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During the last year I acquired an older model Vicmarc VL300. The lathe was purchased locally in northern Canada where if you want accessories you will have to purchase from a distance either on line or by phone order. A search on line came up with Branches to Bowls Ltd. in Calgary, Alberta.
I knew what I wanted to accomplish with this lathe, however I did not know exactly what parts or types of accessories I should purchase so I called Ken. What an eye opener that was. Having answered a couple of questions Ken asked me about the lathe, I soon realized I was talking to someone very knowledgeable about Vicmarc products. Ken was not in any rush and we talked about turning in general as well as available options for me relative to accessories for my VL300. In the end I placed an order and Ken has become my “go to” guy for all my lathe needs.
I have ordered numerous items from Branches to Bowls and have been very impressed with the quality of service provided by Ken. Vicmarc products have earned a great deal of respect around the globe and here in Canada, Branches to Bowls Ltd will no doubt earn the respect of the woodturning community.
Robin T. Whitehorse, Yukon.
I purchased a Vicmarc VL240 from “Branches to Bowls Ltd” in October, 2017. Negotiations, details, and agreements were all done long distance (phone and email). I was very pleased with Ken’s friendly, informative, customer friendly approach throughout the process (and since). Now I am enjoying an excellent lathe that is versatile, stable, powerful and precise! This workhorse runs for hours without any sign of heating...all sizes and types of wood keep changing shape...and I...enjoy!
...and I hum my theme song (from the Byrds)...”There is a season, turn, turn, turn...”
Norm M. Prince George, BC.
I have chucks from all the major manufacturers, but my VM-100 is by far the best! I love that it is easy to use but more importantly its holding power!
Steve, Calgary, AB.
Quick email to say how pleased I am with the Carter and Son tools. I’m re-learning how to turn all over again it seems but what a joy to get covered in a pile of curly shavings, lol. These tools are like being handed the keys too a Porsche after driving a Russian Lada. I’ve just started working with the bowl gauge, the spindle gauge is amazing, especially on higher speed, the shavings fly off.
The bowl gauge works so well at my lowest speed, it’s just so much safer. The only problem I have now is that all other tools fail in comparison... Starting too think about a couple more down the road once I get more time flying curly shavings.
A few weeks after ordering I was eager to unpack my new Vicmarc VL150 and bolt it on the base waiting in position. The cast iron housing and the quality of the overall manufacturing provides the feel and behavior very much like a solid stand large lathe for projects less than 12”. Additionally, the VL150 comes with the advantages of a small lathe-tools and accessories can be used in close range and operation from the tail stock end is easy, no need moving the assembly and head stock or even mounting the lathe bed. Also, tail stock removal is fast and does not require significant strength.
Electronic RPM control and the VL150 power at very low RPM’s allow turning operation at optimum speed for high quality turning projects. I like that “reverse turning” requires override an is reset to normal direction afterward. In the heat of the moment one is prone to forgetting with unwanted things going to happen.
Turns out I tend to use the Vicmarc VL150 for most projects, unless the diameter or size requires me to use my large lathe. Fortunately, compatibility with its 1” tool rest diameter and the #2 Morse taper tools swap with a large is easy without new inventory. Well worth waiting for the shipment from Australia.
Kai, Calgary, AB.
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