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Which Lathe???

I need a bit of help here.

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Paul Smith 3705/04/2020 23:23:11
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66 forum posts
Posted by Martin Hamilton 1 on 05/04/2020 23:17:23:

I have always thought Myfords have been way over priced, as an example Home & Workshop Machinery has a Myford Connoisseur big bore for a whopping £14000 + vat £16800 total.

Thats a lot of money for a lathe.

Hollowpoint05/04/2020 23:33:51
322 forum posts
30 photos
Posted by Paul Smith 37 on 05/04/2020 22:31:35:

Im looking into the Boxford box lathes, they maybe very efficient in what they do, which is of course the primary goal, but lack the charisma of a myford super 7 style lathe. Or Is it me just being a tart?

Function over form for me. But I get where you're coming from. If you want charm and charisma buy a cowells me90. 😊

I don't think an ML7 is a massive upgrade over your ML10 to be honest. I had an ML10 and I actually preferred it!

I started with a very basic Raglan Loughborough training lathe which I quickly upgraded to an ML7 when one came along at a price I could not reuse with loads of accessories. I only owned the ML7 for about 12 months. I kinda regretted selling the Raglan and the ML7 actually seemed like a bit of a down grade. I gained screwcutting with the Myford but the Raglan was more rigid, had a bigger bore, bigger centre hight, was smoother and was metric. After the Myford I bought a Boxford AUD which had the best quality's of bothe the Raglan and the Myford. I can honestly say I have never looked back and I can't ever imagine parting with my Boxford now.

Bazyle05/04/2020 23:51:04
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5145 forum posts
199 photos

As a Boxford owner I only see Myfords at exhibitions and they always strike me a 'dinky' and 'cute' as they are invariably polished up a part of a demonstration. Bit like having a fancy sports car seems nice but you still need a Landrover to pull the log trailer.

Steviegtr06/04/2020 00:09:15
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1166 forum posts
99 photos

I took out my headstock shaft, if that's what it is called. So I could take it to the autojumble with me to match a chuck for it. One thing I did think was if you considered opening up the bore. I.E Making a new shaft. Then all the gears would need remake , or rebore etc. Big job I guess. I have had the Super 7 a while now & it is a great machine , but I can appreciate the limits of a MT2. Not a problem for me as I have a cut off machine & bandsaw. But loading large stock a no-no.

Steve.

Hopper06/04/2020 04:12:24
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4423 forum posts
94 photos

Unless the large diameter job is overly long, you can use a fixed steady to machine larger diameter jobs in a Myford. Works surprisingly well.

But I would take a Boxford or other South Bend clone over a Myford if I had the choice. More solid machine than the Myford all round but similar footprint area.

But as you already have a ML7 you might as well keep it and learn to use the fixed steady for larger jobs.

mgnbuk06/04/2020 10:01:12
748 forum posts
60 photos

Slightly modified description :

Model A:- Screwcutting with quickchange g/box., power cross feed & long. feed. Back geared headstock.

Model B:- Screwcutting with changewheels, power cross-feed & long. feed. Back geared headstock.

Model C;- Screwcutting with changewheels. Back geared headstock.

Model T : Plain lathe - no screwcutting facility, no back gear. May only have been available as underdrive (TUD)

Unlike the Models A & B, the Model C does not have the power longitudinal feed provided by the bed rack & pinion. The leadscrew on the A & B has a longitudinal groove that drives the power feed apron, with the thread on the leadscrew just being used for screwcutting. The C does not have the groove & just has half nuts - longitudinal feeds use the leadscrew thread. which causes more leadscrew wear & could (in theory) cause screwcutting errors.

TUDs seem an inexpensive way to buy an unworn bed to refurbish a more capable machine.

I have always considered Home & Workshop Machinery pricing to be "optimistic".

Nigel B.

Howard Lewis06/04/2020 10:03:52
3154 forum posts
2 photos

STEVEIGTR

If you are looking for extra chucks for your ML7 the chuck, or its backplate should have a thread 1.125 x 12 tpi Whit form.

When things return to normal, you should be able find a backplate to fit a ML7 quite easily (Arc Euro certainly sell them).

Hope that you did not lose / misplace any shims when you removed the mandrel to take it to the auto jumble.

Personally would not have done it that way, but hopefully, no harm done.

If it broke, don't fix. Disturbing things without good reason could cause more harm than good.

Howard

Edited By Howard Lewis on 06/04/2020 10:06:06

Mick B106/04/2020 10:07:00
1557 forum posts
83 photos
Posted by Paul Smith 37 on 05/04/2020 19:42:13:

So what chinese lathes are any good?

I replaced my Myford Speed 10 with a Warco WM250V five years ago. I kept my Jacobs chuck and Myford double-swivel vertical slide and used them on the Warco.

