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Hey Guys I looked on this forum a little and was looking around for a good begineer lathe. I noticed the JWL-1220 mentioned alot, is it worth it? Any other cheaper recomendations or should I just get a well known good brand right away? Also does variable speed really matter?(case its around another $150 more to get)

Thanks:smile:
 

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Trombly, I've only been turning for about 4 months and I chose the Rikon mini. Both the Jet and the Rikon have been well recommended. I haven't had a bit of trouble out of my Rikon. What are you wanting to turn?
 

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I've been recommending both and all of the people who bought them like them. The Rikon only has 1/2hp and the Jet has 3/4. Other than that they are very similar and both companies seem to do a good job of correcting problems.
You can't really buy a full size lathe anywhere near that price that works as well as these things do. They are smooth, quiet, easy to use and everything works well and aligns like it is supposed to.
 

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beginer lathe

Hi an wecome,my 1st lathe was the Ricon,still have it,plus two others.I chose the Ricon because you can turn a 12" bowl over the 10" on the small jet I was looking at,plus it was cheaper in price,not quality.It does only have a 1/2 hp,but I have turned a lot of 11" bowls on it with little problem.I don't have the VS on any of my lathes.I also have a Nova 1624 and can change speeds on either one of them in less than 10 sec.Like said,it may depend on what you plan on turning.I would suggest you get the best you can afford.Just bdon't get one of those after market cheapo's,as they are just not worth it.
 

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I have the Jet 1220vs and just love it. Plenty of power, 12" swing, a little beefier and bigger than a lot of true mini lathes on the market.

I would ABSOLUTELY get the variable speed. People that don't have it say you don't need it, people that have it won't usually live without it. The main reason I like it is for sanding...You need slow rpms and you can get the variable speed model to lower rpms on the lowest belt setting than the non-vs model can get.

Buy as much lathe as you can afford. But also remember that the lathe is about half the cost of the things you'll need to get started right. A chuck, a better drive center and a few good lathe tools will set you back hundreds. Not to mention the money you'll quickly spend on a sharpening setup (a must-have), sandpaper, and finishes.
 

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I second the termite on the variable speed. I didn't have it on my 10" jet, and yes I could move the belt over in about 10-15 seconds. But on my 16" jet, I just turn the knob and set it exactly where I want it instantly without stopping. It doesn't sound like much but it will keep you from getting lazy and not changing the speed for a particular operation that requires it. Not a thing wrong with the Rikon or the Jet. Both have good reputations.
Mike Hawkins;)
 

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i just started turning and i bought the jet 1220. i looked at the rikon also but went for the jet because it was a little stronger and it had a bigger motor. best of luck john:thumbsup:
 

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Hi, Trombly, I have been turning about 2 years. I started doing pens and apent about $5,000.00 on tools and supplies. Many pen kits, pen blanks, a lot of burls(they are $5 each!) I sold to friends and at craft shows. You will soon find that there is allways something that you need. Tools are expensive but worth the price, just get the best, not the mose expensive. But first get a good lathe! I have looked at Penn States Turncrafter Pro. The vs model is $239.00 A very good price. 10" over the bed is plenty of room. It comes highly recommended. That it the one I will buy then I get a new lathe.
 

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I got a call from the frieght folks about an hour ago. My new Griz is being delivered tomorrow afternoon.
 

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John, I expect a review of that new Grizzly lathe before the weekends over. :yes: I would really like to know how you like it.

John
 

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grizzly lathe

thats a nice looking lathe and i agree withe john on the review.
happy turning:thumbsup:!

john
 

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I bought a Steel City about a month and a half ago and i'm using it to turn duck calls and other game calls. After turning a few barrels I noticed there was a difference in the thickness in the barrel. When I aligned the tailstock and headstock and they didn't match up and when you hand spun the headstock it revolved around the tailstock. Needless to say this wasn't acceptable for what I was doing, if you are just turning between centers it may be ok. After talking to Steel City they told me to take it back to Woodcraft, I got to Woodcraft and they had to call Steel City and a lady there told them if I was expecting that kind of accuracy that there lathe wasn't the one ZI needed, so I guess what i'm saying dont buy a Steel City. I upgraded to a Jet mini and love , no problems, wished I had the VS, next one I buy one it will be a VS Jet
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I was thinking Jet 1220 VS or Turncrafter Pro VS.
What tools would you guys recommend? Also anything else?
Thanks
 

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tools depend on what your doing. i have been doing pens and turnigs in the same type of idea and i just use a spindle gouge. i did buy a bowl gouge too. i would say get a roughing gouge and a parting tool as well for a minimum
 

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I went to woodcraft to buy the Jet 1220...ended up coming home with the Rikon. It was about $100 cheaper...and that allowed me to get a chuck. I have been turning with it everyday...have had it for 2 weeks...everything works great, however I did have the indexing gears break off from where there mounted...this happened while I was turning...heard a strange noise...turned off lathe, and checked what I though should be checked...started back up...ran great, til I went to remove chuck...and the indexing pen didnt hold the head stock....pen is fine, but the gears are gone...in the process of getting this resolved.....I will let you know how I like Rikons/woodcrafts customer service soon...;)
 

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That's not a good thing. I have Nova Comet and it uses the index pin to lock the spindle. I questioned them on this and said that it would never break. It hasn't. However they did put a new spindle that had a hex plate added on the new lathes because of customer concern. They sent me one and I replace it but I have never had to use it.
I'm guessing the Rikon parts might be cast instead of turned steel like the Nova.
 

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Another Member said he had the same thing happen...said it was a screw that held the indexing gear on the spindle..said its a easy fix..will attempt it friday
 

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What ever you get I am on board with the variable speed - man it is worth it:thumbsup:

Now you have to make a choice - don't rush - it is your hard earned cash.

Jack
 

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I went to woodcraft to buy the Jet 1220...ended up coming home with the Rikon. It was about $100 cheaper...and that allowed me to get a chuck. I have been turning with it everyday...have had it for 2 weeks...everything works great, however I did have the indexing gears break off from where there mounted...this happened while I was turning...heard a strange noise...turned off lathe, and checked what I though should be checked...started back up...ran great, til I went to remove chuck...and the indexing pen didnt hold the head stock....pen is fine, but the gears are gone...in the process of getting this resolved.....I will let you know how I like Rikons/woodcrafts customer service soon...;)
Got the Rikon back to work...it was the screw that holds the indexing gear...it had came loose.....it won't do that anymore..:smile:
 
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