I need to buy some new cutting bits and all my old local sources are out of business / gone. Any advice is appreciated. I see lots of stuff on Amazon and eBay from China, and a few US made tools that look better.
I need some new 1/4" AR / AL style bits. Never had any with the replaceable tips, always had the brazed carbide style.
It's sad when the stuff we used to find locally is no longer there. I bought some 1/4" ones from Enco
before they re-named themselves. I'm no expert but they do what I want them to.
Royce- are your old ones worn out or just dull?
If dull, I can regrind and lap them for you for the price of postage.
McMaster - Carr is an excellent source.
Virtually all my lathe tools are replaceable/indexable carbide. Locally I have a couple of tool stores that target the "hobbiest"(sorry that doesn't help you much). I have also looked at swap meets and flee markets.
I have learned to buy a bunch of carbide inserts with the tool holders, as in a couple of years the style might no longer be available.
One of the nice things about the replaceable/indexable inserts is that if you are half way into a job and you chip the tool, you can just replace the cutting edge without disturbing the setup. I have digital readouts on all my machines and wouldn't want to be without them. Well worth the day it takes to install and on the lathe it reads in diameter.
Hope you find a suitable source that suits you
MSC is good: mscdirect.com At least some of their products are USA and they tend to identify country of origin.
McMaster Carr has USA products but even they, I think, struggle to keep US products in the line up. McMaster.com
Shars tools is supposed to be good but I have not bought anything from them. http://www.shars.com/?trk_msg=SNHB682026F4RFD7JG2ALD73KG&trk_contact=4FU69FPHPGQ 923P7J9DQ372D7O&trk_module=wel&utm_source=Listrak&utm_medium=Email&utm_term=Shar s+Tools&utm_campaign=Welcome+Series&utm_content=Modal+Message+2
I use these but some people don't since they are from H.F.
The other thing I've added to my lathe and love is a "quick change " tool post. I know not directly related to your question, but perhaps if interest
I have KDK quick change tool holders for my 2 lathes. Also, use mostly replaceable style cutting bits even on my boring bars. Still use old style cutting tools requiring hand grinding for special requirements.
McMaster Carr is a great source for good quality cutting tooling. Order on line and they quickly ship. Some times....next day delivery.
Its a shame Enco was bought out by MSC. You could get decent quality stuff cheap. I get emails from MSC all the time but their prices are too high even with their sales. So I guess its Shars or Grizzly or some of the others will now get my business.
If I need something special, Mc Master Carr is hard to beat. I agree you can count on quality from them.
All that said, when it comes to tool holders I get the good stuff, ie Aloris tool posts and holders, Buck chucks, etc. You'd be surprised what deals you can get on eBay from time to time.
Some of each - I don't have any spares, so I really need to buy more. I may send some to you to see if any can be saved.
Les what kind of digital readout attachments do you recommend? I see some on eBay for $100 that look like they would work.
I just remembered the surplus tool place around the corner from my office. Will go by there tomorrow at lunch to see what they have. I like spending American if possible. Local is even better.
I have three of the ones made in Canada by www.star-techno.com. Yes they cost more than $100.00!! The readouts are "non-volatile " so power bumps are not a issue. The computers in the readout is quite powerful.
Royce Wholesale tool in Tulsa has some good tooling and they ship to me in arkansas quick the have an online catolouge and will send you one.
I buy my lathe tooling from Kitts Industrial Tools. Decent quality and great customer service.
I guess I find that KBC tools has just about everything I am usually looking for and they generally have a choice of USA or import on just about everything where both are making it. They have local stock in Chicago area and with one more day they can ship it from Michigan. So for me I get what I want in one day usually and 2 days tops. They are at:
I am not a terrific machinist so my needs are generally modest. Your mileage may vary.
Little Machine Shop.com located in Pasadena, Ca.
1 800 981 9663 They cater to small shops and
individuals. They are on line.
I have been doing machining for 33 years you need a tool post system that allows you to get your tools on center like the quick change. I also advise getting some insert type tools. You need a face turn tool a groove tool and a few boring bars to start. Msc has some import stuff that isn't too expensive. Philip
As a machinist and fabricator of a 35 man shop and owner since 1962 I have had great confidence in www.mscdirect.com There price and delivery are great with excellent selection of tools and materials. A quick change tool post on any size lathe is in my opinion is a must have.
When I was still working, we had an outside company install an X/Y Digital Readout on a large older Monark lathe. The system cost around $2000 plus installation.
The most time was spent installing the Electronic Scales and chip guards. Mounting the Read Out and cables was not that difficult. The lathe hand dials had very fine divisions and were hard to read.
The lathe was a gear head style, very heavy and stable. Could take heavy cuts with out chatter. Having a Digital Readout made it much easier to use. Except for our CNC lathe, the other lathes had Track Dials that were added at some time.
At home, I have an older (Mid 80's) Bridgeport Mill that has digital readout for X and Y axis.
I bought my quick change tool post from MSC and am happy with it. Their prices are right.
I went to CDC Products at lunch today and they had brand new carbide cutters made in USA at $23.95 for a box of ten in either AR or AL. I bought a box of the AR and a few of the AL at $2.50 each. Awesome place, I currently have an old lantern style tool holder. They had some used quick change setups at $200 for the whole thing with several adapters.
Here's a video:
I got my order from McMaster Carr last night with about a dozen lathe bits. Every one USA made. Probably not as cheap as CDC but there is no place anywhere around here to buy them so I order them.