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old and new

by alex0295
posted 07-09-2017 02:29 AM

10 replies so far

View Woodknack's profile


13503 posts in 3258 days

#1 posted 07-09-2017 05:09 AM

The Rikon is good but according to one magazine review the motor hp is way overstated. Jet is good. I own the Delta and it is great. So Jet or Delta.

-- Rick M,

View Wildwood's profile


2899 posts in 3012 days

#2 posted 07-09-2017 01:07 PM

Welcome to the message board!

Think anyone of those lathes will serve you well. There are lot of tool brands on the market today that were not around twenty years ago. Don’t know what to tell you cause don’t know whether want to turn mostly spindle or bowls or budget.

Sharpening turning tools takes a light touch but friable grinding wheels are best for all types of turning tool steels. Friable wheels come in blue, pink, and white might find them locally Camel & norton seem to be biggest suppliers for woodturners. I use norton 80 grit 3x K hardness for sharpening and 46 grit for changing bevel angle & repairing tool edge. Cannot buy friable wheels in my town so here are the vendors I use.

You can get a free catalog from Packard Wood works and Craft Supplies calling their toll free numbers. See See Packard linked above.

You might consider a sharpening jig if not consistent with your sharpening. Regardless of what folks say not a good idea to blue turning tools when sharpening no matter what kind of steel.

If need and want inexpensive tools check out Harbor Freight or Penn State Industries.

-- Bill

View alex0295's profile


2 posts in 1200 days

#3 posted 07-09-2017 11:32 PM

Started turning at 16….tuned on and off (mostly off) for50 years. I have a 50 year old cast iron lathe with a dead center and a drier motor with 4 step pulley. OK so now retired and want to move up. Read about the PSI lathe, Riken lathe(70-2200 THE Jet 1221 the delta 46-460. I need support stuff (sharpening stuff, tools, chuck etc. Like to turn bowls and candle sticks. Seems like in my research everyone seems to like the Delta. They like others but no one seems to complain about the delta. Seem like a reasonable choice? The PSI commander is less $, the Jet is more $. I believe the Delta is variable speed and reversible. Does my logic make sense? If so are some places a better bet to buy some? Look forward to feedback….. thanks guys (and dolls).

View Hockey's profile


182 posts in 1290 days

#4 posted 07-09-2017 11:53 PM

Alex, let me throw another one in the mix to consider, the Nova Comet II. It can be purchased new for under $450. I don’t own one, but I considered it with the Rikon, PSI, Delta 46-460 and the Jet 1221.

View WhoMe's profile


1568 posts in 4121 days

#5 posted 07-10-2017 02:38 AM

Can’t tell you much about your choices as I only have experience with the jet and nova. The jet is a full step above the nova in power, good machining and mass but also costs more too. The jet is also veritable speed and reversible.
As for sharpening, if you are going to use a grinder, get a slow speed one with the friable wheels. Stay away from those grey wheels. Heat is the enemy of steel and if the steel is turning colors, you are ruining the temper of the steel.
Look into a wolverine jig and the vari angle jig or make your own. They work really well and once set up, provide consistent results.
As for tools, if you have the budget, you can’t go wrong sorby, crown or an equivalent level tool. If you have a more modest budget, I see PSIs Benjamin’s best tools always get great reviews. Better steel stays sharper longer and thus requires less sharpenings.

-- I'm not clumsy.. It's just the floor hates me, the tables and chairs are bullies, the wall gets in the way AAANNNDDD table saws BITE my fingers!!!.. - Mike -

View Wildwood's profile


2899 posts in 3012 days

#6 posted 07-10-2017 11:01 AM

Every lathe you mentioned made in China including that Nova, differ a little in size and weight. As with anything made in China could have issues or run fantastic right of the box. If you like the Delta go ahead and buy it.

Nova has couple less expensive chucks that will fit the Delta or the others lathes mentioned. Nova chucks often on sale so shop around. Own two Oneway chucks but if was in the market would buy a Nova chuck over those sold by PSI just my personal preference.

Thought you mentioned already had a grinder! I been using a 6” high speed gringer for more than twenty years using friable wheels (80 & 46 grit). If cannot buy friable wheels in your locality check out links provided. When I upgrade grinders will get an 8” and don’t care if slow or fast.

Been using the wolverine basic systen with vari grind jig almost as long and you can buy them from fore than vendors already provided. Since familiar with PSI they allso sell a wolverine clone system.

When it comes to tool buying keep it simple buy tools as you need them. Both Craft Supplies and Packard will give you a discount if buy more than one tool at a time just ask when ordering. Both of those vendors also carry house brands that are very good tools. PSI has lower prices on tools but shipping not always the cheapest.

-- Bill

View Thunderhorse's profile


35 posts in 1219 days

#7 posted 07-10-2017 01:56 PM

I wore my Rikon out but it was a solid machine, used when I got it and constantly biting off more than I could chew in terms of capacity. I believe the Delta is a little big with a little more power than the others. I have a Jet Bandsaw but not familiar with the lathes they make.

-- Fear is a Liar

View Dustin's profile


707 posts in 1618 days

#8 posted 07-10-2017 04:34 PM

FWIW, I’ve got the Delta and love it. Quiet, smooth, well-aligned, nice and heavy for a midi-lathe. I’ve turned pens, bowls, tap handles, and most recently a pedestal for a shaker candle stand I built. I’ll say that I like it enough that I’m certainly eyeing the bed extension for it.

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

View TheDane's profile


5865 posts in 4541 days

#9 posted 07-10-2017 05:40 PM

I had a Delta 46-460 for about 5 years … sold it when I bought a bigger (20” swing) lathe.

The Delta is a solid performer … we have 4 of them in the woodturning studio where my club meets, and they have had the crap beat out of them by students with no problems. You can find a cheaper midi-lathe, but IMHO you can’t find a better one than the Delta.

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

View Madrona's profile


123 posts in 1773 days

#10 posted 07-10-2017 05:53 PM

The Jet or Delta would be my preference. I also would consider watching Craigslist or other local venues for a used full-sized lathe. Often we start small only to find we LOVE this hobby and want to turn something bigger. Plus, you can always turn small on a big lathe but not the other way around.

I’ve been using Benjamin’s Best chisels from PSI and have done some good work with them.

An 8” grinder with a Wolverine jig is the only way to go for sharpening.

Watch YouTube videos until your eyes go blurry then watch some more. Captain Eddie Castelin is a favorite, you will learn much from him. Start with his old videos, first, and just go through the list.

-- Living In The Woods Of Beautiful Bonney Lake, Washington

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