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Guest Message by DevFuse
 

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My *new* (old) shop toy.


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30 replies to this topic

#1 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 02:34 AM

As many of you probably don't know, I'm a bit of an enthusiast of old stuff. Especially tools that are still functional. I collect books from the 1920's through the 1960's detailing shop techniques and projects - Popular Science printed a lot of compendiums over the years.

Anyway - one thing that is almost always seen in a "man's" workshop of those time periods is a lathe. Almost every other page is a picture of a man smoking his pipe while something is turning on his lathe.

I've always wanted one, but the expenditure for a new one these days is considerable - especially for something that's not an Asian import - which I despise for numerous reasons. Obviously a used machine was the most economical solution - preferably something made in the US, decent sized but not a behemoth that would take up half the garage and require a crane to move. Funny thing - I was looking for the most desireble class of machine on the used market :rolleyes:

I did quite a bit of research on what brand and size machine would be the best for my needs. I ended up settling on a Logan. They are fairly plentiful, US made from 1941 to 1985 or so. And the company is still around and actively supporting them with parts, documentation, and advice. The grandson of the founder actively runs a yahoo group devoted to them in fact. I had to drive 225 miles each way to get this 1950 model #200 (10" swing, 24" between center's). The price was right and it turned out the included accesories were worth nearly as much as I paid for just the machine. According to company records it was built on 10/26/1950 and was sold to the Bell Machine Co. The man who's son I bought it from apparently aquired it in the 60's and was an alfafa farmer as well as restoring vintage Ford's in his later years - he had a Model T coupe, Model T truck, and a Model A - all 100% restored to showroom (neat to check those out while I was loading my catch). Complete with power cross-feed, quick change gear box, stand/chip tray, newer Bison (polish) chuck, and a ton of accesories - this was a top-end model in it's class in 1950. With almost 100% cast iron and steel construction it weighs in at 525 pounds. Quite a bit of dissasembly was required to move it.

I've had to dissasemble and clean every bit of the machine. There are some parts that need to be rebushed, etc but the lathe can make it's own parts! And the few I can't make I can either buy new from Logan or have machined for me. My plan is to put a small VFD and a 1 HP 3 phase motor on it for variable speed control. But even the way it is it's already useful. Took about 5 minutes to turn down a pulley spacer for a Maxima alt to convert it to an EA V-belt pulley. :grin:

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GD

Edited by GeneralDisorder, 22 December 2009 - 02:48 AM.


#2 eulogious

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 04:52 AM

:slobber: NICE!! Man, you keep getting all these cool tools. I am sooooo jealous. One of these days I will be able to start my collection of shop tools, but I need a shop first :rolleyes: Can't put the cart before the horse. Good for you man! I now know where to come for my next alternator ;)

#3 lostinthe202

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 07:20 AM

Awesome score GD, Bison makes good chucks, that chuck alone could be worth 1/2 what you paid for the enter package.

Will-

#4 heartless

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 07:30 AM

dammit GD - you have got to stop it - I am gonna ruin my keyboard with all the :slobber: :slobber: :slobber:!!!

:lol:

looks like a keeper for sure!

#5 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 11:03 AM

Awesome score GD, Bison makes good chucks, that chuck alone could be worth 1/2 what you paid for the enter package.


Yeah - it lists for like $450 on Logan's web site. I didn't know what brand it was till I realized I had the original box for it and identified it by the logo on the box. Then it all made sense with the "Poland" marking on the chuck, model number, etc. It came with the manual and the factory accuracy certification card.

GD

#6 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 11:06 AM

One of these days I will be able to start my collection of shop tools, but I need a shop first :rolleyes:


You'll get there - just a couple years ago I was still working out of a driveway. It all happens so fast.....

I now know where to come for my next alternator ;)


Yep - I have one built right now. Just have to test it out.

GD

#7 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 11:08 AM

dammit GD - you have got to stop it - I am gonna ruin my keyboard with all the :slobber: :slobber: :slobber:!!!!


Thanks!

Can't decide if my next purchase should be a mill or a car lift :confused:

:grin:

GD

#8 lostinthe202

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 11:14 AM

Thanks!

