I have never ran one myself but they have a good reputation. 14x40 is a good size. Things to consider: does it cut both metric and imperial threads? Do you have to change gears to switch? Does it come with a steady rest? I’m on my second lathe and am looking forward to my third.... Have you looked at Precision Matthews? Their 14x40 is pretty nice for the price..
Looking for my second lathe, first was a small south bend 9a. The Nardini will cut both standard and metric threads, comes with steady but no follow rest. Comparing a pm 1440gt to this Nardini, The pm is 1/2 the weight and over double to cost.
The 1440 is a good all around machine. I've owned two of them. The older ones, painted green where made by Nardini when it was an independent Company. Very good TL lathe, excellent bearings in the head stock. 7500.00 new in 92 or so. Notice that the gearbox is not set up with the std. gears to cut 32 TPI. There is a change gear available and easy to swap out.
Now, the "newer" Nardinis are painted an off white and much inferior to the early ones. They where nationalized by the Government down there and crap ensued. Our second one was cheapened to the point that I had to replace the head stock bearings ( advertised as Gammet but actually cheap shit from Russia and India) at the get go. The way wipers where elimminated , the electric controls where of a cheaper brand, etc. DON'T buy one of the white ones!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I suppose all of the chinese made import lathes leak oil, but I've read about guys on a couple of machinist forums who've gone through theirs and at least slowed the leaks, if not eliminated them altogether. I bought a PM1440HD from Precision Matthews more than 10yrs ago, mainly because it was very similar to the Jet 1340 I'd bought as my first lathe. I've been through the seals on the controls on the PM lathe, and can't really tell if I even slowed the leakage...not much need to change the oil in the headstock, because I have to top it off with fresh oil fairly regularly. However, the spindle length of both my machines is a limiting factor - they're both over 24" long, which makes it necessary to work around that issue when trying to do through the spindle work on shorter bbls. If I'd known then what I know now, I've have forgone some of the weight of these two lathes in exchange for a shorter spindle - or at least looked for a machine with both the weight & shorter spindle. Not many chances to examine lathes or other machine tools in person out here in western Kansas, but it'd have been worth it to travel to get a close-up look at several machines before investing in one. I can do good work with the PM; reamers that have been prone to chatter on the JET usually cut smoothly on the PM, yet both are heavy in today's market, weighing in at a ton or more.
Whatever, sounds like the Nardini you're looking at might be a good choice - I remember reading good things about them when I was looking for my 1st lathe in 2004. From what I read, I'd have liked to have been able to find one out here, but there's darned few machine shops in my area, and the ones I've visited usually had bigger machines for stuff like oil field work.