buying my first

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Forum topic by sully909 posted 07-07-2016 02:40 AM 907 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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12 posts in 1943 days

07-07-2016 02:40 AM

Topic tags/keywords: new lathe

Hey gang I’m looking for some feedback on help with buying my first real lathe. I purchased a 113 series craftsman lathe just to see if I would enjoy it. Well one month later I’m finding it quite enjoyable and I’m ready to buy a better lathe as the craftsman is just not cutting it. My budget is only about max $1600.00 I’m looking at the jet 1440vs or maybe a nova 1624 if they are still out there. It looks like maybe a refurbished from the factory is the only option. What options do most people find important. I know evs is the most sought after option but what about after that. Also is worth investing in a tormex. Sharpener or just a one way style bench grinder jig. I’m leaning toward the one way jig to put more money in chucks, gouges, etc. All opinions are welcome. Thanks Sully909

7 replies so far

View rwe2156's profile


3069 posts in 1596 days

#1 posted 07-07-2016 10:08 AM

I bought a used Jet 1442vs. Overall, I think its a decent lathe but I don’t consider myself a “turner”. I mostly turn between centers – spindles, etc. If I was a serious bowl turner this might not be the lathe. Obviously the electronic speed controls are the best, but the Reeves drive on the Jet does ok.

IMO No, it is not worth investing in a Tormek. A standard grinder with jigs will sharpen gouges.

I agree with saving your money to spend on lathe accessories.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View OSU55's profile


1830 posts in 2105 days

#2 posted 07-07-2016 12:00 PM

If you are considering a reeves drive lathe, my value choice is the HF 34706 – review here. The slowest speed on these reeves drives limit them to ~14-15” diameter turning (surface cutting speed). Slower speed would help with some of the finishing I do on the lathe. Otherwise, it’s been a great tool.

No, a tormek is not worth the $. I have the Grizzly version and use tormek jigs. It’s great for resharpening, but really slow for reshaping. I use a bench grinder when I want to change a tool shape. I already had the Grizzly. Otherwise, I would have an 8” slow speed grinder with Wolverine type jigs.

View bigarm's profile


62 posts in 1217 days

#3 posted 07-07-2016 03:15 PM

Just something to consider – at that amount of money you can buy a Grizzly 0766. I have one and like it.

View JoeinGa's profile


7739 posts in 2123 days

#4 posted 07-07-2016 04:42 PM

I concur on the Grizzly. After doing almost a year of research (comparisons) I really wanted the G0766, but I was 2 days late in getting one of the first shipment of new ones, and I didn’t have the patience to wait upwards of 5 or 6 months for the next batch. So I went with the G0733, and boy am I’m glad I did. The 0766 has a few problems (you can google it to see) and my Go733 has been virtually problem free.

I just looked at Grizzly’s website and I see the 733 is on sale for $1650.

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View Woodknack's profile


12329 posts in 2496 days

#5 posted 07-07-2016 06:17 PM

Is your max budget, $1600, for the lathe + accessories or lathe only?

-- Rick M,

View HokieKen's profile


6153 posts in 1254 days

#6 posted 07-07-2016 07:24 PM

I think the most important thing to consider in your new purchase is “why is my craftsman not good enough?”. Whatever your reasons for wanting to buy a new lathe should most likely be your driving points in deciding on which one to buy. Just something to think about…

IMHO, a standard grinder with quality wheels and some shop-made jigs are all that’s needed for sharpening. Lots of folks swear by the wolverine jigs and 8” slow speed grinders. Personally, I prefer to spend that money on other things and there are lots of shop-made jigs online you can “borrow” the design from. Whatever grinder you use though, don’t make the wheels the place where you save some $.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View sully909's profile


12 posts in 1943 days

#7 posted 07-07-2016 10:59 PM

Thanks for all the great info and thoughts on the subject. I’m sure this comes up every other week on forums. Kenny made a great point a out looking at why I feel I need a new lathe and work from there. With the craftsman it is underpowered and has a lot of slop in the headstock. I also want to be able to drill using the tailstock quill and with the slop there is no trust in a perfect center hole. One last question. If I’m looking for a 12 – 16” lathe is that two big to try doing pens with as well.

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