John K Jordan
>>>I am new to turning and would like to know more about this used machine I purchased. I felt if I tried it and enjoyed it, I would purchase a higher end machine.
I'm not familiar with that lathe. Do you have a picture?
I couldn't find a manual online but many smaller and older lathes are similar, in that they have a motor with several pulleys, a headstock with a spindle that will somehow mount a drive center and a faceplate, an adjustable tailstock to hold another center, and a tool rest between the two.
If your lathe has all these you can certainly get started in turning with just a tiny bit of instruction.
One of the best things to do is to find a woodturning club in your area. Most have plenty of members who would gladly help you get started.
Another thing is to get a book or two - I got started with two books, Turning Wood by Richard Raffan, and Fundamentals of Woodturning by Mike Darlow.
Since your lathe may not have all the features of a newer lathe, here's a simple thing to do - find a manual for another older lathe. The first lathe I bought was a copy of the old Craftsman single-tube lathe. It was a HORRIBLE lathe - but it let me turn some things out of wood and made me decide I liked it enough to buy a better lathe! The manual for that lathe can be found online: just search google for:
wl1200 woodturning lathe manual
The first link I saw was a PDF download.
The best thing about that lathe was the wonderful manual! Unlike most, it has a fairly complete woodturning course towards the end, describing how to hold the wood and use the tools. When I got that little lathe I knew exactly nothing about lathes except they could let me make round things from wood. Using that manual I was able to easily turn spindles and bowls.
Did you get any tools with the lathe. You will need just a few basic tools to get started and some can be found very inexpensively and some for free. I initially bought a set of inexpensive but good quality tools from Sears which are probably no longer available, but I understand Harbor Freight has inexpensive tools. The woodturning club is also a good source of information about getting started with tools.
Please don't hesitate to ask questions about turning!