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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-03-2009 08:58 PM
cranky1 I'm with 4 Jaw....not because he's a moderator but because I'm a 30 year machinist and have been there done that. The lathe I have now is a 15" Leblond Regal and really like to have one a bit bigger one but that's what I have. It was 6000.00 back when machines were bringing decent money (early 90's) and the same machine today might only bring 3000. Once the economy takes off again, and it will, machines will go up again. The Regal isn't a heavy duty machine but it's a good precision unit and does well and has been reliable. It does all I ask of it and more. I just hope it doesn't break down because it won't be cheap to fix lol
05-02-2009 02:00 PM
4 Jaw Chuck
Originally Posted by JoshF
What is a Bull Gear and countershaft plate? Do you know if anyone makes parts for these?

It is starting to sound like I would be better off without this thing, which is disappointing, but I am sure another one will come along at some point.

Thank you for all of the helpful information.

- Josh
A bull gear is a large gear that is located behind the chuck spindle bearing, you can see this gear in the photo I posted of another similar lathe. The bull gear when engaged allows you to turn low rpms for turning large work.

The countershaft plate and motor mount has the second set of gearing so you can just shift the belt from pulley to pulley to get different speeds, typically this is done by releasing the pressure on the belt by pulling a lever and then moving the belt on the countershaft to another pulley. Have a look at this forum page for pictures of other lathes, all lathes do the same thing so will see how other manufacturers build their machines.

I don't want to discurage you but what you have there is someones attempt to turn the lathe into a wood lathe, hence why the bull gear and countershaft plate is gone...seen it before. The amount of money spent trying to find parts (the shipping is what kills ya, its heavy!) and restoring the unit is not worth it.

However if all you intend to do is turn at one speed and one feed, then what you have will work...especially if you don't have the feed gearing stack. Having worked with the exact unit you have there I can tell you trying to accomplish work with such an old style lathe is an exercise in frustration, you will forever be working around its shortcomings.

I suggest you take a course at your local college and work with their modern machinery and get some experience, learning how not to lose fingers will be one of the more valuable lessons you will learn. They will have an old unit some where you can try out and you will see how much hassle it is to work with.

If you need to polish a shaft or just turn a diameter what you have will work just fine, many shops I worked in had an old lathe in the corner (just like what you have) for polishing since the abrasive is hard on the lathe ways of the good equipment.

Just be realistic about what to expect from what you have there, it needs a lot of work, it is missing most of the parts that make a lathe useful, the spindle won't have a large through hole so what you can chuck is limited, and you have no tooling to start with.

Take a course, once you do I think you will see what you have is largely a heavy chunk of iron.
05-01-2009 05:43 PM
powerrodsmike Good forum for machine tools, nice guys, lots of knowledge..

There is a forum for antique machines and a Southbend specific forum too.
You might be able to find the gears for your lathe there too, or at least get an idea what they look like...

When I bought my 14x48 Graziano the folks there were very helpful in filling in some of the blanks.

Learning lathework is fun, even if the machine is a million years old...
I had a 1922 Lodge & Shipley 14 x 60 and was going to restore it, but lost interest when I got my 59 Sheldon and spent my time making chips instead of fixing machinery...

A while back a guy offered me a fairly large Leblond, ( all he said was it was WAY bigger than my 14x48 ),all in pieces, ready to restore...All I had to do was go pick it up, but I really don't need another 6000 pound jigsaw puzzle...

Ebay is a good place to pick up tooling, with a bunch of surplus machinery and tooling out there it sells for almost pennies on the dollar.

Later, mikey
05-01-2009 10:52 AM
oldred Considering you don't have anything in it you should not be at all disappointed. Sure it will be limited as to what you can do but it will be far from useless and you can learn the basics plus you do have a valuable antique, not worth a large sum but not at all worthless either. This thing can truly be a learning experience and as long as you don't invest a lot of money in parts/tooling that would be specific to that model what you do spend will transfer over to that newer lathe that I am confident you are going to be looking for soon!

Whatever you decide don't trash that old machine as there definitly are people out there that would love to have it, just as we here like to work with old cars there is a fairly large group that is dedicated to old shop machinery.
05-01-2009 10:14 AM
Originally Posted by 4 Jaw Chuck
Thats some good advice, I just noticed there is no bull gear and the motor mount and countershaft plate is missing. Include the no quick change and gear set you have a very limited piece of equipment in terms of usefulness.

It was free for a reason.
What is a Bull Gear and countershaft plate? Do you know if anyone makes parts for these?

It is starting to sound like I would be better off without this thing, which is disappointing, but I am sure another one will come along at some point.

Thank you for all of the helpful information.

- Josh
04-30-2009 08:08 PM
lathe stuff

I can't see who wrote this but someone mentioned that you would be better off w/a modern lathe...we'll, yeh..And more monetarily challenged too!..No fooling, the modern lathe would be mo-betta, but which one....I suggest you get the small lathe going and maybe even practice w/it on the nights when your not in your Basic Machining class..Once you have a clue about what the lathe will do and what you wanna do w/it {comes w/time on the lathe} you will be better equiped to make a informed decision...In a machining class you'll be surrounded w/people who will challenge and inform you..You'll probably be rubbing shoulders w/people who work in machine shops and ,just by assoication,will open new doors for you.Knowledge {like a dumb question} is cheap...dumb mistakes {unlike dumb questions} are expensive.
Someone said machining is addictive...yes it's alot like having a bottomless toybox out in the garage..
G-luck, Randy
04-30-2009 07:50 PM
4 Jaw Chuck
Originally Posted by cranky1
Imo, that lathe will only frustrate you. If it were me, I'd clean it up, make it operational and sell it and then go look for a more modern machine.
Thats some good advice, I just noticed there is no bull gear and the motor mount and countershaft plate is missing. Include the no quick change and gear set you have a very limited piece of equipment in terms of usefulness.

