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New toy, Nova 1644 II

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Forum topic by Thunderhorse posted 06-25-2017 03:07 AM 1043 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


06-25-2017 03:07 AM

While lots of folks have brand preferences, I went with the Nova. This is the one I’ve always wanted…well, sorta, this is the new version of the one I’ve wanted, at any rate. Price point was tolerable and the power is a huge step up. The swinging headstock was something I really wanted as I just honestly like to turn big things. I harvest my own wood, so…in fact started the day by getting a truckload of mesquite from my dad’s place. Was helping him work cattle 2 weeks ago and noticed it had gone over in a storm. I had my eye on that tree for a while, pretty burly in spots, gonna make some nice stuff, I hope.

Ended up getting it from the local Woodcraft and didn’t see it any cheaper anywhere else so factor in not paying any shipping (although the harrowing ride home with it was taxing) was a bonus. It was a fully assembled floor model…they had 2 in stock and both were assembled side by side. Its certainly heavy but ridiculous to manhandle fully assembled. Good news is I have a chain hoist in my shop. Bad news is that even with that, I barely had enough clearance and its still insanely awkward. But…we got it with some ingenuity, the hoist, a come-along, wasp spray, and brute force. “We” being my wife and me with my recently surgically repaired shoulder.

So, sample size too small for a review but I’m already frustrated. I have two Nova chucks. The old one has an insert to fit the smaller spindle on my Rikon midi and the newer one is the smaller size. Ok, I expected the smaller one not to fit, cost of doing business. I wrestled with the older one a while and got the inset out and….its too BIG. Really?

On second thought, I suppose its a good thing they make chucks for multiple spindle sizes I am currently without a chuck and that’s annoying. I have a big cedar burl I’ve been saving for 3 years I’m going to probably rough out tomorrow with the included faceplate and/or spur drive. (I have 800 acres of thick cedar and hardly ever see it burl, not like mesquite or oak.)

I’ll post pics and thoughts on actually turning on it when I get to it.

-- Fear is a Liar


17 replies so far

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Hockey

90 posts in 249 days


#1 posted 06-25-2017 04:25 AM

Congratulations. Looking forward to hearing how you like it.

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LeeMills

459 posts in 1138 days


#2 posted 06-25-2017 12:23 PM

Congrats on the new lathe; I predict you will really like it. I’ve had mine 8-9 years.
Not sure which chucks you have. When you get an insert make sure it is an oem (will come in a red Teknatool box). Some sold at WC are their own and can cause lots of runout.
If you smaller chuck is the mini or direct threaded G3, PSI sells a spindle adapter 1.25 to 1” and folks say it does not add any noticeable runout.

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

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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


#3 posted 06-25-2017 01:15 PM

Both the chucks and the one adapter are Nova branded but both are pretty old. One’s a G2…I think, heck I’m bad about that. Its a chuck…um…

Spindle on the Rikon was 1”. The chuck sans adapter is apparently 1 1/2” with the Spindle on the new lathe being 1 1/4”

I’ll would have like to be able to use at least one though I figured on buying a larger one soon. Its nice having multiple set ups so you don’t have to change jaws all the time.

Few pics of the new toy, the mesquite we cut up yesterday morning, our audience doing so, and the old, tired lathe.

 photo 20170624_1559451_zpsqboiyxoy.jpg

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 photo Laborday 030_zpslphxnul2.jpg

-- Fear is a Liar

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LeeMills

459 posts in 1138 days


#4 posted 06-25-2017 03:53 PM

You should be able to use both chucks (and buy another one also, you know you want to).
Their Precision Mini is a tommy bar type and direct threaded but can be used with the $20 spindle adapter from PSI.
Next larger is the G3 (I don’t think they made a G2). It can be direct threaded or insert style. Again the PSI spindle adapter or a new Nova insert.
Next is the Supernova (SN) or Supernova2 (SN2). Both are insert style. The SN had a key like a drill press chuck key which went into the body like the G3. The SN2 uses a hex key which is easier to use (and the back of the chuck is enclosed). All you would need is a new insert.
I still use my two SN’s with no problems (manufactured somewhere around 2000). The bodies are basically identical, to the SN2’s, just the scroll mechanism was changed.
I couldn’t tell from the pic but may be a G3 or the older SN. Both are good.

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

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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


#5 posted 06-25-2017 04:50 PM

You’re correct about the one for sure, I just have to go out and fetch the correct adapter. The one I have takes it to a 1”, need the next size up. The other has no adapter in it (but I will go look again to be sure) and is 1”.

And so far that big cedar burl is putting a whuppin on me. I definitely need ballast so I need to work up a plan to run some shelf rails on it. Runs pretty good, plenty strong and the tool rest/tail stock move freely but lock down tight. I had to move my grinder to set up the new lathe so working with carbides at the moment and my roughing gouge still has a decent edge on it.

