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Utilathe 9" Power Crossfeed

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Mark2019

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I recently purchased a Standard Modern Utilathe 9". Everything appears to be in good working order, although moving the power cross feed lever to the engage position does not have any effect. Does anyone have any experience with the saddle on this lathe, and why the power cross feed doesn't work? Before I go pulling it all apart, I thought it might be wise to talk to someone with some experience.
This is my first lathe, and for a 9", its very heavy. Mark
 

C-Bag

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I'm not an expert but is the lead screw turning? Got the selector in the correct position and then tighten the clutch knob on the bottom of the apron?

Sorry if you did all that. BTW, congrats, very nice lathe especially for your first lathe!
 

Bob Korves

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If the lead screw is turning, then see if the lead screw is turning the gear at the back of the apron. If that is working, then the problem is in the apron or the cross feed screw.

If the lead screw is not turning, then follow the drive components from the spindle to the lead screw looking for the problem.
 

Mark2019

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Lead screw turns and the forward/reverse lever for the lead screw works as expected. Thread dial also works as expected. Engage the half nut, carriage moves, release the half nut, and thread dial starts to turn again. The lockout mechanism for the cross feed appears to also work as expected. With the half nut engaged, the cross feed control is locked.

I'm reluctant to tear apart the apron, as the lathe is in full working order, other than the power cross feed. Being new to this machine, I have not gained the confidence yet, to start tearing it apart. I will take another look at the underside of the apron with the lead screw turning, and see what I can see. Maybe if I get a camera up under there, I will learn more.

The clutch that is mentioned above, is where I am a bit confused. Its a knurled knob, and when I turn it, it acts on the cross feed handle, and turns the cross feed handle rapidly, when I rotate it. It also have some in/out movement, but I don't know what the correct behavior of this clutch knob should be. Do I pull it to engage, or how is this knob supposed to operate? Its not clear how this clutch knob works.

Thanks to everyone for the reply, I will keep you posted on my findings.
 

francist

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There are several manuals for Standard Modern at the vintagemachinery.org site, perhaps you might find useful information in there if you don't already have a manual. I scanned through one briefly, but wasn't sure if it was the one for your machine or not. Just a thought.

-frank
 

Bob Korves

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I assume that the lever at the lower far right of the carriage is the threading feed (half nuts.) It appears(?) to be engaged. When threading is engaged, the feed function should be disengaged, by a lockout that keeps both from being engaged at the same time, which would break things. Move that lever up and then try to engage the cross feed.
(Just looked at the manual, and it confirms my thoughts.)
 

1448CW

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Get an inspection mirror back there to see what's happening. If your view is limited, it wouldn't hurt to just separate the apron from the carriage, as its pretty straightforward. Unbolt the lead screw support at the far end of bed, and then loosen the allen bolts on top of the carriage to separate the apron from the carriage.
 

jcp

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According to the posted manual and video, you're making the right moves. Something is wrong in the clutch or apron or both.
You've got the parts breakdown so get it disassembled. Disconnect the lead screw at both ends, remove the bolts /screws holding the apron to the saddle, move the whole unit to the work bench and see whats wrong. Please post up what you find.
 
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Mark2019

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I assume that the lever at the lower far right of the carriage is the threading feed (half nuts.) It appears(?) to be engaged. When threading is engaged, the feed function should be disengaged, by a lockout that keeps both from being engaged at the same time, which would break things. Move that lever up and then try to engage the cross feed.
(Just looked at the manual, and it confirms my thoughts.)
Half nut engages when you pull the lever up....
 

Mark2019

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Dropped the lead screw, detached the saddle, and took it to the bench. Removed the cover to expose the internals, and I don't see anything jumping out as a problem. All the gears turn, I can see no broken teeth, or gears that are not meshing properly. The cross feed screw looks good also. My attention is at the clutch for the cross slide engagement mechanism, and the clutch plates. Its not clear how this works, but as I keep getting deeper into it, I'm hopeful something will jump out as obviously wrong. New link of the saddle on the bench. Saddle removed.
 

Mark2019

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Thanks. My mistake, though seems backwards to me for ergonomics...
When operating the lathe, lifting the lever to engage is actually very natural, and as you reach the end of the pass, pushing the lever down is quick. I suspect that other lathes operate in the reverse, but this one is up to engage, down to release. If I ever get a new lathe that works the other way, I will be sure to make lots of mistakes until I get used to it.
 

jcp

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The operating manual says to "tighten the knurled knob" to engage the clutch. This to me means to twist the knurled knob clockwise to clamp the clutch plates together. Have you tried tightening the knob while watching the clutch plate mechanics, if you can see them?
 

Mark2019

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The operating manual says to "tighten the knurled knob" to engage the clutch. This to me means to twist the knurled knob clockwise to clamp the clutch plates together. Have you tried tightening the knob while watching the clutch plate mechanics, if you can see them?
This is what I read also, and yes, clockwise turning of the knob turns the crossfeed screw, but it doesn't seem to have a loosen/tighten feel to it. It feels like its ratched down, and doesn't back off. Need to get into it a bit deeper and see if I can get the clutch plates and knob off... Stay tuned.
 
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Mark2019

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The operating manual says to "tighten the knurled knob" to engage the clutch. This to me means to twist the knurled knob clockwise to clamp the clutch plates together. Have you tried tightening the knob while watching the clutch plate mechanics, if you can see them?
This post is the very helpful. I took the clutch mechanism all apart, and its still not clear how it works. But I think you are pointing me in the right direction. I'm going to have to create some kind of stand to mount the apron on, and re-assemble, to see if I can get a look at how the clutch works. There are 3 pins that appear to engage with the gear that drives it all, and a spring that looks like it is intended to let the 3 pins pull out of the mating gear. Depending on how tight the knob is turned, the clutch is either locked on, or if you spin the knob all the way in, or if you spin it all the way out, it will allow the 3 pins to come free of the gear. I will try to get some pictures to explain better. When I got the lathe, the clutch knob was tightened all the way down, and didn't behave as I would have expected. After disassembly, its clear that this knob is supposed to have some running room to tighten / loosen the clutch.

With the saddle disassembled, I also found that the worm gear that runs the carriage is badly worn, so I am looking for a replacement. It will probably cost an arm and a leg to get a new worm gear. Sent a request for quote to Standard Modern, awaiting reply.

I have to say thank you to all on this forum for all the advice, and giving me the confidence to attempt disassembly of the lathe. It came apart exactly as described, with little fuss, and reassembly does not seem to be too difficult. Thanks to all for the help.
Mark
 

jcp

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This is good news. Please post up when you get it repaired.
 
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jcp

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Mark, I just had a thought. There should be a key between the lead screw and worm. Check that it isn't worn out so far that the lead screw cannot drive the worm.
 

conibear

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Mark I have the same lathe. If you wish maybe tomorrow we can get on the phone together and see if I can help, before we moved up here to French River we lived in Beaverton.
 
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