What's new
What's new

ESM-59 bed replacement question


Oct 30, 2020
I have an ESM-59. It is running well but the bed is worn has been really been beaten on. I do get issues with alignment and can get it working if I fiddle (fine if I don't shift the cross slide, and I need to fiddle with the tailstock, sometimes it clamps in way off). I wonder if a better bed (body?) would solve or reduce these issues. No opportunity here, but would a better condition tailstock just plug in or does it need to be mated somehow? My tailstock has no ability for adjustments.

I see an opportunity to get a used ESM-59 bed (...I guess they are all used at this point) with bad spindle bearings, would my spindle and head section just mate up well with a different bed or do they need to be matched? I don't know how to scrape, if I did, I suppose I could scrape my bed, headstock and tailstock.
Hardinge matched the parts and the beds to masters in the factory, not to each other.
Wish i had bought them (masters) at the auction for yard art. They went dirt cheap, and were beautiful granite and metal constructions. But i was not thinking far enough ahead.

To the point of your question, Hardinge made early and ongoing efforts to make tooling interchangeable.
I don't know if there was not some final fitting, but they offered all the accessories separately and backwards compatible essentialy mail order.

To your problem, the beds are an easy shape to replicate, and to grind or to plane and scrape.
I've made both replica bed sections out of steel bars, and done some minor restoration on them, and have scraped many versions of the accessories.

The only potential complication with the headstocks and TS's is if the cam-locks would need changed to accommodate metal removal. Again, i have scraped accessories, and the original camlocks generally were still effective.

You don't say which version of headstock you have?
Flat belt back stand is easier than the unitized on steel cabinet. But both are simple compared to an inverted V-way lathe of the conventional type. (recognising that the ESM bed is essentially a single inverted V with flat top)

My guess (& experience) is that your TS base is more worn than the bed. But once fitting is started, there is no sense but to make the bed right first.