Is Anything Wrong With This Lathe?

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TonyL

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Not knowing much about Rikon lathes I can't give a professional response. However, I read the description on the Rockler website and also took a look at the instructions manual. Seems like a pretty nice machine to me and not very difficult to operate. And the sale price makes it even more attractive. If I was in the market I would definitely take it into consideration.
 

monophoto

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Don't have any personal experience with Rikon tools. The specs look basically OK - only negative is that the motor is 3/4HP - there are other 1218 variable speed lathes on the market that have 1hp motors and that are competitively priced.
 

jttheclockman

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I too do not have any experience with any Rikon tools but looks like a nice entry in that group. $40 shipping is what stands out to me. Can be better avenues to get that same lathe. Not sure that price. being on sale. $100 off wonder is that a closeout price.
 

More4dan

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That’s quite a price difference for the neighborhood it competes with only 1/4 HP less and no reverse. Heck that’s $350 less than the Jet 1221 3/4 HP non-variable speed lathe.


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TonyL

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I live close by, and it would be my 5th. I couldn't find anything wrong with it. I am going to call Rikon and see if it is being discontinued and ask about the warranty.

Thanks for the replies.
 

TonyL

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Just got off technical support. It is their brand new model. Same 5 year warranty, etc.
It has 50% more HP than my 1015EVS (which I find a little light for pen turning).

I may get it - 18% off is hard for me to resist. It's 12 miles from where I live.
 

WriteON

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Just got off technical support. It is their brand new model. Same 5 year warranty, etc.
It has 50% more HP than my 1015EVS (which I find a little light for pen turning).

I may get it - 18% off is hard for me to resist. It's 12 miles from where I live.
One review with no important remarks. And is there life after Jet? Anyway good luck if you do get it.
 
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dogcatcher

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I have become a big fan of Rikon, my heart used to go to Delta, and my shop was filled with Delta grey. But their disaster sent me to Rikon, I now have a lathe, a drill press and a bandsaw in the shop at our vacation home. I am happy with all of them.
 

greenacres2

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I did a quick look online a few days ago. In the specs, the one that jumps out to me is the 2" of tailstock ram travel. One of the selling points on the 70-220VSR to me was the 3 1/2" travel--just barely enough to drill for the long single-barrel kits i like to turn. Before that, my Delta has a 2 1/8" if i recall correctly, and i had to hand advance to drill for a lot of barrels. But--there's a $300 difference at Rockler's current price, so hand advancing would get attractive again!!

earl
 

TonyL

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That isn't very much travel. I have 3 others lathes that are capable of more travel and a DP, but excellent point! That's the type of feedback I was looking for. Thank you.
 

More4dan

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The Jet 1221vs has 2 1/4” quill travel and the Laguna 1216 and the 70-220 vsr have only 2 1/2” travel. According to the published specs on Woodcraft’s site.

I’ve only found the full size lathes to have anything better than 2 1/2” of travel.

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TonyL

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Good point. When I drill on my 1221s, I advance the tail stock anyway. I don't like the ram extending beyond a 1 and 1.5 inches, and I only take .5 inch "bites" max - just my personal preference. Thanks for checking.
 

greenacres2

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The Jet 1221vs has 2 1/4” quill travel and the Laguna 1216 and the 70-220 vsr have only 2 1/2” travel. According to the published specs on Woodcraft’s site.

I’ve only found the full size lathes to have anything better than 2 1/2” of travel.

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Interesting...Rikon's site says 3 1/2", and i can drill a Knurl GT, Vertex, etc without moving the tailstock. It looks like a crazy amount of ram sticking out--but it hasn't wallowed out a hole yet. I keep waiting for that to happen--but so far so good.
earl
 

More4dan

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The Jet 1221vs has 2 1/4” quill travel and the Laguna 1216 and the 70-220 vsr have only 2 1/2” travel. According to the published specs on Woodcraft’s site.



I’ve only found the full size lathes to have anything better than 2 1/2” of travel.



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Interesting...Rikon's site says 3 1/2", and i can drill a Knurl GT, Vertex, etc without moving the tailstock. It looks like a crazy amount of ram sticking out--but it hasn't wallowed out a hole yet. I keep waiting for that to happen--but so far so good.

earl


I stand (well sit) corrected. I need to take a serious look at that lathe. I really would like a longer throw on the tailstock.


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KLJ

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I had the 70-220vsr for three years. It did a great job and customer service was excellent. I turned some bowls and vases that was pushing it to its size limits and it handled it well. Don't know if this will help you make your decisions.
 

