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  • Any New Jet Owners Out There?

    Hi,

    I understand Jet moved their manufacturing to China. Anyone have or know of these machines and care to comment?

    Anyone care to coment anyway? ;-)

    Marv

  • #2
    Marv:

    I recently bought a Jet 9 X 19. It has worked well so far. I did have a minor problem with it early on, and found the tech support at Jet to be excellent. I don't have any real basis for comparison,since it has been about 17 years since I last used a lathe and that was a big boy in a community college class. One thing I do like is the manual which is pretty through and understandable. I also recently bought a Grizzly mill,(I like it but I cant's say much for the manual) and I think that if I had it to do over again I might consider a Grizzly lathe. That mill is one solid, quiet piece of machinery. Hope this helps.

    Comment


    • #3
      MichaelJ, Whatup dude?

      Noticed you have a Grizzly mill. Can you tell me which model and how it works for you? I am looking for a mill also and have looked at the Grizzly mills but need some input form an owner/operator

      Thanks

      GreenWillyPeter at your service

      Knowledge is power but power corrupts, absolutely. What now?

      Comment


      • #4
        GWP:
        The Grizzly is a G1005 which went for $895 minus shipping (which was only about $75 to No. Carolina.) I haven't used it a whole lot, but in just going over it is seems really well built, and I don't think I've ever owned a quieter power tool.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks, folks. I think I have eliminated the Asian lathes as candidates at this point.

          I like Jet's service, but all their low end and mid end lathes are manufactured in China. Those machines made in Taiwan are starting to approach the prices for North American or European iron.

          Comment


          • #6
            HI:
            I am looking at purchasing a Jet 9 x 20 lathe. Are the Chinese made Jet lathes inferior? Where are Grizzly products made? Does anyone feel Grizzly makes a better lathe? Grizzly is definitely cheaper.

            David Walker

            Comment


            • #7
              Well, questions lead to more questions and I keep finding out more and more as I go. However, the best method I have found to identify the country of build is to ask the sales team.

              Jet did the best job of providing an honest answer. I really like their customer support and commitment. A local dealer did the worst! Not only did they claim (on a stack of bibles) that one of the Jets was absolutely, positively Taiwan, but they further said that they DO NOT sell ANY Chinese lathes. That includes the lower end Jet models that are made in China. Well, a call to Jet got me the skinny on the true origin, but the real kicker was when I cracked open their [the local dealer's] catalog and after paging past the Clausings and Southbends to my shock and horror I find not one, but 6 different known Chinese brands that they "proudly" sell. Next, they will tell me that if I go around to the back and see the guy in the pin-stripped suit that they have some unbelievable deals on used cars. Makes perfect sense to me since I can't 'believe' what they try to tell me about lathes.

              Additionally, MSC and Enco both did well when responding to my questions and I got strait friendly answers. I have never delt with Grizzly or Harbor Freight, but others have spoken well of them, they just didn't seem to be as technically strong with support as Enco or MSC.

              I have received a lot of help from Blue Ridge Machinery. Gene has taken a lot of time to "learn me good" on lathes. I highly recommend his council.

              So, where ARE all of these products made? Well, CHINA, of course! I only found one lathe made in Taiwan for under $4,000 (when you add freight and base cabinet). That was a 14" by 40" Gear Head lathe sold by MSC (TJ82837915). It has a one-year warranty, too.

              Even all of the Jets were Chinese. However, I did get the impression that Jet was probably a superior product compared to their clones you see in the Enco, Grizzly, and Harbor Freight. At least they seemed to care more about their product and customer.

              Now in all fairness when you start crossing the $5,500 range you will see more and more Taiwan and less and less Chinese. But again, you are rapidly approaching the magic $7,500 threshold where you can buy brand new American or European products that will knock your socks off. I have been told that an $8,000 domestic built lathe will be 4 times the lathe than a $4,000 Asian counterpart. Hell, you can buy a brandy new Clausing for about $8,500! Emco and Standard-Modern are claimed as far superior products than what is imported from the Asian continent.

