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Thread: Harbor Freight 10x18 Mini Wood Lathe Review

  1. #1

    Harbor Freight 10x18 Mini Wood Lathe Review

    Hey Guys,

    Long time lurker here. I recently wanted to get into turning and was looking all over the net trying to decide which machine to buy. I found quite a bit of information and ended up taking a risk and buying the Harbor Freight 10x18 Mini wood Lathe. Item #63545

    I wanted to give back to the community so I decided to make a video review of this lathe. So if anyone has been thinking about getting into turning, have a watch!

    If you have any questions about the lathe, feel free to comment or message me and I will give you my honest opinion about the machine. You'll have to watch to video to see what my overall opinion is


  2. #2
    Nice job Ryan thanks for the effort.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by tom martin View Post
    Nice job Ryan thanks for the effort.
    Thanks Tom,

    This review was intended for somebody looking into turning. I felt that all sub 600 dollars lathe were very similar after looking at them online, reading reviews and looking at them in the stores.

    I still think the HF lathe is a great entry lathe. If a new turner like myself ends up not liking the hobby, they can always sell the machine and not have a huge loss.

    If they progress and get really serious about turning, then obviously a machine like this would be laughed at

    at the end of the day, even if someone did upgrade I don't see any reason someone wouldn't keep it as a secondary lathe, buffer, dedicated pen turning lathe etc...

    so long as you are using the machine within it's limits, I was very impressed with the lathe and enjoy using it! So much hate on this little machine and I don't get it. I paid less than 200 bucks for the thing!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Bloomington, MN
    Posts
    110
    Great work on the video. I bought a HF lathe a couple years ago, and this current model looks far superior to the one I bought - it looks like it has a lot more metal than mine. I don't know the model off hand, but it was the small gray one they sold. It's gotten me by for the last couple of years, and still works fine, but I'll hopefully be upgrading to the Laguna 18/36 by the end of the month.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Wes Mitchell View Post
    Great work on the video. I bought a HF lathe a couple years ago, and this current model looks far superior to the one I bought - it looks like it has a lot more metal than mine. I don't know the model off hand, but it was the small gray one they sold. It's gotten me by for the last couple of years, and still works fine, but I'll hopefully be upgrading to the Laguna 18/36 by the end of the month.
    Thanks Wes!

    That Laguna sounds like it will be a really nice machine! I have one of their new dust collectors and so far I really enjoy it!

    This unit weighs about 75lbs out of the box. Do you recall if your version has the 1x8TPI spindle? I know for a certain time period they manufactured some odd ball spindle.

    I still stand behind my opinion, this is a good machine to get someone started with small turning. I wanted to make some mallet handles and baby rattles and so far the machine has been amazing. Can't beat the price. I also just uploaded a review of the little Disc and Belt sander combo!

    Last edited by Ryan Shearer; 01-10-2019 at 11:08 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    47
    This lathe is the gateway drug to this addiction called woodturning. I bought it 3 years ago for almost nothing (under $200). Spent a year and a half with it and finally upgrading to a Griz G0766. I estimate that that $200 purchase has cost me over $10k at this point. But don't ask me to go to rehab because I am loving every minute of it.
    By the way, I still use this late. It comes in handy as a buffer, sander, small parts turning etc.
    "Everything will be alright in the end.... If it isn't alright, then it isn't the end!"

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by scott ward View Post
    This lathe is the gateway drug to this addiction called woodturning. I bought it 3 years ago for almost nothing (under $200). Spent a year and a half with it and finally upgrading to a Griz G0766. I estimate that that $200 purchase has cost me over $10k at this point. But don't ask me to go to rehab because I am loving every minute of it.
    By the way, I still use this late. It comes in handy as a buffer, sander, small parts turning etc.
    You nailed it Scott 🤣

    I spent over 600 on tooling and chucks and felt fine buying this lathe, because I knew if I grew as a turner it would be perfect for everything you mentioned.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Bloomington, MN
    Posts
    110
    Ryan, my HF lathe is model #95607. Below is the manual. It says the spindle is 3/4" 16TPI. Like I said, it looks like that new green one is higher quality. There appears to be a lot fewer plastic parts on it than mine.

    https://manuals.harborfreight.com/ma...5999/95607.pdf

  9. #9
    Sorry for the Broken Links

    I decided to keep my OLD YOUTUBE Channel Going - Here are the new links that are working, along with some of my older videos


  10. #10
    Sander Review


  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    225
    Quote Originally Posted by scott ward View Post
    I estimate that that $200 purchase has cost me over $10k at this point.
    The G0766 is less than $2k. How did you get to $10K?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Northern Illinois
    Posts
    87
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Shields View Post
    The G0766 is less than $2k. How did you get to $10K?
    Lathe + gouges/tools + grinder/wheels + dust control + bandsaw + wood + sanding/finishing ........... 10k seems doable!

  13. #13
    I have seen a guy beat the heck out of that HF lathe at craft shows. He uses a cup chuck and just uses a mallet bang the stock into the cup chuck turns with no tail stock and when he parts off the item, he uses a knock out rod with mallet to push out the stub. The lathe is yellowed and paint is chipped off, but that lathe keeps chugging despite years of abuse. I have no idea if he has changed the bearings at all, but I have seen him using/abusing that lathe for 5 or 6 years. now. I see him making small Christmas trees at the Mifflinburg PA Christmas market every year. You can think what you want about HF tools. That poor lathe gets a beating.

  14. #14
    I just bought the larger HF lathe and it runs like a big dog. I like that you can turn the head sideways to do larger pieces. Used a 20% off coupon which brought the price down to $305. Good learning lathe to add to my shop. Go HF!

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