Combination Machines

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sammo

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As I got great advice when choosing a SCMS earlier this year - thought I would look for some more...

I am thinking of buying a combination machine - Minimum of Table Saw / Spindle Moulder and thicknesser planner...
It appears that this is the best option for someone like myself with a smallish workshop...

Not sure as to model (as I plan to keep an eye on e-bay for a little while)

Any pro's and con's I should be aware of?

What are the makes I should keep an eye out for - at present there are a few on e-bay...

And of course Axminster and D&M tools have new machines...
 

jasonB

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Don't get one with a single motor you will soon get fed up with belt changing.

Make sure the spindle is a common size eg 30mm some of the smaller combis have 20mm spindles, same with the arbor for the blade

Get one with blade rise & fall and tilt, again some you have to tilt the table which makes it useless for anything but thin strips.

Something like a Kity bestcombi2000 would be a useful machine but not the earlier Bestcombi.

Jason
 

JonnyD

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The Better ones to look for are made by Felder and Minimax but will still be pretty pricey secondhand. The hobby machines to look out for are the Kity as jason reccomends or the record ones.

cheers

jon
 

Steve Maskery

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If space is your concern, be aware that most combis require space all round the machine. In a narrow workshop like mine, that negates any advantages I may have from reducing the number of machines.

Just a consideration.
S
 

Alf

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Yup, Steve's right. If space is tight, make sure you're able to at least move the thing easily. I can't owing to a far from level floor and it's a real pain.

Oh, and personally I'd avoid the Maxi 26 (badged under a number of different manufacturers over the years). Unless you're in Cornwall and want to buy one, in which case it's a wonderful machine. :wink:
 

beech1948

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Yup, Steve and Alf are right.

I have a Felder combi CF741 with a 2m support arm on the sliding table.

Space around the machine is needed at a minimum of a 5m x 4m to manoeuvre around with wood or 8x4 panel in hand as well as move wood through the machine.

Smaller combis will need less space but not by much down to say 4x3m at a minimum.

Of course the reverse is true in that in that space you have at least 3 machines ..a P/T, Saw and Spindle.

The Felder is brilliant at producing results but I'm not sure you will fit a combi into a small workshop.

regardss
Alan
 

sammo

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Thanks all - I certainly don't have the space to handle full sized boards, and accept that the first cuts will have to be out side in the garden, or the B&Q service.

I had assumed that I would put the thing on wheels so that I can move it about, my floor is level enough to do this.
 

woodshavings

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Where abouts are you Sammo?

I have a Maxi 26 Combination that, unlike Alf, I am quite happy with it!
Its not the quality or as solid as a Felder, but providing you fettle it and are aware of its "features" it does a good job. It can be moved around on its integral wheel set but you do need a reasonable level floor.

If you are local to me (NE Hamphire) I would be happy to show you.

John
 

Lons

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jasonB":2dxk5kfa said:
Don't get one with a single motor you will soon get fed up with belt changing.

Make sure the spindle is a common size eg 30mm some of the smaller combis have 20mm spindles, same with the arbor for the blade

Get one with blade rise & fall and tilt, again some you have to tilt the table which makes it useless for anything but thin strips.

Something like a Kity bestcombi2000 would be a useful machine but not the earlier Bestcombi.

Jason

Hi Sammo

I wouldn't necessarily agree with Jason as my experience is different but it has to be considered in the context of your actual requirements (as apposed to aspirations).

There is a world of difference between the hobby machines and the large pro equipment.

I bought a Kity K5 in 1987 just before they re-badged it as a bestcombi.

My reasons were simple:- I'd just bought a house which needed a lot of work. I had quite a lot of tools but only machine was a bandsaw. Very limited workshop space and even less spare cash.
The K5 was a 5 function machine at a reasonable cost / simple individual machines so less to go wrong / small footprint / very easy to move and store in a corner when not in use.

It was used very extensively for the first 15 years and never once let me down during which time I produced some decent results including a full oak kitchen.
Changing the belt function takes all of 10 seconds and the 1hp motor has been very robust.
Providing the machine is used within its' limitations and that "production runs" are planned to avoid re-setting guides it's a very useful bit of kit.

I have used mine regularly outside on a patio and have even transported it on my trailer a couple of times to jobs.

I still own and use it regularly for speed and convenience despite having a range of full size separates (workshop not set up fully yet) and I doubt I will ever part with it.

You pays your money etc. and we all want the best quality and biggest capacity equipment but if you just don't have the space, the money or both it can be worth consideration :)

cheers

Bob
 

Jacob

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woodshavings":du6vxn09 said:
Where abouts are you Sammo?

I have a Maxi 26 Combination that, unlike Alf, I am quite happy with it!
Its not the quality or as solid as a Felder, but providing you fettle it and are aware of its "features" it does a good job. It can be moved around on its integral wheel set but you do need a reasonable level floor.

If you are local to me (NE Hamphire) I would be happy to show you.

John
I had one too, for years, and did loads of work with it. Much better than it looks and the single motor changeover is faster than on my current machine - Minimax lab 300. 3 motors just a fashion, one motor a design challenge!
Minimax excellent BTW. Get a long sliding table if you can.
 

johnf

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I have a hammer c3 31 very happy with it extremely accurate and solid your welcome to give it the once over if your in sussex
 

sammo

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woodshavings":1agtvego said:
Where abouts are you Sammo?

I have a Maxi 26 Combination that, unlike Alf, I am quite happy with it!
Its not the quality or as solid as a Felder, but providing you fettle it and are aware of its "features" it does a good job. It can be moved around on its integral wheel set but you do need a reasonable level floor.

If you are local to me (NE Hamphire) I would be happy to show you.

John

I am near Croydon... I don't mind a trip out, all depends how deep into NE Hampshire you are....
 

Tim Nott

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What Jason B said, but with cast iron tables. I got a Robland 260 - it's somehat crude in the saw fence and height adjustments but is built like a (Belgian) brick outhouse
 

sammo

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Had a day out on Sunday - went and saw Woodshavings combination machine; didn't realy see any problems with moving the belts around, took seconds each time... Then off to LarryS in bath, and purchased his dust extractor and a couple of clamps.

Then later Woodshavings was in touch and after a little negotiations I find myself the proud owner of a combination machine... now all I need to do is work out how to get it home...

Thanks for all the advice..
 

Max Power

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What the hell are you doing to that felder Jeff :lol: I've had the same model for three years and its been excellent and other than consumables and lubrication I haven't had to touch it :)
 

jeffinfrance

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i guess you're just lucky alan.

it seems that everytime i try something new, i find faults with the set up. this time it's the unparallel, parallel fence. i'm sure the main problem was the delivery and friday afternoon quality control syndrome.

give felder their credit, they seem as determined as me to sort it. but i would never buy another combi. there's just too much going on, and too many possible problems. i'm on my way to discovering them all.

jeff
 
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