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Laguna 1524, Powermatic 2014 or Something else?...

Mark Hepburn

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Hi folks. Need the wisdom of the group. It's been a long time and lots has happened this past year+

Looking at another hand surgery. Specifically, another CMC arthroplasty with a carpal tunnel procedure like was done on my left hand/arm a while back. Rehab takes months and knowing what I know now, my days of turning big stuff are probably behind me. C'est la vie. Time to look forward to what I can do. :)

Small stuff. Segmented stuff. Lidded boxes and pens. All of which I like to do anyway. So I've been out of the lathe market for years now and have read a bit and such and turned on a bunch of lathes and here's my plan:

Downsize my shop. I just sold off my sliding table (panel) saw, my EVS floor drill press, and soon my edge and wide belt stationary sander. And a relatively new Jet spiral head planer. I'll keep the Kapex, the Grizzly 1013 TS and the bandsaw, and downdraft table plus some hand tools and move into a shop about 9 x 27. I currently have a Jet 1642, works great and no issues. Plus I have a vacuum adapter on it. I also have a VB36 that is in need of a new inverter. I don't see myself hogging off giant logs any more, and so my precious VB will be going on the auction block one of these days.

Yes, this is a long-winded post. Apologies.

I've turned on Oneway, Robust, Powermatic, Jet, and the VB. Liked them all. I also worked with a couple of the midi lathes at the AAW symposium youth classes (as a helper with Joe and also with Al) a couple of times. Nice little lathes.

I'm wondering if I should squeeze the Jet into my shop, or sell it and downsize to a Laguna 15|24, the Powermatic 2014, or is there something else out there?

Laguna pros: Lots of torque at lower end. It's only 1.5 hp but 120v. Like the adjustable legs, good build quality
Laguna cons: only 1.5 hp, not wild about the power range of the belt settings

Powermatic pros: also lots of torque at low end. Nice build quality from what I read
Powermatic cons: only 20" length in the ways and an inch less swing. Powermatic price (unless it's on sale).

I briefly considered the Jet 1221 and it's a nice lathe but a little under powered for my liking, and frankly the stand looks like it will topple over at any moment. And I like and have a few Jet tools in my shop.

So I'd appreciate any thoughts on a direction forward. I'm not buying until well into winter this coming year. Probably February or so. I want to get it into the shop before my surgery so I'll have something to look forward to (if I do buy instead of keeping the Jet).

Thanks all. Merry Christmas!

Mark
 

Mark Hepburn

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The Nova Saturn is an exceptional lathe. Small footprint 16” swing rotating head. DVR motor (no belt) 1.5 HP 120v. 2. HP 240v. Reasonable price.
https://www.tools-plus.com/nova-lathes-55241.html


Thanks, I hadn’t even considered Nova, even though I have and like their chucks. I’m going to take a look at that link.
By the way, that’s one heck of a daily driver in your avatar photo! :)
 
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we are all in a DASH....term from niece....she pretty smart.....face up to it....sell the VB and jet 1642.....buy the powermatic 2014.....dont look back....after surgery take the vehicle and visit some lumbermills @ least 500 miles away
 

Mark Hepburn

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we are all in a DASH....term from niece....she pretty smart.....face up to it....sell the VB and jet 1642.....buy the powermatic 2014.....dont look back....after surgery take the vehicle and visit some lumbermills @ least 500 miles away

she sounds like a wise niece Charlie. I’m leaning hard in that direction. But that Nova link Tim pointed me to is worth thinking about. Beltless, direct drive motor and a43” footprint.

powermatic sure would look nice in the shop.
 
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I bought the PM2014 in the summer and couldn’t be more pleased. I got the bed extension which gives ya another 13” in length when it’s in the upper position and ups the swing to 19” in the lower position. I didn’t buy the stand. Mounted it on a heavy table and it’s solid as a rock. Did buy it on sale. Best of luck with the surgery
 

Mark Hepburn

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I bought the PM2014 in the summer and couldn’t be more pleased. I got the bed extension which gives ya another 13” in length when it’s in the upper position and ups the swing to 19” in the lower position. I didn’t buy the stand. Mounted it on a heavy table and it’s solid as a rock. Did buy it on sale. Best of luck with the surgery

Thanks Jim. Do you use it much without the extension? I’m wondering what it’s like to work on with the stock 20” length.

