Lathe Recommendations

Mark Johnson

Mark
Corporate Member
I find myself in need of a new lathe as my ShopSmith is not up to turning bedposts. Since I expect to do a significant amount of spindle turning for beds, tables, finials (very small ones included), and pedestals I'm thinking that a longer bed full size is what I need. I only want to make this purchase one time so don't want to limit myself out of ignorance up front. I would appreciate suggestions on which lathes to look at, and any comments you might have on performance or reliability of the unit.
Thanks!
 

SabertoothBunny

SabertoothBunny
User
For what you are trying to do, I would suggest a full size lathe. You will need both the swing over and bed length. Here are some options and they all should have option bed extensions:

Powermatic 3520B 16" swing, 34.5" length
Laguna Revo 18-36 18" swing, 36" length
Jet JWL-1642EVS 16" swing, 42" length
NOVA Galaxi DVR 16" swing, 44" length

Brand preference plays into a lot of recommendations and reviews. These 4 are all solid machines at similar price points. It really comes down to what you want to spend and some of the little features that each machine may have. Do your research and see what will work best for you but do not skimp on the HP as that is essential.
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
If I had the money I would get a OneWay 2436 with 60" extension. No question.
Also good are Harvey and Powermatic.
All of these offer bed extensions to get you out to bed post size.
You can turn small on a big lathe but much harder to turn large on a small lathe.
 
Last edited:

FredP

Fred
Corporate Member
I have the powermatic 3520B
It's a great lathe with a 20"swing.
My choice, if money was no object, would be oneway or robust. Stubby stacks up well too.
 

bob vaughan

Bob Vaughan
Senior User
I opted for a Powermatic 3420 with a bed extension and I'm glad I did. At one point I considered the Oneway but with an acceptable extension, it was just more money than I wanted to spend. The Oneway is clearly a better built machine.

I've done a lot of turning with my extension over the years. The expense was well worth it. While I was turning things for other, I found that I could always make good money on spindles 42" and longer.

I will add that for long, whippy work, the Oneway steady rest is tops. Get an extra tool rest and tool rest holder, one for either side of the steady rest.

If Powermatic still offers the extension and leg set, one of the nice features is that one can only turn 7' long, NOT 8'. That's an asset because you have a valid excuse to avoid doing porch columns unless they are in two pieces.

Various pics below. I really hope others will show photos of their lathes and doing longer work.

1   PM3520 - 1.jpg

1   PM3520 - 2.jpg

1   PM3520 1 - 1.jpg

1   PM3520 2 - 1.jpg
 

Mark Johnson

Mark
Corporate Member
I opted for a Powermatic 3420 with a bed extension and I'm glad I did. At one point I considered the Oneway but with an acceptable extension, it was just more money than I wanted to spend. The Oneway is clearly a better built machine.

I've done a lot of turning with my extension over the years. The expense was well worth it. While I was turning things for other, I found that I could always make good money on spindles 42" and longer.

I will add that for long, whippy work, the Oneway steady rest is tops. Get an extra tool rest and tool rest holder, one for either side of the steady rest.

If Powermatic still offers the extension and leg set, one of the nice features is that one can only turn 7' long, NOT 8'. That's an asset because you have a valid excuse to avoid doing porch columns unless they are in two pieces.

Various pics below. I really hope others will show photos of their lathes and doing longer work.

View attachment 203243

View attachment 203244

View attachment 203245

View attachment 203246
Thanks for including the pictures. That is quite helpful!
 

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