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Author Topic: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine  (Read 964 times)

Zak

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Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« on: November 28, 2019, 09:56:19 PM »
Hi guys

Was just wanting some advice on buying my first faceting machine! Have been looking around everywhere and have come across all sorts of machines.

I would really like to know what to look for in a machine and were to buy one. I have seen quite a few on the forum as well as all around eBay and gumtree. As i am a beginner i am obviously not looking to spend massive amounts of money. Any advice would be great!

 I have all so come across the some what cheep Chinese machines on Ebay and would really appreciate any information or experience had with these machines. Or if they are any good or not.

Have some faceting experience through my local regions Lapidary club. Wanting to buy my own machine as it is to expensive to continue driving the 1hr and a half to go to the club  :(

Any information that  could be passed on would be greatly appreciated  :D

Cheers Zak


 
« Last Edit: November 28, 2019, 10:53:03 PM by Zak »

Faceting Frank

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2019, 09:20:45 AM »
Looked at those machines from China on eBay Zak. Their rubbish don’t buy one, they don’t even use bearings where the quill pivots up and down. Just a slot for the quill base shaft to drop into.
A second hand Gemmasta, Hall Xtra, Patriot, all good machines well suited for a beginner. I know it’s impossible to tell the condition on eBay, just have to talk to the owner before making a decision. Also your looking for plenty of accessories, can get expensive buying Batt laps etc.
Frank.

scratchie

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2019, 05:19:32 PM »
Zak,
Does your Lapidary Club have any machines ? Most likely they may have Gemmasta or Hall machines. Ask senior Club members what they have themselves and are they happy with them.
A well cared for Hall or Gemmasta machine is a good starting point as there have been plenty made and they've been made in Australia so there is a lot of local knowledge about the use and maintenance of them.
John

Dihusky

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2019, 04:41:48 PM »
Good comments so far, stay away from any of the Chinese machines, have seen a couple and they are garbage.

I would agree with Frank & Scratchie, Hall or Gemmasta would be the safest starting point, if you can find a Gemmasta GF4 or a Hall Mk5 or 2000 you're going to be onto a good machine, well known and easy to service. Also if you decide Faceting is not for you, there will be no problem selling the machine.

Faceting machines... you get what you pay for, if it's cheap you're going to be starting with problems for which you might not understand the causes. Often easily fixed, but can turn you off real fast when you can't line up facets and you're constantly cheating to polish.

If you do find a machine and are having problems, there are plenty of folks here who can help you with what might be going wrong.

Good luck with your hunt.

Prooz

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2019, 10:58:05 PM »
I haven't been in the hobby for very long. Was lucky enough to find a Hall mark 3, an oldie but has got me started, and enjoy using it.

Rusted

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2019, 08:27:00 AM »
Good machines hold their value really well. So though several thousand dollars looks a lot consider it an investment that you will get a lot of pleasure from and if you decide that it's really not your thing will be easily able to sell it for similar money.

MakkyBrown

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2019, 10:45:03 AM »
I'd add Facetron, Ultratec, VJ, and Polymetric to that list. All very good machines and well worth buying.

Giel

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2019, 07:46:48 PM »
Quote
As i am a beginner i am obviously not looking to spend massive amounts of money. Any advice would be great!

Have a look at the sterling faceting machines from sri lanka, they are pretty affordable compared to other machines.
It's a handpiece/platform machine instead of a mast type machine. I have never used one but customers seem to be pretty happy with them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sb_1bHKLpiY&list=PLSKAi6gpaAXW2kVeCiqc6sILG1YvKU2wE&index=2

As others said you can also buy a second hand machine. You have to be lucky with them as they can be quite abused by their previous owner. Often you have to buy some new bearings or other parts. If you know a good machinist who can help you get it back into great condition that's a good option.


slomoshun

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2019, 10:53:39 AM »
FWIW:
My first faceting machine was a platform design.  The ability to lift the handpiece and closely examine the cut was appreciated.  It became clear why platforms are popular in production mills.  As I discovered, though, it was also necessary because obtaining meet points with such a machine required frequent adjustments and fiddling.  Initially the routine was fun, but it evolved into a frustrating hassle which prompted me to change to a second-hand mast machine.  The purchase cost and calibration check were spendy but quickly forgotten after seeing the results.

Giel

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Re: Advice wanted on buying my first faceting machine
« Reply #9 on: December 03, 2019, 03:27:53 AM »
Quote
My first faceting machine was a platform design.  The ability to lift the handpiece and closely examine the cut was appreciated.  It became clear why platforms are popular in production mills.  As I discovered, though, it was also necessary because obtaining meet points with such a machine required frequent adjustments and fiddling.  Initially the routine was fun, but it evolved into a frustrating hassle which prompted me to change to a second-hand mast machine.  The purchase cost and calibration check were spendy but quickly forgotten after seeing the results.

I totally get your point, I just thought the sterling machines were good in terms of affordability.
I started cutting with a second hand mast machine, and I have always had to compensate for the inacuracy of the machine when cutting a stone. Tried to rebuild and inprove it many times, but it had just been abused to much by the former owner. So I promised myself to never buy a second hand machine again!!!
Thats why I said you have to be lucky with a second hand machine.
I ordered a new mast machine a while ago. ;)


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