I had thought about building a heavy bench with drawers for chucks and sanding stuff.
 
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I don't have any experience with Laguna lathes, but I do have quite a bit with the 2014.

I bought it for pretty much the same type of work you envision and after 7 months I am quite happy with my investment.

As you point out, the build quality is excellent, and the 240-volt 3-phase motor has plenty of torque.

The only issue I have had was with the AC power in my shop. Every circuit has a GFCI, and the 2014 would kick the GFCI off when I hit the go button. I made a call to Powermatic tech support, and the tech immediately identified the problem ... the inverter is not compatible with GFCI devices. He suggested I add a standard receptacle to the circuit upstream from the GFCI, and that solved the problem. I just have to remember to plug into the right receptacle.

I did not buy the bed extension (I have a 3520C for longer pieces).
 

Mark Hepburn

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I don't have any experience with Laguna lathes, but I do have quite a bit with the 2014.

I bought it for pretty much the same type of work you envision and after 7 months I am quite happy with my investment.

As you point out, the build quality is excellent, and the 240-volt 3-phase motor has plenty of torque.

The only issue I have had was with the AC power in my shop. Every circuit has a GFCI, and the 2014 would kick the GFCI off when I hit the go button. I made a call to Powermatic tech support, and the tech immediately identified the problem ... the inverter is not compatible with GFCI devices. He suggested I add a standard receptacle to the circuit upstream from the GFCI, and that solved the problem. I just have to remember to plug into the right receptacle.

I did not buy the bed extension (I have a 3520C for longer pieces).

I have the shop wired for it and the 240 has no GFCI so I’d be good there. Let me ask, do you find that you just have to remove the tail stock for working room or is it fine as is? Or do you just move over to the 3520?
 
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I have the shop wired for it and the 240 has no GFCI so I’d be good there. Let me ask, do you find that you just have to remove the tail stock for working room or is it fine as is? Or do you just move over to the 3520?
The 2014 only requires 120-VAC ... the inverter bumps it up to 240-VAC/3-phase. I have done a few pieces where I have removed the tailstock and slid the headstock toward the right end of the ways so I could stand at the end of the lathe for hollowing.
 
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As I do very little spindle work, the 20” length has worked well for me. I keep the extension in the low position and like GR, move the headstock down if I need the larger swing. And as stated above, you only need 120 not 240.
 
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I 2nd the Nova Saturn. I have the full length Galaxi, same headstock unit. The Saturn could be bench mounted on top of a tool cabinet if desired. The DVR drive is very nice. I would like slower low speed (100 rpm) for sanding and finishing big bowls, but sounds like you wont be making anything very big. The 8 speed presets and no belt to change are nice. I run mine on 120v, ~. 1.5 hp. Takes a pretty heavy cut with a 5/8” bowl gouge to stall it, otherwise the motor speed sensor maintains speed even with varying load as cut depth/load changes.
 

Timothy Allen

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The Robust Sweet16 (standard bed) has a footprint that is just about the same size as the PM2014 (on stand), and a bit smaller than that of the Laguna (just looking at specs)..... just sayin' ;-)
 

Jim McLain

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Mark - Another small lathe you might consider is the Vicmarc VL240. A little higher priced than the ones you have listed but seems to be very functional and has been getting some great reviews.
 
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I have the Vic 240 and love it. The headstock set up for pivoting is the only one on the market that I have seen that does it right. They have a set pin. Pull the pin, move to 30 degrees and you can turn bowls up to maybe 18 inches and still use the standard banjo. You do need to use a set screw to eliminate any headstock vibration. Pull the pin, and move back to spindle orientation, reset the pin, and it is perfectly lined up with the ways. Heavy, I don't know how much, but I could push my American Beauty around on the floor without too much trouble. Not the 240. It has 3 speed ranges which I prefer. With 2 speed ranges, the low range is generally too slow for some of my bowl turning, but great for coring. The high speed range is great for turning, but lacks torque in the low speeds, which you need for coring. Mid range is perfect... It does not have a mobility kit. When I asked, the response I got was 'When you have it where you want it, why would you ever want to move it?' 220 volt and 2 hp motor. Plenty of power.

robo hippy
 
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Reed, the Nova galaxi does that too. I love it for any hollowing or internal bowl work. Another vote for nova saturn. it's been an excellent unit, however, customer service can take some patience... I've never had a problem, they just work on their own timeline for communicating.
 