Can't decide if my next purchase should be a mill or a car lift :confused:

:grin:

GD


No brainer, Milling machine:banana::banana: Takes up a lot less room and infinitely more useful

#9 Twitch de la Brat

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 11:52 AM

Wow GD.
That is an amazing find!
It looks to be in incredible shape for having been around longer than you! :lol:

I always have loved old tools, esp power tools.
We stored a 1940's craftsman table saw for a gentleman (now passed :()
and I was so sad when I saw it go (my back wasn't :rolleyes: ).
But it was incredibly strong and still worked!

Twitch

PS: I say go for the car lift, its more labor saving.
Who wants to spend 20 minutes jacking and blocking every car you
work on?
I know I'm sick of it...

#10 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 22 December 2009 - 01:10 PM

Oh yes - just about every tool made through the 1950's was very well built. Craftsman tools were no different as they were made by US manufacturer's - though their lathes of the period were mostly made by Atlas and had gear trains made from ZAMAC - a soft die-cast material. I steered clear of those for that reason as well as the owner's of the Atlas stuff (Clausing) aren't real interested in supporting them since they import new Asian models and would rather sell you one of those.

Sad that most of that stuff has been thrown away just needing a few easily produced parts like bushings and bearings. The power of marketing and sales I suppose.

GD

#11 GLCraig

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Posted 23 December 2009 - 12:56 AM

That's almost the same Logan lathe my dad had when I was growing up. Were you lucky enough to get the draw bar and collets for it? Also did it come with a couple of extra gears for the gearbox? The lathe my dad had, used to two different sets of gears to drive the quick change gearbox. One set was for regular machining and the other set was for threading.

#12 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 23 December 2009 - 01:13 AM

Yes - it came with the drawbar and full collet set to 1/2" in 32nd's. The quick change gear box has two possible change gears - a 48 tooth for most all threading applications and a 24 tooth for REALLY coarse threads - 8 TPI and less. The extra gear is always handy as it is bolted to the outside of the gear that is currently in use via it's extra long axle shaft.

I also got three chucks for it, and a 7.5" faceplate along with a ton of cutting tools and tool stock plus a make-shift milling attachement that I can probably do something with. Several Starrett mic.'s, some dial indicators, a mag base, and just a whole bunch of other stuff that came in a three drawer craftsman portable.

I got it all for $750. Which is a monster steal of a deal. Frankly I robbed the man blind. I could sell some of the accesories, make back the whole amount and keep the lathe. Of course I would have to re-buy that stuff so that would be pointless :rolleyes:.

GD

#13 coldfusion21

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Posted 28 December 2009 - 10:29 PM

another neat tool! Old lathes are the only way to go. Plenty of high quality machines just needing some love.

now you just need a milling machine to complete the collection!

#14 Nug

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 07:45 PM

I inherited an Atlas 10". I've already had to replace some of the die cast parts. Other parts, like the feed screw end support, which was broken, were manufactured on the same broken machine. Now, she's supporting a bronze-bushed feed screw support, and a quick-change tool holder. Good stuff. I've also inherited a massive Pratt and Whitney metal lathe that I've somehow got to move from MA to VA, and I'm half-assedly looking for a Bridgeport mill.

#15 lostinthe202

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 08:38 PM

What kind of P&W lathe is it? Some of those are real beasts that have a top speed of under 500 rpm and can take some massive cuts.

#16 Nug

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 09:15 PM

She doesn't have much of a swing, maybe 12 inches, but the thing is enormously burly. Probably weighs 3000 pounds.

#17 lostinthe202

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 10:24 PM

That weight is great for a lathe, really makes for a stable machine, but yeah, kind of a B** to move.

We've got this Monarch EE lathe at work that is only about 3.5 feet tall and about 60 inches long and it weighs in at a little under 3500lbs!! It's a toolroom lathe, really highend machinery from it's day (1961). They still make the model and it sells for just under 75K. What is the distance between center's do you know? Could be a really precise machine.

