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  • Clausing lathe opinion

    Found a lathe for sale for a decent price. The ad says it's a Clausing, 12" swing, but doesn't say distance between centers.

    The guy says he inherited it and doesn't know much about it (typical), but he says there's several boxes of accessories (the contents of which remain a mystery). The pictures show what appear to be some collets, but they're kind of blurry. The pictures also show a 3-jaw chuck.

    Is this a good buy for $800 assuming it's not totally thrashed to oblivion? What's the best way to check for reasonable way wear without being a jackass with a dial indicator?

    Thanks for opinions.

  • #2
    Originally posted by isaac338
    Found a lathe for sale for a decent price. The ad says it's a Clausing, 12" swing, but doesn't say distance between centers.

    The guy says he inherited it and doesn't know much about it (typical), but he says there's several boxes of accessories (the contents of which remain a mystery). The pictures show what appear to be some collets, but they're kind of blurry. The pictures also show a 3-jaw chuck.

    Is this a good buy for $800 assuming it's not totally thrashed to oblivion? What's the best way to check for reasonable way wear without being a jackass with a dial indicator?

    Thanks for opinions.
    As long it was not at a foundry where it never seen lube it cant be in too bad of shape.

    $800 seems cheap, I can see why you wonder about it being beat to hell.
    I say scoop it up, oil it up and clean it and if nothing else you can sell it. Odds are you will keep it.

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    • #3
      Well, I went out and saw the pile of tooling that came with it and carried it to the truck (in many pieces, thing is damn heavy). It's got all the change gears (no gearbox unfortunately), as well as a small 3 jaw, a small 4 jaw, a huge (like 10") 4 jaw, and three boxes with tons of home made tooling, a milling attachment, a couple of rests, a few drill chucks, a collet closer, a rack of collets, and then a bunch of mill tools (slot cutters, end mills, that kind of thing). Also a pile of broaches and bushings. Pretty rad haul for $750, I think.
      Last edited by isaac338; 11-24-2009, 09:13 PM.

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      • #4
        What??? no picture gloat????
        Ernie (VE7ERN)

        May the wind be always at your back

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        • #5
          Originally posted by dockrat
          What??? no picture gloat????
          I just unpacked it all from the boxes. Evidently the guy was an avid woodworker because every single thing is covered in a layer of sawdust - ugh. I'll get some pics when I find a buddy to help me get the bed out of the truck

          The serial number is 2704S - does anyone know when this lathe was made?
          Last edited by isaac338; 11-24-2009, 10:43 PM.

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          • #6
            Some good information here.

            http://www.lathes.co.uk/clausing/index.html

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            • #7
              I emailed Clausing - they say it's a model 102 built in 1943. They had a few pages of an owner's manual but that's all.

              The manual mentions an oiling chart included with the manual, which obviously I don't have. Does anyone have a copy of this? I'd like to oil the machine properly.

              Thanks.

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              • #8
                isaac338,

                I don't have the oil chart for the 100-2 Clausing lathe but this is the general oiling instructions for the 100 series lathes.



                Most of the Clausing lathes of that series are very closely related so if you wouldn't mind posting a photo of your lathe I'll see if my manual (100-3) is close enough. If it is, I'll PM you for an email address where I can send it to you. Please give me some time though, as I need to digitize it.

                Mike
                .
                Last edited by Mike Burdick; 11-25-2009, 09:21 PM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Mike Burdick
                  isaac338,

                  I don't have the oil chart for the 100-2 Clausing lathe but this is the general oiling instructions for the 100 series lathes.



                  Most of the Clausing lathes of that series are very closely related so if you wouldn't mind posting a photo of your lathe I'll see if my manual (100-3) is close enough. If it is, I'll PM you for an email address where I can send it to you. Please give me some time though, as I need to digitize it.

