Which Midi Lathe to Buy ? - International Association of Penturners
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Old 05-15-2016, 04:48 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Which Midi Lathe to Buy ?

I am looking to buy a Midi lathe to set up on a rolling tool box to take with me in my Toy Hauler Motor Home so I have something to do while camping. Can you all tell me what your thoughts are on the best Midi lathes out there today? It seems like the Jet 1221vs, the PSI TCLC12VS,and the Rikon 70-220vsr are the most popular.

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Old 05-15-2016, 05:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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My wife brought home the Jet 1221vs for me. I'm loving it. Smooth, quiet and heavy. Upgraded from a M Power and the difference was like going from a Yugo to a Mercedes. No complaints to date, but might be more than one needs if only turning pens. It is always nice to keep options open.
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Old 05-15-2016, 06:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't have any experience on high end stuff but I went from a mini $89 Menards special to a midi Delta 46-460 and have no complaints with it. I'm only making pens and bracelets at the moment but it's quiet and heavy, with a reverse gear and variable speed. Works great for my needs.
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Old 05-15-2016, 07:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I have the 12" PSI Turncrafter - no complaints.
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Old 05-15-2016, 07:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If you have to lug it out and put it away, the weight will be important

Home Depot just offered to sell me a Nova Comet with a G3 Chuck delivered to my local Home Depot Store. The delivered cost was $516. I did not note the weight.
Ken Vaughan
Old Apprentice Machinist - learning a new knee in Tucson
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Old 05-15-2016, 08:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Attached is the comparison I did when I was looking.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Model.pdf (182.2 KB, 130 views)
Instagram: @louie_powell_photo

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Old 05-15-2016, 08:58 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Love my Jet 1221 vs

The Jet 1221 vs is great - but heavy. For pen turning I never have to move the belt to a different pulley. I have all the adjustment with the variable speed I need. But still have adjustment when I turn something else.
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Old 05-15-2016, 09:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I do not know what the best is. I own a 1221 vs and a 1015 vs, both handle my pen turning just fine. However, I do like the added HP of the 1221 even though I just make pens.

I do like (and I wouldn't buy another one without the vs and digital readout - but that is just me) the variable speed and I do use reverse on the 1221 for sanding - but one doesn't have to. I don't have much experience with other lathes.

I have also seen beautiful pens, and pens that I still aspire to turn with less expensive lathes (and with less options). Enjoy the research and if you can, wait for a sale :-).
Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them? Abraham Lincoln



Member of Local IAP Georgia Chapter meets quarterly in Roswell, GA
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Old 05-15-2016, 10:53 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I have a Rikon and Love it. DO some research because some of these lathes are the same they just paint them different.
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Old 05-16-2016, 12:22 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I really like my General 25-200.

Happy Turning - Tom
Tom Hamilton
Badger Woodturners
Madison, Wisconsin

Happily Turning on my Robust Sweet 16 Long Bed & General 25-200

"There is no failure except in no longer trying. "
~ Elbert Hubbard
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