old Powermatic model 90 lathe

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Forum topic by finally posted 04-12-2015 05:26 PM 970 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 1320 days

04-12-2015 05:26 PM

I need help. If you own a powermatic model 90 lathe please respond. I have just reassembled my vintage powermatic model 90 and when I turn on the lathe it starts spinning, even if the variable speed control lever is in the stop position. If I move the control lever the speed of the lathe will vary but when I go to stop the lathe only slows and does not stop. I feel this is not correct. Can some one with the same lathe confirm my thoughts. Thanks in advance Ken

-- Ken, Alaska

3 replies so far

View Biggamefish's profile


59 posts in 1598 days

#1 posted 04-13-2015 11:06 AM

If you are turning the lathe off it should stop. If you are keeping the lathe on and just turning the control lever down it is just going to the slowest speed allowed.

-- ><((((º>`·. .· `·. .· `·... ><((((º> · `·. . . . .· `·.. ><((((º>`·. .· `·... ><((((º> 

View Nubsnstubs's profile


1414 posts in 1908 days

#2 posted 04-13-2015 02:16 PM

Logic dictates that if the speed control has “Stop” on it, the spindle should come to a complete stop when put in that position. Concerning machinery, there are no “California Stops” allowed, which is what you are experiencing.

The pictures I tried to copy and paste, but couldn’t, clearly showed “Stop” on the lever dial. You might have the belt tension too tight, or your pulleys aren’t adjusted properly. You belts might even be too wide.

Good luck in finding a solution.

Try this… Put a spindle blank between centers, turn it round, and put the lever dial in the stop the position. When the spindle rotates at it’s slowest speed, see if you can stop the spindle from turning by grabbing it with your gloved hands. If you can, it might just be the belts needing a break in period. ..... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

View Wildwood's profile (online now)


2451 posts in 2312 days

#3 posted 04-13-2015 07:12 PM

Reeves drive lathes need some routine cleaning & maintenance, sounds like you might need a new belt or simple adjustment cannot say because not seeing what you have before you. This manual talks little bit about adjustments and shows location of parts. Pretty much need to figure it out to make adjustments on your own or find someone local to help show you what to do.

Because learning to make adjustments takes time many people without patience or skills opt to modify those old lathes.

Looks like what they did with that Oliver lathe for sale.

-- Bill

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