In my rounds I saw this today on the Spokane craigslist: 1996 Hardinge HLV-H inch metric like new (it has tooling) It looks good in the pic...but I was knocked off the chair at the price $35,000. Did this guy slip a digit?
You keep your fingers off the keyboard. LOL. I Do believe it should come to Saskatchewan, but a little further north!!! Trying to talk the wife into that whole first born thing? I think I am just about there!
8000 bucks for a 3 year old HLVH, it must be broken. As to highest precision lathe ever made, hmmmm, specs on spindle runout for HLVH is same as 10ee, but the EE weights twice as much and has twice the HP. I like HLVH and would snag one if one came along, but finest ever, what about European toolroom lathes?
I love my 1964 HLVH. It has such light controls,it feels like driving a sports car. A very,very thoughtfully designed lathe,too. Many features are just the essence of simplicity.
The Monarch is a great lathe,too. I bought one a few years ago,but getting the very complex drive mechanism to work was more than I have the energy to delve into these days. I sent it back.
That drive mechanism is the reason why Monarch 10 EE's never sell for what a comparable HLVH will fetch. If you had a RUNNING EE,it is indeed a very fine lathe. It will do 4000 RPM,compared to the top speed of 3000 of the HLVH. Good for turning very small parts. And,the EE has a very large thread range compared to the 27 threads of the HLVH. As I mentioned,you can cut any other thread you desire by buying extra change geas to mount on the outboard end of the HLVH's QC gearbox. But,Hardinge wants a fortune for those gears,and they have a special tooth configuration (sort of a shortened 20º tooth). However,there is no reason I can see why you couldn't use any set of change gears you might have available,as long as you turn out adapters to mount the on the Hardinge's outboard banjo. Just don't mix Hardinge gears with others.
All in all,I suppose a Hardinge is a less daunting lathe to repair than a 10EE. That is a reason they cost more. The hardened steel bed even comes off,and can be re ground. There are MANY bolts holding it onto the cast iron body beneath,though! I'd hate to have to pull that massive 2 speed motor out of an HLVH! THAT would cost very big bucks to have to replace. And,I think only a Hardinge motor would do (Unless you could rig up some jack leg other means to power the late!)
No,those prices for a late model HLVH are about par for the course. They ran about $85,000.00,IIRC,at the time Hardinge stopped making them. There is just less call for manual lathes these days. Everyone has gone CNC,except small repair shops doing 1-off jobs,like I have done for years. You can spend very large amounts of money having a 10-EE back to Monarch for a rebuild,too. I doubt that $35,000.00 would do it.