I've had both. I had one of the first Taigs. I returned it as it just seemed cobbled together. Looking at them now, they do seem better but I don't believe they're near the finished product of the Sherline. You can make good products with a Chinese lathe, Taig or Sherline. With the Chinese lathe (unless its from Micro Mark) the first thing you'll need to do is disassemble it, relube it and then reassemble it paying attention to tolerances. The Taig will need assembly and won't have the range of accessories of the Sherline. The Sherline has many accessories that you'll "need" for that random project. I currently have a Sherline lather and two milling machines. If I were to start from scratch without prior experience, I'd get the Sherline.
With my limited experience, if I were to replace my Sherline, I'd go the Chinese lathe. If you question the HFS lathes and milling machines, check out Bill Davis's Keeling and Clayton car at http://www.modelcars...g +and +clayton
I know I don't have the skill to do it on my Sherline.