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what do you guys think about these tools >

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by learning_towalk, Mar 24, 2006.


  1. learning_towalk

    learning_towalk Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2004
    Chattanooga, TN
    Hey guys a woman in town offered me an apollo drill press and a 10" black and decker band saw for 100 bucks for the pair (I can probobally talk her down a little bit)

    black and deckers from what I read are pretty hit or miss...but I can' find anything about apollo drill presses online

    any help/opinions would be appreciated
     
  2. Even a cheap drill press is a good thing. Consider, though, that you can get a new one from Harbor Freight for cheap (I got the $90 one for 40 on sale). I guess it comes down to the quality of the bandsaw, then. I can't help you there.
     
  3. nateo

    nateo Schubie Fan #1

    Mar 2, 2003
    Ottawa, Ontario
    When looking at cheap tools I've heard a few words of wisdom. First, you get what you pay for. That's not a slight on the name brands you're looking at, it's just something to keep in mind. Second, any tool is better than no tool. Finally, in the long run cheaper tools are almost never cheaper, since you'll likely replace them with better and more expensive tools down the road.

    Of course, I can't really say that I practice what I preach. I like deals, and I generally feel that I can either make do with or improve upon most of the cheap tools I buy. In your specific case even cheap versions of those tools would cost more, so you're not in a bad place from the start. A good blade for the bandsaw and some time spent on the adjustments should make it able to do most if not all of what you demand from it (just don't expect to be resawing 14" logs).

    If money is no object, buy better tools. If it is, or if you're just tight, then that's not a bad deal.

    -Nate
     
  4. These comments are not intended to disuade from buying the tools you mentioned, just to be cautious with what you spend your money on. Don't rush into buying tools, make sure you know what your getting for the price because you may regret it if you research after you buy. The last thing you want to do is buy tools that don't meet your expectations or needs. So, check all the deals going and the specs. Know the gotchas for different tools, which will help you when comparing them.

    I'm not sure whether a 10" bandsaw table is big enough, maybe for body wings. It may be possible to make a larger table with a fence that will be adequate though. Anyway, the table should be flat, square and solid so when you cut it doesn't cut on an angle (save on squaring the ends when sanding) and is stable. I've got an old solid bandsaw and don't know what the newer cheapies are like so cannot comment there.

    The drill press should be as accurate as possible (if it's not accurate it will give you migraines for as long as you have it) and have a few different speeds (mine has 16 and is used for both woodwork and metalwork). Check that the chuck doesn't wobble, maybe put a largish drill bit in it turn it on to check. Also, make sure it has enough depth adjustment for your needs. Check for cracks in the table casting (ie. column). Hopefully, the table is adjustable (definitely height, and possibly tilt). Make sure that the pullies and belts are in good condition. I don't know much about motors so cannot help you there.

    Generally, I don't go for the most expensive tools, if I did that I'd either be working myself to the bone or spend years saving the money for them and getting no woodwork done. If one is available at a reasonable price, I'll consider it depending on it's usefulness, reliability and longevity compared to other competitors.
     
  5. learning_towalk

    learning_towalk Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2004
    Chattanooga, TN
    my cousin's step dad used to be a cabinet builder and switched to being a truck driver...well all of his tools were given to my cousin and he said if I would come get em (around Chicago) that I could have all of his dad's tools...

    he said he has all kinds of tools...he mentioned a floor drill press, band saw, lathe, planer, thickness sander...and he said he knows that there's a lot more in his garage, and said that I'm welcome to all of it... I asked him what brand they were and his reply was "my dad never bought cheap anything and he was always proud of his tools, but he's retired from that, and they're in my way...so come get em and they're yours"

    I'm gonna rent a little uhaul (or borrow a friend's truck/trailer) and take a weekend to go up and get em...I'm pumped!!! just thought I'd share my "inheritance" with you guys
     
  6. Man, that's a hell of a thing to happen to ya. Make sure you put them to good use. If it's on offer, take what you can.
     

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