Well, I finally found a good deal on a piece of vintage Japanese iron: the Shizuoka ST-N 3 Axis CNC milling machine w/ Bandit control circa 1970's.
The machine itself looks like it hasn't been used all that much and has been sitting idle for the last 10 years or so in a machine shop up in the California foothills. Apparently the machine was parked due to a bad axis and was given to the machinist to store in his shop. Time passed and the original owner never returned to claim his iron. Now, the machine shop is struggling so the owner is selling off some of the equipment. I found his ad on Craigslist for two machines and decided to drive up for a look. The AN-S model, which is in nearly showroom condition is much too big for my use and weighs in at 4500 lbs. But the ST-N model is 3000 lbs and is easier to move around with a small forklift. I made the owner a ridiculous offer hoping that he would laugh or just not respond. Time passed and he accepted my ridiculous offer. Now I'm on the hook to get this beast out of his shop and down into my garage.
Of course the controls are ancient Bandit equipment and at least one of the drive cards is bad. So, this machine will be the perfect candidate for a control retrofit and a set of Gecko drives.
Transporting a 3000 lb monster to my garage (10/07/09)
Cleaning off years of dust and grime to see what is underneath (10/10/09)
Retrofitting the Shizuoka ST-N with a modern PC-based controller
The Mighty Shizuoka is up and making parts! See the first ones here
I'm tired of the 2.5 HP 3 Phase motor and 5 HP Phase converter heating up the garage, so it's time for a 1/4 HP spindle!
Working Surface: 39 3/8" x 9 13/16" X Travel: 23 5/8" Y Travel: 12" Z Travel: 15 3/4" Overarm Travel: 13 3/4" Spindle speed: 700 - 7000 RPM variable pitch belt Spindle taper: NMTB-40 Ways: Box Lead Screws: 1 3/32" ground ball screws @ 5 TPI Weight: 3000lbs Motors: Stepper Controller: Bandit Power Supply: X