Mini-Mill Versions

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Versions of the Mini Mill

Several vendors now offer versions of the mini mill.  Most of these mills are made by Sieg, the same company that makes most of the mini-lathes, and the quality is generally very good. LittleMachineShop.com has a chart comparing the features of some of the major brands and, incidentally, is a great source of accessories and repair parts.

Here's a quick rundown of the mills offered by various vendors:


Grizzly Mini Mill SKU G8689

07/21/02. I have owned one of these for about two years now and have been very happy with it. It was pretty much the original standard, but many other models have since been offered by other vendors. At this time, it still has the #3 Morse Taper spindle, while the Homier and Harbor Freight models have switched to an R8 spindle. Accessories for the MT spindle are more expensive, but the spindle is about an inch shorter, so you have that much more range in the Z-axis movement compared with the R8 machines. I have used both the R8 and MT3 versions of the mill and there's not much difference between them in actual operation. For more info on this mill, see the Features page.

Grizmill[1].gif (42168 bytes)

Here are the specs for the Grizzly mill:


Harbor Freight SKU 44991, $499.99

07/21/02. This is the Sieg X2 mill with an R8 spindle and is very similar to Grizzly, Micro-Mark and Homier mini-mills. For several years, HF sold another mill, SKU 36739, but now appears to have replaced the other model with this one.

TWO-SPEED VARIABLE MINI MILL/DRILL MACHINE


Harbor Freight Micro Mill SKU 47158, $299.99

(07/21/02) Introduced recently is a new smaller version of the mini-mill, suitable for users who have limited space, limited budget and can work within the more restrictive capacity limits of this machine. I have not yet seen one of these first-hand, but it is made by Sieg as their X1 model, and this leads me to expect that the quality is the same as you would find on the larger mini-mills.

MICRO MILL/DRILL


Harbor Freight SKU 36739, $549.99

Update: 7/21/02 This mill appears to have been discontinued.

VARIABLE SPEED MINI MILLING MACHINE

Here are the specs on this one:


Harbor Freight SKU 42976 Mill/Drill, $379.99

(07/21/02) This machine is really more of a drill with milling capability than a true milling machine, but a number of folks who have bought it have reported good results using it as a mill. It is larger and heavier than the mini-mill and a bargain price at $379.99 (sometimes less on sale). One weakness is the lack of a fine Z-axis feed, but at least one owner has developed a fine-feed mod. According to the specs, it has a #2 Morse Taper spindle, which seems too small for a machine of this size, but all the accessories listed for it are #2MT, so I guess it really is.

12 SPEED DRILL/MILL MACHINE


Homier (Speedway) SKU 03947, $399.99

(07/21/02) Another instance of the Sieg X2 mini mill with the R8 spindle is offered by Homier at a very compelling price. Homier runs travelling tent shows around the country and you can sometimes pick one of these up at the show and avoid the freight charges. The availability at the shows seems to be very iffy, though, so ordering from the Homier web site is generally a quicker and more reliable way to get one. For more information on this model, check out my comprehensive review.

Speedway Series Mill


Micro Mark SKU 82573

Micro Mark is a great source of tools for hobbyists and home shop machinists - especially hard to find miniature and precision hand tools. They offer a version of the mini mill for $529.95.   Unlike some of the others, this one has leadscrews that are in true inch measurements, providing both accurate feeds in inches and simpler divisions on the dials.   Accoring to their web site, the leadscrews are 0.050 inches per turn. Micro-Mark also offer a metric to inch conversion kit that can be used on the Sieg X2 model mills sold by other vendors.

MICROLUX MILLING MACHINE

Here are the specs from the Micro Mark page:

Table size: 16 inches wide x 3-3/4 inches deep
Table travel (X direction): 8 inches
Cross slide travel (Y direction): 4 inches
Headstock travel (Z direction): 7 inches
Clearance (spindle to table-top): 11 inches
Center of spindle to face of column: 6 inches
Spindle speed: variable between 0 and 2500 rpm
Spindle taper: MT-3
Column angle: tilts from -45 degrees to +45 degrees
Motor: 350 watt (0.47 hp), 110vAC, 50/60 Hz
Overall size: 30 inches high x 20 inches deep x 20 inches wide
Weight: 110 pounds (basic machine without accessories).

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