Reply by David Kirtley

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Posted on Rikon vs. Central Machinery Mini Lathe

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David Kirtley

1286 posts in 2960 days

#1 posted 06-07-2012 06:51 PM

I would not really go for either of these. Variable speed is the way to go. Belt changes are a pain.

Spindle locks are nice as are indexing but there are multiple ways to do that and I can’t say I would be too excited about 12 position index.

Not considering price, I would say the Rikon has a bit of an edge (especially if it is the one that you can get a bed extension.) Also the MT2 tailstock has more variety of tooling.

I agree with Bert that the other lathe is much more lathe than either of these two. I have one and it is actually a nice lathe. You would have to get a much more expensive lathe before you got something better. If you don’t like HF, several other vendors carry the same lathe. Of course the one from Jet costs around $900 and the Grizzly is $600. They both have upgraded features but nothing that I would pay the price difference for.

Think long and hard because you can turn short stuff on a long bed but you can’t turn long stuff on a short one. The midi an mini lathe sizes make a great second lathe but they are pretty limited by capacity.

I do disagree with Michael above. The lathe is nothing compared to the price of the other goodies. :) They ought to give them away.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

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