Best lathe for a novice?

You're on Page 2 of 3
Go to
  • Quote:
    Originally posted by onnetz
    I have been using a drop of after run oil.....

    is kinda messy though..

    I think for a first lathe, a used cobra is the way to go..
    its what I got and it does mirror cuts..
    well, you dont want a mirror cut, lol, dont mean to be like this, but I am just setting some facts straight, although, a mirror cut isnt BAD, it just isnt ideal
  • what do you want then?
    like I said.. it is my first lathe and I haven't had it that long.
  • A perfect cut will look like a music CD. Lathes will start to cut to a mirror finish when the bits are starting to get dull. Then its not cutting as much as its pushing the metal around.

    For years the standard cutting lube has been a plain old Sharpie marker. It lubricates just right and help minimize the amounts of copper you cut off..
  • edit
  • edit
  • Quote:
    Originally posted by onnetz
    what do you want then?
    like I said.. it is my first lathe and I haven't had it that long.
    Oh, sorry m8, just trying to help you out. If you are using a carbide bit, you will get mirror cuts. But if you have a perfectly setup lathe with a good diamond bit, you will get a non-mirrored finish, it isnt dull, but when you look at one cut with a good diamond bit, it will look like a rainbow, but still not mirrored

    other things that work good, are using AE Stealth diff grease on all the sliders to get an ultra smooth operation, and trying a looser O-ring (Hudy, Integy, Xipp, not sure which others have too tight of an oring), this will cause less driver motor vibration transferring to the arm
  • thanks for the info...

    yeah it is a carbide bit..
    I will try a different bit and see if there is a difference..
  • i have a team cobra with a diamond bit and made a 4 cell out of an battery pack i had and it gets the job done very well, its not the top of the line lathe but its a good lathe if your on a budget.
    hope this helps
    lata Nick
  • I've been using trinity motor oil (yellow stuff) for a while now and it works very well. I just cover the comm before each pass and my carbide bits are lasting ages.

    Imo Carbide bits are better then daimond bits. Carbide is cheaper and can be sharpened easily if needed. Why spend $80 on a daimond bit when you can spend $3.50 on a carbide and re-sharpen it when needed. The finish isn't superior with a daimond when compared to a fresh carbide. Also daimond bits can cone your comm without you even knowing, if they are damaged; but will still give a cut that looks fine.

    As long as the comm is perfectly round and smooth after cutting, it doesn't matter what kind of finish(cd, mirror, dull) it has on it. After running in your brushes the finish is gone anyway.
  • ya, but an 80 dollar diamond bit will last for 9000+ cuts...
  • =MisFitz= NuKe - And one slight laps of concentration can burn a big hole in your pocket... It's all personal preference, but a daimond bit is by no means a necessity.
  • Yes the diamond bits last long as you dont let a bafoon borrow your lathe. There are maybe 5 guys on earth that I would let use me lathe.
  • Yes, it is all personal preference. And Yes, I have let a bafoon borrow my lather before and he broke my old, OLD diamond bit. So now, if they HAVE to use it, I throw in a carbide bit, and then give it to them
  • You can sharpen you diamond bit by the way. Just get one of those diamond dust knife sharpeners/honers. They come in various grades. The one I use is made by EZE-LAP (super fine grade). I have sucesfully restore one of my diaoned bits as wel as the club's one.
    These honers are a lot cheaper then a new diamond bit so it's probabably worth a try.
  • a diamond bit is better than a carbide being that a diamond bit is much sharper than a cabide because a carbide edge seems to break down or crack as it gets to a real sharp edge.sharper edge means less load and less burr BUT,one slip is an expensive mistake.i found that for my own personal use,carbide is more than good enough to get the job done.i use carbide and diamond cutters all day every day being that i am a machinist by trade.every time i fry a diamond tool,i feel like i just lost my dog. i will also say that yes,the cobra 2000 is a great can pick up a used one real cheap.i just really liked the integy auto lathe and i found it cheap on ebay,139.99 with a carbide bit and new,thats not bad for a beginner or an expert.

    yeah,i know that some people like oil but 1,i dont like the way it tastes when i turn the lathe on ,2 you are not taking a heavy cut and a sharpee seems alot cleaner except when your a clutz like me and get it on your fingers

Similar Threads