I saw an add for a Sherline 4000 for 275 obo. I know nothing about these and was wanting to know if that is a good deal and how useful would it be in making pens ? Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
I started out pen turning with a Taig in 2004, which is basically like a Sherline. Sherlines had a bit more options. That probably is a very good price depending on what comes with it. I lived overseas, couldn't find an affordable and quality lathe so I bought a Taig and took it back overseas in my suitcase. There are some limits on them but for the basics and segments and even kitless pens - they are possible with a Sherline/Taig.
With the 4000, you will need to look for a tool rest and other options for wood turning. I don't remember what all I purchased with it but it was about $200 in extras to get to pen turning.
You will quicky hit the limits of the lathe making pens on the 4000. Its a decent price if you want to start making small parts, Metal or wood, for your pens but its not really a good lathe for making pen bodies. They make an ER32 collet chuck for it that would help hold turned blanks. They do make hundreds of accessories including a wood rest for it. Drilling on the lathe is a chore if your trying to drill anything with some depth as you run out of room from the short bed. If it has lots of accessories its an even better buy,
Thanks for the replies, hitting the limits quickly usually means spending more money in the end instead of just going ahead and getting the better one in the first place. So with this information I think I will wait and see what happens, it looks to be in like new condition by the pictures, and it is set up for wood now. They said it needs a 3 jaw chuck to turn metal so I need to see how much that would cost.
Taig makes a 3 jaw chuck that fits 3/4-16 threads that is cheaper than The Sherline brand ones. Sherline accessories are not cheap. You might luck out and find a used one on Ebay if you waited and watched long enough. I have had Unimat, Taig, Sherline and many other lathes. I do not recomend Sherline as a pen making lathe. I had the longer bed version and made it work but your constantly adapting. The (0) morse stubby taper is problematic if you try and use a 1/2 drill chuck for drilling.