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nicfirth

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11 Nov 2002
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Hi,

I've never done any lathe work, but it looks fun. I would like to give it a go but before I shell out a load of money on a good lathe, chisels, chuck system etc. I want to know that its something that will both enjoy and be able to do reasonably well.

I propose getting a cheap lathe (Charnwood.net £89) and a reasonable set of chisels. If I can master some of the basic skills (from a book) I will take a class and invest in a good lathe and possibly better chisels.

I don't mind having to move belts to change speed, but I would like to know that with a basic lathe/chisels I could still learn and turn out some "nice" work. Albeit with a bit more time and effort.

Any advice?

Regards
Nic

P.s. I work in a rural area and I have already spoken to the local tree surgeon who can get me some nice pieces of green-wood for bowl turning :D
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Nic,

If you really want to go low risk, try a woodturning evening class first. These are often the only wood related class offered anyway. :cry: You'll soon find out if you want to buy a lathe, plus you'll get some initial guidence of how to turn and a good idea of what to look for in the lathe and tools if/when you come to buy your own. Failing that, I'm going to champion the classified ads in the woodworking mags again. :wink: People frequently start with a small lathe which they then upgrade, leaving a plethora of them for sale for the next crafty neophyte. Often with tools, chucks etc "thrown in". I can't comment on the Charnwood, but my instinct is that a 90 quid lathe will vibrate like crazy. Controlled turning is impossible if that is the case, and it'll put you right off.

Finally; beg, borrow or buy a copy of "Woodturning; a Foundation Course" by Keith Rowley. It'll tell you everything you need to know about what to look for in a lathe, tools you need etc etc I borrowed a copy from the library, and bought one for myself the next day. Worth every penny. Hmm, I think I'm repeating myself again... :oops:

Cheers, Jester
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Nic

Having a go before you buy is a good idea. Most colleges that teach furniture making, run evening classes in basic woodturning.

As for your choice of lathe, the Charnwood looks a bit dicey. For a first time lathe, I dont think that you can go far wrong with a Record Power DML24. It costs a bit more than the charnwood, but is a much better machine. When I started turning around 7 years ago, I bought a DML24 for £100 (special offer, when record were starting to change their colours).
I ran it for five years (proffesionaly for the last six months), and then bought a CL3. Ive now given it a new set of bearings and a belt, and cut the bed down, and use it to demonstrate at trade/craft fairs.

But beware, The lath is just the tip of a rather large and addicttive iceburg.

Cheers
Doughnut
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Hi Nic,

You may find the wood turning kits supplied by Alan Holtham of interest, they include all the pieces wood that you require to make various projects and an instructional video that shows the project being turned by Alan. They one thing that I "wood" :lol: suggest is that when your do part with your money :cry: is that you invest in some cellulose sealer and some hi-friction polish. It makes all the differance to the finished artical. Regarding what tools to buy, you only need to start off with a few basic ones.....Roughing out gauge,parting tool, scew chisel, spindal gauge and perhaps a scraper. Try not to fall into the trap of buying "sets" (I did that :cry: they look good on the wall but I only ever use a couple). Crown make very good wood turning tools that are very good value for money and are very good quality.
 

Jaco

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Morning
I agree on looking for a second hand one if possible.
Purchased mine for about ZAR500 (GBP30) It is big and heavy and extremely steady, cast iron bed about 40 years old with 2.5hp motor. The person i bought it from replaced it with an Eurasia very versatile and automatic and light in the pants!, and regrets not spending more for a Record.
Going to a class is the best before laying out cash.
:D
 
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