With the best lathe in the world it's still best practice to keep the tool stick-out as short as possible.
I've heard that the craftsman lathes aren't super rigid and you have to keep the tool relatively close in to the tool holder
As mentioned, making sure the tool is exactly the correct height can make all the difference between frustration and satisfaction. One simple way to set the height is to lightly pinch a piece of shim stock or (carefully!) your 6" rule between the tool and the workpiece. If the shim is dead vertical you are on center, if the top is leaning towards you, the tool is too low; if away from you it's too high.
"A machinist's (WHAP!) best friend (WHAP! WHAP!) is his hammer. (WHAP!)" - Fred Tanner, foreman, Lunenburg Foundry and Engineering machine shop, circa 1979