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Mini Lathe

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#1 CrazyGirl


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 01:27 AM

I think I am going to buy the Harbor Freight 7x10 mini metal lathe , does anyone have this , and a little feedback if you do ,, yes it's a cheap import but for what I want to get from it I do believe it will be fine ,anywho , thoughts if you have one

#2 raildogg


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 03:53 AM

I have a Grizzly 8689 and it's sort of temperamental, due to its rough and generally inaccurate set up and machining. It will take some measure of tweaking and skilled set up to get to perform as it should. The axiom, "you get what you pay for", is in high gear here. Visit the Mini Lathe site, google that and it will send you to the right place with tips and techniques for just that model lathe. It is made by the same Chinese company that make all those tools in that price point. Good Luck Girl. Don't drop and bucks until you visit the site mentioned.

#3 Casey


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 03:54 AM

It's been said here many times by those who use a lathe daily- buy a Sherline lathe.

#4 Ace-Garageguy


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 05:51 AM

Check the spindle runout before you buy. If there's any measurable wobble or side-to-side play as you grasp the chuck, you won't be able to make accurate parts. Fine for a wooden table leg for a dollhouse, not fine for metal.

#5 Marcus M. Jones

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 06:08 AM

Bill Engwer said it best.   checked one out in a Harbor Freight store a few years back and there's alot of wobble in parts that shouldn't be

#6 my80malibu


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 04:22 PM

One thing to consider when buying a lathe is tooling most of the time that's not included and if your not buying a current version Where tooling is available it can become difficult to obtain and very costly

Edited by my80malibu, 08 April 2013 - 04:23 PM.

#7 CadillacPat


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 06:09 PM

I think I am going to buy the Harbor Freight 7x10 mini metal lathe , does anyone have this , and a little feedback if you do ,, yes it's a cheap import but for what I want to get from it I do believe it will be fine ,anywho , thoughts if you have one


I'm curious, what are you planning to do with it?



#8 blunc


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 07:11 PM

personally, I would not purchase "precision tools" from Harbor Freight and expect to be able to make precision parts without a lot of frustration and unusable results.


my experience with Harbor Freight tools is that they may (and I repeat MAY) work as intended at least once, after that it's a carp shoot.


as has been said before with regard to tools, "you get what you pay for"


best to research lathes well before spending on one and be prepared to purchase lots of accessories.


I've seen one in the micromark catalog but I have no idea the quality of it.


I have one of their "jewelers drill press" (a tabletop drill press) that I consider to be okay but not real precise so I treat it accordingly.

Edited by blunc, 08 April 2013 - 08:33 PM.

#9 Mooneyzs


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Posted 08 April 2013 - 08:27 PM

I have been going round and round on what brand of lathe I want to go with for myself.  After doing a lot of research I basically have my heart set on a Shurline and I think they are one of the top brands for minature lathes and end mills. You could also look at the lathes that Micro marks sales as well. they have two different sizes. You also need to consider on how much you are willing to spend on it as well.

#10 MicroNitro


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Posted 09 April 2013 - 12:18 AM

Make sure that the lath you buy will turn at a high RPM to turn the little parts you wont to make.