Nova G3 vs. Barracuda CSC2000C

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Forum topic by Woodknack posted 04-29-2013 05:27 AM 7147 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Woodknack's profile


12465 posts in 2619 days

04-29-2013 05:27 AM

Topic tags/keywords: lathe nova g3 midi chuck barracuda

Changing the original post as I found the difference between the G3 & Precision Midi. Now deciding between the G3 and Barracuda 2000 for a 9×30 lathe. The Barracuda comes with more jaws and is prethreaded but the Nova chucks have a really good reputation. Apparently it is much easier to mount stock in the G3 with it’s single T handle wrench.

Same lathe I blogged about here:

-- Rick M,

12 replies so far

View doubleDD's profile


8044 posts in 2282 days

#1 posted 04-29-2013 01:36 PM

I own a couple of the Barracuda 2000 and never had any problems. Checked out the Nova and it is also a good chuck so I bought one on sale for $99. No problems with it either. With the extra jaws, Barracuda was the better buy, plus I feel I can crank down much tighter on the Barracuda than the t-handle types. Back when I bought my first chuck from Penn state ind. it had 2 levers so maybe I’m just use to that type. Hope this helps.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Wildwood's profile


2529 posts in 2373 days

#2 posted 04-29-2013 01:44 PM

Rick sounds like any of three chucks mention should work well on your lathe. I like both tommy bar and single key chucks.

A tommy bar chuck for a 9” x 20” lathe, an excellent choice. Lighter in weight and thinner chuck body works well on small lathes. So, Nova mini or Barracuda would work well on that lathe especially if no need to buy a threaded insert.

G-3 more attractive too because you can buy a just new threaded insert if upgrade your lathe to one with larger spindle in the future.

-- Bill

View bondogaposis's profile


5151 posts in 2590 days

#3 posted 04-29-2013 01:49 PM

I can’t really compare as I only own one chuck, the super Nova and I like it a lot.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View HorizontalMike's profile


7770 posts in 3153 days

#4 posted 04-29-2013 03:00 PM

If you are considering the Nova G3 Chuck, why not go with the Delta Industrial 46-461 Reversible Nova G3-D Woodturning Chuck since it is Reversible? Just a thought. BTW, the difference is just the two set-screws at the end of the 1in x 8-TPI threads.

I like mine and bought an extra set of pin jaws to use on my recent purchase of a Delta Lathe in January. When I was researching this, someone spoke up and posted that the “multi-pak of jaws” included in sales like this, usually include jaw sets you usually never have a real need for. I cannot say that that comment s true, but it did influence my purchasing decision. And I was looking at the Barracuda2 T/N Plated Special Edition Lathe Key Chuck System at the time.

Bottom line, I do NOT think either decision could be wrong. They both appear to be popular Chucks.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Woodknack's profile


12465 posts in 2619 days

#5 posted 04-29-2013 05:11 PM

Thanks guys, looks like a draw. I’ll see which one I can catch on sale.

-- Rick M,

View CharlieM1958's profile


16281 posts in 4457 days

#6 posted 04-29-2013 05:54 PM

I swear by my Barracuda 3000. For $37 more than the Nova (Amazon price w/free shipping) you get the best of both worlds… single key operation and all the extra jaws.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View JTJr's profile


11 posts in 2913 days

#7 posted 05-05-2013 04:31 PM

I have a 3 chucks. Talon which I love, but jaws are expensive. Keyed, uses an insert, separate but very good insert, which becomes an integral part of the chuck until you move up to a larger spindle and need to get a different one. Quality components, screw is stout and locks in so it cannot turn. Has grub screws to hold to the lathe spindle for reverse turning. Haven’t had to use them for sanding. Haven’t done a reverse turning.

Woodcraft Wood River Tommy bar chuck that requires an insert. Will not buy another, because there is no way to lock in the spindle insert. This one came flying off my lathe unscrewing the chuck from the insert when slowing down a spindle project from a relatively fast speed. It had loosened from vibration when I was finishing the end of a project and had moved the tailstock away. The screw that comes with this chuck has no corners, so it can spin and is a pain to remove as well from the project, until you go get the vise grips. The spindle insert keeps coming off the chuck, and then I need to grab a pair of slip joint pliers to get it off the lathe spindle. PITA

Barracuda 2000 Tommy Bar for 1” x 8TPI. I like this chuck, came with #2, #3, Pin, and #1 jaws. Does not have a way to lock for reverse turning, but has never come off reverse sanding. Good quality, chrome plated. Has done everything I have asked of it. Screw is barely adequate, but at least it doesn’t spin when you’re trying to remove it. Lighter weight, just because it doesn’t need all the metal for keys, but solid enough for midi lathe and haven’t turned anything yet the it didn’t handle. Admittedly, that’s not a lot of big bowls., on my Delta 46-460.

I have no problem using Tommy bar chucks, and feel that they are as easy to use as keyed chucks. Say to myself “Leading Lower Loosens” when trying to mount something, to remind myself that if I’m using it for compression, to look for a hole on the lower part of the chuck that is behind the hole on the upper part to insert the Tommy Bars to tighten or in front to loosen.

And Tommy bar chucks are much faster to adjust, although that is not really needed when you make all of your tenons the right size, since you should only need to move your chuck jaws a smidge. Just think of it as a baby Easy Wood Chuck zoom ring without the facncy easy change jaws and a 5th of the price. (I like that chuck, but will probably never buy one at the current price levels.)

View Woodknack's profile


12465 posts in 2619 days

#8 posted 05-05-2013 10:55 PM

A fellow LJ sold me a Nova Midi at a good price, haven’t had a chance to use it yet.

-- Rick M,

View TheDane's profile


5575 posts in 3902 days

#9 posted 05-05-2013 11:32 PM

+1 for HorizintalMike’s recommendation. I bought the Delta version of the G3 a couple of months ago, and it is an excellent addition to my tool arsenal.

I bought a PSI Utility chuck (the one with 2 tommy bars) when I first got my lathe, and it is a respectable tool. However, I have found I can get a tighter grip on the tenon with the G3, and the ability to lock it down for reverse turning is a real plus.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View JTJr's profile


11 posts in 2913 days

#10 posted 05-22-2013 09:10 PM

Rick, just one pointer on dove tail jaw chucks. Keep the tenon, or the recess very close to the size of the jaws when opened up about 3/16 ths of an inch, so that they have full contact. While they can open up much further, their gripping power is most strong at that point. I have used each and every one of the jaws that I have with my chucks and they are great to have to fit to a particular situation. Usually using #2, but I have multiples, and usually one of the other will have pin jaws for gripping small items (second most use), or the #3 jaws for the occasional larger bowl.

A plus on dove tail jaws, is that the smooth surface means that they will barely leave an indication that they were used when properly fitted into a recess. But you will have to have something for them to register against.

Good luck with that Nova Midi.


View Woodknack's profile


12465 posts in 2619 days

#11 posted 05-23-2013 05:04 AM

Yeah I’ve been having trouble keeping bowls on the chuck when using the dovetail side. I’m going to order a dovetail scraper that matches my chuck and that will hopefully fix the problem.

-- Rick M,

View Kreegan's profile


1452 posts in 2385 days

#12 posted 05-23-2013 01:19 PM

I use a skew chisel on its side like a scraper to make dovetail tenons. It works pretty well. The main things to remember are don’t make the tenon long enough to touch the bottoms of the jaws and give it a good shoulder for the tops of the jaws to rest on.

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