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Rough estimate on Atlas 10f?

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Firewood

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I came across what I am pretty certain is a 40's Atlas 10F. It took a bit of searching but I am pretty sure this is what it is. It is for sale, seems to be in reasonable condition (but I am greener than a novice so I'm not even sure how to check how true it is). It has change gears, a 3 and a 4 jaw chuck. The only thing I don't like is it has been welded to a bench (but a very heavy-duty bench at least). I'm in western Canada where there aren't lathes available at any given time so I'm thinking it will fetch a higher price here than other places. I'm looking for a lathe to get started and learn on. Just wondering if people think this would be suitable and what a realistic price range for these machines is?

Thanks so much!
 

Nutfarmer

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I would be cautious about it being welded to the bench. It all depends on how it was done. Lathe beds are normally bolted to a bench so they can be leveled. Welding the bed to anything can induce stress and warpage. that is the last thing to want in a lathe bed. Value all depends on the condition and what tooling is included. In California I have seen an Atlas with a 10 inch swing run any where from 5 hundred to 2 Thousand.
 

bill70j

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I'm looking for a lathe to get started and learn on. Just wondering if people think this would be suitable and what a realistic price range for these machines is?
FWIW, I bought a 10" Atlas QC-42 for $675 off Craigslist. That is a California Central Coast price from three years ago. Not sure how comparable the price might be to your location. I think the $675 was a fairly good deal. I have seen comparable machines go for $500 - $1,000 in this area.

The deal included 3 and 4 jaw chucks, drive and face plates, steady rest, lantern-style tool post + 7 holders, plus a number of centers, drill chucks, taps, drills, and ground HSS tool bits. He also threw in "How to Run a Lathe," and other Atlas literature.

The machine was pretty dirty and both lathe chucks and one of the drill chucks were frozen. Other than that, the machine was solid.

I think a used 10 inch Atlas in good shape is a fine machine to learn on. I use mine for smaller, detail work and find it quite capable for that work. Plus it's fun to work on. But if you have a bigger budget and have plans to work on larger projects, I would buy a larger, more rigid machine.

Here is the Craigslist photo of my Atlas QC-42.

Atlas 10 in Lathe.jpg
 
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WCraig

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it has been welded to a bench
I hope you don't have your heart set on it because this seems like a deal-breaker to me. That is a terrible abuse--I would assume it is distorted from the heat unless it can be proven otherwise. So as be turning a 12+ inch bar that doesn't taper more than 1/2 a thou from end to end. Who knows what else welder-boy did to that poor machine.

In general, condition and accessories have a huge impact on a particular lathe's value. With a flat-bed Atlas, if you can feel any wear in the bed near the chuck, that means that multiple thous have been worn away. Any broken handles? Missing parts? You'll pay gold-plated prices for replacements--especially with shipping to Canada. Unless the 3-jaw is pristine, you're best to assume that the jaws are bell-mouthed and will not hold stock on centre or straight. Then everything else: tools and tool-holding system, drill chuck(s), live centre(s), steady rest, ... These things really add up if you have to buy them new.

OTOH, if you search and are ready to drop everything and drive--and bring cash--you ought to be able to find something. BTW, the way it works is that as soon as you buy a lathe, you'll see multiple listings for machines that are cheaper, better, closer, etc. No one knows why; it just happens! ;)

Good luck.

Craig
 

bill70j

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Unless the 3-jaw is pristine, you're best to assume that the jaws are bell-mouthed and will not hold stock on centre or straight.
Good point, Craig. Precisely what I found on the Cushman chuck that came with my QC-42 and that is shown mounted in the photo above. Of course that led to the need for grinding the jaws, and everything that goes along with being able to do that properly.
 

wa5cab

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If it is actually an Atlas 10F, you don't have to leave it welded to the bench (doing this should be considered an absolute No-No). Every Atlas built from 1932 through 1981 had the bed sitting upon two removable legs. Getting at the bolts may not be real easy but finding replacement legs should be easy, as with normal treatment, nothing ever happens to them. So there isn't much of a market to run their price up.
 

Firewood

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Thanks very much for the replies. I figured welding it was a bad idea because you are going to get some degree of force applied to the lathe from the weld shrinkage when it cools. I want something to get started learning basic machining but I also don't want to buy someone else's headaches (I've done that before). I bought an EMCO V10P thinking I was getting a good lathe, but it needs a lot to get it functioning properly (I got hosed on that purchase, stupid me for being in a rush and not doing my homework). I'm not looking for perfection or even a great lathe, just something to start on. I'm going to let him know I will pass on it unless he plans on going down to a very low price.

Thanks again for the replies.
 

