Jet Mini vs. Delta Midi @ Lowes

Let me start by saying it`s a slippery slope........
Ok, I`ve got a Jet mini lathe. Step pulley model. Snagged it when Amazon had
`em on sale for 199.99
Now the local Lowes has one of the Delta`s left for the 169 (plus don't
forget Delta turning tool or bed extension promotion).
Is the Delta that much better of a tool to consider buying one to replace
the Jet ?
Figured I could sell the Jet and recoup some of the cost. But don`t want to
waste money on redundant tooling if there isn't much to be gained.
Now I don`t do a lot of turning and I do have a Powermatic 90 for big stuff.
But I do like taking the mini/midi on vacation and using it away from the
Thanks to all.
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I have the Midi and used the jet in a pen turning class. I believe them to be nearly the same. I liked the switch position on the Delta a little better. When I purchased, Woodcraft had a Delta sale and included the extension bed so I bought it. My personal advice would be to keep the Jet and keep turning. If you want another small lathe then pick up the Delta.
Rick Albuquerque, NM
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I have taught at my local Woodcraft on both lathes. The Jet is far and away my preference. It held up much better to the abuse in a classroom also.
Reply to
Rusty Myers
buying the Delta. At best the delta is almost as good as the jet. I turn and teach on the jet and have turned on the delta quite a bit. I also have help0 many customers to fix there deltas when the bring them back to the store. and we rarely have to do anything like that on the jet. I curently have 5 jet leathes in the class room that are 4 years old with out a single repair. One thing to concider is the plastic handles on deltas, they break all the time. Delta is supposed to be changing to the metal handles in the near future. delta did have a problem with off center shafts in the head stock for a shor time. We had to exchange all of them for about 6 months to a year. We had one that the only 1x8tpi face plate that would go on the lathe was the one that came with it. Nothing else would fit.
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Sometimes a particular product just falls into place and for a while, all things considered, it is ahead of its class. IMHO, the BMW 2002, the Pfluger Supreme reel, the Glaser gouge.... and the Jet mini all qualified. Arch
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No. IMO the Jet is superior to the Delta in terms of quality. That's just my impression based on the fact(?) that I believe metal is superior to plastic. I may not be right either.
Reply to
Barry N. Turner
whoa whoa whoa. I was just kidding trying to get the OP to tell me where the Lowes was so I could go buy the Delta. (Hence the smiley face).
Reply to
NoOne N Particular
Sorry, I missed the smiley face. Hope you got a lathe, either one should make you happy. Actually I'd rather have a big Oneway, Stubby or Poolewood but I don't have the space or money!
Reply to
Harry B. Pye
The Jet is the better machine. The Delta motor does not have the torque of the Jet. I've turned on both and it's much easier to stall the Delta, and when you do the motor is slow to ramp back up again. If you stall the Jet it starts right back up to speed immediately. If you want to upgrade the Jet, get the Jet Mini Variable Speed from for $174.99 (with the $25 online coupon) and free shipping. Just did, and it's better than the original mini. The motor is SUPER quiet and runs cooler than the original. -Jim Gott- San Jose, CA
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Jim Gott
Barry, Metal is not always superior to plastic. depends on the metal AND the plastic! Also I've had my delta about as long as youv'e had you jet. I've had no problems with delta's plastic knobs yet! O BTW Hi! Keepem turnin! Paul
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I was a "Delta person" for years and have a fair mumber of their machines in my shop. Then I had a design problem with a new jointer I had just purchased. After many telephone calls and letters, they sent two men in a truck to take it away and give me a full refund check. One of the men remarked that they were taking all of this model back. I replaced it with a Jet and have had no problems.
Rumor has it that that some of the engineers left Delta and formed the Jet Company or at least joined them. Have you ever noticed the similarity beween Delta and Jet designs?
I recently bought a Jet Model 1236 lathe and have no complaints. Yes, the detent pin in the speed control handle does stick once in a while but a little jiggle and it pops into place.
The only fly in the ointment is that I believe that Jet has joined a conglomerate and I wonder what will be the result of that.
Peace ~ Sir Edgar =F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8= =F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8=F8
Reply to
Sir Edgar
Every Lowes that hasn't sold out their stock--they're discontinuing either Delta as a supplier or a significant part of the Delta product line and they have it all marked way down.
I'd planned on getting into turning "someday" and when I saw that Delta for $169 I couldn't pass it up.
Reply to
J. Clarke
I bought the delta when it first appeared. Used it for two years and found it to be a piece of crap. Bought the jet when it went to 199.
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I'm curious--what deficiencies did you find in it? I just picked one up on the Lowes clearance and am wondering what to look out for.
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J. Clarke

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