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An overall view of the One-Way1018 lathe.

Early one afternoon in March, toward the end of a very unseasonal snow shower, a truck, thankfully equipped with a lift-gate, pulled up into my driveway with the One-Way 1018 lathe that I had ordered the previous June. The driver said the lathe and stand weighed 384 pounds. That was easy to believe while Matt and I wrestled it through the snow around back to the walk out entrance to my basement. I've had a chance to use it for a few months now, and I would like to tell you about it. Throughout this review I'll be comparing the 1018 to my 15 year old Myford ML8.

The 1018 didn't take long to set up once I got it inside. The stand doubles as the shipping container. All I had to do was take off the shrink wrap holding a piece of particle board to the front of the stand and unbolt the stand from the skids. The lathe was bolted to the middle shelf, which was in turn bolted to the lower shelf. It didn't take long to undo that and mount the lathe on top. The stand had suffered some paint damage in transit, but a can of matching spray paint was included.

The lathe came with a safety drive center. The tailstock center is the very nice One-Way tailstock, but without the accessory cones. It comes with a 4 inch faceplate and a rod to aid in faceplate removal. The faceplate can be locked on to the spindle with set screws for secure reverse operation. A 3/16 inch knock-out rod is supplied.

The four inch faceplate included with the lathe is extremely heavy duty. You can see the reinforcing webs, and several of the 9 holes for mounting screws.


The lathe spindle center is 12 ½ inches above the stand, and about 43 ½ inches above the floor, depending on the leveling foot setting. The lathe is 36 inches long, the stand 40 inches long. The lathe will turn a 10 inch disk over the bed, and a 7 inch disk over the banjo. The capacity between centers depends on what centers are used. The capacity with the supplied centers is 13 ¾ inches. The distance between the spindle nose and tailstock ram is 19 3/8 inches. The tailstock ram has a 3 inch travel.

My lathe is part of the second batch One-way has produced. I think the only thing that has changed is the optional stand is now made of metal. I got the metal stand, not wanting to wait until I built a wooden one. It's very sturdy, being built of 1/8th inch thick steel, including the back, and welded into one piece, not assembled after delivery. Unfortunately, the stand does tend to pick up and magnify the noise the tool makes while cutting. It can really ring annoyingly. To combat this I used some 3/8 x ¾ UHMW strips as spacers between the lathe and the stand. This helped, but it still rang under certain conditions, so upon the advice of Kevin Clay at One-Way I fastened down the middle shelf more securely. I turned some ¾ inch maple dowels to cross pin the shelf in three places, drilled corresponding holes in the back of the stand, and drove in some wood screws. The combination of tactics works pretty well. The stand has some neat leveling feet. The adjustment range is more than adequate, and it you want to you can bolt the stand down through them. I didn't want to bolt the lathe down, so I just slipped some dowel rod through to keep them lined up and in place.

The leveling feet have an adjusting screw and a locking nut. There is a hole drilled through the foot and lathe that can be used to bolt the lathe down. I've stuck a dowel in the hole to keep the leveling foot aligned.

The headstock uses a jackshaft to reduce the diameter of the head. The motor mount has lots of adjustment and a large locking lever.

The headstock on the One-Way is a jackshaft design. If you only think about it casually, you might think of this as just extra parts and an opportunity for power loss, but the great thing about it is that by moving the step pulley down, the headstock can be much narrower right behind the drive. This lets you get much easier access to your turning at the headstock end. By way of comparison, the width of the headstock on my Myford ML8 is 6-1/4 inches. The One-Way is only 4 inches. Using a bevel gauge, measuring the angle between a line parallel to the center and a line that just clears the headstock from the top edge of the nose of the spindle, the Myford is 130 degrees, the One-Way is a more accessible 155 degrees. The belt cover is .070" thick steel, and because of the angle it is hinged at, closes itself.

A close up of the jackshaft shows the three step pulley and the flat drive belts.

