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Chester lathe as my new lathe anyone

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Henry Brown02/04/2020 10:41:18
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196 forum posts
50 photos

But I'm not sure if warco machines are any better than chester machines both being made in China or finished any better than one another i know warco is a better run company for sure but as machines im thinking are they really any better than each other being both made to a budget range.

Jack, I think you'll find if they look the same with similar spec's they will be from the same factory. When I started looking it was clear that models badged by Chester, Warco and indeed Grizzly in the US were the same. The online handbooks confirmed this, the Grizzly handbook being head and shoulders above either of the UK offerings.

Assuming they come from the same factory I think its all down to the best deal, including delivery costs, you can get and after sales service.

There are three Prima Dilna video's about the GH1230 on You Tube you might like to look at if you haven't seen them.

I hope you enjoy what ever model you buy!

Mark Simpson 102/04/2020 11:11:20
79 forum posts
23 photos

I bought a crusader deluxe 3 or 4 years ago, and it's my only lathe (at the moment ) I've made quite a lot of 6" traction engine bits on it including Crank shaft and turned some big castings, it was bought to replace a tired colchester student which needed a bed grind to do anything longer than a few inches. I looked at a lot of M300's etc. but all in my price range were pretty knackered, if I had 10k that's what I would buy.

The lathe is pretty well made, and you get a lot for the money, I added an ER40 collet chuck and DRO to the standard stuff. As someone said the chucks (esp 4 jaw) are big but that suits me fine.

I've just finished by Little samson crankshaft and only got a taper of the than .0005" over about 18" (and it's eccentric to machine) . Good enough for me

I've also fettled some bits, replaced allen screws with presto ones here and there and generally improved it. But I have used it since day2... it took some effort to get all of the packing grease/oil of it.

The accessories were pretty crap tbh, The fixed steady was off centre by 20mm and 18mm low. The bed stop was so rough internally the micrometer part could not rotate, but they weren't too hard to fix properly. If I had checked them when I got them I woudl have just sent them back.

They were pretty poor on communications, the lathe turned up unannounced on the back of a truck one day, no advice note despite quite a lot of asking. One bit was missing, arrived 24 hours later when I asked them for it.

Get everything you might want with it, check it fits.... my efforts to get soft jaws even 6 months later were fruitless, but they offered 10% off a new chuck with some soft jaws...

I like the lathe, the whole "customer experience"... not so much

david Sewell 102/04/2020 11:43:33
3 forum posts

I have a Chester Coventry to which I have just done a full bearing change.. Not that I had a problem other than the paint coming off inside the gear head case, told that this was common. I did change the motor and electrics to 3 phase with VFD however, this was not needed but more to the fact that I had the items in my workshop. Got to say, 3 phase has made the lathe more smoother.

Regarding these lathes, if you spend some time setting up and getting to know your machine, it will give a very good results.

I do come from a machining background and would there is no limits to how much you can spend on a machine. For the home workshop the Chester has been fine. Runs extremely true and does all that I want.

Jack M02/04/2020 20:12:34
21 forum posts
Posted by Henry Brown on 02/04/2020 10:41:18:

But I'm not sure if warco machines are any better than chester machines both being made in China or finished any better than one another i know warco is a better run company for sure but as machines im thinking are they really any better than each other being both made to a budget range.

Jack, I think you'll find if they look the same with similar spec's they will be from the same factory. When I started looking it was clear that models badged by Chester, Warco and indeed Grizzly in the US were the same. The online handbooks confirmed this, the Grizzly handbook being head and shoulders above either of the UK offerings.

Assuming they come from the same factory I think its all down to the best deal, including delivery costs, you can get and after sales service.

There are three Prima Dilna video's about the GH1230 on You Tube you might like to look at if you haven't seen them.

I hope you enjoy what ever model you buy!

Thanks for your reply thats what I'm thinking now myself all look same same specs etc so like you said best deal and price so chester wins that for deal price just there after sales is there only bad point but have had they have got better over the years

Thanks

Jack M02/04/2020 20:25:31
21 forum posts

Thanks for the replies mark and David you two have confirmed something better in my head and what i wanted to hear that they are just as great machine as any other Chinese lathe no matter the name warco etc just the usual things too i hear about chester they customers skills are not great but i can deal with that if the lathe is a good machine so thanks

For the better deal of money and extras the chester is an better offering over warco done alot of looking into both machines its 99% the same lathe i think anyway so my mind is getting more to the side of going for a drive to chester when back open after all the virus stuff going on to actually see one in person as I've not seen one in the flesh

Thanks

Alex L03/04/2020 11:32:15
5 forum posts
Posted by Howard Lewis on 01/04/2020 13:11:58:

Have to say that, based on my small dealings with Chester, have found that Warco are far better on after sales service.

