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What lathe is this ?

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  • What lathe is this ?

    Hi all,

    I may potentially be buying my first machine later this evening:

    Supposedly 550mm BC.

    Was originally planning to get a new 10x22 chinese lathe - but can hopefully get that beast for 1/10'th the price - so it'll get me by for a while.

    Does anyone recognise the brand/model/type etc ?
    Its in australia so could be some unknown manufacturer

    The listing said it has no threadcutting ability - but it looks like it has a leadscrew there - would that just be a single speed powerfeed ?

    Last edited by kniteshade; 10-18-2006, 11:30 PM.

  • #2

    It has a vaguely Britannia look about it, though there is no direct equivalent on Tony's Lathes website.

    there were other makes of lathe commonly built to similar designs but on the lathe in your photo the headstock, tailstock, bed and stand (with bearing for treadle assembly), seem to have a lot in common with some of the Britannia ones illustrated. There is no half nut assembly on the apron as shown in the Britannia pictures though. In the illustrations of a couple of the Britannias it looks possible that the half nut assembly is a bolt-on attachment on the apron; if so, this may be missing on the lathe in your photo. Since it has both a leadscrew and a rack, it is almost certain that it was originally capable of threading. I can't see how the leadscrew could be just a power feed unless there was some way to disengage it while the rack was being used to move the carriage. Some old small lathes had a leadscrew/feedscrew with permanently engaged nuts, but had no rack, and used a handle or handwheel on the end of the leadscrew to move the carriage manually.

    I have seen references to several old Britannias here in Australia, so its likely that quite a number were imported.



    • #3
      Can you change the gear ratio between the spindle and lead screw? If not, you'll be limited to just one pitch.

      The larger problem is apparent lack of a threading dial. Without that it's going to be difficult to pick up the start of the threads on each pass. You could leave the carriage feed engaged and reverse the machine between passes. Tedious and slow, but it would work.

      Any products mentioned in my posts have been endorsed by their manufacturer.


      • #4
        It doesn't look like the leadscrew feed ratio is meant to be changed. I think I see a handle behind the cord draped over the carriage that engages the leadscrew feed. It's likely just meant as a single speed power feed. Does it even have a thru spindle hole? That is a very basic lathe but it still beats no lathe. Does the gap plate still exist? Without it it will have very limited usefulness.
        Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here


        • #5

          Can you post a photo of the headstock end showing the gear train from the headstock spindle to the lead screw? This will give us an idea if it could be set up for threading. The extension of the leadscrew past the large gear on the headstock end might indicate that alternative gear trains could be set up for threading, but without seeing the gear arrangement between the headstock spindle and the leadscrew it's difficult to say. Is Evan correct that there is a handle to engage the feed hidden behind the cord draped over the carriage?



          • #6
            Buy the Chi Com lathe you will be happier.Poorer but happier.

            Asbestos suit is on,I'm waiting.


            • #7
              I'd go the Chi Com too.
              With all the guards you'd have to make to make that safe. You may as well just put a fence around it and stay away.
              Just my opinion. I already bought my Chi Com. It does the job.


              • #8
                No thread cutting


                At first glance it looks like it would cut threads with change gears but I don't see a half nut or dial so maybe not. Neat lathe though. I like th gap bed.



                • #9
                  In my arrogant opinion........ (IMAO)

                  Do not buy it.

                  There is enough missing that you would want, to make you crazy when you want to do the stuff you know that "a lathe" can do.

                  it is just close enough to being a lathe to be sorta useful, without being really useful.

                  Buy a commie lathe if you can find nothing else besides this.

                  Keep eye on ball.
                  Hashim Khan


                  • #10
                    I also recommend passing on this lathe.

                    Keep looking. Maybe soemthing better will turn up. As a last resort you can buy the Chinese lathe if nothing else turns up.

                    Anyone notice the four position tool post's base is welded to the cross slide?


                    • #11
                      I say get the Chicom as well.
                      The 10x22, would that be the Sieg C6?


                      • #12
                        Buy it only if you want fixing up a clapped-out lathe to be your hobby. If you want to actually DO things with a lathe...pass on it.
                        Try to make a living, not a killing. -- Utah Phillips
                        Don't believe everything you know. -- Bumper sticker
                        Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -- Will Rogers
                        There are lots of people who mistake their imagination for their memory. - Josh Billings
                        Law of Logical Argument - Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
                        Don't own anything you have to feed or paint. - Hood River Blackie


                        • #13
                          I actually gave some good advice to a newby.

                          10 -19-2006

                          and they said it couldn't be done.


                          • #14
                            If you want to get started turning , i would not get that old girl as it would mean no end of frustration, in fact that lathe is almost useless.get another machine.

                            However me personnally , im a sucker for old machines and i would get it with an eye to restoring it to working order.(it would look nice beside my shaper.)

                            this is a big expensive task,that will take along time .

                            that machine is the generic type of the time , most manufacturers in the UK(like Britannia, broadbent and so on ) offered the identical lathe , invarying sizes .

                            note no dials on the handles , probably solid spindle, with a screw at the end to take up play.normally no compound slide on a machine like that.

                            the gap should have a bridge piece and also you need apile of gears.


                            • #15
                              "... the four position tool post's base is welded to the cross slide?"

                              That's not surprising since the entire topslide appears to be homemade.

                              Look for an old Taiwan-made Jet in good shape. Sure, they've got a few minor shortcomings, but I wouldn't trade my old 1024 for a roomful of any of the other lathes I've seen for twice the price I paid.

                              Any products mentioned in my posts have been endorsed by their manufacturer.