New Lathe Purchase - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 12-12-2008, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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Question New Lathe Purchase

I am new to wood turning. I took a woodturning class a few weeks ago and am hooked. This stuff is more addictive than heroine. After a couple of weeks of going back and forth between wild ideas of building a lathe one minute to having found the deal of the century on a lathe the next, I have come out of it and made a decision. I found a Delta midi w/ bed extension for $280.00. I bought before I had a chance to talk my self out of it. I couldn't decide between a large lathe or mini lathe because I want to turn everything from lightpoles to toothpicks. So before I could change my mind I bought the midi with the idea that I should start small and work my way up. I can still make small bowls (up to 10") and when I am comfortable with that then I can think about buying (or building) a lathe big enough for larger stuff. I just wondered if any of you think I made the right decision , especially on the lathe choice. I have turned on one of these lathes, in the woodturning class I mentioned and it seemed like a good lathe. From the pictures this guy could've sold this thing as new. The paint isn't even wore off the tool rest. Just wondered what you guys thought.
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post #2 of 3 Old 12-12-2008, 09:44 AM
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I think mini lathes are the best way to start. Most projects I see are under 12" and many under that. Even at the national symposium most of the work could be turned on a mini. The best thing is they have really good resale compared to full size lathes. Many people who step up to a full size lathe keep the mini's for turning small stuff. You can turn small stuff on a full size lathe but moving the tool rest and tailstock gets tiring. Good choice, have fun and show us some of your work.
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post #3 of 3 Old 12-12-2008, 04:51 PM
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That's exactly what I did. I bought a jet midi and learned on that and turned a lot of really nice projects on it, including a 24" peppermill (with the bed extension). I bought a jet 1642 and use that pretty much all the time now. But like John said, I kept the midi. The other nice thing about the midi is they don't have an abundance of power to get you in trouble when you make a mistake. Not to say it's impossible to get hurt with it, but if you get a catch, it's a little less violent. Good luck,
Mike Hawkins
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