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Hi all,

You’ll only get a basic Myford for £700 without a feed gearbox (these can cost £500 on their own) and if you go for a CUD whatever you do DON’T buy one without screwcutting, they are extremely undesirable and hard to sell on if you upgrade.

If you go bigger to something with three phase a converter is a bad idea, these have a habit of overheating older motors plus it makes the machine noisy believe it or not! An inverter is a better option as you can vary the speed but the motor has to be altered from ‘star’ to ‘delta’ (the way it is wired inside); books are available and it is straightforward to do.

A couple of lathes in your price range are the Colchester Bantam or Colchester Student but beware, many have been used in industry and are pretty much worn out so if it’s noisy and is full of oil (I have seen a couple where the headstock gearbox has been run dry) give it a miss.

When buying a machine ALWAYS ask to hear it run or you could get stuck with one that has been messed with and needs hours of work to get it going again. Someone I know bought a Harrison M300 which was claimed to work but they lied, all the switch wiring had been cut and it took two days of work by someone who knew what they were at to get it going!

A good site for research is https://www.lathes.co.uk/ which also has a classified section where both traders and private sellers advertise machines.

As Richard says, buy a lathe with a good selection of tooling, many dealers split this off and sell it on then want the earth for the machine even though it has sod all with it! Leave people like this well alone and also be careful and make a list of what is with a machine when buying privately, my father and some of the other traders have been caught on this when the seller pinches bits off after you have bought the machine (but before you collect it) then acts like they were not there then tries to get more money for the bits!

I can point you in the direction of a couple of dealers who don’t split machines from their tooling one of which is my father who has several Myfords in but none are cheap, he doesn’t sell worn out tat.

Send me a PM if you would like their details.