Got the lathe and yeah, does need work!

Discussion in 'Horological Tools' started by Watchfixer, Aug 3, 2011.

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  1. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    Got this Ballou Whitcomb & Co Boston Mass Watchmaker's lathe;

    On the headstock, I can see a flat blade screw in the pulley and also a steel knurled with slit to the thread on the shaft for the drawbar and collet. This headstock have four brass dust covers for the bearings/shaft. Also there are 2 pipes sticking up which I knew is for oil feed and I'll make a replacement friction fit oil plug for the missing one. Lathe came with a #32 collet in good shape but it's tight, that I have to bump collet out with drawbar means have to clean out dirty bore.

    This steel knurled knob is that meant for setting up bearings clearance? The little flat blade screw on the pulley is only for securing the pulley to the headstock shaft?

    Other question how do I take apart the tailstock? This also is very stiff action when I crank this to extend and retract this. What is the tools looks like and what size that fits this tailstock's bore?

    Other than that, any other needed work to get lathe up to optimum standards after cleaning? The T-rest is not flipover but I could buy one that does later but the T-rest edge is full of little nicks from decades of use should I smooth it off with stone so gravers can slide easily as intended? This is first time I have a lathe and so happy and excited to put it to use once I have all the necessary stuff. :) This lathe's base is part of the bed so I'd have to make a little table with motor mounted on it as well.

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     

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  2. Dean Williams

    Dean Williams Registered User

    Jun 5, 2011
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    Hi Jason;
    The spindle bore could be dirty, like you say, or the collet that is in there may be an 8mm size, and you have a WW
    lathe. The 8mm is a couple of thousandths larger and may not suit the lathe. You can measure it. WW should be
    .312"-.313" and 8mm about .315". Some work, some don't.

    That is correct. If you take off the steel split ring and have to use a screwdriver, take care not to scar the spindle threads.
    Also, when you put the spindle back in, there should be a small drive pin in the left hand cone bearing housing. Make sure it
    lines up with the flat spot on the spindle threads.

    I don't know this tailstock design so can't help with taking it apart.
    The piece that generally goes in the tailstock bore looks like a large taper pin. It's called a dead center. There are other
    things that can fit in there, like drill collets. There are also some Jacot type ends to go in for holding pivots.
    The tools may be different tapers for different brands of lathe. If you find a local place to buy them, take your tailstock runner
    with you to make sure they fit. You can make them, but it takes some trial and error to get the taper right.

    You will probably want to make an index pin for the headstock. It looks like yours is missing, or I just can't see it.
    You'll want a tip up rest right off. Very handy for checking parts sizes without loosing the setup on your rest.

    For the nicks in the rest, use a fine file, and be careful to file it very straight so you don't end up with a slope, which
    will change the height of your tool as you cut. File "long ways" along the top of the rest. It should also have a slight bevel
    toward the back of it, (toward the operator). After filing out the nicks, stone it smooth so your tool glides on it easily.

    Dean
     
  3. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    #3 Watchfixer, Aug 4, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2011
    The pulley does have index, incredibly fine! Looks like over 100 holes, even 120. Does the pin have a way of detent to keep pin locked in and not pop out?

    Lathe is dirty not scarred. This is a lathe that looked like it not ever been apart on the head & tail stocks due to built up dirt and old lube mixed yet spindle bearings is clean under the dust collars plus old lube. Since so much junk built up in the grooves of bakelite pulley, how do I clean this proper way?

    If the collet was larger, it would had locked up TIGHT. It is merely stuck and gentle slaps on the drawbar pops the collet for me to grasp collet and pull.

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  4. Dean Williams

    Dean Williams Registered User

    Jun 5, 2011
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    Mine doesn't, but it's a different brand. Pin is a very close fit in the hole in the headstock.

    I don't see anything in those pulley grooves. It looks normal, to me. If you clean it,
    I think you shouldn't use water. Maybe just a dry tooth brush.

    Not necessarily, Jason. Some American lathes will take 8mm size collets, even though the lathe is made for WW collets.
    I've had a few of these lathes, and my current one is a Webster. It is a WW spindle, but 8mm collets will still go in, and
    they do not lock up tight. They are just snug. I use WW collets in it, but have a few 8mm that will go in.
    The difference in size between WW and 8mm collets is only .002"-.003" on the smooth part of the shank. Measure your collet.

    Dean
     
  5. Smudgy

    Smudgy Registered User

    May 20, 2003
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    If you didn't loosen the knurled knob on top of the tailstock that is why it is tight. The knob locks the runner in the tailstock.
     
