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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
well I did it. I sold my Craftsman monotube at a garage sale. I figured it would push me to make the leap to upgrade. So today I did a little pre purchase shopping.
Nova 1624 being on sale for 949.00 is a 450 saving and it has some good reviews. Then I saw a Shopfox 16-46 new for 700. haven't seen much on these.
I think its lowest speed is 600. The Nova I think 250 rpm.
I also saw a 12 1/2" Delta Midi with variable speed control for the same ball park price.
I appreciate advice as I am relatively new to turning. I am not looking for doing long spindles but would like to do the larger bowls and platters. Both the Nova and Shop fox have swivel heads. I don't remember the delta specs as well.
I am also not planning on doing pens.
Next weekend is The woodworking show here so I hope to do a little more shopping and maybe purchase if there are any good deals to be had.
 

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Not familiar with the shopfox other than they are offbrand copies of Jets I believe. 600 rpm is too fast for larger bowls. you will hurt yourself trying to rough those out.
Nova lathes have an excellent reputation for quality. I have owned 2 myself and highly recommend them.
The Delta 12 1/2" doesn't have a swiveling head so 12" is the bigggest bowl you can get. I currently own one of these and think it's a fabulous lathe. Just not good if you want to do larger than 12" bowls.
I reality larger bowls for me don't sell, require many times the effort to finish and sand, and finding wood that large can be a problem. Consequently probably 98% of the bowls I turn are under 12" The bigger heavier lathes let you spin that size with less effort and I do turn some platters that are over 12" so I do like my Powermatic 3520 but in reality most of what I turn could be done on the Delta.
 

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Spindle turning and bowl turning have very different requirements.

If you are turning spindles, e.g., 3in dia or less, you can start fast.

I recently mounted an oblong shaped burl blank. About 6in x 9in cross section and about 6in deep. Sounds small. I mounted to balance this as best I could. I started at 250 rpm. My lathe can go down to 100 rpm.

I increased the speed slowly, but I started to have the lathe vibrate at about 280 rpm. I may have been able to go a little higher but I know if I had a lathe which started at 700 rpm it would have been a disaster.

I like Grizzly machines, although the Grizzly lathes do not seem to be their strong point. I have a Grizzly 17in bandsaw and would purchase this again.

Swivel head is a mixed blessing. I have this on my NOVA DVR XP. I used the feature and did not appreciate that the head will not return exactly to the same position. Very close, but not exact. The head and tailstocks need to be re-aligned. Not difficult, but a pain. I now try to avoid moving the headstock.

A number of people on the forum have the NOVA 1624 and have been happy. I would go for this lathe with the present Woodcraft sale. A bit more money, but a lot more lathe.
 

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I agree with the others that 600 is probably too fast for larger bowls.

I don’t sell any items but agree with John that large bowls (over 12”) seem to have little appeal. Just check your kitchen cabinets; not many upper cabinets will hold items over 12”. That said, the 16” is good for platters and also allows you to easily turn a 12” or larger bowl. It takes some careful trimming to turn a 12” bowl on a 12.5” lathe.

I have the Nova 1624 and really like it. I swivel the head almost 100% of the time when hollowing a bowl. Going out the 22.5* indent gives you a lot of room when swinging the tool handle without worrying about the tailstock or bed. I have not found aligning the head/tail stocks to be a problem. Just bring two points together and lock the headstock; maybe twenty seconds extra to place a drive spur in the headstock and slide the tailstock. The only time (that I know of) that a slight variation in alignment may matter is when you are drilling. Nova does sell a double ended 2MT tool.

I think you will much happier with a larger lathe like the 1624 over a mini lathe. Even with 8-9” items you have a lot more oomph to power through the cuts.

From all I have heard the Delta is an excellent mini lathe. You may also want to take a look at the Nova Comet2 (2013 edition). The main difference is the Delta is 1 HP and the Nova Comet is 3/4 HP. Speed ranges and most other specs are almost the same. The Comet is available on Amazon for $500.

I also have the Comet2 which I bought for my daughter about a year ago. No problems and runs very quite.

You have to move the belt on the 1624 but… you also have to move the belt on the mini. I never change the belt speed for spindles on my 1624 and at the very most twice for bowls (and usually only once). Even then it only takes a minute to move the belt; it actually takes me longer to move the belt on the Comet than it does on the 1624.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you all for your replies. All good points. I will remove the shop fox from the list and also look at Grizzly just in case. To clarify with regard to the delta it was a midi lathe not mini. I know that the mini wouldn't be enough lathe for what I want to do.
The store I was at yesterday also had the very nice Powermatic and an even nicer oneway but that is past my budget.
As far as selling bowls... Well we will see. My goal for this year was to give away everything I made. We will see what next year brings
 

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I have both the Nova 1624 and the Shopfox 1752. For bowls the Nova hard to beat, changing the belt position is easy/not a problem, haven't had to swivel the head yet--- big stuff doesn't sell well.
The Shopfox (aka Grizzly) is good too, and I'd use it more if I didn't have the Nova. The slowest speed is a mite fast- especially if the blank is not exactly balanced, and as the belt wears, the slow speed creeps upward some.
Recommendation---> Nova.
You can add a ballast shelf, see my thread.
 

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My error in the mini vs midi. The Nova Comet is listed as a midi also. Not sure what size moves a lathe from a mini to midi status.

As far as the swivel head, I use it even with a 6" bowl. I just sold my outrigger because in four + years it only held my knock-out bar.
 

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Im not familiar with the Shop Fox lathe you listed but all the ones at my local WC are granite. I think I would shy away from a granite lathe. The Nova is proven and on sale for a great price!:thumbsup:
 

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My bad---- I have the Shopfox 1758.
Apparently my dyslexic fangers did that.
 

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Here is my two cents. I owned a Nova 1624 so when Delta came out with their midi vs, I knew I had to have one. I sold my Nova and bought the Delta. The Delta was very good and I had no complaints. However, I sure missed my Nova because of it's versatility and the swivel head. I sold my Delta and you guessed it, I bought another Nova 1624.I like the swivel head better than I liked the variable speed because it's easier on my back when bowl turning.This is my reason for owning the Nova and it's also solid and durable. I put mine on casters so I can move it outside from my basement. Sure cuts down on the dust issue. Good luck with your choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Well it turns out a new Nova 16-24 followed me home. I fed it a few blanks and now it won't leave. Thanks to all for the advice. Here is an apple bowl I roughed out. It's still very wet and has so many different grain directions I will be surprised if it survives. I have so much to learn. I'm glad for this forum.
 

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You will be happy with the lathe which followed you home. :yes:

Nice grain in the bowl. I do hope this does not crack when drying. It will look even better when finally turned and finish applied.

Glad the thread has a happy ending. :thumbsup:
 

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Congratulations on your new addition. Is it a boy or girl ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
duncsuss said:
Wait till the first time it throws a blank. I know mine is a boy, because I yelled "You sonofa..." at it (him) :laughing:
So if I yell "you Bi***" instwad I will know it's a girl.
 
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