Best size lathe for home use / new import

Junkman Noparts

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Thanks for all advice i don't like that everything is made in china . ok when i agreed to the deposit for $1000.00 non refundable so going somewhere else was not an option . so i talk to PM they told me that the 1340GT does not come with all the stuff that the 1236 or 1440 come with and no foot brake ( brake is no big deal ) the GT's are ten grand i should of settled with the 1236 but i went with the 1440LB . i think i did ok .
So like i said i had a cheep 1330 toolots machine it was a little on the small side for me physical size so that's why i went with the 1440-the LB part i can't afford the best . Thanks to all
 

7milesup

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We all have different needs, wants and financial limits. I am sure that you will enjoy your new lathe and PM is known for their great service.

Congrats on the new lathe.:cheer:
Also, once you get, per the forum rules (or at least the ones us members made up) requires that you post pictures. ;)
 

Larry$

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My guess is you will be happy with the 1440LB. The bigger capacity and those occasions when you'd like to have the big bore will make some things much easier. Like has been said, you can make small on a bigger machine but not the other way around. Just buy tooling and accessories as you need them. All the things you want to add mount up. It's OK to buy the Chinese accessory stuff. Some is perfectly serviceable some not so much.

A lathe and a mill make a set. I'm guessing you don't have access to a mill - yet. I hate to say it but the same choices come up again when you start looking for a mill. New/used, bench or knee, Chinese/Taiwan/European and a lot more accessories. The rabbit hole is deep!
 

macardoso

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Thanks for your input and i agree with all . I'm 60 and might settle with PM 1236 it's paid for and I'm waiting for them to ship it i think if i call Monday they might let me upgrade to PM 1440LB . If they do it's just under two grand more that's it for me .
The other thing is at my age I'm trying to justifying the expense of a 1440 size machine .I do have some legit projects on my tractor i built a front end loader from scratch for it . i need to make a drive shaft and couplers for the HYD.pump and turn down some 1 1/2 - 1 3/4 steel pins after that it's a new hobby .
So anyone own a 1236 chinese machine and regret not getting the 1440 size chinese . Thanks JM
I own a 12x36 and love the size. Granted I'm not doing truck/farm work, but I've turned some 5" blocks without issue. It was the fine line between big enough to do real work and small enough at 1000lbs to get into a basement.

The basement shop is a unique challenge for me. If I had a ground floor shop I wouldn't mind a 13 or 14" lathe.
 

bakrch

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So no one is going to stand up for the 1236 machine is it to small or to light or it' made in china (so is the 1440LB )
The 1236 w cast iron stand 1450 lb The 1440LB w cast iron 1800 lb

I have the Chinese PM1236. It makes good parts, but the quality is very, well ... Chinese and I do regret not going 1236T or 1340GT.

I also work with mostly Taiwanese lathes at work as well as old Monarch and LeBlond. The Taiwanese quality isn't magic or anything just another price point/expectation that is above the Chinese machines, yet still miles away from old American iron.

If you are expecting a lathe that will be great out of the box, you may regret the 1440LB, but if you go in knowing a Chinese machine will need a little TLC to get it where it needs to be I think you will largely be happy with it. Honestly, it sounds like you need the larger capacity with the kind of work you are doing, can always upgrade later on if the level of quality gets to you. Either way, the 1440LB is going to pay for itself and then some, it really comes down to how you feel about it after spending time on it.
 

Junkman Noparts

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My guess is you will be happy with the 1440LB. The bigger capacity and those occasions when you'd like to have the big bore will make some things much easier. Like has been said, you can make small on a bigger machine but not the other way around. Just buy tooling and accessories as you need them. All the things you want to add mount up. It's OK to buy the Chinese accessory stuff. Some is perfectly serviceable some not so much.

A lathe and a mill make a set. I'm guessing you don't have access to a mill - yet. I hate to say it but the same choices come up again when you start looking for a mill. New/used, bench or knee, Chinese/Taiwan/European and a lot more accessories. The rabbit hole is deep!
I have a mill bought last year Bolton zx45 base model and I,v added x power and 4 axis DRO and have the motors for Z and the quill and the materials to make a two speed belt drive minus the belt drive i might try to sell it and make some money on it to go towards a knee mill .
 

Junkman Noparts

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I have the Chinese PM1236. It makes good parts, but the quality is very, well ... Chinese and I do regret not going 1236T or 1340GT.

I also work with mostly Taiwanese lathes at work as well as old Monarch and LeBlond. The Taiwanese quality isn't magic or anything just another price point/expectation that is above the Chinese machines, yet still miles away from old American iron.

If you are expecting a lathe that will be great out of the box, you may regret the 1440LB, but if you go in knowing a Chinese machine will need a little TLC to get it where it needs to be I think you will largely be happy with it. Honestly, it sounds like you need the larger capacity with the kind of work you are doing, can always upgrade later on if the level of quality gets to you. Either way, the 1440LB is going to pay for itself and then some, it really comes down to how you feel about it after spending time on it.
I wanted to know what size was best for most hobby guys at home . the lathe i bought last year was a 1330 no change box 12 speed gear head reel light duty so i sold it .If it was a HD USA made i would still have it . So ordering the 1236 i know is twice the weight w stand I'd be safe hope i didn't go to big and it would be nice to have the added cash back. from the 1440 .
 

Hozzie

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There are thousands of similar machines out there. Odds are it will work for you quite well. It is certainly much more machine than the 1236 so I think you will be happy. Congrats.
 

Junkman Noparts

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A story 25 or so years ago i pass up a deal from my neighbor his dad died ( machinist with in the air craft ind.) a bridgeport mill and same color lathe like the size of a PM 1440 HD and all the tooling i could ever use $2500.00 didn't know how to move it and run power for it . well that's life
Thanks guys i will send some photos
 
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