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@Mark Hepburn , sorry to hear about your difficulties. Even if it is c'est la vie, it still sucks. Given your stated goal of smaller turnings I wonder if a 3 HP machine isn't much more power than you need. I would also consider whether you would want to deal with the added weight of a 3HP motor. I would proffer the same advice regarding bed length, a shorter bed is probably plenty for what you are after. And you don't need a big swing, either. As to voltage, you have easy access to 240V now, but might there be another move in your future. A 120V lathe is much easier to site.

As an owner of a Nova 1624 with a DVR motor upgrade I can second (or third) the recommendation to look at the Saturn. I would also suggest you look at their Orion model, as well. The only thing my 24" bed is too short for is parking the tailstock. So if you go with the Saturn I would strongly urge you to purchase the optional bed extension AND the optional hinge (sold separately). I have never used my bed extension for turning, but it has proved invaluable for getting the tail stock out of the way. And I suspect that even after your rehab you will not be looking fondly at the task of removing or reinstalling the tailstock. In fact, fro me, next time around availability of a swing away device will be a central issue in my selection process.

I will also put a plug in for a rotating head stock. There are a lot of strong opinions out there on these, but I am firmly in the yes camp. I bring it up here, though, because I think it offers you some advantages if in fact your new wrists/hands have some limitations of their own. As compared to a sliding headstock, the rotating head stock allows a lot of flexibility for how the wood and tools are positioned and improving visibility. And you get to maintain access to the lathe bed for mounting things like a hollowing rig. I would be keen to take a look at the Vic 240, Robo mentioned, but I will also say that in my experience the Nova rotating mechanism has been spot on, with detents for 90 and common angles.

Which brings me to my last point. I don't know what your limitations will ultimately be, but if you find that tool holding or vibration are problems then consider how an articulated arm hollowing rig might be an aid. Specifically the one I have in mind is the Simple Hollowing System from Harrison Specialties. If you found a used Kobra that might also work, but I think the Elbow system is not ideal for how I envision it being used (the "forearm" section is too long limiting the range of motion). The SHS on a home made stand off arm coupled with the rotating headstock opens up a lot of possibilities for turning. If now or later you (or anyone else) wants to discuss this idea more, start a new t hread or drop me a PM.
 
Last edited:
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Welcome back, Mark. I've often wondered why you went AWOL. Sorry to hear about all your physical/medical problems. Hope all goes well going forward.
I have no recommendations for a new lathe - sorry! But, in my 35+ years of turning I've only had two lathes and both had a 1hp motor. I only ever wished for more power a handful (or less) of times. However, most of my turnings have been under 12-13". Good luck!
 

Mark Hepburn

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The Robust Sweet16 (standard bed) has a footprint that is just about the same size as the PM2014 (on stand), and a bit smaller than that of the Laguna (just looking at specs)..... just sayin' ;-)

I got a chance to turn on a couple of the Robust lathes at David Ellsworth's class in PA, and they're very nice indeed. But to be honest, just more than I want to spend. I know you get what you pay for, but you know... :-D

Update: Darn it, Tim.. Now you've got me thinking about those Robust lathes. :confused:

Brent English made a couple of bowl tool rests for my VB a few years ago. Beautiful work from those guys.
 
Last edited:

Mark Hepburn

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Welcome back, Mark. I've often wondered why you went AWOL. Sorry to hear about all your physical/medical problems. Hope all goes well going forward.
I have no recommendations for a new lathe - sorry! But, in my 35+ years of turning I've only had two lathes and both had a 1hp motor. I only ever wished for more power a handful (or less) of times. However, most of my turnings have been under 12-13". Good luck!

Hey Tom and thanks! I'm like athlete's foot, you can't ever really get rid of me. :)

Like you, I'm not planning on big stuff or long spindles. Pepper mills and such but that is probably the max. If I get 2 hp or close that should be more than enough for me.
 

Mark Hepburn

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Mark - Another small lathe you might consider is the Vicmarc VL240. A little higher priced than the ones you have listed but seems to be very functional and has been getting some great reviews.

