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  1. #1
    Kincardine is offline Aluminum
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    Default South Bend Lubrication - 9A

    After reading a post on here that asked what the proper oil to use in the headstock etc., would be...
    ...I suddenly realised that I know far less about the Lube System than I should.
    I checked on the South Bend site, but nothing.
    Does anyone have a link to a schematic drawing, or any other info?
    As far as the oil goes, is there something adequate locally, or is this something we have to order in a 5 gal pail?

  2. #2
    Paula's Avatar
    Paula is offline Titanium
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    I bought a gallon of spindle oil ("A") from McMaster-Carr (lifetime+ supply) for around fifteen bucks. It's catalog #13595K71.

    For reference, type "B" is #3025K29, and type "C" is #3025K34.

    Here's a link to a lubrication chart on Steve Wells' website:

    http://www.wswells.com/data/general/SBL_oiling_.pdf

    Paula

  3. #3
    Kincardine is offline Aluminum
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    Default Thanks Paula...

    That link was exactly what I was hoping to find! I hope others may benefit from it also.
    One note though; It mentions to "drain and flush" certain areas once in a while. Do you ever do that?

  4. #4
    Paula's Avatar
    Paula is offline Titanium
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    It's probably a good idea any time you buy a used lathe, especially if it is of unknown heritage, or obvious heavy use. Once the headstock and apron have been flushed, it's not something that has to be done very often under normal home shop use. Think in terms of years.

    Paula

  5. #5
    cooncatbob's Avatar
    cooncatbob is offline Hot Rolled
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    Default

    I really like that chart. I have a copy taped above my lathe so I know what oil goes where.

  6. #6
    chengdave2003 is offline Aluminum
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    Default South Bend Lubrication - 9A

    According to the oil chart you should drain and flush the spindle bearings every three months. How does one drain and flush it? I go through very little oil in the spindle, only needing to top it off every week or so.

    One of these days I'll get the nerve to remove the spindle and inspect/replace the wicks.

    Dave

  7. #7
    Webb Wyman is offline Stainless
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    Default

    Hi There,

    The chart is very pretty BUT all the South Bend Lathe literature I have seen
    specifically warns against using motor or "crankcase" oils on their lathes. There are
    lubrication charts that were produced by South Bend Lathe showing all the lubrication
    points and proper oils to use. I am surprised that there isn't a copy of it on the web
    somewhere.

    I posted this a long time ago:

    South bend Lathes use three types of oil. The lubrication chart refers to them as A, B and C. These oils were rated by the old Saybolt viscosity system (Saybolt Universal Seconds {SUS}). Most oils today are rated by SAE or ISO systems. This is how it breaks down:

    A - 100 SUS @ 100 Deg. F - ISO 22,
    B - 150 to 240 SUS @ 100 Deg. F - ISO 32 to 50 or SAE 10 to 20 (20 is the better choice),
    C - 250 to 500 SUS @ 100 Deg. F - ISO 55 to 100 or SAE 20 to 30 (30 is the better choice).

    South Bend Lathes recommends NOT using motor oils. They contain additives that can prove harmful to the machine over the long run. Use only high grade machine oils. I use Mobil Oils as follows:

    A - Mobil Velocite Spindle Oil No. 10,
    B - Mobil DTE Hydraulic Oil 25 or DTE Machine/Turbine Medium Heavy,
    C - Mobil Vactra Way Oil No. 2.

    Mobil machine oils can be ordered from McMaster-Carr or MSC or a number of other good supply houses. Of course, there are other equivalents made by other oil companies.

    Good Luck!
    -Blue Chips-
    Webb

  8. #8
    Tex-VA is offline Cast Iron
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    Default Re: Flushing oil reservoirs

    Hey Web, - I may have posted the below in the wrong place, it seems like it might ought to be here. I know Web from long ago, and he is very knowledgeable about all things all things South Bend. I certainly would listen to any thing he has to say. May be he will have some ideas on this post. Tex

    I hope this link works.

    http://www.practicalmachinist.com/vb...757#post828757

  9. #9
    bentwrench is offline Cast Iron
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    Default

    I have anothe question to add to this dicussion. I have a 9" sb, with the spindle bering oilers on the side, and the spring loaded wicks. When I cleaned up my heastock I soaked the wicks and dried them out and put everything back together with 10W machine oil. My front bearing resevior stays full, and recirculated just fine, but my rear bearing drips oil down the back of the machine and I have to keep refilling the resivoir abut every 15 minutes.