Will-

#18 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 12:27 AM

Yeah - I have seen some pictures of the P&W stuff - some of them were really amazing machines. I saw a picture of one on the internet with a gear reduction unit on it that could turn some rediculously low speed like 5 RPM. It was said that it could produce unbroken ribbons of material .001" in thickness, 2" wide and as long as you wanted. :slobber:

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#19 Nug

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 08:30 AM

That weight is great for a lathe, really makes for a stable machine, but yeah, kind of a B** to move.

We've got this Monarch EE lathe at work that is only about 3.5 feet tall and about 60 inches long and it weighs in at a little under 3500lbs!! It's a toolroom lathe, really highend machinery from it's day (1961). They still make the model and it sells for just under 75K. What is the distance between center's do you know? Could be a really precise machine.

Will-


Around 3.5-4 feet. It was mostly used for making wooden lamps when grandpa had it, but he did turn some metal, smaller stuff. Hopefully the v's are in good shape, I know there's a little play in the cross slide (whatever it's called) which hopefully can be adjusted out. I have to do some major reorganization to fit it in my shop. :lol:

#20 Nug

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 08:36 AM

It looks similar to this one, except it has the stepped pulleys in the headstock, with a 4 speed transmission permanently belted to the large pulley, with a 220v electric motor on top of that. It's like 6 ft. tall, lol.

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#21 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 10:26 AM

Around 3.5-4 feet. It was mostly used for making wooden lamps when grandpa had it


Inspect carefully - sawdust and chips are not kind to metal-working equipment - it absorbs lubrication (which was hopefully being used regularly :)).

My Logan was used by an old alfalfa farmer for most of it's life - he restored Model A's and Model T's but I think he got a little funny in the head in his old age because not everything was put together right on my machine - I had to dissasemble the QCG and flip some things around - and he didn't oil some bits that he should have. It wasn't terribly abused, but it wasn't owned by a real machinist either :rolleyes:

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#22 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 10:31 AM

I inherited an Atlas 10". I've already had to replace some of the die cast parts.


In case you aren't aware, the die-case material on the Atlas's is called ZAMAC. That's the primary reason I stayed away from them when I went searching for a lathe. Although apparently you can still get some of the parts and those machines are very common being sold by Sears. I just didn't feel good about that ZAMAC stuff nor Clausing's support of those old machines - they sold out and are importing Chinese machines.

GD

#23 lostinthe202

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 11:09 AM

It looks similar to this one, except it has the stepped pulleys in the headstock, with a 4 speed transmission permanently belted to the large pulley, with a 220v electric motor on top of that. It's like 6 ft. tall, lol.


Nice, that's some serious iron there. Pulley driven lathes have the one advantage of making it that much easier to put something household friendly in the way of a motor to drive it.

If the ol' man was turning wood it means he was probably spinning it pretty fast. Hopefully he kept up the lube like GD mentioned

I wouldn't worry too much about the play (called backlash in machine lingo), every machine is going to have some. Yes it can be dealt with, but you'll never get rid of it entirely.

These old machines were built very well and likely has many more years of use. But yes, if you're going to see wear on the ways, it'll probably but in the first several inches before the chuck as that's where most of the action happens.

Those Atlas lathes have a pretty avid following. If it's got a quick-change gear box and any kind of tooling, you could sell it for a decent amount.

Good luck with it!

Will-

#24 Nug

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 08:10 PM

Grandpa pretty religiously oiled the thing, and kept it pretty clean. He also worked at a slow but steady pace. The only time I ever saw it turn fast was when he was demonstrating the higher gears. He'd essentially chuck a piece of cured firewood in there and make something out of it. Not something you'd want flying off of there at 1200rpm.

#25 Nug

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 11:24 PM

After borrowing a diesel pickup and a car hauler trailer, and spending $200 in fuel, that big rump roast Pratt and Whitney is taking up a large chunk of real estate in my garage. It came with a three jaw and a four jaw chuck, faceplates, feed dogs, a steady rest, cutting bits, a cabinet, a thousand drill bits, wrenches, change gears (she ain't no quick change), and a big fat dose of sentimentality. The only thing it lacks is the taper attachment, which it does have provision for. I wonder how hard it would be to make one.


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Edited by Nug, 18 November 2010 - 09:26 AM.





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