New full size wood lathe - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
  • 1 Post By Catpower
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post #1 of 9 Old 12-08-2017, 11:31 AM Thread Starter
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New full size wood lathe

Hello. I am new to the forum and new to wood turning. I started turning on an old craftsman wood lathe bolted to a work bench and I got hooked. I know this topic has been discussed many times but I just want to see if anyone has any more info for my particular needs. So I started looking at the $600 Grizzly lathe and the Nova 1624 lathe that was at woodcraft for $849. I went into woodcraft to check them out and I fell in love with the full size lathes with variable speed. I am the type of person who would rather buy the better tool now, then start cheap and have to upgrade again. I have no issue dropping $2500 on a new lathe. I would love a powematic or robust but cant swing that much $$. I already have a bunch of nova chucks and tools. I am currently looking at the Laguna Revo $2399, Jet 1640 EVS $2550 , and the Grizzly modeles G0766 and 733 $1700. I really like the Laguna, only downfalls I saw was a 1 year warranty as compared to 5 years on the jet, head stock doesnt rotate (not a big deal) and some bad reviews on support. I can run 110 or 220 so that isnt an issue. I plan on turning bowls, platters, and smaller stuff, not really planning on spindles so a really long length does not matter. I want a heavy sold unit, that I can put in place and turn and not worry about. I know anything will be 1000 times better than what I am using now, but want to make a good decision on a lathe that will do what I want for many years.
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post #2 of 9 Old 12-08-2017, 02:09 PM
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I have a Grizzly G0766, and couldn't be happier, runs smooth as silk, but if they would have had the big 24x48 I could have opted for it, just because of the extra capacity, but it came out after I got mine, although I have only maxed out the 766 a couple times and did a perfectly good job
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post #3 of 9 Old 12-08-2017, 08:14 PM
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I myself am currently looking at the NOVA 1624, in my opinion a few pros and cons on the NOVA and lathes in general. I have been researching the electronic DVR variable speed control on the NOVA lathes and there seems to be a good of bad reviews or problems with this controller on what seems all of the DVR controllers. If you are looking at the DVR I would do a little more research on this issue.

This is just my personal opinion but I know a lot of turners don't care for a swiveling head stock but I think I would like for the simple fact of not having to lean or work over the bed so much to turn the inside of the bowl. I am also left handed so that may make me see things or make things easier for me.

As I mentioned being left handed, with the reverse feature (I'm not concerned at all about sanding in reverse) but I could swing the head stock out 20 or 30 degrees, put it in reverse and turn the inside on the opposite side as normal.

The only down fall to a swiveling head stock that I'm aware of is realigning the head stock to the tail stock when you turn the head stock back around.

I know some of things are features that I have looked at and would be easier for leftys but just just thought I would bring them to your attention because you may see these features useful to you also but for different reasons
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post #4 of 9 Old 12-08-2017, 09:55 PM
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Instead of buying new you might look for a old lathe. Usually an old lathe has a lot of cast iron in it and weight helps a lot when turning wood. The heavier the lathe the less vibration you get. In any case you can usually get more machine for the buck by buying used equipment.
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post #5 of 9 Old 12-09-2017, 07:26 AM
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I have two cheap harbor freight lathes, exactly the same set up next to each other. Plus a mini turn crafter on a bench in the same area and an ancient Powrcraft . I am doing almost all spindle turning at this point. I really like having one lathe set up for turning between centers and the other set up with a chuck. I can easily move from one lathe to the other, rather than flipping the centers and chucks around on a single lathe for different operations. Rough it out and cut tennons on one lathe and move to the next. The power craft is set up simply for mounting work between centers to paint there is no motor. I just turn the lathe by hand while holding the brush up to the work as it slowly turns. I get much better and more even brush strokes this way.

I have been looking for a larger lathe, but right now, having two the same makes for easy transition from one to the other. For turning bowls the duplicity does not make much sense you are removing the face plates and installing in chucks anyway.
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post #6 of 9 Old 12-10-2017, 10:33 AM
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just my 2 cents

I started with the Nova Mercury mini (now no longer made), General Int.14", Nova 1624, Nova DVR up-grade, and I now have a Grizzly G0766, and couldn't be happier. At 3hp and a swing of 22" this is my lathe for a lifetime. I also have an assortment of Nova chucks and adaptors/jaws.
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post #7 of 9 Old 12-11-2017, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by CDP View Post
.... The only down fall to a swiveling head stock that I'm aware of is realigning the head stock to the tail stock when you turn the head stock back around....
I started out with a lathe that has a swiveling headstock, the Delta 46-715. While it seemed like a great idea, it really isn't in my personal experience. The problem that you mentioned, in my opinion, is a major drawback because it takes considerable effort to get it lined up with the tailstock which is an important consideration when turning between centers where the headstock end is being held rigidly (peppermills, pens, bottle stoppers, etc.). There is another issue that is even more of a problem when the headstock is swiveled off to the side ... the need for a dogleg between the banjo and the tool rest means that the tool rest is not nearly as rigid as when it is directly fixed to the banjo. A lathe with a sliding headstock makes much more sense. You can slide the headstock down to the end of the lathe, remove the etailstock and then you have all the maneuvering room that you need whether right or left handed.

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post #8 of 9 Old 12-11-2017, 08:47 PM
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Thank you Bill, now that you mention it I have heard of people breaking doglegs because of not enough support and the extra leverage added to the tool rest.
I will have to look at my options again
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post #9 of 9 Old 12-12-2017, 09:00 AM
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I have no issue dropping $2500 on a new lathe.
I don't either, but SWMBO might raise the roof if I bought one. Lots to consider here for buying a lathe.

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