View Full Version : Shop Tools

12-16-2008, 10:32 PM
Tubing benders. Notchers. Welders.

What are you'll using?

Big Blue Baja

12-17-2008, 09:00 AM
Welcome to the site. Are you guys a new team this year? There are lots of threads here regarding the different tool options, you may want to search/browse the forums to read up on the different options.

When I was in Baja SAE my team had a Miller TIG welder, a crappy tube bender, and we just used milling machines with roughing endmills and hole saws to do our tube notching.

12-17-2008, 04:51 PM
Millermatic 210:D, homebuilt got trikes bender with protools dies:D, cheap POS harbour freight notcher that I basicly rebuilt from the ground up(learned my lesson there about cheap tools)[smilie=alright.gif].

12-17-2008, 05:54 PM
by the way welcome.

12-17-2008, 07:11 PM
Welcome aboard. Looks like your right down the road from me:D

06-27-2009, 09:36 PM
Don't cheap out on your tools. . .we used a ProTools Model 105 bender, a tube notcher from TrickTools, we had a lathe and a Bridgeport mill (we used the mill for all the holes because the drill press has too much slop in it and we couldn't keep our bolt patterns accurate enough with it), and since we are a welding shop we had our choice of welders. . .we used Millermatic 252's to MIG weld the chassis, a Miller Syncrowave 250 to TIG weld the suspension, and a ThermalArc Cutmaster 152 plasma cutter coupled with an optical tracer to cut our bracketry. . .

. . .the only thing I would change is to get rid of the optical tracer and go with a Torchmate CNC cutting set-up. . .much more reliable and accurate. . .we made the optical tracer work, there are just certain compromises you need to be aware of with an optical tracer. . .

06-27-2009, 09:50 PM
what kind of compromises ( with the optical tracer)

06-27-2009, 10:20 PM
With an optical tracer you are limited as to how tight of a radius you can cut. . .the tracer will lose the line and get confused if you try to go with too tight of a radius. . .I think we were able to get away with a 3/8" radius, but anything smaller than that and the tracer gets to the corner and turns around and goes the way it just came from. . .

. . .with a CNC cutter you can do true 90's (I know for brackets, etc. we don't want true 90's, but for other stuff it is nice to have the flexibility to have the machine do you what you want instead of limiting what you want to do with what the machine is capable of. . .). . .

08-03-2021, 12:46 AM
Waking up another old thread. I'm back in the garage again. I'm wondering if any of you have any bench/belt grinders in your shops. Are they worth having? If so, is there one worth spending a little bit more on over another?

08-03-2021, 02:22 AM
Very useful tool.

Just keep your thumb out of it.

Jet tools are probably one of the better bang for the buck brands. I’ve had a few pieces of that brand over the years and they’ve been good.

Grizzly tools are also quality for the price.

08-03-2021, 06:35 AM
Dude! [smilie=shocker.gif]

08-03-2021, 02:00 PM
Dude! [smilie=shocker.gif]
Yeah, I stopped a 10 inch, 60 grit disc in 2/3rds of a turn.
Was sanding a piece of flat when it caught, flipped me thumb up against the disc and wedged the two in between the disc and the little shelf.

Stood there for a second with the machine fighting to get going again, found the off switch and yelled for my buddy to bring a screw driver to help me unwedge my thumb.

That was only the second time (and last) that one of my machines bit me hard.

First time was got my hand too close to the chuck in the lathe - jaws were extended out a bit and one swung by and smacked my other thumb really, really hard. I bled awhile.

I am VERY respectful of my equipment - 30+ yrs of playing with them and I still have all 10 digits intact.

I get all kinds of grief for posting pics in flip flops - yeah, I wear proper shop clothes when working. Pics are usually at the end of the day when I’ve changed back into daily, non-shop stuff.

08-03-2021, 04:28 PM
Other than the normal burns from welding/grinding, all I've had is angle grinder and sheet metal cuts. Few explosive cutting disks could have been much worse. Nothing bad though.

Then again I can't get a trailer load of wood without needing plaster.[smilie=loser.gif]