At least Doc you have your 'condition' under control.

At least Doc you have your 'condition' under control.

Joined: October 11th, 2014, 3:36 am

January 10th, 2018, 3:13 am #1

For the most part at any rate. Well, mostly due to room and funds available. It would be most interesting to just what would happen if you won a big chunk of money and you came across a lot of good buys.

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

January 10th, 2018, 5:36 am #2

It's worth keeping in mind that there's three factors helping keep my Old Iron Disease under control:

One, this is Alaska. There just aren't that many machines up here. Even common stuff like lathes and mills only very rarely come up for sale up here, and compared to the dirt-cheap prices you guys in the states pay, when they do they're asking absurd prices. (Like a Bridgeport for just under $10K.)

And more obscure stuff, like metal-cutting vertical bandsaws, (or for that matter, non-import horizontals) power hacksaws, tool-and-cutter grinders, horizontal mills, good quality older US-made drill presses, and that sort of thing, virtually never show up.

My Nichols is the only horizontal mill I've ever seen on CL (well, not counting when I listed and sold that little Atlas I had ) I've only ever seen one other metal shaper listed (a 24" Cincinnati, that likely weighed 10K lb) and the only tool-and-cutter grinder I've ever seen for sale was an old (also Cincinnati) listed incorrectly as a "vertical mill", and which came with absolutely zero tooling- not even a grinding wheel or so much as a hub for the grinding wheel. For $1,500.

I could root through eBay and buy whatever I wanted, but that's not *quite8 as easy as driving 30 minutes North and picking it up in the back of my truck.

Number two is of course money. As most of you who are trying their hand at self-employment might know, especially in paintball, this is not exactly a big moneymakin' business, unless you're already a big company like DYE or BLAST.

Business has been improving a bit, slowly, and I can say that '17 was one of the best I've ever had in this biz, but that's really not saying much and that still doesn't mean I can buy whatever I want. (Sometimes it just means you can get the premium brand Top Ramen, rather than buying that generic warehouse-store stuff. )

And three is, as you all well know, space. Thanks to Old-Tool-itis and general packrattishness, my shop, sheds and office are jam-freakin' packed, so much so that it's often hard to get a job done easily because I literally have no clear workbench- or even just a flat spot to set something.

Last year I did try and start reversing that, and got rid of the spare surface grinder and the older valve grinder. I also meant to try and get rid of the small shaper and maybe the other valve grinder, but I just didn't have the time to get around to them.

And then, of course, I added the big cabinet for the Shapeoko router, which currently takes up more room than the surface grinder did, and topped that off recently by adding the paper cutter. (It didn't help my office any to jam two giant laser printers and a binding machine in there either. )

And this summer, I need to build stands for my T-shirt presses and get those up and running- I only bought that equipment three years ago now.

However, I still hope to reduce things a little more over the course of this year.

Much as I like the big Exacto mill, and as handy as it is to have a second full-fledged vertical mill, it's a third again bigger than my Grizzly, and takes up a LOT of space. I'm strongly leaning toward the idea of putting it up for sale, and putting that cash towards a stripped-down, entry-level Tormach CNC mill.

If all goes well, I should finally be able to send the bed of the Springfield off for grinding (I've been waiting for my CNC guy to make his long-planned trip to the states to get the rest of his machines) and if that happens, I'll be reassembling the monster along the back wall of the main shop, where it'll be a LOT more out of the way, and reopen the other car bay.

Also toying with the idea of passing on the horizontal Wellsaw, as I haven't used it more than once or twice since I got the DoAll vertical.

I should also finally take the time to finish up the Lewis shaper and pass that along for whatever price somebody will give me for it, and I'll probably try to put the other valve grinder up for sale too.

Lose all those, ditch the spare MIG I was given (unknown if it works, I may just pass it on as-is) move the sandblaster out into the shed (I don't use it that often anyway) maybe also get rid of the big Queen City pedestal grinder (I don't use it enough to justify the space) and do some general cleanin' (and get the 12-bolt down off the welding table and slung under the Cutlass where it belongs ) and that should open things up a bunch, make it easier to get the real work done.