Curly

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A few weeks ago I was at Lee Valley with some of the turning club members demonstrating turning to any customers in the store. One of the lathes and I’m sorry but I don’t remember which, could be stalled by turning a pen. That surprised me and the others too. I don’t know if it was a power issue to the lathe or if that particular one had an issue with the electronic controller or the motor. If I were buying one the first thing I’d do is to push it to the limits and make sure it developed full power. It shouldn’t stall when using a skew.
 

greenacres2

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Here's the data specs from the site: https://www.rikontools.com/product/70-1218vs

It says, 2 inch..maybe the documentation is incorrect?
Tony--looking at the Rikon 1218 tailstock, i'm believing the 2", doesn't look like enough housing to get much more than that in there. Dan and i were on the specs for the 70-220, which is over 3". It's also a few hundred $ more--so it depends on what you need to get out of it. If you've got spindle travel covered in another place, or don't need/want it--does that feature add value for You?

@ Dan--you really weren't incorrect, looks like Woodcraft posted a wrong number. I like my 70-220. With that longer spindle, some of the MT accessories don't auto-eject though--like the mandrel-saver--that one is a little tough to hit the edges with a knock-out bar.
earl
 

Talltim

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I live close by, and it would be my 5th.

Thanks for the replies.

Your fifth lathe!

You should write two articles for us.

First, how to explain lathe purchases to your wife. I would be pleading the fifth not explaining.

Second, a comparative article of all of the different models. I would be interested in reading both.




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TonyL

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6th (there a very small HF lathe that I bought for just applying finish). I probably won't get it..I just like tools and a good deal.

As far as Lori, (my wife of 32 years) she is an angel. Just good pickin' (we dated for 9 years since I was 15).

I like the 1221EVS with reverse (I have 2). I do own a Rikon which I also like (but I use it as a dedicated buffing station). I have a 1015EVS that I use as a dedicated blank squaring station.

I only turn pens and bottle stoppers, I am the last one suited to write any comparisons.
I also only have experience with only 2 brands. I like the Jet because of the 1HP, EVS, Reverse, and their belt ranges. I can count on one hand the number of times I had to move a belt. I feel Jet and Rikon support to be excellent. In fact, Jet even sent me replacements for parts that were not under warranty. I'm sure the other guys do the same. I think for a lathe under $800 and relatively small items they do the job. If I was a serious turner, I would go with Oneways or Robust.


I just noticed that I spelled lathe wrong in the caption LOL.

I posted the question because, the Rikon in question looked like a darn good bargain and was surprised more were not jumping on it.


My only complaint about Jet is their lousy paint jobs - but doesn't affect functionality.
 

TonyL

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I couldn't resist a bargain (we will see how much of a bargain it is). I bought it. If anyone wants to know, I will let you know what I think. My only hope is that is "better" than my 1015VS.
 

jttheclockman

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I couldn't resist a bargain (we will see how much of a bargain it is). I bought it. If anyone wants to know, I will let you know what I think. My only hope is that is "better" than my 1015VS.

What is wrong with the 1015?? I have the 1014vs which was prior to that one and love it. It is my everyday lathe. My 1220 is my backup.
 

1shootist

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I couldn't resist a bargain (we will see how much of a bargain it is). I bought it. If anyone wants to know, I will let you know what I think. My only hope is that is "better"
I couldn't resist a bargain (we will see how much of a bargain it is). I bought it. If anyone wants to know, I will let you know what I think. My only hope is that is "better" than my 1015VS.
I'm hoping you can report the Rikon 1218vs as a bargain, I have personal interest you could say. I tried to ignore the $399 price, and did for a bit. But I just had to contact Rockler yesterday and inquire as to how long the sale will be active...ends today on the 30th. Tracking shows delivery for me will be Monday afternoon.
It sounds..or I should say reads like it should be a great little lathe. I hope it has been for you.
 

TonyL

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Other than it not having reverse (which I knew about, and only use for sanding, but don't have to), I can't find a thing wrong with it.
I have 2 1221s, 1015. and a smaller Rikon, (and a HF for CA applications).
This one has more 50% more HP than the 1015, the specs and the rest (rest of the specs, not the tool rest) are all the same or larger than the 1015.
If it proves to be mechanically sound, one can't go wrong - especially for pens and bottle stoppers. To date, I have no complaints. Just remember, this isn't a Robust or Oneway. But when compared to its peers. I believe it stands-up just fine. You will probably need a tool post collar adapter unless you use the stock took rest.
For $399 (even better than the price I got, I think), I don't see any down side. 5 year warranty is nice too.