Hey Jim, thanks. Yes, it's a bit spendy for me. But a beautiful lathe. I use Nova and Vicmarc chucks. I like their 120 a lot. But even if I could sell my VB, I won't get a price that will cover one of the Robust or Vicmarc lathes. It needs an inverter.

And I know it may sound dumb, but I just don't want to buy used. I'd like my last lathe to be shiny and new in the box :)
 

Mark Hepburn

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@Mark Hepburn , sorry to hear about your difficulties. Even if it is c'est la vie, it still sucks. Given your stated goal of smaller turnings I wonder if a 3 HP machine isn't much more power than you need. I would also consider whether you would want to deal with the added weight of a 3HP motor. I would proffer the same advice regarding bed length, a shorter bed is probably plenty for what you are after. And you don't need a big swing, either. As to voltage, you have easy access to 240V now, but might there be another move in your future. A 120V lathe is much easier to site.

As an owner of a Nova 1624 with a DVR motor upgrade I can second (or third) the recommendation to look at the Saturn. I would also suggest you look at their Orion model, as well. The only thing my 24" bed is too short for is parking the tailstock. So if you go with the Saturn I would strongly urge you to purchase the optional bed extension AND the optional hinge (sold separately). I have never used my bed extension for turning, but it has proved invaluable for getting the tail stock out of the way. And I suspect that even after your rehab you will not be looking fondly at the task of removing or reinstalling the tailstock. In fact, fro me, next time around availability of a swing away device will be a central issue in my selection process.

I will also put a plug in for a rotating head stock. There are a lot of strong opinions out there on these, but I am firmly in the yes camp. I bring it up here, though, because I think it offers you some advantages if in fact your new wrists/hands have some limitations of their own. As compared to a sliding headstock, the rotating head stock allows a lot of flexibility for how the wood and tools are positioned and improving visibility. And you get to maintain access to the lathe bed for mounting things like a hollowing rig. I would be keen to take a look at the Vic 240, Robo mentioned, but I will also say that in my experience the Nova rotating mechanism has been spot on, with detents for 90 and common angles.

Which brings me to my last point. I don't know what your limitations will ultimately be, but if you find that tool holding or vibration are problems then consider how an articulated arm hollowing rig might be an aid. Specifically the one I have in mind is the Simple Hollowing System from Harrison Specialties. If you found a used Kobra that might also work, but I think the Elbow system is not ideal for how I envision it being used (the "forearm" section is too long limiting the range of motion). The SHS on a home made stand off arm coupled with the rotating headstock opens up a lot of possibilities for turning. If now or later you (or anyone else) wants to discuss this idea more, start a new t hread or drop me a PM.

Hi Mark. I appreciate your very well considered thoughts here. As to my rehab first and the outlook. For about 31 1/2 months zero stress, then another 3 months of 5 lbs max, then moving up as tolerated. Since it's my right hand this time, it'll both be worse and better for faster rehab (right handed here).

My left hand has no pain, and about 90% range of motion but about 80% of previous strength. That's way better than what it was before the surgery so if I have the same result I know where I'll be. Which is why I was asking GR about having to remove the tail stock and how often.

I didn't really look at the Orion but I just did. About 100+ lbs heavier, a bit longer and an 18" swing, which means I could turn some platters if I want without worrying about the banjo getting under them.

I'm agnostic on the rotating head stock. My Jet slides, and I'm sure if there were alignment problems that they've all been engineered out by now for both sliders and rotating heads. A rotating head would sort of mimic turning on the VB in a way.

I have tons of respect for Robo and if he uses something I'm well inclined to go with it (and I have a couple of his robo-rests), but it's too much for me to spend. Especially since I'm looking down the barrel of a deductible, co-pay and whatever else Blue Cross won't cover at the beginning of a new year. Last time I had this done, it was pretty expensive. And this year I had a septoplasty, sinuplasty, and every other "plasty" the ENT docs could throw at me. I literally had tubes removed from my nostrils the day Louisiana went on lockdown for Covid. I'll never forget being the only patient in a closed doctor's office. Talk about service!:D

Anyway, I digress as I always tend to do. The Orion is on the top end of my budget, the Powermatic the middle and the Saturn at the bottom. The Powermatic on sale brings it close to the Saturn. And I have some time still. Lots to digest but you have given me much to think about.

