Turning Archive 2007

Subject:
Lathe features

Robert D. Macgregor
>I hope to be able to afford a lathe upgrade before I get too old to lift a tool anymore. One issue that I would like some feedback on is the relative merits of swivel-head lathes vs. sliding head vs. outboard turning (fixed head).
It seems like most of the time when I see a comment about a swivel-head lathe it is a complaint about realignment problems. Is this just with the low-cost-range lathes, or is it still and issue with a $2000 or $3000 lathe? Would it be handier to get a lathe with a sliding headstock so I can run it down to the end and turn bowls without a lot of back twisting (I think both the Jet and Delta 1642 are like this, and some lathe heads both swivel and slide)? Finally, assuming I don't have a reversible-motor lathe, how much of a learning curve is there to working on the right side of a bowl, instead of the left, in outboard turning?
Thanks,
BOB

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