I bought a cheap craftsman wood lathe from craigslist. It was cheap because it had problems. The tube the tailstock and tool stand rode on was torqued out of place placing the tailstock 45% off center. It was rusty, and did not have a belt.
An afternoon of work brought it back functional and while I still need to build a stand and tweak it a little I am happy with my purchase.
I was looking for an easy first lathe project so I decided to make a nightstick
So far, the only thing I can do is turn nightstick shaped objects. My goal is to turn wood bowls, but right now all of my disposable income (and some that is not disposable) are building AR-15‘s in the event of another attempt at gun control that only makes guns more expensive.
My lather skills are non-existent, but my boy likes playing with the objects I have made.