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Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

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  • Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

    I'm considering building some guide rails for my chainsaw mill instead of buying the expensive Granberg ones. I'm looking for a source of aluminum extrusions... I'd be looking at buying some T-slot or other guide bars, some sort of pieces to join them, etc.

    Can anyone recommend a good place to buy this stuff in the Toronto area, preferably a place where I can feel/hold the stuff and that won't get annoyed by me doing this for a small purchase.

    I have seen the 80/20 stuff but their Ebay store seems cleaned out right now.

    Thanks !
    "I am on a drug. It's called Charlie Sheen"
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  • #2

    Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

    Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

    The big box stores, including Canadian Tire have a small selection of aluminum.

    For a full selection you could try http://www.metalsupermarkets.com/

    If you just need T-slot, Lee Valley has it http://www.leevalley.com/en/wood/pag...455,61995&ap=1

    AK

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    • #3

      Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

      Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

      I like:
      http://www.abilitymetals.com/
      and
      http://www.metalsupermarkets.com/

      Comment


      • #4

        Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

        Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

        Terry, try Metal Supermarkets.............Rod.

        http://www.metalsupermarkets.com/
        Work is the curse of the riding class.

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        • #5

          Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

          Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

          For higher-end stuff, the Bosch Rexroth line is superb. Advanced Motion and Controls has a showroom and I believe a retail front at a couple of locations.

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          • #6

            Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

            Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

            Also try Solway Metals, Dundas West and Bloor.

            http://www.solwaymetal.ca/

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            • #7

              Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

              Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

              Thanks everyone, I've got some shopping to do!

              Arminius, that Bosch stuff does look awesome. I'm going to try and get a quote but I have a feelilng it's way out of my price range. I see that 5.6m of their "PROFILE LF12S" is $604... on clearout ! I have no idea what that profile is, but wow !

              If you have any experience with ballpark pricing, please feel free to PM me. I see they have connectors, etc.
              "I am on a drug. It's called Charlie Sheen"

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              • #8

                Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                There is a phenomenal range of profiles - that particular one is T-shaped with T-type tracks on every surface except the underside of the bars on the T, so definitely overkill. You would use it for making some fairly serious automated controls. Nearly 6m is gigantic.

                I picked up some stock at an industrial auction for basically nothing, and have only ever ordered a few fittings etc. No one has a commerical interest in 5-6 lengths of 2-3 feet, basically offcut, I think I got it for a minimum bid of $5.

                Online catalogue page

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                • #9

                  Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                  Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                  Originally posted by Arminius View Post
                  There is a phenomenal range of profiles - that particular one is T-shaped with T-type tracks on every surface except the underside of the bars on the T, so definitely overkill. You would use it for making some fairly serious automated controls. Nearly 6m is gigantic.
                  I see, you're right - that is way too much. I think ideally I would have t-track on at least 2 adjacent surfaces, and some method to seamlessly join two lengths. I was hoping to buy 4 * 6' lengths so that I could mill up to about 10' but break it down and easily transport it, then some smaller cross- pieces, and some sort of leveling mechanism.

                  Originally posted by Arminius View Post
                  I picked up some stock at an industrial auction for basically nothing, and have only ever ordered a few fittings etc. No one has a commerical interest in 5-6 lengths of 2-3 feet, basically offcut, I think I got it for a minimum bid of $5.
                  Well, if you see another industrial auction with that stuff, please let me know !
                  "I am on a drug. It's called Charlie Sheen"

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                    Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                    I dont know if that bosch strut is "expensive" . Well it is expensive but aluminum is expensive by itself, then add into the mix that is an extrusion, industrial quality and "precision" and the price doesnt seem that bad. http://www13.boschrexroth-us.com/Fra...&subcategory=1 If all you want to make is an "Alaskan Mill" clone then you wont need much more than a length of strut and some connectors and gussets.

                    The entire catalog for the Bosch strut is here , be warned its a very large download http://www.airlinehyd.com/apollo/bos...5.pdf#page=295

                    for just the 30x30x6000mm strut itself, its $85 http://www.plccenter.com/Buy/BOSCH/3842502538

                    The 40x40x6000mm lists for $99 http://www.airlinehyd.com/webpages/orderonline/manufacturersearch.aspx?item_number=3842529340 So all in all its not really that bad IMHO

                    Whether or not Advanced has prices even remotely considered reasonable in light of what the online retailers are asking is another question. I wonder if that $604 isnt for some sort of assembly and not just the strut itself? It appears to be a complete linear guide assembly complete with trolley. Perhaps a couple lengths of strut with cross connectors as a base frame, then add the available trolley wheels (not an assembly, see attachment) that would ride in the strut to which you could add an assembly made out of strut that would act as a saw holder would be a cheaper alternative sort of like Tims #2 post in your other thread. If you look in the catalog im sure you might find something cheaper than the complete linear guide assby with trolley although im pretty sure it would work sawdust getting down into the guide mechanism itself would be a concern.

                    All that said, i know id be building myself a computer work station out of it if i had a reasonable priced source available. It would be pretty awesome to adapt one of the "assembly workstation" examples in the catalog to a home computer workstation.
                    Attached Files
                    Last edited by scooby074; 11-11-2011, 04:20 AM.