Enjoy and don't be afraid to give me a shout.
 

WarEagle90

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Kind of late to the game, but I have this lathe. Now, I’m still wet behind the ears as far as turning is concerned and have only put maybe 30 hours on it so take my comments lightly. So far, the Rikon 70-1218vs has worked great for me. It seems to have plenty of power and very quite. I purchased this particular lathe because of the 1HP motor and variable speed. It only needed minor tweaks out of the box. I’ve not needed to change the belt position, but looking at the instructions and going through the motions, it doesn’t appear to be hard at all. The lathe seems to be well made, I don’t see any potential weak spots in its construction. Overall, for what I plan to do with it, which is turn small items such as pens, bottle stoppers, ice cream scoops, etc and maybe a small bowl every now and then, I think it is a great lathe and would recommend it for anyone just starting out. Now, 2 or 3 years from now I might have a different opinion but right now it works fine.

If anyone has specific questions or wants any detail photos, just let me know. I will be glad to help.
 

1shootist

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Other than it not having reverse (which I knew about, and only use for sanding, but don't have to), I can't find a thing wrong with it.
I have 2 1221s, 1015. and a smaller Rikon, (and a HF for CA applications).
This one has more 50% more HP than the 1015, the specs and the rest (rest of the specs, not the tool rest) are all the same or larger than the 1015.
If it proves to be mechanically sound, one can't go wrong - especially for pens and bottle stoppers. To date, I have no complaints. Just remember, this isn't a Robust or Oneway. But when compared to its peers. I believe it stands-up just fine. You will probably need a tool post collar adapter unless you use the stock took rest.
For $399 (even better than the price I got, I think), I don't see any down side. 5 year warranty is nice too.

Enjoy and don't be afraid to give me a shout.
Sounds great, Thank you sir !
Like you I too was aware of it not having reverse capability. I have been using my small 7x16 metal lathe for ca applications and any reverse sanding I talk myself into .
Though I hadn't considered a post adapter for 5/8 rests..haven't even thought about that. I'm glad you brought that to my attention.
With nomore than I do this should cover it very well, I've not attempted bowls or the likes just the simplier end of turning.. pens, screw drivers, ice cream scoops and such.
I can't end without mentioning your 6 lathes...a man after my own tool heart. My son jokingly gives me a hard time for having duplicate tool types that basically preform the same task . I can now tell him I am not alone in the world.👍

Thanks again TonyL !
 

GraiDawg

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So I bought this lathe about a month ago and finally got to use it.
It’s just decided it’s only going to give me 50% power. So instead of 3500 rpm it’s 1700.
Anyone got any ideas what’s wrong? I bought it in woodcraft Ohio- yea I’m in NJ


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WarEagle90

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So I bought this lathe about a month ago and finally got to use it.
It’s just decided it’s only going to give me 50% power. So instead of 3500 rpm it’s 1700.
Anyone got any ideas what’s wrong? I bought it in woodcraft Ohio- yea I’m in NJ


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Remember, it has 3 speed ranges and I believe they come standard with the belt set to the middle range which maxes out at 2400 rpm. You have to move the belt to the highest range to get to 3500 rpm. If it is already on the high range and you are only getting 1700 rpm, something is wrong.
 

GraiDawg

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Remember, it has 3 speed ranges and I believe they come standard with the belt set to the middle range which maxes out at 2400 rpm. You have to move the belt to the highest range to get to 3500 rpm. If it is already on the high range and you are only getting 1700 rpm, something is wrong.
yea it ws running fine, then just slowed down
 

TonyL

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yea it ws running fine, then just slowed down
I am assuming that you called Rikon. It could be a speed sensor issue. If you haven't, you may want to call them. I have found their support to be very good.
I am also assuming that this is happen while it is not under load (not turning anything)?
 

garypetersen

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This is my first Lathe. I am a newbie so i can't compare it to another lathe. I do love it. I have never had give me any problems. The Max RPM i get is about 3450.
 
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GraiDawg

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I am assuming that you called Rikon. It could be a speed sensor issue. If you haven't, you may want to call them. I have found their support to be very good.
I am also assuming that this is happen while it is not under load (not turning anything)?
Yes. No load it just decided to not work right, called rikon and they are shipping me a new speed controller.
Other than that it’s a nice lathe, virtually silent and smooth - not that I’ve used a wide range of lathes
Once I have a workshop I may look at something bigger for bowls, cups and stuff


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