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  1. #1
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    Default Main Spindle thru hole

    To the point Gentlemen and Ladies what brands of mid sized lathes are notorious for large thru holes? Thank you, Clyde

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    Quote Originally Posted by steelsponge View Post
    To the point Gentlemen and Ladies what brands of mid sized lathes are notorious for large thru holes? Thank you, Clyde
    Look up " Oil Country " lathes. Lots of makers produce them, or they used to.

    Regards Tyrone.

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    Hello Clyde:

    LeBlond produced a number of Regal lathes and other engine lathes with large thru holes in what would be mid-size range. I would call about 18"-24" the midsized range, but that's just my opinion.

    Somewhere around 18"-25" swing lathes were made by LeBlond with 5" bore thru the spindle. Some were made with the ability to mount a chuck on the left side of the headstock, and some were simply made with the large spindle bore. I have been doing some engineering work for a machine shop near here, and their three larger lathes are LeBlonds. One of them is maybe 18" swing and has the 5" spindle bore, but does not have provisions for mounting a chuck on the left side of the headstock. This would not be a true "oil country" lathe, since it does not have that second chuck. In more recent time, the Korean lathes marketed under the "Lansing" name in the USA were available with large spindle bores in 16" swing and perhaps larger.

    Back about 25 years ago, we were shopping for a replacement engine lathe for the powerplant machine shop. We were needing a lathe 25" swing x 96" between centers. The successors to LeBlond had a used lathe they wanted us to look at. It was a Regal series lathe with about a 5" spindle bore. The lathe had a gear missing major chunks out of a few teeth in the headstock, and even with my bad hearing, I could hear the sounds of damaged gearing. That was a lathe we did not buy. My guess is some hotshot tried shifting the headstock gearing on the fly once too often. My other assessment of that lathe was it was too much spindle on too light a lathe.

    I am sure firms like Axelson must have also offered oil country lathes with large spindle bores.

    I would not say that "notoriety" describes a lathe builder who offered lathes with large spindle bores. I'd call it a "plus".

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    And much larger is common like these twenties Lodge & Shipleys with ten inch holes

    l-s-hollow.jpg

    ph

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    Large spindle bores have tradeoffs. Bearings are more expensive. Top speed is usually lower. Price is usually higher.


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