Working a 1943 round dial and my saddle is very worn- wondering if anyone has one for sale before I start working on repairing this one? The oil line feeding the saddle was broken off and it clearly was run dry for a long time before I ended up with it.
I don't know that you can expect to find a used replacement that's going to be a lot better than the worn one, just worn differently. Really, the best choice at this point would be to grind the bed flat (it's going to have see some wear as well) and use way material on the saddle to bring it back to height and alignment with the headstock. I did that (as well as realigning the headstock and refitting the tailstock and shimming it to height) to my '56 some time ago - it had .012" wear on the saddle and .007" on the front way. Moglice brought it back up and aligned it nicely with the turning axis.
There really aren't any shortcuts here. If the saddle dropped significantly there's going to be substantial wear in the drove rod bushings, probably in the work fed from that rod. You're also going to need to look at the cross slide ways on the saddle, those aren't hard and will wear fast with no lube. The gib will take some abuse but it might need replacement (or shimming and scraping). If the cross slide wore it likely dropped and the cross slide nut is dragging on the cross slide screw, wearing both. That can also be brought up with way material or if you're lazy you could shim the nut lower.
I had a similar problem with my 59, the bed was worn and the saddle was not usable. I replaced the bed with a used bed from a mfg. lathe that was nice and straight, less than .001" of wear. I had two used saddles. The first one was worn convex, so it had a gap of .008" at the ends. The second was one from Mare Island that was in a lot of parts I bought at a Mare Island auction. It had been ground and built up with delrin, and it was a perfect fit. The only thing it was missing was the zigzag pattern for the oil groove. I cut that on the FP2NC mill with a ball mill and it came out nice. I had to be careful not to cut too deep, but since the vee is 60 degrees, doing the calcs was easy, it was just a 30/60/90 triangle.