Metal lathe question???????
I'm about to buy a metal lathe. I would like to pick up a small metal lathe to make miscellaneous parts for the "Z" project. (Check my gallery to see what I'm doin' if you like). I have limited shop space so I want a lathe that's not to big, but big enough to make what I need. Not too expensive but in good enough shape to make decent parts.
Many years ago I had a big South Bend lathe 8 ft. bed with enough throw to turn truck drums. I could handle just about anything with that one.
I guess what I'd like to know is.... buying a smaller lathe what should look for other than wear on a used lathe? I've been told I won't be happy with the real small benchtop lathes like the 20" bed units U see in catalogs for 300 to 500 bux. I'm hoping to find something in the 1,000 or so range.
There is a machine sales about an hour from here and i'm probably going to run over there later this week to see what I can see. Just wondering what to watch for, what brands to watch for or avoid, stuff like that.
Thanks for your input.
BTW: I plan to make small parts for the car like bushings and such. I imagine as I get further into the project there will be many other uses for the lathe that I haven't considered yet. So, I don't want to buy too small and end up farming out work that I'd rather do myself.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.