Mill/Drill or Mill/Lathe Combo

CDHumiston

KNIFE MAKER
I need a new drill press, but all the talk on the forums has me leaning toward a Mill of some type.

I'm considering the Grizzly G0759 Mill/Drill with DRO and Stand or possibly a Mill/Lathe combo?

Both are the same price of right at $3000. Not sure I really need the lathe functions...
 

fitzo

Gold Membership
My 2 cents, Chris:
If you're buying a lathe and see eventual use in having a mill head on there, fine. If you're buying a mill that a lathe happens to come with, stick with the stand-alone mill. I have a small lathe with a mill head. I ended up buying a small mill due to its limitations and have wanted bigger since.

I'd think I'd died and gone to heaven to have that Grizzly in my basement.
 

Edwardshandmadeknives

Well-Known Member
I have a giant old lathe I got for free, built in 1906. It’s a beast, but still works good. I’ve had it for two years, and have yet to use it for anything meaningful. I would skip the lathe, I just haven’t gotten any use out of one. The price was right, so I have it I guess. Far as mills go, Jet makes one I’ve been kinda looking at, they are about that 3k range too. A mill would be nice to have, and I think a person could get a lot of use out of one, but I’ve been making knives for 29 years now without one, so I guess they aren’t “necessary”. If it were me, I’d save the money on a mill/lathe combo and put it towards more milling machine.
 

CDHumiston

KNIFE MAKER
So, it looks like a Mill/Drill will suit my needs better.

On another note, if I'm only making fixed blade knives should I just get a very nice Drill Press and skip the Mill all together?
 

bladegrinder

Well-Known Member
If it were me, I would get a mill first and maybe later a lathe. I always wanted a lathe and still might get one but I've been making knives over 30 years and have gotten by without a lathe. I could probably get by without a mill but it sure come's in handy for some things. if I didn't own this one, I'd buy one. I just added a DRO to the Z axis and I like it even better.
I'll say this, if you want one, can afford it, and have room for it...get one. their only going to go up in price every year you wait.
 

jmforge

Well-Known Member
The only disadvantage to a small mill/drill over a big floor standing drill press is length of stroke. If you ever plan on making hidden tang knives with guards, a mini-mill is what you want.
 

John Wilson

Well-Known Member
I have the enhanced Sieg X2D feom Little Machine Shop. As far as mills go, it’s a toy by anyone’s definition. But I love that thing dearly. Knowing what I know now, I’d have gotten a bigger mill like the grizzly g0704 or precision matthews of the same size. But cost is always a factor and I wanted to see if i’d really use a mill before i spent a lot of money. Well, the answer is yes.

Drill presses are cheap and take up zero room. I have the Porter Cable 1HP with the 4 inch stroke. I love it. You can sell one knife and buy that drill press.
 

CDHumiston

KNIFE MAKER
Anyone have experience with the Grizzly G0759? Looks pretty nice and has a DRO. Plus I can get it delivered for free from Home Depot and cheaper than direct from Grizzly...
 

Racerboy

New Member
I purchased a G0759 used about two years ago, and it’s performed as you might expect for a low end mill with a pretty nice DRO. I added power feed and lift which made it super nice for me. It will never cut like a big mill, but it improved my precision, making it possible to make quality folders without the slow and laborious labor required to make the builds with my drill presses. In short, it’s become as important to me as almost anything in my shop except my grinder, disc grinder, or heat treat oven. I’ve only replaced a few failed parts that totaled less than $100 and a few minutes labor. All in all, a great tool for me.
 
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