Category Archives: Tools Lathes

Headstock Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe

Headstock Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe Photo: Headstock Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe

I added a shelf to the Headstock of my new Powermatic 3520C lathe. See photo.

All of my lathes have a shelf on top of the headstock. I have found that it makes a great place to store live centers, chucks, etc. Everything is very "handy". My students and friends quickly fall in love my headstock shelves. Continue reading Headstock Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe

Bottom Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe

Bottom Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe Photo: Bottom Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe

I added a Bottom Shelf to my new Powermatic 3520C lathe with roughly 240 lbs of stone ballast. It is really a two level shelf. With stone on the bottom and a storage shelf above. Continue reading Bottom Shelf for Powermatic 3520C Lathe

1st Hollow Form on New Powermatic 3520C Lathe

1st Hollow Form on New Powermatic 3520C Lathe Photo: 1st Hollow Form on New Powermatic 3520C

The second thing I turned on my new Powermatic 3520C Lathe was a nice cherry hollow form.

I put a high gloss finish on this piece. Gloss sells. But, it made getting a good photo a real pain. To many reflections.

7-1/2" diameter. 7-3/4" tall. Cherry wood.

The blank was a little out of balance. But, it did NOT give me any trouble. My new Powermatic 3520C lathe, handled it, no problem. Continue reading 1st Hollow Form on New Powermatic 3520C Lathe

1st Plate Bowl on New Powermatic 3520C Lathe

1st Plate Bowl on New Powermatic 3520C Lathe Photo: 1st Plate Bowl on New Powermatic 3520C

The first thing I turned on my new Powermatic 3520C Lathe is what I call a plate bowl. A plate with a little bowl in the center. I like to turn this shape and then use it as a canvas that I can decorate.

10" diameter. 1-1/2" tall. Maple wood. Lathe and hand carved rings and grooves. Red stain. Gold acrylic paint. Acrylic lacquer finish.

Turning this on my new Powermatic 3520C was as “easy as pie”. No mounting problems. No vibration problems, etc. This piece is small and easy. Thus, I was not expecting any problems. Continue reading 1st Plate Bowl on New Powermatic 3520C Lathe

Carl’s New Powermatic 3520C Lathe verses My Old Powermatic 3520B

Chick here for printable PDF

My New Powermatic 3520C Lathe verses my Old Powermatic 3520B Photo: My New Powermatic 3520C Lathe verses my Old Powermatic 3520B

I decided to replace my old Powermatic 3520B Lathe with the new C Model.

Here is my unpacking and set up experience. Plus some comparison of the B and C models.

I purchased the new model C on 2/1/2018 for a little less than the $4400 list price. Continue reading Carl’s New Powermatic 3520C Lathe verses My Old Powermatic 3520B

So you want to buy a lathe? A real lathe?

Updated: 9/10/2020. I have a lot of trouble updating this blog entry. It is to big. WordPress often crashes when I try to do anything in this post. My php buffer size is not big enough. I am waiting for GoDaddy to upgrade my web sever.

In general everything in this bog post is still valid. However, some good new 110 volt lathe options have become available. See my Revolutionary New 110 Volt Lathes blog post.

Updated: 7/8/2017. Change bars in Purple on left. Add new “Parts of a Lathe” section with link to AAW video.

Updated: 2/5/2017. Change bars in Blue on left.  Summary of updates:

1. The new version of the 10″ Penn State Mini Lathe is still my favorite Mini Lathe.

2. I do not like the new Jet lathes. Add them to the list of “Lathes I DO NOT Recommend”.

3. The new 110 volt version of Laguna Revo 18/36 lathe has won me over. Move it to my list of “Recommended 110 Volt Lathes”.

4. The 220 volt version of the Laguna Revo 18/36 is now my low cost “Recommended 220 Volt Lathe”.  It replaces the 220 volt Jet 1642 EVS that is now longer available.

5. The US economy has been stuck in neutral. Thus, lathe prices have not increased by much, if any, in the last 2 years.

Updated: 8/9/2015.  Change bars in Green on left. Add Laguna lathes to not recommended list.  They are close but no cigar.

First published on 7/31/2015.

What lathe should a newbie purchase?

Here is a long winded answer I gave to a student who had a Shopsmith and decided it was time to buy a real lathe.

For the record.  I personally own  a VB36, a Powermatic 3520B,  two Oneway 2436s, and a Penn State TCLPROVS lathe.   At various schools and clubs I have turned on Stubby, Vicmarc, General, Delta, Rockwell, Jet, Grizzly, Vega and old metal cabinet lathes.

pm_3520bIn a Nutshell

Hands down the best lathe out there in my not so humble opinion is the Powermatic 3520B with a Oneway Banjo.

The list price is still $3999 on 2/5/2017. It was the same price back on 7/26/2015.

Continue reading So you want to buy a lathe? A real lathe?