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Rikon or Turncrafter Midi lathe?

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Forum topic by Preston321 posted 02-13-2020 03:04 PM 460 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Preston321

8 posts in 14 days


02-13-2020 03:04 PM

Topic tags/keywords: lathe rikon turncrafter turning help

I want to try turning, but first I need a lathe. On Craigslist there is two good candidates. A older Rikon with 8 tools $300. Or a Turncrafter 1018vs 10 inch, like new, and accessories $345. They both have their pros and cons, but I’m new and don’t know that much. Thanks


21 replies so far

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

4681 posts in 2028 days


#1 posted 02-13-2020 03:15 PM

What model is the Rikon and what tools does it come with? A list of the accessories with the Turncrafter would help too. PSI has several sizes and packages that have different accessory packages.

Personally, if only one of them is variable speed that would be a strong pro in its favor. Knowing what you plan or would like to do with it will help too. If you are just planning to make pens for example, you don’t need much swing but if you want to do bowls for example, a larger, heavier lathe would be the better choice. Also, don’t forget to budget for some sharpening gear , unless you only plan to use carbide turning tools.

EDIT: I forgot to add…In general, I think of Rikon as being the better brand of the 2 but I don’t have either one and frankly, unless there is something wrong with one of them either will work just fine so size and accessories would probably be the deciding factor for me.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View mike02719's profile

mike02719

210 posts in 4427 days


#2 posted 02-13-2020 03:37 PM

If both of them work well for that price, you can’t go wrong. As you are just starting out, pick the best one and try turning. As someone suggested, variable speed is very appealing. When you decide this is for you and know what kind of turning you like, sell the old one and pick your next machine. When buying accessories for the old one, keep in mind that they will be used on your next lathe, so buy accordingly. Try a turning club for assistance and advice.

-- Mike, Massachusetts

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Notw

749 posts in 2394 days


#3 posted 02-13-2020 05:16 PM

I have the Turncrafter 12” and haven’t had any issues with it

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Preston321

8 posts in 14 days


#4 posted 02-13-2020 08:35 PM

The turncrafter offer didn’t turn out. the Rikon has no info, it is an older model I think, and there is a little rust. It’s a manual speed, but a pro is it comes with 8 turning tools. I have sharpening supplies, and have gotten pretty good at sharpening standard chisels. Another option is a Central Machinery it retails around 400$ and it comes with some tools. They seller is asking $350
How much do lathes retain value?

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MrUnix

7719 posts in 2840 days


#5 posted 02-13-2020 09:20 PM

Another option is a Central Machinery it retails around 400$...
- Preston321

Not sure which one you are looking at, but the $400 Harbor Freight lathe can be had for around $320 with a coupon. It isn’t a small lathe like the ones you mention though, but is considered more or less a full size lathe and is essentially a clone of the Jet JWL-1236 which sells for around twice the price. It is an excellent starting lathe, and they turn up on CL quite often for even less. If you’re instead referring to the Harbor Freight benchtop mini (10×18), it can be had for just a bit more than $200, again, using a 20% off coupon. That one is actually a clone of, well… just say it’s one of many whos only real difference is the paint job :)

For used value, the general rule is there really is no general rule :) The larger brand names tend to do better though, so a used Jet will typically sell used for more than a used Harbor Freight in the same condition. And accessories usually don’t factor much into the equation unless they are high end – like top of the line turning tools, expensive chucks, etc…

Cheers,
Brad

PS: If you put your location in your profile, users around your area might be able to help you find a better deal.

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

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Preston321

8 posts in 14 days


#6 posted 02-13-2020 09:25 PM

Thanks for the advice. I’ll probably see if the Rikon seller could go any lower. If not then I might try the larger HF one. If anybody knows of better deals, I’m around central Wisconsin

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WoodenDreams

913 posts in 552 days


#7 posted 02-14-2020 02:27 AM

Sounds like your looking at bench top models. Keep in mind Harbor Freight tools only have a 90 day warranty, you can get a 1 yr warranty. The HF 10×12 is sometimes on sale for $185. HF 12×33 lathe is $299 with the coupon from Poplar Woodworking Feb 2020 issue #251. A good starter lathe. Menards has a Performax 12” Mini on sale for $170, with 2 yr warranty, a small cheap starter lathe. Turncrafter 10” new is $359 https://www.pennstateind.com/store/mini-lathes.html#/filter:spechorsepower:3$252F4HP, 3yr warranty. If all you want to turn is pens https://www.pennstateind.com/store/mini-lathes.html#/filter:spechorsepower:1$252F5

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WoodenDreams

913 posts in 552 days


#8 posted 02-14-2020 02:46 AM

In Wisconson, you have Menards. They offer in wood lathes Performax, Delta and Rikon. They have free shipping to there stores for pick-up, when you order online. When they do their 11% rebate offers, it also applies to their online orders also. Currently the Peformax mini is on sale for $170, with 2yr warranty. They also have Rikon 70-105 $300 https://www.menards.com/main/search.html?sf_categoryHierarchy=&search=wood+lathes

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Preston321

8 posts in 14 days


#9 posted 02-14-2020 02:07 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions I’ll look into them. I like the idea of buying it new, so if anything breaks I can call support. I like the Performax lathe, and its is priced nicely. I’ll probably try it out. Menards has good customer service, and returns are easy. Thanks for all the help.

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WoodenDreams

913 posts in 552 days


#10 posted 02-14-2020 10:11 PM

keep in mind the Performax has a smaller 3 amp motor. This has the #1 morse taper. Not as poplar as the #2 morse taper which most lathes have. So you have to keep that in mind when getting accessories (centers, drill chucks and arbors). Should be good for small turns such as pens, peppermills and small bowls. The bearings will run hot, so use light cuts and keep your chisels “sharp”. best way to look at this size is it’s a starter or light duty lathe. There is a learning curve, and you may figure out you want a nicer lathe. Then you can figure out if you like turning and the type of options you want when you upgrade. when you upgrade this lathe to another, you can keep this lathe as a buffing lathe or a second. Have fun, you just may get addicted to turning, instead of playing video games. At least turning, you will have a finished project to show.

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TimInIndiana

156 posts in 781 days


#11 posted 02-14-2020 11:26 PM


Not sure which one you are looking at, but the $400 Harbor Freight lathe can be had for around $320 with a coupon.

Didn’t Harbor Freight start excluding the Central Machinery from it’s usual 20% off coupons?

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Preston321

8 posts in 14 days


#12 posted 02-15-2020 01:28 AM

I’m going to check their selection out. I hope to start turning soon so I hope they are included. If not I’ll try something else.

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

4681 posts in 2028 days


#13 posted 02-15-2020 02:13 PM

I would not buy any lathe that has a #1 Morse taper. Nearly every other lathe you might upgrade to will have a MT2 and none of the centers or the MT1 accessories you might buy will be useable. Plus there just aren’t as many MT1 accessories available.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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Lazyman

4681 posts in 2028 days


#14 posted 02-15-2020 02:16 PM


Not sure which one you are looking at, but the $400 Harbor Freight lathe can be had for around $320 with a coupon.

Didn t Harbor Freight start excluding the Central Machinery from it s usual 20% off coupons?

- TimInIndiana

I just looked at a coupon and you are right, nearly everyone of their power tool store brands , including Central Machinery, are in the exclusion list on the coupon. Good to know.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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Preston321

8 posts in 14 days


#15 posted 02-15-2020 09:16 PM

It’s still an OK deal, but I think I’ll just look around some more. The older lathes are pretty common on craigslist just need to find a good deal.

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