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Thread: One Million And One (3 in 1 machine questions)

  1. #1
    Citizen, Patriot, Ranger bellson's Avatar
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    Default One Million And One (3 in 1 machine questions)

    Hello All,

    I have been looking at 3 in 1 machines for a few years now, but I have never been too impressed with what I have found.

    Harbor Frieght, Smithy, Brands X, Y and Z all seemed to lack something or other.

    I found a reference to these guys on ebay:
    http://shoptask.com/

    I think this just might be the real deal.

    Here is the One Million and First question:

    Anybody know anything first hand about these machines in general, and this company in particular?

    What turned my head around was the machine itself, and the FAQ on the website. The tips section was also very informative and seemed to say that becoming a machinist was not going to be easy. They even have a library of manuals (for purchase) but the descriptions are leading me to believe that they are well worth the money.

    Any info or feedback would be very appreciated.

    Thanks!

    Bells_on

  2. #2
    Administrator pirate56's Avatar
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    The problem with this type of machine is that it does it all, but not very well. you are much better off getting a seperate mill and lathe, even small ones. they will do more than a combination machine.

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    Indian Admin Winn R's Avatar
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    My belief as well.

    I spent time trying to talk myself into it.

    Then bought a Bridgeport and Logan.
    There is no nonsense so errant that it cannot be made the creed of the vast majority by adequate governmental action. -- Bertrand Russell


    "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity." Robert J. Hanlon

  4. #4
    Gunco Regular acmech's Avatar
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    There are several good reasons for having two machines, but the biggest is this for me. On a mill it nice to use a large vice, the larger the better as your table will allow. On my harbor freight mill I have a kurt clone swivel vice that weighs 94 lbs. It never moves from the mill table, I keep it there. You don't have to completlely undo a setup to turn something on the lathe. Having two machines, I just couldn't imagine having to struggle with the drawback of just a 3 in 1 but if your really restricted on space it may be a plus. If you don't think you have enough space though, I'll send you pics of the cramped half a car bay I am working in. I'd rather be tight for space, and have two machines. Its not anymore expensive to have two machines either. My little shop has a Harbor Freight 9x20, and a Harbor Freight round column mill (the 33686). On the HF website put your email in the sales notifications, and they will start to send you coupons like the 20% off of anyone item coupon. When that mill goes on sale for $799, if you have the coupon you could get it for a lot less. If their 12x36 lathe is on sale for 1799 you could get it for 1400. I can't think of any reason to regret having two machines, but guys could go all day giving you reasons for not getting a 3 in 1. The shoptask 3 in 1 is the best machine of its type made if that is the direction you go.

  5. #5
    Gunco Veteran pjm204's Avatar
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    a buddy of mine has a smithy lathe/mill...the lathe works well but the mill doesn't seem as solid as I'd like it to.

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    Gunco Veteran AK Builder FloridaAKM's Avatar
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    Cut to the chase; separate machines means not having to resetup every time you you want to start a new operation. IMHO! The extra money you spend will pay you back in the long run for not having to resetup your lathe...mill... etc.

    "If God had not intended for us to eat animals, how come He made them out of meat?" - Sarah Palin
    New Member of the Busted Box Club

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    Gunco Regular Tailgunner's Avatar
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    IMHO, a mill attachment on a lathe only comes into it's own when you're talking about a CNC lathe like this. Even then it's not a replacement for a dedicated mill.

  8. #8
    Gunco Member killerone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pjm204
    a buddy of mine has a smithy lathe/mill...the lathe works well but the mill doesn't seem as solid as I'd like it to.
    can you please give me a little more of the pitfalls of the smithy I was seriosly thinking of getting one but havent heard from anyone owns one . I would like to know if it sucks or not before spend money on something I'm not going to be happy with.

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