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Forum topic by Reaper417 posted 01-18-2020 01:37 AM 791 views 1 time favorited 30 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Reaper417

59 posts in 2886 days


01-18-2020 01:37 AM

Hey Guys, just a quick question. I have a Jet mini lathe that has the belts to control the speed. Getting very tired of it. What would be your choice to upgrade. Now remember I am just starting out. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks you.


30 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

7719 posts in 2840 days


#1 posted 01-18-2020 02:08 AM

That is a pretty open question since we have no idea what you want to do with a lathe, what your budget is, etc… Given the lack of specifics, I would recommend one of these:

Should be able to handle whatever you want to do.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View pottz's profile

pottz

7979 posts in 1625 days


#2 posted 01-18-2020 02:23 AM

well i have the same lathe except with speed control,no problem.but as unix said what are your needs?i make pens and small turnings and spindles so it’s all i need right now.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View Wildwood's profile

Wildwood

2808 posts in 2775 days


#3 posted 01-18-2020 10:58 AM

Besides knowing what you like to turn and budget! Also what lathes have you been looking at already. So hard to recommend new or used wood lathe without knowing. Looking at Craig List only found three lathe might call to ask about based upon where in Jersey l live.

I could never recommend buying new lathe with Asian reeves drive not convinced that reliable, so more expensive electronic variable speed lathe is what your looking for versus changing belts.

Know that old Rockwell reeves drive for $650 might be worth a look if looking for 220V lathe or had source already.

That General lathe for $120 EVS but cannot find parts for so would definitely would need to know if it runs before even thing of buying. General INT (no longer in business) had trouble stocking replacement parts for that lathe. https://federatedtool.com/general-maxi-lathe-vs-12-x-17-wood-lathe-variable-speed-25-200m1/

Central NJ Craig List
https://allentown.craigslist.org/tls/d/whitehall-rockwell-wood-lathe/7035876611.html
https://southjersey.craigslist.org/tls/d/clementon-wood-lathe/7056030646.html

Someone will have to correct me but think this lathe also move belt over pulley to change speeds, but might find it easier than your mini lathe.
NJ Shore
https://philadelphia.craigslist.org/tls/d/king-of-prussia-lathe-amt-4370/7026296901.html

-- Bill

View Woodbum's profile

Woodbum

909 posts in 3706 days


#4 posted 01-18-2020 12:40 PM

Get the variable speed replacement motor from PSI. It’s about 100 bucks and change. I put one on my Jet mini and am happy with the difference it made. Or, you can buy a new lathe.

-- "Now I'm just another old guy wearing funny clothes"

View OSU55's profile

OSU55

2550 posts in 2630 days


#5 posted 01-18-2020 12:54 PM

“Upgrade”? Might be just a little more specific if you want help. Bigger, smaller, same size? Budget? What do you want to turn? Clearly you want variable speed, but there are different ways its accomplished.

View mike02719's profile

mike02719

210 posts in 4427 days


#6 posted 01-18-2020 02:43 PM

I was in your position for a few years. My old lathe was outgrown and parts were a problem. Make a list of pros and cons and your decision will be easier. Do you have the space? What is your budget? How much use will it get? Power requirement available? And as the other LJ’s asked what do you want to turn? I found the lathe not the most expensive item. Chucks, sharpening tools, gouges, scrapers, carbides, etc. not to mention turning blanks. I could go on and on. Not inexpensive, but so much fun. Good luck!

-- Mike, Massachusetts

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

1673 posts in 2371 days


#7 posted 01-18-2020 03:19 PM



I was in your position for a few years. My old lathe was outgrown and parts were a problem. Make a list of pros and cons and your decision will be easier. Do you have the space? What is your budget? How much use will it get? Power requirement available? And as the other LJ s asked what do you want to turn? I found the lathe not the most expensive item. Chucks, sharpening tools, gouges, scrapers, carbides, etc. not to mention turning blanks. I could go on and on. Not inexpensive, but so much fun. Good luck!

