Pluses and minuses

As far as I know, there have not been any deliveries of the MR-1 to an outside customer. All we know at this point is information and videos from Langmuir’s marketing people. In Texas we have a saying " All hat and no cattle". We have a unit on order for our makerspace, the unit is due late November.
Right now, let’s post what we have seen that we like about the MR-1. Later we can post our concerns and the Langmuir folks can correct us if our assumptions are incorrect.

  1. The totally enclosed work area, no chips or coolant going everywhere.
  2. Large work area, the 10x20" area is much larger that something like the Tormek 440 has.
  3. Affordable probe, tool setter, and other accessories.
  4. Very good price, a lot of machine for the $.
  1. Pricepoint. Nothing on the market compares
  2. Work envelope. 23x21.8 is larger than any Tormach, and larger than base Haas Tool, Mini and Compact mills. Yes the Haas machines can have a much larger Y-axis. The MR-1 does fall far short in Z travel
  3. Software looks easy enough and capable

I’m really hoping I can place an order next spring, for the price, the work area and apparent precision is untouched.


Now a few minuses. Things to watch out for.

  1. The 6" of Z travel can be a problem. A 1/2" double end mill is 4.125" long. Use of a drill chuck could be a problem. Reminds me of my mill-drill days.
  2. Is the spindle drilled deep enough to use double ended end mills?
  3. ER-20 collets have a minimum size of 1/16". If you need to drill a smaller hole you will need something to hold the drill bit. I use an ER-16 extension with the shank cut short.
  4. How do you tram the spindle?
  5. The base plate is aluminum with 1/4-20 holes for holding vises and other workholding needs. I could be wrong about the 1/4-20, it seems very small and would wear out quickly.
  6. If the base plate gets damaged and needs replacing, how can that be done?
  7. The 10x20 baseplate is made as two 10x10 pieces. Why not one solid piece?
  8. There does not seem to be any reasonable way to move the machine without the danger of twisting the bed and cracking the concrete.

steel box filled with concrete…if…and if you could put enough torshion to crack the concrete the machine would be a total loss at that point…
here are some basic tricks for concrete…

  • when mixing a bag of concrete add 1 tablespoon of liquid dish soap…this add air to the mixture and makes it harder…much harder…
  • when pouring the concrete into the base…toss in a bunch of old wire coat hangers…this acts as a type of re-bar and will reinforce the concrete…
  • after pouring the concrete place a wet towel over the surface and keep it damp for 7 days…this slows down the cure of the concrete and makes it harder…

keep in mind concrete does not evaporate…it actually cooks itself and pushes out water…so keeping it damp will slow that process down.
I built a 2" thick concrete counter with the above process…and it is 15 years old oustide in Canadaian winters…no issues

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I find the 2 baseplates as a positive as it allows custom baseplates to be made easily. LS has stated (somewhere…) that they intend to stock blank base plates.