Which lathe to buy??????

Discussion in 'Newbie' started by shawn dakin, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. shawn dakin

    shawn dakin

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    I am wanting to purchase a full size lathe and have screened it down to two types(i think ). The lathes in question are the Jet 1442 and the Nova 1642. They both are in my price range and from what i have read are good quality lathes. The question is, which one to buy(pros and cons of each). I have not had the pleasure of using either one. I am hoping for some feedback from you veteran turners. Thank you.
     
  2. john lucas

    john lucas

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    That would be an interesting decision. I've owned a Nova 3000. Everything I didn't like about the 3000 they improved on the Nova 16-24. It's a nice lathe. I didn't look up the weight but the Jet is probably heavier.
    The jet has a reeves drive. Good and bad. Good in that when an out of balance bowl starts to vibrate you can move the speed dial one way or the other to until the vibrations stops. Bad because reeves drives are noisier and require maintenance to keep them running smooth. I only owned a lathe with an older reeves drives so I can't comment on the quality or smootheness of the jet version. The slow speed is a little fast for a really out of round piece of wood.
    The Nova has a step pulley. Not bad when you don't know any better. I simply turned at one speed until I got tired. Stopped the lathe and changed the pulley. It wasn't a big deal. I didn't miss it until I got a good variable speed lathe. The slow speed on this is better than the jet but you will want to stop the lathe and change speeds pretty soon after getting the wood balanced. It's too slow a speed for a balanced piece of wood.
    Both have rotating headstocks although the Nova has an outboard tool rest available. It's a hassle to use for some things. I didn't really like mine but I did manage to turn several pieces much larger than the 16" swing.
    If it was me I'd buy the Nova. Or I would recommend saving your money and getting the Jet 16" lathe. It is much better than either one of these.
     
  3. KellyDunn

    KellyDunn

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    If I got the lathe right we bought the jet for our club. I have maybe four hours on it. Its not my big oneway and I am still getting used to it. I like that the headstock can be moved so that you can work outboard on bowls. Variable speed and reverse are nice. Seemed to have plenty of power. Jimmy Clewes worked on it for a full day. His only complaint was he thought the tool rest was to high for his style of turning. and all of this is is if I have the right model in mind.
    Edit, I just made a call to capt. Jim, and we have the 1642 EVS. (He owns the same lathe)The 1442 he said is an underpowered machine and you will in not much time become to know that. He also said he considered the banjo a week spot. Also he said if he had to do it again he would get the Powermatic 3520B.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2011
  4. MichaelMouse

    MichaelMouse

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    Biased. I own the 3000, the father of the 1642. It has a great low end, turns 15 3/4" (that's 400mm) over the ways, and though mine does not, if you get the 16-24, you will be able to quarter-rotate and turn with that long banjo by using reverse. Someone always says it - the JET in question is heavier. Meaningless statement, as you can bolt as much weight as you want to any lathe. Or, if you build your own stand, just let good geometry and rigid sheet goods do the heavy work. With a 450 minimum rpm, you'll need the help with the JET.

    Hands down, the one that will go as low as 180, swing outboard so you can turn large without having to waste shop space at the other end of the lathe, and does not have a temperamental imitation Reeves drive.
     
  5. Steven Fitzgerald

    Steven Fitzgerald

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    I found the slowest speed on the Jet to be a little too fast for the initial turning of large, out-of-round chunks of wood.
     
  6. Steve Kubien

    Steve Kubien

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    I have a 1624 and it is a nice lathe. Speed changes are a snap, especially if you remove the the cover, as I did.
     
  7. robo hippy

    robo hippy

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    I would take the Nova over that Jet. One reason is the Reeves Drive. Changing belts is a minor inconvenience compared to the reeves drive, and you have more speed options on the Nova. Another is that the motor is on backwards on the Jet. It sticks out past the headstock and can interfere with some turnings, especially if you have a natural edged bowl with the wide part towards the headstock.

    If you can find a used lathe with an electronic variable speed, that is another step up. Speeds from 50 rpm and up at the twist of a knob.

    robo hippy
     

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