South Bend workshop 9

The South Bend "workshop 9 inch" lathe is a great machine for the hobbyist or home shop machinist. It is small enough to easily fit in most shops, and (when in good shape and trim) is precise enough for almost anything. The 9" part referrers to the diameter of the largest part you can swing (i.e. spin) in the the lathe. These lathes came in 3 forms, a Model C, a Model B, and a Model A.

Resurrecting a South Bend Lathe (been a long time)

Like so many blogs, this one went dormant when I got busy with other things.
I am still busy but am going to try and get some new conent up here.
No promises.

Over the last few years i have taken many many pictures of the work I did on my South Bend 9" lathe and even some of the work I did WITH my lathe.

This is my favorite though!

Some notes on paint removal and clean up

I want to completely strip the South Bend Lathe down to the bare metal and then repaint it. This will mean taking out every screw and taper pin (more on those later) and then using some kind of paint remover to get down to the bare metal. I hate organic chemical strippers. They work great, but long ago I got sensitized to them by being cavalier about wearing gloves. Nowadays even a drop on my hand feels like a burning match.

South bend 9" lathe tear down part 1

I took a bunch of pictures of the basic tear down process. This Model C South Bend is not a particularly complex lathe. It has a plain bearing spindle, a simple backgear on an eccentric shaft, a flat belt cone pulley driven from a separate countershaft, and a very basic apron with little more then a handwheel driving a gear against a rack and a simple set of half nuts. I am lucky in that this headstock has later style bearings with grooves cut in them to reatin more oil (I think) and provide a slightly higher top end speed.

Found a South Bend 9" lathe!

I set up google alerts on craigslist for any mention of south bend lathes, southbend lathes, southben laths, and any other silly misspellings. After waiting several months, missing several reasonable deals, and ignoring several apparently solid gold south bend lathes in "perfect" shape, I finally found what seemed to be a good deal. I drove about two hours to get it, and had another enjoyable conversation with a fellow machine tool fanatic.