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BC Ames Triplex Lathe Anyone ever use one

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  • #16
    I can tell you it's from Waltham, MA. That's about ~15 miles away from me. Glad I could help

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Tundra Twin Track View Post
      I think they are pretty rare,I was shocked when I seen one on Vintage Machinery it is missing the cross slide $500 for it.The one in pic was restored by a fellow in Australia which came off a ship with the purchase price of $2200 in 1938 holy $hit that was a lot of money then.I thought the curved arm with deg. Marked on it was real ingenious and goes up to vertical postion for drilling or milling.


      It cooled off overnight here -42c this morning 20 km wind,weather net says feels like -55c
      Hi All - Just want to chime in here. The Triplex in the picture is my restoration. The machine is still here in North Carolina. If you are interested in how it changes over, search "Ames Triplex" on You Tube, I had posted a video of the machine and how all the adjustments are made.
      There are not many of these around. I have been contacted by about seven people that have one of these machines - Including the fellow in Australia. He purchased a Triplex and was putting together a database of all the info he could find. I know he forwarded this to the "Lathes UK" site where they posted pictures.
      When doing the restoration the only person I could find that had any experience with the Ames Triplex was ToolznThings. He was kind enough to send me his restore pictures and let me bother him with a ton of questions. Mine was in bad shape. I will try and post a " before" pic.
      I only machined with it a little bit before selling to a friend. It worked well . I am limited on space. Since I have both a lathe and mill it was the one to go. If I had the space I would have to kept it. It is a cool machine.

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      • #18
        Thanks Guys for all the replys.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by darryl View Post
          Once saw a German version of something similar- looked very stout even though of a small size. Sure would be handy if you're angling holes into parts or milling angles for dovetails for example. Or facing angles on billet- the making of V-8 model engine blocks for example.
          iirc there is a Eurpean tool grinder, Swiss or German, that this machine reminds me of....they are the arc shaped bit. Can't remember the name
          in Toronto Ontario - where are you?

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          • #20
            Hmm. Just thinking of some alternate configurations- what if that curved overarm went further around? It might have to be larger in radius, and it might have to be twinned- but the cutter head could then go 180 degrees or more. Might be useful being able to keep the part in one spot, yet drill angled holes on both sides with perfect symmetry.

            You could in fact use two complete hoops, machined of course for accuracy. They would be spaced some fixed distance apart, and the head for the spindle would be between them, and would ride them. The structure for the bed would fasten to the bottom of the hoops, and you'd have the ability to raise or lower the table and move it in x and y like any mill table. Would it give you any capability that standard machines can't? Anything useful or desirable? Maybe, maybe not- just some OOTBox thinking-
            I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Mcgyver View Post
              iirc there is a Eurpean tool grinder, Swiss or German, that this machine reminds me of....they are the arc shaped bit. Can't remember the name
              Nora? For some good reading there's a long post over on OWWM where a guy made one: http://www.owwm.org/viewtopic.php?f=...014&hilit=nora

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              • #22
                Rata, thanks a lot for chiming in on this unique piece of gear.

                Here's a direct link to the YT VIDEO

                The video gives a lot better idea of the size and features. A highly interesting machine that would certainly do some things very well that are not all that easily done on a regular lathe or even on a mill. But at the same time very limited for size and ability. Rather specialized for sure. And likely too specialized and likely rather costly for the things it can do.
                Last edited by BCRider; 02-07-2019, 01:17 PM.
                Chilliwack BC, Canada

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Rata222 View Post
                  Hi All - Just want to chime in here. The Triplex in the picture is my restoration. The machine is still here in North Carolina. If you are interested in how it changes over, search "Ames Triplex" on You Tube, I had posted a video of the machine and how all the adjustments are made.
                  There are not many of these around. I have been contacted by about seven people that have one of these machines - Including the fellow in Australia. He purchased a Triplex and was putting together a database of all the info he could find. I know he forwarded this to the "Lathes UK" site where they posted pictures.
                  When doing the restoration the only person I could find that had any experience with the Ames Triplex was ToolznThings. He was kind enough to send me his restore pictures and let me bother him with a ton of questions. Mine was in bad shape. I will try and post a " before" pic.
                  I only machined with it a little bit before selling to a friend. It worked well . I am limited on space. Since I have both a lathe and mill it was the one to go. If I had the space I would have to kept it. It is a cool machine.
                  I also would like to verify the above post. I waited before saying anything about the original post and picture. I was helped with my Triplex years ago by an elderly gentleman in N.Y. that was very well informed about the machine and was my source of help for my repairs. Considerable damage and modifications were done to the one I had. The pictured Triplex was more original than mine. I'm glad the real source of the Triplex and repairs went to the credit of my friend.
                  Toolznthings

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                  • #24
                    Found this linked to over on PM, pretty dirty looking probably for sitting for some time, but for $500 it's likely worth the cleaning. http://www.vintagemachinery.org/clas...x?id=16691&p=2

                    The Golmatic strikes me as being functionally very similar, though you better be ready for the sticker shock. https://www.emcomachinetools.co.uk/i...product_id=615

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                    • #25
                      Looks like the Triplex is missing the entire carriage assembly ?
                      Toolznthings

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by TOOLZNTHINGS View Post
                        Looks like the Triplex is missing the entire carriage assembly ?
                        Hopefully sitting in a corner close by waiting on someone to save this fairly rare wonder.
                        Chilliwack BC, Canada

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                        • #27
                          Even with carriage missing, it would be worth having the angle drilling capability , for that price..

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Rata222 View Post
                            Hi All - Just want to chime in here. The Triplex in the picture is my restoration. The machine is still here in North Carolina. If you are interested in how it changes over, search "Ames Triplex" on You Tube, I had posted a video of the machine and how all the adjustments are made.
                            There are not many of these around. I have been contacted by about seven people that have one of these machines - Including the fellow in Australia. He purchased a Triplex and was putting together a database of all the info he could find. I know he forwarded this to the "Lathes UK" site where they posted pictures.
                            When doing the restoration the only person I could find that had any experience with the Ames Triplex was ToolznThings. He was kind enough to send me his restore pictures and let me bother him with a ton of questions. Mine was in bad shape. I will try and post a " before" pic.
                            I only machined with it a little bit before selling to a friend. It worked well . I am limited on space. Since I have both a lathe and mill it was the one to go. If I had the space I would have to kept it. It is a cool machine.
                            Rata your restoration is top shelf,well done I watched the Youtube on it as well very good job Thanks!

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                            • #29
                              Here's one in VA for sale, $500: http://www.vintagemachinery.org/clas....aspx?id=16691

                              Dan
                              Salem, Oregon

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                              • #30
                                I ended up buying the one in Virginia from the Vintage Machinery ad. The mill table wasn't stashed away anywhere, so I'll be making one. If anyone still has a Triplex in their possession I could use some measurements in order to make casting molds. I tried talking my self out of going to look at it, but eventually the important part of my brain won out and off I went. Hopefully it will get functionally restored and earn it's keep or maybe just sit there and look pretty. Either way I'm OK with it.


                                Here's a pic after a bit of dirt removal. Also, it was interesting to see that in the patent application there were two other versions.


                                capture screen

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