                  Mike
                  .
                  Mike,

                  That'd be much appreciated. As far as I gather from lathes.co.uk, the 100 series are virtually identical save a few small differences and the quick change gearbox.

                  I'll try and post some pictures. Thanks.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by isaac338
                    What's the best way to check for reasonable way wear without being a jackass with a dial indicator?
                    Bring the saddle near the headstock, snug the saddle lock so there is light drag. Then run the saddle to the tailstock. If there is wear you will not make it to the tailstock. This trick works on most lathes and mills.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by gda
                      Bring the saddle near the headstock, snug the saddle lock so there is light drag. Then run the saddle to the tailstock. If there is wear you will not make it to the tailstock. This trick works on most lathes and mills.
                      That makes sense. I tried it and it got slightly snugger towards the middle but didn't lock up, so apparently there's not a ton of wear.

                      edit: now with pics!



                      the tooling:



                      Last edited by isaac338; 11-25-2009, 11:38 PM.

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                      • #12
                        Cool.
                        It came with milling cutters because it has a milling attachment. If that's a first lathe, that's a pretty nice one to start with. Collet drawtube so I assume those are up & running too. Did it come with a steady rest?
                        Some of it is a little "old-school", including the lathe itself, but not too old and there sure is a bunch of stuff with it. Hell, figuring out what everything is and does will be fun & educational. I'd say you did pretty OK there.

                        After a year or two with it, you may jones for a more updated lathe with more modern bells, whistles and conveniences, but there's some value in what you have there that will go a long way toward (if not beyond) that next machine.
                        Last edited by tyrone shewlaces; 11-26-2009, 02:24 AM.

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                        • #13
                          If you have the room, when you upgrade to a newer/bigger machine, keep the old one...there have been times when I've had something set up in my 11x24" Rockwell lathe and I needed a small part/pin/screw and I've been able to make it on my Dad's old Atlas 6" that he bought new in 1929.

                          David
                          David Kaiser
                          “You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.”
                          ― Robert A. Heinlein

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by tyrone shewlaces
                            Cool.
                            It came with milling cutters because it has a milling attachment. If that's a first lathe, that's a pretty nice one to start with. Collet drawtube so I assume those are up & running too. Did it come with a steady rest?
                            Some of it is a little "old-school", including the lathe itself, but not too old and there sure is a bunch of stuff with it. Hell, figuring out what everything is and does will be fun & educational. I'd say you did pretty OK there.

                            After a year or two with it, you may jones for a more updated lathe with more modern bells, whistles and conveniences, but there's some value in what you have there that will go a long way toward (if not beyond) that next machine.
                            Yep, it's got a set of collets (of dubious quality, some appear rusty but are probably usable), two steady rests (one home made, one Clausing), a follow rest, tailstock turret attachment, the milling attachment, a couple of shop-made ball turners, micrometer carriage stop, a bunch of face plates, some dogs, and even other mill tooling like a shopmade boring head (which appears quite well made). There's also tons of stuff that I don't even recognize. It's going to take a while to sort through it all, for sure.

                            I think the guy who amassed this tooling was a skilled machinist, judging by some of his shopmade tooling.

                            It's my first lathe, but with the whack of stuff it came with it should keep me dabbling for quite some time. It's got all the change wheels so I don't foresee much it can't do that I'll need it to do, save turning something bigger than its swing. It's also nice that it came with tons of pre-ground HSS tooling so I can putz around without worrying about having to grind extra tooling, or worrying about trashing my only HSS tool!

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                            • #15
                              I had some time to turn a few pieces of aluminum today. Should this thing really be bogging on light cuts in aluminum? Doing straight turning, feeding at what appeared to me to be a reasonable rate with a depth of .020" or even .010", the chuck would slow and even stall entirely.

                              Either I'm feeding way too fast (which I don't think I am - I don't know how to measure it, but it was pretty slow), my tool is really dull (entirely possible), or something is up with the clutch mechanism.

                              Any advice? Thanks

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