• This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more.

New Guy, New Machinest, Looking For A Start

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


Active User
Active Member
Nov 9, 2013
This is just my $.02, so don't take it for anything more than that. I'm on my 4th lathe, and finally have something I will be happy with for a long time. I started small, and outgrew it almost immediately... twice. I understand space and budget constraints, but take your time and get something you will be happy with. It's worth it. The joy should be in the projects you make, not getting a machine to do something it was never intended to do.



Active Member
Active Member
May 16, 2015
Plus 2 on being careful on gun mods make sure to get some good measuring tools and always measure multiple locations and keep those chips flying


Active User
H-M Supporter-Premium Member
Dec 22, 2014
WELCOME! My advise it take it completely apart and put it back together, cleaning all the cosmoline out of everywhere. Lightly remove with files, and stones all the rough edges you find. AND.....When you move up to a larger lathe, do not sell this one. It is great to have a smaller lathe in the shop so you don't need to tear down a setup on your larger lathe to make a little part or something else. I have one mounted on a piece of plywood that I can use in the shop or my reloading room to turn brass and other small operations.


Registered Member
Nov 29, 2015
Gents, I am new to machining, but I would like to start.

I was at Harbor Freight today an was looking at the 7x10 they have in the store.

I was looking on line about it and it brought me to this forum. Most forums chalk this thing up as pure evil, but I like the can do atmosphere here.

I understand there are better units out there, but as a starter, and available locally, this seems to be it.

I have a project in mind, which is converting a Brass framed kit 5 shot Colt .36 BP pocket pistol to 5 shot 22 Mag... 22 barrel liner is already installed, I need to cut it off and crown the muzzle, then counter the forcing cone.

The biggest trick I think will be boring the cylinder to sleeve it from .36 down to the .22Mag. I already have the 0.375 OD x0.065 wall DOM steel tubing for the sleeves, I just need to turn down the OD to fit in the bored cylinders.

Will the 7x10 be up to a task such as this?

So.... is the HF 7x10 good enough to start with for this type of project?

Thank you for your input.
I can't say I've used the HF little machine but before you invest there think about service and or parts three years down the road... HF will not support it neither will Central Machinery. They also can take 3-13 weeks to deliver your "made to order" lathe. Besides, for that amount of money you could get a heavier, well built US made machine where you could do more than in a 12" space. My story, I got an old Cincinnati 12-1/2" x 30" for less than $400.00 in an online auction and recently got a CNC Bridgeport Mill for less than $1500.00. Now I'm having fun at home. Best wishes on your purchase.

Reverend Bow

Registered Member
Nov 26, 2016
Thanks for all the comments.

I have been enjoying my new lathe, and learning some things, which is why I picked it up in the first place.

As far as the current project, it will be tested before I trust it
[5] [7]