New Arc X2 super mill

Anyone got one? Any good?
Looks nice, especially the 500W brushless motor, no gears, stiffer column. Looks like it's still got that horrible X2 vertical action though.
http://www.arceurotrade.co.uk/Catalogue/Machines-Accessories/Milling-Machines/Model-Super-X2-Plus-Mill
Ketan, are you going to do a metric MT3 version?
-- Peter Fairbrother
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MT3 currently in imperial version. MT3 will also be available in Metric version sometime early next year I hope...subject to Chinese holidays....slow boats....production costs..etc.. Either way, all MT3/ R8 out of stock at present, which is good and bad....met my targets for the factory...failed to order enough...it seems!....even though it still has the "horrible X2 vertical action".:-)...
Ketan at ARC.
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Peter,
Please, could you enlighten us as to what's wrong with it?
David
--
David Littlewood

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David Littlewood wrote:

I don't own an X2, and I haven't had much of a chance to use one, but it seems to be a common complaint.
The basic idea behind the X2 mill/drill Z-axis arrangement - a handle to move the entire head with a quill-like action for drilling, and a separate handle for fine feed and positioning when milling - was actually a good idea.
It would be an even better idea for a belt-driven mill with a brushless motor and no gears, as the lack of a quill (which has to be loose enough to slide, and thus will unavoidably vibrate) and gears could make the mill very quiet and vibration-free indeed.
The problem is the execution of the idea. On the two examples I have played with the quill-like action handle for drilling works reasonably well, but the positioning and fine feed knob (which should be a handle, not a knob) doesn't.
You can't set a height and repeat it. A digital height gauge can mitigate this, but...
Positioning is done on a rack, not a screw, which is inherently less accurate. It's also sloppy. When you release the gib lock after a cut, the head moves. The head also creeps if the gib lock isn't used.
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/7x10minilathe/message/165640 has some more details.
-- Peter Fairbrother
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Peter,
Thanks
David
--
David Littlewood

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It's designed like that so people will have something to moan about. Hypothetical anyway as the people who moan the most have no intention of every buying one.
John S.
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John S wrote:

That is a very weird thing to say. It implies only stupid people buy these products. It also implies that such stupid people will buy one, then keep quiet once they encounter the flaw.
Do you sell them, or something?
--
AC

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No, re-read my tongue in cheek remarks. The people who do the most moaning about ANY design are never in the market to buy said product.
The people who do buy the product in the main are aware of any short comings before hand or are prepared to either work around the problem or re-design it.
Lets face it there have been many, many pages published in the mags on improving a know design, probably because no one has ever designed a machine tool that appeals to everyone.
Many people have to buy machines for this hobby with limitations, these limitations can be size, cost, weight or a combination of all three. You have to chose a machine which ticks most boxes and work around the rest.
I could write a resume on all these hobby machines starting off with the limitations and only dwelling a bit on the good features.
I could then write a resume of the same machines dealing with the plus features and glossing over any limitations or even ignoring them all together.
Which write up is correct ?
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John S wrote:

Of course they are. They are the ones who are unhappy with the product.
-- Peter Fairbrother
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John S wrote:

Ream them. Didnt even slightly come across are tongue in cheek.

I find they are people who find out after they bought it.

And tell others about that, no?

Personally, I have never read about this "issue" before, but then I dont read these mags. TBH, the price range would make me less likely to care, since I would assume at that price every different make would have some ups and downs, and normally they can be worked round. If one is a hobby user, then that is some of the fun in its self. If I were spending 4 times that I would put some research in. But then I would expect the machine not to have silly annoying habits, as it were.
To me, the so called moan was an interesting read. But then I am no expert. I'm way below that.

Of course. No reason not to point out the flaws though.

Neither, both would be incomplete and misleading. Both should be combined. To do different would seem a bit shady to me.
And, then, why complain that customers, or who ever, who point out these things? Surely its the very feed back a manufacturer needs to improve the product. Or not. Which tells its own story.
--
AC

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Perhaps because the column issue only exists in one persons mind ?
Do a search on the American forums where this machine far outsells any other and see what the problems are, the rack and pinion drive never seems to be an issue there.
John S.
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John S wrote:

Fair enough. Still worth knowing and considering. Every thing new starts in one person's mind. Would you have discounted general relativity? ;)
--
AC

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. Would you have discounted general relativity? ;)

Dunno, was he in the Gulf war ?
John S.
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Hi Peter,
This Super X2 Plus is belt drive with brushless motor. The positioning of the Z Axis is done on a rack, which has its own set of limitations. Still, there are people who are happy with the results they get from this "family of X2 mills". The views expressed about the limitations - some of which are stated above - will depend on a persons personal point of view, experience, and expectations. I have well experienced engineers as well as complete novices who have purchased this mill and used them without major issues/problems. One machine has been returned as the large handle used to mesh/engage the rack (dont know the best way to explain this) is very stiff to start with, and in this particular case of return, the customer had a disability which I had fogoten about (old regular customer), which made it difficult for him to handle this. This engagement/disengagement operation is especially difficult for people who have arthritis with limited power in the hands and arm. Other then that, as far as I am concerned, it does the job of drilling nd milling quite well...in my openion.
Ketan at ARC.
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Ketan Swali wrote:

It may be interesting to contrast the new Super X2 with the old X2. Here's Ketan on uk.rec.models.engineering May 16 2006, on why Arc stopped selling the X2 mill:
"It had / has a niche. There were technical issues such as circuit board, table size (width), limited table travel, restricted Z movement, rack & pinion movement, some of which restricted sales. The main thing it has going for it is the motor. Commercial reasons such as competition was just a minor issue."
https://groups.google.com/group/uk.rec.models.engineering/msg/e377e653a1b565be?hl=en
Well the circuit board issue is history, the table size and width are now much bigger on the new version, and table travel is increased and seems sufficient.
The restricted Z movement and rack & pinion movement seem unchanged however.
The new motor sounds nice (but the old one was okay?) and the lack of gears is a big plus.
Shame they didn't fix the Z axis though - like backgear on the mini-lathe, a decent Z axis drive on the mini mill is the almost-essential which would make the machines near perfect (or a near-perfect "kit of parts") - but for some inexplicable reason Sieg etc seem unwilling to provide them.
The only reason I can think of is perhaps it's because their focus has been on CNC machines, not manual ones.
-- Peter Fairbrother
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http://www.arceurotrade.co.uk/Catalogue/Machines-Accessories/Milling-Machines/Model-Super-X2-Plus-Mill
For the record, what is wrong with the vertical action?
jsw
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