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                    • #11

                      Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                      Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                      Have you given any thought to "uni-strut"..?

                      http://www.unistrut.us/index.php?WP=...isplay&P=po_mf

                      Now it's no where near the bosch-rexroth product, but we are talking and a rough cut chainsaw mill here....right?

                      I know you spend a far amount of time north of Barrie, so if you're just looking for small lengths of steel/aluminum, you can stop by Barrie Metals. They have a retail desk, and almost get excited if you want to haggle their prices.

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                      • #12

                        Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                        Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                        Uni-strut is great stuff but it is heavy steel only and probably way over kill. More-so, it is only for structural struts to mount conduit and other things on, usually on a wall or electrical ladders etc. not for framework contraptions if the latter is what you want. 80/20's slogan "The Industrial Erector Set," says it all

                        I have seen the 80/20 stuff but their Ebay store seems cleaned out right now.
                        80/20 dealers to my experience have no min order. Yesterday I ordered just two pieces of extrusion 36" long. Last week I ordered 2 dozen button head screws and nuts.

                        Via E-Bay you get a hodge podge of whatever scraps, mis-cuts, etc. that they are trying to unload and the bidding basis is a hit and mis affair. You probably would be better off just calling a local 80/20 rep. OH, I also discovered that all local 80/20 dealers are not alike. They set the minimum order - or none - and their enthusiasm for your small order varies. They don't have manuf. requirements as to service. I have two dealers 30 min. from me who don't want to be bothered. and found a wonderful 80.20 woman/family owned dealer in San Diego (450 miles away) who is glad to receive my order. Shipping rates out of Indiana anyway, unless local dealer has it in stock.
                        Last edited by Woodwreck; 11-11-2011, 06:35 AM. Reason: structural changes :)

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                        • #13

                          Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                          Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                          Originally posted by scooby074 View Post
                          I dont know if that bosch strut is "expensive" . Well it is expensive but aluminum is expensive by itself, then add into the mix that is an extrusion, industrial quality and "precision" and the price doesnt seem that bad. http://www13.boschrexroth-us.com/Fra...&subcategory=1 If all you want to make is an "Alaskan Mill" clone then you wont need much more than a length of strut and some connectors and gussets.
                          You're right. I'm judging expensive by comparing to the granberg rails which go for $200 for two 9' struts. Unfortunately, I talked to one dealer who said shipping it costs "a ton" since apparently it ships in the 9' length... so i started thinking about sourcing parts locally and perhaps building the longer rails out of shorter ones. Once I saw the 80/20 catalog and the Bosch stuff, your imagination tends to run wild. Indeed, I started thinking about building a frame that sits to one side of the log, supports the saw and rides on rollers... kind of like the Logosol design. I started getting carried away.

                          Originally posted by J. Vibert View Post
                          Have you given any thought to "uni-strut"..?

                          ..
                          Now it's no where near the bosch-rexroth product, but we are talking and a rough cut chainsaw mill here....right?
                          Correct, we're talking about a rough cut mill and I definitely don't need a product as refined as the Bosch.

                          Originally posted by J. Vibert View Post
                          I know you spend a far amount of time north of Barrie, so if you're just looking for small lengths of steel/aluminum, you can stop by Barrie Metals. They have a retail desk, and almost get excited if you want to haggle their prices.
                          If they're open on Saturdays, I will go there tomorrow !!! What are the chances... their website doesn't say their hours.

                          Originally posted by Woodwreck View Post
                          Shipping rates out of Indiana anyway, unless local dealer has it in stock.
                          Right, which could be a killer both in terms of cost and lead time. I guess I will look for a local dealer. I expect that the parts I am looking for are not too uncommon.

                          thanks everyone !!
                          terry
                          "I am on a drug. It's called Charlie Sheen"

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                          • #14

                            Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                            Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                            http://www.princessauto.com/workshop...minum/list-all They have some stores in Ontario. You'll have to look at their list .
                            In an age when scientists are creating artificial intelligence, too many of our educational institutions seem to be creating artificial stupidity. - Thomas Sowell

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                            • #15

                              Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                              Re: Where to buy small quantities of aluminum extrusion ?

                              Your OP speaks of small items etc., how did you get into the 9' length concept?

                              I at least, have no idea of what you are making, but the "costing a ton" is because anything over 6' forces it to freight carrier from UPS or equivalent, but of course this stuff is also heavy. Can you use two smaller pieces joined in some fashion. But, steel is no different, and still is a major headache unless you have welding and related services available.

                              Have you checked the 80.20 seven or so pamphlets shown in the first 18 pages of the paper catalog which is on the 80/20.net, showing numerous examples of projects people have built using the product/ Some are awful () but there are numerous ideas there. Also look at the references to design support.

                              I have built a Festool MFT imitation for a fraction of the cost (yea, weight is a nusiance) and several other things and love working with the erector set idea. Stick with it. I guy on FOG posted cabinets referring to BOSCH but thats another layer of supplier; stay with 80/20 IMHO - good luck Let us know how it comes out!
                              WW

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