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Vega Metal Lathe ?

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  • Vega Metal Lathe ?

    I purchased a brand new, in the box, Vega 10" x 20" metal lathe and original literature as part of a package deal today along with some other NOS Emco machines. The Vega was made in the 70's In Ohio and supposedly all parts were made in the USA. Everything rides on dual tubes and it's clearly listed as a lighter weight lathe (170 lbs). I've never heard of a Vega metal lathe before and can't find any reference to this lathe online. I'm aware of the wood lathes but they appear to be a different company. Anyone know anything about this lathe?

  • #2
    I've never heard of those either.Looks sorta like a wood lathe that was fitted with a compound.Probably a good quality machine,just light duty like you stated.Start slow and make light cuts until you learn what the machine's capable of.Congrats on your purchase.


    • #3
      If it frequently overheats, burns oil and rusts overnight it's a Vega.......LOL
      Opportunity knocks once, temptation leans on the doorbell.....


      • #4
        In about '75, while attending Colorado School of Trades, I received a brochure from Vega. A couple of instructors looked at the brochure and said that it looked like in might be an OK light lathe. The only weak point was the bed which was made of groung tubing. It has sleeve type bearings, don't remember it they are tapered or straight.

        Don't remember pricing, but practically all new equipment was far out of my price range. At the time a well used 10' Atlas lathe would bring $7-800.


        • #5
          I think this is the same VEGA-

          they have been making woodworking lathes for a long time- I think they briefly forayed into metal, and found it didnt work for them.

          Their big bowlturning lathes are pretty well spoken of by woodturners I know.


          • #6
            Never heard of it in metal. And since I don't see the box, are we sure it's for metal, and not precision cuts in wood? It may say metal on the box. I know this may seem dumb, but it would actually be pretty cool to chuck up a nice hardwood blank and go to town in a precision fashion.


            • #7
              It's clearly for metal. I have the original literature, specs, personalized correspondence with the owner and the price sheet to go with it.

              Replying to a few comments, the base price in 1978 was $695 with no motor. There were some options available including a steady and follower plus metric change gears. Straight headstock bushings as indicated above. I have the steady and follower but the company didn't include the brass bars or adjusting screws. They sent the original owner a letter saying that they didn't have time to complete them so he should go to the hardware store to get the parts. Wonder why they went out of business????


              • #8
                The metal working Vega has change gears as shown in the picture that garagemark can't see. I believe the bed tubes were 1.25 or 1.5 inches diameter.


                • #9
                  on my computer that stack of what I now know to be change gears looks like a chuck of some kind. I have one that looks something like a drill chuck for small objects.



                  • #10
                    I have the same lathe! I bought it for $150 around 15 years ago. It's no Monarch, but I was able to turn the rotors of my wife's Ford Escort on it. I've never heard of anyone else having one. Does yours have a chuck? I don't see it in the picture.
                    Eric Sanders in Brighton, Michigan


                    • #11
                      No chuck but I have the original mounting plate from Vega. The spindle is 1 1/2 x 8tpi so it's a very common size and easy to find one. The picture I included is just one from the brochure as the lathe has never been out of the original box. The only bad news is that it's missing the left gear cover. Went AWOL at some point in the past 30+ years. Must have been positioned on top of the lathe in the box and someone pulled it out to see what was underneath????


                      • #12
                        I can't be sure from the pic, but it looks like the carriage feed screw is between the bed rails. If it is, how do they deal with chips piling up on the screw??

                        With a 1 1/2" X 8 spindle thread, you ought to round up one of these Jacobs chucks. Great for working with small (3/4" & under) work pieces.

                        What types of Emco stuff did you get?


                        Last edited by rode2rouen; 05-06-2010, 12:59 AM.