View Full Version : A South Bend 9" found me...

06-30-2004, 10:15 AM
Well after machining with my Sherline for a couple of years, I got a call from a friend saying we need to look at a lathe.

Went and looked at it last night, South Bend Model A, 9" 4 1/2 foot long. I copied "cat# CL770RG" off the headstock area and "12074KAX2 off the bed under the tailstock. Do these numbers mean anything?

Looks a lot like this one:


Except for the lever 1 is pointing toward the headstock and there is a cover over the headstock pulleys.

Also, the bed has a removable section under the chuck. Makes it a gap bed lathe, really cool!

Seems like a nice lathe.

I have a few questions:

1. How much do these weigh for moving purposes?

2. Whats a good brand 4 jaw chuck for the lathe? What spindle mount do I need?

3. What is the tailstock taper?

4. What is the headstock taper?

Thanks for any info on my soon to be new lathe.

06-30-2004, 11:14 AM
You can easily remove the tailstock, the cross slide, chuck, left cover. Unscrew the drum switch from the headstock. Take apart the countershaft to seperate the drive system and motor. I don't recall what it weighs exactly but two people can carry it.

The spindle is MT3, the tailstock is MT2. The number under the tailstock on the bed is the serial number. The spindle is threaded 1 1/2 X 8tpi. I have a 6" Bison 4 jaw that I like a lot.

Oh yeah, LEAVE the gap piece in place when moving it. BTW, that lathe is relatively new, they only started making the gap bed models in 1962.

[This message has been edited by Evan (edited 06-30-2004).]

06-30-2004, 12:46 PM
Man, you got lucky, What a find.
I love my 1941 Model C.

06-30-2004, 01:05 PM
Bison chucks are good value for the money.

I think the "X" in your serial number indicates a flame-hardened bed, which is Goodness. If you see no scraping marks, at all, along the bed, then it is flame hardened.

I've got a SB 10K gap bed, and mine warped at the gap when I moved it, so be gentle! Maybe the 9" gap bed version has better design in that regard, but the 10K gap bed IMO seriously lacks adequate "meat" at the gap point to maintain rigidity.

Evan's certianly correct, leave the gap piece in while moving it. The insert mounts on dowel pins so removing/replacing shouldn't be a problem if you need to use the gap feature.

06-30-2004, 01:24 PM
Thanks for the responses!

Hardened ways sounds good. I didn't see any scrap marks on the ways and that seemed strange, now I know why.

The lathe is still in the old owners garage so I can't play with it. Can someone tell me the operation of lever #1 above?

Also the 6 lobed star knob below #1 knob... This seemed to engage the power cross feed, but the direction of the crosslide was out. Is there a way to power infeed?

06-30-2004, 01:30 PM
That's what the lever is for. There are three positions for it. The center position disengages the feeds for threading.

06-30-2004, 01:32 PM
Sorry, I meant to add that the star wheel is indeed for the engagement of the feeds.The upper and lower positions of the lever determine feed directions.

06-30-2004, 01:38 PM
Almost right. The star wheel is for the friction clutch for feed engagement. The direction of the feed is controlled by a reversing lever, not the cross/longitudal feed selector on the apron. The position of the lever on the apron determines cross or longitudal feed. The feed reversing lever is just above and slightly left of the q.c. gearbox.

Alistair Hosie
06-30-2004, 01:39 PM
Lever 1 is for alternating between traversing the saddle along the bed and the crosslide across the saddle.
The small star shaped knob below it is the clutch when you tighten this the functions come into play slackening it will mean that they don't.
It should turn when engaged.you set the lever in the middle position for normal/nuetral turning I.e when you don't want to traverse ther bed or saddle /crosslide and top position is either the saddle movement and the bottom is crosslide either one or the other I would not move them without undoing the clutch each time the other lever to the right is the halfnut lever hope this helps but as said it remains in centre hole during normal turning,if in doubt email me this is similar to the uk version Boxford I may have a book for it if I can find it I will send it to you I will be in touch regards and well done Alistair

06-30-2004, 01:47 PM
I didn't have anyone around to help me when I went to pick up mine, so I got it from the garage to the tailgate by myself. Made the motor assembly on the second time around. I called for some help when I got to my house to unload it.
Just wanted to give you an idea of the weight, although a two man job, can be done if your stubborn.
David from jax

06-30-2004, 01:57 PM
ERBenoit, I stand corrected. It's been a while since I've used my Southbend and rather than checking it to make sure, I relied on my memory which, in and of itself, is a frightening thing! Steve

06-30-2004, 02:05 PM
Apparently my South Bend (1939)has a different set up. On my S.B. the feed direction (in/out), (right/left) is controlled by a lead screw reversing lever, not "lever 1" as in the picture. The "lever 1" on the apron selects cross or longitudal feed, on my lathe at least. In the picture, just below and left of the leftmost oil cup, appears to be a lead screw reversing lever, thus my reply.

Alistair Hosie
06-30-2004, 06:30 PM
isn't that what i said ?
I never mentioned backwards or forwards.feed direction is another thing I am talking about "engaging" or"not engaging" as the middle hole would be,the crosslide or saddle with this lever.
whether they go left to right or backwards or forwards is another thing as you say and is operated by a reversing lever,but that is not what i said.There should be as said three holes at lever no 1, middle is neutral I.e crosslide does not move or saddle does not move whether the go backwards or forwards is another matter and as you say another lever.Is this not correct? Alistair

06-30-2004, 06:33 PM
Get yourself a copy of South Bend's "How to Run a Lathe" book and it will explain a lot of what you're asking. Lindsay Publications sells a reprint, I think.

06-30-2004, 07:04 PM
I'm a Sherline "graduate" myself; you'll LOVE having a bigger lathe! Part of the fun is making new tooling, and/or adapting your Sherline tooling. I made tool holders for 3/8" square tools, but went ahead and made one for 1/4" square, since I had so many of those for the Sherline.

One of the best things is how easy parting becomes. I don't know if you used to use the .040" wide tool Sherline provided with their holder, but I found it was too flexible for many applications. I made myself a holder for a 1/16" wide parting tool, and parting goes SO much easier now.

If in doubt: size matters.

06-30-2004, 07:52 PM
Neat!Course you know all the parts in the world are on ebay.I almost had a nice one a couple years ago,but someone else beat me to it,most of the ones you see around are beat down and worn out.

06-30-2004, 09:42 PM
Sorry Alistair, I read too deeply into your post.

07-01-2004, 12:13 PM
Got it home last night, other than busting out a trailer marker light everything went well with 4 guys (moved the lathe and bench in one piece with motor on)

jeastwood, funny you should mention parting off, it's one of the things I want to try first because it's such a limited operation on a sherline.

SGW, when you mentioned "how to run a lathe" I remembered I bought the book about 4 years ago! Memory lapse at my age concerns me!

Alistair Hosie
07-01-2004, 12:28 PM
ERB not a problem good luck anything we/I can do to help anytime just ask regards and have fun Alistair

07-01-2004, 08:34 PM
"Busted a marker light out"?Round here me and the budds do that with a hammer BEFORE leaving the house,every voyage must have a proper chistening http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif