Newbe advice on a lathe…

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  • #48449
    tmac1956
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    I want to purchase a lathe and I am looking at a 8mm Peerless in mint condition (excellent finish and oiled), and includes a Borel stand, six gravers, and nine collets (3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, & 16) It bas no motor or foot pedal. The asking price is $479.00. I this a good brand? What about the price?

    Thanks!

    Tom McCallister

    #52576
    david pierce
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    Tmac,
    Generally Peerless makes a great lathe. Before purchasing a lathe, decide what you want to use it for. The WW style lathe can do both clock and watch work. Before paying this much for the lathe I would certainly put an accurate dial indicator into the spindle hole and check the runout and end play. There should not be more than .0001 inches of runout and almost no end play. To do this it will require a quality Swiss style indicator that reads in tenths. These indicators cost a couple of hundred dollars so you may want to take the lathe to a machine shop and have a machinist check it for you. The main drawback to a Peerless lathe is it will not accept standard Starret Collets. This could prove to be a major problem if you need additional collets and chucks in the future. If you are planing to work on clocks only, you will probably want something with a little more power such as a Taig. The Taig can take a decent cut without the belt slipping or the motor stalling out but it would not be suitable for watch parts because of its larger size and the way it is set up. If you are planning to work on watches only the Sincere Lathe from China will give you the most machine for the money. It also offers most of the accessories you will need to make watch parts.
    david

    #52577
    tmac1956
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    david:
    Great information. I’ll check out the China model. Who is their dealer here in the US?

    Thanks!

    tmac

    #52578
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
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    Tmac,
    The lathe I have was purchased from Sincere off of Ebay. Sincere offers the accessories as well. I believe I bought all of the accessories that were offered except the collets. The motor they have for the lathe is better than any watchcraft or any other motor I tried so far. It is a good industrial quality motor. Go to Ebay and take a look. Sincere may also have a web page outside of Ebay.
    david

    #52579
    vanhooglesnort
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    @david pierce wrote:

    The main drawback to a Peerless lathe is it will not accept standard Starret Collets. This could prove to be a major problem if you need additional collets and chucks in the future.

    I have a Peerless lathe and I use several different brands of WW collets. The Peerless are about .03″ longer but the other dimensions seem the same and they all seem to fit fine. Am I missing something?

    #52580
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
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    Van,
    I have three Peerless lathes and the spindle hole on all three is too small and will not take the Starret collets. The Peerless collets fit perfectly but the Starret collets will not go in. The fit is close but they still will not go. If I was in a pinch I could drive out the collet locking pin and machine the hole out a little more with a reamer but I do not know if a person would want to do this if this was the first lathe they ever owned and did not have an engine lathe with collets large enough to hold the spindle during the machining operation. This could also be done with hand reaming by securing the spindle in a vice but the person doing the operation runs the risk of damaging the lathe components.
    david

    #52581
    vanhooglesnort
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    • Topics Started: 10
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    Weird. Thanks for the explanation, but now I have more questions than answers. My experience is completely different from yours. I am now wondering if I have a Frankenlathe or if someone has already carried out the procedure you described before I came to own it. I don’t suppose it matters now, but I do know some things to look for on my next purchase.

    #52582
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
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    Van,
    I have been collecting these machines since 1971 and now have about 50 lathes. The Peerless lathes are definately among the best and, at least to me, are the best looking machines ever made. When I put a Peerless collet into a Peerless spindle it is the most perfect and precise fit I ever saw on a watchmaker lathe. As far as a piece of equipment goes my thoery is, if it does exactly what you need it to do then it is exactly what you need. The watchmaker lathe I use the most is a Boley with a Levin cross slide that I initially purchased as a rusted out piece of junk. It does not have the gorgeous look that the Peerless has but it turns accurately (after I restored and rebuilt it) and it accepts all of the collets and other accessories I have. There is a vintage collector mentality out there that places importance on brand name, does it have the original box. do all of the serial numbers match, did a previous owner modify it or refinish it etc.. The reality is that this is a tool and it will either do the job you want it to do or it will not. If your lathe does what you want it to do and does it well, then you have nothing else to worry about. If most people are not going to check out the spindle for runout and collet fit before buying a machine, then it won’t matter if the spindle bore is the original factory diameter or not; if and when you should sell it.
    david