The only thing that disappoints me about the headstock is that it isn't drilled through to 3/8" like my Myford. The supplied knock-out rod is only 5/16th inch, and since my drill chuck and collet chuck are threaded in back to accept 3/8th inch threaded rod, it slips in rather than knocking them out. The biggest rod I can fit through is 11/32nd inch, so I'll buy some drill rod and make another knockout rod, or make a short piece of 3/8" rod to screw in to my chucks. I welded a piece of 3/8" threaded rod onto a length of 5/16" threaded rod to use as a draw bar. The headstock is indexed to 24 divisions, just like the Myford, but on the One-Way they're numbered and the indexing head doubles as a hand wheel. I added numbers to my Myford, but you have to take off the belt cover to see them.

The spindle lock drops down between the ways for no-handed operation.

The lathe comes with a spindle locking wrench with a tenon that slips into the bed ways for no-handed operation. The rear end of the spindle is threaded to 3/4x16NF should you wish to attach a vacuum chuck or a hand wheel.

The tailstock has a 4 inch handwheel with a rotating handle, a lever/cam locking system and a brass ram locking nut.

The tailstock assembly is heavier than the one on my Myford. The tailstock ram on the Myford is ¾ inch, the ram on the One-Way is 1-1/4 inch. The wheel on the One-Way is a half inch bigger at 4 inches, and the handle on the wheel, unlike the Myford, can spin. The tailstock locks very securely in place on the ways with a locking lever, and there is very little play. The wheel that locks the ram could be a little more secure. I may make a replacement that uses a handle for more leverage. The tailstock isn't bored through, but it does self eject. It's not a lathe designed to turn lampposts on anyway, so it doesn't much matter that it isn't bored through.

The end view of the lathe shows the dovetail ways and the handwheel.



The ways on the One-Way are ½ inch thick steel, and they're dovetailed so that the tailstock will slide off easily, but lock securely. The width of the ways is more accurate than my dial caliper. The ways are welded via brackets to a 4-1/2 inch steel tube with ¼ inch thick walls. One-Way claims that this system greatly reduces vibration. I don't claim that it proves much, but I balanced a nickel on the ways. It stayed there while the lathe was running. In fact I turned the lathe on and off and even hollowed a small pre-balanced drop spindle whorl without the nickel falling over. Later I roughed a 3/4x3/4x 10 piece of purpleheart down to round without the nickel falling over.

The lever for locking the tool rest is visible in this picture. The Safety Drive Center included with the lathe is mounted in the spindle.



The banjo on the One-Way is much nicer than the one on my Myford. The slot on the latter always filled up with wood chips, so if you wanted to slide it all the way back you had to stop and clean out the slot. The One-Way uses a different mechanism that is completely covered so that will never be a problem. The Banjo on the One-Way also allows more freedom of movement, enough that you can center the tool rest behind the centerline without even angling the banjo and you can likewise position the tool rest behind the spindle nose. Both the Banjo and tool rest lock in place with 4 inch long levers and feel very positive. You don't have to worry about marking the tool rest post, as there is a floating spacer that matches the curve of the tool rest post. The collar for the tool post locking lever has 8 mounting holes but only 4 mounting screws, so you can adjust where the lever falls when locked to suit. Visually, the tool rest doesn't appear as robust as the rest of the lathe. But I can't fault its feel or performance, as I never noticed any vibration or slipping even out on the ends. The Banjo accepts a ¾" post, which is the same as my Myford, so I'm able to use the tool rests that came with it as well as the homemade special purpose ones I made for it.

In the couple of months I've had the 1018 I've used it as much as I can. Except for the stand ringing, it has yet to disappoint me. Most of the turning I've done has been a couple of batches of drop spindles which are quite appropriately sized for this size lathe. The 1018 performed smoothly and effortlessly on these small parts. I did do one larger piece of faceplate work, and the 1 hp motor provided more than adequate power. The motor and bearing noise is much less than my Myford, as I can hear the CD player much better now. The speed control works flawlessly.

I really love this lathe. It's quiet, solid, and vibration free. All the adjustments are smooth and positive, and it's been my experience that One-Way really stands behind their products. The only real question mark is availability. I would suggest you order one now, then start talking your spouse into it, rather than the other way around.

The author indulges his serious tool fetish in his basement in Hampstead Maryland. He welcomes comments, complaints and questions via e-mail at David@DavidReedSmith.com An electronic version of this article with color photographs is posted on his web site at www.DavidReedSmith.com