Darbin Orvar

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Darbin Orvar - Girl in a Shop

My adventures in building, diy, construction, testing and finishing.

Grizzly G0766 Lathe Initial Review

I have a new tool in my shop. It is massive, it's made in cast iron, and it has the ability to spin really fast. In other words, it's a large lathe. It’s the Grizzly G0766 variable speed wood lathe.

Grizzly sent me this lathe for review, so this is a sponsored post. They also provided me with some discount codes for my audience so you guys can get 10% off this model! Use DARBIN10 at check-out. https://www.grizzly.com/products/Grizzly-22-x-42-Variable-Speed-Wood-Lathe/G0766

In the past, whenever I got a tool, it was usually in the category of: good for now, but one day I'll hopefully upgrade. Lately however, I've been looking for tools to bring into my shop that are in the “forever” category, and this beautiful piece of machinery definitely qualifies.

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Featuring a whopping 22 inch swing, and a full 42 inch long bed, you could do some seriously large projects on this beast, if you were so inclined. I will probably stick with smaller projects for the most part, but just knowing that if I ever did want to turn a really big block, or get into some large bowl turning, then I have all the equipment I'll ever need.

I suppose when it comes down to it, the thing that I'm most excited about when it comes to this lathe, is stability. Previously, I used a small bench top lathe, which was fine for most of what I was doing, however it definitely lacked mass... it just wasn't very big. And when you have the kind of stability which this new lathe offers, you just look at the subject in a whole different way. In fact, when it comes down to it, this new lathe simply can't be compared to my old one, because it's in a completely different category.

Previously wood turning, to me, was something fun... kind of like a hobby, not very serious. These days however, as I walk by the 81 inch large frame, I see a serious craft – techniques to be learned and new tools to master. Gone are the days when I mostly used carbide tools, and instead I have a new skew chisel that I'm learning how to use properly.

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Another feature, which is new to me, is the variable speed control. To be able to change the speed so easily depending on what you're working on, is a real joy. This lathe features two speed ranges: low 100 – 1200 RPM and high 100 – 3200 RPM (and you change the belts to switch from low to high). It uses 220 v, 20 AMP and features a 3 HP, 3 phase motor. In other words, the motor is very strong and offers up a lot more power than I am used to working with.

So these days, I've been spending a fair amount of time just testing it out, and getting used to the idea that I actually have this piece of equipment. There are a lot of types of turning which I haven't really gotten into, but have been wanting to do, like bowl turning and making larger furniture legs etc... and I just feel so excited to have the opportunity to finally do it for real.

In many ways, I think the lathe is such a different kind of tool. Most of the tools in the woodworking shop, are ultimately practical and handle stock which gets planed and surfaced and cut in different ways. The lathe, however – while practical at times, definitely fits in this in-between space where the artistic side is more prominent, and I think that's what I find so appealing about it. I'm not saying that turning isn't technically difficult and precise, but there's also this freedom associated to the movement and the shapes, which is oddly refreshing. So I'm looking forward to learning more about it, and experimenting with new projects which are... on the round side.