I’ve been on an equipment buying spree and one addition to my shop was a new (to me) 10 inch South Bend lathe. She’s an oldie but a goodie! According to the serial number this Lathe was manufactured in the mid 1940s, and was probably WWII surplus. I love the fact that something manufactured 80 years ago is still functioning and may continue doing so after me!
I have a small hobby lathe at my house that really comes in handy making small parts, but I really wanted to have one at my shop. I’m not a machinist, but found my basic skills on lathe comes in handy nearly every day.
This lathe was one of three lathes that were owned by a machinist that recently passed away. I bought the medium sized lathe of the three but knew it needed some work to get working right. The first job was to fix the drive belt.
I’m pretty sure the machinist used the belts he used to hold up his pants to repair his machine, but I would repair it right.
I could have used anything to connect the belt together and it would have been better than what was there, but I decided to hand stitch the belt together with strong thread. Believe it or not there is a pattern I followed to stitch the leather belt made specifically for driving these lathes. I could have used the steel clips they make for this job, but hate the clicking noise of the steel. My connection is much quieter, and should last for years.