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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Finally have my $2,000 saved to get a new full size Nova lathe, then a minor catastrophe stuck, so yesterday I had to go out a buy a new $200 (with coupon) Harbor Freight lathe to get me by for a couple of months till I save up enough again. I think I remember reading here that the Harbor Freight lathe wasn't too bad for small items if you are careful changing the variable speeds and also if you replace the original drive belt, but I also remember something about lubrication...that is the one thing I don't 100% recall the particulars on. If anyone remembers, or if you have the lathe and can give me some useful information about lubrication (what to lubricate), I would really appreciate it because I have to get half a dozen bottle stoppers out and my 1972 Sears lathe is finally dead. Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Bandman
 

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Which lathe? HF sells several.
 

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I hope the one you spent $200 on is the 12" x 33" model 34076 (all the other wood lathes should have been cheaper than that.)

I still have this lathe, even though I bought a Nova 1624 a year ago.

Once I got one where the points of the dead center (drive spur) in the headstock and the live center (in the tailstock) aligned properly, it worked fine. I didn't have to lubricate anything or change any belts.

Changing speed isn't tricky -- you just have to do it while the motor is running, and do it deliberately but not too hasty. I quickly learned to always return the handle to the slowest speed setting before stopping the lathe. (Maybe it was easier for me because I learned to drive a car with a manual gear box.)

Safe turning!
 

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I also own the HF lathe with the reeves drive. The drive finally died so I converted to a 4 speed manual. Be easy with the drive and you'll be alright for a while. I don't have the size of the belt I switched to but it came from NAPA and does make a difference. If I remember tomorrow I'll try to look at it and find out. Keep the drive clean they like to seize over the keyway. Mine was so bad that when I did go to take it apart I had to beat the h377 out of it. There a fairly decent lathe especially for the price just keep an eye on the reeves drive.
 

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I've had my HF 12 33 for going on 5 years now and still working
fine lube the reeves drive with spray dry graphite lube twice
a year , replaced the belt once after 2 years it's been a
very good lathe:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Neew Lathe

Thanks to all who so quickly came to my aid. I got the 12x33 machine and hope to get it assembled this week. I learned on my 1972 mono-rail Craftsman so didn't really know how bad it was until I started getting into turning a little more during that past couple of years. Am sure ANYTHING would be an improvement over what I have been used to using.

Bandman
 

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I also forgot to mention, weigh it down or screw it down if possible. The legs are lite weight and it'll bounce around even with medium size turnings. The unit itself is built heavy it's the legs that are too lite.
 

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I too have this lathe....and also agree with previous post to change that belt...Napa 3L240W it makes all the difference..havent had any problems with the lathe dancing around...as long as piece is centered it usually doesnt wobble..i have had this lathe for about a year now....only issue i have had is with spur drive and such getting stuck...but all in all...i have been pleased.
 

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I had trouble with the headstock tilting back on mine....this is common with this lathe. I just used all thread and a 1/4 steel plate on top and bottom and clamped the headstock down..lines up great now.

Also had problems with it throwing a surge protector...until i discovered the surge protector wasnt tough enough to handle the current going through it.
 
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