lathe, first

What are the points to look for in a lathe and what is the price range of a solid unit for leg turning and maybe bowls. I did some searching and the ranges are low, a few hundred, so I know there must be important features to consider. Thanks for any help.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (BErney1014) wrote:

First things first - head over to rec.crafts.woodturning. A nice bunch of folks and very willing to offer help.
When considering a lathe, you first have to decide on capacity - for current needs/desires and a short way into the future. How long and how large a diameter turning are you wanting to turn? Lathes are rated by "swing" and "between centers" capacities. Swing = (distance from the spindle center to the lathe bed) x 2. Another way to think of it is the maximum diameter turning the lathe can make. Swings are generally 8", 10", 12", 14", 16", 20" & 24". Between centers is the maximum distance the centers can be separated. This distance would equate to the maximum length of a single section of turning - you could join turned sections to effectively make longer pieces. This distance can be as short as 15" or so up to 36" in standard configurations. Many lathes also accept bed extensions so you can increase the distance between centers.
Second factor is money. How much do you want to spend *total* to get into turning? The lathe is just the beginning as you'll need, at the very least, a basic selection of chisels and gouges.
Post your message over on the turning group with your size needs and budget.
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Owen Lowe and his Fly-by-Night Copper Company
Offering a shim for the Porter-Cable 557 type 2 fence design.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (BErney1014) wrote:

I forgot to mention in my previous reply that once you figure the capacity and budget you can then start looking at features and design strengths in that list.
--
Owen Lowe and his Fly-by-Night Copper Company
Offering a shim for the Porter-Cable 557 type 2 fence design.
  Click to see the full signature.
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