There were a couple of issues early on with the Warco, arguably my own fault, but all were resolved very successfully. I use it most days and have done a pretty wide variety of work on it. On every imaginable criterion it's a long way ahead of any ML10 variant.

I wouldn't go back to the Myford 10 now for all the tea in China.

thaiguzzi06/04/2020 10:20:08
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691 forum posts
131 photos
Posted by Paul Smith 37 on 05/04/2020 22:31:35:

Im looking into the Boxford box lathes, they maybe very efficient in what they do, which is of course the primary goal, but lack the charisma of a myford super 7 style lathe. Or Is it me just being a tart?

Yes, you are just being a tart.

Now where did i put those fishnets and stilletos?

Regards,

A happy Boxford camper.

Mick B106/04/2020 10:37:10
1557 forum posts
83 photos
Posted by thaiguzzi on 06/04/2020 10:20:08:
Posted by Paul Smith 37 on 05/04/2020 22:31:35:

Im looking into the Boxford box lathes, they maybe very efficient in what they do, which is of course the primary goal, but lack the charisma of a myford super 7 style lathe. Or Is it me just being a tart?

Yes, you are just being a tart.

Now where did i put those fishnets and stilletos?

Regards,

A happy Boxford camper.

Yup, the moment you start talking about charisma, you've left Engineering.

Paul Smith 3706/04/2020 11:06:18
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66 forum posts

The other criteria which ive forgotten is the ability to move it fairly easily, as ive a view of moving in a couple of years, so i dont want a 400 kg monster to lug about. Yes, i accept im a tart. haha

mgnbuk06/04/2020 11:11:26
748 forum posts
60 photos

I took out my headstock shaft, if that's what it is called

The correct term is "spindle". The threaded section that you wish to try in a backplate is the "spindle nose".

It is not, as some insist on calling it, a "mandrel". A mandrel is a form of workholding device that is mounted on the spindle, in a chuck or between centres.

Nigel B.

SillyOldDuffer06/04/2020 11:21:23
5650 forum posts
1159 photos
Posted by Paul Smith 37 on 05/04/2020 22:31:35:

Im looking into the Boxford box lathes, they maybe very efficient in what they do, which is of course the primary goal, but lack the charisma of a myford super 7 style lathe. Or Is it me just being a tart?

Since you ask, yes, that's how tarts think!

What do you want a lathe for? If it's for cutting metal, almost any machine will do. For rough work, badly worn classic machines and rough Chinese can both perform. In skilled hands it's remarkable what can be done.

In 1947, Myford released a hobby lathe that made all the others look dated or inadequate. It included many modern features - like guarded gears - and was well made. It struck an excellent balance between quality, size, functionality and price. Price was vital, because, although an expensive stretch for most, Myford lathes were just affordable.

Most other good lathes were aimed at the professional market. The cheapest Boxford was about half as expensive again as Myford's dearest machine. Other makes were seriously big money. Mostly bigger and heavier than the Super 7 with complicated 3-phase power requirements. They were bought by schools, colleges, universities, garages, workshops, and factories for whom Myford lathes were too small and on the delicate side.

Time marches on!

From 1980-ish onwards CNC made most manual machines obsolete. Many were and are sold in excellent condition, often much cheaper than a Myford. Myford have a deservedly good reputation but part of it is suspect. Model Engineers had spent 40 years telling themselves that Myford made the best lathe in the world, which was only true while the alternatives were unaffordable.

As VFD's have solved the 3-phase problem and second-hand professional lathes are being dumped by industry and education, its realistic for hobbyists to go up-market from Myford.

At the same time, Far Eastern makers started producing lathes of more modern design. Easier and cheaper to manufacture than a Super 7, and - for the hobby market, made down to a price. They're a bit rough, but despite numerous minor warts, my WM280 is 'better' than a Super 7 because it's bigger, and cheaper, and does all that I want of it. (26mm spindle bore) True it has no charisma, but I bought it to cut metal, and don't mind fettling it myself! Not clear exactly were the Chinese designs came from; the general approach reflects European and USA thinking developed during the 1950s, which recognises the foolishness of paying for unnecessary quality.

When Chinese lathes are discussed on the forum, we mean the hobby machines. As far as I know, no-one on the forum has ever bought an expensive Chinese lathe. If you have £10,000 plus to spend they do some nice machines...

30 years ago, telling beginners to buy Myford was good advice. Dubious today because the machines are 30 years older and there are far more alternatives.

In the end, it's what you want. I don't care my lathe is warty, others are thoroughly irritated by minor issues. I wanted to buy a lathe to fit the space available, have it delivered, and be able to return it if it was a dud. At the time I wasn't confident I could check out a second-hand lathe, and I couldn't travel far to look at candidates. But that's just me, you might enjoy the hunt, and value pride of ownership.

Do you like a sparkly clean tidy workshop? Mine's a disgrace. Your goals, interests and psychology matter.

