Seth Wilmarth Union Works lathe CL
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  1. #1
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    Default Seth Wilmarth Union Works lathe CL

    Very cool old lathe. Needs a good home. same builder as the Civil war lathe in Selma.
    Seth Wilmarth 24" Lathe



    Not too much on Seth Wilmarth but I came across this locomotive that was built in the 1850s by Seth Wilmarth.
    Cumberland Valley Railroad Steam Locomotive, Pioneer | National Museum of American History

    And the Vintage Machinery page on Union works.
    Union Works - History | VintageMachinery.org

    I also dug up this history of Wilmarth and Union Works.

    Little is known of the builder of the _Pioneer_, Seth Wilmarth, and
    nothing in the way of a satisfactory history of his business is
    available. For the reader's general interest the following information
    is noted.[16]

    Seth Wilmarth was born in Brattleboro, Vermont, on September 8, 1810. He
    is thought to have learned the machinist trade in Pawtucket, Rhode
    Island, before coming to Boston and working for the Boston Locomotive
    Works, Hinkley and Drury proprietors. In about 1836 he opened a machine
    shop and, encouraged by an expanding business, in 1841 he built a new
    shop in South Boston which became known as the Union Works.[17] Wilmarth
    was in the general machine business but his reputation was made in the
    manufacture of machine tools, notably lathes. He is believed to have
    built his first locomotive in 1842, but locomotive building never became
    his main line of work. Wilmarth patterned his engines after those of
    Hinkley and undoubtedly, in common with the other New England builders
    of this period, favored the steady-riding, inside-connection engines.
    The "Shanghais," so-called because of their great height, built for the
    Boston and Worcester Railroad by Wilmarth in 1849, were among the best
    known inside-connection engines operated in this country (fig. 14).
    While the greater part of Wilmarth's engines was built for New England
    roads, many were constructed for lines outside that area, including the
    Pennsylvania Railroad, Ohio and Pennsylvania Railroad, and the Erie.

    A comparison of the surviving illustrations of Hinkley and Wilmarth
    engines of the 1850's reveals a remarkable similarity in their details
    (figs. 14 and 15). Notice particularly the straight boiler, riveted
    frame, closely set truck wheels, feedwater pump driven by a pin on the
    crank of the driving wheel, and details of the dome cover. All of the
    features are duplicated exactly by both builders. This is not surprising
    considering the proximity of the plants and the fact that Wilmarth had
    been previously employed by Hinkley.

    In 1854 Wilmarth was engaged by the New York and Erie Railroad to build
    fifty 6-foot gauge engines.[18] After work had been started on these
    engines, and a large store of material had been purchased for their
    construction, Wilmarth was informed that the railroad could not pay cash
    but that he would have to take notes in payment.[19] There was at this
    time a mild economic panic and notes could be sold only at a heavy
    discount. This crisis closed the Union Works. The next year, 1855, Seth
    Wilmarth was appointed master mechanic of the Charlestown Navy Yard,
    Boston, where he worked for twenty years. He died in Malden,
    Massachusetts, on November 5, 1886.

  2. #2
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    It just had to happen................that thing is an hour from me.
    I would like to see a better view of the conversion drive, it looks to be nice and compact.
    I'm in a bad position to take on anymore iron, as I am involved in a reorganization currently...........and working 7 days a week otherwise

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    Thanks for posting that. I can't help from thinking that may be tied in some how to the Wilmarth & Morman tool grinder I had, maybe was a partner ship.
    Dan

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    Here is a planer he built in 1866 for the Navy yard in Boston.

    Rob
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails seth-wilmarth.jpg  

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    I did come across some information that talked about the work he did at the naval yard and they mentioned that planer. Curious to know if this lathe was built why he was employed by the navy or pre 1855 when he was still running Union Works.

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    I am very interested in this piece of history. If anyone local to this lathe could check it out for me in exchange for compensation PM me. I have made contact with the owner. I am too busy working to just hop on a plane.

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    I acquired this machine between Xmas & New Year. It is presently at my home near Cincinnati, OH. I was afraid it might end up in a scrap yard.

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    Glad to hear it was saved. At the time I was interested in it and I was in contact with the seller but it sold quick. I figured some farmer had bought it to put it to work fixing tractors and such. If you are at all interested in more of the history of Seth Wilmarth. I found some interesting stuff under Google books by just typing his name in.

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    I'd like to have seen the conversion for the old belt drive, looks neat and compact............unlike some. Pic was kind of dark, so hard to get much detail.


    It was only about ten miles from work.


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