What's new
What's new

Stark lathe serial number 5 ca. 1862

Mar 12, 2005
Metro NY, USA
Season's Greetings!
Folks the images attached show what we consider the oldest Stark lathe in existence. It is serial number 5. The head stock, bed, tail stock, bed and pedestal are of cast brass (somewhat crudely - blow holes at the tail stock end of the bed). There are traces of soft solder on the concave cradle of the pedestal for the bed. That was from wiping solder onto that surface and scraping in a good contact to the underside of the bed. The tip over rest is something we added but the hold down screw assembly for it is original. John Stark built the first examples personally. This lathe shows those features. The Oct. 19th. 1858 patent alludes to the spring collet also made in Waltham. One collet came with this lathe - it is 4.7mm with a long taper. Probably one of the oldest collets in existence as well.


  • stark1 (1).jpg
    stark1 (1).jpg
    56.1 KB · Views: 164
  • stark1 (2).jpg
    stark1 (2).jpg
    54.8 KB · Views: 153
  • stark1 (3).jpg
    stark1 (3).jpg
    43.5 KB · Views: 154
  • stark1 (5).JPG
    stark1 (5).JPG
    96.7 KB · Views: 141
  • stark1 (6).jpg
    stark1 (6).jpg
    34.5 KB · Views: 145


Feb 1, 2022
I own four Stark's, two of which I use all the time. I saw a small guy like this and bought it just because I love Stark's. When I saw the post I looked at the serial number ... #23. :-)


Cast Iron
Mar 20, 2017
Does anybody know if Stark numbered all their machines in series or were the individual models numbered with their own sequence? I recently acquired a #4 serial number 351. I'm trying to get sense of which decade that might imply. If it is the 351st thing Stark made it would be older than the 351st #4 might be.