Before Buying Your First Milling Machine

Category: milling machine

If you want metal parts that conform to moderately tight tolerances, your best bet is a milling machine, as they are practical and are very essential to manufacturing.

Although, it is, any time, difficult knowing where to begin, especially for those who do this as a hobby, and have no solid machining experience. You begin to ask yourself questions like, should I buy a new one or a used one?

What in heaven’s name is a 3-phase power, and where does one get that? What kind of milling machine should I get? These questions can leave you overwhelmed, but hey, you’re here, and we will help you sort those out.

Firstly, what kind of milling machine do you need?

We have two kinds of modern milling machines, the horizontal and vertical machines. These two determine whether the machine’s spindle axis runs up and down, or moves from side to side.

Both machine types have something we call columns, heads, and tables, that can tilt or swivel, and what this means is that both kinds of machines can be used for a lot of the same tasks.

Although, there are certain jobs that will be easier on one machine than on the other.

There is a difference between these two machines, and the difference between these two machines can be seen in practice and is more seen than just the way in which they are oriented. A horizontal machine’s spindle is mounted parallel to the plane of the table, while the vertical machine has the table mounted perpendicular to the zero-tilt position of the spindle.

The horizontal milling machine’s strength is the over arm, which limits the rotating arbor on two sides. This makes the machine rigid.

Its strength is so high that it allows multiple cutters to be stacked on the arbor in order to cut. The disadvantage is, of course, that it is tough to make parts that have cuts in all axes.

And this is where the vertical machine prospers because it is more versatile. Although, depending on the part geometry, the vertical machine is sometimes a lot more time-consuming than a horizontal mill.

And about the 3-phase power?

It is most probable that you do not have a 3-phase power at home. But if you have an industrial space, you may have a 3-phase power available.

Many industrial-grade tools have 3-phase motors that cannot be run on standard household single-phase power on their own.

What does this mean? This means that most people will be limited to mills with single-phase motors. Although, this often makes it very possible to find 3-phase machinery for very cheap than you’ll find a single-phase machinery.

With milling machines as with many other things, it is recommended that you do a lot more research before making any decisions.

About the Author Aaron

Hi, I'm Aaron Cardwell. I did not think of myself as an auto enthusiast until I bought my first car and discover how much fun driving is. Also, using vehicles or any means of transportation is a way of life. I know how greatly it impacts our daily lives.

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