Oh, I have that Harrison Specialties system with the laser. The build quality for the cost is outstanding.
 

Mark Hepburn

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Mark, it sounds like the rotating hs would be of ergonomic benefit to you. Nova has a bolt on outrigger for the Galaxi, Saturn & Orion (different tool rest risers by model). I have one which works very well. No need to remove the tailstock. Turn up to ~ 30”. The advantage of the Saturn/Galaxi vs the Orion is the hs can slide down the bed which increases the work length (bowl depth) that can be handled with the outrigger.
 

Mark Hepburn

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Mark, it sounds like the rotating hs would be of ergonomic benefit to you. Nova has a bolt on outrigger for the Galaxi, Saturn & Orion (different tool rest risers by model). I have one which works very well. No need to remove the tailstock. Turn up to ~ 30”. The advantage of the Saturn/Galaxi vs the Orion is the hs can slide down the bed which increases the work length (bowl depth) that can be handled with the outrigger.

Doug, I spent some time on the Teknatool website last night. The Saturn and Orion are both appealing to me. I've given a lot of thought to the rotating headstock and never had any concerns about using it, but never really wanted it either. But for a small footprint shop it may be the way to go. Do you know the diameter of the tool rest it accepts? I have several from Robust that are 1" and want to be able to use them. It's not on their site that I can find, and on Rockler's website is shows 25mm/1". Not the same and I don't know if the difference matters to be honest.
 

Mark Hepburn

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Mark, I just noticed two things in your post. first, you have some nice custom jig work for your SHS setup. Second, you have a really clean shop!
:)

That might have been vacuumed for the pic :D.

Yes I made a simple stand off for the SHS that works well and dramatically increases its utility. Particularly when combined with the rotating HS. I use the SHS, the stand off and rotate the HS very often and on various projects. I think these would be great benefit to someone with upper extremity limitations.
 

Mark Hepburn

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The Nova tool rests are all 1". The post length can vary some between brands, but I have a couple of Robust rests that fit fine. I'd have to measure the length of the posts.

Thanks Mark. Length doesn't matter. Mine fit the Jet and probably be a bit tall for the Novas but I can have them cut down. I have a buddy who's wife and brothers own a ship fabrication company. Somewhat ironically, they're building an icebreaker there at the moment. I'll plug them here in case anyone needs a ship built:D

https://thoma-sea.com/

(I don't know if I can get anyone a discount though)
 
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Doug, I spent some time on the Teknatool website last night. The Saturn and Orion are both appealing to me. I've given a lot of thought to the rotating headstock and never had any concerns about using it, but never really wanted it either. But for a small footprint shop it may be the way to go. Do you know the diameter of the tool rest it accepts? I have several from Robust that are 1" and want to be able to use them. It's not on their site that I can find, and on Rockler's website is shows 25mm/1". Not the same and I don't know if the difference matters to be honest.

As Mark said 1” tool rest. I have 5 Robust and 2 of Robo’s tool rests and all fit the banjo and the outrigger riser. As for small shop footprint - there are some shortbed lathes that use bed extensions mounted low off the leg for increased turning capacity. Thing is that length is always there, unless you mount/dismount the extension each time. The Nova outrigger pivots up against the hs end of the bed, only adding 3-4” of length and no width with the legs attached ( it is an inch or 2 wider than the lathe bed). A very robust, compact solution. There is a big advantage to an outrigger/extension that bolts to the lathe vs a stand alone solution - the tool rest moves with the lathe, so when an unbalanced piece gyrates things around, the tool rest and tool move in unison allowing more controlled cuts and getting to a balanced piece easier and faster.
 

Mark Hepburn

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As Mark said 1” tool rest. I have 5 Robust and 2 of Robo’s tool rests and all fit the banjo and the outrigger riser. As for small shop footprint - there are some shortbed lathes that use bed extensions mounted low off the leg for increased turning capacity. Thing is that length is always there, unless you mount/dismount the extension each time. The Nova outrigger pivots up against the hs end of the bed, only adding 3-4” of length and no width with the legs attached ( it is an inch or 2 wider than the lathe bed). A very robust, compact solution. There is a big advantage to an outrigger/extension that bolts to the lathe vs a stand alone solution - the tool rest moves with the lathe, so when an unbalanced piece gyrates things around, the tool rest and tool move in unison allowing more controlled cuts and getting to a balanced piece easier and faster.

