Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Looking at a lathe that doesnt run.

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Looking at a lathe that doesnt run.

    I have been scrounging around looking for a bigger lathe. I found one candidate that might work or might be one to stay away from depending on what I find. A south bend 9" that was taken off its bench years ago and is missing some small parts. Other than looking for gouges in the bed and turning everything by hand, Is there any steps I should take to make sure its a keeper? I do have a long 36" mechanics straight edge if that will help? Its not a machinist one, but it has a ground edge that's supposed to be accurate enough for checking the aliment of heads and blocks, etc.
    Thanks, Don

  • #2
    Originally posted by donf
    I have been scrounging around looking for a bigger lathe. I found one candidate that might work or might be one to stay away from depending on what I find. A south bend 9" that was taken off its bench years ago and is missing some small parts. Other than looking for gouges in the bed and turning everything by hand, Is there any steps I should take to make sure its a keeper? I do have a long 36" mechanics straight edge if that will help? Its not a machinist one, but it has a ground edge that's supposed to be accurate enough for checking the aliment of heads and blocks, etc.
    Thanks, Don
    Look for wear on the bed under the chuck , if you can get to see one that is complete , try to get a cost of the missing parts, at least if it turns andyou have some mechanical skills it could be a good priject.
    Michael

    Comment


    • #3
      All depends on what you're looking for, I suppose. If it's cheap and you've got the time to mess around it might be worth while. Me, I'd never touch it--something like that belongs in the scrap heap...
      Keith
      __________________________
      Just one project too many--that's what finally got him...

      Comment


      • #4
        If you have not seen this already, read the info here:

        http://www.mermac.com/

        Good starting advice on how to quickly assess a machine from a guy who was in the business.

        FYI

        Comment


        • #5
          If the owner/seller could not arrange for the lathe to be operable and let me try it I'd give it a miss. I'd only need a single-phase machine and I have a very good portable "Honda" 2KW gen-set which should run that lathe easily.

          But given that I pretty well always settle on new Chinese machines which are pretty cheap and not too bad that lathe up for sale would need to measure up. If there was too much unknown or if known too much spares and time and money involved in doing it up to an acceptable standard, I'd give it a miss there too.

          A warranty is only worth the good will of the seller and the paper its written on - ie no written warranty = no warranty.

          The buyer assumes lot of risk in buying used anything - lathes and other shop machines included - especially in an "as is - where is" sale.

          Comment


          • #6
            Take as many photos of it as possible and post them on this board, PM's SB forum, and a few others. I am always amazed by what some of the collectors can spot in a photo.

            As far as missing parts are concerned, SB9s are one of the most commonly collected lathes today, so there are a ton of spare parts on ebay, craigs etc. Personally, if its missing anything common, it better be cheap, as in <$300 for a 9a if youre in the northeast or midwest. These lathes when complete dont bring much more than that.
            "I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer -- born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in the steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace, and propelled by compressible flow."

            Comment


            • #7
              Thank you for the advice. I will do my homework and take a look. I think it might be something I pass on, but you never know.

              Comment


              • #8
                The "missing parts" may be the killer here. I recently got an Atlas 10" which had obviously been dropped when moving breaking the gear door, the gear banjo, the piece of the bed which the door hinge clamped to, the motor mount bracket, and it had sat for a while with a light surface rust and some parts slighly immobile BUT IT WAS COMPLETE. It is running fine now after I repaired the broken parts and scraped rust with a razor blade and lubed initially with penetrating oil and re-wired with new wiring, and I had to purchase NO parts - nil outlay in cost except for brazing and welding rods and socket screws and epoxy already in hand - just some time.

                However, had I needed to buy parts this would have been a completely different story. People want $20 to $40 for zamac gear wheels even. With just a few parts missing your lathe is a parts lathe. A couple of parts only needed and maybe the lathe is worth a little.
                "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel"

                Comment


                • #9
                  I have bought several lathes and a couple mills in not working condition, having been sitting in a corner for years, and I can add some comments here.

                  As already mentioned, while parts for a SB are pretty plentiful, there just may be that one or two that arent available, or are so expensive as to make them unattainable. If you are pretty skilled you can make them.

                  Aside from parts, plan on a complete disassembly - it may not need it but more than likely will. Oil access points and their holes will be clogged with hardened oils and cannot be cleared without taking apart - while it may run and seem fine, if oil isnt getting to its destination... There will be dirt dauber nests, chip/shavings hidden in the most unusual places. Then theres the rust, it will be hidden in just as many places unseen as seen.

                  If you arent able to devote a good deal of time - and have some experience - to deal with these possible scenarios, then its best to wait on something that is in operation and can be checked better.

                  However, as I mentioned, I have done several of these old lathes and consider doing it as my 'hobby' I just get a kick out of tearing them down to the last screw/nut and bringing them back to something like their original condition. But it can take an awful lot of time, which I have, being retired
                  If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something........

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by oldtiffie
                    But given that I pretty well always settle on new Chinese machines which are pretty cheap
                    And you get exactly what you paid for. Plan on doing as much repair work on a Chinese import as you would a 50+ year old machine.

                    Since you are a mechanic and if you have the time and inclination I say pay scrap price for the machine and as others have said plan to do a complete tear down so you can get the lubrication system up to snuf.

                    In the final analysis you are the one making the decision. So if you have more time than money I recommend saving this piece of old iron from the scrapper.

                    Just my $0.02 worth.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm no exert on SB's, but I would check the spindle bearings. All the 9", AFAIK, are plain bearing (as opposed to roller or ball bearing). That should be a major concern IMO. I would be more worried about the spindle than bed wear.

                      I've seen older SB's with spindle running in cast iron "bearings". Some like that, when badly worn would be near impossible is to easily rebuild.

                      A good way to check spindle bearings might be to pry up on the spindle with a piece of wood and note deflection with a dial indicator.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Check condition,price i.e cost of missing parts,hassle and availability of tracking and buying and having the parts delivered in good condition missing parts might not be in great condition if you buy them blind ,original cost of this lathe compared with a good condition and running example then sit down and do your homework unless your saving a substantial sum I would wait till something better comes along. MY 2 cents. Alistair
                        Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          if they are plain bearings (which i dont know), be sure to check if the oil pump is pumping oil. mine wasnt.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Thank you for the advise, I have decided to pass on the deal and keep looking. It was almost the same price as others that did power up, but were many hours drive. It sounds like if I'm going to put in that much work and money into something I would be better off starting with something a little larger too so I don't have to upgrade again in the future.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Boxford CUD


                              After a few weeks search I followed some of the advice given here and broke a good many rules too according to the paper linked in the first few posts. I did a 12hr dash to the Columbia river yesterday and gave $500 for this ($700 if you count my fuel too!)
                              It doesn't run and was not under power (3phase) but the bed ways are very good with no digs and it appears to be a much later machine than all the worn out 40's and 50's lathes I was finding locally. It came with six change gears and there is a 3/4 of an identical machine for some parts if I hurry and find anything else I need.
                              The two items that were missing from both machines were the left cabinet door and the cross slide handle is bent on this machine and missing from the other.
                              I got an extra electrical panel with the missing switches, and was wondering if any one knew what the red toe kicker switch at the base of the cabinet was?

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X