Howard.

 

Found this to be directly opposite. Warco sold me a lathe from stock that took a while to 'prepare' for delivery. When it arrived it wasn't secured porperly to the pallets and was damaged. On the phone to Warco with the driver still waiting, they asked to reject the delivery which I did. Then they wanted to receive the lathe back and inspect the damage. Whilst not unreasonable, at that point I've simply run out of time and was facing losing a job I took for a customer. Went with Chester (dealt with Robert). First class service - from quotation to delivery and after sales enquiries. Unless there's something I specifically need that only Warco can supply (?), Chester will have my money first.

 

PS: Don't get me started on the lathe though. Does the job fine but lacks the refinement of the industrial era machines.

Edited By Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:34:45

larry phelan 103/04/2020 13:04:56
669 forum posts
24 photos

Just as an afterthought, has anyone noticed that few new lathes seem to come with a faceplate anymore ?

I would have thought that this would come as standard.

SillyOldDuffer03/04/2020 13:14:15
5651 forum posts
1159 photos
Posted by Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:32:15:
Posted by Howard Lewis on 01/04/2020 13:11:58:

Have to say that, based on my small dealings with Chester, have found that Warco are far better on after sales service.

Howard.

Found this to be directly opposite. Warco sold me a lathe from stock that took a while to 'prepare' for delivery. When it arrived it wasn't secured porperly to the pallets and was damaged. On the phone to Warco with the driver still waiting, they asked to reject the delivery which I did. Then they wanted to receive the lathe back and inspect the damage. Whilst not unreasonable, at that point I've simply run out of time and was facing losing a job I took for a customer. Went with Chester (dealt with Robert). First class service - from quotation to delivery and after sales enquiries. Unless there's something I specifically need that only Warco can supply (?), Chester will have my money first.

...

Is Alex comparing like with like? What would have been done differently if the Chester machine had arrived damaged? Nothing, I think. Like Warco the customer rejects the delivery and returns the machine for inspection. Depending on the damage it could be fixed, replaced, or money back. Isn't that how they all operate? It's rarely economic to send engineers to look at inexpensive machines; these days most faulty goods are swapped.

I can see why Alex got upset, but didn't he choose to take a risk? As we know, these machines are sometimes faulty or arrive damaged in transit. It was a gamble.

Warco can't be blamed for Alex's disappointment because none of the hobby suppliers guarantee 100% satisfaction on delivery. Neither do the big boys, even the ones who deliver, install, calibrate and commission seriously expensive new machines as part of the purchase.

I suggest one-off experiences with any supplier aren't particularly informative, good or bad. Lots of people consistently reporting the same sort of experience is more meaningful. When things inevitably go wrong, it's how responsive they are, and Warco seem to be reasonably sympathetic. (My problem was fixed without fuss for what that's worth.) Surely reasonable for customers to expect a delay while a replacement is organised, and reasonable to expect a refund if a replacement can't be found within a week or two. It's not reasonable to expect another lathe to be helicoptered in straight away by an apologetic chief engineer!

Another example; when you buy a train ticket there's no guarantee there will be a seat, or even that the train will run. Nor are passengers entitled to consequential damages resulting from disrupted journeys, even if the train operator is completely at fault.

Dave

Alex L03/04/2020 13:47:07
5 forum posts
Posted by SillyOldDuffer on 03/04/2020 13:14:15:
Posted by Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:32:15:
Posted by Howard Lewis on 01/04/2020 13:11:58:

Have to say that, based on my small dealings with Chester, have found that Warco are far better on after sales service.

Howard.

Found this to be directly opposite. Warco sold me a lathe from stock that took a while to 'prepare' for delivery. When it arrived it wasn't secured porperly to the pallets and was damaged. On the phone to Warco with the driver still waiting, they asked to reject the delivery which I did. Then they wanted to receive the lathe back and inspect the damage. Whilst not unreasonable, at that point I've simply run out of time and was facing losing a job I took for a customer. Went with Chester (dealt with Robert). First class service - from quotation to delivery and after sales enquiries. Unless there's something I specifically need that only Warco can supply (?), Chester will have my money first.

...

Is Alex comparing like with like? What would have been done differently if the Chester machine had arrived damaged? Nothing, I think. Like Warco the customer rejects the delivery and returns the machine for inspection. Depending on the damage it could be fixed, replaced, or money back. Isn't that how they all operate? It's rarely economic to send engineers to look at inexpensive machines; these days most faulty goods are swapped.

I can see why Alex got upset, but didn't he choose to take a risk? As we know, these machines are sometimes faulty or arrive damaged in transit. It was a gamble.