  6. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    I'll do more checking later on that #32 collet size (don't have a measuring caliper, what one is good one?)

    Yes, I did make sure tailstock lock down knob is already loose. Still sticky and resistance when I wind this tailstock in and out. That lathe really need cleaning up in disassembled state. Everything I touch is sticky, and dust build up in some places and dirty in the grooves of the pulley.

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  7. R.G.B.

    R.G.B. Registered User

    Feb 27, 2009
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    Hope you get it up and running, I love the design work on that one.
     
  8. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    I"m resurrecting this thread, the collet body length is 9.5cm long not shorter as other usual collets or is the info on the NAWCC is wrong?

    I need to add more stuff to this lathe as time goes. By the way lathe name is "Ballou, Whitcomb & Co. Boston, Mass" I have not heard of the "Ballou" anywhere else.

    Thanks & Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  9. Per G

    Per G Registered User

    Jan 9, 2007
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    Ballou, Whitcomb & Co. was a precision machine tool company part-owned by Whitcomb in the 1870s before he teamed up with Webster to develop the Webster-Whitcomb, WW, lathe.
    Could be that your collet is an original Ballou & Whitcomb. Other vital dimensions being equal, they were longer than WW collets.

    Per
     
  10. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    That's much better info, I wished that was noted earlier and I would not had bought that little early lathe. So I have a request following;

    If one have a later standard WW 8mm collet, do not mind sending one for little money so I can test fit this on this odd lathe? Also there is extension collet drawbar on ebay.

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  11. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    Okay, if I put wanted words out for a used complete kit of watchmaker's lathe with box in the 4sale$NAWCC section, what is average price for this especially 8mm lathe? So I know what expected to pay for this. Ebay is no good for used complete kit except jacot tools and occasional turns.

    Also I do not know if the mart is there (for buying used stuff like watches, tools etc) at chapter 92, 111 or 119. These three chapters are nearest where I live.

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  12. harold bain

    harold bain Forums Administrator

    Nov 4, 2002
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    You left out Chapter 33. Certainly used lathes turn up fairly regularly at chapter meetings. Our next meeting May 6th is the big one for the year, with two mart rooms.
    www.torontochapter33.ca
     
  13. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    Thank you about that chapter 33. Not this May 6, the route is very bad and we cannot get there easily by car or bus because my mom knew how route was like. Mom and her friend would loved to go to sewing festival this may but this road that hotel lies on is poor due to tremendous traffic and bus routes to change (from union (either way by bus or train).

    I still want to know how Marts are like for other 92, 111 or 119 chapters and dates?

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  14. harold bain

    harold bain Forums Administrator

    Nov 4, 2002
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    I don't know where you are coming from, but Sunday at 8 AM, not much traffic. It's close to major highways, couldn't be easier to get to by car, and is on bus lines. Is a trip to London, Belleville, or Ottawa any easier or closer for you?
     
  15. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
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    Belleville & Ottawa are smaller cities and easily reached for this year if I manage that. If not, next year. Right now I'm unemployed but I do have some money for some spending.

    This is the reason asking how is the marts are like at Belleville and Ottawa?

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  16. Jim Hartog

    Jim Hartog Registered User

    Jan 6, 2010
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    Hello Watchfixer,

    I'm a member of 119 in Belleville and our next meeting is this Sunday, April 15. We have a website for info and directions. We are planning a sale for our June meeting which will have a lot more stuff than our typical mart, I hope. Info on the June meeting should be up on our website in May. You should join a local club. I drive (car pool) from Whitby to Belleville four times a year. Our membership ranges from Whitby in the west, Bancroft in the north, and Kingston to the east. We're not big, but we're friendly. More clock oriented than watches, though. I've never seen an 8 mm collet set at our marts, but, lathes have shown up.

    JIm
     
  17. Watchfixer

    Watchfixer Registered User

    Jun 11, 2011
    1,203
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    I forgot to ask what is best size of belt? I have to get some.

    Cheers, Watchfixer
     
  18. Neeth

    Neeth Registered User

    May 6, 2007
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    Watchfixer,

    I have both a Boley and a Levin lathe. The Levin has a headstock pully that has V grooved sides and the Boley pully has a radius profile like your photo shows.

    Ken W
     
  19. Dushan Grujich

    Dushan Grujich Registered User

    Jun 20, 2003
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    Good Day!

    The best belt size would be between 5/32" and 7/32" but not less than 5/32".


    Ken,

    The pulley on the photo also has "V" shaped grooves, the only difference is that they are with a rounded bottom.

    Cheers

    Dushan
     
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