By continuing to use this site, you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more
Forum sponsored by:
Forum sponsored by Allendale Jan 24th

New old 1950's Myford 7 Lathe still in the crate

All Topics | Latest Posts

Search for:  in Thread Title in  
Darren Conway07/09/2018 11:26:41
24 forum posts
5 photos


I thought there might be some interest in this.

Back in the 1950's the New Zealand government made it very difficult to import things like lathes. It was really difficult to get foreign currency. Import licensing gave companies monopolies and their prices reflected that. There was no internet to find things.

When someone was able to import a lathe, they made sure they got all the accessories. It was far too difficult and too expensive to go back and get extras. So it is with this lathe.

A lathe like this at that time was so expensive and so difficult to obtain, it was almost too precious to use. As a result there are a reasonable number of good Myford lathes here with plenty of factory accessories.

This one is exceptional because it is still in it's original crate. I can't tell from the photos whether it has been used or not. I don't see any chipped paint. The listing says it is unused.

It is on auction here at this website: **LINK**



See the album for more photos.

Ian S C07/09/2018 13:29:44
7468 forum posts
230 photos

I wonder if the original owner was an immigrant, and bought it with him as baggage. If you find the serial number, you'll be able to find it's age.

Ian S C

Hopper07/09/2018 13:35:54
4636 forum posts
101 photos

Wow. Almost as good as a 1942 Harley in the crate but probably more rare. Looks like an early model from the solid metal oilers on the headstock. My 1957 model had the clear plastic domes.

Would be fascinating to know its story.

Let us know how much it sells for.

Neil Wyatt07/09/2018 14:38:32
17970 forum posts
709 photos
77 articles

Wow that would be a pretty high price by UK standards (about £2,350), but probably reasonable given the extraordinary condition and accessories. Would be great to know the backstory.


Hopper07/09/2018 15:08:18
4636 forum posts
101 photos

Not so high when you compare it with the price of a new Myford, or a factory reconditioned one, today. About 5,000 quid I believe. (Plus shipping, import duties etc to NZ) In Australia, ML7s seem to sell for about $2,000, so about $4,000 for one in the crate is probably about right, IF the right buyer comes along. Super 7s here in Oz seem to go for around $3,000 used.

The problem with buying a "brand new in teh crate" lathe is the same as old Harleys in the crate, of which a few exist. What do you do with it when you have bought it? Sit it there in the crate and look at it? Or uncrate it and fire it up, at which point it is just another used lathe/bike in very good condition and the value drops to the same as all the other lathes/bikes on the market.

Edited By Hopper on 07/09/2018 15:09:15

RevStew07/09/2018 15:14:09
87 forum posts

Anyone who leaves that in the crate needs beating with their own shoes.

Dick H07/09/2018 15:23:35
86 forum posts
1 photos

Perhaps the producers of the BBC2 programme "The Repair Shop" would be interested, then they would have two of them to polish and could use them as bookends?

Carl07/09/2018 15:58:39
21 forum posts

A few old 40’s Harley’s in crates ! where are they hiding then ? Over in the USA I suppose ...old WLA/C stock maybe ?

Meunier07/09/2018 19:07:38
323 forum posts
1 photos

Ian S C, do you reckon the chuck will be stuck on by now ?

Hopper08/09/2018 01:29:58
4636 forum posts
101 photos
Posted by Carl on 07/09/2018 15:58:39:

A few old 40’s Harley’s in crates ! where are they hiding then ? Over in the USA I suppose ...old WLA/C stock maybe ?

USA of course! Also quite a few 1970s models have come up on eBay in recent years, still in the crate, asking crazy prices. They seem to go from one collector to the next. Nobody wants to uncrate them and lose money in order to actually ride a brand new 1979 Shovelhead or whatever. I'm with RevStew; get it out and use it.

There used to be constant rumours in Australia in the '70s of 1942 WLA Harleys in crates by the dozen buried at some old US base out in the bush, or in some forgotten military warehouse. It was always "a friend of a friend" who was taking deposits to put your name on the list to get one...

But this lathe shows that such things can exist, so maybe there was a grain of truth in teh rumours there somewhere?

Edited By Hopper on 08/09/2018 01:34:40

Grotto08/09/2018 03:09:15
124 forum posts
71 photos

I saw a oil in frame Bonneville in the crate for sale a few years back. It had changed hands a few times, with only the lid having been removed.

A panel beater and Triumph enthusiast down the road from me bought it so I went to have a look. He wouldn’t take it out as he reckoned the value would drop.

