Author Topic: My old lathe...  (Read 4054 times)

Offline Allen Smithee

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My old lathe...
« on: July 09, 2014, 05:27:55 PM »
My old lathe was dismantled and stored away when I got married (18 years ago) and has remained in the same boxes, through two house moves, ever since. But in a few weeks time I hope to finally get the time to dig it out and set it up again. About ten years ago the garage roof started leaking, but it was not immediately obvious and by the time I discovered the leak the plastic crates containing all the small parts (pretty well everything other than the bed, tray and A-stands) had filled with water. At the time I dried it all off and sprayed it with oil, but I have no idea how corroded the parts will be when I am able to get to them - we'll just have to see.

Anyway, the point of this post is that it occurs to me that I don't actually know what this lathe is. I bought it from a small-add in the local paper and the seller thought it was a "long-bed Myford M4", but looking around at photos in the interwebs I don't think that's true. It's probably a Myford of some description (the word "Myford" cast into the headstock casting being the giveaway!), but that's not much help. I can't find any photos that look exactly like it, but the headstock casting looks quite like the one shown below. It has a similar four-bolt mounting which goes through a "pressed rather than cast) tray into (pressed, folder & welded rather than cast) A-shaped legs. It also has a similar "motor hanging on the back with a multi-segment belt to the spindle" layout, and plain bearings with drip-oilers.

But it's longer than that, no collet-lever orn the spindle and it has a gap down the middle of the bed, and it has a casing on the back of the headstock for a set of changable gears that drive the leadscrew. It also has a saddle with cross-slide and a compound top-slide, and a conventional tail-stock. When I manage to unpack it I'll post some photos, but does anyone have any suggestions as to what it might be?

TIA,

AS
Quidquid latine dictum sit altum sonatur

Offline Jo

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2014, 05:47:46 PM »
P. That photo is of a ML6 capstan  ;). We need some pictures of your lathe's parts.

Jo
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Offline steamer

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2014, 05:50:43 PM »
P. That photo is of a ML6 capstan  ;). We need some pictures of your lathe's parts.

Jo

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Offline steamer

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2014, 05:53:16 PM »
Could be ML4 or ML6....if it's the 6, it's pretty rare.

http://www.lathes.co.uk/myfordcapstan/


Dave
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Damned ijjit!

Offline Jo

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2014, 05:58:13 PM »
And I forgot to mention would you like to post an introduction about yourself in the intro section. I know you have lots of tales of model engines and what you did to them, that the members would love to hear  :naughty:.

Jo
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Arbalest

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2014, 07:00:48 PM »

Offline Allen Smithee

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2014, 11:30:37 PM »
Is it this one?

http://www.lathes.co.uk/myford%20mf74/index.html

From memory I would say those pictures are the closest I've seen yet, and I suppose the "4" Precision" could explain why the previous owner thought it was an "ML4". The basic headstock casting looks identical to my memory of mine, and lots of detail points like the hinged gear-case cover, the motor pulley system, the limited cross-slide design, the adjustable split bronze main bearing and the original crude tool clamp all strike chords (as it were). The tray with spiggots to store the change-gears and the stand's legs are definitely identical (the pressed ones - not the cast ones). I must clear my garage so that I can get it out for some photos.

When I first got it about 25 years ago I called myford and gave them the serial number, but all they said was "it was one of a small batch that were made to order for the toolroom of either Rolls Royce or Napier during WW2, but they had no more detail to offer". I did some modifications - I've removed the tool-clamp and fitted a cheap but functional chinese quick-change fixture and I vaguely remember doing some mods around the back of the gear case for some reason which escapes me.

I'm very likely to be getting an 2nd-hand super-7 in the near future, and I was considering cannibalising the top-slide assembly to bolt to an angle plate as a vertical axis for milling, but the tone of the above link suggests that might be an act of vandalism. Do people really want to restore these things?

I must get those photos!

AS
Quidquid latine dictum sit altum sonatur

Offline Allen Smithee

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Re: My old lathe...
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2014, 10:39:42 AM »
I popped into the garage before coming to work this morning and was able to get to one of the crates (the others are kinda buried!). I dug out a couple of bits that may help here (apologies for the rubbish phone-camera photos). These show the alloy gear-case cover and what from memory are covers that go over the end gear (fixed) and bully-wheel gear (hinged). The gear-case cover looks very similar to the "hinged but latchless" cover described in the piece Arbalest linked to. Were these sort of bits used on any other Myfords?

The crate also contained the fixed and travelling steadies which suggest that both the bed and the saddle are flat with a 60 degree(ish) underside chamfer.

If it IS the 4" precision lathe then it would be (based on that article) one of the MF-xx.M models (pressed steel stand, self-contained motor mount). I won't be able to confirm which one (18, 24, 30 or 26") until I can get to the main bed casting to measure it. I presume this refers to the length of the ground part of the bed in inches? If so I suspect it's a 30" or 36" one because this bed is definitely longer than 24". From memory I have 6" and 150mm chucks for this machine if that helps.

AS
Quidquid latine dictum sit altum sonatur