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Lathe brand

my husband wants to get a lathe for Christmas + Birthday and I was
wondering if somebody has experience with that and can recommend a
certain company…

Edith Schneider Jewelry
P.O.Box 52001
Palo Alto, CA 94303
(650) 813 9755

Hi Edith. Do you mean a Jeweller’s lathe (i.e. small lathe with
around 6" between centers x 2" swing over bed) or something larger?
I do not have any experience with larger lathes but I do have a
circa 1969 Unimat Jeweller’s/Watchmakers Lathe that was made in
Austria. It is a fine little lathe when used within it’s capabilites
but I cannot recommend it without saying that parts are getting hard
to come by and for the same money, or less, you can get a brand new
lathe with more features from one of the Asian Manufacturers. These
are readily available for around $350-$450 without tooling on eBay.

Regards, David

Hello Edith,

Is your husband seeking a lathe for woodturning or a lathe for
jewelry-making? If he seeks a woodworking lathe, I will gladly pass
along my husband’s recommendations, as he has a couple of decades’
experience as an amateur woodturner. Please feel free to email me
off-line for more


my husband wants to get a lathe for Christmas + Birthday and I was
wondering if somebody has experience with that and can recommend a
certain company..... 

Hello Edith,

If your husband is looking for a good general purpose benchtop lathe
I can recommend the Sherline lathe quite highly. It’s not the
cheapest around but the quality is first rate and the accessories can
have you doing things well beyond your imaginings.

Sherline has an extensive website at There is a lot
of documentation there that is well worth browsing through.

If you or your husband has any questions I’d be more than happy to do
what I can to answer them. Please feel free to contact me offline.

Trevor F.


The two most favored American brands are Sherline and Taig. Many
hobbyists who are willing to settle for a lower quality go with the
Chinese lathes you can get at Harbor Fright. Proxxons, Prazzi, and
Levin are all beautiful equipment, but go from high priced to

We sell both the Taig and the Sherline units and offer them at a
discount from list. My general suggestion is if you are working in
metal go with the Sherline. If doing wax or wood go with the Taig.
Not that the Taig will not do metal, but the Sherline has more
capacity and a larger range of accessories. Feel free to call if you
want to discuss it. I am in the store on Tuesday and Saturdays.

A2Z Metalsmith Supply Inc
5151 S Federal Blvd Ste I-9
Littleton CO 80123
720 283-7200 Phone
720 385-2118 Fax

Edith, your choice in lathes will depend on the type of work he
would like to preform. If it is jewelry related and will be mostly
metal work or turning waxes I would recommend going with the Taig
Lathe it is sturdy and has a wide range of tooling and it is cheaper
than Sherline which is a good lathe also. If he is more interested in
woodworking and turning waxes I would recommend a Jet mini-lathe.



Are you looking for a miniature lathe for jewelry work, or a larger
floor model lathe for more serious metal turning? For a miniature
lathe I HIGHLY recommend the Sherline products. For the money, there
is no better quality machine with as many readily available
accessories. You can view all of the Sherline products at and you can purchase the pieces from other places at
a slight discount. If you need recommendations on where to purchase,
just e-mail me and I will let you know. When purchased from
secondary sources, the machines are simply drop-shipped directly
from Sherline so you get the latest technology.

Daniel J. Statman, Statman Designs

Just this week, Phil Poirier wrote a good description of how he uses
lathes in his jewelry business. He has five or six lathes, ranging
from bitty to really large. His words are found on, click on discussion group.
Phil has taught a class on micromachining for BonnyDoon. He knows
more than anyone, except maybe Lee Marshall, about using
unconventional tools in jewelry making, and his work is outstanding.
See for some pictures of the fabulous
Damascus rings he makes.

I’m a fan, obviously.
Judy Hoch GG