• This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more.
  • PLEASE SUPPORT OUR FORUM - UPGRADE YOUR ACCOUNT HERE!
[4]

Delta Homecraft Or Delta Wood Lathe - Best Most Available Model

January Project of the Month [3]
[10] Like what you see?
Click here to donate to this forum and upgrade your account!

oldschoolcane

Steel
Registered Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2016
Messages
28
Likes
4
#1
I enjoy wood working and using my current Jet lathe, but would like to stretch out my options with a vintage Delta wood turning lathe. Seems like many of these lathes are sold as parts separate from the beds, can anyone with experience with these lathes tell me which model to look for? The 10 & 11",s seem right but I am confused by the designation given to these machines. I need to buy a base that I can also find the head stock and tail stock for. Should I consider the 1950's Homecraft models?
Thanks,

Tim
 

Dave Smith

Active User
H-M Supporter-Premium Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2013
Messages
1,039
Likes
212
#2
Tim---I take it that your Jet lathe is a metal lathe---I started out as a hobby woodworker first, and then wanted to make my own woodworking machines--so I found out that metal working machines are a total difference in tolerances and precision-----I made a big woodworking lathe before I got into metalworking so it is crude and is on a 6"X6" 7' long I-beam--- but can turn a 30 or 32" table leg----I do have a Delta wood lathe that someone put 1" risers on headstock and tailstock and is mounted on a homemade frame 1" thick by 4" solid bar welded in a rectangular 5" by 5' long(I'll try and take some pictures tomorrow)---anyway this works real good and I can always use my big lathe for bigger or longer pieces----What I am trying to say that a wood lathe is a very simple machine to make---I also ground my lathe tools out of old files and other hardened scrap items-----I have no idea why they made the base for the Delta so heavy, but it doesn't move or shake while turning---the old motor is underneath on a pivot shaft so it can move to align belt on step pulley, and weight of motor keeps tension on the belt---very simple but works perfect--any old 1/4 to 1/2 hp motor will work fine----parts for making a wood lathe are easy to find, and you can build it to fit your needs-----If you lived closer I could help you make it since I have a lot of extra materials-----Dave
 

Tony Wells

Former Vice President - Administrator Emeritus
Staff member
H-M Supporter - Commercial Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2011
Messages
7,000
Likes
8,055
#3
Wish you were closer. I have a classic 12 x 36 Delta I am selling. I haven't built the stand for it yet, but it's ready. Might ship ok without the stand if you're interested. Good old cast iron. Hate to get rid of it, but I don't have time to enjoy my woodwork, nor a good place in the machine shop.
 

VSAncona

Active User
Active Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2011
Messages
276
Likes
85
#4
I owned a 1950 11" Delta Homecraft lathe for several years. I got rid of it when I picked up a model 1460 12" Delta lathe. The Homecraft lathe is definitely lighter-duty than the 1460, but still adequate for spindles and basic turning. There were at least a couple of different versions of the Homecraft lathe, but on the one I had, the bed was smaller than the 1460, and the headstock and tailstock castings were zamak or some sort of alloy material. The tool rest base is a weak spot on these lathes. Mine was broken when I got it.

The 1460 is heavier all around. All the main parts are cast iron and the bed is wider and taller overall. For a 12" lathe though, it's still a little on the light side. I don't do a lot of wood turning, so it's fine for me. But if you're big into turning bowls, I would skip the Delta and get something with more mass.
 

chips&more

Active User
Active Member
Joined
Mar 19, 2014
Messages
2,346
Likes
1,668
#5
Many moons ago when I was in high school wood shop. We used a Powermatic 90 wood lathe. It took a licking and kept ticking kinda story. That steered me later in life to get one. May now not be the best choice with the new companies and designs. But it’s not the worst either. I have had it for about 40 years now and it has been maintenance free. And I could now sell it for more than what I paid for it! Finding tool posts with a 1 1/8” stub was a pain for awhile. Then I got the knack of making my own. Good Luck in your hunt…Dave
 

oldschoolcane

Steel
Registered Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2016
Messages
28
Likes
4
#6
Thanks for all the replies, this is very helpful. The Jet wood lathe does about all I need it to do but I'd just enjoy using the older vintage lathe. For the light duty wood turning I'd be using it for about anything would work but I'd like to own a good model.
 
[6]
[5] [7]
Top