Older Clausing-Colchester vs similar size LeBlonde or Cincinnati?
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  1. #1
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    Default Older Clausing-Colchester vs similar size LeBlonde or Cincinnati?

    I'm looking at a 1965 13 x 36" Clausing Colchester, user-owned and cared-for, ways said to be in excellent shape, with 3J, 4J, steady, and QCTP setup included. Price $3200 plus tax, plus cross-country freight at around $1800, so, total a bit over $5,000.

    lathe metal, Clausing 13 x 36 | eBay

    clausing-13-x-36.jpg s-l500-5-.jpgs-l500-6-.jpgs-l500-4-.jpg

    Now, on the West coast currently I can buy an equivalent-size (or somewhat larger) LeBlonde or Cincinnati for about the same amount, though they rarely come with much in the way of tooling.

    So is this just an old clunker I should leave alone, not worth getting shipped? Will just about any LeBlonde of the same vintage beat it hands-down? Would like to hear your opinions.


    --thanks

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    Multi-fix tool post +++ also rotary converter if you need same included. Been around several of those C-C lathes liked them a lot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaggy View Post
    I'm looking at a 1965 13 x 36" Clausing Colchester, user-owned and cared-for, ways said to be in excellent shape, with 3J, 4J, steady, and QCTP setup included. Price $3200 plus tax, plus cross-country freight at around $1800, so, total a bit over $5,000.

    lathe metal, Clausing 13 x 36 | eBay

    clausing-13-x-36.jpg s-l500-5-.jpgs-l500-6-.jpgs-l500-4-.jpg

    Now, on the West coast currently I can buy an equivalent-size (or somewhat larger) LeBlonde or Cincinnati for about the same amount, though they rarely come with much in the way of tooling.

    So is this just an old clunker I should leave alone, not worth getting shipped? Will just about any LeBlonde of the same vintage beat it hands-down? Would like to hear your opinions.


    --thanks
    "Old" sort of. "Clunker" maybe not. "Medium" as lathes go, but respected as an honest worker-bee at it.

    There are a lot more "positives" than negatives in those fotos, even to keeping the right lubes close to hand? Looks as if the PO took good care of it.

    You MAY have hit a sweet spot. "Condition, condition, condition..." trumps "legendary powerful".... but worn plumb TF out!

    - IF.. there really IS very low wear on the ways?.. there could naturally be low wear ALL OVER.

    - IF.. the owner was a small shop or better-yet an only now-and-then HOBBY user? "Low wear" could be the reality, not just a BS claim of it.

    A(ny) LeBlond, Regal OR "Heavy Duty", a(ny) Tray-top Cinncinati, is FAR the more likely to have been in heavier "industrial" service and be far worse for wear, even to the extent they were heavier lathes.

    They might be more likely to beat your BUDGET "hands down" before they were put in good enough shape to beat the Colchester that was ready to run?

    The Cinncy "tray top" era, BTW, actually weren't much use atall put up against a Large & Shapely.

    I was often ON one at first at Galis because no one with more USWA seniority wanted to go near the wimp-ass SOB when even an old Niles would kick its underpowered ass clear into the middle of next week! Upside was it had the least wear of any lathe on Galis' line BECAUSE nobody wanted to deal with working so damned slow, rather than drawing a more powerful L&S or an already "up-motored" Niles!

    My gut says that's too much money for a Colchy, but as said: "condition, condition..."

    Tooling seems to be a sweet starting point as covers all the initial bases as well.

    2CW

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    That's a good start, then -- thanks John!

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    Thanks thermite.

    It also has the (optional) induction-hardened ways - original sticker still intact.

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    What do you think of the freight charges? 'U-Ship'. I got three quotes so far, from just under $1800 to just over $2200+ From DE to CA, liftgate both ends, to and from residential.

    I considered flying there and a long road trip back with a u-haul, but...