Warco can't be blamed for Alex's disappointment because none of the hobby suppliers guarantee 100% satisfaction on delivery. Neither do the big boys, even the ones who deliver, install, calibrate and commission seriously expensive new machines as part of the purchase.

I suggest one-off experiences with any supplier aren't particularly informative, good or bad. Lots of people consistently reporting the same sort of experience is more meaningful. When things inevitably go wrong, it's how responsive they are, and Warco seem to be reasonably sympathetic. (My problem was fixed without fuss for what that's worth.) Surely reasonable for customers to expect a delay while a replacement is organised, and reasonable to expect a refund if a replacement can't be found within a week or two. It's not reasonable to expect another lathe to be helicoptered in straight away by an apologetic chief engineer!

Another example; when you buy a train ticket there's no guarantee there will be a seat, or even that the train will run. Nor are passengers entitled to consequential damages resulting from disrupted journeys, even if the train operator is completely at fault.

Dave

Dave,

I'm far from taking sides - just gave my experience following one from Howard.

If Warco is not to blame for messing up a £2k+ order, would it be myself then?

I've no listed all the details that happened between me and Warco and don't think I'll bother given the clear bias on here.

Jack M03/04/2020 15:11:34
21 forum posts
Posted by Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:32:15:
Posted by Howard Lewis on 01/04/2020 13:11:58:

Have to say that, based on my small dealings with Chester, have found that Warco are far better on after sales service.

Howard.

Found this to be directly opposite. Warco sold me a lathe from stock that took a while to 'prepare' for delivery. When it arrived it wasn't secured porperly to the pallets and was damaged. On the phone to Warco with the driver still waiting, they asked to reject the delivery which I did. Then they wanted to receive the lathe back and inspect the damage. Whilst not unreasonable, at that point I've simply run out of time and was facing losing a job I took for a customer. Went with Chester (dealt with Robert). First class service - from quotation to delivery and after sales enquiries. Unless there's something I specifically need that only Warco can supply (?), Chester will have my money first.

PS: Don't get me started on the lathe though. Does the job fine but lacks the refinement of the industrial era machines.

Edited By Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:34:45

Hi Alex I only find two people at warco good to deal with part from that I think there not that helpful too bit rude never dealt with chester but over a phone call nothing seemed too much warco just asked what i wanted send quote didnt ask if i needed any extras anything else just rushed me

I think I will take a drive to chester to see the machine in person as never seen one no booking needed to show room like someone mention i dont mind either adjusting playing with machine to make tiny bit better ha

Thanks

Alex L03/04/2020 16:00:01
5 forum posts
Posted by Jack M on 03/04/2020 15:11:34:
Posted by Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:32:15:
Posted by Howard Lewis on 01/04/2020 13:11:58:

Have to say that, based on my small dealings with Chester, have found that Warco are far better on after sales service.

Howard.

Found this to be directly opposite. Warco sold me a lathe from stock that took a while to 'prepare' for delivery. When it arrived it wasn't secured porperly to the pallets and was damaged. On the phone to Warco with the driver still waiting, they asked to reject the delivery which I did. Then they wanted to receive the lathe back and inspect the damage. Whilst not unreasonable, at that point I've simply run out of time and was facing losing a job I took for a customer. Went with Chester (dealt with Robert). First class service - from quotation to delivery and after sales enquiries. Unless there's something I specifically need that only Warco can supply (?), Chester will have my money first.

PS: Don't get me started on the lathe though. Does the job fine but lacks the refinement of the industrial era machines.

Edited By Alex L on 03/04/2020 11:34:45

Hi Alex I only find two people at warco good to deal with part from that I think there not that helpful too bit rude never dealt with chester but over a phone call nothing seemed too much warco just asked what i wanted send quote didnt ask if i needed any extras anything else just rushed me

I think I will take a drive to chester to see the machine in person as never seen one no booking needed to show room like someone mention i dont mind either adjusting playing with machine to make tiny bit better ha

Thanks

Nailed it on the head Jack. They appeared to be that little bit too busy with my order as well. Proforma had to be redone twice, "We're packing your order. Call next week." Again, twice. I can understand everything but if after all that you send it half baked and it's falling off the pallet? There's no excuse.

I would suggest you go and see these Far Eastern lathes in the flesh if/when situation permits - I wish I did. Largerly it doesn't matter who delivers it - Chester, Warco or Alibaba - so long as they do. If you make the trip, arrange Robert to see you. He's very helpful with prices and general advice.

Howard Lewis03/04/2020 16:40:04
3160 forum posts
2 photos

Bias = Number of people relating their experiences and disagreeing with you?.

My experiences with Warco have not all been trouble free, but better than with Chester..

My preferred supplier is neither of these, and if in the market for a machine, would get the order,if it was within their product range, because of my good experiences, like so many others, with that company!