Firewood

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Can you cross the border for one? In Nordland $800 (no affiliation) https://seattle.craigslist.org/kit/tls/d/nordland-south-bend-9-lathe/6960467131.html
That looks like a good package. I think I am going to have to reign myself in and watch for a good package. It sounds like it pays off in spades to find a good package that includes a 3 and 4 jaw chuck, tooling, steady rest, follower rest etc. instead of trying to source everything after the fact. I travel to different parts of the BC and Alberta to visit family once a year and head down south to the US from time to time and I'll maybe poke around wherever I go. It just seems like anything priced reasonably goes at an alarming rate.

From what I have read it sounds like older machines from the US, England, Germany etc. are the way to go but some people say the better built Taiwan machines are ok. Lots to learn before I even get my hands on the tools!
 

Firewood

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These are the images of the lathe in question. I believe he said the bed is 44" and the motor is 220V.


lathe1.jpglathe2.jpg
 

WCraig

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These are the images of the lathe in question. I believe he said the bed is 44" and the motor is 220V.


View attachment 300894View attachment 300895
Um, I see bolt heads in the normal spots for attaching the lathe feet to the stand. I can't make out any evidence of welding?!?

The top of the base is interesting; it appears to be highly polished since we can see the reflection of the diamond plate behind. Certainly a sturdy-looking stand.

BTW, it looks like a TH54 model. "T" means Timken bearings. "H" as it has the horizontal countershaft system rather than vertical. "54" as that is (I think) the bed length including the headstock.

Bit of rust on the tailstock end of the ways but that should clean off easily with a razor scraper. No way to make out how much wear there is in the bed, however.

Have you examined the machine in person?

Craig
 

wa5cab

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I started to make the same comment about the bolt heads and lack of any visible evidence of welding or brazing yesterday. Assuming that it was listed for sale online somewhere, did the write-up say that the legs were welded to the bench? Another point is that the legs are cast iron while the bench is probably steel. So they would probably have been brazed instead of welded. Although why anyone would go to the trouble to do that is a mystery to me.

Yes, 54" is the nominal length of the longest bed that Atlas made. This is the length of the ways, which are just slightly longer than the rest of the bed below them. The 54" includes about 12" that the headstock sits on and about 6" that the tailstock sits on, leaving approximately 36" between the tip of a dead center in the spindle and the tip of a dead center in the tailstock ram with the ram retracted to the zero mark and with the tailstock sitting on the bed with its right end flush with the right ends of the ways.
 

Firewood

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I haven't view it in person (yet?). Its a bit of a drive, but not too crazy. I'm pretty sure that's not a reflection but a hole in the stand with no back to it. The owner told me the lathe is welded to the stand, and in my mind that means the lathe itself, because otherwise he would have said the stand is welded to a bench. But it could definitely have been a miscommunication.

Do you guys seem more positive about it now?
 

wa5cab

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Yep, you're right. The top of the stand isn't solid. When I adjusted my eyes, I realized that through the opening, you can see the corrugated siding and the piece of diamond deck plate leaning against the siding.

I still can't say whether or not the legs are in fact welded or brazed to the stand. If the owner says that they are, then I guess that they are. But we don't know whether the owner correctly understands what part of what's visible came from Atlas and what part didn't. I'm afraid that the only way you are going to find out what the true situation is, is to go and look at it. Given the situation (where you and the lathe are and the general availability of machine tools in your area) I think that I would make the drive. But I would also be prepared to tell the current owner that I only wanted the lathe itself, and not the stand.
 

WCraig

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... The owner told me the lathe is welded to the stand [...] But it could definitely have been a miscommunication.

Do you guys seem more positive about it now?
Looks like crossed wires to me. It is a bit of an odd stand--apparently no place to store tools or even just a place to put them down.

If the machine is still available, perhaps you can get the seller to clarify about how it is attached. The issue is "levelling" the lathe. To get the axis of rotation really parallel with the bed of the lathe, it is common to put shims under one or more of the lathe's feet. If the machine is bolted down, that's trivial to do; if brazed or welded, it's impossible. Plus, it is a lot easier to move a machine if you can separate it from the stand.

Craig
 

wa5cab

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I think that's a good synopsis. If the legs are welded to the stand, pass. If he was referring to something else, go and look at it. But if what we think that we now know about the stand is correct (no back or top), I wouldn't take the stand.
 

Latinrascalrg1

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Could be the legs are welded to the "Stand" not the Lathe. Maybe he was asked if the bench itself comes apart for transport but the lathe is bolted to the bench. Also that bench top look to only have a front rail running the lathes length left to right but front to back looks to be "floating" in a sense but im sure it has some kind of support under the lathes back bed legs.
 

Wierd Harold

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If you blow the pictures up and play with brightness/contrast you can see that the top of the bench is a rectangle made from angle and the part with the doors is a box that was probably something else at one time. No signs of welding but could be on the inside of the legs at the edge of the angle iron .It sure would be interesting to look at it in person.
HWF
 
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