The things that I forgot to consider when buying an antique lathe

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Forum topic by Beaujangles posted 03-13-2012 12:45 AM 5051 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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5 posts in 2823 days

03-13-2012 12:45 AM

Topic tags/keywords: 10106260 atlas craftsman sears lathe antique restoration

Hi everyone. Thanks for looking. Just start this off, this is the first lathe I’ve ever owned. I’ve used one at a friends house a few times, but consider me to be wet behind the ears.

I bought this old lathe on craigslist a few weeks back for a song, and it’s in really good condition for the most part. The stand isn’t too stable, so I’ll be rebuilding that, but I couldn’t find much rust on it. It looks great.

The Model # 101.06260

So, Question #1, can anyone direct me to a Users manual for it? I’ve exhausted google and thought I would find a manual on VintageMachinery , but so far, I’ve got nothing. I was hoping if I could find it, that maybe I could answer most of my own questions as they come up. This question was answered by Yves

#2 I would like to buy a live center for it. The lathe came with 2 dead centers that are not stamped in any way. When I retracted the tail stock all the way, the stock would push the centers loose for removal. Not knowing what type to buy, I borrowed a #2 MT live center from a friend and it seemed to fit it like a glove, but when I retracted the tail stock, it did not touch the center. My friends #2 MT was about 1/4 inch shorter than the center that came with it, but seemed to have the same dimensions otherwise. Can I buy MT2 centers at various lengths or is this another type?

#3 One of the things that I’ll need to do is replace the belt. It’s falling apart. I was concerned that I might need some special tools like a press or something to get the headstock back together if I took it apart. If it does require a press, would it be a good idea to wrap a link belt around it and see if it works without having to get it rebuilt right away?

#4 Last question today, I promise. The stand that its built on has the motor mounted on a piece of plywood connected to the base via a piano hinge. So basically, it’s just the weight of the motor providing friction to the pulleys. The lathe had a turned leg mounted on it when I picked it up, so I turned it on and put metal to wood. The second I touched the wood, all motion stopped, except for the motor, that kept going. Very light touch on a very round surface. I was kind of hoping it just needed a new belt and a live center, but I’m wondering if I need to make any changes to the way the stand is configured?

I found the photos below of a beautiful restoration done by Yankeetoys. It’s of the same model as mine. I tried to email him directly but the sites email server returned my message as undeliverable.

Thank you for taking the time to look through my post. I really would appreciate it if you could share some of your hard earned insight with me.

Best Regards,

-- "If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself." -- Albert Einstein

4 replies so far

View yrob's profile


340 posts in 3676 days

#1 posted 03-13-2012 12:56 AM

They are still selling parts for it at the sears website. Unfornuately, some parts are no longer available and this includes the manual…

-- Yves

View Beaujangles's profile


5 posts in 2823 days

#2 posted 03-13-2012 01:54 AM

Thanks Yves, Question #1- Answered!
I got the part number for the center from the listing you provided and googled it. If I didn’t find the owners manual, I found the owner manual for it’s twin brother. This should help out a lot, I’m going to try to pull the lathe apart this week using the diagrams in the manual. I called the sears service line and they couldn’t give me any more information on the manual or the centers. The tech suggested I call Atlas, I’ll call their parent company when they open in the morning. The manual does discuss how to mount the motor, so that helps a lot too, does anyone have a number in mind for how much tension is enough?

-- "If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself." -- Albert Einstein

View hairy's profile


2718 posts in 3556 days

#3 posted 03-13-2012 02:38 AM

Check to see if the #2 MT center is a good fit when the tailstock is NOT retracted. Normally, that’s how the center is ejected from the tailstock.

-- My reality check bounced...

View Beaujangles's profile


5 posts in 2823 days

#4 posted 03-13-2012 11:07 PM

Thanks for the link Hairy. The MT2 that I got on loan fits great with it retracted or not, but the quill in the tailstock just won’t reach the center when its fully retracted. Looking at the link you provided, I think the one I’m testing is missing the stub (tang) shown by L3. Where would I look to buy a center where I can specify the length needed for that taper or where I can specify that I would like a tang attached?

-- "If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself." -- Albert Einstein

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