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Old 04-02-2017, 07:59 AM   #11
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I was helping an old friend of mine clear his shed - he (preciently enough) wasn't expecting to be needing it much longer. On his South Bend 9" lathe, the plain headstock bearings were held in sprung cast iron (!) caps which were only split on one side, with a bolt through the split. I was surprised how easy it was to take the play out of it, and then go too far and render it tight. I would suggest slackening yours off until you can rattle the spindle up and down, and then do it up until this *just* stops.

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Old 04-03-2017, 10:05 PM   #12
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Was able to apply power to the spindle and seems ok. The real test will come when cutting so we will see what happens.
I still need to finish the 3 jaw chuck and make a bolt for the swivel in the compound. I did finish all of my major cleaning and painting. Am really happy so far. Here's some pics of the lathe as of now. ImageUploadedByModel Engines1491257335.441707.jpgImageUploadedByModel Engines1491257352.184624.jpgImageUploadedByModel Engines1491257369.362435.jpgImageUploadedByModel Engines1491257383.707903.jpg
Only problem is the pulley system in the rear bounces as it turns. Only weight is used to hold tension on the belt so that will be addressed. Any thoughts

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Old 04-03-2017, 10:48 PM   #13
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Only that you are doing a great job,thanks for posting
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Old 04-03-2017, 10:51 PM   #14
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I _think_ these normally have a rather long eccentric-cam lever to lock the countershaft, with a kind of threaded turnbuckle in the middle to set the tension. Maybe you've been there, but you can look it up on '' which will give you lots more info. From there I note that someone seems to have replaced the very odd (but original) setup of a v-belt driving a plain wheel on the countershaft, with a v-pulley, on yours.
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Old 04-04-2017, 12:41 PM   #15
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I'll add my kudos to the job you are doing with this. I agree that the the drive systems looks like it's been modified.

I believe that mrpete222 on YouTube has some videos on cleaning up Southbend lathes where you might see how the drive system is configured.

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Old 04-04-2017, 08:16 PM   #16
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My old SB has a tensioner for the flat belt so that you can easily change speeds. However, given the low hp of my motor I leave mine at the lowest chuck rpm possible. Your set up should work OK as long as you leave it in one setting. I think that mine runs at 600 rpm.

The nice part of the flat belt drive is that it will slip if you crash a tool into a work piece. It's a very forgiving set up.

That said, the whole machine is past its prime when it comes to parting off. I need to lock down everything for rigidity and pray when making the cut. Some days a hack saw and end facing afterwards works better.

Still, I love my 1940s SB even with its limits. Mine is not a clean as yours so you win.

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