Shopsmith Lathe

Hi: I have been using a Shopsmith primarily as a sanding station for the past 25+ years. It is used occasionally for other purposes but primarily as a superb sanding tool. I have very limited experience with lathe work and I intend to begin some practice projects using the Shopsmith's lathe capability. I have been told that the lathe function of the Shopsmith is questionable. It seems to me that it should perform satisfactorily.
Does anyone have first hand experience or knowledge of the Shopsmith's lathe capability. All comments will be appreciated.
John
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On Tue, 09 Aug 2011 15:20:29 -0400, John wrote:

It's been a long time, but I did some lathe work on one. I had to drape several sandbags across the lower legs to keep it from walking. And even then it wasn't a good idea to put a large out of balance bowl blank on it. Other than that, IIRC, it worked OK
--
Intelligence is an experiment that failed - G. B. Shaw

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On Tue, 9 Aug 2011 23:55:49 +0000 (UTC), Larry Blanchard

I've done a fair lot of spindle turning and a little faceplate work on a Model 510 (upgraded from Mark 5). I had no problems or issues, but I don't have much experience with other lathes so hard to compare. I did buy the ball bearing live center for the tailstock. And the continuously variable speed is nice.
I can see where a heavy out of balance blank would be trouble (but I guess it always is). The SS is heavy, but not *that* heavy.
HTH,
Paul F.
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John - welcome to woodturning. It can be more fun than a barrel of monkeys, and just as frustrating.
You SS will do just fine. No, it isn't the Powermatic "mustard monster", but it is a good lathe for smaller projects. Don't overload it, and it should serve you quite well.
In my old woodturning club we had a couple of members that had SS lathes that the used to turn all manner of things like vases, candlesticks, pens, lidded boxes, etc. They turned out some *great* work, and they loved their machines.
I personally think it is a great choice of machines (since you already have it!) to learn about woodturning and how much time and effort you want to invest in the craft.
Robert
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I have several lathes, I use my shopsmith for all types of turning, no problems. I will often use the SS for the initial turning (roughing), outside in the driveway (faster clean up) and do the finish turning on one of my other lathes. The only problem I have with the SS is that it is low, and I have to take several breaks to rest my back, but it is still a good piece of equipment.
Joe

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Thanks for your inputs. I will give it a try.
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