It was free for a reason.
04-30-2009 11:53 AM
cranky1 Imo, that lathe will only frustrate you. If it were me, I'd clean it up, make it operational and sell it and then go look for a more modern machine. With the weak economy, there's lots of deals to be had but there might be someone that is out looking for a collectors piece and will buy yours. I have no idea if a collector's market even exists but a modern machine has so much more to offer and will be much easier to operate and consume less time doing it. But if you decide to keep it, read up on lathe safety so you will at least be aware of the dangers. Even a small lathe can do major bodily damage. No loose clothing, no long sleeves, gloves or long hair. Learning how to run a lathe is a long time experience and some old timers will say they have forgotten more than a newbie will ever learn lol
04-30-2009 11:03 AM
oldred Tool prices can be rough and the initial cost of the lathe can be the cheapest part.

I bought a new Chinese Lathe (14x40) rather than try to rebuild my well used older 16" machine and so far it is doing just fine, I have found that the larger import machines from 12x36 on up are not at all bad, certainly not even in the same ballgame as the old American/European iron but quite usable (and affordable) anyway. I kind of figured 4 Jaw would weigh in on this one and sure enough his usual wealth of knowledge put everything in a much clearer perspective! There is more info in that one post than I have seen on these old machines anywhere and as common as they seem to be we need to save this post for possible future reference.
04-30-2009 10:49 AM
jaguarxk120 Try Wholesale Tool at many of their prices are good.
04-30-2009 09:58 AM

I was really shocked when i went out to buy tooling for my Lathe, I paid $400 for it (12x36 Taiwan made , but pretty nice for 4K) and almost that much for the quick change tool post..... Prices are horrid.... I look at the on-line auctions for tooling now, much better......
04-29-2009 09:33 PM
4 Jaw Chuck Thats a South Bend, prewar...if I had to guess I would say circa 1911.

I used one identical to her (all lathes are women BTW), the shaft below is for bench mounting with a countershaft...back in the days when shops had powered countershafts running through them from an outside steam or electric motor.

She needs a lot of TLC before I would even put power to it, those babbit bearings won't take carbide speeds so stick to HSS. Hope you got the gears with it so you can change feed, kinda limits the usefulness without them. It needs a good cleaning, when adjusting the gears on the feed use a strip of paper to get the clearance right, those old gears tend to not run true on the pitch diameter so don't run it too tight.

A quick change tool post is nice but on these old lathes the carriage keeps the original post bolt so far from the spindle centerline you will need special holders for the tool blanks. With this lathe we just used the original tool holders and just inverted the cup under the post to hold the tool flat, you need to be able to reach out with the tool holder and need the length given with the original tool holders.

Don't go nuts with power, they don't have the rigidity for over 2HP...remember in the old days they used light cuts and slow feeds, flat belts slip at high horsepowers so even though the vee belt retrofit you have already is capable of transmitting more power don't do it.

My eye twitches when I see this old beauty because I spent more time playing with them than I ever wanted to, keep the spindle bearings well lubricated and adjusted properly (its shimmed), get it mounted straight and clean it up and she will turn lots of work for you.

BTW STP mixed 50/50 with 10wt mineral oil works great for a spindle oil and helps with vibration, we replaced the drip feed cups with felt wicks in the headstock to extend the time between lubricating the spindle...constant squirts from the oil can to fill the cup are a PITA once the spindle babbit is worn.

Here's a similar one.

04-28-2009 10:24 PM
406 bug
Originally Posted by Mike H
I would buy a quick change type tool post. and get some incerted carbide tooling for it. Use a 370 grade for general turning, try to buy your tooling US made the import stuff is junk and if you are just starting out you need to have tooling that will repeat if you break one and need to chane in the middle of a job.

I started with a 12" Atlas fladbed and now have a 14" Rockwell and a series 1 Bridgeport in my front garage that stay busy making money for me.

You will find all kinds of things you can make with a lathe here are a few pictures of the machines and some work I have done with them.
Nice equipment and great fab/ machine work. Just one Question: What prupose does the lower loop around the crank pulley serve?
04-28-2009 08:32 PM
JoshF I just looked at what seems to be the oldest Clausing model. They say it has roller bearings on the spindle. Mine has Babbitt bearings. Do you know if they had different options or if I need to keep looking?

Originally Posted by oldred
Looks like a pre-war Clausing and it is probably a very usable machine if it is not too sloppy. What tooling you will need is a good question but the list is endless and I would suggest not spending much on anything that will not be usable on a newer machine. I would suggest buying only what you really need at first and, in all due respect to Mikes suggestion, a quick change tool post would be nice but not really necessary IMO and the $200 or so it would cost would buy a lot of bits and other parts. A good live center for the tail stock and a drill chuck are almost "have to haves" and of course you will need a dial indicator with stand, mics, calipers, etc.

Be warned, you are about to become addicted to a habit that will be impossible to break!
04-28-2009 06:52 PM
Originally Posted by jaguarxk120
What is on the two metal plates behind the wheel that says master?
The top plate on the transmission (in the photo) has:

Speed Ranger
Style #112774
Size 742Q
Const. orque 7.5 Inch-Pounds

The bottom plate is the list of approved oils and some cautions

On top of the motor:

Master AC Motor
Type RA
1725 RPM
Cont. Duty 40 (degrees) C
1/2 Horse

Also, on the underside of the table it has 13 190 cast into it. The 3 is difficult to read and could be a different number.
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