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djn 30th March 2013 05:17 PM

Bought a lathe so I can turn horns
I wanted to build a three way round horn system and I looked at buying the horns, but by the time I did that, I would buy a lathe and turn my I did.

Here are pix of the new lathe. This was a real bear to get out of the U-Haul. We destroyed a come-a-long and a floor jack in the process. It was well worth it though. I am in the middle of replacing all the bearings and will start turning next week.

This morning I took some steel wool and WD40 to the bed ways and now that 200lbs tail stock glides back and forth like it was nothing.

It came with a drive center, 4 face plates, 4 tool rests(some straight and some curved), and a carbide tip tool holder.

The real surprise is that it has the Lima 4 speed transmission, so that and the pulleys make this a 16 speed lathe.

All the tapers are #4 and look simply huge compared to my #1 tapers on the Rigid tube lathe. The spindle is 1 7/8 with 4 TPI.

The swing is 30" inboard and 87" outboard, the Center To Center is 74"

It was built in 1959 and weighs 4000lbs.

Here is a link to the data manual that line of lathes. Mine is the "D" model.

mortron 30th March 2013 05:20 PM

That is a beauty... does it only do wood or can it do both?

I bet that cost a few ducats :D

djn 30th March 2013 05:23 PM

It can also turn steel if I get the right chuck for it. But it is a wood lathe that was used in foundries to make round pieces for molds.

It cost $3,987.00 in 1959 (I have the reciept) and that is something like $25,000.00 in todays dollars. I got it from an industrial scrap place for less then half of what it cost new.

ODougbo 30th March 2013 05:30 PM

How are you going convert to 3-phase?

The lathe in great shape!

Tom Danley 30th March 2013 05:32 PM

Nice catch!!
That is a large and industrial style lathe, congrats.
Be careful too, stay behind the tool rest, large power tools and large flying wood are less forgiving than smaller ones..

simon7000 30th March 2013 08:12 PM

First test is to use a straight edge and shim gauges to be sure the ways are true. If they are within .0005" then it is still a metal cutting lathe. If not it is a fine wood lathe.

Note for others do this test in front of the seller before you buy the lathe. If all you want is woodworking, chances are very great you can knock the price down quite a bit.

The reason for checking is many salvage places pick up the lathes from the middle with a fork lift or chain hoist. Turns them into instant trash, unless you are doing woodworking.

Next issue is cleaning the ways. If they haven't been ruined the best way is to use a flat smooth stone to clean them. This will make sure you don't have any high spots. Sand paper or equivalent will give you a wiggly surface.

1audiohack 30th March 2013 08:44 PM

That's one hell of a wood lathe to be sure! And a light metals lathe at best, as the literature states. What's the distance from center to the bed?

I can't wait to see what you create on this beast.


djn 30th March 2013 10:04 PM

2 Attachment(s)
I have a 5hp rotary phase converter to power the 3 phase 3hp motor. It is a wood lathe to begin with, but "can" shave metal if need be. The center to the bed is 15.5" so that is were the 30" swing comes from.

I have a 12" Craftsman band saw and now that looks to dinky. So I just bought a 26" Crescent band saw that I will pick up Monday.

JMFahey 30th March 2013 11:15 PM

I recently sold my WW1 vintage German made lathe because all I made there was turning speaker magnet disks and center poles, plus the occasional aluminum sandcast 15" or 18" speaker basket ... and haven't used it in the last 5 years.
Plus I needed to reclaim the room for other uses.

I'm chiming in, because mine also came with a 3 phase (we use 3 x 380V) motor, and I replaced it with a "regular household" 220V monophasic.
To fit it in available space got a less powerful one, (mono is less eficient) but the only penalty paid was somewhat longer turning times (traded spindle RPM for torque) but that's no big problem for me.
I'm not competing with the Chinese anyway :p

Congratulations again on your purchase.

PS: experimented with 2 to 3 phase conversion ..... the real solution was to get a standard monophase motor.
But if you have a big heavy rotary converter ... try it.

steve71 31st March 2013 12:02 AM

I salute you!

I've thought about it, but you sir, actually DID IT!

How big of a horn can you turn on that contraption? :)

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