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaggy View Post
    I'm looking at a 1965 13 x 36" Clausing Colchester, user-owned and cared-for, ways said to be in excellent shape, with 3J, 4J, steady, and QCTP setup included. Price $3200 plus tax, plus cross-country freight at around $1800, so, total a bit over $5,000.

    lathe metal, Clausing 13 x 36 | eBay
    Isn't the one from Peter cheaper, even thought it is coming overseas?
    Not knocking multifix, but that looks like the pee wee? one and the kit isnt that much money new. The create tool one is slightly cheaper still. I think I read that the pee wee is made in china by create tool also?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob F. View Post
    Isn't the one from Peter cheaper, even thought it is coming overseas?
    Not knocking multifix, but that looks like the pee wee? one and the kit isnt that much money new. The create tool one is slightly cheaper still. I think I read that the pee wee is made in china by create tool also?
    You mean Peter's Sag 12? Price as it sits is over 5000 US plus he said 1500 euros and whatever o'seas shipping red-tape horrors await. And it's a 440V Metric machine.
    So I thought I'd look at alternatives, and more locally (haha) -- Delaware is only what, 2500 miles away?

    Also, (follow my logic here) once I make a significant alternative purchase -- that's when what I *really* wanted will turn up!! Smart, huh?

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    I just looked at exchange from euro to dollar and it is in their favor now. The 4750 euro price is aprox 5500 US today Bummer on that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob F. View Post
    I just looked at exchange from euro to dollar and it is in their favor now. The 4750 euro price is aprox 5500 US today Bummer on that.
    Right. Thanks though. One'll turn up in SoCal again, one of these days.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaggy View Post
    Also, (follow my logic here) once I make a significant alternative purchase -- that's when what I *really* wanted will turn up!! Smart, huh?
    Oh? You've twigged to that, have you?

    Well .."back in '37....."

    I had 'shortlisted" a Clausing-Colchester Triumph-2000 as a tad above "mediocre".. but really .. all the lathe I NEEDED! And more, really.

    And one DID eventally turn-up. As close as Frederick, MD, IIRC?
    Folks this area run daily commutes further than that is from me.

    And for about $1500 and a bit.

    About six months after I had acquired the first - of two - 10EE.. and was well under way to what was to become around a fifty thousand dollar spend. MUCH of it on TOOLING and rigging/transport.

    Your shop.

    Your dice-roll!

    No sympathy.

    We have ALL "BTDTGTTS" at one time if not EVERY time!


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    Would want to see and try out a used lathe in person before buying. Suggest waiting till one in your desired capacity shows up closer to local.

    Another consideration is parts. When I sold my old round head 15” Colchester over 25 years ago, it was getting difficult to find parts. You may find 13” round head parts unobtainium...

    It appears, from a distance, that Mori Seiki’s and their clones are common near you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    Would want to see and try out a used lathe in person before buying. Suggest waiting till one in your desired capacity shows up closer to local.

    Another consideration is parts. When I sold my old round head 15” Colchester over 25 years ago, it was getting difficult to find parts. You may find 13” round head parts unobtainium...

    It appears, from a distance, that Mori Seiki’s and their clones are common near you.
    Good points. So far it's just an experiment to try and evaluate the risk and total cost. Of course I'd much prefer to drive, check out, and pick up myself.

    Sadly, the usual Moris weigh far too much for me to move and position in my current environment. Thus 12-14" swing, short bed, and under a ton is about it. Hard to find a really solid lathe that compact (well, I did, but blew it).

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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    Would want to see and try out a used lathe in person before buying. Suggest waiting till one in your desired capacity shows up closer to local.

    Another consideration is parts. When I sold my old round head 15” Colchester over 25 years ago, it was getting difficult to find parts. You may find 13” round head parts unobtainium...

    It appears, from a distance, that Mori Seiki’s and their clones are common near you.
    Those Mori Seikis near me are, unfortunately, mostly 17" machines that weigh ~3500 lbs. Even the Mori 15's are extremely heavy.

    To your point above, I happened to notice the unholy prices being asked on flea-buy for used Colchester parts. Now I'm wondering about the spindle bearings and condition of the gears, and who knows what else. But then again (rationalization kicking in), even when you are able to check out a lathe hands-on, do you (can you) check absolutely everything? I think not - and certainly not, in my case at least, with the usual haste to just 'get it home'. If the price is right, it's a used machine, you expect to do some work on it, what the hell.

