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MiniMax Woodworking Equipment
Why is the foundry so important?
Many bullets are made of lead, since it is heavy. But really big bullets are made from depleted uranium, many times as heavy as lead, but still perhaps slightly radioactive. Much of today's iron comes from scrap metal, often from war zones, including equipment destroyed by those big shells. The SCM foundry is state of the art, but unlike many foundries, also checks that incoming scrap doesn't incorporate any scraps of radioactive materials.
For a few years MiniMax equipment was sold under different product lines or brands.
All of these machines have five functions
A list and description of the various machines and specifications is available on the combo machine page.
A list of the various jointer planers, as well as a discussion of Tersa cutters and Mortisers, are available on the Jointer-Planer page.
There is a tutorial (with pictures) on how to use the MiniMax Mortiser that is often part of a combo machine or a jointer planer.
A list of the Sliding Table Saws and Saw-Shaper combination machines is available on the saw page.
I keep planning to create a page on various MiniMax shapers, but it seems unlikely. I have a tilting shaper with sliding table in my combo machine, and a separate Powermatic shaper that I am very pleased with, so am unlikely to explore separate MiniMax shapers for my use. If someone would like to create a summary of the models, etc., I would be glad to incorporate the info here.
I don't know if I will ever get to the lesser used machines, such as line boring machines, construction boring, edge banders, and so forth. Of course if someone contributes the text....
There are links to some training materials, and notes on installation of MiniMax machines in the web page on training
The $175 mobility kit for the bandsaws are widely sold and frequently cursed (see the page on bandsaws). Combo machines and others have mobility kits or some users find generic mobility kits better.
One solution is to get a pallet jack - it has many uses but also requires storage space. Many machines don't have quite enough clearance, but the trick used at trade shows is to put each foot on an piece of 3/4 inch plywood, which raises the machine enough that the pallet jack works fine. There are even fancy pallet jacks that allow you to move the machine in any direction (all wheels swivel) without pulling and pushing into place.
Many MiniMax machines (all the MM bandsaws) have a 12 mm (M12 x 1.75 mm) leveling screw in each corner. One solution is to replace that leveling screw with a caster (available with a 12 mm mounting post - it screws right in). The prime choice is the Zambus brand caster, but you could spend $100 for a set of four. They are highly regarded, and some users say they are worth the price, while other users say the far cheaper version from Great Lakes works just as well. Similar casters work well with other (non-bandsaw) MM machines but you may have to move to a far heavier rated caster, and may have a mounting hole for bolt and nut, rather than a reinforced, threaded 12 mm hole.
The Zambus AC300S casters have a M12 x 1.75 shaft and are rated at 375 pounds each (with uneven floors and uneven load, some casters will need to support more than ¼ of the total machine weight), but this is a popular choice. Some folks recommend going to the Zambus AC600S with double the rating. Some users are happy with a substantially cheaper version of the caster from Great Lakes Casters. Most bandsaw users are happy with the stability when casters are mounted in the holes designed for leveling feet, but a few want a moble base with a larger footprint, and build a wood or metal platform on casters. Most are happy with the additional several inches of working height. Not all the MM equipment have threaded leveling screws ready to receive casters, but I believe all machines at least have a suitable hole where the caster could be bolted in each foot.
Many of the MiniMax user and parts manuals are available on-line. The web site is Parts Pronto (which worried me at first, but it turns out to be the parts distribution portion of SCM North America). You do not have to log in, just select the MiniMax line and you will see the list of manuals available (PDF files you download).
Searching for training items hasn't been productive (did you know there is a MiniMax airplane and a chain of MiniMax convenience stores?), but people occasionally see a useful YouTube video or a relevant book. As I hear of them, I will add links to them on a training page. That page also includes suggestions for installing and connecting your new machine.
I need your help. I am a happy MiniMax user, but not a MiniMax employee, and have not used all the different equipment. I do not have special access to official information. If you have additions or corrections to this information on MiniMax products, especially prices, please share it. Please email your MiniMax info to me.
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