I’ve never turned anything that large before and while it looked reasonably round and balanced, I’ve got a couple voids throwing off the weight some. One will be a neat feature. One will be a pain as its where the bowl rim would be. I’ve got a recess on it so its ready to flip.

Very early pros and cons:
Pro: reverse turning is nice to sand with.
power and stability (assumed, given adequate weight added.)
size….its just bigger, I can mount big work and get around to the angles I need to.

Cons
Weight. Oh, its dang heavy if you want to move it but it walked pretty bad until I was able to get some of the balance into the blank.

Ok, the belt changing is trickier than the old Rikon and that’s even with the screw stripped out and having to use vice grips. Some have said the same, some have said “nah, its easy” its a bit of a pain but repetition may make it quicker.

lack of a hand wheel on the spindle. Might be something I can pick up after market.

That’s about it. The include faceplate is pretty meh (small) but it is what it is, basic included stuff.

So far so good. There is going to be an adjustment period for certain and I chose a tricky piece to start with (unbalanced, wacky grain, voids, etc)

I need bigger tools. My carbides are largish, on homemade longer handles but still. My biggest rougher is a beast on a mini lathe, just right on my old midi but a little wimpy for this rig on larger pieces.

More to come.

-- Fear is a Liar

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Hockey

90 posts in 249 days


#6 posted 06-25-2017 05:12 PM

Thunderhorse, how big is that “big cedar burl” you reference?

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MrUnix

6002 posts in 2036 days


#7 posted 06-25-2017 06:27 PM

The include faceplate is pretty meh (small) but it is what it is, basic included stuff.

Get a thread tap and make your own from scrap wood as large as you want. As for the spindle adapter, be careful on large pieces! While an adapter works fine for most stuff, it will put a lot more stress on the spindle and bearings due to it’s extended length. I would be hesitant to use it on large, heavy blanks – particularly before they get trued up and are spinning way out of balance.

Cheers,
Brad

PS: The specs on the lathe claim it only weights 251 pounds (w/stand and motor) – that is pretty light for something with a 16” swing. I’d bolt it down if possible, instead of relying just on added weight. YMMV.

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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LeeMills

459 posts in 1138 days


#8 posted 06-25-2017 06:34 PM

Here’s the adapter to use your 1X8 direct threaded chuck
https://www.amazon.com/PSI-Woodworking-LA11418-Headstock-Spindle/dp/B000KIADBS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1498415045&sr=8-1&keywords=spindle+adapter+1.25X8
And the proper Nova insert for the other
https://www.amazon.com/ILNS-4-Inch-Thread-Insert-Adaptor/dp/B0064JJ746/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1498415226&sr=8-1&keywords=nova+insert+adapter

Lyle Jamieson has a good youtube on balancing a lathe. Takes about 2 minutes and removed about 60% of the “walking” mine had, I have never added additional ballast.

The belt change should not be a real problem. If I can find the pic of the modification I made I will post it for you.
That is a bummer about a lack of a handwheel, it doesn’t make sense to me as the older models came with one.
The 3” faceplate is all I have ever needed; I did drill two additional holes for mounting screws.

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

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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


#9 posted 06-25-2017 09:35 PM

I got an adapter and am up and running. It doesn’t extend the length, it screws up pretty much flush and has a set screw to lock it in. I ended up having to go with the house brand because its all they had and it seems to work well enough.

The floor of my shop is mostly concrete. we tore down the old garden shed that the previous owner put in and built on the pad. I has extensions that are plywood over joists on either side and one is covered by built in workbench. ....That might be okay, I think I would rather reinforce the floor before I did that. In any case, the vibration and movement went away once I flipped it on to the chuck and hogged out some more weight

Anyhow, I got the cedar burl mostly roughed out but its got so many odd bark inclusions and holes that I’m not sure if I will continue. At the very least its a “set aside and think about” It ended up about 15” across and 6” deep but I kept taking the rim down to avoid holes only to be in the next hole down.

Probably right about the faceplate. I’ve never worked with bigger so I was speculating a larger one would be useful. I grabbed a 5” when I got the insert so we’ll see.

-- Fear is a Liar

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MrUnix

6002 posts in 2036 days


#10 posted 06-25-2017 09:38 PM

I got an adapter and am up and running. It doesn’t extend the length, it screws up pretty much flush and has a set screw to lock it in.

That sounds like an insert, not a spindle adapter…
The insert is the way to go if possible, so you did good.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


#11 posted 06-29-2017 11:25 PM

I take alot of pictures but my computer died recently so I’m on a new one and I haven’t salvaged them yet. These are ….alright. I made a large one I was very proud of a few years ago and gave it to my inlaws for Christmas as they have been supportive of my hobby and my FIL actually got me into it though he’s not much of a turner, just occasionally will make something on his salvaged metal lathe.

Currently working on this:

Tough chunk to work with but I’m making a go of it. I am using only carbides for the time being as I have a sharpening jig on the way and need to set up my grinder I had to move to put the lathe.