              Okay, $8,500 is kind of steep for a hobby, but I admit that I have been giving it serious thought after considering spending $4,000 for a lessor product that will not stand the test of time. My feeling is that I might want to save my money and buy a good lathe once than to buy an Asian lathe that I end up replacing somewhere down the road with an $8,000 lathe. So, I rationalize that $8,000 is cheaper than $12,000 in the long run.

              The only other way out is to buy used. I hear many people have purchased a nice tool for a very reasonable, if not down right cheap, price. I don't know what to look for in a used lathe to keep myself from buying someone else's heartburn and it doesn't help that I every thing I look at has that "lost kitten in the rain" look about it. I'm just too big hearted to keep from damaging myself and my pocket book. Perhaps some of you might fare better. ;-)

              Comment


              • #8
                <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by michaelj:
                Marv:

                I recently bought a Jet 9 X 19. It has worked well so far. I did have a minor problem with it early on, and found the tech support at Jet to be excellent. I don't have any real basis for comparison,since it has been about 17 years since I last used a lathe and that was a big boy in a community college class. One thing I do like is the manual which is pretty through and understandable. I also recently bought a Grizzly mill,(I like it but I cant's say much for the manual) and I think that if I had it to do over again I might consider a Grizzly lathe. That mill is one solid, quiet piece of machinery. Hope this helps.
                </font>

                Comment


                • #9
                  Marv,
                  I recently purchased a used South Bend 10x33 w/ QCG, 1 3/8" bore, flame hardened ways. The machine is in very good shape with no noticeble wear on the ways. It took me about 2 month of searching to find what I wanted. I purchased this lathe for under $1000.00.
                  I too looked at the imports as I live about 45 minutes from the Grizzly in Muncy, PA. The one thing I have noticed is the lack of accesories and spare parts available for the imports from used machinery dealers or on ebay. That means you will have to buy these items from Grizzly, HF or jet ect.

                  Thanks
                  Ken

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yo, Marv; Jump right in the boat and set here with me and grab on the paddle. I'm going through the same decision process right now.

                    So far here is the skinny-poop. I have looked at a Jet, an Enco and a Grizzly, all 12-13 x 36-40. I can' find ANYTHING wrong with the products that would cause me to buy something else.

                    I spent all today with a machinist who has a 13 1/2 x 40 Grizzly G4016 Gearhead and a Grizzly G9902 mill. We went over both machines and he pointed out a few things he didn't like but all those things were personal nitpiks Over all he had no complaints at all with either machine for hobby and light industrial work. The major nitpick was not having a DRO on his home tools which will be rectified in the future when the prices get a little more in line with his pocket book.

                    He is a machinist for a local plywood company and has a LeBlond and a Polish lathe at work, BIG lathes for heavy industry. We both agreed that if money were no object there were American and European lathes he would have instead of the Grizzly.

                    I ask him all the questions and whines I had come across on forums bashing the asian machines and to show me on this lathe, which he did. I couldn't find anything that wasn't attributed to personal likes, dislikes and prejudice.

                    Sure, you will find higher quality on a higher priced lathe just like an car, truck, gun, or boat or anything else for that matter, but for a hobby lathe it fits the budget.

                    I won't buy a lathe online from Ebay or any other place sight unseen. I'm just like the man from Missouri - SHOW ME. Aside from being an ex-cop I've been around long enough to fully believe in the words CAVEAT EMPTOR. That goes for buying advice from forums. I know people and I don't know who is on the other side of the net putting out all that sage advice.

                    My advice? Decide what you want to spend, what parameters are important to you, buy it new, don't look back and enjoy what you have.

                    I don't have many more years to go so I'm not wasting time chasing those "fantastic buys on the internet". My money is going to who ever has the best deal when I'm ready to buy. After looking and playing with the Grizzly, unless Jet or Enco has a sale on, Grizzly will be the one. If I win the lotto between now and then, guess which one I will buy.

                    If you want to be a machinist, be one. Every little nitpik can be rectified and if you are an astute businessman you may find a ready made market for that fix. Go make some money!!!!

                    GreenWillyPeter at your service

                    CAVEAT EMPTOR to the max

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks, GWP for the reply and making room in the boat!

