PDA

View Full Version : Has anyone seen a lathe like this?



Rif
07-10-2007, 01:41 PM
Hello,

I was wondering if anyone knows anything about an old lathe like this:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ih=017&sspagename=STRK%3AMEWA%3AIT&viewitem=&item=270143144873&rd=1&rd=1

It is listed as a Pratt and Whitney. I contacted the seller and there is a lead screw; but, no change gears. The bed hasn't been outside for very long...fortunately. I also noticed that it doesn't appear to have a compound.

On the http://www.lathes.co.uk web site there is no mention of a Pratt and Whitney lathe that looks like this one. However, it does resemble a Pond lathe and there is mention that Pond worked at Pratt and Whitney at one time.

For $150, it is hard to pass up. But, I don't want to buy something worthless.

Thanks,

Brian Reifsnyder

ERBenoit
07-10-2007, 02:40 PM
For $150, it is hard to pass up. But, I don't want to buy something worthless.


I wouldn't want you to either.

Not familiar with that particular lathe. I like old iron (as well as new iron).

A few things to consider:

1) Unless you know what to look for and how to evaluate an OLD lathe, (or any machine tool, regardless of age) you are taking your chances. The seller has indicated it "looks complete, doesn't know how to use it, or put it back together". That appears to be an honest statement that tells me they do not know if it it complete either. New machine tools may have lost some of the features common and necessary just to make an old machine tool capable of functioning. If you are not familiar with what you are looking at and for, RESEARCH. Don't buy in haste!

2) Without change gears, forget any threading or changing of feed rates.

3) Accesories?? I did not see any chucks, drive/faceplates etc. Tooling can become expensive. You would need at least a three jaw chuck to do anything. These items may cost you significantly more than your initial expense. As an example: It could possibly cost you $700.00 to outfit your $150.00 lathe. Is the lathe worthy of those additional expenses?? To some these additional costs are acceptable, to some not so.

Rif
07-10-2007, 03:34 PM
I wouldn't want you to either.

Not familiar with that particular lathe. I like old iron (as well as new iron).

A few things to consider:

1) Unless you know what to look for and how to evaluate an OLD lathe, (or any machine tool, regardless of age) you are taking your chances. The seller has indicated it "looks complete, doesn't know how to use it, or put it back together". That appears to be an honest statement that tells me they do not know if it it complete either. New machine tools may have lost some of the features common and necessary just to make an old machine tool capable of functioning. If you are not familiar with what you are looking at and for, RESEARCH. Don't buy in haste!


This is probably one of my two biggest problems with this lathe. I don't know what it is and it doesn't appear to have a compound.




2) Without change gears, forget any threading or changing of feed rates.


Yeah, I figured I would have to make them. That is not a big problem...just another strike against this particular lathe.




3) Accesories?? I did not see any chucks, drive/faceplates etc. Tooling can become expensive. You would need at least a three jaw chuck to do anything. These items may cost you significantly more than your initial expense. As an example: It could possibly cost you $700.00 to outfit your $150.00 lathe. Is the lathe worthy of those additional expenses?? To some these additional costs are acceptable, to some not so.

The lack of a faceplate is probably the biggest problem here, for me. How do you make a faceplate without a faceplate? I was looking through the Gingery books last night for a clue. It appears that he made the first faceplate by casting the spindle on it...that is not something I would do here. I was thinking that I could make a mini faceplate adapter type thing on my Sherline tools and mount a bigger round piece of rough stock on that to turn the first faceplate. Once a faceplate is made I figure that the chuck back plates could then be made. I don't have too much of a problem with the extra costs because it would still be much cheaper than a larger new lathe.

I mentioned, in a previous thread, that I was going to buy a new lathe. I just figured that I would take another look at what is already out there within reasonable driving distance.

Thanks,

Brian

Mike W
07-10-2007, 03:36 PM
I would pass on that one even if it was free. My Clausing 6300 came complete with a very good price. I spent about 250 hours getting it into shape. While it was fun, I have no desire to do that again.

kendall
07-10-2007, 04:02 PM
My very first lathe came with nothing at all, no chucks centers tool holders etc.

