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Lathe choice (Read 310 times)
 
scott shirk
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dunlap
Lathe choice
Jul 11th, 2018 at 6:26pm
 
I have been turning for about a year on and old Dunlap that I restored. It has been a good lathe to learn on. Mostly I do cabinets and furniture.  But I made a couple of replicated artillery shells for brass canister for myself. Well some of my artillery friends seen them and I have made over 30 and have a lot more to make.

I need a bigger lathe and have not had good luck finding a good used one.  Recently I found a craftsman with a duplicator. The number on duplicator is 351.249520.  They are asking 450 which include all tooling to go with it

What is everyone’s thoughts or am I wasting my money.

Thanks
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Don Stephan
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #1 - Jul 11th, 2018 at 7:18pm
 
There are lathes and there are lathes . . .  Same with duplicators.  I would strongly suggest finding woodturning groups in your area and ask if any members have duplicators.  Bring one of your pieces to them with a blank and ask if the two of you could make a duplicate so you see what the time would be and the finish off the duplicator.  I've never used a duplicator but I would expect their highest value in with a piece that has lots of diameter changes and with a need for accurate replication.  If an artillery shell profile is anything like a rifle casing I would think a roughing gouge and skew chisel would be a lot faster, even allowing for some skew practice.

You might also look for any videos of a lathe duplicator in use on the Internet.
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Jurriaan Kalkman
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #2 - Jul 12th, 2018 at 3:02am
 
Will your friends buy 10 each, set them next to each other and then start measuring them up accurately?

If that is the case, a duplicator may be the way to go.

If, as I suspect, they don't, I fully concur with Don, regular turning would be faster and probably leave a better finish, leading to less sanding, as well.

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scott shirk
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dunlap
Re: Lathe choice
Reply #3 - Jul 12th, 2018 at 12:05pm
 
I turned the craftsman lathe down and put an add out looking for a good used lathe.  I had a guy call me with a Powermatic 90, 110volt.  he has shield, duplicator (probably wont use), and all Robert Sorby tools and he was talking about a spindle steady

what is would be a good value for this he is asking 1800 for everything

Thank you for any information
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John Grace
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #4 - Jul 14th, 2018 at 8:44am
 
It sounds like you're comfortable buying a used machine which of course opens numerous options for you (and of course potential problems).  Perhaps I'm missing it, but I don't see where your geographically located and/or what your comfort level is for going to get a machine.  From my own vantage point, I can't help but scour Craig's List and other forums for machines I'd like, can't afford, don't need and the like.  To that end, I've seen excellent high-end machines available from northern MI, Denver, and VA (I like the Ad Hunt'r web set as a CL compilation web site).  Besides a personal seller on Craig's List, there are other forums besides here where you can connect with turners on used equipment (SawMill Creek, AAW, etc) as well as a number of places that re-sell old equipment.

That said, you may consider some other options.  When I got back into turning some years ago now I purchased a factory 'refurbished' Teknatool NOVA DVR XP lathe from Teknatool for $1600.  In recent years, new products from both Grizzly and Laguna have come on the market at dramatically lower price points than comparable Powermatics and you'll find many threads here and elsewhere on their pros and cons.  Point is, while you're willing to go the used route, and there's no problem with that, you may find with some more research a new unit within your price point.

Hope some of the above is helpful...John
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Jeff Vanden Boogart
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #5 - Jul 14th, 2018 at 9:15am
 
I had a PM90 for years.  Well-built machine.  My only complaint would be it doesn't have the speed range as newer lathes with VFD speed control.
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Don Stephan
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #6 - Jul 14th, 2018 at 5:45pm
 
You've likely already considered this, but pulleys, switches, and other essential parts may be hard to substitute if they need replacement.  If the lathe is as old as I suspect, and lacks variable speed, the price sounds quite high in my opinion.
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John Grace
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #7 - Jul 14th, 2018 at 6:25pm
 
Sorry, but another thought has crossed my mind since my initial post.  I think you would do well to review as many 'like/dislike' posts of the various lathes as you can identify.  Many of us purchase a good machine only to find out later there's one or two things we hadn't considered during our purchase.  Examples of things that may or may not of importance to you include:

variable speed drive
a sliding headstock (the one I wished I'd thought of)
over-all machine weight
motor size (and of course what electrical power your shop can support)
What do you see yourself turning...being sure your machine isn't outdated three weeks after purchase

The above is not definitive just a few that readily come to mind and may or may not be important to you.  My personal belief is to determine what you consider to be your primary turning interest and then size your machine accordingly.  There's no sense in purchasing a 1/2 HP machine only to decide you want to turn predominantly 10 - 13 bowls but you probably get the idea.  Many here can offer ready solutions if you identified your interests.
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scott shirk
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dunlap
Re: Lathe choice
Reply #8 - Jul 23rd, 2018 at 9:52am
 
Thanks everyone for the advice.  I did pick up the pw90, I went and looked at it and turned a 5 in blank down.  Everything seemed to run real smooth and worked great.  Talked him down to 1500 for everything he had (probably still paid too much but he loaded with his guys and was 30 miles from me so I took that into consideration.  Right now I am trying to figure out the year.  serial number is 8290123 and the color is gold. 110 V  I got it set up and played with it all weekend.  The speed looks like it ranges from 500 to 2100. This thing is night day difference from what I had been using and for what I am going to turn, it is going to work great. Still trying to find a manual for this specific model so I can learn what maintanence I need to be doing.


Thanks
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Dwight Rutherford
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Re: Lathe choice
Reply #9 - Jul 23rd, 2018 at 10:36am
 
Go here for info on your lathe.
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« Last Edit: Jul 23rd, 2018 at 10:37am by Dwight Rutherford »  
 
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