Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

This forum is dedicated to those Hobbyists Interested in CNC machining in their home shops. (Digital Read Outs are also topical, as is CAD/CAM as it relates to CNC)

Moderator: Harold_V

Post Reply
AmericanMakerGarage
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 2:34 pm

Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by AmericanMakerGarage » Mon Aug 08, 2022 5:20 pm

I am dipping my toes in the waters of machining as a part-time gig. My focus for now will be small jobs from Xometry. I know some folks have strong opinions about Xometry, but for now it's the best option for me and my current goals. And now I have an opportunity to buy a used Tormach PCNC 1100.

If you were starting a small, one-person, side-gig CNC machining business in your garage, which one of the three machines below would you choose? Please keep in mind that my budget is somewhere in the $16k range.

My options are a ...
- New PCNC 440 with some extras.
- New 770M with very limited extras.
- Used PCNC 1100 with lots of extras, for a great price that is pushing my budget a little, but well below $20k. Below is a list of what comes with the used PCNC 1100.

A little about me:
I'm a tech nerd. I'm in my 36th year as software engineer. I love Fusion 360. I'm finishing off a Fusion 360 deep-dive course. In October, I head to Saunders Machine Works (DIY CNC) for his Hands On CNC Machining Training Class. I already own and work on an Emco Maximat Super 11 lathe and BP milling machine clone. I've considered doing a CNC conversion on the mill, but have decided that's not the path I want to go down.

Thanks!
Chris

Image

User avatar
Bill Shields
Posts: 8276
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2007 4:57 am
Location: Somewhere in the World
Contact:

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by Bill Shields » Mon Aug 08, 2022 6:21 pm

Have you ever stood next to one of these machines?

Define 'well below 20k'

Your location?
Too many things going on to bother listing them.

AmericanMakerGarage
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 2:34 pm

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by AmericanMakerGarage » Mon Aug 08, 2022 7:04 pm

Bill Shields wrote:
Mon Aug 08, 2022 6:21 pm
Have you ever stood next to one of these machines?
Define 'well below 20k'
Your location?

1) No
2) I'm working to get the seller to around $17,500.
3) Nashville, TN

User avatar
Bill Shields
Posts: 8276
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2007 4:57 am
Location: Somewhere in the World
Contact:

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by Bill Shields » Mon Aug 08, 2022 7:16 pm

Look machinio.com as a reference

Search milling machines

They are a clearing house for used machines

There are many machines at that price or below that would be my choice.
Too many things going on to bother listing them.

AmericanMakerGarage
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 2:34 pm

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by AmericanMakerGarage » Mon Aug 08, 2022 8:13 pm

Bill Shields wrote:
Mon Aug 08, 2022 7:16 pm
Look machinio.com as a reference. They are a clearing house for used machines
I will check the site out. Thank you!

User avatar
Bill Shields
Posts: 8276
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2007 4:57 am
Location: Somewhere in the World
Contact:

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by Bill Shields » Mon Aug 08, 2022 9:45 pm

The southwest bed mills are pretty decent and good sized machines. The 3 axis versions have a couple of programming quirks, but are very reliable.
Too many things going on to bother listing them.

FKreider
Posts: 299
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:44 pm
Location: Sturbridge, MA

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by FKreider » Fri Aug 19, 2022 7:59 pm

For $16k you could likely find a Haas mini mill in decent shape. That would be a lot more capable than any Tormach.
-Frank K.

AmericanMakerGarage
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 2:34 pm

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by AmericanMakerGarage » Thu Sep 08, 2022 6:47 pm

I thought I'd post a quick update. Since I submitted my first post and after a lot of discussions on various forums and with my family, I was able to increase my budget and I will be taking delivery of this Sharp SV-2412 SX sometime next week. I'll post more when the machine arrives. Thanks for your input, it helped!!!

FKreider
Posts: 299
Joined: Fri Feb 02, 2018 8:44 pm
Location: Sturbridge, MA

Re: Advice needed on buying aTormach CNC Mill

Post by FKreider » Tue Sep 13, 2022 4:51 pm

Good luck with the machine! looks nice!
-Frank K.

Post Reply