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This was posted in the MAGazine group, but I think Ruth might get a quicker answer here.

Reposted:

I know price is a big issue...but then the mill also needs to do what i expect it to do. Can a rolling mill also mill wire or is that only the job of the draw plate???
Is it risky buying a used mill? Maybe rollers are rusty or not as smooth as they should be.marked or gouged? .I have never used one myself but am itching to get my hands on one. Does anyone out there have a lonely rolling mill that needs tender loving care, for a reasonable price?

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For rolling wire, you want a mill with grooved rollers – for square, round or half-round wire. Check out the Lacy & Co. website for an idea of what's available www.lacytools.ca

I bought a used Durston rolling mill last year. Durston is an English maker, v. good. There's a Spanish maker, Pepe, which is OK too. There are rolling mill manufacturers in eastern Europe and India, but I don't think the steel quality is as good.

You're right about wanting clean, smooth rollers. Two other "musts": 1) rollers that are calibrated (i.e. parallel to each other, so your metal rolls evenly); 2) a reduction gear (visible as a closed box on the side of the mill) that makes turning the crank easier.

Before I bought, I checked eBay, and Googled local used tool and equipment dealers. Also, check out newspaper ads for auctions of factory contents. You can find bargains there, or make contact with guys who buy and resell used tools and equipment.

In the end, while I've bought other equipment thru eBay, I found my rolling mill thru an ad on a bulletin board at OCAD -- someone getting out of the business.

If you want to buy used, be patient and keep looking. You need to have a clear idea of what condition you are prepared to accept, and how much you are willing to pay. Both of these decisions can be informed by watching on-line auctions to see what stuff sells for, what condition things are generally in, etc.

Hope this helps!

Mary
There is a place in the US called Harbour Freight that sells a Rolling Mill for $189.99, here is the link. The shipping cost is estimated to be approximately $45 to $65.00 and It works out cheaper than the one at Lacy Tools which sells for $550. Check it out.

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=4832

I am too, looking for a rolling mill.  I have looked at Durston and Pepe models.  They do sell an economy mill made in India which has removable rollers for a very economical price but I am skeptical of this model.  If anyone knows where to find a second hand used one in good shape please let me know! 

I checked the Harbour Freight site but found no rolling mill....I searched "mini-rolling mill" and "rolling mill" and "mill"...no luck...maybe they just don;t carry them anymore??

Maybe not.  Shame.  Otto Frei has a used tool section - you might find something there.  Also keep your eye on eBay.

I was just looking at otto frei and found a rolling mill I like (pepe model...which I think is decent???) however they are sold out at the moment so I requested notification when they will have another in stock)

I bought a Pepe recently from Gesswein and it works well (although I never seem to have time to use it).  If you buy it from Gesswein tell them you are a Metal Arts Guild member and you will receive a 10% discount, which adds up to a fair bit on a $500 + item!

If you don't have a Gesswein catalogue you can look at their American website then phone the Canadian location and ask what they have in stock and the price (these are very similar to the U.S. stock and prices).  Ask for Brett Thompson, he's the rolling mill expert and will answer all your questions.

I don't know where you're located but the shipping to downtown Toronto was only $25.

I actually bought one from Rio Grande...a Durston model...the little one (70mm ).  I'll be paying off for the next three months but it will be wirth it.  I am glad I bought a good quality one.  I still haven't got it yet, but I know it has been shipped.  I have bought numerous times from Rio Grande and I am confident it will arrive well.  Thanks for the Gewwein information.  I will definately look at their catalogue.  I am now researching torches.

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