Buying a used lathe-What to look for?

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Forum topic by Tyrone D posted 06-17-2012 01:08 AM 1019 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Tyrone D

314 posts in 2536 days

06-17-2012 01:08 AM

I’m going to be viewing a Rockwell/Beaver model 3400 lathe in a couple hours. The price is $150. What should I look for as far as functionality?
There is no pictures posted of the ad and the description is very lacking.

Thanks for any advice.

-- --Tyrone - BC, Canada "Nothing is ever perfect, we just run out of time."

2 replies so far

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 3202 days

#1 posted 06-17-2012 03:03 AM

Probably too late but,

You want bearings that are not sloppy or noisy (signs of problems).
Clean tapers in headstock and tailstock.
Headstock spindle threads not all banged up.
Tailstock clamps well and quill that moves easily and locks tightly.
Tool rests that clamp well.
Motor that turns and runs smoothly.

Other than that, they are pretty simple tools. Not too much to go wrong

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

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Tyrone D

314 posts in 2536 days

#2 posted 06-17-2012 05:59 AM

I bought the lathe for $150. I didn’t bother negotiating as the price was low enough as it is and he had another guy coming the next morning.

It’s very rusty which is not a big problem, some elbow grease will get it out. I might try the Evapo-Rust, it’s only 10 dollars for 1 litre at Canadian Tire. Does anyone know any other places that carry Evapo-Rust? I’d like to get a larger jug of it as the Canadian Tire website only shows 1 litre bottles.

The motor sparks when I turn it on, does anyone know of any good motor maintenance guides?

I can’t tell if the bearings are good as the pulleys are very misaligned and they’ll require quite a bit of work to get aligned so I couldn’t really listen to them.

The motor is gravity suspended so I am going to get a Power Twist belt to reduce vibration. I am also going to weigh it down with sandbags on the bottom. I am going to add a third shelf for the sandbags and keep the second shelf for storage.

-- --Tyrone - BC, Canada "Nothing is ever perfect, we just run out of time."

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