    So it would be a gamble, for sure. I guess what I'm asking is, if all goes well, is this potentially a great lathe, and worth a certain amount of risk? They appear far more common to the East coast, so there's a touch of the exotic, or at least different. And I've always liked the rounded-off '50s British Industrial lines, rather than the later kind of soulless square-headstock style.

    Yep, stuck in the 1950s/60s -- that's me!

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    Yup, got to admit I like driving older roundhead Colchesters. Just seem to feel nice to the hand. Not quite as nice as DS&G, but you get the idea. Just too bad that they leak, are very noisy and have a high probability of being worn out.

    If I was looking for a daily driver to make money with, it wouldn’t be a Colchester. For (mostly) fun, yup I have two, and the Chipmaster will be with me till I’m sent to the wrinkle ranch. Not so sure about the Triumph 2000.

    Good luck in your search and don’t be in a hurry. Maybe get a smaller lathe to start, as you’re going to want two lathes anyways ;-)

    L7

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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky7 View Post
    Yup, got to admit I like driving older roundhead Colchesters. Just seem to feel nice to the hand. Not quite as nice as DS&G, but you get the idea. Just too bad that they leak, are very noisy and have a high probability of being worn out.

    If I was looking for a daily driver to make money with, it wouldn’t be a Colchester. For (mostly) fun, yup I have two, and the Chipmaster will be with me till I’m sent to the wrinkle ranch. Not so sure about the Triumph 2000.

    Good luck in your search and don’t be in a hurry. Maybe get a smaller lathe to start, as you’re going to want two lathes anyways ;-)

    L7
    Thanks again lucky. Geez, this is starting to sound like I'm buying a 1960s Jag! I think I'd best take your advice and wait until I can get hands-on. Or get something more practical.

    (PS - I've got a long-bed SB9A 'toolroom' with the works, so I'm pretty well set - just sometimes need a bit more beef.)

    Blimey, them Collies are a luverly chunk o' iron, though, eh?

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaggy View Post
    Thanks again lucky. Geez, this is starting to sound like I'm buying a 1960s Jag! If so, I think I'd best take your advice and wait, at least until I can get hands-on. Or something more practical.

    (PS - I've got a long-bed SB9A 'toolroom' with the works, so I'm pretty well set - just sometimes need a bit more beef.)

    Blimey, them Collies are a luverly chunk o' iron, though, eh?

    --cheerio then
    They do seem to have their following in Blighty.

    However.... a Smart & Brown, a Holbrook, a DS&G, a...it's Mother England, mate, not South Georgia Island. There's Iron all over the place, some of it cleverly masquerading as the remains of railways and bridges!

    Or lamposts. Ex next-higher, retired to his native Penzance, where he was on first-name terms with every stone in the pavement, was accosted by a young - and drunken -hooligan one late and dark night. Fellow wound up to lay a roundhouse punch on him.

    "I wouldn't do that if I were you, lad!"

    No avail.

    Dumb sod delivered his best shot!

    Right square into the immutable fluted black-enameled column of a massive Edwardian-era Iron lampost Pat was standing directly behind!

    I think he got a good five years worth of mileage out of the story?

    You'd have to know Penzance?

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    Cast Iron was the Styrofoam of the 1890s God Save The Queen!

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    Quote Originally Posted by shaggy View Post
    [thermite] Cast Iron was the Styrofoam of the 1890s.
    Unfortunately, per the post-disaster inquiry, some of it damned near WAS!

    Tay Bridge disaster - Wikipedia


    And then they got it right, even if odd-looking:

    Forth Bridge - Wikipedia

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    Price quoted is astronomical for a roundhead Colchester ......yes,they have a hardened bed,but ,no ,they are not a good lathe....and Ive bought sold ,fixed ,dozens.....the one I have now ,I got free.....which at this point in time (50 years after the last was made) is about what they are worth.....Forget it,and if you must have a Colchester get the later squareline model .....very greatly improved over the roundhead.


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