If anything, I applaud you for your accomplishments. This industry certainly needs more young guys like you who are actually willing to learn something. The point is that we all see the industry from a different paradigm. You are correct when you suggest that a person has many factors to consider before purchasing a machine and should chart them in order to make a good decision. There are factors besides performance to consider also such as reigonal service availability, user friendliness, price, longevity, and versatility. They should also consider the opinions of those with experinece at using the machines. The more opinions the more data, the better the decisions.

Seven years ago I moved from California to Pennsylvania. The reigonal preferences are very different. In SoCAL you have the factories for Haas and Fadal so those machines are even more popular there than elsewhere. In the Mid Atlantic reigon I am seeing a lot of Robo Drill, Brother, and Hardinge/Bridgeport machines.

Bridgeport knee mills, tracers, and CNC knee mills have been around for so long that some people have a hard time seeing them as something else. As for me, I put my money where my mouth is and bought a Hardinge/Bridgeport XV 710. See photo above taken in my shop. This machine has a Fanuc Oi control, 12k spindle, and 1200ipm rapid. I cut titanium, SST, CRS, aluminum, and composites with it. It holds great tolerences and gives great finishes. It is however close to the bottom of the line for it's type and is not fully made in the US. There are at least two higher levels of Bridgeport that are made in the US at the Elmira Ny factory. They are high speed machines and are very nice. I visited a shop yesterday that has three of them. I am not saying that this is the end all and be all of machines, but it is certainly worth considering, it is gaining in popularity, and it is obviously not a knee mill.

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#36

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

11/20/2009 4:39 AM

Contact me donwatkins@tongtai.com.tw

We have been manufacturing CNC machines for 40 years and can offer you the best terms of payment that you will find. I guarantee.

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Anonymous Poster
#37

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

09/29/2010 11:39 PM

CNC refers to the computer controls of a machine. With the help of a program code, it will be easier to replicate same parts. It is a great innovation in the field of manufacturing that makes mass production more efficient and practical. That is why companies, large or small, must exert effort to find a CNC machines that will best suit their needs.

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Anonymous Poster
#38

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

11/03/2010 12:27 PM

CNC CNC Machines provides complete information about types of cnc machines, cnc manufacturers, cnc marketplace, cnc automatic and cnc lathe related products for industries cnc machines.

magento commerce

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#41
In reply to #38

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

03/12/2014 3:45 PM

Our shop has a HAAS - Vert. Mill. For the price, the horse power (20 to 30), spline speed (7,500 to 10,000 rpm), probe, table speed, SDT: G-code, easy to transfer programs is a good investment. Also, its important what your operator or operators has exiting experience using this equipment.

Hope this helps.

Jack (Mechanical Engineer)

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#39

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/03/2010 12:52 PM

HASAS makes great cnc machines

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#40

Re: What's the Best CNC Machine?

12/09/2012 1:40 PM

Check out Majestic Machinery. They make super reliable machines at pretty incredible prices. Here is a link: http://majesticmachinery.com/

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