My friend Jim has been busy with his new mini lathe making pens and other turnings. His enthusiasm became infectious. It did remind me that I had a new shop without a lathe! I asked Jim to show me his lathe and help me to turn a pen. I promised I wouldn’t buy a lathe until we got together. Saturday morning we spent some time together, and this was the result.
The metal parts are from a kit. The walnut turning is my work. With the cool system tools Jim had, it is pretty straight forward to produce an awesome product.
True to my word I did not buy a lathe until I played with Jim’s Rikon mini-lathe. The Rikon is really nice for small work. It is super accurate and exellently machined. But I had in mind something more “industrial” for the shop, particularly something that would fit in with my old Delta/Rockwell collection of tools. By my good fortune, an excellent old Rockwell 46-450 lathe was available on KSL.com classifieds. The lathe was made in 1974, and has seen very little use. Paid about a dollar a pound!