I have had a wood shop for years and last Christmas bought myself the small 10X18 Harbor freight lathe for about $150 after 20% discount. Thought I was getting in cheep Its been a year and about $1000 dollars later I just did a slight upgrade to a Grizzly G0462 Not the lathe I wanted but the one I could afford. I have mostly turned bowls, pens, and bottle stoppers and with the larger lathe I hope to get into more hollow forms I would call my skills as beginner/getting better. I have joined the MN wood turners association and have been going to the meetings and this past week my wife Joanna also joined the club. So now I dont have to hide the $$$ going down into the hobby looking forward to being a member as I have been on a car forum and found it to be very helpful.