Dave

Paul Smith 3706/04/2020 11:37:07
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66 forum posts

Thanks Dave, great reply!

My workshop mostly is a mess, and i focus upon what im making, however, a lada niva will get you to your destination as would a nice golf. Id prefer the golf.

I think you have to enjoy using the machine as that is part of the experience of making the item in hand, having a machine which is a nuisance to use is a pain in the arse for me .

Ive a Warco pillar drill, thats ok, you can tell its chinesium, but it does its job,not quality, but it drills holes.

My ideal machine would be a big bore super 7. But i cant warrant 10 grand on it.My idea was to buy a 2 grand super 7 and fit a big bore headstock to it. and add the metric conversion for the gearbox LIghtish, portable, big capacity, threadcutting, umpteeen speeds,.and you can use it as a milling machine( you can with lathes with the correct tooling).

I guess that exercise would cost 3.5k if i can get the headstock at 1500 pounds.

So that money could buy an off the shelf unit with a reasonable quality level.

The hunt continues....

Most of the boxfords ive seen are three phase, but that doesnt phase me! pardon the pun.

Ill see if the home workshop firm will let me in for a wander with gloves and a mask on for a peruse.

Thanks again Dave for a great reply.

Hopper06/04/2020 12:01:26
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4423 forum posts
94 photos
Posted by mgnbuk on 06/04/2020 11:11:26:

I took out my headstock shaft, if that's what it is called

The correct term is "spindle". The threaded section that you wish to try in a backplate is the "spindle nose".

It is not, as some insist on calling it, a "mandrel". A mandrel is a form of workholding device that is mounted on the spindle, in a chuck or between centres.

Nigel B.

That is true today but was not always so. Probably up to the 1950s or so the term mandrel was commonly used to describe what we now call the headstock spindle. Most of the old books on ME and lathes etc -- by the likes of LH Sparey and Duplex -- refer to the mandrel, which I always did think was odd. But apparently, the term mandrel originally referred to any shaft on which something else was mounted to rotate it, circular saws and lathes included.

That's my useless bit of trivia for the day!

Edited By Hopper on 06/04/2020 12:03:17

Howard Lewis06/04/2020 12:02:52
3154 forum posts
2 photos

For many years my ambition was to own a Myford (mainly because it was the only hobby lathe of which I was aware. I had operated DSG, Edgwick, herbert and Ward in Industry )

Finally I got one, but the design was over forty years old, and I found limitations, for what I wanted to do. So, perhaps it was not the best choice. Before it went, it had been fitted with Long Cross Slide, Fourway Toolpost, Swivelling Vertical Slide, Rear Toolpost, Micrometer Dials, a new countershaft and bushes.

On retiring I bought a larger far eastern machine. It has a number of features that the ML7 lacked, and came fully equipped, fitted with a VFD, at a quarter of the price of a new equivalent Super 7 Sigma, which lacked power cross.feed.

Over the last 16 years it has done all that I asked of it, and some things that were imagined to be beyond it.

Yes, there were a couple of silly minor, not insuperable, problems, and I have made one or two small mods, but overall it it suits me.

It will not command the price premium of a 7 Series, but does what is required. A carthorse perhaps rather than a steeplechaser?

Most of what I do could still be done on a ML7, but at the expense of wasted chucking pieces, and less conveniently.

Fantastic work has been, and is still, done on Myford 7 Series lathes but I have few regrets over my choice.

Everyone must decide what is most important and buy the machine that seems most fit for their purpose.

Howard

Paul Smith 3706/04/2020 12:06:57
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66 forum posts

Thanks Mr Hopper and Howard for your replies. Ill have to wait until this corona thing goes and have a trot over to Warco and check them out .

Any other brands and models which may fit the criteria?

Hollowpoint06/04/2020 12:11:56
322 forum posts
30 photos

While I still think you should buy a Boxford, I kinda agree with what you say. You need to enjoy using your lathe otherwise whats the point?

As well as the Boxford I also have a Chinese mini lathe. The Boxford encourages use because it is a pleasure to work on. The mini lathe on the other hand drives me up the wall because jobs seem to take twice as long. Probably because I spend much of the time troubleshooting why it isnt working properly. 😒

If you have your heart set on a Myford, buy a Myford. It's not like you are buying junk, they are a good machine and they hold their value anyway. I have a feeling that in your case buying anything other would leave you with a sense of unfulfillment.

Michael Gilligan06/04/2020 12:20:53
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15500 forum posts
670 photos
Posted by Mick B1 on 06/04/2020 10:37:10:
.
... the moment you start talking about charisma, you've left Engineering.

.

And [perhaps] become an amateur in the true sense of the word.

MichaelG.

Michael Gilligan06/04/2020 12:20:55
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15500 forum posts
670 photos

< deleted double post  >

Edited By Michael Gilligan on 06/04/2020 12:22:32

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