Hi out there. I just joined for the express purpose of posting this info.
I recently bought an old Rockwell 46-450 wood lathe that had some serious wear issues.
Mainly, the center pulley in the Reeves drive was completely flopping around and clanking and not allowing full range of speeds. Also the speed lever would not lock and hold a speed. (new washer and a readjustment of the hex screw cured this)
I took it apart reluctantly. Never even seen one of these before. The problem was obvious. Bushing of the center pulley was worn to almost nothing. Took it to the auto parts store/machine shop. They said they could mill out new ones out of some bronze transmission bushings and install them for $100. But the machinist was going on vacation for a week. Looked all over the internet for advice or parts/repacement contacts. Found a lot of people moaning about Reeves drives and the good folks at Popular Machinist who just milled their own new ones. No practical advice for the common man.
Next day I went to Ace hardware in Taos, NM with the center pulley in hand and found that they had stock bronze bushings in their collection that looked like they would fit inside the pulley but had a flange on one end. Kind of doubted they’d fit the shaft but I’d worry about that later.
I bought 2 at $4.40 each (they are only one inch deep and pulley center is 2 1/4 inches.) Took them back to the shop and slid one onto the shaft and lo and behold! You all know that feeling of YES! SCORE! it was a perfect fit. Slid on nicely and spun free. I filed a groove through the old bushings in the pulley and they came out easily. Pressed the new ones in, one from each side and left enough to sawzall the flange off and then filed them smooth. Cleaned up the edges and slid the pulley into place. Put the outer pulley on, aligned the pin holes and tapped in the pin. Center pulley slid back and forth on the shaft easily and engaged both sides of the other pulleys well.
Assembed back into the lathe (after cleaning all the gunk and rust out of the spiral slot on the body of the Reeves casting till it moved smoothly)
.....and what a wonderful feeling to turn it on and hear it hum and go through the speed changes smoothly and quietly. And lock in place and hold. Yes.
So I wanted to pass this tidbit along because I can’t be the only one that’s had this issue of the thousands of these school lathes that are out there.
There is a question I have about using link belts on Reeves Drives. Is anyone doing that? Does it help? Is it worth doing? Couldn’t find that out either