Re: parts wanted

Steve Wells

Hi Richard,

I posted to your e-mail also, for a backup contact.




I’ve uploaded a file for you to help locate parts here:


The reason for my request for more info was in regards to South Bend and how they phased in,

or introduced new models/features in the series and the fact you mentioned you have tapered gibs

on a 1937.

New castings and improvements were always started with the smaller lathes first.

The tapered gibs were introduced on the 9-inch N series in 1931-32.

As an improvement to the R series, and to replace the N series 9-inch lathes, Starting in approx.

1937, South Bend started the process of replacement of the R series saddle and compound with the new T series which would have tapered gibs in all lathes.

Still listing them in the catalog as R series, but there is a way to discern the difference by the unit codes of those parts, and probably by serial number. The T series can be seen in late 1939 listed with the T-gibs.

Most of the older R series without T-gibs have a base model of 30 or 80, and the newer models have a base of 07 or 09. This is for change gear and gear box models, it’s a little harder to tell the Junior model 22’s as they reused the numbers, but by using the unit codes you can include those in the search.

So, by the file you can see your lathe serial number falls not far from an early model 09 lathe that has a lower revision compound casting unit code number of 17 and then later 07’s and 09’s use the 18 unit code, and also a revised saddle number. But the early serial number has a saddle number of 07, and later in this serial number’s history it was returned to South Bend and they replaced the saddle with a 12, like the later ones. That tells you just about all the models of 07’s and 09’s should interchange with fitting. Also any Junior with the correct unit codes.

On the cross feed nut, I did run into a difference on the tapered gibs while making one for an R series for

A University Trades department in Canada, but was able to work out the height difference between the older R series w/o t-gibs and T series w/t-gibs 9-inch and the Heavy Ten lathe center lines, all three are different, but I believe you can cut down a Heavy Ten and fit it without a problem.

If you have any questions just give me a shout.

Hope this helps.


Steve Wells 


From: Richard Pender <penderrgp_uk@...>
Sent: Saturday, September 25, 2021 10:50 AM
To: wswells@...
Subject: South Bend model "R" bench lathe


Hello Steve,

                 Thanks for your interest; unfortunately I am not asble to send any pictures, but if you look at the web site, on Tony Griffith's South Bend file the illustration of a model "R" is identical to my machine.

Years ago when I first bought the machine, at that time, the good will of the original South bend company had passed to the rival US firm LeBlond and they advised me that the serial number72900 dated the machine to 1937.  I understand rom Tony Griffith's machine tool archive that the model "R" was very much a stop gap to morphing into the "Heavy Ten" an consiquently was made for a very short time. As also mentioned on Tony's write-up, the UK importer re-branded the machine as a "Unitol" 

My wife likes to tell me I should have bought a Myford!! (A much easier option for obtaining parts and accessories in the UK.)


Kind regards





From: <> On Behalf Of Richard Pender via
Sent: Friday, September 24, 2021 4:02 PM
Subject: [SouthBendLathe] parts wanted


I am UK based and own a 1937 South Bend "modelR" bench lathe (none operational) and am seeking a cross slide, cross slide nut, tapered gibb & screw, associated swarf guard and drive belt tensioning toggle linkage.  I understand that the 9" swing model R is comparitivley rare, but the more common "Heavy Ten" lathe may have components the same as my machine.  It is a long sad story as to how I came to loose these vital parts owing to the death  of the engineer who was to supply modifications to them.  As I have spent a considerable sum both in time and money so far in the refurbishment of this machine
(including having the 84 year old bed ground true), I am understandably very reluctant to part from what currently ammounts to an expensive collection of scrap iron!
Is there anyone who may be able to advise me what to do? (The current owners of the South Bend brand name were no help at all- despite the historicaly based bragging on their web site!
Kind regards
Richard Pender

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