- mike02719


I’ve got to ask about the parts problem mentioned above. I’m always seeing comments about machinery and their parts availability. What parts specifically are you asking about??
I’ve had a unisaw since 92. Besides bearings and a motor wearing out from extended use, no other problems with the machine.
I also have a Delta lathe built in the 70’s, maybe earlier with Reeves drive. No issues with it. Works like it’s supposed to.
I also have a Powermatic 3520 lathe built in 2001. Got it second hand. It works like it’s brand new. No parts have ever been replaced except for the VFD which was damaged when moving it to my place.
So, what are the parts that need to be replaced that some people are always saying to make sure they are gonna be available?

Reaper, other than MrUnix showing a picture of an outdated Powermatic, if you plan on doing larger pieces, over 12”, Powermatic is the way to go. It’s a solid machine, quite and will accomplish anything you mount on it if you have the experience to try it. ..................... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson) www.woodturnerstools.com

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

5742 posts in 4304 days


#8 posted 01-18-2020 05:59 PM

Powermatic is the way to go. It s a solid machine, quite and will accomplish anything you mount on it if you have the experience to try it.

Jerry is spot on. I bought a PM 3520C 2 years ago … pretty much trouble-free, and it does everything I want it to do. I’m pretty sure it will be the last lathe I ever buy!

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

View Andre's profile

Andre

3093 posts in 2447 days


#9 posted 01-18-2020 06:30 PM



Powermatic is the way to go. It s a solid machine, quite and will accomplish anything you mount on it if you have the experience to try it.

Jerry is spot on. I bought a PM 3520C 2 years ago … pretty much trouble-free, and it does everything I want it to do. I m pretty sure it will be the last lathe I ever buy!

- TheDane

LOL! Pretty big price difference ? Just sayin:)

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View Andybb's profile

Andybb

2509 posts in 1244 days


#10 posted 01-18-2020 10:53 PM

.

-- Andy - Seattle USA

View WoodenDreams's profile

WoodenDreams

913 posts in 552 days


#11 posted 01-18-2020 11:51 PM

You can check out Facebook Marketing for a used Shopsmith ER-10. For a starter lathe you can up upgrade to a HF lathe https://www.harborfreight.com/12-inch-x-33-3-8-eighth-inch-wood-lathe-with-reversible-head-34706.html can save a additional 20% with the coupons the have all the time.

View pottz's profile

pottz

7979 posts in 1625 days


#12 posted 01-18-2020 11:52 PM

hmm hard to help someone who’s not participating?

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View bigJohninvegas's profile

bigJohninvegas

734 posts in 2103 days


#13 posted 01-18-2020 11:58 PM



Now remember I am just starting out. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks you.

- Reaper417

Like the rest have said. Pretty vague without knowing what your needs and budget are.
But just starting out. I recommend hanging in there with the Jet you got till you get a good grasp on
what you want to turn. If your going to stay with smaller projects, the size of lathe you already have with a Variable Speed control would be fine. But A little more time and you may want to turn 20” platters, and the big Powermatic starts looking good.

-- John

View Reaper417's profile

Reaper417

59 posts in 2886 days


#14 posted 01-19-2020 01:47 AM

Thanks guys I got the point. I only turned a little bit mostly pens and bottle stoppers. I’m kind of learning on my own so that’s about it for now. I have no problem with the Jet mini just the changing the speed belts. Pain in the neck. I don’t need anything that I will not out grow. Just something to start with and have variable speeds. I kind of figure I would use this until I am able to make bigger things and then buy my permanent lathe. Hope that helps.
Dave

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

7719 posts in 2840 days


#15 posted 01-19-2020 02:06 AM

I only turned a little bit mostly pens and bottle stoppers. I’m kind of learning on my own so that’s about it for now. I have no problem with the Jet mini just the changing the speed belts. Pain in the neck.
- Reaper417

For small stuff like that, you should not need to change speeds at all… and if you do, it’s maybe only once per project. Just how often do you feel the need to change speed?

Heck, I had an older, more or less full size lathe, that used belt speed changes and I rarely used more than two speeds – slow to get things roughed out, and fast the rest of the time. And that was on larger stuff like bowls. For small spindle type work, I never changed speeds.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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