Midas Pre-Purchase FAQ

What is the difference between the Midas and Granite Machines?

Both the Midas and the Granite are combo lathe-mill-drills can accomplish your machining needs. When selecting a machine, you should consider, what you will be machining and what sort of travels you will need, your budget, and what convenience features and accuracy you require. The charts below give you a quick comparison between the models.

Machining Capacity Considerations
ModelLathe Work EnvelopeMill Work Envelope*Lathe Facing CapacitySpindle Bore
GN-1340 IMX35" x 7-5/8"13-1/2" x 7-5/8" x 13-3/8"13"1.125"
GN-1324 IMX20" x 7-5/8"13-1/2" x 7-5/8" x 13-3/8"13"1.125"
GN-1340 MX35" x 7-5/8"13-1/2" x 7-5/8" x 13-3/8"13"1.125"
GN-1324 MX20" x 7-5/8"13-1/2" x 7-5/8" x 13-3/8"13"1.125"
GN-134035" x 7-5/8"9-1/2" x 7-5/8" x 13-3/8"13"1.125"
GN-132420" x 7-5/8"9-1/2" x 7-5/8" x 13-3/8"13"1.125"
MI-1220 LTD14" x 8-1/2"12-1/16" x 8-1/2" x 13"12"1.08"
MI-1220 XL15" x 7-5/8"6-5/8" x 7-/3/8" x 13"12"1.08"
ModelPowerfeed X Axis Lathe MillPowerfeed Y Axis Lathe MillQuick Change Gear BoxThreading Dial & Half NutMotor Drive System
GN-1340 IMXYesYesYesYesYesYes220 V Brushless DC 2 HP (Variable Speed)
GN-1324 IMXYesYesYesYesYesYes220 V Brushless DC 2 HP (Variable Speed)
GN-1340 MXYesYesYesYesYesYes110 V Brushless DC 2 HP (Variable Speed)
GN-1324 MXYesYesYesYesYesYes110 V Brushless DC 2 HP (Variable Speed)
GN-1340YesYesYesYesYesYes110 V DC 1.5 HP (Variable Speed)
GN-1324YesYesYesYesYesYes110 V DC 1.5 HP (Variable Speed)
MI-1220 LTDYesYesYesYesNoYes110 VAC 3/4" hp (Lathe & Mill)
MI-1220 XLYesNoNoNoNoHalf Nut-YesTreading Dial-Optional110 VAC 3/4" hp
All Granite machines have the R-8 Bridgeport standard mill spindle and a D1-4 lathe spindle nose. All Midas machines have a MT3 mill spindle and a bolt on style lathe spindle nose.

What sort of tolerance can I expect from these machines?

You can expect to hold tolerances of between 0.001" and 0.002" with our Midas machines.

What are the machine weights and dimensions? Will they fit in a standard 8' pick-up bed?

Yes, all combo lathe-mill-drills fit into a standard 8" pick-up bed. If you order a stand with your shipment the stand is shipped "assembly required" in order to avoid damage and to better accommodate space restrictions at the time of pick-up or delivery.

The following chart summarizes the machines shipping dimensions and weights.

ModelCrate SizeWeight
MI-1220 LTD44-3/4" x 22-3/4' x 38"620 lbs
MI-1220 XL43-1/2" x 22-1/2" x 36-1/4"530 lbs
80-045 Stand for all Midas and Granite 1324 machines56" x 22" x 13"150 lbs

What are the power requirements for the machines? What amp service is required?

All Smithy Midas Combo Lathe-Mill-Drills run on single phase power and plug into a standard 110 outlet.   All midas motors are rated a 16 amps. Smithy recommends a dedicated 20 amp breaker.

Does your machine have the hole through the center of the spindle and what size is it?

Yes, all our machines have a hole through the center for passing stock though. Our Midas machines has a 1.08."

How much space do I need to accommodate the machine?

