Help: Lathe (What and Where to buy?)
  Re: Help: Lathe (What and Where to buy?) by themoon (I finally got "permi...)
(07-15-2020, 01:12 PM)themoon Wrote: I finally got "permission" to buy a lathe. I've been wanting one for years. I'm not looking for anything extravagant, just something that can turn spindles, table legs, knobs, small stuff like that. I don't have any tools that go along with it so that would have to factor in to the cost.

I'm hoping to keep this under $1500. (Total for everything)

My first stop for a first lathe would be Craigslist.  

There's a couple of nice ones on there right now

this is an beast of a lathe!

I started on one like this one

have fun!!

Be careful -- it's addictive Wink
"Truth is a highway leading to freedom"  --Kris Kristofferson

Wild Turkey
We may see the writing on the wall, but all we do is criticize the handwriting.
(joined 10/1999)
  Re: Help: Lathe (What and Where to buy?) by themoon (I finally got "permi...)
Just a few thoughts...

If you go with carbide tipped tools (e.g. EZ Wood Tools) you don't need a grinder or sharpening jig. Carbide tipped tools are easier to use for a beginner and will last longer before you need to rotate the cutting head or replace it.

In my opinion, a chuck is essential. You can get by with the spur centers and live center, but you can't do bowls that way. If you have any intentions of upgrading to a larger lathe in the future, Nova chucks have mostly interchangeable jaws, so you can move the same jaws to a larger chuck.

You really don't need a set of 8 turning tools. Basic tools to have are: roughing gouge, parting tool, spindle tool, and maybe a skew. You don't need a bowl gouge for spindle work. You don't even need a scraper. Sandpaper can be your friend for many shaping operations if it's just spindle work.

Get some high quality sandpaper as well. I like the strips in the box that has multiple grits. You dispense a little like tape or aluminum foil. You can tear your own sheets from 8x10 sheets of sandpaper, but the box sets are cheap. Klingspor is a good brand. Consider a dust collection shield for sanding operations. Otherwise, you'll coat your shop with wood dust.

If you're doing pens, watch a couple of videos before buying. The array of accessories for pen making can be bewildering.

Finally, get a face shield that's rated for impact resistance. Some of the cheap ones at the Home Center won't protect you very well if a high velocity chunk of wood gets tossed in the direction of your face. Also get N95 (particulate) dust masks for sanding.

Other useful, but not essential tools:
Measuring tools like turning calipers, center finder, depth gauge.
You can use your lathe to drill into your workpiece. They make drill bit chucks that fit the Morris taper of your lathe (usually MT2, but check your particular brand). If aligned properly, drilling using the lathe ensures the hold is centered (pens, pepper mills, and the like).

Visit a turning related store's website (Craft Supplies USA or Penn State) and you can browse the tools. They often have publications of recommended tools as well.
Still Learning,

Allan Hill

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