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Thread: I can only get one..

  1. #26
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMasher View Post
    When you say "inexpensive", how inexpensive are we talking? The only part I really dread (other than using a hack saw or cut off wheels to cut everything) is there is a need to create a 90 degree curve for a bolt to ride in for the tilting mechanism. In Jeremy's build video, he drills holes all along the curve then uses a file to file it out. Could I do that? Yeah, and I could cut the entire thing with cut off wheels on an angle grinder...I just don't want to, which is what it all really boils down to.
    My last order was in March of this year. I just looked at my invoice and the cost was $1.50 per pound cut to size. The order was for about 300 lbs of 1/4 plate, cut to 75 individual pieces. I supplied the dwg files. Overall my order was around a $1000 so I'm not sure if there was a discount or not. This was at DenCol in Denver.

    I've seen numerous ads on Craigslist and Facebook marketplace offering plasma table cutting services. I do have a plasma but could never come close to the accuracy of the laser cut parts. They are just dead on.

  2. #27
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMasher View Post
    that little portable bandsaw on the vertical mount table is appealing as well, but then I have to stand there and cut each piece start to finish where the HF 4x6 bandsaw will cut unattended, but at the loss of ability to cut the curves (back to the grinder in that case). Each option has advantages and disadvantages, both in accuracy, time, and versatility. I'm just weighing them to decide what is the best option for the grinder build and then afterward for other stuff.
    actually ya can use a harbor freight in exactly the same way as the portaband saws I do it all the time and I have both available, as far as cutting curves ya can't cut any tighter with the portaband than ya can the 4x6 in its vertical position, the blade for metal cutting saws are wider than those for wood and none of em are really great for cutting curves, do a google search for

    4x6 metal cutting bandsaw

    and ya'll find a ton of tables and so on people build for em to use in the vertical mode and still have the ability to go horizontal.. there is a pin on the newer ones to lock em in the vertical position just cause its so popular...

    the reason I asked the guy above "really" regarding him saying the HF 4x6 is notorious for blades jumping off is because if ya do a search ya will find thats not correct what they are most notorious for is the versatility... I have several portabands most are Milwaukee 1 is dewalt they are onea my favorite cutters especially if I'm cutting miters on the horizontal saw cause if its off just a hair its fast to just slip the porta band in there and trim a blade width off without straightening the joint etc... but as far as Bandsaws go.. for your application ya will probably do better with a 4x6 if ya can only get 1... orr check craigslist and offerup look for a good deal on a 4x6 like the one I picked up for $30 it just needed a lil cleaning I originally grabbed it as a parts doner for my old 1987 one but soon realized it could run and it has ever since... then buy ya onea the NEW Milwaukee portabands (I've got em back to the 6 amp American made 6030 up to a brand spankin new cordless one it or its corded cousin are the best Milwaukee has ever made! I have both versions) tip the brand new Milwaukee portabands pop up on offerup all the time for around $150 in unopened cases etc... then ya will have both options available with a bunch of your budget left over to go towards a china plasma cutter...

    EDIT; BTW as far as how fast the 4x6s cut is totally dependent on your blade choice... cheap blades are unbearably slow a good blade pretty fast I had a new harbor freight bi-metal blade someone gave me so just for chuckles I put it on the $30 saw and started both saws (the 1987 saw had an old blade that had probably 300-350 cuts through 2x2x1/4 and 2x2x 1/8 on it) set at same speed cutting the exact same 2x2x1/8" square tube.. the Olsen blade ($26 on Amazon if ya only buy 1 I buy em 5 at a time) was done while the HF blade was only 3/8" through its piece... Sterrette blades for me cut a lil faster than the Olsens but not enough to justify the extra $10 your blade choice will also determine how straight your saw cuts... and your blade setup will determine how long your blades last
    Last edited by monsoon-mech; 11-11-2019 at 10:42 PM.

  3. #28
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Little late to the party, but if your still looking at plasma cutters buy the best. I've run a Biltek for awhile now, will never do it again. Saving money for a Hypertherm, or maybe a Hobart.
    Last edited by Cadfael; 11-12-2019 at 11:16 PM.

  4. #29
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    Re: I can only get one..

    I just checked the price of a Hypertherm Powermax 30 here in Spain (smallest one, cuts 1/4" so is not that big of a machine) and it is arround 1850€.... that's a chunk of change for a hobbie user like me. I have other tools in the list before getting a plasma... one day... ONE DAY!!!

