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Tools

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Larry Presnell, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. Larry Presnell

    Larry Presnell

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2012
    Messages:
    5
    Location (City & State):
    Western NC
    Hey guys, 1st post. If you had 5 to 6 thousand to spend, what lathe & turning tools would you buy? I thought about a mini lathe, but would soon outgrow it. I plan to turn everything from a few pens to bowls to who knows what.
    Thanks,
    Larry
     
  2. Howard Beaver

    Howard Beaver

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2007
    Messages:
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    Location (City & State):
    Paddock Lake, WI
    Larry

    This is a really loaded question on this forum! Like asking which car maker is best at a car show.

    Find yourself a local club and get yourself an oportunity to turn on different lathes/tools. Also seriously consider taking a turning course, this is money very well spent and it will also give you first hand experience with some tools and lathes.

    The mini-lathe isn't a bad starting point either, low initial costs, time to learn about things before dropping the big bucks. And just because you replace the mini lathe doesn't mean you can't continue to use it, just try taking a full size lathe on vacation with you!

    Welcome to wood turning! And be prepared to want a lot more than you can afford!

    Howard
     
  3. Dean Center

    Dean Center

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    1,129
    Location (City & State):
    Bozeman, MT
    Good advice from Howard. As you work through this joyous process, keep in mind that 1/2-2/3 of the money you spend initially will be for chisels/gouges, chucks, sharpening equipment, sandpaper, safety gear, etc, etc.
     
  4. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Location (City & State):
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    Great advice from Howard and Dean. The amount of money you have available to spend really is not the best criterion for your decision. As Dean indicated, other things like tools and accessories will take the lion's share of your turning budget anyway -- regardless of what you pay for a lathe. Keep in mind that nobody is going to ask about your lathe when they are admiring what you have made.
     
  5. John Lawson

    John Lawson

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2008
    Messages:
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    Location (City & State):
    The Adirondacks
    Bill's right, not even another turner will ask unless there is something remarkable about the dimensions of your work.
     
  6. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Larry, I forgot to say welcome to the forum. To give a more direct answer to your question:
    Your idea of getting a mini lathe is about as good an answer as anything that I might come up with. The Jet mini has outsold all the others by far because of its good reputation in quality, reliability, and support. For a bit larger lathe, the Delta midi lathe is also a top notch machine.

    As far as money is concerned, if I (and probably most other turners) approached this from the perspective of an accountant, we might have decided to pick some other less expensive hobby like flying, sailing, golf, ham radio, or photography. :D (I am just kidding and besides, I have not gotten around to golf and sailing yet)


    Don't worry about outgrowing your mini lathe. Many, if not most turners who I know have both a mini lathe and a large lathe. I bought my Jet mini lathe a few years after getting my large lathe. I still have and use my mini lathe.
     
  7. n7bsn

    n7bsn

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2005
    Messages:
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    Location (City & State):
    wetter washington
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    I started with a "mini", sold it bought a large lathe.... and bought another mini, then added a Midi, then added a treadle (foot powered)...

    But then the DW got interested in the hobby and we can sometimes both be found out working at the same time
     
  8. Gretch Flo

    Gretch Flo

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Messages:
    1,223
    Location (City & State):
    Haslett, Michigan
    Now boys!!!! (mother here):D
    Happy New year. May your tools be sharp and keep up with your wit and tongue.:D
     
  9. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Mom, I think that there is a cooking show about to start on HGTV. :D (J/K)

    BTW, I have been in the kitchen cooking all day today. I just put a date nut bread in the oven a few minutes ago (one of my favorites). My wife is making a stew (another one of my favorites). Gotta go back and clean up the dishes.
     
  10. Matt Reagan

    Matt Reagan

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2012
    Messages:
    8
    Location (City & State):
    Front Royal, VA
    another newbie

    I would agree with all before me. I have two other friends who turn and have more experience. Having seen them work and have them teach me has really helped increase my skill and determine what i wanted in a lathe. (little things really added up, like a spindle lock, easy belt changes, as well as big things like electronic variable speed, as well as how smooth a good machine runs).

    As to a particular recommendation, I just bought my third lathe, a Jet 1642, and wish I had the funds to buy this first. Lathes hold thier value pretty well, so I would find a machine from a good manufacturer that fits your needs, capacity, and voltage.Spending $2G on the lathe would leave you plenty of funds for a couple classes and quailty tools (i'd recommend Thompsons), a few chucks, and have money for a dust collection (collector, air or face shield), as well as a bandsaw and chainsaw if needed.

    cheers,
    Matt
     
  11. Bart Leetch

    Bart Leetch

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Messages:
    207
    You must be from Mars or at least dreaming that's not nearly enough money for the lathe & the tools...first Pic.

    Well I'd just have to settle for second best....second pic. ;)

    Even then if I added all the goodies to the Liberty you'd have to buy most of the tools for me.

    Price sheet.

    http://www.turnrobust.com/PDF's/Robust_Order_Form_20121101.pdf

    I am not connected with Robust in any way. BUT I'VE BEEN TOLD THEY COULD MAKE ME REAL HAPPY BUT IT'S NOT CHEAP. Nothing this Robust is ever cheap.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  12. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    Oh, you poor thing -- having to use last year's model AB. Perhaps we should take up a collection to help you get the new model. :D
     
  13. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

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    No fair, Bart, you changed your post while I was replying. The collection will go to a more deserving person (that would be me).
     
  14. Bart Leetch

    Bart Leetch

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Messages:
    207
    I think this is about your speed at least you'd be comfortable.

    Actually I was using a 1930's Delta double duty lathe or a Jet 1014.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  15. Bill Boehme

    Bill Boehme Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    I like your see-through belt guard on the Delta. Looks like belt access is fairly good, too. They just don't make them like that any longer.
     

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