    I did clean out the drain holes at each end of the bearings, and my clearnces are close to 1.5 thou. My bearings are plain cast iorn and are slotted, as opposed to a smooth bore. Is this a wick that is too soft and wicking too much oil? Or a prblem with the oil itself ( would spindle oil eliminate some of this)?

    Another related question, in the rear bearing the small return hole twards the back had some kind of spring retainer of sorts, what the heck is that for?

  10. #10
    Kincardine is offline Aluminum
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    Default Oiling

    ...Hmmm, I've been reading about the 3 different types of oil we are supposed to have; each of which is only available in 1 gal containers. I don't think so! My lathe is lucky to see any kind of oil ever!

    ...But, as a general oil, that you have in a squirt can, I like to use "Bardahl".

  11. #11
    mcruff is online now Hot Rolled
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    What is the problem with 1 gallon containers, they will last for years. $20 for a gallon is far cheaper than destroying the machine. If you have a local bulk supplier they can be easily found.
    The only real thing wrong with auto oil is the detergents, they keep particles in suspension instead of letting them fall to the bottom of the wells.
    I know there also rated to work at higher temps but with modern oils thats not really a problem.

  12. #12
    Rod Williams is offline Hot Rolled
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    hey bentwrench, i read in another post long ago that the springy thingy was used to break the oil surface tension. one of the forum members added the springs and stated that he had less oil lose. maybe someone can remember the post and supply the link?

  13. #13
    Don_Hartman's Avatar
    Don_Hartman is offline Hot Rolled
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    What do you guys think about using Mobil Vacuoline oil 1405 for SouthBends "B" oil it has a iso vg of 32 ?

    I have Vactra #2 for the ways all I neeed is the spindle oil.


    Don

  14. #14
    aboard_epsilon's Avatar
    aboard_epsilon is offline Titanium
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bentwrench View Post
    I have anothe question to add to this dicussion. I have a 9" sb, with the spindle bering oilers on the side, and the spring loaded wicks. When I cleaned up my heastock I soaked the wicks and dried them out and put everything back together with 10W machine oil. My front bearing resevior stays full, and recirculated just fine, but my rear bearing drips oil down the back of the machine and I have to keep refilling the resivoir abut every 15 minutes.

    I did clean out the drain holes at each end of the bearings, and my clearnces are close to 1.5 thou. My bearings are plain cast iorn and are slotted, as opposed to a smooth bore. Is this a wick that is too soft and wicking too much oil? Or a prblem with the oil itself ( would spindle oil eliminate some of this)?

    Another related question, in the rear bearing the small return hole twards the back had some kind of spring retainer of sorts, what the heck is that for?
    bet that loss is normal

    just guessing here

    the front bearing has the flange of the spindle shaft pressed up against it ...so more oil tight

    the back if its missing its pin that secures ball roller bearing race from turning...will allow race to turn ...and act as a centrifugal oil pump/flinger

    the red washer at the rear has two sides to it ...try fitting the best side in-wards.

    also the rear bearing is smaller .......

    the pulley set in the middle ........where do you think the oil goes ...cant remember ...but maybe the spiral groves in its core direct the oil to-wards the front bearing...so topping it up .

    also the recirculating idea is sort of OK ...but you want some loss ...so the oil gets replenished and does not lose its qualities.

    all the best.markj

  15. #15
    garyphansen is offline Titanium
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    An old guy that use to work for my dad (He was 83 in 1979 and still working) bought a South Bend 9N during WWII and ran it thousands of hours with plain old SAE 30wt oil because that is all he could get at the time. When the war ended and he could have bought the proper oil he stayed with the SAE 30wt oil because it was cheaper. In 1979 after thousands and thousands of hours of use the spindle of his lathe still met South Bend spects. As long as there is always plenty of oil to the plain bearings there will be no ware because there is no metal to metal contact. Gary P. Hansen

  16. #16
    bentwrench is offline Cast Iron
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    To update my psosts above. Since then I have replaced the felts in my headstock and use 5w spindle oil. The problem still exisits but it has greatly improved. So what do you know, keep your lathe in trim and use the right oil. Who would have thought....

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