    Mikel

  5. #30
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    Re: I can only get one..

    If you really want a plasma to do cutting for you get one rated well above what your thickest piece will be otherwise you will always be fighting to make it work and bevels won't work at all.

  6. #31
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    Re: I can only get one..

    A plasma is on my "some day" list as well. I currently have O/A, numerous grinders from Dremel 1/2" to DeWalt 9", a 14" chopsaw, a powered 12" hacksaw and a 5x7 bandsaw I bought used. I would suggest a better quality (at least more expensive Chinesium) than HF and go used if the budget is tight. Most of my cutting is done on the bandsaw and cutoff discs on a 4 1/2" grinder. I disagree that the chopsaw is faster... the thicker the metal the more prone they are to glazing and slowing down. Assuming you already have at least one grinder, I'd look for a decent used bandsaw... the bigger the better.
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  7. #32
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    Re: I can only get one..

    I use my chopsaw(non-abrasive) when I'm in a hurry especially if there are lots of cuts it is tremendously faster than a band or cutoff wheels and I can handle the fresh cuts on thick stuff without burning through thin gloves

  8. #33
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Thanks guys, so far it seems a band saw leads the pack. I'm inclined, at this point, to agree. I am still on the fence, though, concerning a plasma, only because of the speed and many other situations and uses, it's just very hard to ignore the versatility factor in that sense.

    If I ultimately decide to go with a plasma cutter, it will not be a Hypertherm (as much as I'd love one), it's just simply too expensive. I can't justify the cost for hobbyist use. The particular Chinesium one I've put on my list is one from LOTOS. Either the LPT5000D or the LPT5500D. The LOTOS cutters seem to have a decent following and decent performance for the price. They've been around for quite a while from my understanding and consumables are readily available. I understand that it's more difficult to get an exact to dimension cut with plasma, but I'm mainly attracted to the speed of the cutting (and ability to do curves, etc). I don't mind having to take a grinder to the edge of a cut to get final dimension, it's just the sheer time of cutting 3/8 (or thicker) material that turns me off.

    Still, a band saw is cheaper and avoids the issue of manually cutting the material or using cut off wheels, even if it is relatively slow I've more or less ruled out the cold saw due to initial price and then blade replacement costs. Still plenty of time to make my final decision.
    Last edited by MetalMasher; 11-13-2019 at 08:38 PM.

  9. #34
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by ronsii View Post
    I use my chopsaw(non-abrasive) when I'm in a hurry especially if there are lots of cuts it is tremendously faster than a band or cutoff wheels and I can handle the fresh cuts on thick stuff without burning through thin gloves
    So does yours use the diamond coated disc? Mine is a 14" abrasive disc and I haven't been overly impressed with it.
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  10. #35
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    Re: I can only get one..

    No, just the regular cermet teeth brazed on, basically the same as my little milwaukee metal cutting circular saw but 14inch instead of 5-3/8 blade.

  11. #36
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    I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMasher View Post
    Still plenty of time to make my final decision.
    Donít beat yourself up over your decision. Whatever you decide on will work but not be ideal for every scenario you encounter.

    I think you already know you will be adding other cutting options in the future.
    Last edited by Lis2323; 11-13-2019 at 10:26 PM.
    :

  12. #37
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    Donít beat yourself up over your decision. Whatever you decide on will be work but not be ideal for every scenario you encounter.

    I think you already know you will be adding other cutting options in the future.
    Yes you will definitely be adding others. Buy what you can afford NOW ! Many of us have a variety of goodies. We didn't buy them all at once either. Buy as you need and not just because you want. This is the saying ,
    Separate your wants from your needs.


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  13. #38
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    Don’t beat yourself up over your decision. Whatever you decide on will be work but not be ideal for every scenario you encounter.

    I think you already know you will be adding other cutting options in the future.
    This is true and a good point. I'm not really beating myself up, I typically do a lot of research and spend time mulling things like this over. I'm sure I'll revisit it often between now and time to make the purchase. Who knows, things change, come next spring I might be in the position to buy both a band saw and a plasma cutter. I'm already considering selling some expensive photography gear that I invested in and haven't or don't use much. I also have a Jet wet wheel sharpener (their copy of the Tormek) that I was underwhelmed with and used a few times and put away. I probably have some woodworking gizmos I could part with too... :-)

  14. #39
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    I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by BD1 View Post
    Many of us have a variety of goodies. We didn't buy them all at once either. Buy as you need and not just because you want. This is the saying ,
    Separate your wants from your needs.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Good advice. I feel I have a pretty good variety presently, but it was accumulated over a 50 year period. LOL


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    :

  15. #40
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    Re: I can only get one..