The more I look into the outrigger solution, the more appealing it is to me. The footprint of the Saturn is only 43" long and I like that quite a bit. And I just noticed that the Orion is only 45. Compared to my Jet at 72" that 2+ feet is huge. I could stick my grinding station right there.

If i could turn 3" boxes on the VB I'd be all set. :)
 
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Have you/anyone looked into the “soon to be released” Record Power Coronet Envoy (115v-1.5hp) or Regent (220v-2hp) lathes? Dealer says they should be available within the next two weeks...delays due to Covid. Sliding head with 360 rotation, 16” (Envoy) and 18” (Regent) swing, 24” centers and 39” outboard capability and lanyard controls with magnetic box. Wanting to move up from an old JET 1236 and these look promising...to me. Pricing; $1999 and $2399 respectfully. New to the forum, live in the Ozarks and looking forward to learning from y’all.
 

Mark Hepburn

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Have you/anyone looked into the “soon to be released” Record Power Coronet Envoy (115v-1.5hp) or Regent (220v-2hp) lathes? Dealer says they should be available within the next two weeks...delays due to Covid. Sliding head with 360 rotation, 16” (Envoy) and 18” (Regent) swing, 24” centers and 39” outboard capability and lanyard controls with magnetic box. Wanting to move up from an old JET 1236 and these look promising...to me. Pricing; $1999 and $2399 respectfully. New to the forum, live in the Ozarks and looking forward to learning from y’all.

hey Larry. I haven’t but I’m going to. I have a couple of Record chucks and like them quite a bit. Thanks.
 
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La Grange, IL
Mark any chance you have or would consider a little video showing your “extension” of the SHS system. Looks very interesting.

Actually I have no idea how I would post a video here if I had one, which I don't. As testament to my computer prowess I took a look back at my original post and now realize that two of the photos I attached are too small to see. No idea how I did that. I'll have to see if I can post them again without repeating the mistake.

But I would be happy to tell you more or answer any questions you or anyone has. What would you like to know?
 

Emiliano Achaval

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Actually I have no idea how I would post a video here if I had one, which I don't. As testament to my computer prowess I took a look back at my original post and now realize that two of the photos I attached are too small to see. No idea how I did that. I'll have to see if I can post them again without repeating the mistake.

But I would be happy to tell you more or answer any questions you or anyone has. What would you like to know?
I'm sorry to hear about your health problems. Wishing you the best. About a video, you would have to post it to your YouTube account and post the link here.
 
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I had the older version of a Jet 1642 which I sold. I’m moving into a much smaller shop and needed a smaller lathe, and I bought the PM2014.

I looked at the Grizzly, which has a 1” spindle and that would mean new chucks, or adapters, and new faceplates. It’s also listed as 220V which I don’t have

I looked at the Nova Saturn, online anyway, I couldn’t find one to put my hands on.

I looked at the PM2014 and I could put my hands on it and I liked it. It suits my needs and I like the sliding headstock, the movable control box and that it will spin as low as 15 RPMs. The first thing I put on it was an out of round chunk of oak that barely cleared the bed. Yeah, the lathe walked and bounced and I slowed the RPMs down and I was able to round the blank, although slower than I would have on the Jet. But I was able to get it done. I didn't get the bed extension and I doubt I will.

I’m not an expert by any means, but I really like the lathe, it’s well-built and it fits me and my needs well. It isn’t a production lathe, but I’m not a production turner. It’s great choice and I’m very happy with it.
 
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Actually I have no idea how I would post a video here if I had one, which I don't. As testament to my computer prowess I took a look back at my original post and now realize that two of the photos I attached are too small to see. No idea how I did that. I'll have to see if I can post them again without repeating the mistake.

But I would be happy to tell you more or answer any questions you or anyone has. What would you like to know?
What did you use for materials? Shop scraps? How has it lasted? Any more photos, details.

Paul
 
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Tell you what, rather than hijack this thread any further I'll start a new one in the Tutorials & Jigs section. I can take some more informative pictures, get some dimensions and maybe point out what I'd do differently if I wasn't too lazy. But give me a day or two.
 
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