Rikon 70-220VSR Yet another newbie

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Forum topic by Vanraw posted 12-20-2015 02:41 AM 2204 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Vanraw's profile


4 posts in 1389 days

12-20-2015 02:41 AM

Topic tags/keywords: lathe

Hello all. Long time woodworker, but never a wood turner. So when Christmas comes around and my wife and I decided to just buy each other our own “big gifts”, my wife upgrades her Nikon’s and I start looking at my shop. Its missing something. A Lathe….

SOOOOO I researched some, and bought a Rikon 70-220VSR bench lathe cold. Seems like it and the Delta 46-460 and this Rikon were the best options. The Rikon had a faster deliver and a better sale. So its on its way. Now what.

I have zero knowledge of turning. I’m not even sure if everything I need to start is in the box. So looking for Some suggestions. I have no doubt I will pick it up. But would like to start playing when it gets here.

- Essential tools? Recommended scrapers or gouge sets? Carbide tipped tool set?
- Recommended Books or video’s? (Already watched some great stuff on youtube).
- Safety equipment? Face shields, etc.

Thanks in advance for anyone who responds.

12 replies so far

View David Taylor's profile

David Taylor

326 posts in 1321 days

#1 posted 12-20-2015 03:28 AM

Best recommendation I can make is to watch everything Bob Hamilton has ever put out on YouTube:) You’ll thank me later.

Oh, and tools, Thompson the way!

-- Learn Relentlessly

View ThomasChippendale's profile


244 posts in 1166 days

#2 posted 12-20-2015 03:35 AM

Most tools will be depending on the type of projects but for the essentials:

Face Shield
Large roughing gouge
Fine grinding wheel
sharpening guide


-- PJ

View jeff's profile


1132 posts in 3699 days

#3 posted 12-20-2015 10:21 AM

You will need a way to sharpen your tools with correct angles.I would recommend a slow speed grinder-Rikon has one, plus the Wolverine sharpening system.I have the Wolverine system plus Woodcrafts badged slow speed grinder.I have since added CBN grinding wheels-they are fantastic.Penn State has their Benjamin’s Best lathe tools which I think represent a good value,I have a few-you could learn to sharpen with these until committing to more expensive tools like Thompsons or others.I would not buy a set of lathe tools but select individual ones.You will need a roughing gouge-1”.Spindle gouge 3/8” and a bowl gouge if turning bowls 1/2 to 5/8”,these will get you going.Don’t forget lung/eye protection…

-- Jeff,Tucson,Az.

View Vanraw's profile


4 posts in 1389 days

#4 posted 12-20-2015 05:15 PM

Thanks guys. That’s exactly what I was looking for.

View Woodmaster1's profile


1089 posts in 2821 days

#5 posted 12-21-2015 01:50 AM

I have the rikon lathe and love it. I have turned several bowls, Christmas ornaments and other spindle projects. I have good crown tools and less expensive benjiman best tools. I think since your just starting the benjiman best will be just fine until you decide what your going to turn. I know some people will say buy the expensive tools. I think by the time you have sharpened the benjiman best down to nothing you will know what tools to upgrade in the future.

View JollyGreen67's profile


1676 posts in 2997 days

#6 posted 12-22-2015 01:32 AM

Is there a local woodturners organization? They will have all the info you will ever need. How about a local Woodcraft store, they provide turning lessons.

-- When I was a kid I wanted to be older . . . . . this CRAP is not what I expected ! RIP 09/08/2018

View LeeMills's profile


629 posts in 1535 days

#7 posted 12-22-2015 02:46 PM


Will you be turning spindle or face orientation to start with?

For either
Face protection and some type of dust mask for sanding.
A sharpening system.
Tools – a parting tool

For spindle work
A 3/8” and a 1/2” spindle gouge.
A 1” skew
A 1” spindle roughing gouge.

For face work
A 1/2” bowl gouge.
A 3/8” bowl gouge.

Other tools and sizes will be helpful but these should get you started.

I have two (shop made) carbide tools and they are ok for face work. To me there are just too many spindle cuts that I can not make with them and need conventional tools anyway.

I would start with spindle work as it is much more forgiving of errors. Once you learn the basics of tool control then move to the larger face work.
There are lots of good video but again they are generally geared to a specific type of turning or project.

I have tried several of the Hurricane tools and they seem to be as good as my Sorby and Hamlet. There are lots of good brands out there.

-- We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein

View Knothead62's profile


2600 posts in 3195 days

#8 posted 12-23-2015 06:04 PM

Try for woodturning info and advice. I have been on the forum for about 4 or 5 years.
Edit: I have a Rikon 70-050VS which has been superceded by another model. Love it! Beware- the lathe is the cheapest part of woodturning. It is easy to spend $1k or more on tools, sharpeners, chucks, etc.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5148 posts in 4195 days

#9 posted 12-23-2015 06:15 PM

Uvex face shield. Best one goin’.


View Vanraw's profile


4 posts in 1389 days

#10 posted 03-30-2016 02:13 AM

I wanted thank you guys again. The videos and comments helped. I had some family health issues that took me out of my shop, but finally got back to it. This is my first attempt tonight. Made from some stock 4 by 4 spruce.

Made some mistakes and learned, and will need to buy some more tools. I would like move to bowls. But I have to say this stuff is fun.

View Vanraw's profile


4 posts in 1389 days

#11 posted 03-30-2016 02:20 AM

I fail at photo orentation on phone…

View Woodknack's profile


12455 posts in 2614 days

#12 posted 03-31-2016 02:41 AM

Taking pictures is harder than it looks.

I’m not up on beginner videos as I learned in a classroom but Mike Waldt has a beginner series you might like.

-- Rick M,

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