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Author Topic: Changing Machines, loves and regrets  (Read 1802 times)

Dihusky

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Changing Machines, loves and regrets
« on: October 31, 2019, 05:51:05 PM »
I recently made a decision I am regretting, but can't turn back the clock!

My faceting life started on an Imahashi, which I enjoyed, but found the lack on 1/10th of a degree frustrating when exploring many of the awesome gem designs. I was luck enough to come across a Hall 2000 with the extended rotary protractor, gave is a service and fell in love.

During this time I also came across a Hall Xtra for my wife, same treatment.. a good service and off she went, only to enter a world of frustration, she wears bi-focals so struggled with the protractor and her faceting skills went backwards so something had to change.

Anyway a VJ came up, turned out to be one of the old Thompson VJs, so solid and accurate. It also received a service and new 12v motor and off we both went. Wife was back on track with the 2000 and loving the machine, we'd sold the Hall Xtra so no going back.

Myself though, I'm struggling with the VJ, particularly being able to see the facet I'm  working on. Sure the machine is accurate and the hard stop is nice, but the ergonomics are killing me! With a well worn 66 yr old body, manipulating myself into position to see what I'm doing is getting beyond a joke, but taking the 2000 of my wife... couldn't do that to her!

So where to from here,.. love to have another 2000 with the rotary protractor but it's like finding a needle in a haystack, maybe a Scintillator 88 or an Ultra-Tec, probably need to see and try one first, and new with the state of the $AUS is not an option, I don't have $9k to spare anyway!

What other options do I have... Facetron... nah, Gemmasta.. used a GF4 and they're ok but not super accurate, plus a used on could easily have the mast out of alignment. What are my options, any ideas???

Bucket

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Re: Changing Machines, loves and regrets
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2019, 06:44:55 PM »
Personally I use a Facetron which I bought new a few years ago. Great machine but if you didn't like not having a 1/10th of degree on the Imahashi, you'll be in the same boat with the Facetron, although you can approximate it fairly accurately. Not sure where you'll need to go other than the VJ. I've only used older Gemmastas so I think their nice solid machines but not quite up to the Facetron.
Common sense isn't exactly common

scratchie

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Re: Changing Machines, loves and regrets
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2019, 01:54:51 PM »
Dihusky ,
I know exactly what you mean as my 86 year old body has difficulty seeing the facets , particularly at lower cutting angles - the stone is way up in the air !!
I have mounted the VJ on a lower than usual bench and use a draughtsman's chair with a long range of movement , so that at some angles I have the seat as low as possible and at the high viewing ranges I raise the chair as high as possible and rest my feet on the chair's footrest.[size=78%] [/size]
[/size]When cutting the table I view it by turning the index wheel 180 degrees and lower the quill - don't forget to go back to the original index setting before proceeding. I used to stand when cutting the table but find changing the index is easier !![size=78%]
[/size]Other suggestions from VJ users always welcome.[size=78%]
[/size]John[size=78%]

Ghost

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Re: Changing Machines, loves and regrets
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2019, 05:00:35 PM »
On my Little Jewell (1970's) the index gear would hit the protractor if you tried to raise the hand-piece above about 45 degrees!   I was forever spinning to the opposite index to examine facets.
My Hall X-Tra is sooo much nicer.   Using both the protractor and dial gauge you can supposedly set it to .01 degrees (That is provided you are sufficiently accurate in setting the base whole degree!).
Electronic protractors are probably the way of the future.   However lap wear and unevenness, uneven hand pressure, mast and hand-piece flex, lap run-out, etc., means that using you eyes to bring in meets sends the hundredth's and even the tenth's of a degree out the window anyway.
Just my humble opinion.
Regards,
Ghost

Giel

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Re: Changing Machines, loves and regrets
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2019, 06:44:40 PM »
Ergonomics are hardly ever talked about in faceting machine reviews!
I don't want to break my back bending over the machine to inspect the stone I am cutting. (I'm a big man)
This is exactly why I ordered the Scintillator 88. The distance from the dopped stone to the pivot point of the dop arm is much longer than with other machines.
When you take the dop arm of the lap, turn it upward to inspect the stone, you dont have to bend over the machine as much, because the stone moves upward quite a bit.

MakkyBrown

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Re: Changing Machines, loves and regrets
« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2019, 06:51:03 PM »
Ergonomics are hardly ever talked about in faceting machine reviews!
I don't want to break my back bending over the machine to inspect the stone I am cutting. (I'm a big man)
This is exactly why I ordered the Scintillator 88. The distance from the dopped stone to the pivot point of the dop arm is much longer than with other machines.
When you take the dop arm of the lap, turn it upward to inspect the stone, you dont have to bend over the machine as much, because the stone moves upward quite a bit.
I agree. I find it also helps to rest my elbows on something to take the load off my shoulders. Especially the arm that moves the stone back/forward across the lap. Especially us bigger blokes with heavy arms not good for shoulders faceting.

 

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