I use to own a Unimat 3 mini lathe many years ago and I really enjoyed it for small work. Looking back now, since owning my Asian Lathe and Boxford it was tiny in comparison but there was somthing about its size that has appealed to me. I`ve been looking since summer to find a tiny lathe perhaps eventually for turning small parts or as a dedicated clock wheel cutter and the Sherline or the Taig/Petol were always rated more highly than the unimat.
Last week I collected a peatol lathe and it really is smashing. The guy was great, it has a touch of surface rust as it has been in the shed but it will come up great when I have more time to look at it. It was such a pitty, he used it to make violin and bow parts, his work was absolutely first class but his eye sight had failed him. The lead screw mod is excellent and seems very well done. He also chucked in a box full of taps, dies…etc and a couple of plunge clocks including a nice mitutoyo. Really impressed with it so far and hope to start getting some use out of it soon.
Specs of the Taig/Peatol lathe: http://www.cartertools.com/specific.html