Very old Monarch lathe is it worth saving?
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  1. #1
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    Default Very old Monarch lathe is it worth saving?

    Long story short I found an old Monarch lathe I believe is pre 1912. He wanted far more than it was worth when I first talked to him a couple weeks ago. He contacted me last night and told me I could have it if I came and got it soon (by Sunday) My question is is it worth it? Are these older once any good? Are they worth saving? Its a 3 1/2 hour drive one way for me to go get it and I only have a half tone truck so would need to rent a trailer to bring it home. he sent me another picture that shows it has a large 4 jaw chuck as well as a face plate and steady rest and change gears for it. Though I don't know if it is a full set of change gears. Where I live lathes and mills don't come up for sale to often and when they do they are worth a fair bit. Just to give you an idea cleaned up and in working condition this would normal go for between $1000 - $1500 in my area. If it was closer I wouldn't think twice about it but its a lot of work and I have very limited space.

    What are your guys thoughts? I know people really like the more modern monarchs.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails _59.jpg   7.jpg   6.jpg   5.jpg   4.jpg  


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    I guess it depends on what you'd use it for but I have a flat belt Sidney of about the same size that I use every day. It has its limitations, of course, but for the work I do, on pre-WWI cars, it is just fine. One big advantage to these belt driven, plain bearing lathes (to my mind) is that on they are simple. On the rare occasion something has to be fixed, it's not rocket science.

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    Hard to beat the price. Good brand and easy to repair if needed as panhard mentioned. Probably wont be using anything other than HSS with it, that is fine.

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    Neat thing about such oldies is you see what you get - honest simple iron - ready to do what it was doing 100 years ago - maybe after some "fixing up" mechanically

    Yes, the crowd of loose gears may not be complete - and all that does is make you learn about such things. The "ST" on the gear chart is for STUD GEAR

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    It's very similar to the Macgregor Gourlay lathe I am just finishing up getting back to working condition. Same size swing but it sounds like the bed might be a foot or so longer than what I have. The only down side to this one is it has to be moved into my shop by hand. That means complete disassembly in my drive way and move all the piece in and then find a spot for it and clean it ant put the puzzle back together. I have done that to a few lathes now getting them in and out so it not that bad. By far the worst part is rearranging the entire shop and moving the other lathe to find a spot for this one. The small shop is starting to get tight.

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    Also since you have no lathe now and live in a "machine desert" this old monarch looks really good. Dont obsess for the perfect lathe, you will eventually find it but now this one is going to work just fine. Besides after you have it and clean and do any little upgrades to it you should be able so sell it easily (machine desert) when a "better" one comes along. You may just decide there is no reason to "upgrade" after you get used to this one.

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    Part of my space problem is I do already have 2 lathes. If I didn't have any I would be all over this in a heart beat.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mega arc 5040dd View Post
    Part of my space problem is I do already have 2 lathes. If I didn't have any I would be all over this in a heart beat.
    Is this Monarch better than either of those in any way? Longer bed, more swing, stronger motor etc?
    Get it and sell off the least used of the bunch

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    And you never know until you get there what else he might think of parting with, or bits for the lathe that have been forgotten about in the back shelves until you show and jog his memory.

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  14. #10
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    A slightly "newer" pub

    http://vintagemachinery.org/pubs/2103/3727.pdf

    have fun


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