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  • Old South Bend 9"

    I have had an old (1939) South Bend 9" lathe for quite some time, it was well worn when I got it. The question that I have is, is it worth rebuilding or can it be rebuilt? The bed is well worn at the normal position within 12" from the chuck. The tailstock is also a little sloppy. I really like the lathe and would rather not junk it but it's pretty sloppy. Any thoughts on this would be appreciated.

    Thanks,

    jimmy

  • #2
    Jimmy,

    I know how you feel about the old girl!

    The good news is that its all very do able. I have a Model C 9" from 1937 - I've had her the best part of 40 years now, and wouldn't part with her for anything. She has now got a reground bed, a metal sprayed spindle and recut head bearings. The tailstock has been recut on the flat and vee (to correct the nose down effect from years of wear to the front end), meanwhile the lower tailstock base has been milled and gauge plate fitted to bring the whole barrel axis back up to centre line. A new tailstock barrel is awaiting the barrel body to be re-bored off the headstock (by putting the tailstock infront of the saddle and boring from the headstock whilst feeding the saddle towards the head). Still to do is recutting of the saddle vee ways, and compensating cuts off the apron to bring the leadscrew back onto centre line with the clasp nut. Then its repaint and rebuild time.

    The bad news is this rebuild has so far taken me a looooong time! It needs access to a working lathe and mill, and most importantly it needs 'Dedication' and 'Time', and it needs those two ingredients to occur at the same time!!!! No good having time if dedication is elsewhere!! and nothing is worth a monkey's toss without time!

    To help you motivate yourself (it has worked for me) find a picture of a really nice 9" SB that's been rebuilt. Have it as your computor wallpaper picture.

    There is also a good overhaul article, downloadable off the net, which is well worth reading if you fancy scraping the bed and doing the rebuild that way! I can't find it at the moment but can email you the article (from a 1975 copy of Model Engineer) if you wish.

    Good luck

    RR

    Comment


    • #3
      That is a lathe worth saving. I have a 1937 SB9 model C as well and have enjoyed using it for some 24 years. Mine required no serious work as it was used very lightly in it's previous life. It is a smooth running machine and accurate when properly set up. If you do decide to overhaul it I suggest you do what I did for mine. I built a super rigid table. The top of the table is 2x4s on 8 inch centers with 1" high density particle board glued and screwed to top and bottom mounted to a U shaped base made the same way but with only an outside cover of particleboard. The front is open with a tool drawer on glides and a shelf below. The top is covered with a sheet of thin steel. The big difference is that I mounted the lathe itself on a piece of 10" by 4 foot by 1/4" thick channel iron that is bolted to the table top. This makes shimming the feet easy and produces an absolutely rigid setup that doesn't change.
      Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks guys. I have access to another lathe & I have a nice mill, the big problem is time!!! My 9" is a model A and I really love it, I use it quite a bit, I just want to get it back into good condition.

        Comment


        • #5
          Jimmy,

          I've sent you the rebuild article, as mentioned. If you plan out the work that's needed to rebuild your machine then it can be done surprisingly quickly. I've rebuilt a number of machines and my preffered routine is to:-

          1. Note all the problem areas, such as, headstock bearings, bedways, tailstock barrel, tailstock baseplate, etc,.

          2. Remember that unless you are real lucky you are going to need outside assistance. Find a machine shop with capability to tackle a bedway re-machine. Either go for a slideway grinder, but consider a rail milled bed as well. Metal spraying for the spindle and a regrind and headstock boring may be needed. Get some idea of prices - cash donantions to the donut fund work well.

          3. Strip it down to the constituent parts. Photograph the dis-assembly so you have a record of where it all goes. Refit screws into their threads so you know what goes where also helps alot. Write notes, make sketches, for really awkward bits.

          4. Clean the components in a 'wash benzine' or similar. This is a good move for parts heading out to a machine shop for outsourced work. Nobody likes working on crudy castings!

          5. If you've got a surface plate, and measuring equipment, check the smaller stuff you can do yourself. Rollers or short lengths of drill rod are good for measuring across dovetails (both male and female) to ascertain the amount of wear. A gauge block and feelers at a minimum will allow this.

          6. Bed all parts in after milling, with Prussian Blue and scraping. No need to get too carried away with this, just remove the high spots!

          7. Repaint, and rebuild - use new fasteners, and/or clean up existing fasteners where necessary (i.e. fillister head screws are virtually impossible to find these days in the UK!). Don't forget to clean paint off machined surfaces with one of those dinky single sided razor blade scrapers!

          RR

          Comment


          • #6
            Be very carefull with the cast parts and how you strip or clean them. In the time period when they were made it was a common practice to fill voids in castings with a mixture of lead and putty or even putty and sawdust. Depending what you use to clean/strip you may end up softening or even dissolving away this sort of filler. If that happens just use some body filler to fix.
            Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here

            Comment


            • #7
              Could you e-mail me the rebuild aritcle Ragarsed Raglan or Jimmy? I am in the process of rebuilding my lathe.

              Thanks
              Traceman

              [QUOTE]Originally posted by Ragarsed Raglan:
              [b]Jimmy,

              I've sent you the rebuild article, as mentioned. If you plan out the work that's needed to rebuild your machine then it can be done surprisingly quickly. I've rebuilt a number of machines and my preffered routine is to:-



              [This message has been edited by Traceman (edited 11-01-2003).]

              Comment


              • #8
                Look here under olies shop under members shops look at the lathe this guy restored after he found it in a scrapheap dumpster beeeeeeautifuuuul. Alistair

                http://www.practicalmachinist.com/ub...ML/000006.html
                Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

                Comment


                • #9
                  Traceman,

                  I'll look out the article and post to you.

                  RR

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You know, everbody seems to know when their lathe was built except me, and I have always wanted to ask, soooo, here goes.
                    South Bend 9"
                    Catalog No. CL615Y
                    Bed 3
                    Ser. 32081NCR9
                    Anybody know? anybody?
                    Jim
                    Jim

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks


                      <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Ragarsed Raglan:
                      Traceman,

                      I'll look out the article and post to you.

                      RR
                      </font>

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Shaque- If you E-mail Ted Naegele at Leblond, they have the records for old South Bend tools. [email protected]
                        They also have South Bend's inventory of replacement parts

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Shaque
                          There's a program at the yahoo south bend group for estimating lathe year by serial no.

                          If I got it right, your lathe is a '53.

                          If you do as Sprocket says, they'll be able to tell you exactly when your lathe was shipped, and to whom.

                          BTW my 9C is a '49

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            As an aside, have any of you guys seen the history of SBL's labor problems? They had a union, then hucked it, then employees bought the company. They appointed their own set of directors, didn't like the decisions being made, then UNIONIZED (against themselves) again! Or something squirrely like that; I don't remember the particulars but I'll bet one of youz guyz can edumacate us! It was very bizarre, they teach business classes that examine this case in detail. I stumbled on it once when I was trying to score a translation gear for my old 16/24.
                            I'm here hoping to advancify my smartitude.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Herb;
                              You got it right on buddy, my lathe was built in march 12, 1953 and sold to Chapat engineering in the Toronto area.
                              Thanx
                              Jim
                              Jim

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