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Charnwood W880 Lathe - are theya good 'step up from beginner' lathe

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Adam W.

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Hope handles are made in Brentwood, Essex and the tools are crown.

I'm hoping that Vicmarc is made in Australia, as that's what it says on the castings and chuck. Otherwise it it would say assembled in Australia and the parts could come from anywhere.
 

Mark Hancock

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I have a habit of finding out where the item is made and never buy Chinese tools.

I'd rather support European, American, Australian or British small scale industrial manufacturing as much as possible, so ended up with a Vicmarc lathe .....
I believe Vicmarc have been getting their lathes cast in China for a number of years now.
 

Adam W.

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If that's the case, I'm disappointed. But I'd like to see concrete proof of that from Vicmarc and not just opinions or speculation.
 
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Phill05

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"Adam" I bought a Vicmarc because I wanted a large turning capability over the bed and only ever wanted to buy one lathe in my life. Judging by the build quality, it'll last my grandchildren out too and all the accessories and spare parts are easy to get here.

If that's the case, I'm disappointed. But I'd like to see concrete proof of that from Vicmarc and not just opinions or speculation.

So what changes your opinion surly if you have everything in that lathe why should you now be disappointed if it is from China.
 

Droogs

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for political reasoning rather than manufacturing or engineering excellence, probably
 

Adam W.

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@Phill05
Because my homework wasn't as good as I thought. I'm not dissappointed with the lathe in any way, shape or form.

for political reasoning rather than manufacturing or engineering excellence, probably
That's about right on the money.

I'll add:

I want to maintain employment for people in those places and don't want to contribute to the economy of a country like China which exploits its workers, uses slave labour and persecutes peaceful nations like Tibet.
 
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Phill05

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Don't look on it as your homework wasn't as good, your homework was good if the lathe performs to your expectations and better.
If it was *r*p then yes blame yourself or wherever you got it from.
 

Mark Hancock

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If that's the case, I'm disappointed. But I'd like to see concrete proof of that from Vicmarc and not just opinions or speculation.
The information came from a Vicmarc agent who knows Vic (owner of Vicmarc).
It's highly unlikely any manufacturer will disclose publicly how they make their product and where they source their materials from.
 

Distinterior

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Charnwood do openly state on their website that they source their products from the Far East.....and that the research & development work is done here in the UK.

You can read into this statement what you will, but this is from their website......

"The heart of the business has always been in designing new products, striking a balance between offering the latest technologies and maintaining the tradition of high quality our customers have come to expect from the Charnwood brand. We still do the research and design elements of the process here in Leicester, but most of our manufacturing has now been transferred to low cost centres in Asia, where we are able to produce competitively priced, high quality machinery as demanded by the British public."

I have a Charnwood cast iron topped router table that I bought new from them a couple of years ago....Its now usable after quite a bit of fettling but out of the box, the castings were poor and the overall quality is not particularly good.

It was cheapish though, so you pays your money and you takes your chance.
 
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Droogs

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"where we are able to produce competitively priced, high quality machinery as demanded by the British public " I wonder why they don't actually do it then?
 

Distinterior

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"where we are able to produce competitively priced, high quality machinery as demanded by the British public " I wonder why they don't actually do it then?
Because if they did, the price would need to increase substantially and in all likelihood, they then wouldn't sell as many to the less demanding customers. If they can sell enough of the items at the quality it is being produced at now, why spend more on developing higher quality items and risk not selling as many due to an obligatory increase in price...??

It all comes down to supply & demand.

My expectations of what I was purchasing when I bought my router table, were realistic. I got pretty much what i was expecting.....Now, if I'd paid 3 or 4 times the price and it had Felder or Hammer written on the side, I would not of been happy....
 
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Droogs

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@Nick Laguna UK they're just down the road from you aren't they? Can you go down there and give them a good kick up the rear and explain quality to them
 

Nick Laguna UK

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@Nick Laguna UK they're just down the road from you aren't they? Can you go down there and give them a good kick up the rear and explain quality to them
Hi Droogs,

Charnwood are the Laguna sole importers - we all work together in the same premises / warehousing - selling both brands through slightly different retail distribution networks that also have many crossovers.

I joined Charnwood to bring Laguna into the UK, as their logistics and import / machinery experience are superb. Not to mention they had a few £mill in the bank to make it work as needed..

When we are back to normal ref. Covid and if you want, you are welcome to visit us all including the Charnwood Directors as I know you often comment on them and that's what a forum is all about, but I also know they are very proud of their brand and do their utmost to ensure quality is high vs price. I'll pick you up from wherever you are if you want & if needed we can also do a an overnight if needed- serious

Ha, hope that doesn't sound like I'm an assassin or wierdo lol

Cheers,
Nick
 

Nick Laguna UK

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Ha oh damn, just realised you Edinburgh - scratch my drunken offer ;)

OK - Next I'm Scottish I'm happy to call in to chat if you want as long as I get a cuppa (y)
 
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clogs

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I fear a lot of cast products are machined GREEN......then like wood they will change shape slightly......
nobody can afford casting laying around for a year or so to settle.....
I believe General Motors, US.... had the engine blocks cast and stored outside for two years befor machining......
mostley castings move beause there's not enough material or it in the wrong place....saving on metal......mmmmm
but machining nowadays should be quite easy to get right.....at least once the first one is done......
It's just nobody cares about anything except massive proffits......
If people used the law FIT for Purpose the sellers would soon get things change for the better or go broke....at least thats when they are up to thier a*se in returned junk goods......
the probs are ours for not paying enough and/or putting up with the overpriced rubbish they sell.....
Mind it must be in our blood/mind set as it were, look at all the *arp we used to buy "Triumph/BSA" before Honda motorcyles turned up and proved it could be done........
that's why I prefer to buy older than newer .....at least on big machines.......
 

Droogs

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Ha oh damn, just realised you Edinburgh - scratch my drunken offer ;)

OK - Next I'm Scottish I'm happy to call in to chat if you want as long as I get a cuppa (y)
There will always be a cuppa' and some homemade bannanabread/gingerbread or a nice choccy biscquit here with your name on it Nick
🍰

When the lurgy is done and dusted, i would love to come down and visit
 
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J-G

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I fear a lot of cast products are machined GREEN......then like wood they will change shape slightly......
nobody can afford casting laying around for a year or so to settle.....
I believe General Motors, US.... had the engine blocks cast and stored outside for two years befor machining......
I'll second that! - I used to work for Matrix & Alfred Herbert, both of which had basic cast machine beds in outside store for many years. The logistics of holding stock for future potential sales is an expensive option but imperative for top quality product.
 
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