Age of Geneva Lathe

Discussion in 'Horological Tools' started by Dave Coatsworth, Aug 3, 2019.

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  1. Dave Coatsworth

    Dave Coatsworth Forums Administrator
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    Feb 11, 2005
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    I'm shipping this lathe and accessories out of the country. For Customs purposes, I'm wondering if I can declare it as an antique. Can anyone put an approximate age on it? It's a G. Boley 6.5mm.

    wt7291-1L.jpg wt7291-2L.jpg
     
  2. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    “For U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) purposes an antique must be over 100 years of age at the time of importation.”

    could it be that old?
     
  3. Dave Coatsworth

    Dave Coatsworth Forums Administrator
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    #3 Dave Coatsworth, Aug 3, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2019
    I don't know. I have catalogs going back to the 1880's that show Geneva lathes. I just haven't found this exact G. Boley yet.

    I should have said that this is going to Canada. I wonder if they have the same 100 year limit...


    Edit: Canada has a 50-100 year old category that is apparenty duty free. I'm thinking there's a good chance this lathe is more than 50 years old.
     
  4. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    i’m thinking @Jerry Kieffer would know.... ??
     
  5. gmorse

    gmorse Registered User
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    Hi Dave,

    Earlier than 1919? I'd be very surprised if it wasn't. The 6.5mm versions were an early experiment I believe, which didn't seem to offer much advantage over the 6mm. I can't find any reference to it on lathes.co.uk, apart from the collets tables, but I know that Wolf Jahn also made some models in this size.

    Regards,

    Graham
     
  6. Jerry Kieffer

    Jerry Kieffer Registered User
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    Dave
    Been down this road before.

    From what I have seen in past research and your photos, I suspect that your lathe was mft about 1900.

    If it were mine, I would declare it as follows.

    " Vintage 1900 Watchmakers Lathe and accessories"

    Given the typical value of what is shown in the photos and research difficulty, I doubt they will question it. If they do, theres nothing you can do about it no matter what anyones opinion is.

    Jerry Kieffer
     
  7. Dave Coatsworth

    Dave Coatsworth Forums Administrator
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    Thanks, guys!
     
  8. wefalck

    wefalck Registered User

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    I don't see any oiling caps. If it doesn't have them, it could be a ball-bearing headstock, which then would be 1950s or so.

    On the other hand, it would be quite safe probably to declare whatever is most convenient, as it would be very difficult to prove the contrary without contacting the manufacturer.
     
  9. motormaker

    motormaker Registered User

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    Nope on the ball bearing theory. Those are typical plain bearings oiled by rotating the knurled brass dust co0ver rings.
     
  10. wefalck

    wefalck Registered User

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    Indeed, some manufacturers used this arrangement too. On my Wolf, Jahn & Co. horological milling machine it is like that.

    Neverthelss, the dating of these machines is extremely difficult. Sometimes the state of the nickel-plating helps or on newer samples the edges often appear more rounded to be more in line with the fashion of the day. Older lathes often have a yellowish tint due to iron ions migrating through the copper under-plating and then into the nickel-plating, becoming oxidised there.
     
  11. rstl99

    rstl99 Registered User
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    Well, someone up here is getting a very nice and complete watchmaker lathe kit! I wish I had half those accessories on mine (still working on it! :)
    Canadian Border authorities seem intent on charging duty and taxes on most anything coming into the country now, so there likely will be some charges added on for the buyer. Sometimes throwing the word "used" in the description will allow something to squeak through, but not always.
    As I said, someone should be very happy with that kit.
    --Robert
     
  12. Dr. Jon

    Dr. Jon Registered User
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    The 6.5mm makes it over 100 years old. The ones from the 19 teens are all 8mm. There is an advantage to a 6.5 lathe. It can also take 6mm collets.
     
  13. Dave Coatsworth

    Dave Coatsworth Forums Administrator
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    Thank you Dr. Jon!
     
  14. wefalck

    wefalck Registered User

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    I believe Boley made the 6.5 mm ones well into the years before WW2, as their competitors made 6 mm ones up to the 1950s.

    I do not think that one can use 6 mm-collets on 6.5 mm-lathes. First the thread diameter is different (check the table in Carlé) and second, the body diameter is obviously 0.5 mm too slim, so that there will be no proper guidance.
     
  15. rstl99

    rstl99 Registered User
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    About exporting to Canada, I just learned the hard way what one SHOULD describe an item like this being shipped, to avoid the recipient from paying unnecessary duty and taxes. I bought a box of old lathe parts from Germany (300 euros), and am being charged $100 for duty taxes. In researching the Border Services website, I see that "antiques" and "hobby tools" are exempt from duty. So next time, I'll instruct the seller to describe the item as "antique hobby tools". Mind you, I find that asking the seller to do something, and getting it done that way, are two very different things. :rolleyes:
     
  16. wefalck

    wefalck Registered User

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    Some years ago I swapped some lathe parts with a Canadian. He didn't complain afterwards about duties. Not sure what I wrote into the customs declaration then, but probably something like 'spare parts'.
     
  17. rstl99

    rstl99 Registered User
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    On the paperwork with the box the seller had (unbeknownst to me) indicated that the package was a "gift". So his heart was in the right place, he was trying to save me some $$'s. But he didn't follow my instructions to describe it as "used hand tools", but rather wrote "uhrmacher drehbank" (watchmaker lathe, which is what it is). But no indication of it being used left the customs agent the liberty to assume it was "new", simply disregard the "gift" indication, and slap the duty and taxes on me.
    Part of the inconveniences of buying used tools online from another continent, but I suppose that's counterbalanced by the great opportunity we have to find and buy all kinds of interesting and useful tools that we'd never find locally.
     

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