What a waste of a motorcycle, might as well have had a crate full of scrap metal. I kind of understand people having vehicles with only a few miles on the clock as display items. As least they’re nice to look at, but not don’t reckon a wooden crate is quite the same.

Hopefully someone will buy the lathe and use it.

Roger Provins 208/09/2018 05:57:17
344 forum posts

How about $45,000 for a still sealed camera with an xray to prove the contents ?



Alan Charleston08/09/2018 07:10:05
86 forum posts
20 photos

The seller has posted this:

My grandfather was a fitter and turner by trade and bought it with the intention of using it in his home workshop. However he lost interest in doing so and my father inherited it from him. While my father was also a fitter and turner by trade he never wanted or needed to use it so it had just sat in his garage all these years in its original crate. A great shame really. We'd love it to go to someone who is passionate about using it.


Alan C.

Hopper08/09/2018 07:44:28
4636 forum posts
101 photos

Great story. Yes it would be great to crack it out and use it, at last. A brand new ML7. Third generation lucky!

$45k Leica. Just wow. I always wanted a Leica back when film was still in use. But not that badly!

KWIL08/09/2018 11:53:01
3258 forum posts
63 photos

Where has all the "between parts" packing gone?

It has been out of its box, because without packing, the paint would be in a much worse state.

So does it have a lesser vaule because of this??

Hopper08/09/2018 12:41:57
4636 forum posts
101 photos

Looks like it still has the remnants of the original straw-like packing material sticking out around the bed and saddle area, as if the box has been opened and loose stuff pulled out but the lathe has not been out. Value? Who knows. No offers at $4250 so far, and less than a day to go.

MichaelR08/09/2018 13:51:41
375 forum posts
71 photos

Some years ago I bought a new ML10 direct from Myfords, it came in a box and was covered in a protective grease and packed with waxed paper, I can't see Myfords shipping a lathe out without the protective coating. the lathe in question may have been out of the box for cleaning and then repacked by the owner. Mike.

Darren Conway09/09/2018 00:27:35
24 forum posts
5 photos


If someone buys the lathe for the purpose of using it, it doesn't actually matter if it has been out of the box before. It still appears to be as new.

That sort of money will buy a much more capable lathe here. New Chinese/Taiwanese or alternatively used. I paid about 30% less for a Nardini MS350 lathe in good condition (ex South African University research lab) that will turn 350mm dia, 1m between centres.

It is very difficult to find good used machine tools here. Any light industrial tools have had all their life fully expended. Ones accessible to students have often been abused. There is only a small population here in a small country. It took me over 3 years to find my first lathe (Denford) and about 7 to find the Nardini.


John Olsen09/09/2018 00:54:56
1048 forum posts
91 photos
1 articles

Here in New Zealand you can buy one of these **LINK** for $4000. I know which I would rather have when compared to the ML7. I actually own an ML7, not brand new of course , but it has always been in the same family and is in good nick.

I know there are those who worship the Myford name, but really they have their problems. The Chinese stuff is good value, especially if you get up a bit in size, like the one I linked to above.

There was a case here some years back where a Studebaker car was found in a shed with only delivery mileage on it. The buyer had died just after taking delivery, and his wife had just left it in the shed. So of course whoever ended up with it was expecting big money. But actually, after thirty or forty years in a shed it would need some serious work to be in good running condition, and as soon as you start using it it is just another old car...interesting but no more valuable than any other example.


Hopper09/09/2018 08:35:57
4636 forum posts
101 photos

I'd rather have a brand new Myford for $4,000 than the linked Optimum at any price. Based on the single Optimum I have personal experience with. Very poor machine indeed.

All Topics | Latest Posts

Please login to post a reply.

Magazine Locator

Want the latest issue of Model Engineer or Model Engineers' Workshop? Use our magazine locator links to find your nearest stockist!

Find Model Engineer & Model Engineers' Workshop

Latest Forum Posts
Support Our Partners
Allendale Electronics
Eccentric July 5 2018
Eccentric Engineering
Subscription Offer

Latest "For Sale" Ads
Latest "Wanted" Ads
Get In Touch!

Do you want to contact the Model Engineer and Model Engineers' Workshop team?

You can contact us by phone, mail or email about the magazines including becoming a contributor, submitting reader's letters or making queries about articles. You can also get in touch about this website, advertising or other general issues.

Click THIS LINK for full contact details.

For subscription issues please see THIS LINK.

Digital Back Issues

Social Media online

'Like' us on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter
 Twitter Logo

Pin us on Pinterest