    #52583
    clockman1509
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    • Topics Started: 14
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    Hi dave , I have just bought bobs course, so I am a total newbe. I managed to buy a boley 1 ww lathe from an old watch maker. It has been sitting around in his garage for a considerable amount of time. I got it home and started to clean it, it came with a three jaw chuck fitted to the headstock.I managed to remove the chuck but the arbour is stuck in the headstock and try as a may I cannot get it out. If you could give me some advise I would be grateful, I paid £100 for it with a motor. I would hate to have to scrap it and start all over. I have never used a lathe so totally lost.
    I hope you can help
    Alan

    #52584
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
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    Alan,
    I hate it when that happens. The cause for the stuck arbor could be due to the arbor rusting a bit inside the spindle. First, take the lathe apart. On the back of the spindle is the knurled adjusting nut. Unscrew the nut and remove it. Next slide off the keyed washer on the back. After that unscrew the locking screw on the stepped pulley and remove the screw. Rock the pulley back and forth to make sure is is free of the spindle. Now take a piece of soft wood and tap the spindle out of the headstock (out the front), with the piece of wood. Do not use a metal hammer for this. Next take a block of hard wood and drill a hole in it to clear the stuck arbor but trap the nose of the spindle. Place the nose of the spindle over the hole so the spindle is positioned vertically and pour some penetrating oil (diesel fuel) into the hole. Allow the oil some time to work its way in. Then take a BRASS rod and hammer the arbor out of the spindle. Do not do this while the spindle is still in the headstock. You could damage the cone bearings.
    After the arbor is removed try and polish the rust off of the internal spindle hole with some scotch brite and hydraulic oil. Take some cotton balls and q-tips and clean out the cone bearings and spindle. Do not use scotch brite on the bearing surfaces. Reassemble the spindle assembly and note the flat spot on the spindle where the pulley locking screw contacts the spindle. Line the pulley hole over the flat spot and replace the pulley locking screw. Next, replace the keyed washer and the knurled adjusting nut on the back. Screw in the adjusting nut until it is finger tight. Next, take the piece of wood and tap the nose of the spindle. Tighten and tap until the spindle locks. Now slowly back off the adjusting nut until the spindle turns freely (about 1/8 of a turn). Make sure that there is plenty of hydraulic on the bearing contact points. There are recomendations for other types of oil but I have found hydraulic oil to be the best so far. In the old days when all machine tools used friction bearings, the recommended oil was called 100 second oil, which was about the same as hydraulic oil.
    david

    #52585
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
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    Alan,
    I almost forgot. Before reassembling the lathe replace the “heat together belt” with an o-ring of similar diameter and thickness. The o-ring will transfer more power from the motor to the spindle and will not have the clacking sound every time the heated seam hits the pulley.
    david

    #52586
    clockman1509
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    • Topics Started: 14
    • Total Posts: 47

    Hi Dave thanks for the help so far, sorry to be a pain. I have unscrewed the 3 jaw chuck from the arbour only to find that the arbour looks as though it has a screw thread like a Collet as it is hollow all the way through, I have screwed the chuck back on and filled the spindle with hydraulic fluid to soak overnight. do you have any other thoughts.
    Thanks
    Alan

    #52587
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Alan,
    Make sure you have a WW patern 8mm lathe and not a mandril. You may have to ask the previous owner if the lathe used collets. The penetrating oil available over in the U.S.A. is called LIQUID WRENCH. It is thin and able to work its way into the spaces between tight metal parts. If you can’t purchase it in your area use diesel fuel. The brass rod must be a diameter that allows it to fit through the back of the spindle and contact the piece to be pushed out.
    david

    #52588
    clockman1509
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    • Topics Started: 14
    • Total Posts: 47

    Hi Dave it is a Boley 1 ww that takes 8 mm collets. it came with about 14. its just strange the the mandrel on the chuck is hollow with a screw thread where the chuck attatches to it. if this can,t be taken out is there a supplier that i could purchase a headstock for this lathe. I have looked on ebay to no avail.
    thanks Alan

    #52589
    david pierce
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    • Topics Started: 90
    • Total Posts: 1360

    Alan,
    You will not have to buy a new headstock. You can get the stuck part out of the spindle. You will have to get a brass rod of the proper size and disassemble the headstock as I posted in the last thread. You want to remove the part without damaging the spindle. This can be done with the proper procedures.
    david

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tmac1956Newbe advice on a lathe…