We will all deal in that manner;, why give business to someone who is rude, or unhelpful, no matter who they are.

If the machine had problems, would you expect any help, let alone quickly.?

Your choice should be made on specification, availability, after sales back up, and price, plus any first hand experiences that you can gather.. You balance how each of these factors score for a potential supplier, and make your choice.

You notice that price came last. A well specified machine, with good back up, and good reputation may well be a far better buy than a cheapie that no likes or cares about.

The bitterness of low quality persists long after the sweet taste of low price has faded..

Howard

Jack M03/04/2020 19:38:46
21 forum posts
Posted by Howard Lewis on 03/04/2020 16:40:04:

Bias = Number of people relating their experiences and disagreeing with you?.

My experiences with Warco have not all been trouble free, but better than with Chester..

My preferred supplier is neither of these, and if in the market for a machine, would get the order,if it was within their product range, because of my good experiences, like so many others, with that company!

We will all deal in that manner;, why give business to someone who is rude, or unhelpful, no matter who they are.

If the machine had problems, would you expect any help, let alone quickly.?

Your choice should be made on specification, availability, after sales back up, and price, plus any first hand experiences that you can gather.. You balance how each of these factors score for a potential supplier, and make your choice.

You notice that price came last. A well specified machine, with good back up, and good reputation may well be a far better buy than a cheapie that no likes or cares about.

The bitterness of low quality persists long after the sweet taste of low price has faded..

Howard

Hi Howard what company would you buy from then? I'm open to other offers to look at

Thanks

Howard Lewis04/04/2020 16:40:58
3160 forum posts
2 photos

Jack, You have a PM

Howard

Tony Pratt 104/04/2020 17:07:28
1106 forum posts
3 photos
Posted by Howard Lewis on 04/04/2020 16:40:58:

Jack, You have a PM

Howard

Oh come on, which one would you buy from, don't be shyfrown!

Tony

jimmy b04/04/2020 17:15:23
avatar
626 forum posts
38 photos
Posted by Mark Simpson 1 on 02/04/2020 11:11:20:

I bought a crusader deluxe 3 or 4 years ago, and it's my only lathe (at the moment ) I've made quite a lot of 6" traction engine bits on it including Crank shaft and turned some big castings, it was bought to replace a tired colchester student which needed a bed grind to do anything longer than a few inches. I looked at a lot of M300's etc. but all in my price range were pretty knackered, if I had 10k that's what I would buy.

The lathe is pretty well made, and you get a lot for the money, I added an ER40 collet chuck and DRO to the standard stuff. As someone said the chucks (esp 4 jaw) are big but that suits me fine.

I've just finished by Little samson crankshaft and only got a taper of the than .0005" over about 18" (and it's eccentric to machine) . Good enough for me

I've also fettled some bits, replaced allen screws with presto ones here and there and generally improved it. But I have used it since day2... it took some effort to get all of the packing grease/oil of it.

The accessories were pretty crap tbh, The fixed steady was off centre by 20mm and 18mm low. The bed stop was so rough internally the micrometer part could not rotate, but they weren't too hard to fix properly. If I had checked them when I got them I woudl have just sent them back.

They were pretty poor on communications, the lathe turned up unannounced on the back of a truck one day, no advice note despite quite a lot of asking. One bit was missing, arrived 24 hours later when I asked them for it.

Get everything you might want with it, check it fits.... my efforts to get soft jaws even 6 months later were fruitless, but they offered 10% off a new chuck with some soft jaws...

I like the lathe, the whole "customer experience"... not so much

Mark,

I had the same problem with soft jaws (i needed them for several jobs). I rang Chester to order and was told that there were none for that chuck! I told them I would reject the lathe and they responded by sending a new chuck and a set of soft jaws!

Jim

jimmy b04/04/2020 17:19:30
avatar
626 forum posts
38 photos

I second Ales's advice. I took half a day out to go to Chester and have a proper measure up and get a feel for the lathe, after all I intend on having this machine for a very long time!

jim

Jack M05/04/2020 11:25:59
21 forum posts

I think a trip up to chester is needed to get a look at it and id do the same as Jim say you can have the machine back

Going to be a long painful wait to be able to go for a trip up there with virus

Thanks

Jack M03/06/2020 20:45:06
21 forum posts

All I can say is wow i wouldn't recommend them after finally buying my lathe from then think I made bad choice

Ian Skeldon 203/06/2020 22:07:52
478 forum posts
30 photos
Posted by Jack M on 03/06/2020 20:45:06:

All I can say is wow i wouldn't recommend them after finally buying my lathe from then think I made bad choice

Hi Jack,

Your update is a bit vague, which company did you buy from in the end and what problems have you encountered?

Ian

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