Made up a 'sorta' faceplpate with a spindle from a chevyS10 mini-truck, welded a chunk of sill anchor to it, ('L' shaped bar with threads at one end cast into concrete to anchor walls down) long enough to stick through the spindle. bolted a large chunk of steel to that which I threaded then mounted to the spindle and turned to accept a Ford 300 I6 flywheel, which I then used to make the other needed items with.

Toolholders and boring bars were made with old circ saw blades and chunks of steel I had laying around.

was a very interesting learning experience, and I think it taught me a great deal about machining.

I think that if I had had access to all the 'proper' equipment, I would have taken a great deal longer to realize the importance of tool angles etc when threading, even today I smile when I hear someone saying it's nearly impossible to pick up a thread, I remounted that stupid thing a half dozen times before it fit correctly.

Prior to that I had never run a lathe, or realy done any kind of machine work

It was fun, and now, no accesories doesn't scare me away from buying a lathe if the price is right.

I've always been very willing to jump into the unknown with both feet though.

Ken.

joeby
07-11-2007, 05:32 AM
I have a Pratt & Whitney 16" lathe that I've been working on.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v321/joeby/IM000993.jpg

There are some similarities between it and the one you're looking at; but the Ebay lathe appears to have a rise and fall cross slide. I can't tell from the picture; but it could be a weighted carriage also.

As far as I know, mine was built between 1860-1870 or thereabouts. The Ebay lathe could be older.

Also, it may have a belt driven leadscrew for feeds, if so you can do without change gears for awhile.

Kevin

Evan
07-11-2007, 06:47 AM
That's a beautiful machine you have there.

Rif
07-11-2007, 08:33 AM
Kevin,

Your doing a nice job on that lathe and it is very similar to the ebay lathe.

What is a "rise and fall" cross slide and a weighted carriage?

It appears that the tailstock can be offset...am I correct in this assumption? Are there graduations on the handles...or is this lathe too early for that?

I might bid $50 and see if I get it. Though not having a compound would be annoying, I can deal with that.

I am guessing that this e-bay lathe is somewhere in the 1860-1870 time period...based upon what I can find out online.

Thanks,

Brian

joeby
07-11-2007, 10:14 AM
Thanks guys, I have a lot to do yet; but it's getting there. I have a couple more gears to make before I get the spindle bearings set up, then it should move along a little faster.

The early lathes used the rise and fall setup instead of a compound rest. There would be a large screw at the far end of the cross slide so you could raise and lower the tool for centerline adjustment.

Take a look at this thread:
http://www.practicalmachinist.com/cgi-bin/ubbcgi/ultimatebb.cgi/topic/11/1857.html?

These old machines are a source of amazement to me. In the time period they were built, everything was designed on paper and built to be better than the ones they were machined on. You can see some of the features have been carried over to machines being built today. Mine even has v-ways; but they are tiny compared to any newer machine. The workmanship was very impressive also, considering the fits and finishes they managed to obtain.

Kevin

Rif
07-11-2007, 10:30 AM
I would pass on that one even if it was free. My Clausing 6300 came complete with a very good price. I spent about 250 hours getting it into shape. While it was fun, I have no desire to do that again.

A big part of my problem is that there isn't too much available in my area that is bigger than a South Bend 9; but, small enough to transport without serious equipment. I also have to get it into my basement.

Regards,

Brian

kendall
07-11-2007, 01:44 PM
that was my problem here, tons of lathes available at a decent price, but getting them home would have doubled the cost.

Now if your luck runs like mine, you'll settle for a decent lathe, then a week or two later find a great lathe right next door.

works the same with trucks and motorcycles here.

Ken.

Rif
07-11-2007, 01:45 PM
Ok, I put a bid in on it.

If I get it, is there any source of information for which I can use to tell me what is missing? i.e. What change gears I have to make, etc.?

Kevin, thanks for the link to the information about the rise and fall cross slide.

Thanks,

Brian

joeby
07-11-2007, 01:56 PM
Rif,
There isn't a lot of information, that I've found anyway, on these old machines.

If it is indeed a Pratt & Whitney, I'll pass along what I can. If it is not, you can dig up quite a bit of info on the net. There seems to be a good many people resurrecting the old stuff.

These old machines aren't overly complex, common sense will take you a long way.

Kevin

Rif
07-15-2007, 06:46 PM
Ok, I won the auction today and I am planning on picking the lathe up sometime within the week. I guess I'll find out how much of a lathe I get for $49.95? :D

Brian