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engaging back gear om Drummond M type lathe

Bull gear

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james short12/07/2018 10:47:26
3 forum posts

Hi I have just joined group ? and have purchased a Drummond M type lathe 1948 ,How do I engage back gear.I have read some ware that when altering the Bull gear you have to be careful not to over loosen the nut or it falls into the works ,any suggestions

not done it yet12/07/2018 12:34:03
2227 forum posts
11 photos


You will likely get your answer here, but do join the yahoo group for Drummond lathes - as much as I hate navigating any and all of the yahoo forums! Some good posters over there, other than the ones that frequent this forum as well.

NJH12/07/2018 14:12:23
2310 forum posts
139 photos

Hi James

If you have not yet done so look up - they have information about pretty nearly every lathe made. It may set you on the right course.


David George 112/07/2018 20:22:22
504 forum posts
184 photos

Hi James I have an M Type and to change to back gear there is a slotted screw on the bull gear just loosen and rotate the bull gear with the button to the end of the slot. Then re tighten the slotted screw. You then rotate the back gear lever to engage the mesh on the gears rotate as you do to help engagement. Do the reverse to take out the back gear but after rotating the bull gear slot tighten the screw and importantly hold the chuck and by hand rotate the pulley to make sure that the spring loaded plunger has located you will hear and know when it is. If you need any further info send me a message and it is worth looking on my album's for info.


Edited By David George 1 on 12/07/2018 20:24:51

Hopper13/07/2018 09:02:39
2958 forum posts
50 photos

Welcome to the forum. There are quite a few of us M-type owners on here. Not sure which nut you are worried about falling into the works? If you mean the slot-headed screw on the front of the bull gear that you slacken to rotate the plate to engage/disengage the bull gear, it only needs to be loosened a quarter of a turn or less to allow the plate to be rotated around to the end of its slot. The screw is then retightened before starting the motor.

The main thing is to MAKE SURE the bull gear is disengaged from the pulley unit before engaging the back gear and starting the motor. When the bull gear is disengaged, but the back has not yet been disengaged, you should be able to turn the chuck or spindle by hand freely without the pulleys and belts moving. Once you can do that, engage teh back gear and start the motor.

Ady113/07/2018 09:11:34
3329 forum posts
425 photos

I use a pair of longnose pliers in my right hand to gently pull on the brass pin then my left hand thumb shoves the knurled screw clockwise while my left hand fingers hold the outer rim of the bullwheel

this pushes the inner plate forwards to wedge the pin out and disengages the bullwheel from the pulley, making the backgear system available

Reverse the procedure to go direct drive again

Edited By Ady1 on 13/07/2018 09:14:39

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