What Size Lathe Do I Need?
As a hobby, I rebuild and modify automotive cylinder heads. I'm looking to buy a lathe to make custom valve seat inserts and various jigs and fixtures for my vertical mill and head and block surfacer.
I suspect a small bench lathe can easily handle reducing the OD and enlarging the ID of valve seat inserts up to 2.25" or 2.50" OD?
However, I want to make some fixtures that would use short pieces (4" or 5" long) of 2" solid bar stock that would need to be faced, bored, or reduced slightly. So my question is, would a 9" or 10" bench lathe do the job? What about belt drive vs gear? I can't justify spending a lot of money but want to make sure I buy something that will do the job.
Your input and suggestions are appreciated.