I spent a very long time trying to decide what to replace the RF40 with. Although I wasn't horribly unhappy with it, I found it pretty much useless for milling steel so I wanted something a bit more rigid. I looked at a few square column mill/drills - the one from Grizzly had horrible fit and finish and it felt like the gibs had the same slop as the RF40. The one from WTTool was very nice with excellent fit and finish and I came very close to buying it.
However, after further deliberation, despite the difficulty of getting it into my basement, I decided that since the cost of CNC conversion was very similar for a mill/drill as for a full-size mill, if I was going to spend the money, time and effort, I might as well start off with as good a platform as I could. I looked at at least a half dozen Bridgeport and Bridgeport clones in the local area without finding any that were priced right for the condition. Finally I found a Comet 10x50 which was in Toronto, Canada. From the pictures I got it was in excellent condition, and the seller worked with me on the shipping...
|My first impression was, "Holy shit, it is huge!" It came on thick pallet that was blocked higher so it was a good 1-2' taller than I am.|
|The speed range is much better than the RF40. And since I'll be using an A/C Inverter to convert single phase to three phase, I should be able to get even greater speed range.||The only real problem with the mill as it arrived was it was wired for 575v! I got the motor re-wound locally to 220v and the seller paid for half of the cost which wasn't so bad.|
|Square ways on the X and Y, dovetail on the column.|
|The knee is much taller and longer than a standard Bridgeport which gives longer Y travel.||Meehanite casting on the column, which theoretically should be better than regular although I doubt I'll ever notice the difference.|
|I'm sure that Mighty Comet sounds really great in Taiwan..|
|The table is huge! Well. Everything is huge!|
Also, see: Comet Moving, Assembly and Comet CNC Conversion
Return to the Virtual Smidgescape Return to the 928 Pages Return to the Machine Shop