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[Antique] Least favorite part of rebuild/restoration

jhuston

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Oct 15, 2016
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#31
A metal working machine can run into a lot of neglect and abuse in a decade or six ( I once had a South Bend 9" that still had the original frosting everywhere, but the spindle and headstock were destroyed by lack of lubrication and had to be replaced as a whole. How much does spindle oil cost? I dunno, but an absence of it was about 160.00 out of my pocket). I have a lapping machine that is been revers engineered because a former owner stripped off the compound and used it as a Tormak on steroids. People are barbarians, which is why I was so happy to see my current lathe had been used by generations of men who gave a tinkers you-know-what about doing things right. A little oil and some cleaning do wonders for preserving a machine.
-James Huston
 

4gsr

HM Chief Foreman
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#32
I have my dad's 9" SBL, born in 1949. It's pretty much been my lathe all my life from when I started to learn how to use it at 10 years old. Fifty years later and one recondition I did to the lathe about 15 years ago, it's still dead accuract! Did a test bar check for alignment of the headstock, it's within a thousandth side to side and up and down, in about 6". Not too shabby for all of the iron that I've cut on it and used it to rebuild several machines, too.

It does make a difference taking care of your machines and keeping them wiped down and oiled.
 

C-Bag

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#33
In the auto shop the machines that suffered the most were the ones where there were several users. Those were usually trashed like the brake lathe and the alignment rack. I can only imagine as I never worked in a machine shop. But my brother did and he basically called me a tweeker for wanting to take the slack out of my X and Y halfnuts on my mill /drill because they had about 50 thou play. He said most machines he used had 100 thou! A whole turn before you start actually adjusting is a little hard to keep track of IMHO. In looking at the Connoly book .005 to .010 is good and that's how I adjusted mine after cleaning the lead screws and halfnuts.

I've found out lubrication is a pretty deep subject and like in any shop there are as many opions as there is guys giving them. I do have spindle oil and way oil and one of my latest discoveries is "Red and Tacky" grease for the bull gear on the shaper. They mention tacky grease in the manual but no more than that. When I asked about a tacky grease they sold me this and it is all the state uses for grease. Don't know if that's a great endorsement but it sure has made a difference in the noise and smoothness of the cut. I also got the tip from the guy who sold me his biax and was a machine rebuilder too and he swore by "Fluid Film" . So far it's proven to be my go to for everything from smearing on a surface to stop rust( we are close to the ocean) to lubing the drive screw on my auto garage door opener. Great stuff.
 

benmychree

John York
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Jun 7, 2013
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#34
A metal working machine can run into a lot of neglect and abuse in a decade or six ( I once had a South Bend 9" that still had the original frosting everywhere, but the spindle and headstock were destroyed by lack of lubrication and had to be replaced as a whole. How much does spindle oil cost? I dunno, but an absence of it was about 160.00 out of my pocket). I have a lapping machine that is been revers engineered because a former owner stripped off the compound and used it as a Tormak on steroids. People are barbarians, which is why I was so happy to see my current lathe had been used by generations of men who gave a tinkers you-know-what about doing things right. A little oil and some cleaning do wonders for preserving a machine.
-James Huston
It is my take on the situation that in terms of spindle and bearings, that SB spindles in the earlier days were quite soft, the spindle would be quite worn and the bearings much less. I rebuilt one such machine from the late 1920s that was really loose in the bearings, I had the spindle hard chromed and ground and made a new front bearing; should last another 100 yrs!
 
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