Take a look at the foot print specification on the machine you are interested in. This specification gives you a working footprint, taking into consideration having the pulley box door opened and tables at their full travel and about 18" from the wall to be able to access the oil port and motor.

Are the dials in inch or metric?


What is included in the machine tool package that comes with the machine?

Smithy machines are shipped with tools that allow you to do basic milling and turning from day. A listing of the tools are including on the pricing page for each machine.

What are the differences between the Midas  MI-1220 XL and MI-1220 LTD?

The chart below summarizes the differences.
ModelMill Spindle Center to Lathe Chuck DistantDual MotorsPowerfeedsHalf NutThreading DialQuick Release Belt Tensioner
ModelMill Spindle Center to Lathe Chuck DistantDual MotorsPowerfeedsHalf NutThreading DialQuick Release Belt Tensioner
MI-1220 LTD8-3/4"YesLathe & Mill- X & Y AxisYesYesYes
MI-1220 XL3-3/16"NoLathe-X AxisYesNo-Optional AvailableYes

Does the LTD have a lower feed rate than the XL?

Yes, additional gear reduction in the apron decrease the feed rate.

What is the advantage of having a half nut and how does it help with the operation?

The half nut can be disengaged from the leadscrew allowing the carriage to slide by hand very quickly. You can also stop the feed instantly when it is disengaged on machines with theading dial. The feed can be disengaged to pick back up at the same point for faster pastes.

What’s the advantage of the deeper throat on the Midas LTD mill head?

The larger milling depth of the Midas LTD allows you to reach out further. It’s most obvious advantage is that it will give you a bigger working area. The deeper throat on the mill column is also an advantage when working on smaller parts because you don’t have to go through the trouble of removing the lathe chuck and still have room to work with the mill.

Why is Midas 1220 XL more expensive than Midas 1220?

Smithy believes that machining is a way to get things done. Not everybody can afford top of the line with all the bells and whistle. The Midas 1220 is an entry level machine which allows you to get into the hobby without breaking your budget. Chances are if you go to Midas 1220 and decided if you really want to be a home machinist or pursue a home based business, you'll to upgrade to Midas 1220 XL or 1220 LTD or one of our Granite models. But a lot of people want to see if they like it first. The MI-1220 is a great way to get "get your feet wet".

The main differences between the Midas 1220 and Midas 1220 XL are: the table size, quick change belt tensioner and half nut engagement. The table size of the MI-1220 XL is about twice as the table on the Midas 1220. The extra table size gives you extended capacity for larger milling projects or multiple set-ups for smaller projects. In addition with that it has a quick change belt tensioner allows an quicker and easier speed change. . The 1220 XL has a half nut allows you to reposition the carriage much easier than the 1220 alone. If you want to reposition the 1220 there’s a handle at the end that you need to crack until your are in the desired position. Ultimately, the 1220 XL will save you time and in a business environment, time is money.

What stand or table do you offer for the Midas machines?

The Smithy Custom Built stand, 80-045, is used for all machines in the Midas series. It features a build in ship tray, 5 ball bearing slide drawers, and two shelves.

Are the Midas machines CNC compatible?

Not “out of the box” like the Granite machines. But people have converted them. This was done, however, strictly on their own. You are certainly welcome to adapt your Midas machine to CNC but we will not support the machine assembly or warranty for CNC.

Can I use my Midas machine for gunsmithing?

Yes, we have many gunsmiths who are using our machines. Many hobbyist gunsmiths use the Midas machines because of the lower cost and they don’t need the extra time saving and convenience that come with the extra features on the Granite machine. Commercial gunsmiths are more likely to go for the Granite machine. Before you decide to use the Midas for gunsmithing you need to consider the tolerances you require. You need to determine if the 1 to 2 thousands tolerance on the Midas machines is adequate for the work you want to do. Some custom gun work may require higher tolerances. You just need to understand what you can expect to get from the Midas machine. Higher tolerance work or larger/longer workpieces may require that you go to the Granite machine or dedicated machines.

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