Turning Archive 2006

New lathe adventure

Don in Northern Arizona
>I took a turning class at Conover Workshops in November and came home lusting for a nice lathe. I have a little Carbatec mini that is OK for turning door/drawer knobs and tool handles, but it lacks a certain gravitas. I wanted my first big lathe to hopefully be my last so I decided on Jet 1642. Dominic Greco's review here on WC had a lot of input into the decision.

There is no Jet dealer that I am aware of in town, so I ordered one from a dealer in Phoenix. I got a call early in the week that it was in. Friday was the soonest I could get down to pick it up. When I arrived they could not find it. I had ordered the 2HP 220 version and all they had was a 1.5HP 110 version that was scheduled to go to a fellow in Prescott. After much scrambling to look for it the salesman and the the store manager determined that they had let the Prescott customer pick up my lathe on Thursday! Steam was beginning to toot out of my ears by now because I had just made the first leg of a 250 mile round trip to pick up the lathe, and I had arranged for some help unloading it and setting it up at home this afternoon.

Long story short, they called the Prescott customer, Jim, and he suggested that they load his lathe in my van and that I come by his house on my way home and that we swap headstocks. A Jet tech assured us that this is the only physical difference between the two lathes and that there were no warranty issues. Jim had not used my lathe yet because the 220 model comes with out an electrical plug. Since driving to Jim's house was about 60 miles out of my way, the dealer offered me $100 in cash for pain, suffering, gas, and lunch money. I took the deal and headed north, swapped headstocks in Prescott and arrived home in time to still get help unloading the lathe.

One good thing that came out of all this is that I met Jim who is a member of the Prescott AAW chapter. There isn't one in Flag, and after chatting with Jim I will probably join his chapter. They meet once a month on Saturday afternoon, so I might be able to make most them.

Hope to get things set up in my new shop so I can start turning regularly by the new year.


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