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Thread: Why do Sherline lathes and mills keep their value?

  1. #1
    Too_Many_Tools Guest

    Default Why do Sherline lathes and mills keep their value?

    One curious fact that I see is that Sherline lathes, mills and their accessories maintain their value.


    One would think the market would be flush with them since they have been sold for many yeats.

    I can see where Unimats have become collector's items which drives their prices up.

    But Sherlines have not reached that cult status as far as I can see.

    Your thoughts?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Edison Washington


    The potential market is bigger. Anybody can find room for a sherline. You can plug em in to any 110 volt wall socket.
    So the amount of people who could justify one, to themselves, or to significant others, is about 20 times as big, heck, maybe 100 times as big, as the people who can justify a 2000lb Bridgeport and a 4000lb lathe, along with electrical service for 2hp to 5hp motors, or 3 phase, and all the attendent support machines, tooling, etc.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Big Prairie Mi.


    I think it's because they are very well designed for the intended market. It's a compact, lightweight but very capable machine that is easily upgraded and expanded, or repaired. In short it's almost the perfect hobby/modeling lathe.

    They also have a well laid out site that is pretty much all encompassing with information suitable for all experience levels ranging from pure novice to highly experienced. I've seen hundreds of questions answered on various boards with a link to the sherline site ranging from (how to sharpen bits especially)

    I've never owned one, so don't interpret this as sales talk, but I have browsed the site and seen some of the work performed on them.

    I pretty much consider it the modern equivelent of the old 618.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Yorkshire, Centre of the known Universe


     Why do Sherline lathes and mills keep their value?
    For exactly the same reason "Myford" and "Unit-mat" COMMAND theirs, it's a Brag thing, not that they aren't good machine tools, but there is a "How high you can pee" factor involved.

    Spose it's the same when some start talking about the "King" lathe thing.

    Regards Ian.
    You might not like what I say,but that doesn't mean I'm wrong.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Grand Blanc Michigan


    I didn't know that the Sherlines kept their value, but I do know that in some industrial situations they can be a good value for second operation use.

    Where I work I purchased a couple of the lathes and mills for small part repair and prototype fabrication. We have had several occasions to rework or modify some thousands of production parts and a quick-load fixture in the mill was just the ticket. The little machines have paid for themselves many times over, sometimes within just a week of second op duty.

    The lathes are getting clapped out, but the spindles are still tight and good work is still done on them. Planning and compensation for slop in the gibs and leadscrews is required.
    Weston Bye - Author, The Mechatronist column, Digital Machinist magazine
    ~Practitioner of the Electromechanical Arts~

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Mount Clemens, Mi


    To add to what has already been said, support and tooling add ons. With the riser blocks in place on the lathe 6"dia and probably will fit longer work than most hobbyist need.

    The mill packs a lot of machining in a small foot print. and finally the better halves doesn't remind you, every time that you haven't used it in a while.
    Been there, probably broke it, doing that!
    I am not a lawyer, and never played one on TV!
    All the usual and standard disclaimers apply. Do not try this at home, use only as directed, No warranties express or implied, for the intended use or the suggested uses, Wear safety glasses, closed course, professionals only

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2003


    I think the quality for sure but the small size is a huge so to speak.

    1st lathe was a unimat
    then a sherline
    then a SB9
    now a hardinge copy.

    Only one I sold was the SB9. I had no choice, I needed the room for the feeler.

    My Sherline and unimat sit on the shelf in the basement. Someday I might cnc the sherline...

  8. #8
    Too_Many_Tools Guest


    That reminds me...a friend put up CL adds for a Sherline lathe and a South Bend lathe.

    He got over a hundred responses for the Sherline....three for the South Bend.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2009


    Like most have already stated, Sherlines keep their value becuase:

    1. Extremely high quality of machines and parts.
    2. High number of after market parts.
    3. Excellent customer service.
    3. The name brand (no doubt a result of the above.)

    I shopped for many many many months for a lathe, and ultimately bought a Sherline. Fabulous machine.
    Last edited by Sportandmiah; 10-13-2009 at 10:24 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Southwestern Ontario, Canada


    Good advertising.

    People new to the machining hobby and they are used mostly for hobby work see ads for Sherline's all over the magazines and shows, you don't see advertising much for old Southbends.

    People buy what is put in front of them even if it isn't new, the demand is still there so the cost stays up.

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