Now, I have a question what should I do with this monster ash blank?

Its dry as a bone and has some checking in it, some pretty bad. Its only about 9” thick so if I split it for bowl blanks, I’ll lose some size. Considering mounting it end grain and seeing what I can make out of it. Its got some great zone line spalting in it but some weak areas and some worm holes.

-- Fear is a Liar

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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


#12 posted 07-02-2017 04:12 AM

Well, its been a week and I’ve made a ton of saw dust but not alot to show for it. I’ve been trying some new things, monkey see/monkey do off youtube and frankly, been unduly impatient with it. And such is a no-no for wood turning.

I liked this one. It was a nice mesquite round that was an off cut. Too shallow on one side so I flipped it and it would have been my first live edge…...and then I blew out the bottom. For some reason I thought I’d put a tenon on it rather than a recess.

I also roughed out a weird narrow vase thing that was going to be something else but it was…well, a failed experiment. It was very green so when I had a bad catch and yanked it off, I set it aside.

Have a nice medium sized bowl set aside to dry a little and in the chuck now is a second attempt at a live edge. Its a little rougher. Started out as a regular old bowl but a big chunk came off and I had to improvise. So far, so good.

So, as far as the lathe goes…..

I like it. There is an adjustment period. Its too low and I need to shim it quite a bit. I have some pressure treated 4X6 that I could bolt down on to and it would also give it some weight. I had a bad vibration problem but I poked and prodded a bit and the headstock needed tightening. I got the Nova sharpening rig and having some sharp tools made all the difference. I need to swap heads on the carbides and sharpen them next. I also need to work on my bandsaws, find a home for the belt sander, find a home for the old lathe….etc, etc.

-- Fear is a Liar

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Nubsnstubs

1207 posts in 1567 days


#13 posted 07-02-2017 02:48 PM

TH, I would advise against a piece of wood at the feet of your lathe. I did what you’re talking of doing once, and it was very unstable. There is too much space under a piece of wood to collect wood chips when the lathe is vibrating/shaking from an unbalanced turning. It will collect chips each time you use it, and become a bigger problem. My suggestion would be to use bricks or something heavy enough to lay flat on the floor preventing chips from getting under it.

I used 1/4×2x2×2 square tubing and bolted it to the legs, and also had a bolt for adjustment at the floor. Chips will build up all around the feet, but will not get under the bolt head and cause the lathe to rock. .............. Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson) www.woodturnerstools.com

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Thunderhorse

35 posts in 179 days


#14 posted 07-03-2017 05:26 AM



TH, I would advise against a piece of wood at the feet of your lathe. I did what you re talking of doing once, and it was very unstable. There is too much space under a piece of wood to collect wood chips when the lathe is vibrating/shaking from an unbalanced turning. It will collect chips each time you use it, and become a bigger problem. My suggestion would be to use bricks or something heavy enough to lay flat on the floor preventing chips from getting under it.

I used 1/4×2x2×2 square tubing and bolted it to the legs, and also had a bolt for adjustment at the floor. Chips will build up all around the feet, but will not get under the bolt head and cause the lathe to rock. .............. Jerry (in Tucson)

- Nubsnstubs

Thanks for the advice. I’m not sure what I will end up doing but I am getting more comfortable with it as is and keeping the proper speed for the stock. I had some real junk laying around the shop that I wanted to work on before cutting more. I’ve got about a 13W X 8D blank on there now and its trued up pretty well at 400ish rpm (2nd belt position)

Of course, I would really like to do larger items so at some point I will need to come up with a solution. None of the wood I have on hand is big enough and I’ve got a pretty good pile to go through.

-- Fear is a Liar

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LeeMills

459 posts in 1138 days


#15 posted 07-03-2017 10:23 PM

As far as vibration, Lyle Jamieson has a good youtube on setting up the lathe.
Short version, adjust one foot up or down (for me the easiest was the front tailstock end. Have a piece of wood running out of balance and adust until it is minimized. You will hear the change as well as feel the amount of vibration. After following his instructions about 60% of the shaking went away on mine and I have never added ballast.

Rather than a 2X or 4X to raise the lathe… turn about a 5” diameter “pad” and cut a recess (on the lathe or with a drill bit) the size of the lathe foot. Make it deep enough to epoxy to the foot and still be able to adjust the foot.
You can then sweep under the lathe without a bracket in the way.

Stuart Batty has some excellent fundamental turning instruction on Vimeo. The way he named them is a little random (like the three on chucks, recesses, and tenons are not together net to each other). This is not any projects, just basic need to know.
https://vimeo.com/woodturning/videos/sort:alphabetical/format:thumbnail

The lathe can handle your 13W X 8 deep but can your chuck jaws? IMHO 8” is too deep for freehand without a hollowing rig. Reference Batty’s two or three videos on tool overhang and control.

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

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