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Thread: Vega model # 24 wood lathe

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Mountain City, TN
    Posts
    462

    Vega model # 24 wood lathe

    I saw a Craig's list and for an "older Vega model # 24 wood lathe". Is anyone familiar with this model, and is it worth $550? Seller is located near Gate City, VA.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    8,486
    I know nothing about that lathe but what Sir Google told me.

    A search will show some comments, for example: https://sawmillcreek.org/showthread....eking-comments

    I found this on another forum, posted in 2008:
    "If it is truly a model 24, and not the 2400, it is a bench-top lathe with a 24" swing, a 1" - 8tpi spindle, a short bed, and no tailstock.
    I have been away from turning these past 2 years, but I understood that model was discontinued. If that's the one, it was available new for between $595 and $695 about 5 years ago, before it went out of production. I looked quite seriously at buying one back then. Probably would have it they offered a tailstock option and small bed extension to accommodate it.
    "

    Another person also said it did not have a tailstock which would limit its use. Also, I read that the lathe was updated at some point to beef it up. The 1" spindle would be a weak point to me.

    JKJ

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    1,309
    Wonderful guys at Vega, the factory is very near where I grew up. But they build machines like they are being made in a farm shop. Instead of tapping a hole, they weld on a nut. The bearings are heavy duty, but not tapered roller bearings that take more thrust load. Not sure if that is a step pulley or reeves drive machine. Step pulley bowl lathes are a horrible idea. Very seldom will you get the right speed to use or spin the blank without vibration. You can probably get $550 of use out if it, but it's definitely not up to modern lathe standards.

  4. #4
    I have one of these lathes and have owned it for about nine years. When I purchased it I quickly learned that the spindle was slightly bent, so as John pointed out that is a very real concern for a lathe designed to turn large blanks. I got lucky and was able to get the last replacement spindle available from the manufacturer, and have had no problems since. I am very careful to get my blanks well trimmed before mounting and have been able to turn some big blanks without difficulty (up to 18" bowls and 20+ inch platters). The lack of a tailstock is a real issue as well, as it really makes finishing the bottom of your work challenging. The newer model had a tailstock, but the manufacturer told me it could not be retrofitted to my lathe, unfortunately. As Richard suggested, this lathe uses step pulleys, which are not great to work with. I have thought about switching to a VFD drive, but will just save that money towards a Powermatic 4224b! Even with all of these limitations you can turn some big items on this lathe, and there is nothing out there to compete with it at a price point of $550!

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