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Reply by DDJ

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Posted on Opinions on Lathes

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DDJ

34 posts in 741 days


#1 posted 11-02-2018 12:00 AM



We have two Jet lathes at school and I would not recommend them. The Reeves drive pulleys have broken on both of then and one of them twice. I just put some Harbor Freight pulley halves on the one on Tuesday. I call them White Harbor Freight lathes. Maybe the electronic version works a lot better!

I have had two Craftsman lathes with Reeves drives and had to work on the drive on both of them several times- besides their motors are junk lately! I looked at putting an Electronic speed controlled Craftsman headstock on it and the reviews were very poor.

I wanted to get way from changing belts or Reeves drives so I bought the Nova Galaxi. I was looking at the Electronic Grizzly lathe but it did not come in 120V. I really like the Nova, but I have contacted them several times about the touch switches which I think are a very bad design for a woodworking tool. Mine was a Beta Test Model so they sent me they sent me a new front switch housing because the plastic face bubbled up on mine and sawdust got into the touch switches and they would not work. Guess what…the new housing had bubbles in the vinyl already and I had to tape the perimeter to keep the dust out.
If you do any indexing, the Nova lathes are real cumbersome to use that way. They have 24 detents inside a little round window that you have to use a flashlight to see them. I redesigned the indexing with 72 holes and it is super now. Other than those issues, I love to turn on that lathe.

A better lathe would a Powermatic 3520, but I did not want to spend the bucks and the bed is shorter than the Nova ( 16-44 and I use it all! )

cheers, Jim

- Jim Jakosh

I bought the Nova Saturn about 2 mos ago and I really like the lathe. Pretty much the same motor and controls as thr Galaxy. Smoothe and quiet. Everything lines up nicely. No belts to deal with and very easy and responsive speed control. But like you I do not like the plastic covered on/off switches. So far that’s my only gripe about the lathe.

Dave


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