                      I would give careful consideration to the Taiwan lathe that MSC has for sale. The company MSC is an up-scale version of Enco. Which I have found both companies to be great when it comes to service.

                      MSC offers many more products than Enco so not only do you have a wider choice, but they also sell high quality versions for a proportinal price.

                      Check out:

                      http://www.mscdirect.com

                      They have a sale running until the end of the month for a Taiwan built 14 by 40" Geared Head Gap Bench lathe with a 1 year warrenty for $3,295. They actually quoted me an additional $100 discount for a final price of $3,195. Check it out and see what you think.

                      Good luck and thanks for the help. ;-)

                      Marv

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Marv:
                        Hi,

                        I understand Jet moved their manufacturing to China. Anyone have or know of these machines and care to comment?

                        Anyone care to coment anyway? ;-)

                        Marv
                        </font>

                        Hi Marv, GWP and others in the same boat.

                        I've been in this same quandry for awhile now and finally decided there was no easy way out and went ahead and bought a used American machine. Advantages: came with some tooling, less expensive, locally available (stroke of luck there), heavy, rigid construction, gear head, quick change and so on. Disadvantage: now have to figure out exactly how worn it is and how to compensate for it, still need some additional tooling and so on. It's kinda like you take a chance no matter what until you get some experience and this could be some very expensive experience if it turns out badly. Had this lathe not come available, I was ready to go to Vermont (about an 18-hour trip one-way for me, and buy a used 13 inch South Bend from Joe Bergamo at Plaza Machinery. He has a good reputation as having good used machines at reasonable, but not cheap, prices. Call or fax Amy at Plaza and she will email their machinery list (802-234-9673) (fax 802-234-6325). It's a tough choice, but since I like antiques anyway, thought I'd bite the bullet and get a classy looking old-timer, err...let me rephrase that since I'm 11 yrs older than the Clausing I bought and just call it a good looking, experienced lathe. Best of luck in your quest.

                        Oilcan

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Righteous, Marv and Oilcan. This world can be a hard place. You take your pick, pay your money and take your chance. Always a "My dog's better than Your dog" pile of happy horse sh--. We all have lathe-envy or envy of some kind.

                          I bought one of those high dollar German sports cars once. Beautiful cast aluminium covers, leather, Fast, Oh man. Spent all my time polishing, dodging dings, paying through the nether reigions for parts and labor, lots of oh's and ah's from those with the "ENVY" but they didn't have the headaches. Found out that many parts were interchangeable with chea-pass VW parts.

                          Sold the "DamThing" to another starry-eyed dumass. In the end it's nothing but nuts and bolts. Did I mention the tickets????That toy drew cops like stink on sh-- and it didn't matter what I was doing, it was WRONG. I don't even rate a glance nowadays and I can be blowing the doors off everything in site.

                          You guy on the East coast have it made. Enjoy your Clausing!!!!!!

                          GreenWillyPeter at your service

                          LARGE AMOUNT OF ENVY

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Ah, GWP. You should have just hung in there and got a 911. ;-)

                            My '95 purrs like a kitten (and launches like an F-14 off a catapault) and the best thing yet is that it only needs oil and filter changes. I haven't had to take a wrench to yet (except to bolt the license plate on). ;-)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Marv:
                              I requested a test sheet & oweners manual from JET on their 9x20 lathe and one of their mill/drills. If the data looks good, I am going to purchase the lathe because they have several authorized repair facilities with 1.5 hours of my house. Also, I have heard a lot of good things about JET customer service. At some point you have to jump in. I would rather buy new than used and I feel it is less of a financial risk to purchase a new asian machine than spend the big bucks for an American or European machine. The worst case is that I would be out $1200 on the JET lathe. On the plus side, I could save several thousand dollars by not purchasing a more expensive machine and use that money for more tools. Decide what you want to build, the tolerances you want to hold and remember you do not need a production grade machine and go for it. I am looking at my first lathe as a learning experience.

                              What is the email address for MSC?

                              Good Luck
                              Walkman!

                              Comment

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