    [QUOTE=Lis2323;8726297]Good advise. I feel I have a pretty good variety presently but it was accumulated over a 50 year period. LOL

    I'm right there with you.
    It can get very expensive buying one of everything you need .
    You can do almost any project with basic tools. Having the right tool is priceless.
    Remember, anyone can do it with the right tool.


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  16. #41
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMasher View Post
    This is true and a good point. I'm not really beating myself up, I typically do a lot of research and spend time mulling things like this over. I'm sure I'll revisit it often between now and time to make the purchase. Who knows, things change, come next spring I might be in the position to buy both a band saw and a plasma cutter. I'm already considering selling some expensive photography gear that I invested in and haven't or don't use much. I also have a Jet wet wheel sharpener (their copy of the Tormek) that I was underwhelmed with and used a few times and put away. I probably have some woodworking gizmos I could part with too... :-)
    keep an eye on CRAIGSLIST the older 4x6s saws (green made in Taiwan) pop up quite often anywhere from like the one I picked up at $30 to $100, and they are better made than the newer red china made ones, usually they will have a smattering of surface rust nothing a few minutes cleaning won't handle... the same week I got that one about a dozen showed up on our local CL and on offerup, one guy had 3 of them with the "Ohio forge" name on em (exact same saw) for $100, put a good blade on them and a newer heavier power cord and your good to go..

  17. #42
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    Re: I can only get one..

    I am with the "get the bandsaw first" camp.
    I use Jet bandsaws, have had really good luck with them. Since 1978 I have worn two of them completely out- well, really 3, but number 3 got a bed transplant from the graveyard in the shed, so its back on the shop floor with a donor 40lb cast iron base. the first base lasted 20 years, so thats pretty good.
    I have never had the Jets throw blades, and they are pretty easy to keep tuned so they cut straight.

    I sit on em, and freehand cut everything from 16 gage to 1" thick plate, its slow but it works fine.

    The big trick with bandsaws is buy good blades- I like variable pitch 10-14 tooth bimetal blades from Starrett or Lenox, myself. Then, dont jam em or drop em on the work- because if you break out one tooth, the rest will follow.

    Plasma is great- but its more for rough cutting sheet and plate- fab shop work.

    A bandsaw will cut everything from 3" solid round, to angle, to miter square tube, to follow a pencil line on 1/8" plate for a blade blank. Takes some practice, but it works just fine.

  18. #43
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    Re: I can only get one..

    By the time we're too old to use them, most of should have accumulated most of the tools we really need.
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  19. #44
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by whtbaron View Post
    By the time we're too old to use them, most of should have accumulated most of the tools we really need.
    Arenít you just a ray of sunshine
    :

  20. #45
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    Arenít you just a ray of sunshine
    What about the bumper sticker.
    The one who dies with the most toys/tools
    Wins.

    Too old ? It may have taken 50 years to buy something you always wanted. Now you bought it and reached your goal.
    Never too old but you move slower. My dad is 92 and still does what he shouldn't ! He'll die working or doing something in basement.
    I guess I get that from him.
    Remember, WAKING up is good !!


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  21. #46
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Wow 92 YO is pretty good. I think I’ll be lucky if I am still around at 70.
    Lincoln, ESAB, Thermal Dynamics, Victor, Miller, Dewalt, Makita, Kalamzoo. Hand tools, power tools, welding and cutting tools.

  22. #47
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by N2 Welding View Post
    Wow 92 YO is pretty good. I think Iíll be lucky if I am still around at 70.
    Me too Tony. I hope I wake up after my nap !


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  23. #48
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Quote Originally Posted by Lis2323 View Post
    Don’t beat yourself up over your decision. Whatever you decide on will work but not be ideal for every scenario you encounter.

    I think you already know you will be adding other cutting options in the future.
    Exactly... no matter how many cutting options you have you will always be looking for the next (perfect) solution.
    I haven't built anything I can't throw away. Perfection is the journey.

    Mac

  24. #49
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    Re: I can only get one..

    Well said

  25. #50
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    Re: I can only get one..

    You're right, can only get one.
    One this month, one next month, and repeat.
    I did and do side work to fund my addiction.
    I do have a little income from selling my artwork. I still cannot pass by a garage sale.
    I always give young and old that I help out something to take home. I gotta get more people to teach.


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