Re: Getting my SB 9C working

RJ White

On Dec 16, 2020, at 6:22 PM, mike allen <animal@...> wrote:

        Mark , It's really not a big deal to pull the spindle . You should make sure that you have new felts for a machine that sat that long . You can get the felts in a set for the whole lathe & then some & a book that walks you

        through the process . You will be glad you , alot cheaper than buying a new spindle & headstock


On 12/16/2020 5:58 PM, Mark Moulding wrote:
My father bought this South Bend 9C, possibly new or with some demo deal (as he had almost no money at the time), around 1940.  I purchased the serial card from Grizzly, and it all matches up except, oddly, the length of the bed (the card says 3', but it's actually 3-1/2'); since the serial number is on the bed, it's hard to understand that mismatch.

Regardless, he used it for a while, then while I was growing up we'd make a few projects with me "helping" (I was around 10 to 15 at the time).  He died, far too young at 55, in 1980, and the lathe had a tarp thrown over it.  There it sat at my mother's house until she died about a year ago (at 96).  I cleaned out her house, and put it in a storage unit for the next year.  The unit was fairly near the waterfront in the San Francisco bay area, but when I stored it I drenched everything with BoeShield.  Now I've moved it up to my new (heated, dehumidified) shop in Oregon, and one of my first retirement projects is to get it working again.

Amazingly, there is essentially no rust anywhere.  The exposed iron and steel has darkened a bit, but appears to be in good shape.  Because I know its entire history, I'm certain that it wasn't mechanically mistreated, so it shouldn't be too difficult to bring back to life.  I've mounted the lathe and motor on a new table, and replaced the leather drive belt with a new one - the V-belt, although aged, still appears to be usable.  But there seems to be a problem...

The main spindle won't turn.  If I disengage the back gears and pull the locking pin, the cone pulley spins fairly freely, but I've been unable to get the spindle to move.  I also disengaged the change gear reversing gears, to no effect - it's the spindle itself that's really locked up solidly.  I feel as though it must just be dried lubricant on the bearings, because it was working when stored, but if so it's a lot more locked-up than I would have expected.  I tried mounting a 10-inch faceplate, and even with that I couldn't apply enough torque to break it free (I may be retired, but I'm not too feeble yet...).  I stopped short of putting a pipe wrench on it, but just barely...

Any other ideas about what I should try, before breaking down and disassembling the whole thing (which I've been trying to avoid)?  And once I get it moving, any recommendations for chemicals and methods to clean off the 50 years of crud?  I already have a rebuild kit (felts and such-like) and a kit of oils, but I'd like to get it cleaned up first.

(I'm still moving into the shop - please forgive all the boxes in the background...)


Mark Moulding
South Bend 9" Model C, Walker Turner drill press, Rong Fu table-top mill, "Mini" lathe, a whole bunch of Shopsmith gear

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